Reading List

We talk about books a lot on the podcast; we do, after all, discuss the literary influences in works of pop culture, as well as read a lot of books in our research for the show.

Here is a running list of every book or literary work we’ve ever mentioned on Pop DNA (alphabetical by author).


  • Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Jane Austen and Seth Graeme-Smith
  • The Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum
  • Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
  • Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
  • The Girl With All the Gifts by M. R. Carey
  • The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
  • Bridget Jones’ Diary by Helen Fielding
  • Beastly by Alex Flinn
  • Starship Troopers by Robert A. Heinlein
  • The Woman in Black by Susan Hill
  • Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge
  • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
  • Ayesha At Last by Uzma Jalaluddin
  • Pet Sematary by Stephen King
  • Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
  • The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
  • The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis
  • The Giver by Lois Lowry
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
  • Wicked by Gregory Maguire
  • Beauty by Robin McKinley
  • Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley
  • Uprooted by Naomi Novik
  • Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Renison
  • Galax-Arena by Gillian Rubinstein
  • The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
  • The Beast’s Heart by Leife Shallcross
  • Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld
  • Hunted by Meagan Spooner
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker
  • Battle Royale by Koushun Takami
  • Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
  • The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien
  • Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
  • Beauty and the Beast by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villenueve
  • Heartstone by Elle Katharine White
  • Slayer by Kiersten White
  • Pride by Ibi Zoboi

Drama, Short Fiction, and Poetry

  • Much Ado About Mean Girls by Ian Doescher
  • William Shakespeare’s Star Wars by Ian Doescher
  • “The Lottery” by Shirley Jackson
  • Matt & Ben by Mindy Kaling and Brenda Withers
  • The Crucible by Arthur Miller
  • Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
  • “The Vampyre” by John Polidori
  • Hamlet by William Shakespeare
  • Macbeth by William Shakespeare
  • A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare
  • Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
  • Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
  • Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare
  • The Prose Edda by Snorri Sturluson
  • “A Modest Proposal” by Jonathan Swift


  • Vampires, Burial, and Death by Paul Barber
  • The Anatomy of Revolution by Crane Brinton
  • Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl by Carrie Brownstein
  • The Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph Campbell
  • The Monuments Men by Robert M. Edsel
  • How to Be a Heroine by Samantha Ellis
  • Caliban and the Witch by Silvia Federici
  • Bossypants by Tina Fey
  • Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? by Mindy Kaling
  • Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
  • The Secret History of Wonder Woman by Jill Lepore
  • Yes Please by Amy Poehler
  • A Natural History of the Romance Novel by Pamela Regis
  • The Devil in Massachusetts by Marion Starkey
  • Queen Bees and Wannabes by Rosalind Wiseman

Book Lists and Reading Challenges

Rhonda’s favorite Georgette Heyer novels

  • The Grand Sophy
  • Bath Tangle
  • Arabella

Erin’s favorite Sarah Dessen novels

  • Once and For All
  • Saint Anything
  • Along for the Ride

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