Thursday, March 01, 2007


Jodi posted this and said she thought I would laugh at her for it. I didn’t laugh and I don’t know why I would but here. I’ve done it now too.

In the list of books below, bold the ones you’ve read, italicize the ones you want to read, cross out the ones you won’t touch with a ten-foot pole, put a cross (+) in front of the ones on your book shelf, and asterisk (*) the ones you’ve never heard of:

  1. The Da Vinci Code (Dan Brown)
  2. +Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
  3. +To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
  4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)-never seen all of the movie though.
  5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)-Read it, didn’t like it.
  6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)- Read it, didn’t like it.
  7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien) Read it, didn’t like it.
  8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)-I honestly can’t remember if I have read this or not. I remember owning it and I remember parts of the story, so I am guessing I at least read part of it.
  9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
  10. *A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)- I was wondering about this book because I didn’t remember ever hearing the title, so I looked it up. It is, apparently, an Oprah’s book club pick, which explains why I don’t know about it. I tend to like stories set in India but I also tend to dislike the books Oprah picks…so it is indeed a Fine Balance.
  11. +Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
  12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
  13. +Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
  14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)-I heard this was good but I kind of got over Irving a while ago. I am not OPPOSED to him, just kind of tired of him.
  15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
  16. +Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Rowling)
  17. *Fall On Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)-Intersting. Another book I wasn’t familiar with and another Oprah pick. I guess I really do ignore what she picks.
  18. The Stand (Stephen King)- I am not a huge fan of King but for some reason I really love the epic-ness of this one. I like The Shining too, the end of that book is just creeeeepy.
  19. +Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
  20. +Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)-I think this is one of those books that I have read about half of and never finished. I am not really big on gothics but I WANT to like this one. I did just watch it on Masterpiece Theatre though, does that count?
  21. +The Hobbit (Tolkien)-This is really the only one of the series that I like.
  22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)-I should really read this. Everyone has read this except me. Eh, I’ll get around to it.
  23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)-Um…Another one that I can’t remember if I finished or not. I did read a bunch of her other books when I was a kid. I was terribly fond of “A Rose in Bloom” and “Jo’s Boys.”
  24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)-My mom said I should read this. But I haven’t.
  25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
  26. +The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)-One of my all time favorites. )
  27. +Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)-Damn, I should really finish all those books I started and never completed. I like the movie of this one but found the book a little tedious. But still… I should finish it.
  28. +The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe (C.S. Lewis)-Read this whole series when I was a kid.
  29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
  30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
  31. Dune (Frank Herbert) Oh, I tried. I did. But…yeah.
  32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
  33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)-I read “Anthem.” Does that count?
  34. 1984 (Orwell)
  35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
  36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
  37. *The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
  38. I Know This Much Is True (Wally Lamb)
  39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)-My mom says I should read this one too.
  40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)- Had to look this one up…not really to my taste.
  41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)-Gee, I THINK I read this. I remember seeing the movie and knowing what it was about…so…I THINK I read it.
  42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
  43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
  44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
  45. +Bible-OOOH! Can I count this twice?
  46. +Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)-Ah, next on my list of things to read. Looking forward to it.
  47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
  48. Angela's Ashes (Frank McCourt)
  49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)-I can’t remember if I have read any Steinbeck or not. I am sure I must have but I swear I can’t remember what.
  50. She's Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
  51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)-My mom says I should read this.
  52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)_OK, full disclosure, I have never finished this book but I love, love, love the movie with Ronald Coleman.
  53. Ender's Game (Orson Scott Card)
  54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
  55. +The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)-One of my favorite books.
  56. *The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
  57. +Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
  58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)-Read it as a kid for the dirty parts.
  59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
  60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
  61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
  62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
  63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
  64. Interview with the Vampire (Anne Rice)
  65. *Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)- Had to look this one up and I am intrigued.
  66. +One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
  67. The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants (Ann Brashares)
  68. +Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
  69. +Les Miserables (Hugo)-Read Half. Will finish someday.
  70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
  71. +Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
  72. +Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
  73. Shogun (James Clavell)
  74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
  75. +The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)-Love this one.
  76. *The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)-OK, now I want to know where this list came from. I looked this one up and although it looks interesting, there are too many fantasy novels juxtaposed with Oprah picks. I don’t get this list at all.
  77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)_ Read the Readers Digest condensed version one summer at the bay. Never wanted to read the whole book after that.
  78. The World According To Garp (John Irving)
  79. *The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
  80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
  81. *Not Wanted On the Voyage (Timothy Findley)_ok. Lots of Canadian authors too. Where is this list from???
  82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck) )
  83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
  84. *Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)_I know the author but not the title…
  85. +Emma (Jane Austen)
  86. Watership Down (Richard Adams)
  87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)

  88. *The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)-hmmm…another Canadian, not that there is anything wrong with that…but I see a trend.
  89. *Blindness (Jose Saramago)-Oh wow. Look this one up. This sounds fascinating.
  90. *Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)- I looked this up to see why the authors name was familiar and I still don’t know why. What did he write that I would have seen?
  91. *In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
  92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
  93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
  94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)-My mom says I should read this.
  95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
  96. The Outsiders (S. E. Hinton) )
  97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
  98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
  99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
  100. +Ulysses (James Joyce)

OK, so:
Number read: 34
Number half read: about 7
Number my mom said I should read: 4
Number I have read more than once: 8

Some people think I have “snobbish” taste in books (their word, not mine). I don’t think this is true. I will attempt to read anything. And I will dissect it according to my training in literary criticism. I know that just because I don’t like a book, doesn’t mean that it is not significant, well-written or entertaining to others. I think that all books have merit if someone can read and enjoy them and that enlightenment can be found in the most unusual places. I don’t dismiss romance novels or mystery novels or any books that I haven’t read, but I do have an informed opinion on what I might not like. I think I have read an average sampling of different types of books and know where the type I will most appreciate. Do I have any great interest in, say…Dan Brown’s books? No. But if I had nothing else to read, I would read it.

I pick books by recommendation, by cover, by author and by having them fall in my lap. I make an effort to read outside of my literary comfort zone and I often find the best books by taking a chance. I do think it benefits almost anyone to read the Bible. Not for religious reasons but because so much other literature refers to the Bible and I think it helps one to understand the references.

I will never laugh at you for the number of books you have or have not read, the type of books you read, or the length of time it takes you to read them. I promise.


Jodi said...

I don't think I sincerely thought you'd laugh at me. And yeah, I don't know where in the hell this list came's kind of a mish-mosh. I don't think/I hope I didn't ever call your reading tastes "snobbish," but I definitely feel kind of dumb when reading about what you are reading as I haven't heard of.

I do feel I should go back and make more comments now. I really admire you bloggers that have something to say vs. throwing up a meme, photo, or haiku and running off.

acmcclendon said...

hmmm. you have training in literary criticism, hence your open-mindedness to reading and ability to "dissect" books. i had my training in "media analysis" so i can tell you when i see a good commercial. well, to each his own (i guess i really should read more)...

Chris said...

I wanted to put this list on my blog when I saw it on Jodi's. Weirdly enough, when I logged in to Blogger, it told me that the Google bots had decided that my blog was a spam blog (?!) and they had locked my access to it. I had to type in a captcha to prove that I was human and that put my blog on a queue for a person to read it at Google to decide if it was written by a real person. Ugh.

I like your comments. I was doing the same thing, but I can't post it for a while...