the best hundred novels challenge

i’m procrastinating. that’s got to be it. i’ve written twenty pages in four days which is five times more than i’ve written in six months. i’m on a roll. i should be writing. but yesterday was show us your books day, and i arrived late to that party, as usual. and i’d been feeling guilty for not being a better reader of others’ bloggies, so i put the picky reads roll back in my sidebar in hopes that its presence might encourage me to be more social (because i’m not social. AT ALL. i’m hot. it’s may in texas, and i’m hot inside my house). anyway, i was looking through my feed and came across nathan bransford’s the best hundred novels challenge. and i was all: OOH! I CAN MAKE ANOTHER LIST! let me at it. so apparently the only writing i’ll be doing today involves banging on the keys for this here blog. it’s half past three in the afternoon, and i’m still in my jammies, yall. whatever.

the rules: there’s only one. you can only name books you’ve actually read. so there goes a huge chunk of the literary canon. i graduated with an english degree but was never assigned anything by dickens, austen, either of the brontes, none of the russians… there was some faulkner and hemingway in there, but i never read more than a few paragraphs. the rest of the stuff held little to no appeal. unless you’re teaching, an english degree’s little more than a license to bullshit, and in five years of studies, i got really good at it. i did get around to reading austen at some point; ain’t no way she’s making this list, but god love her for paving the way. i spent freshman and sophomore year at a small women’s college in the middle of nowhere. sure, we read. we read smut. and as i got older i graduated to good love stories and discovered i liked writing those as much as i enjoy reading them, so yeah… there’s gonna be a lot of love on this list. it was jumbled, but the obsessive-compulsive streak my father gave me couldn’t have that, so now it’s alphabetized by author; if there’re multiple works by an author, they’re either listed by preference or series order. so of the books that i have read, these are the one that i think are the best. those in bold are the ones i can heartily recommend.

love rosie. ahern.
p.s. i love you. ahern.
thirteen reasons why. asher.
a man called ove. backman
a school for unusual girls. baldwin.
dandelion wine. bradbury.
fahrenheit 451. bradbury.
best kept secrets. brown.
french silk. brown.
the good earth. buck.
the perks of being a wallflower. chbosky.
nick and norah’s infinite playlist. cohn and levithan.
more than friends. delinsky.
coast road. delinksy.
suddenly. delinsky.
for my daughters. delinsky.
our mutual friend. dickens.
the language of flowers. diffenbaugh.
if i stay. forman.
where she went. forman.
 just one day. forman.
the saving graces. gaffney.
caraval. garber.
something borrowed. giffin.
something blue. giffin.
i see you everywhere. glass.
the princess bride. goldman.
one wore blue. graham.
one wore gray. graham.
and one rode west. graham.
straight talking. jane green.
bookends. jane green.
jemima j. jane green.
the fault in our stars. john green.
the rainmaker. grisham.
the maltese falcon. hammett.
red dragon. harris.
the silence of the lambs. harris.
splintered. howard.
the duff. keplinger.
the secret life of bees. kidd.
a separate peace. knowles.
a wrinkle in time. l’engle.
a wind in the door. l’engle.
we are okay. lacour.
love only once. lindsey.
tender rebel. lindsey.
gentle rogue. lindsey.
the truth about alice. mathieu.
whitney my love. mcnaught.
once and always. mcnaught.
paradise. mcnaught.
something wonderful. mcnaught.
almost heaven. mcnaught.
gone with the wind. mitchell.
one day. nicholls.
the time traveler’s wife. niffenegger.
all the bright places. niven.
1984. orwell.
wonder. palacio.
finding paris. prebel.
redeeming love. rivers.
daring to dream. roberts.
holding the dream. roberts.
finding the dream. roberts.
born in fire. roberts.
born in ice. roberts.
seaswept. roberts.
rising tides. roberts.
inner harbor. roberts.
tears of the moon. roberts.
heart of the sea. roberts.
honest illusions. roberts.
the macgregor brides. roberts.
the macgregor grooms. roberts.
the macgregors: alan and grant. roberts.
landline. rowell.
eleanor and park. rowell.
attachments. rowell.
fangirl. rowell.
harry potter and the sorcerer’s stone. rowling.
harry potter and the chamber of secrets. rowling.
harry potter and the prisoner of azkaban. rowling.
harry potter and the order of the phoenix. rowling.
harry potter and the half-blood prince. rowling.
harry potter and the deathly hallows. rowling.
the lovely bones. sebold.
right before your eyes. shanman.
love is a mix tape. sheffield.
the notebook. sparks.
a walk to remember. sparks.
the gamble. spencer.
separate beds. spencer.
the help. kathryn stockett.
fear and loathing in las vegas. thompson.
the lord of the rings. tolkien.
in her shoes. weiner.
the divine secrets of the ya-ya sisterhood. wells.
refuge. williams.
the book thief. zusak.

3 responses to “the best hundred novels challenge”

  1. I graduated with an English degree too and remember my graduation when the speaker told us all (and of course our families) that we should get used to saying "do you want fries with that?" Uhm, thanks. LOL. For the record, I've never had to say that.

    Anyway, I love your compulsive disorder sorting/categorizing! I am much the same way. Also there are some great titles on your list! I looooved the Clan of the Cavebear books. Did you ever read the latest? They kind of lost their appeal after a while for me. Also Eleanor and Park <3 I hated A Separate Peace when I read it in HS but don't remember anything about it. Maybe I'd feel differently about it now? XOXO

  2. I haven't read anything you listed either. People assume that because I read a lot that I've read all of it, but I just have no interest. I don't read ALL crap, but there's a lot of it. Haha!

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