lit meme

In 2005, Time magazine picked the 100 best English-language novels (1923-present). Mark the selections you have read in bold. If you liked it, add a star (*) in front of the title, if you didn't, give it a minus (-). Then, put the total number of books you've read.

The Adventures of Augie March - Saul Bellow
All the King's Men - Robert Penn Warren
American Pastoral - Philip Roth
An American Tragedy - Theodore Dreiser
*Animal Farm - George Orwell poor Snowball!
Appointment in Samarra - John O'Hara
*Are You There God? It's Me, Margaret - Judy Blume God bless Judy Blume - so many of us wouldn't have survived puberty without her.
The Assistant - Bernard Malamud
At Swim-Two-Birds - Flann O'Brien
Atonement - Ian McEwan
Beloved - Toni Morrison
The Berlin Stories - Christopher Isherwood
*The Big Sleep - Raymond Chandler
The Blind Assassin - Margaret Atwood
*Blood Meridian - Cormac McCarthy an amazing, brutal read - highly recommended!
Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
The Bridge of San Luis Rey - Thornton Wilder
Call It Sleep - Henry Roth
Catch-22 - Joseph Heller
The Catcher in the Rye - J.D. Salinger Franny and Zooey was better.
*A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess Care for a little of the old in and out?
The Confessions of Nat Turner - William Styron
The Corrections - Jonathan Franzen
The Crying of Lot 49 - Thomas Pynchon I read 'V', which was really long and complex and not that enjoyable...sorry, Thomas Pynchon.
A Dance to the Music of Time - Anthony Powell
The Day of the Locust - Nathanael West
Death Comes for the Archbishop - Willa Cather Why haven't I read this?
A Death in the Family - James Agee
The Death of the Heart - Elizabeth Bowen
Deliverance - James Dickey
Dog Soldiers - Robert Stone
Falconer - John Cheever
The French Lieutenant's Woman - John Fowles Saw the movie...it was pretty good.
The Golden Notebook - Doris Lessing
Go Tell it on the Mountain - James Baldwin
*Gone With the Wind - Margaret Mitchell
*The Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck Brilliant.
Gravity's Rainbow - Thomas Pynchon See The Crying of Lot 49, above.
*The Great Gatsby - F. Scott Fitzgerald
A Handful of Dust - Evelyn Waugh
The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter - Carson McCullers
The Heart of the Matter - Graham Greene
Herzog - Saul Bellow
Housekeeping - Marilynne Robinson
A House for Mr. Biswas - V.S. Naipaul
I, Claudius - Robert Graves
Infinite Jest - David Foster Wallace I tried, I really did.
Invisible Man - Ralph Ellison
Light in August - William Faulkner
*The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe - C.S. Lewis
*Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov Might be the most beautifully constructed novel of all time. Love it! Read it!
*Lord of the Flies - William Golding Those pesky kids...
*The Lord of the Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien
Loving - Henry Green
Lucky Jim - Kingsley Amis
The Man Who Loved Children - Christina Stead
Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
Money - Martin Amis
The Moviegoer - Walker Percy
*Mrs. Dalloway - Virginia Woolf A beautifully written novel. I can never decide which one to recommend to new V. Woolf readers - this or the equally sublime To the Lighthouse.
Naked Lunch - William Burroughs Two words: giant cockroaches. Gross.
Native Son - Richard Wright
*Neuromancer - William Gibson
Never Let Me Go - Kazuo Ishiguro
*1984 - George Orwell
On the Road - Jack Kerouac Not as good as 'Visions of Cody'.
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest - Ken Kesey
-The Painted Bird - Jerzy Kosinski I liked this book okay until I found out that he made it all up.
Pale Fire - Vladimir Nabokov
A Passage to India - E.M. Forster
Play It As It Lays - Joan Didion
Portnoy's Complaint - Philip Roth
Possession - A.S. Byatt
The Power and the Glory - Graham Greene
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie - Muriel Spark
Rabbit, Run - John Updike
Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow enh.
The Recognitions - William Gaddis
Red Harvest - Dashiell Hammett
Revolutionary Road - Richard Yates
The Sheltering Sky - Paul Bowles
*Slaughterhouse-Five - Kurt Vonnegut BRILLIANT. I like 'Welcome to the Monkey House the best, though.
Snow Crash - Neal Stephenson I am the only sci-fi reader in the universe who didn't like this book. I loved 'The Diamond Age' and 'Zodiac'...
The Sot-Weed Factor - John Barth
*The Sound and the Fury – William Faulkner Profoundly beautiful. I just love Faulker. But I wish 'As I Lay Dying' was on this list as well. What a heartbreaking, amazing book.
The Sportswriter – Richard Ford
The Spy Who Came in From the Cold – John le Carre
*The Sun Also Rises – Ernest Hemingway
Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
Things Fall Apart – Chinua Achebe
*To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee Scout, Atticus Finch, and Boo Radley...
*To the Lighthouse - Virginia Woolf I love this book.
Tropic of Cancer - Henry Miller
Ubik - Philip K. Dick
Under the Net - Iris Murdoch
Under the Volcano - Malcolm Lowry
Watchmen - Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons Why isn't Maus on this list? It's much better that the Watchmen. Or even V for Vendetta...
White Noise - Don DeLillo A wonderful, wonderful book.
White Teeth - Zadie Smith
Wide Sargasso Sea - Jean Rhys

I read 36 of these bad boys...not too bad...


ktbuffy said...

Wow! Really impressive. I think you've posted the highest score I've seen yet on this meme!

Riain Grey said...

hee! if only the list had been best sci-fi/fantasy, i would have scored a bundle more...

that would be a fun list to create.

ix said...

You've seen the Guardian's top 20 geek novels, right?

1. The HitchHiker's Guide to the Galaxy -- Douglas Adams
2. 1984 -- George Orwell
3. Brave New World -- Aldous Huxley
4. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? -- Philip K Dick
5. Neuromancer -- William Gibson
6. Dune -- Frank Herbert
7. I, Robot -- Isaac Asimov
8. Foundation -- Isaac Asimov
9. The Colour of Magic -- Terry Pratchett
10. Microserfs -- Douglas Coupland
11. Snow Crash -- Neal Stephenson
12. Watchmen -- Alan Moore & Dave Gibbons
13. Cryptonomicon -- Neal Stephenson
14. Consider Phlebas -- Iain M Banks
15. Stranger in a Strange Land -- Robert Heinlein
16. The Man in the High Castle -- Philip K Dick
17. American Gods -- Neil Gaiman
18. The Diamond Age -- Neal Stephenson
19. The Illuminatus! Trilogy -- Robert Shea & Robert Anton Wilson
20. Trouble with Lichen - John Wyndham

Riain Grey said...

ix! nice to see you. i hadn't heard of this list, thanks for sending! i have read slightly more of these...