Forgive Me For a Meme

My friend Thalia posted this meme. I normally avoid these, but the list was so bizarre and since she’s one of my favorite bookish friends, I wanted to post about it as conversation.

Bold means I’ve read it. Italics means I started it but didn’t finish. Crossed out means I hated it. TBR means I want to read, or re-read it.

Why I find this list bizarre and stupid: who picked the classics–Austen and Bronte but not Hemingway or Fitzgerald? And why multiples from Neil Gaiman and Neal Stephenson, but only two more recent ones by Atwood? There’s a smattering of “it” books up to a few years ago, but without rhyme or reason. Some I won’t bother reading. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance is supposed to be boring and superficial. I very much enjoyed Zen and the Art of Archery instead.

What I’m proudest of having read: the completed novels of Austen, Don Quixote, Gulliver’s Travels, all just because I wanted to.

The Aeneid
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
American Gods
Anansi Boys-TBR
Angela’s Ashes : A Memoir
Angels & Demons
Anna Karenina-TBR
Atlas Shrugged
The Blind Assassin-TBR
Brave New World
The Brothers Karamazov
The Canterbury Tales
The Catcher in the Rye
A Clockwork Orange
Cloud Atlas
Collapse : How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed
A Confederacy of Dunces
The Confusion-TBR
The Corrections
The Count of Monte Cristo
Crime and Punishment
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
David Copperfield
Don Quixote
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
Foucault’s Pendulum
The Fountainhead
Freakonomics : A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything
The God of Small Things
The Grapes of Wrath
Gravity’s Rainbow
Great Expectations
Gulliver’s Travels
Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
The Historian : A Novel
The Hobbit
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Iliad
In Cold Blood : A True Account of a Multiple Murder and its Consequences
The Inferno
Jane Eyre
Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
The Kite Runner
Les Misérables
Life of Pi : A Novel
Love in the Time of Cholera-TBR
Madame Bovary-TBR
Mansfield Park
Memoirs of a Geisha
The Mists of Avalon
Moby Dick
Mrs. Dalloway
The Name of the Rose
Northanger Abbey
The Odyssey
Oliver Twist
On the Road
The Once and Future King
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Oryx and Crake : A Novel
A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present
The Picture of Dorian Gray
The Poisonwood Bible : A Novel
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Pride and Prejudice
The Prince
Reading Lolita in Tehran : A Memoir in Books
The Satanic Verses
The Scarlet Letter
Sense and Sensibility
A Short History of Nearly Everything
The Silmarillion
The Sound and the Fury
The Tale of Two Cities
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
The Three Musketeers
The Time Traveler’s Wife
To the Lighthouse
Treasure Island
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Vanity Fair
War and Peace-TBR
Watership Down
White Teeth

Wicked : The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
Wuthering Heights
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : An Inquiry Into Values

3 Responses to “Forgive Me For a Meme”

  1. thalia Says:

    I’ve just updated the post on my site. Turns out this is the ‘106 top unread books’ at Library thing, hence the odd mix of books. Why didn’t you finish vanity fair?

  2. MsPrufrock Says:

    Thank god, finally someone who didn’t like Reading Lolita in Tehran. I was really excited about reading it, but once I started I was severely disappointed. I stuck with it for awhile, but reached a point at which I could stomach no more and gave up. It’s a shame it was written by Nafisi, as it could have been a far better book without all of the smug pretension.

    Ok, I’m done now.

  3. Kate Says:

    As you write you’re overwhelmed, I drop a big, old comment. As always, please ignore till the time is right:

    I’ve read 31 of the books, but geez, that is a random list. I think I understand where it’s from now, but having the Mists of Avalon on the same list at Foucault’s Pendulum cracks me up.

    I have a very good friend who loved Reading Lolita in Tehran, but I, too, was underwhelmed by it. I did, however, read it at the same time as Persepolis, which gave me an interesting perspective.

    Leo at Mommy Tracks just finished The Blind Assassin–I loved that book, and think it’s great it’s back on a lot of TBR lists.

    Always by Nicola Griffin is waiting for me right now. I just finished The Nine, which, contrary to its subtitle, is not actually about the secret lives of Supreme Court justices. It’s mostly about what’s already out there, though well written.