Friday, August 29, 2008

Speaking Of Reading

I was visiting The Scrabble Queen, catching up on her blog when I saw this interesting post about The National Endowment of the Arts The Big Read Program. Normally I don't give either NEA the time of day but I was interested to see how this reading list has changed over time. Some of the entries were questionable to me as far as being classified as literature - they seemed more like pop lit than destined to be classics. And for that matter some of the classics listed or modern literature, I wouldn't waste my brain energy on reading. The older I get, the more I believe in the "Garbage In, Garbage Out" theory. Some people think it's just because of my black and white views or that I am a prude. It's not that I think that certain things are a "sin" to read (some might cause the reader to want to sin, so that could be a consideration in choosing what you read), but that they honestly have little profit. Why not use what little extra time I have reading something profitable or at least entertaining without putting corrupted thoughts into my brain?

So, I was thinking about what I read and have been thinking for awhile about literature since I am adapting the Charlotte Mason method for home schooling. This method uses "living books" and literature as well as hands on time out of doors. So one question I would like to propose, is what children's literature do you recommend reading to my children and having available for them to read?

I also wondered what you all are reading now. I always have a few things going on at once. I can never be monogamous with my reading list or my knitting projects! lol Have you ever read anything that surprised you? One thing I read that surprised me was The Historian, which is a long novel centered around Vlad Dracula. The novel is NOT occult centered but approaches the myth from an historical research view, which I loved. My brain was engaged for the whole read, which was simultaneously relaxing and suspenseful.

What books have you read over and over and over and can't wait to read again? For me it's the Bible and I would probably add the Anne of Green Gables series and The Chronicles of Narnia, but I can't think of any adult literature that has had that same impact. For fiction I have enjoyed Bodie Thoene's series that takes place in WWI and II. And in non fiction, I love the writings of Corrie ten Boom.


*Look at the list and bold those we have read.
*Italicize those we intend to read.
*Underline the books we LOVE . (I can't underline, so they are in purple)


1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell

9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott

12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
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
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame

31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
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
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
5 1 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
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
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
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’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnet
t74 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 Flauber
t86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
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

93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
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
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo

5 comments:

Woven ~N~ Spun said...

I started reading The Shack two days ago. I love Little House on the Prairie books and read several again this summer....just because. And two of my kids get to do a study of Corrie Ten Boom this school year and i am so excited for them.

fruitfulwords said...

Fun post. I've only read a little more than a third of these books. Some of the authors (or books) I've never heard of.

I'm a Little House and Corrie Ten Boom lover too.

Debby said...

Great list of books. I've only read a third? of the list and many of them my children read during their homeschool years even though I did not. My daughter went on to read and enjoy many of Dicken's books. You mentioned Bodie Thoene's series (which I have read and even re-read some). Have you read their newest on the last 12 months of Jesus' life. In my opinion one of their best. I'm in book 7. Have you read the Kite Runner? I was urged not to and couldn't get past the first chapter. I'd be interested in your thoughts

Scrabblequeen said...

There are so many good books for children...I think what they read will have something to do with what they are interested in. I'll be thinking on this and send you a list via email.

susan silverstein said...

Wonderful List! I am brand new to your blog, I just rec'd a "link" to you from one of my news server tags. Being a bibliophile that had the privlege of being a book buyer for a very large public library sytem, I could not help but want to make a contribution to your list.

This book is more for you, than for the kids, right now. Lorna Landvik, a Minnesotan writer, writes like an angel! Her book, Betty Jane's HOuse of Curl was one of the best books I have read in years and years! It's one of those brilliant simple reads that gives you charactors and scenarios you will not forget. Gentle, yet powerful reading. Her charactorization is just brilliant.

I look forward to reading more of Lorna, and I hope, by chance, you happen to come across her. It's not a real long read, so it's a safe risk, but I have confidence you will also love it, just based on the lovely "vibe" I get from your blog.

Good luck with your home schooling project. Your kids are so lucky to have you as their mother!