Intergenerational Novels: Books that Connect Generations

When we came up with the idea for our Lifetime of Reading Challenge, our primary goal was to encourage you – our readers – to read books that explore the joys and challenges of each phase of life. Throughout this reading challenge, we’ve seen the world through the eyes of characters of all different ages. Now, we’re excited to read about relationships between characters of different generations, emphasizing books about intergenerational friendships.

Connecting Characters of Different Generations

This book list embraces the goal of the Lifetime of Reading Challenge by featuring books that connect characters from different generations! A few of the titles on our list are books about intergenerational relationships within families (like between grandparents and grandchildren). However, many other books explore different generations’ characteristics through unexpected friendships.

What is the Meaning of Intergenerational?

The definition of Intergenerational, as it relates to literature, refers to a book involving characters of different age groups. More specifically, in acadmeic research terms, according to Professor Feliciano Villar, intergeneration is defined as “the involvement of members of two or more generations in activities that could potentially make them aware of different perspectives.”

What Type of Books Are on This List?

In selecting titles for our list, we’ve focused primarily (but not exclusively) on contemporary stories that feature intergenerational friendships between characters that are more than a few decades apart in age. We’ve curated a diverse list of recommended books, ranging from literary fiction to lighter reads. In addition to reflecting a wide range of life experiences, the main characters also vary in ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, class, background, lifestyle, and more.

Books that Explore the Characteristics of Different Generations

More Books to Consider

Because intergenerational relationships are such a beloved storyline, many of the books on the 607080, and 90-100-something lists would also fit this month’s prompt. In many cases, it was hard to decide where to slot books. So, feel free to revisit those lists as well. 

We hope you enjoyed this book list and found several books to add to your TBR (to be read list). If you’re choosing a book for our reading challenge, you are also welcome to read any other book that meets the challenge prompt.

If you have a suggestion for a book that you think would be a great addition to this list, please fill out this form.

You can read all about the Lifetime of Reading Challenge and sign up for a free printable challenge book tracker here.


Comments on: Intergenerational Novels: Books that Connect Generations

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  1. Louise Forman says:

    Have You Seen Luis Velez by Catherine Ryan Hyde should absolutely be on this list! (I know it’s on the 90s list.)

  2. Antoniette Barracato says:

    The Brilliant Life of Eudora Honeysett by Annie Lyons also works for this month.

    1. Melissa George says:

      That’s one of our favorites! We have Eudora on the 80-something list, but she’s a great fit here as well.

  3. Monica S. says:

    Great list of books!