The Big Read (http://www.neabigread.org/) said that, on average, adults have only read six books on this list. So … copy this list, remove my yeses and nos, and add your comments (favourable or otherwise) about the ones you have read. Don’t forget to include a total.

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen – Yes
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien – No. But I bought it a bit ago and it is next on my list.
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte – Yes.
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling – Yes.
5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee – Yes.
6 The Bible – Good chunks of it but not the whole thing, so I’ll say no.
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte –  Yes.
8 1984 – George Orwell – No.
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman – No.
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens –  Yes.
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott – Yes. Loved it! I can’t believe that I don’t own it. Got to put this on my next “to buy” list from the used book store.
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy – No.
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller – No.
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare – No. I’ve read some Shakespeare but not his complete works.
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier – No.
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien – No. Another that I’ve recently bought to read though.
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks – No.
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger – No.
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger – No.
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot- No.
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell – Yes.
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald – No.
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens- No.
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy – No.
25 The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams – No.
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh – No.
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky – No.
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll – Yes.
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame – No.
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy – No.
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens – No.
33 The Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis – Some of the books, but not all so I’ll give this another no.
34 Emma – Jane Austen – No.
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen – No.
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – Yes.
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini – No.
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres- No.
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden – No.
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne – Yes.
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell – Yes.
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown – No. And I’m not interested in it either so I doubt I ever will.
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez – No.
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving – No.
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins – No.
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery – No.
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy – No.
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood – No.
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding – Yes.
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan – No.
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel – No.
52 Dune – Frank Herbert- No.
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons – No.
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen – Yes.
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth – No.
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon – No.
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens – No. Um… What’s with the Dickens love? There are so many other wonderful authors.
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley – No.
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon – No.
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez – No.
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck – No.
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov – No.
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt – No.
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold – Yes.
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas – No.
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac – No.
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy – No.
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding – Yes.
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie – No.
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville – No.
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens – No.
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker – Yes.
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett – Yes.
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson – No.
75 Ulysses – James Joyce – No.
76 The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath – No.
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome – No.
78 Germinal – Emile Zola – No.
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray – No.
80 Possession – AS Byatt- No.
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens – Yes.
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell – No.
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker -Yes.
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro – No.
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert – No.
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry – No.
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White – Yes.
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom – No.
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – No.
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton – No.
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad – No.
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupe – No.
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks – No.
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams – No.
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole – No.
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute – No.
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas – No.

98 Hamlet – Shakespeare – Yes.

99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl – Yes.
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo -No.

So I’ve read 23 books on the list. That isn’t great but I guess it is passable if the average adult has only read 6 of the books on the list. However, I don’t know how true those numbers are. Plus, I’ve recently found out that the average adult doesn’t read much at all and that isn’t the aim I have for myself or my children. I’d like to hold my own in any book discussion which means I need to read MUCH more than I do now. I think I’ll pick twenty books from that list to read this year.

  1. The Lord of the Rings
  2. The Bible (I’ve always wanted to read it  all the way through. Why not make this the year?)
  3. 1984
  4. Shakespeare
  5. Rebecca
  6. The Hobbit
  7. The Time Traveler’s Wife
  8. War and Peace
  9. Crime and Punishment
  10. The Wind in the Willows
  11. Anna Karenina
  12. The Chronicles of Narnia
  13. Emma
  14. Anne of Green Gables
  15. The Handmaid’s Tale
  16. Madame Bovary
  17. The Five People You Meet in Heaven
  18. The Little Prince
  19. Les Miserables
  20. The Bell Jar

I’m not terribly excited about many of these choices but in order to be a librarian (yes, folks, I have finally decided on my profession!) I know that these are books that I “should” read. So I may as well get it out of the way now.

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