Mindy Kaling told Entertainment Weekly that her favorite book from her school days is Edith Wharton's The House of Mirth, which she read in ninth grade and, she said, "changed my life."
She explained her love for the book: "It's so current . . . Listen, I freaking love Jane Austen, love Charlotte Brontë, I love stories about frivolous families, and you know, sisterly rivalries — I love that. But House of Mirth so describes the feeling of being trapped in a time of not wanting to get married but sort of having to, and having one chance out of it and the tragic side of that. Because in the Jane Austen books, they usually end up getting married, right in the nick of time, and in House of Mirth, it's what happens when you don't. And she didn’t even want to! She would have been OK not doing it."