The Big Official Book List (-o-rama)

While reading Miss Elle’s Crafting, I stumbled across this booky challenge. The idea is, “most people” haven’t read any more than 6 (gasp! only six!) of these Official* Top 100 Books, published by a certain publishing company.

(* not sure how official, having stolen the list myself, but hey, at least we know it’s not Oprah picking the books, right? Right??)

So here’s my take on the list, avec comments.


1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Underline those you intend to read.
3) Italicise the books you LOVE.
4) Reprint this list so we can try and track down these people who’ve read 6 and force books upon them.

1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (ah, Mr Darcy.)
2. The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien (sorry love. It’s a no-go)
3. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte (so much love for this one!)
4. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling (well, I read up to the very last one. So don’t tell me who dies. Even though I think I know. Okay, hang on. Is it Harry??)
5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6. The Bible (what, the entire thing? I’ve read bits of it in school…)
7. Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte (have to say, found Cathy extremely annoying/whiny. And I was expecting to love it.)
8. Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9. His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens (oh Joe, what larks!)
11. Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare (all of them? Crikey.)
15. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier (I can re-read this every year)
16. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien (tried to read it in grade 4 when I was prompted to “choose a book off the classroom bookshelf”. Was not impressed upon discovering that the hobbit of the title was not the dragon on the cover.)
17. Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger (only read for school. Did not enjoy.)
19. The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger (voluntarily read it, but disliked immensely.)
20. Middlemarch – George Eliot (started it; couldn’t get through.)
21. Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
23. Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24. War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams (read and adored this entire series!)
26. Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh (nope, but read Scoop)
27. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll (even did a monologue from the book in drama class one time)
30. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
31. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy (I can never read it as it’s on freaking Oprah’s book list. But remember the episode of Will & Grace when J-Lo is reading it on the subway?)
32. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33. Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
34. Emma – Jane Austen
35. Persuasion – Jane Austen (Emma & Persuasion are my two favourite Austens)
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis (Not really sure why this is here as it’s part of 33…)
37. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
39. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
41. Animal Farm – George Orwell
42. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown (excuse me, WHAT?? Is there an option for “no way in all hell will I ever read this”?)
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
45. The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins (at one time I owned this, but never read it and pretty sure I got rid of it)
46. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood (I’m sorry, how did this get here?)
49. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50. Atonement – Ian McEwan
51. Life of Pi – Yann Martel
52. Dune – Frank Herbert (haha. I feel that after being coerced into watching two movie versions of this, AND listening to part of the audiobook in the car, it should count for having read it)
53. Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons (I saw something nasty in the woodshed…)
54. Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
56. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley (again, forced to read in school)
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon (amazing)
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
63. The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67. Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones’ Diary – Helen Fielding
69. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70. Moby Dick – Herman Melville
71. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens (okay. The thing about this one is, I’m sort of in the middle of reading it. And I have been for a couple years. Ahem. I’ll finish it, no worries.)
72. Dracula – Bram Stoker (read for school, and it was much better than I expected)
73.The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett (I so wanted to be Mary when I was a kid. I even had my grandma knit me a red beret like the one she wore in the movie.)
74. Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75. Ulysses – James Joyce
76. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal – Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession – AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82. Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85. Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87. Charlotte’s Web – EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom (never!)
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
92. The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery (I did two french projects on Saint-Exupery! He was cool! And a pilot!)
93. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94. Watership Down – Richard Adams
95. A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole (haha. In first-year english, we were about to read Waterland. I thought it was Watership Down and was surprised when there were no rabbits.)
96. A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97. The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl (loved when I was a kid!)
100. Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

PS: yes, adding “O-rama” at the end of anything inherently makes that thing more exciting. Hence list-o-rama.

PPS: I have read 32. If I counted correctly.


4 thoughts on “The Big Official Book List (-o-rama)

  1. I have read #s… 99, attempted 94 but hated it, 88, 87, 81, 73, reading 65 in January (required), 58 is on my bedside table, I have a 1908 copy of 57, 11 is on my nightstand, and uh…
    I like Charles Dickens?
    I’m not much of a reader at age 14. I have too many of these books I promise to read but don’t.

  2. I also read 29 and am preparing to read other John Steinbeck stuff. We just finished The Pearl at school and I liked it! I was amazed that I actually liked the school reading for once.

  3. I’ve got 20 on that list, though my numbers may be fudged. If I took it in Novel 209 at Kings and had to hear Dr. Orange compare it to Don Quixote for 3 hours, it counts.
    Also, no way in hell to I have to read all the Harry Potters to know they’re *%*$. On that note, I’ve read 1,2, 4, 7, 12, 16, 22, 25, 33, 36, 49, 51,57, 61, 62, 68, 85, 91, 98, 99. And I’m starting Atonement tonight. so 21. But mine were bigger….. love you :) READ DUNE. Love

  4. I’ve read 62 of them, but I’m really old. It’s an odd list of various genres and time-periods.

    Thank you for posting it!


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