Books, books, and more books

I got this meme from the Philosophy Blog.

1. Bold what you have read.
2. Italicize what you started but couldn’t finish.
3. Add the books that should be on the list, but aren’t.
4. Add lots of comments.

OK, so I added those last two rules. How can you have The Silmarillion and The Hobbit on the list but not include The Lord of the Rings? It’s absurd. I added a bunch. A short line of asterisks follows my additions.

Possession (Beautiful, gorgeous, moving, lyrical… I love it)

The Lord of the Rings (Tolkein created a genre. Aside from Homer, how many authors can claim that?)

Harry Potter (1-7) (I’m still sad it’s over.)

The Wheel of Time (The author died last month, so the end of the series is in some doubt.)

To Kill a Mockingbird (The greatest American novel ever written.)

The Great Gatsby (I read it in school with predictable results; I hated it.)

A Room with a View (One of my all-time favorites. Truth! Beauty! Love!)

The Princess Bride (Wonderful. Funny and heart warming and intelligent.)

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress (It’s the standard bearer for libertarian fiction. I think that says it all — both the good and the bad.)

Smilla’s Sense of Snow (I really like this, despite it’s rather weird ending.)

Animal Farm

Gone With the Wind (I’ve never seen the movie either.)

Lord of the Flies (This is one of those books that I’m sure I’ve read, but I can’t remember actually reading it…)

A Passage to India

Heart of Darkness (watching Apocalypse Now doesn’t count)

The World According to Garp

The Cider House Rules

A Prayer for Owen Meany (I loved Garp, and I finished The Cider House Rules, but Owen left me cold.)

Stranger in a Strange Land

The Stand (The ending sucks, but the journey is amazing.)

It (Freaky clowns scare the beejepus out of me.)


The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Monty Python in book form.)

On the Beach

The Sun Also Rises

Women in Love (For a long time I really wanted to like D. H. Lawrence; I don’t.)

The Trial (Another school assignment. I rarely finished those… even when I liked the book)

As I Lay Dying (School strikes again)

The Tin Drum (School strikes again)

The Tropic of Cancer (as with Lawrence, I really wanted to like Miller.)

Fahrenheit 451

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret (Judy Bloom rocks)

Naked Lunch (“I can think of at least two things wrong with that title.”)

The Big Sleep (Another author that created a genre.)

The Maltese Falcon

Never Let Me Go (I liked it… very soft and VERY creepy, but moving.)

Remains of the Day

The Red Badge of Courage (I know I read it, but it was so long ago…)

The Spy Who Came in From the Cold

The Hunt for Red October (It’s better than the movie, and the movie is great.)

The Dark Knight (Batman like he’s meant to be.)

Watchmen (Gotta love Rorschach)

Invisible Man (I was 14. I thought it was science fiction. I should pick it up again.)

Uncle Tom’s Cabin (I know, I know…)

The Stranger (Existentialists don’t make for easy reading.)

Bonfire of the Vanities (Ugh… I thought it was irritating)

The Right Stuff (I love it.)

Things Fall Apart

The Way of All Flesh (I bet it’s not as sexy as I hope…)

The Wizard of Oz (Saw the movie)

Little Women (I’m a guy.)

Tom Sawyer (I read it when I was eight or nine… something about Becky and Tom in that cave excited me.)

Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (Wow. Maybe it’s tie with To Kill a Mockingbird.)

Charlotte’s Web (I read it maybe 12 times. Cried every time.)

The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe (I HATED this book. I’m using the word “hate” here.)

James and the Giant Peach (the bugs creeped me out)

Mrs. Frisby and The Rats of Nimh

The Little House Books (I’m a guy.)

Remembrance of Things Past (I’ve never tacked Proust, should I?)

Tom Jones (It’s not unusual…)

The Wings of the Dove

Brideshead Revisited


The Hound of the Baskervilles


Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell (What? Who?)

Anna Karenina (Ugh.)

Crime and Punishment (I hated it. I’ve never liked Tolstoy or Dostoevsky even a little bit. Chekov, I liked. He was funny.)

Catch-22 (One of my all-time favorite, laugh-out loud funny books.)

One Hundred Years of Solitude

Wuthering Heights

The Silmarillion (It’s like a SNL skit that goes on WAY too long.)

Life of Pi: a novel

The Name of the Rose (It’s a hard slog, but it’s very good.)

Don Quixote

Moby Dick (Sad, I know. Call me uncouth.)

Ulysses (I didn’t understand it, but I read it!)

Madame Bovary

The Odyssey

Pride and Prejudice (I always get this, Emma, and Sense and Sensibility confused)

Jane Eyre

A Tale of Two Cities

The Brothers Karamazov

Guns, Germs, and Steel: the Fates of Human Societies

War and Peace (Nobody’s actually finished it. Nope. You’re lying.)

Vanity Fair (no, not the magazine)

The Time Traveler’s Wife (A beautiful, moving, tender book.)

The Iliad

Emma (See Pride and Prejudice, above)

The Blind Assassin

The Kite Runner (Wrenching)

Mrs. Dalloway (Who?)

Great Expectations (Nobody should ever read this. Even for school.)

American Gods (Overrated)

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (How can it not be overrated?)

Atlas Shrugged (What can I say?)

Reading Lolita in Tehran: a memoir in books

Memoirs of a Geisha



Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West (It got tiring, and let’s face it. We all know how it ends.)

The Canterbury Tales (Who’s read ALL of them? What’s the point? My high school English teacher only did the bawdy tales. It led to a classroom discussion on oral sex–at which point the school chaplain walked in. Good times…)

The Historian: a novel

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

Love in the Time of Cholera

Brave New World

The Fountainhead

Foucault’s Pendulum (It’s literally impossible to read all of it.)


Frankenstein (not as good as you hope it is)

The Count of Monte Cristo (What a book!)


A Clockwork Orange (saw the movie though…)

Anansi Boys

The Once and Future King

The Grapes of Wrath (Assigning books like this in school is why people don’t read.)

The Poisonwood Bible: a novel (I’m a guy)

1984 (Orwell was a stud)

Angels & Demons (It’s really not good.)

The Da Vinci Code (This isn’t good either.)

The Inferno

The Satanic Verses

Sense and Sensibility (Which one is this again?)

The Picture of Dorian Gray

Mansfield Park

One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest (I read this when I was 12. Freaked me out.)

To the Lighthouse

Tess of the D’Urbervilles

Oliver Twist

Gulliver’s Travels

Les Misérables (I can’t believe I read the whole thing…)

The Corrections

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay (Not as good as it keeps promising)

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (I’m intrigued)

Dune (The first is great, they get progressively worse very quickly)

The Prince (It’s not as evil as people want you to think)

The Sound and the Fury

Angela’s Ashes: a memoir

The God of Small Things

A People’s History of the United States: 1492-present (Awful, awful book.)

Cryptonomicon (what about the Necronomicon?)


A Confederacy of Dunces

A Short History of Nearly Everything


The Unbearable Lightness of Being

Beloved (Oy. Is there anything more irritating?)


The Scarlet Letter

Eats, Shoots & Leaves (I didnt Finnish because i no possession the book]

The Mists of Avalon

Oryx and Crake : a novel

Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed

Cloud Atlas (I’m reading it right now. Slow going though…)

The Confusion

Lolita (One of my favorites. Creepy, but the language is great.)


Northanger Abbey

The Catcher in the Rye (I hated it.)

On the Road

The Hunchback of Notre Dame

The Man Who Laughs (Still trying to find a translation)

Freakonomics: a Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an Inquiry into Values

The Aeneid

Watership Down (Bunnies!)

Gravity’s Rainbow

The Hobbit

In Cold Blood : A True Account of a Multiple Murder and Its Consequences

White Teeth

Treasure Island

David Copperfield

The Three Musketeers