Another list of the top 100 books

We all love a good list, don’t we? I think what I love most is how they’re all different. This latest comes from World Book Night in the UK, and is compiled from a list that we – you and I – have all contributed of our top ten books that we’d like to share with others. Weighted for frequency, the list they’ve received is available at the link above – and, I’ve reproduced it here, with my usual indications as to whether I’ve read them or not. Feel free to weigh in.

I’m amused to note that my have-read-it stats fall off sharply as the list goes on; I’ve read 7 of the top 10, 10 of the top 20, and only 3 of the bottom 20.

How many have you read? Do you agree or strongly disagree with any of these? I certainly see a lot of my favorites (see my list of 100) on there, and also some I strongly disliked (ahem Cormac McCarthy).

Bold = I’ve read it (or if it’s linked to my review… I’ve read it)
Italicized = I’ve started the book, but never finished
neither = I haven’t picked it up.
New indicator: **for those that are definitely on my list (even before this list).

1    To Kill a Mockingbird    Harper Lee
2    Pride and Prejudice    Jane Austen
3    The Book Thief    Markus Zusak
4    Jane Eyre    Charlotte Bronte
5    The Time Traveler’s Wife    Audrey Niffenegger
6    The Lord of the Rings    J. R. R. Tolkien
7    The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy    Douglas Adams
8    Wuthering Heights    Emily Bronte
9    Rebecca    Daphne Du Maurier
10    The Kite Runner    Khaled Hosseini
11    American Gods    Neil Gaiman
12    A Thousand Splendid Suns    Khaled Hosseini
13    Harry Potter Adult Hardback Boxed Set    J. K. Rowling
14    **The Shadow of the Wind    Carlos Ruiz Zafon
15    The Hobbit    J. R. R. Tolkien
16    One Day    David Nicholls
17    Birdsong    Sebastian Faulks
18    The Help    Kathryn Stockett
19    Nineteen Eighty-Four    George Orwell
20    Good Omens    Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
21    The Notebook    Nicholas Sparks
22    The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo    Stieg Larsson
23    The Handmaid’s Tale    Margaret Atwood
24    The Great Gatsby    F. Scott Fitzgerald
25    Little Women    Louisa M. Alcott
26    Memoirs of a Geisha    Arthur Golden
27    The Lovely Bones    Alice Sebold
28    Atonement    Ian McEwan
29    Room    Emma Donoghue
30    Catch-22    Joseph Heller
31    We Need to Talk About Kevin    Lionel Shriver
32    His Dark Materials    Philip Pullman
33    Captain Corelli’s Mandolin    Louis De Bernieres
34    The Island    Victoria Hislop
35    Neverwhere    Neil Gaiman
36    The Poisonwood Bible    Barbara Kingsolver
37    The Catcher in the Rye    J. D. Salinger
38    Chocolat    Joanne Harris
39    Never Let Me Go    Kazuo Ishiguro
40    The Five People You Meet in Heaven    Mitch Albom
41    One Hundred Years of Solitude    Gabriel Garcia Marquez
42    Animal Farm    George Orwell
43    The Pillars of the Earth    Ken Follett
44    The Eyre Affair    Jasper Fforde
45    Tess of the D’Urbervilles    Thomas Hardy
46    Charlie and the Chocolate Factory    Roald Dahl
47    **I Capture the Castle    Dodie Smith
48    The Wasp Factory    Iain Banks
49    Life of Pi    Yann Martel
50    The Road    Cormac McCarthy
51    Great Expectations    Charles Dickens
52    Dracula    Bram Stoker
53    The Secret History    Donna Tartt
54    Small Island    Andrea Levy
55    The Secret Garden    Frances Hodgson Burnett
56    Lord of the Flies    William Golding
57    Persuasion    Jane Austen
58    A Prayer for Owen Meany    John Irving
59    Notes from a Small Island    Bill Bryson
60    **Watership Down    Richard Adams
61    Night Watch    Terry Pratchett
62    Brave New World    Aldous Huxley
63    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time    Mark Haddon
64    Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell    Susanna Clarke
65    The Color Purple    Alice Walker
66    My Sister’s Keeper    Jodi Picoult
67    The Stand    Stephen King
68    Cloud Atlas    David Mitchell
69    The Master and Margarita    Mikhail Bulgakov
70    Anna Karenina    Leo Tolstoy
71    Cold Comfort Farm    Stella Gibbons
72    Frankenstein    Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
73    The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society    Mary Ann Shaffer
74    The Picture of Dorian Gray    Oscar Wilde
75    Gone with the Wind    Margaret Mitchell
76    The Graveyard Book    Neil Gaiman
77    The Woman in White    Wilkie Collins
78    The Princess Bride    William Goldman
79    A Suitable Boy    Vikram Seth
80    Perfume    Patrick Suskind
81    The Count of Monte Cristo    Alexandre Dumas
82    The God of Small Things    Arundhati Roy
83    Middlemarch    George Eliot
84    Dune    Frank Herbert
85    Wolf Hall    Hilary Mantel
86    Stardust    Neil Gaiman
87    Lolita    Vladimir Nabokov
88    Midnight’s Children    Salman Rushdie
89    Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone    J. K. Rowling
90    Shantaram    Gregory David Roberts
91    The Remains of the Day    Kazuo Ishiguro
92    Possession: A Romance    A. S. Byatt
93    Tales of the City    Armistead Maupin
94    Kafka on the Shore    Haruki Murakami
95    The Magus    John Fowles
96    The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas    John Boyne
97    A Fine Balance    Rohinton Mistry
98    Alias Grace    Margaret Atwood
99    Norwegian Wood    Haruki Murakami
100   The Wind-up Bird Chronicle    Haruki Murakami

7 Responses

  1. I’ve read 25, but they seem to be pretty well distributed throughout the list. 5 in the top 10. 7 in the top 20. 2 in the bottom 20. 16 of the ones in the middle 60. Fun list!

  2. I do love a list! I’ve read 34, and half of Great Expectations (been reading it on and off since last December!)

    • Simon, I look forward to reading your thoughts on Great Expectations – I don’t think you’ve written about it yet? I read it in high school and remember it being difficult but worthwhile.

  3. I’ve read 25 of these. Some of them I have no intention of ever reading, and when those show up on lists like this I get all “book snobby.”

    If I have time today, I’m going to do this on my Tumblr. I always intend to with these lists, but then I never do …

    • Lol. I know what you mean. This one probably leans more pop-culture than most (thus, less snobby, thus, leaning us in a snobbier direction in response) because it’s compiled from regular people’s submissions. Let me guess: Nicholas Sparks?? 🙂

      Hope it makes it up on your tumblr!

      • Ding ding ding! The Notebook is definitely one I have no desire to read. Also The Five People You Meet in Heaven and, believe it or not, The Help.

  4. I am with you 3 for 3, Valerie. I believe it all day long! Have you been following the Gone-With-the-Wind-reminiscent controversy about the portrayals of blacks vs. whites in The Help? It surprises me how the public moons over a book with such obvious red flags, in 2011. Sigh.

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