Saturday, November 27, 2010

How well read are you?

I was catching up with my favorite blogs this afternoon, and came across the following, posted on the blog Dog-Eared & Bookmarked.  The blogger, Cyndi, got it from yet another blog, Everything Distils Into Reading, whose creator, Gautami Tripathy, has graciously given permission to post this on other blogs.

I have to point out one small detail, however.  There are really more than 100 books on this list.  For example, the Harry Potter series is listed as if it consisted of only one book, when everyone knows that each of the seven books of the series was published separately.  The Lord of the Rings, although one book, was first published in three separate volumes, The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, and The Return of the King.  This has become a publishing tradition, since the entire book is a pretty unwieldy thing to handle.  Therefore, it's technically considered a trilogy.  As for The Chronicles of Narnia, it can be considered as seven separate books, although it has also been published as one volume containing all of the seven books.  Interestingly, this list mentions the entire collection as one book, as well as one of the seven, separately.  It's The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardbrobe, which is the first book in the Chronicles.  Another example is The Complete Works of Shakespeare, also listed as one book (I have seen it in bookstores), while one of The Bard's plays, Hamlet, is listed separately as well.   Last but definitely not least, the book listed as Inferno is one of three making up Dante's Divine Comedy, which I've seen sold both as one book and three separate ones, although it is considered one book.

So where does that leave the reader who, like me, has perused at least one "book" which is really a series of books?  I think each of those books should be counted.  That's only logical.   Okay, then....I can say I've read 30 books from the list, since I'm including the three in The Lord of the Rings trilogy, as well as the seven in the Harry Potter series.  I haven't read any of the Narnia books, so that's not a problem. 

There!  Now that's settled!  Also, there are five books on the list that I started and never finished.  A few, I'm embarrassed to admit, I have never heard of before.  There are a couple of others, like Dracula, that I have absolutely no interest in reading, and I am not at all ashamed to say so!

So here's the list, with thanks to Cyndi & Gautami!  How well did you do?

The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here.
• Copy this list.
• Bold those books you’ve read in their entirety.
• Italicize the ones you started but didn’t finish or read only an excerpt from.
• Tag other book nerds.

Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
Harry Potter series – J.K. Rowling
To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

The King James Bible
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
Nineteen Eighty-Four (1984) - George Orwell
His Dark Materials - Phillp Pullman
Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
Little Women – Louisa M. Alcott 
Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
Catch-22 – Joseph Heller
Complete Works of Shakespeare

Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien

Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk

Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger 
The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

Middlemarch – George Eliot

Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy

The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh

Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
David Copperfield – Charles Dickens 

Chronicles of Narnia – C.S. Lewis
Emma -Jane Austen
Persuasion – Jane Austen
The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – C.S. Lewis 
The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne

Animal Farm – George Orwell
The DaVinci Code – Dan Brown
One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving 
The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
Anne of Green Gables – L.M. Montgomery
Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
Lord of the Flies – William Golding
Atonement – Ian McEwan
Life of Pi – Yann Martel
Dune – Frank Herbert
Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon

A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
The Secret History – Donna Tartt
The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold

Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
On The Road – Jack Kerouac
Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding

Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
Moby Dick – Herman Melville
Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
Dracula – Bram Stoker
The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
Ulysses – James Joyce
The Inferno – Dante
Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
Germinal – Emile Zola
Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
Possession – A.S. Byatt

Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
The Color Purple – Alice Walker
The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White
The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom

Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle 
The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad

The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
The Wasp Factory – Ian Banks
Watership Down – Richard Adams
A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas

Hamlet – William Shakespeare
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl
Les Miserables – Victor Hugo


  1. Hiya!

    Thanks for saying my blog was one of your favorites! That made my day :)

    So cool that you have read so many of these books. I'm working on this list now. Hopefully, by next year the results will be different.

  2. Hiya back!

    You're very welcome! Yes, indeed, I think your blog is FANTASTIC!! I'm glad I made your day!! Having someone tell me this makes MY day!!!

    As for the books on the list, well...I have to try to read more. Like you, I'm hoping that I'll have more of them under my belt by next year.


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