Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Reading Life

The BBC predicts that most people have only read 6 of the following books. You bold the books you have read and put those you started but did not finish in italics. Then tag me and other people as usual for these things...


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
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 by Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoevsky
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
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 - A.A. 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’s 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 Inferno – Dante
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 - E.B. 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 (I thought this book was total shit, but read it anyway).
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

I can't seem to count this evening.  I get started and Marley does something naughty and I get distracted.  I can only say I've been a voracious reader.  But for roughly the past four years I haven't been able to read a single book.  I think cataracts might have been the problem.  I have just had one eye fixed and I'm getting ready to schedule the other. My request has been to be able to read without reading glasses.


Jerry Critter said...

I hope your request is granted. There are still some great books on your list that you have not read.

Utah Savage said...

Oh, I haven't begun to list the books I've read, Jerry. I'm just responding to a meme about these particular books. Someone on Facebook sent this list to me and asked me to make bold each book on the list I'd read.

The Blog Fodder said...

That is a very impressive list of great books you have read. I hope your other eye surgery turns out well so you can get back at it again.

no_slappz said...

Not surprisingly, the BBC shows its British literary chauvinism with this list of books, which is ridiculously overweighted with the output of British writers.

Not one title from Mark Twain, Ernest Hemingway, Honore de Balzac, Saul Bellow, Herman Hesse, Thomas Mann, Norman Mailer, Philip Roth, Marcel Proust, Aleksandr Solzhenitzin and Miguel Cervantes, to name a few.

Meanwhile, some of the titles on the list do not belong in the company of the truly great works that also appear.

The number of books on the list I've read is 30.

Nan said...

I've seen this list before -- it's an odd mix, and is, IIRC, based on a survey the BBC did of its listeners asking them to list the best books of all time. That would explain the lack of non-British authors. It also explains the odd mix of adult, young adult, and children's books.

Of the books on the list that I've read, the ones I thought were absolute crap were the Harry Potter (got talked into reading one, and that was one too many).

Anonymous said...

I've read 48 on that list, but succeeded with zero of the Jane Austen titles. Nor do I intend to amend that particular lack.

Utah Savage said...

I agree it's a shitty list. I read children's when I was teaching pre-school to snotty little professors kids in Fayetteville, Arkansas one year. I taught "drama" and dance. The dance was easy, I taped good rousing music like Sonny Terry and Brownie Magee and the kids danced with wild abandon. Drama took some directing. I read the really good kids books so I could tap into what the kids might want to act out. I encouraged them to use creative language and of course this led to their making up swear words to embarrass their parents with. It was actually quite fun.

I had no interest in the Harry Potter books or the Bible. I'm beginning to think the Harry Potter books will end up out selling the Bible. I'd bet my life 99% of those claiming to have read the Bible are lying about it; not so the Harry Potter books.

Jerry Critter said...

One thing I like about the Harry Potter books is that they get better as the series goes along rather than subsequent ones not being as good as the first one.

Beach Bum said...

I've read about 20 of those on the list. Strangely enough I did not enjoy Gatsby like I thought, for me it was beyond depressing.

And I wouldn't give anything by Dan Brown a second thought. Not that I object to Brown's work for any silly religious reasons, I just don't like his writing.

Grapes of Wrath and To Kill a Mockingbird are my favorites but Dune and anything by Dickens are close behind.

Worst of all, no Conroy being listed insults my Southern pride.

Cirze said...

I got about 62 at second count (forgot where I was and had to start over the first time).

Read all the Austen, Brontes, Tolkien, Hardy, Eliot, Joyce, Conan Doyle, Conrad, Nabokov, Fitzgerald, Lee (ha ha), and almost all of the Shakespeare, Dostoyevsky, Tolstoy, Steinbeck, Alcott, Dickens, Carroll, Lewis, Milne, Orwell, Marques, Rushdie, Flaubert, Zola and Du Maurier.

But where are the Virginia Woolf, Borges and John Updike selections? (And many, many more.)

Found Rowling and Brown laughably unreadable. Couldn't make it out of the first chapter. And I'm past the age when I can make myself read badly written plot summaries so I'll never know the joys of their later works I guess.

Yes, I threw away my youth.

On reading.

Thanks for the lovely, intellectual memories.