In no particular order . . .
  1. Ella Enchanted
    The movie from a few years back shouldn't be taken into account when it comes to this book. Gail Carson Levine captures the fairy tale with a wonderful twist. Levine paints a wonderful world with a strong female lead who could be any person's role model.
  2. The Restaurant at the End of the Universe
    Not strictly the first one in the series, but this is my favorite one. Douglas Adams is hilarious. Really, any "Hitchiker's Guide" would do.
  3. Horseradish
    Lemony Snicket gives snippets of life advice. Enough said.
  4. The Importance of Being Earnest
    Oscar Wilde paints the picture of upper class life in the late 1800s. It's a hilarious play about ... Well, the importance of being earnest.
  5. Emma
    Now, this isn't an afternoon read, but what would a list of books be without a Jane Austen novel? Emma is my personal favorite; sorry Mr. Darcy, but I'm a Mr. Knightley kind of gal.