View From The Glen

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Book Nerd

I am shamelessly stealing this from Finola. In the past week, it's been making the rounds on Facebook and apparently all of my friends think I am a Book Nerd because I have been tagged a half dozen times or more already. According to the BBC, most people will only have read 6 of the 100 books listed here. I find that hard to believe because my kids have read 6: Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Alice in Wonderland, The Wind in the Willows, Narnia, Anne of Green Gables, Winnie the Pooh, A Christmas Carol, Charlotte's Web, The Faraway Tree, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Make that 11 - my kids have read 11.

You are supposed to bold the ones you have read and italicize ones you never finished. So on the one hand I feel smug because I have read 75 of these (76 if you count the sneaky one I added for one that was missing at # 26). On the other hand I am scratching my head a bit:
  • Why are Hamlet and the Complete Works of Shakespeare both listed? Ditto for The Lion, the Wich and the Wardrobe and the Narnia chronicles.
  • How did the slightly obscure Folk of the Faraway Tree by Enid Blyton make the list when there are so many great books for children that are more relevant. (I personally own and like this book, but am puzzled at its inclusion on the top 100).
  • What's with Bridget Jones? Top 1oo? Seriously? And ahead of Oliver Twist?
  • How come Lord of the Rings, Shakespeare, Harry Potter etc only count as one book?
  • What happened to number 26? I added a book - a perennial favourite of mine, Howard's End by EM Forster. There were others I could have added instead, but I Forster was unrepresentated and he is British (and it's a British list)
One of my earliest posts was on book lists, so if you read that you know I am not a huge fan of them. But I did enjoy reading down this list, and reliving the memories some of the books conjured up.

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen (always a good one)
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien (kids love this, I didn't - preferred movie and I don't say that often)
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte (coming out this sprint as a movie. I own 5 copies of this book)
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling (Love this - my kids don't. Weirdly)
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte (1st book I downloaded to my Ipod - because it was cheap)
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell (Andrew's Favourite book - right up there with The Road)
9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman (rushed out and bought these when the church kicked up a fuss. OTherwise probably would not have bothered. They're ok.)
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens (I'm a huge Dickens fan)
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott (Ug. I can't re-read this now. The March girls drive me crazy!)
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare (Especially the histories and MacBeth)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier (I read Du Maurier when I want chilling atmosphere)
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 (a boyfriend bought me this for Christmas when I wanted jewellry. Sigh. I was young and shallow then)
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams (Read this so I could get my husband's jokes and obscure references. Same reason I saw Star Wars)
26. Howard's End - E.M. Forster  
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky (I just remember Stu-Bob's philosophy class)
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 (I was on a Russian kick for a while. Read everything - in translation)
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 (I prefer Return of the Native. Must re-read)
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding (this kept me up all night when I was about 13)
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 (I am Elinor, according to this. And then there's Brandon!)
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
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


Andrea said...

I like your addition of Howard's End. Everyone should read that. I can't understand why Barbara Pym isn't on this list. "Excellent Women" is one of my all time favorite books, but really I love anything by her. I read them over and over and laugh out loud each time, as if I've never read them before. Well, I don't laugh at "Quartet in Autumn," but pretty much everything else. She'll probably always be considered a "minor" writer, but she's great and pure and, best of all, funny.

Laura said...

I like your #26 Howard's End...I loved A Room with a View. I find it hard to believe most people have only read 6 books, so many on the list we had to read in school.

Julie said...

wow. 76. impressive. i'm at 36. i guess you aren't a fan of Gabriel Garcia Marquez? loved those two books.

thanks for stopping by my blog. and good luck to you with nablopomo. i have to admit ti's getting a little long. but have to see it to the end. it's so close!!

Pam said...

Fun to browse through the list. Some great and diverse reads there. Like your comment about #25. Too true.

Finola said...

I love that you stole this, and wow - 76!!

After doing a bit more research, it seems this list has been evolving over time, a bit like broken telephone. I suspect people have been substituting books along the way that they felt should have been on the list.

Julie said...

Though no-where near the number that you have read - and not a true reader anyway - even I have read more than six. What does this say about most people, what age group were they looking at for that number.
Have not read Howard's End but definately saw the movie a few times, as well as the other period movies at that time - Room With a View and Lady Jane. Must have been the influence of my friends.