View Sidebar
Not a book geek, alas

Not a book geek, alas

There’s this Facebook/Livejournal/blog meme passed to me from aamused, kiri (and no doubt others), saying:

“The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books here. How do your reading habits stack up?
Instructions: Copy this into your NOTES. Look at the list and put an ‘x’ after those you have read. Tag other book nerds.”

(Note that the BBC’s own list of the top 100 books as voted for by the British public are very different to what you see below)

Alas, it’s going to be a tough one for me to fill out, since the pleasure of books is something I seem to have lost as the years have gone by, thanks to my lack of an attention span. Time was, I could start a book at 9pm, and finish it only to realise it was dawn outside and it was 5am. Nowadays, I glance at my watch when watching a sitcom…

But here goes with the book meme, and the list of books I have/haven’t read…


1 Pride and Prejudice
2 The Lord of the Rings
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte – X (it was on the school syllabus!)
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte -X (so was this!)
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell – X (hurrah, a book I CHOSE to read!)
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy (and this!)
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger (might go see the film, mind!)
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 – Douglas Adams (of course I’ve read it!)
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 – X (was forced to read it, HATED it! The most pointless longest opening sentence of any English work outside of a Jeremy Clarkson rant, if you ask me)
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres (erm… I saw the film?)
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 García Márquez
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
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood (ought to though!)
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding (read it at school, and I still think that we’d be savages after a week of anarchy)
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
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 – 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
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

So… that’s 10% of the list. Not too bad I s’pose…


  • Herms

    Curious Incident is really funny. It's like a guide to the thought processes of an Aspie.

  • I've read 24 off that list. Dunno what that makes me. i wish I had more time to read books

  • The trouble with any list based on votes by members of the public is that the results are inevitably quite mainstream. It's the same with top 100 albums or whatever – I love music, but I'd rather go deaf than have to sit through Bat Out Of Hell or Hotel California.

    I read quite a lot each year, but have probably only read about a third of those books. I don't think I could bear to read Vanity Fair again, and I'm unlikely to bother reading the Faraway Tree collection now (I'm 33). I've probably read about half of Shakespeare's plays, and much of The Bible is boring. Does that make me less of a person? Of course not. It's just that I happen to fall outside the average tastes of the population (or what people claim to like, at least). Plus, I don't read so many novels these days, and I can't see any non-fiction on that list. Don't sweat it.

  • Sheff

    I've read 28 of this list, including a couple I'd not want to admit to. There's a couple of overlaps though – ie, isn't "The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe" one of the "Chronicles of Narnia" ( I counted twice as I read all those books as a kid), and I'm sure "Hamlet" is one of the "Complete Works of Shakespeare".

    There's a few on the list that I started reading and didn't get very far with, but I didn't count those!

Leave a reply

%d bloggers like this: