Photo: Philip Friedman/Studio D

6 of 7
The Old Man and the Sea
96 pages; Scribner Classics
Hemingway's last major work of fiction, the epic tale of a luckless fisherman and his exhausting struggle to reel in a giant marlin, "is just a beautiful story, simply told," Daniel Radcliffe says. "I have friends who never read books, and so when they ask me what they should pick up first, I always give them this one. I tell them there are some books that are like drugs, and will give you a quick hit, but if you want something that will stay with you and resonate for a long while afterward, then try this. I read it for school, and it speaks to the power of the book that I could analyze the bugger out of it and still not fall out of love with it."
— As told to Naomi Barr