Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Winter Reading

The Telegraph came up with a list of '100 novels everyone should read'. And because I am obviously self indulgent enough to publish my own blog, I am also arrogant enough to believe that I should have my own list. So without further adieu:

10 novels Melissa thinks anyone who feels like it should read

10. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J.K. Rowling
It's sold over 400 million copies worldwide. Do I have to justify it?

9. The Diary of A Young Girl by Anne Frank
If you're:
a. a cynic who has little faith in humanity
b. an idealistic dreamer
c. both (like me) should read this. Especially if you're over the age of 12 and you haven't read it in a while. Or ever.

8. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett
I've already expressed my admiration for this book once before. But I truly think that it conveys such a simple and profound message: help things grow.

7. The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemmingway
I think if you're wandering through life trying to figure out what on earth to do with yourself, you might relate to Jake Barnes and his buddies.

6. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
In my opinion, if the first book you ever write gains this much success and you don't even feel the need to publish ever again, well, you must be pretty confident you've done something right.

5. The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
Her prose is stunning, beautiful, perfect.

4. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
Murakami simply amazes me. This is not my favorite of his books. However, it is a starter book. And one that will get you hooked. And I want you to get hooked. I want you to get hooked so badly that you cry about it (tears of happiness of course)

3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
I'm not really sure you should read this. I just know that if you're 15 years old and you feel like the ugly girl chewing your hair in the back of the classroom, you might feel better after you read this.

2. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
I have never before been so engrossed in a fictional world. And, I'd like to marry Howard Rourke. The man. Not the symbol.

1. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
It will blow your freaking mind.

I don't really feel I am any kind of authority on books. And you may have read all of these books already. And this list could obviously change tomorrow (like, say, after I finish Women in Love by D.H. Lawrence, which is practically begging me to be on this list!) But, ya know, it's winter. And you might be cold. And you might not feel like leaving your house ever again. You might feel like reading. And these books are probably pretty cheap on Amazon.


  1. Melissa, I'm embarassed to confess that there are books on your list that are also on my "Been Meaning To Read For 100 Years list."

    I just recently finished a great-don't-even-think-about-putting-me-down novel: Lush Life by Richard Price. He co-wrote The Wire. Can I interest you?

  2. I'd like to see your 'Been meaning to read for 100 years list'. Maybe I can lend you something. I think mine is overflowing. I have heard very good things about Lush Life. I am very interested!

  3. Excellent list. So refreshing to see someone so passionate about reading, characters and books.

  4. Peachy, glad you enjoyed the list. It's everchanging, so keep an eye out for more lists in the future :o) Would love to hear some of your favorites too.