Florence Pugh's Favorite Books Are An Adventurous Reading List

When our velvet crop queen Florence Pugh picks up a book, she's usually looking for a little rebellion. "My entire life I've always appreciated the slightly cheeky or naughty characters in books or in films," she admitted to Junkee in 2020. "I think it's a piece of us we can all appreciate, because I feel like there's an inner bratty child in all of us." And, because of that, Pugh has developed quite an adventurous reading list.

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Pugh's bookshelf consists of novels from as far back as the 1800s, and she's proven to have quite the eclectic taste when it comes to what she wants to curl up with and get lost in. Case and point? She's read the classic literary tale "Little Women" but considers "The Silence of the Lambs" to be her favorite novel. So, to read like Pugh, you'll need to be ready for quite the varied reading experience. Now that you've been warned, we're sharing some of the novels this star has enjoyed over the years.

The Girls by Emma Cline

Back in 2019, Florence Pugh gave The Guardian one book recommendation. The novel she felt so confident sharing? Emma Cline's "The Girls." The "Oppenheimer" star admitted that, even though she sometimes doesn't finish the books she starts, this is one she couldn't put down. "It's a coming-of-age story ... and I really loved the way bodies are described and the difference that one summer can make when going through puberty," she explained. "That was really beautiful to read. It was nice to spend time with the book and soak it all up."

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The captivating novel is inspired by the notorious Manson family cult, led by the infamous Charles Manson. This story, though, focuses more on the women in the cult than Manson himself, with the fictional character Evie Boyd serving as the protagonist. We follow Evie through her teens as she grows into her association with the dangerous group, finding out how her entanglement with those intent on carrying out horrific crimes becomes increasingly worrying. We'd recommend picking this book up if you like a story with a strong female voice — but be prepared for lethal lust that goes beyond a typical teenage crush.

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

Another book on Florence Pugh's impressive reading list is Frances Hodgson Burnett's "The Secret Garden." Back in 2020, the actor told The New York Times that she'd been encouraged to read the book by her mom and found it had a profound impact on her life. She revealed that she related to the fantasy novel to the point that she actually thought, at one point in time, that she may have been magic like the protagonist, Mary. In the book, we follow Mary as she's determined to find a secret garden she's heard so much about. But once she does, she finds that her life (and the lives of those around her) will never be the same.

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Over on GoodReads, "The Secret Garden" is hugely popular. The heartwarming novel, first released in 1911, has received more than 1.1 million reviews and is averaging at the time of writing with a very impressive 4.16 stars out of five. In one five-star review, a reader shared, "That magical garden. It always completely sparked my imagination, and something I really noticed during this read was how poignant the descriptions of magic are in this book — the magic of nature and friendship and the way thoughts can have such an impact on us."

The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

You may not have been expecting Florence Pugh to throw down the gauntlet and declare "The Silence of the Lambs" as her favorite book after hearing about her love for softer novels like "The Secret Garden," but that's what she did. And it does make a little more sense knowing how much she enjoyed "The Girls." Pugh told Radio Times in 2019 that she couldn't get enough of the dark and twisted story, first released back in 1988, explaining, "'The Silence of the Lambs' is my favourite book, favourite film." Pugh echoed that sentiment to HeyUGuys as well, telling the outlet, "I used to read all the books over and over again."

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A lot of people will already know the horrifying "The Silence of the Lambs" story from the hugely successful 1991 movie starring Anthony Hopkins, but for those unsure if this is the book for them, it's a must-read for anyone who enjoys the thrill of being inside the mind of a psychopathic killer. One thing you may not know about this story? "The Silence of the Lambs" is actually the sequel novel to "Red Dragon," in which the disturbing and incredibly dangerous Dr. Hannibal Lecter also appears.

Dune by Frank Herbert

As one of the stars of "Dune: Part Two," it's probably not a massive shock to know that Florence Pugh is a fan of the books. The novel, which hit shelves all the way back in 1965 (yes, it really was released that long ago!) is set in the far future and sees a family move to an inhospitable planet to farm a drug needed for space travel. The actor revealed that she was reading the first novel in the series via her Instagram account back in 2022. Pugh shared a photo of herself relaxing on the beach with the book (which is also included on Margot Robbie's reading list) resting on her legs alongside the caption, "Dun dun dun..e." Of course, it's very possible this star was conducting some research for her role in the film's sequel, in the form of a summer beach read

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A fan of the story, Pugh has already revealed that she did some reading to prepare for her appearance in "Dune: Part Two" to portray Princess Irulan. "When I read those final few pages, it made me suddenly go, 'Ah, she's far more knowledgeable than I thought she was,' from Princess Irulan's perspective," she shared. It's not clear if she was referring to the book (the movie "Dune: Part Two" is still an adaptation of the first "Dune" book) or the movie's script.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Another book Florence Pugh has shared her love for is "Little Women" by Louisa May Alcott. Appearing on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" in 2019, Pugh revealed that she has fond memories of the book because of her grandmother. Pugh shared on the late-night show that she most related to Amy after reading the novel, revealing, "I think also my gran related to her because I remember when she read the scene where Amy burns Jo's book, and I remember my gran looking up from the book and going 'what a wicked, wicked girl,'" Pugh recalled. "I remember how excited she was about that, and clearly Amy is the one to get behind." The best thing about that? Pugh played the misunderstood Amy in the 2019 movie adaptation, which also starred Emma Watson and Saoirse Ronan.

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For those unfamiliar with the story, it's one of the most iconic novels in literary history. First released back in the 1800s (and with more than 2.2 million ratings on GoodReads) it tells the story of sisters Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy as they go through the trials and tribulations of growing from girls into women. It's a great read for young adults, especially those who have a penchant for historical fiction, and those going through changes of their own. "This book resonates with so many different generations," Pugh explained to The Telegraph.

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