Saturday, June 27, 2009

Well, read.

I saw this on another blog (oops, forgot to write down which one) and thought I would post it. Several years ago, I was trucking down every "classics" list I could find and crossing them off methodically. (You may have noticed I'm not really doing that anymore.) Apparently, I still have a ways to go though. This is a list of books for the college bound. (Hm...guess it is a little late for me, since I am bounding away from college.)

Key: read, started (or tried), * = on my perpetual TBR list:

Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe
A Death in the Family, by James Agee
Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
Go Tell It on the Mountain, by James Baldwin
Waiting for Godot, by Samuel Beckett
The Adventures of Augie March, by Saul Bellow
Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte

The Stranger, by Albert Camus
Death Comes for the Archbishop, by Willa Cather
Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes
The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer
The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekhov
The Awakening, by Kate Chopin
Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad
The Last of the Mohicans, by James Fenimore Cooper
The Red Badge of Courage, by Stephen Crane
Inferno, by Dante*
Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe*
A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens
Crime and Punishment, by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, by Frederick Douglass
An American Tragedy, by Theodore Dreiser
The Three Musketeers, by Alexandre Dumas
The Mill on the Floss, by George Eliot
Invisible Man, by Ralph Ellison

Selected Essays, by Ralph Waldo Emerson
As I Lay Dying, by William Faulkner
The Sound and the Fury, by William Faulkner

Tom Jones, by Henry Fielding
The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
The Good Soldier, by Ford Madox Ford
Faust, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe*
Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
Tess of the d’Urbervilles, by Thomas Hardy

The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Catch-22, by Joseph Heller
A Farewell to Arms, by Ernest Hemingway
The Iliad, by Homer*
The Odyssey, by Homer*
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, by Victor Hugo
Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston
Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley*
A Doll’s House, by Henrik Ibsen
The Portrait of a Lady, by Henry James
The Turn of the Screw, by Henry James

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, by James Joyce
The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka
The Woman Warrior, by Maxine Hong Kingston
To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
Babbitt, by Sinclair Lewis
The Call of the Wild, by Jack London*
The Magic Mountain, by Thomas Mann
One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Bartleby the Scrivener, by Herman Melville
Moby Dick, by Herman Melville
The Crucible, by Arthur Miller
Beloved, by Toni Morrison
A Good Man is Hard to Find, by Flannery O’Connor
Long Day’s Journey into Night, by Eugene O’Neill
Animal Farm, by George Orwell
Doctor Zhivago, by Boris Pasternak
The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath
Selected Tales, by Edgar Allen Poe
Swann’s Way, by Marcel Proust
The Crying of Lot 49, by Thomas Pynchon
All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque
Cyrano de Bergerac, by Edmond Rostand*
Call it Sleep, by Henry Roth
The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
Hamlet, by William Shakespeare
Macbeth, by William Shakespeare*
A Midsummer Night’s Dream, by William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare
Pygmalion, by George Bernard Shaw
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
Ceremony, by Leslie Marmon Silko

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, by Alexander Solzhenitsyn
Antigone, by Sophocles
Oedipus Rex, by Sophocles*
The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson
Uncle Tom’s Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift*
Vanity Fair, by William Thackeray
Walden, by Henry David Thoreau*
War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy
Fathers and Sons, by Ivan Turgenev
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
Candide, by Voltaire*
Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut*
The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
The House of Mirth, by Edith Wharton
Collected Stories, by Eudora Welty
Leaves of Grass, by Walt Whitman*
The Picture of Dorian Gray, by Oscar Wilde
The Glass Menagerie, by Tennessee Williams
To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf
Native Son, by Richard Wright

Totals: 48 read (just under half - 101 total books), 7 started, 15 *TBR

So, how do you measure up? Or how do you feel about "classics" lists in general (and being required to read from them specifically)?


  1. Hey! I've read 48, too! I think classics lists are good resources, but I'd never try to go through them one by one - there are certain classics, like James Joyce, that I"m not at all interested in reading.

  2. You're absolutely right, Amanda, but there was some weird part of me that just wanted to read them and then say I had read them (probably why I put this list up in the first place, how embarrassing).


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