The Book Challenge

Because I’m a big fan of biting off more than I can chew, in addition to the challenges associated with, y’know, trying to become one of those contributing member of society grown-up things, I set myself one completely arbitrary challenge to be accomplished by December 22, 2012, which in addition to supposedly being the date of the next projected apocalypse, is my birthday.

I’m going to read 100 of the “Best Books of All Time”

Now, I’ve since had to abandon the original deadline, considering that I’ve read less than a book a month off this list since I started, and realizing that I’d have to read almost two per week in order to meet the original deadline. I decided that in the event that the world does end the night before my next birthday, I would be well and truly ticked off if I’d spent every spare second of free time undertaking a basically arbitrary task, when I have such a huge variety of (possibly also arbitrary) activities I could be doing in addition if I only spent a bit less time reading.

The rationale behind this is basically that I all but stopped reading in University. At least in terms of things I actually wanted to read. Because I’ve been slower with posting this list than I have been reading the books, there are a few on here I’ve already finished. Go me! I promise I’m not cheating. I’ve discovered that based on the contents of many Top 100 Books of All Time lists, I’ve already read close to, if not over 100 books. This is pretty awesome, but completely unrelated to this challenge. I compiled this list entirely of books I had not yet read. But I’m a much more prolific reader than writer, when I have my druthers, also when I have very little down time, and less when I’m close to my computer.

So without further ado, here’s my list. Bold is complete, underline is in progress.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
The Inferno, Dante
Shogun, James Clavell
Cat’s Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
The Notebook, Nicholas Sparks
The Bible
The Koran
Midnight’s Children, Salman Rushdie
The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
The Remains of the Day, Kazuo Ishiguro
The Wasp Factory, Iain Banks
The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
The Stone Angel, Margaret Laurence
Moby Dick by Herman Melville
The Pillars of the Earth, Ken Follett
On the Road by Jack Kerouac
Cloud Atlas, David Mitchell
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Dune by Frank Herbert
Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
The Five People You Meet in Heaven, Mitch Albom
Dracula by Bram Stoker
The Stranger by Albert Camus
Blindness, Jose Saramago
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, Betty Smith
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
Fifth Business, Robertson Davies
The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
The Stand by Stephen King
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
The Idiot by Fyodor Dostoevsky
Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk
The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
The Stone Diaries, Carol Shields
To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
The Mists of Avalon, Marion Zimmer Bradley
Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
Not Wanted on the Voyage, Timothy Findley
The Road by Cormac McCarthy
The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
The Lovely Bones, Alice Sebold
A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
The Secret History, Donna Tartt
A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kesey
Siddharta by Hermann Hesse
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
The Power of One, Bryce Courtenay
The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCullough
Atonement by Ian McEwan
The Celestine Prophecy, James Redfield
Interview with the Vampire, Anne Rice
The Shadow of the Wind, Carlos Ruiz Zafon
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera
Kane and Abel, Jeffrey Archer
The Clan of the Cave Bear, Jean M. Auel
The Faraway Tree Collection, Enid Blyton
A Woman of Substance, Barbara Taylor Bradford
The Good Earth, Pearl S. Buck
The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
Germinal, Emile Zola
Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
Remembrance of Things Past by Marcel Proust
Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
Angela’s Ashes, Frank McCourt
Of Human Bondage by W. Somerset Maugham
The Bourne Identity, Robert Ludlum
Life of Pi by Yann Martel
Winnie The Pooh, A. A. Milne
A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Mark Haddon
Tess of the D’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
White Oleander, Janet Fitch
Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
The Trial by Franz Kafka
Summer Tree, Guy Gavriel Kay
Possession, AS Byatt
Swallows and Amazons, Arthur Ransome
Beloved by Toni Morrison
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The Woman in White, Wilkie Collins
Outlander, Diana Gabaldon
Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
Wizard’s First Rule, Terry Goodkind
Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
The Red Tent, Anita Diamant
Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
Birdsong by Sebastian Faulk
The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Current Completion: 12/100


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