100 Books To Read … Or die trying

I have decided to start this blog mainly because I miss writing. Perhaps it is because I just graduated and am seeking the comfort of previous pursuits (ie English assignments in high school), or simply because I now have far more time on my hands.

Either way, it is high time I read some literature. Although I normally shy away from what I term “meaningful” books (reasons being that I do not enjoy them either because they make me cry [I believe that Oscars judges in particular are plagued by affective fallacy] or contain boring subject matter), I believe that I can no longer call myself an educated person until I have read some of the literary greats.

As such, I have found one of those 100 books you need to read before you die lists and ticked off a few books. Much like the movie Julia & Julia (which I have never seen, mind, as cooking and cooking shows are my own particular brand of hell), my quest is to read these books. Ok, so nothing like the movie.

Nevertheless, here we go:

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (ticked off and reviewed here!)

2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien

3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 (I think I’ll make this count as Midsummer Night’s Dream as I’ve read R&J and Macbeth, & Hamlet is listed below)

15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier (ticked off and reviewed here!)

16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien

17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk

18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger (ticked off and reviewed here!)

19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams (ticked off and reviewed here and the sequel here!)

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 (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 (ticked off and reviewed here!)

46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery (ticked off and reviewed here!)

47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 – Mark Haddon

60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck

62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 (ticked off and reviewed here!)

69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie (ticked off and reviewed here!)

70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville

71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens (ticked off and reviewed here!)

72 Dracula – Bram Stoker (ticked off and reviewed here!)

73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett

74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson

75 Ulysses – James Joyce

76 The Inferno – Dante (ticked off and reviewed here!)

77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome

78 Germinal – Emile Zola

79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray

80 Possession – AS Byatt (ticked off and reviewed here!)

81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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 (ticked off and reviewed here!)

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

Despite this, I feel like a good few classics are missing, so this blog will here be a bit of a review of the above literature and some others. I may have been, possibly, partly, inspired by Twitterature: The World’s Greatest Books Retold Through Twitter (although I’m not retelling the story, but only because I’m jealous I didn’t think of it first).

PS Am certainly not excited by the excessive amounts of Jane Austen and Charles Dickens on the list – the former because I dislike romance novels, especially ones featuring impotent females; the latter because I used Great Expectations as a form of sleeping medication during that one school term.

PPS I do not intend to read the bible.

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4 responses to “100 Books To Read … Or die trying

  1. How was the Lord of the Ring series? I didn’t quite get past page 5 hahaha.. and hence didn’t bother to watch the movies either :/ I feel like I’m missing out on something good :/

    • The movies are so much better than the books trust me!

      I only read them because only the first movie had been released at the time and I wanted to satisfy my curiosity.

      Also, The Hobbit was more entertaining than the LOTR trilogy (if you’re into fantasy)

  2. Hi Ilona – this is a cool blog and a great idea. Well done. Only thing missing is a fabulous picture of your good self.

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