Fall is the perfect time to dive into dark academia books. These are books with an emphasis in knowledge, literature, and the arts but with much darker tones and can be somewhat pessimistic towards humanity, though I find them inspiring and cozy.
- The Secret History by Donna Tart
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.15
At a college in New England, a group of misfits and their professor discover a new way of thinking that goes beyond the borders of morality.
- If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.22
Oliver Marks is getting out of jail after a ten year sentence for murder that he may or may not be guilty for. When he gets out he meets the man who put him there, Detective Colborne, who wants to know what really happened a decade ago.
- Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.04
Alex isn’t a likely candidate for Yale. Having been raised by a hippie mom and dropping out of school early to enter a world of drugs, she might have never made it to college at all. By age twenty, she’s the sole survivor of a multiple homicide. In the hospital, she’s offered a chance to study at Yale with a full ride so long as she monitors one of the univeristy’s secret societies, an occult grup that is much more sinister than it seems.
- The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.82
The Alexandrian Society is a secret society of magic academicians. They are caretakers of the world’s lost knowledge. Each decade, the world’s six most uniquely talented magicians are selected to go through a year of intiation. Five will be chosen–one will be eliminated.
- The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.11
Dorian makes a deal with the devil to stay youthful and beautiful at the cost of his soul portrayed in his picture.
- Vicious by V.E. Schwab
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.23
Victor and Eli were college roommates. Their senior year, their shared interests leads to reseatch on adrenaline, near-death experiences, and the supernatural. But in their experiments, things go horribly wrong. Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison to find his old friend with the aid of a young girl. Eli is on a mission to destroy super-powered people with the help of his sidekick. Which dark side will win?
- Bunny by Mona Awad
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.58
Samantha is an outcast in her MFA program. She is repelled by the rest of her writing cohort, a clique of rich girls who call each other “bunny.” But when Samantha is invited to the bunnies’ “Smut Salon,” she is drawn there. There at the ritualistic workshop, the blur between fiction and reality becomes even more obscured.
- The Maidens by Alex Michaelides
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.63
Fosca is a Greek Tragedy professor and a murderer, Mariana is sure of it. But he’s adored by everyone–including a secret society of female students known as The Maidens. Mariana is a group therapist who becomes fixated on The Maidens when one member, her niece, is found murdered.
- A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.01
Schoolomance is a school for the magically gifted where failure means literal death. Until a new student, El, starts to unlock too many secrets. She could easily kill the monsters in the school but her dark power might also be the death of all of them.
- A Lesson in Vengance by Victoria Lee
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.61
Felicity always thought of Dalloway School as home until the death of her girlfriend. Now, a year later, she’s returned to graduate, rooming in the dormitory hautned by the spirits of the Dalloway Five. Felicity used to be drawn to the darkness at the school but now she wants to leave it behind, even though the new girl won’t let her. Finally, Felicity agrees to help her research the Dalloway Five.
- Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson
Average Goodreads Rating: 3.99
Ellingham Academy is a private school in Vermont. Shortly after the school’s opening, its founder and wife were kidnapped. The only clue left behind was a list of ways to murder someone signed with the psedonym “truly devious.” Stevie is about to start her first year at the academy and she plans on solving the cold case. She doesn’t plan the return of Truly, Devious as the case starts to get warm again.