I am such a sucker for lists of ‘books you should have read’. Mostly because I can fairly smugly score around 50% or more at least. I also like that you can carry them around and ask people ‘have you read this one, or this one…’ and create yourself a little list of ‘books I should read soon’.

I pulled this list off Emma’s blog, and have filled it in (i.e. bolded it) for your interest, or not. It’s really for me - to remind myself that it’s about time again that I read a book that I haven’t read before.

Emma says, “this one is originally from the Big Read. Apparently they reckon most people will have only read 6 of the 100, which I think is astonishing.” I do too.


1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Underline those you intend to read.
3) Italicise the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list so we can try and track down these people who’ve read 6 and force books upon them.

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
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 - well, not all but quite a lot. The interesting ones anyway.
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye - J D 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 - Douglas Adams

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 (audio books count right?)
38. Captain Corelli’dolin - Louis De Bernieres Mans
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 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
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
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-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’ Diary - Helen Fielding (Saw the movie, not really my taste. But I’ve heard the book’s better)
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 (The whole thing. Every single crazy bit of it.)
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 - 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 (haven’t read this, but always wanted to. It’s my favourite show by a huge margin)

57/100 — Not too bad. There’s a lot of books I consider to be ‘missing’ if this is supposed to be a top 100 of all time, like ‘Year of Wonders’ for example. It has reminded me how much I love Margaret Atwood - in small doses - and haven’t read any in a while, and has also reminded me that there are books on my shelf which I have been intending to read for a long time and yet I keep reaching for the old favourites to re-read again and again.

Perhaps I’ll revisit in a year’s time and see if I’ve added any.

How many have you read?

10 Responses to “Meme again…”
  1. lyndsey-jane says:

    love these too, I go into them thinking I’m well read and once completed realise I’ve not read as much as I thought.

  2. carol says:

    I’ve read 61 on that list! Plus some bits, plus some of them more than once.

    That was nearly all in the days before I discovered the fibre arts. Not quite sure what that means!

  3. K says:

    Hoo boy, have I read a lot of those. Not just during the English degree, but many, many of them after I left university, too.

    I love Margaret Atwood. If you’ve not read Oryx & Crake, I recommend it.

  4. janey says:

    I’ve read 52 plus some bits, there are several that I’ve started and left unfinished for some reason and would love to go back and finish now. I’m horrified that expected score is 6, its not as if its a paricularly high brow list.

  5. Amanda Cathleen says:

    *phew* I’ve actually read a couple on the list! I love to read, even though its hard to keep track of where I am in a book with the help of my children!

  6. fibercrone says:

    62 plus a couple more in audio format

  7. Joanne says:

    Uhh, I think 42. It might be more than that, frankly, the dogs were barking and I lost count. :) It’s actually a relief to see books on there that I might one day read, books that have never interested me–and the ones I loved! I can strongly recommend anything by Garcia Marquez, I loved his books…check those out to boost your numbers!

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