Another Book Meme

via Oro at Birch and Maple:

1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.

2) Italicize those you intend to read.

3) Underline (or mark in a different color) the books you LOVE

4) Reprint this list in your blog.

The premise of this exercise is that the National Endowment for the Arts apparently believes that the average American has only read 6 books from the list below.

5) Strikethrough those you hated or couldn’t get through (my addition)

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 (book one only)
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 few only)
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
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 Meany – 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
(Loved it when I was a teenager. Re-read it recently and found it tedious.)
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
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 Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection
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

You might reasonably surmise from this that I can’t stand Charles Dickens.


8 Responses to “Another Book Meme”

  1. 1 Twistie Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 12:18 am

    Okay…so Hamlet is not part of the Complete Works of William Shakespeare and all seven volumes of Harry Potter are one book while Narnia consists of only one volume? This list has been doing some heavy drugs, if you ask me.

    Still, taking it at face value and not adjusting for how some of these books (Lord of the Rings, anyone?) are multiple books, I counted 41 that I’ve read and another three that I started and couldn’t finish reading. I don’t know what it is about chapter four of Watership Down, but I’ve never managed to get past that point. That’s invariably where I get too bored to go on, for some reason.

    And of course this doesn’t include all the other books I’ve read cover to cover…including the ensuing volumes of the Hitchhiker’s Guide series and the Anne of Green Gables series.

    It’s also a somewhat odd list in that some are undisputed classics (Ye olde Dickens, whom I also don’t care to read so much, Eliot, Steinbeck…whom I can’t stand but recognize is recognized as classic) to flashes in the pans. I may adore The Hitchhiker’s Guide, but how important is it in literal terms? How likely is Mitch Albom to last the ages as a Great Author?

    Of course, time could prove me wrong on those. I’m sure there were those at the time who couldn’t imagine bothering to keep the last installment of Nicholas Nickleby because it was just a serial novel in a cheap magazine that nobody would care about in a years’ time.

    Anyway, rambling now. But I’ve read a hell of a lot of that list and have copies of several more of the books on it waiting to be cracked…once I get done re-reading Wyrd Sisters by Terry Pratchett and a couple Anthony Trollope novels.

  2. 2 Natalie Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 12:33 am

    You know, I’m not surprised that the ‘average person’ is not well read. My manager at work admits that the last time he read a book (a book) was in year 10!

    That said, I agree with Twistie that this list is on major crack. How was it generated?

  3. 3 Fatadelic Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 2:15 am

    Yes, it seems to be a bit hotch-potch with what’s on it or not. Some of the books are recent popular ones with debatable literary merit (Dan Brown, I’m talking about you) and it’s very Austen/Dickens heavy with regards to classics. And of course, very UK/USA biased with only 2-3 books coming from other countries (as far as I can tell from a quick browse). Still, it’s an interesting exercise. Here’s another book list (similar meme) for comparison.

  4. 4 Elizabeth Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 7:18 pm


    Thanks for actually striking though some of these–not that I necessarily do or don’t agree with you, but seeing list, after list, after list of nobody admitting to hating or not being able to get though ANY of them, my BS meter was going off, big time.

  1. 1 Holding nothing back… >> Book Meme Trackback on Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 2:23 am
  2. 2 BRIDGING THE GAP >> Read it and weep Trackback on Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 4:37 am
  3. 3 Fabulously Fat College Student >> Reading Rainbow Trackback on Wednesday, 30 July 2008 at 9:39 am
  4. 4 Errantry >> Book Meme: Dodgy Lis Trackback on Thursday, 31 July 2008 at 12:55 pm

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