What work of literature would you recommend to someone who doesn't like literature?
This is an interesting question and I welcome the opportunity to share an approach to it. First, I would want to know why someone does not like literature? Perhaps they do not know what literature is or they do not want to read anything. Whatever the reason, my suggestion is to look to literature that has been read and enjoyed by readers of all ages for a long time. Whether they are called classics or "the Canon" or something else they hold an appeal for readers that can persuade someone who claims to not like literature. There is a huge variety to choose from so for a start I would recommend not one, but two of my personal favorites, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte or Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll. The latter is a story that won readers among children like the little girl who inspired Charles Dodgson to write it, but it is definitely a book for all ages as I have found rereading it as an adult it has, like most classics, new surprises and wonders for the adult reader. Alice is a marvelous young heroine and it is easy to become immersed in her quandaries as she puzzles her way through Wonderland:
“I wonder if I've been changed in the night. Let me think. Was I the same when I got up this morning? I almost think I can remember feeling a little different. But if I'm not the same, the next question is 'Who in the world am I?' Ah, that's the great puzzle!” ― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
And as a work of literature that demonstrates the power of words and the love of language of the author there are few better than this. However, for the reader that might be more interested in a tale of young girl who learns to live and love in the British countryside there is Jane Eyre. Her indomitable spirit and the way she negotiates the vicissitudes of life make for a great read -- one that is sure to reach the heart of any person who claims to not like literature.