Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A Novel

One of the biggest reasons that I am so excited to graduate this May is that instead of spending my evenings studying or doing homework that time will be open for my own personal reading. I love to read. Read read read. I have been swept away by all kinds of books: I love historical fictions, sci-fi is so cool, I can’t draw myself out of love stories, I live in fantasy, and some of my favorite books are the retellings of old adventures and fairy tales. Nearly every book I have read I have read more than once (my favorites many times more), and, something Mike can attest to, I analyze them to pieces. I finish every book I read, with few exceptions (like Wicked, for example. It got so offensive/pornographic halfway through that I threw it away). I have a difficult time thinking of a book I read that I didn’t like or get something out of.

I’m pretty sure I can attribute my love of reading in part to my sisters. For the first eleven years of my life I was the youngest of six sister readers, which left quite a library at my disposal. Mandy (ten years my senior) would pass a book she had finished onto Julia (three years) who would pass it on to me. This is how I had already read books like Les Miserables before middle school. I realize now that even then I was analyzing the literature. I remember running to the dictionary for help on words and meanings, sometimes just reading the encyclopedias for a day for context, and of course Julia, Valerie, and I would discuss with each other (when we weren’t putting on light shows with out light-up shoes on the top bunk). I also remember how we would be grounded from our bedrooms and from our books because our mom “wanted to see our faces.”

So I’m a reader.

Apparently the BBC believes that most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books listed below. That surprises me, and I kinda don’t believe it. I have read thirty-seven and a half from the list. Half because one of them is the Complete Works of Shakespeare, and I’m pretty sure I’m still short some. I noticed that the majority of the ones I've read are in the first 50. I can’t really say if this is an inclusive list, but how many have you read?

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 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare (a bunch)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD 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 - 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 - 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’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 - 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 Alborn
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


Dawn said...

the lovely bones is such a good book. I recommend it. it's really of emotion

Madison said...

18.5 I am sad that I have read so little good books, ever since I got baptized though I have only read books found at deseret pretty much, I am addicted to those funny mormon fiction books. But there are a lot of books on this list I want to read for the first time or read again!

Madison said...

no i havent read tennis shoes or a samuel series.

eric keith said...

I think I counted around twenty that I've read. We're showing BBC!