106 books of pretension

I haven't posted in a while. To remedy this, I've decided to use some memetically generated content, rather than bothering to actually write something original. I noticed this particular meme on some of the science blogs I read. It's a bit stale now, but it's my kind of fun.

Below are "106 books of pretension," compiled from the books most frequently marked unread by Library Thing users.

Books I've read are in bold; books I've stared but haven't finished are in italics; books I own but haven't read are marked with an dagger (†). I was tempted to annotate all the books, but you can probably read about books I love elsewhere on this blog. So I'll only annotate (ahem make excuses about) the books I haven't finished or the books I own but haven't read yet†.

Here is the executive summary for those of you who don't want to slog through all of the titles:

  • Read: 55

  • Haven't finished: 5

  • Own, but haven't read†: 9

And here's the list:

  1. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell† - Joanne started reading this, but she found it pretty boring. If anyone out there read this and enjoyed it, let me know. If you're convincing enough, I'll give it a go.

  2. Anna Karenina

  3. Crime and Punishment

  4. Catch-22

  5. One Hundred Years of Solitude

  6. Wuthering Heights

  7. The Silmarillion - I could never really get into this. I've read Lord of the Rings three times, but I've never managed to finish this

  8. Life of Pi : a novel

  9. The Name of the Rose

  10. Don Quixote

  11. Moby Dick - I got most of the way through this book, then I got to an incredibly vivid description of whale carcasses floating abandoned in the sea. It made me sick to my stomach. I put the book down, and I've never picked it up again. This is a book I really need to finish.

  12. Ulysses - I started this one summer when I was in University. I had at least two books of annotations, and I was ready for anything. I got close to halfway through, then the fall semester started. I never quite had the time to finish it.

  13. Madame Bovary

  14. The Odyssey

  15. Pride and Prejudice

  16. Jane Eyre

  17. The Tale of Two Cities

  18. The Brothers Karamazov

  19. Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies† - I bought this a while ago in at the used book stall on the beach in Brighton. I keep coming across references to this and other books by Jared M. Diamond in a number of books I'm readying (usually biology related), so it's quite likely I'll actually read this soon.

  20. War and Peace

  21. Vanity Fair

  22. The Time Traveler’s Wife† - Joanne read this and liked it a lot. I think it's currently on loan to someone. If we ever get it back, I'll read it.

  23. The Iliad

  24. Emma

  25. The Blind Assassin† - I need to read this. I like Margaret Atwood a lot, but I just haven't gotten around to reading this one. Actually, this one may be on loan, too. I couldn't find it on our shelves, but I'm pretty sure it was at one point.

  26. The Kite Runner

  27. Mrs. Dalloway

  28. Great Expectations

  29. American Gods

  30. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

  31. Atlas Shrugged

  32. Reading Lolita in Tehran : a memoir in books

  33. Memoirs of a Geisha† - Another one that Joanne has read (twice). She says that it's a much better book than the movie they made out of it. I'd like to read it to find out if that's true.

  34. Middlesex

  35. Quicksilver

  36. Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West

  37. The Canterbury tales

  38. The Historian : a novel

  39. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

  40. Love in the Time of Cholera

  41. Brave New world

  42. The Fountainhead

  43. Foucault’s Pendulum

  44. Middlemarch

  45. Frankenstein

  46. The Count of Monte Cristo

  47. Dracula

  48. A Clockwork Orange

  49. Anansi Boys

  50. The Once and Future King

  51. The Grapes of Wrath

  52. The Poisonwood Bible : a novel† - This was in a £1 book bin at Eridge station, which means it's been sitting unread on my shelf for about three years. The shame.

  53. 1984

  54. Angels & Demons

  55. The Inferno

  56. The Satanic Verses† - Of all the Rushdie I've read, how have I not read this one? One day, very soon, I'm going to read this.

  57. Sense and Sensibility

  58. The Picture of Dorian Gray

  59. Mansfield Park

  60. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest

  61. To the Lighthouse

  62. Tess of the D’Urbervilles

  63. Oliver Twist

  64. Gulliver’s Travels

  65. Les Misérables

  66. The Corrections

  67. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay

  68. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

  69. Dune

  70. The Prince

  71. The Sound and the Fury - I may have actually finished this. I was a bit preoccupied at the time. Most of it was read on a plane between the France and the U.S. In any case, I need to reread this.

  72. Angela’s Ashes : a memoir

  73. The God of Small Things

  74. A People’s History of the United States : 1492-present

  75. Cryptonomicon

  76. Neverwhere

  77. A Confederacy of Dunces† - I think we own this, though I couldn't find it on our shelves. I know Joanne has read it. I guess I should probably read it, but I really don't want to. I think I just got sick of hearing about it in the early '90s. In fact, I feel like I've read it already. If you've read this one, and think I should read it, let me know.

  78. A Short History of Nearly Everything

  79. Dubliners

  80. The Unbearable Lightness of Being

  81. Beloved

  82. Slaughterhouse-five

  83. The Scarlet Letter

  84. Eats, Shoots & Leaves

  85. The Mists of Avalon

  86. Oryx and Crake : a novel

  87. Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed

  88. Cloud Atlas

  89. The Confusion

  90. Lolita

  91. Persuasion

  92. Northanger Abbey

  93. The Catcher in the Rye

  94. On the Road

  95. The Hunchback of Notre Dame

  96. Freakonomics : a rogue economist explores the hidden side of everything

  97. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance : an inquiry into values

  98. The Aeneid

  99. Watership Down

  100. Gravity’s Rainbow† - I picked this up at the gift shop at Herstmonceux Castle. That was almost a year ago. It's probably time to actually read the book.

  101. The Hobbit

  102. In Cold Blood : a true account of a multiple murder and its consequences

  103. White Teeth

  104. Treasure Island

  105. David Copperfield

  106. The Three Musketeers - Technically, this one is unfinished, but I'm reading it right now.

If you've made it this far, you are obviously at least as pretentious as I am, and are hereby tagged. Which of these books have you read? Which didn't you finished? Which do you own, but have yet to read?

Update: I've closed comments on this post due to excessive spam, but if you have something to say, you can always send me a message directly.