Tuesday, August 12, 2008

The Big Read

I saw this at Tabor's and again at BearNaked and I simply had to do it here being the inveterate reader that I am. And I do love the classics.

"The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they've printed."

1. Look at the list and bold/colourize those you have read.
2. Post the list on your site.
(This can also remind you of some great books to read.)

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkienn
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4. Harry Potter series - J.K. 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 - Joseph Heller

14. Complete Works of Shakespeare
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - J.R.R. 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
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 - C.S. Lewis
34. Emma - Jane Austen

35. Persuasion - Jane Austen
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - C.S. 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 - L.M. 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 Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession - A.S. 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
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

Hmmmm I read a lot of these -- partially because I spent my high school years in advanced English with some incredibly great, challenging teachers and partially because being the nerd/geek that I am, when I was about 16 I made my summer reading project a goal of reading the classics. When I became a mother, I read all the classic stories to the Dynamic Duo. Also, in college, I was a double major in Spanish and English so I read a lot of classics in both languages and still do. If I had to live my life over, I would have a Ph.D. in comparative literature (and have a reading knowledge of French and Russian) and would be a professor of literature hopefully somewhere nice.

Happy Blogging and Reading!!!!!!!!!!!!!



  1. Oh, Kay! Great list. Do read Alica in Wonderland. If you can get your hands on the annotated edition you'll really get a kick out of it.

  2. Does it count if you saw the movie?

  3. I have read a quarter of them (25) many in school. I am actually reading Wurthering Heights right now and The Time Travelor's Wife is on my nightstand to start soon.

    But I have seen even more of the movies. I did the Narnia books as a kid and just loved them.

  4. My tally hit 39. But then I have been a reader since my mom defied my teachers and taught me phonics when I was in first grade. I just had to brag a little. So often on these lists I don't get past 10 or so.

  5. I just love reading and it's great to see that y'all do, too! I suspect that bloggers are a literate bunch!!!!

  6. I have a lot of reading to catch up with you!

    I did post my list too

  7. Naked Bear got the list from one of my postings back on 8/2/08. Its a list put out by just one of the publishing houses, and of those titles that they publish, which explains why so many other great books are not mentioned. I found it interesting that almost the majority of the books you have read on the list, I have not----maybe thats why I enjoy you postings, and find them new and refreshing.

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  9. Actually, I checked out the site where it originated and it was The National Endowment for the Arts -- not a publisher at all -- which is a federal thing I believe. Imagine that! An agency doing something intelligent! I'm not sure what their criteria was but I'm guessing it was done by checking with participating publishers who support their organization on what is most popular.

  10. As I told Tabor, I have done this before, but I can't find it. I might get the time to do it again.

  11. I beat the average. I've read 13 of them.

    What a great list. There are so many on this list I have anted and need to read. Thanks for sharing this, Kay!

  12. Kay
    I would be interested in your thoughts about *The Handmaid's Tale."

    It was one of the most thought provoking novels I have ever read.

    Bear((( )))

  13. I discovered that I am better read than I thought. 53 of the titles under my belt.


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