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Irresistible "Important Book" Meme

May 6th, 2008

Arg arg. I am sucked in again. Via Kate, may the patron imps of intelligent time usage curse her name.

These are the top 106 books most often marked as “unread” by some group’s users. As in, they sit on the shelf to make you look smart or well-rounded. Bold the ones you’ve read, and italicize the ones you own but have not read.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
Catch-22
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion
Life of Pi : a novel
The Name of the Rose
Don Quixote
Moby Dick
Ulysses
Madame Bovary
Pride and Prejudice
Jane Eyre
A Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveler’s Wife
Emma
The Iliad
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
American Gods
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Atlas Shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran
Memoirs of a Geisha
Middlesex
Quicksilver
Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canterbury Tales
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
Middlemarch
Frankenstein
The Count of Monte Cristo
Dracula
A Clockwork Orange
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King
The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible : a novel
1984
Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
Sense and Sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
Gulliver’s Travels
Les Miserables
The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Dune
The Prince
The Sound and the Fury
Angela’s Ashes : a memoir
The God of Small Things
A People’s History of the United States
Cryptonomicon
Neverwhere
A Confederacy of Dunces – Started it, read 30 pages, put it down. Sucked. No offense to that guy who died to get it published.
A Short History of Nearly Everything
Dubliners
The Unbearable Lightness of Being
Beloved
The Scarlet Letter
Slaughterhouse-five
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake : a novel
Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
Lolita
Persuasion
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame – Started it, read 20 pages, put it down. Just wasn’t in the mood for baroque word density that day. I think I was on vacation at the time.
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
Gravity’s Rainbow – Read nearly half of this one, kept waiting for it to get back to the interesting part and make sense. Finally decided it wasn’t going to.
The Hobbit
In Cold Blood : a true account of a multiple murder and its consequences
White Teeth
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

Well, that wasn’t so bad. 50 out of 106. And the only ones I’m keeping in a prominent place on my bookshelf pretending like I’ve read are Foucault’s Pendulum, which I do actually plan to read, and Cryptonomicon, which maybe.

Funny how every single Jane Austen novel is on this list. Though I guess that’s just cause it’s skewed to the Oprah.

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