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A list! Of books! Again!

I meant to do this before, and don't think I got round to it (although I did do a similar one, so I'm a bit confused.) The meme I've seen is: According to the BBC, the average adult has only read six of the Big Read's top 100 books. How many have you read?

But when I go googling for a link for that, it turns out that half the people doing the meme think it's the Big Read list (which had Tolkien at the top) and half of them think it's the (American) NEA's top books list (which doesn't exist), but it's actually - probably - a World Book Day survey. And I can't find a source for the "average adult has read only six books from this list" thing at all, possibly just because searching for it just gets me the meme all over the place....

ANYWAY. Wherever it comes from, here is the meme.

Bolded if I've read it
Italicised if I've started it/ read some of it
Struck out if I hated it
Asterisked if I own it but haven't read it

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien

3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte*
4 Harry Potter series - J.K. 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
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier (keep meaning to borrow it off my dad, now I've discovered it's not chick lit, which for some reason I thought it was...)
16 The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulk
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 HitchHiker’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 - C.S. Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - C.S. Lewis

37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
40 Winnie the Pooh - A.A. 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 - L.M. Montgomery (all seven of them)
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’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 - 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...I've read 45, which is good, but my English degree accounts for quite a lot of those. And I own at least another 20 - I might have forgotten some - although I think a lot of those are the £1 Penguin Classics you could get for a while. I should probably read them, but anyway, I've read lost more than this mythical average adult. Ha!

A-ha! And I've just found a blog entry where The Book Geek looks into the origins of the meme, with similar results. Right down to the "..but I don't care, I'll do the meme anyway". Hee.



( 8 comments — Comment )
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:09 pm (UTC)
Ah! Not sure if I missed that completely, or if it's what subconsciously motivated me to go looking for info...cheers!
Feb. 20th, 2009 04:33 pm (UTC)
I've read 49, but I don't think The Lion, The Witch And The Wardrobe should count as being separate from the Chronicles of Narnia!
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:10 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I had the same thought about Hamlet and the Complete Works of Shakespeare!
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:06 pm (UTC)
It's a weird list- a mix of boring (in the sense of overly familar) classics and recent best sellers. There doesn't seem to have been any attempt of quality control.
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:11 pm (UTC)
Yeah, I think it was just a weekend magazine filler article, probably. It's weirdly inconsistent in whether it names individual books or series of books, too, and in how many of a given author you can have.
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:11 pm (UTC)
Still have 26 of them, can't understand why Quo Vadis is not included!
Feb. 20th, 2009 05:16 pm (UTC)
I've read 26 of them. :S
( 8 comments — Comment )


bad wolf
Notes from extinction

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