Friday, 5 December 2008


There are a couple of book memes going around, so I have arbitrarily chosen this list from The Big Read, because it makes me look better read than the other I've seen (Time magazine's 100 greatest novels 1923 to 2005). Green for those I've read, blue for those where I've read another book by the same author (these weren't the original rules, but like I said, I'm being arbitrary):

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4. Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6. The Bible (all of it, barring the Apocrypha, and bits of that too. Really)
7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare (but I have read quite a few plays)
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye - J D Salinger
19. The Time Traveller’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams (Some of it - but I have no idea how many there are these days, so certainly not all)
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34. Emma - Jane Austen
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis (shurely shome mistake?)
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48. The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52. Dune - Frank Herbert
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones’ Diary - Helen Fielding
69. Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
73.The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75. Ulysses - James Joyce
76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession - AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87. Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94. Watership Down - Richard Adams
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

Hello? Is there anyone there?

I blame my teenage obsession with the nineteenth century novel. It's taken me ten years to begin to catch up with the twentieth century.


Silas said...

There are five Hitchhiker novels, plus a short story (Young Zaphod Plays it Safe). There are also two Dirk Gently novels, plus the Salmon of Doubt.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps unsurprisingly, my list is very similar to yours. I think there are perhaps 10 differences (and I can't believe you haven't read Sherlock Holmes. Really none of them?)


Vivienne said...

Really no Sherlock Holmes. There's a complete volume lying around somewhere that came with the husband, but I haven't quite got to it yet.

Remember, the first detective novel I ever read was 'The Nine Tailors'.

Kendra said...

It worries me that most of the ones you haven't read were required reading at school for me. Or of the ones that weren't required reading, many were ones I absolutely loved reading on my own.

It also worries me how many of the books on the list that I *haven't* read. I've lost my reading-attention-span... :(

Vivienne said...

It may well be a reflection of how insular English Literature can be in British schools - the only non-British book we read before A-levels was 'Of Mice and Men', which I think I would have enjoyed a lot more with a bit of context.

Most of these weren't set at school though - four years of compulsory English Lit only amounted to one book a term, so 12 in total. For A-levels we went up to 2 books a term, so that gives another 12, and at that age the days had 27 hours and I had a tendency to read everything else an author had written. It still didn't necessarily take me far outside these islands, which is something that I've been working on since - you didn't see me in the airport on the way home, desperate for a book to read but refusing to buy several that I wanted to read because I was in America and I was damned if I was going to buy a British book in America. I ended up with a volume of short stories by Barbara Kingsolver, an author I love.

Coming on January 1 2009 - the complete list of What I Read in 2008 (123 books and counting), which is slightly less arbitrary as a guide to who I am.