Thursday, August 19, 2010

50 Must Reads

Here's a list that I'll probably argue with myself on several weeks from today. I won't say that these are the 50 best novels, but they are 50 that you should read. A few are novellas. Many great writers are not on the list. [I prefer the short stories of Hemingway and Faulkner to their novels.] The books are not ranked, but the first one deserves to be first.

  1. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

  2. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

  3. Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope

  4. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

  5. Bleak House by Charles Dickens

  6. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry

  7. The Edge of Sadness by Edwin O'Connor

  8. Corelli's Mandolin by Louis de Bernieres

  9. The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco

  10. The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame

  11. 1984 by George Orwell

  12. I, Claudius by Robert Graves

  13. Burmese Days by George Orwell

  14. The Way We Live Now by Anthony Trollope

  15. The Road by Cormac McCarthy

  16. The Warden by Anthony Trollope

  17. The Last Hurrah by Edwin O'Connor

  18. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

  19. The Bonfire of the Vanities by Tom Wolfe

  20. A Man in Full by Tom Wolfe

  21. The Aubrey-Maturin series by Patrick O'Brian

  22. Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel

  23. The Known World by Edward P. Jones

  24. The Time of the Assassins by Godfrey Blunden

  25. The Berlin Stories by Christopher Isherwood

  26. A River Town by Thomas Keneally

  27. Provinces of Night by William Gay

  28. Mendelssohn Is On The Roof by Jiri Weil

  29. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

  30. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

  31. East of Eden by John Steinbeck

  32. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

  33. Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

  34. Winter's Tale by Mark Helprin

  35. Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa

  36. Benito Cereno by Herman Melville

  37. Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

  38. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole

  39. Tom Jones by Henry Fielding

  40. The Odyssey by Homer

  41. Moby Dick by Herman Melville

  42. Treblinka by Jean-Francois Steiner

  43. Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry

  44. Life and Fate by Vasily Grossman

  45. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich by Alexander Solzhenitsyn

  46. Flashman by George MacDonald Fraser

  47. Fong and the Indians by Paul Theroux

  48. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

  49. A Good Man Is Hard to Find by Flannery O'Connor

  50. City Primeval by Elmore Leonard


Dan Richwine said...

Good list. I'm ashamed how many I haven't read.

Reka-Zsuzsanna said...

Thank you!!!
& also to the great Cultural Offering for this handy tip (print & take to library!)

Eclecticity said...

12 Down 38 to go. Please send me some time. E.

CincyCat said...

I've read nine of them! That only leaves 41. I wonder how many I can get on my Kindle for free because they are in the public domain... Hmmm...