106 books of pretension meme

October 3, 2007

A list of books read entirely or in part by me (hattip: the silverback). A comment to his post puts us on the track of Live Granades on 106 books and gives the source motivation for the list:

These are the top 106 books most often marked as “unread” by LibraryThing’s users.

On to my version of the list…

  1. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell [hmm, never heard of this one. bad on me]
  2. Anna Karenina [Definitely started this one but suspect I never finished it]
  3. Crime and Punishment
  4. Catch-22 [First big surprise for me, who in the heck is even a casual reader and hasn’t read this?]
  5. One Hundred Years of Solitude [in the translation naturally. similar can be assumed for most of the rest nonEnglish ones]
  6. Wuthering Heights [or “Quivering Thighs” in high school English class parlance. I somehow missed ever being assigned this one, good on me]
  7. The Silmarillion [a huge clue to the list. the “other” works of an author of a really GoodBook. this reminds me, I have the newest resurrected Tolkien buried on the bookpile at the moment!]
  8. Life of Pi : a novel [too much hype, then there was the plagiarism thing. just never got interested]
  9. The Name of the Rose
  10. Don Quixote [the only one i have read in the original language, not well mind you. went through the original after reading it in English so that helped]
  11. Moby Dick [I’m thinking the only possible way US schooled people haven’t read this is because they skipped the assignment.]
  12. Ulysses
  13. Madame Bovary
  14. The Odyssey [i think i free e-booked this once when trying to decide if that tech was going to work for me on the PDA. it didn’t]
  15. Pride and Prejudice [had to have been an assignment. 10th grade?]
  16. Jane Eyre
  17. The Tale of Two Cities [definitely opened it but just don’t remember getting really ‘started’]
  18. The Brothers Karamazov
  19. Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
  20. War and Peace [oh, big shocker there.]
  21. Vanity Fair
  22. The Time Traveler’s Wife [ok, #2 that I don’t recognize]
  23. The Iliad
  24. Emma
  25. The Blind Assassin
  26. The Kite Runner [according to the spouse though the followup is beyond ‘angela’s ashes’ depressing so i’m holding off]
  27. Mrs. Dalloway
  28. Great Expectations
  29. American Gods [#3 I’m not recalling ever coming across.]
  30. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
  31. Atlas Shrugged [dang. which Rand was it that focused on architecture?]
  32. Reading Lolita in Tehran : a memoir in books [#4]
  33. Memoirs of a Geisha
  34. Middlesex
  35. Quicksilver
  36. Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West [really thought I was going to hate it, picked it up on remote vacation and it turned out to be great. I didn’t learn my lesson though because I pick up his other ones in the bookstore and just put them down again because I figure I’ll hate ’em.]
  37. The Canterbury tales [This is the one I am most likely to have actually completed but I don’t remember doing so]
  38. The Historian : a novel
  39. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
  40. Love in the Time of Cholera [the magical realism thing was way too overdone and way too hyped but you might as well get through this and One hundred years…]
  41. Brave New world
  42. The Fountainhead [UPDATE: thanks to reader comment, figured out which Rand I’ve actually read]
  43. Foucault’s Pendulum
  44. Middlemarch
  45. Frankenstein [ha, no coincidence these next three come together, that’s the way I read them too]
  46. The Count of Monte Cristo
  47. Dracula
  48. A Clockwork Orange [movie first for me. as with most, I’d think]
  49. Anansi Boys
  50. The Once and Future King [No Arthurian period in your reading history is complete without this, Mists of Avalon (below) and the Mary Stewart ones]
  51. The Grapes of Wrath
  52. The Poisonwood Bible : a novel
  53. 1984
  54. Angels & Demons
  55. The Inferno
  56. The Satanic Verses
  57. Sense and Sensibility
  58. The Picture of Dorian Gray
  59. Mansfield Park
  60. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
  61. To the Lighthouse
  62. Tess of the D’Urbervilles
  63. Oliver Twist
  64. Gulliver’s Travels
  65. Les Misérables
  66. The Corrections [#5 I think we’re up to]
  67. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay [uh-oh, #6 I’ve never heard of]
  68. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
  69. Dune
  70. The Prince
  71. The Sound and the Fury
  72. Angela’s Ashes : a memoir
  73. The God of Small Things
  74. A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present
  75. Cryptonomicon [#7]
  76. Neverwhere [#8]
  77. A Confederacy of Dunces
  78. A Short History of Nearly Everything
  79. Dubliners
  80. The Unbearable Lightness of Being [the unbelievable overhyping…]
  81. Beloved [grim]
  82. Slaughterhouse-five [c’mon but Cat’s Cradle has way more memorable stuff in it!]
  83. The Scarlet Letter
  84. Eats, Shoots & Leaves
  85. The Mists of Avalon
  86. Oryx and Crake : a novel [her best one despite the alex-the-wonder-bird woo]
  87. Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed [#9]
  88. Cloud Atlas [#10]
  89. The Confusion [#11, dang, I have to get Googling on these]
  90. Lolita
  91. Persuasion
  92. Northanger Abbey
  93. The Catcher in the Rye
  94. On the Road
  95. The Hunchback of Notre Dame
  96. Freakonomics : a rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything
  97. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an inquiry into values
  98. The Aeneid
  99. Watership Down
  100. Gravity’s Rainbow [#12]
  101. The Hobbit
  102. In Cold Blood : a true account of a multiple murder and its consequences
  103. White Teeth [#13]
  104. Treasure Island [what? who hasn’t read treasure island for chrissakes?]
  105. David Copperfield
  106. The Three Musketeers [i think this must be my most-attempted never completed read]

well, that was fun for me anyway. probably you’ll have more fun doing your own list than reading mine…

Oh, and don’t worry. Apparently this is a meme without the chain-letter thing. I like this way better.

6 Responses to “106 books of pretension meme”

  1. drugmonkey Says:

    Good find. I googled the meme a little bit, seems to be populated with book readin’ types. What’s weird is how poorly read these people are! I mean a lot of this list is pure high school and college English class canon (in the US anyway). How did they escape it?


  2. JSinger Says:

    Frankenstein is one I’d have put in the category of “unreadable”, as short as it is. I’m amazed anyone has finished it. I’d put Quicksilver, Aeneid and Gravity’s Rainbow in the same category, as well as Ulysses if you read it outside of a class and without Cliff Notes.


  3. Bill Snedden Says:

    In re: #31. Rand’s “architecture” book was The Fountainhead, which is #42 on your list, so if you’ve read that one you’ll want to amend…


  4. […] enjoyed the 101 Books of Pretension Meme before so let’s take a run at this […]


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