Skip to content

LibraryThing’s top unread books meme

A couple of friends have posted responses to LibraryThing’s top unread books lists. Aha! I thought, a good way to write about books I have (or, er, haven’t) read.

This is a popular blogging meme, yet none of the blogs (mostly on LiveJournal) include a link to the actual list —perhaps because it’s dynamically generated based on LibraryThing users. For your curiosity, here it is.

I limit my responses to the top 100 books; the algorithm generates 10,000 books, which is a bit too long for this exercise. 😀

  • A boldface title means I’ve read the book.
  • An italicized title means I didn’t finish reading the book.
  • A title that’s been struck through means I couldn’t stand the book, or really have no interest in reading it.
  • An unadorned title means I haven’t read the book, for no particular reason.

Listy below ze cutte. Thanks to Kathleen and Thida for the inspiration!

Based on LibraryThing’s (LT) top unread books as of 4 October 2007. The numbers in parentheses are a tally of LT users who tagged the book as unread.

  1. Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell (149)
  2. Anna Karenina (132)
  3. Crime and Punishment (121)
  4. Catch-22 (117)
  5. One Hundred Years of Solitude (115): I just couldn’t make my way through this brick; it was too much like a dry history textbook.
  6. Wuthering Heights (110)
  7. The Hobbit (104)
  8. Life of Pi (94): Unlike to the vast majority of the world’s reading population, I hated this book. Tedious and insulting to my philosophical tendencies. I wanted to hurl it across the room many times —but I didn’t, ‘coz I’m nice to library books.
  9. The Name of the Rose (91)
  10. Don Quixote (91): Read excerpts during high school.
  11. Moby Dick (86)
  12. Ulysses (84)
  13. Madame Bovary (83)
  14. The Odyssey (83) I read a highly abridged version of this while in middle and high school.
  15. Pride and Prejudice (83): One of my faves, but sadly made into so many disappointing derivatives. (Yes, I loathed the Bridget Jones’ Diary film.)
  16. Jane Eyre (80)
  17. A Tale of Two Cities (80)
  18. The Brothers Karamazov (80)
  19. Guns, Germs, and Steel: the Fates of Human Societies (79): On the to-read list.
  20. War and Peace (78)
  21. Vanity Fair (74)
  22. The Time Traveler’s Wife (73)
  23. The Iliad (73): As with the Odyssey, only managed to read excerpts during school.
  24. Emma (73)
  25. The Blind Assassin (73): Another disappointment; I think I prefer Atwood’s short stories over her longer works.
  26. The Kite Runner (71)
  27. Mrs. Dalloway (70)
  28. Great Expectations (70)
  29. American Gods (68): Fun! Reminds me why I enjoy Gaiman’s writing.
  30. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius (67)
  31. Atlas Shrugged (67): Anthem is a shorter, more easily digestable Rand work.
  32. Reading Lolita in Tehran: a memoir in books (66)
  33. Memoirs of a Geisha (66)
  34. Middlesex (66)
  35. Quicksilver (66)
  36. Wicked: the Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West (65): Another disappointing derivative. Not all derivative works are this mediocre.
  37. The Canterbury Tales (64)
  38. The Historian (63)
  39. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (63)
  40. Love in the Time of Cholera (62)
  41. Brave New World (61): Another favorite.
  42. The Fountainhead (61): See comment for Atlas Shrugged.
  43. Foucault’s Pendulum (61)
  44. Middlemarch (61)
  45. Frankenstein (59)
  46. The Count of Monte Cristo (59)
  47. Dracula (59)
  48. A Clockwork Orange (59)
  49. Anansi Boys (58)
  50. The Once and Future King (57)
  51. The Grapes of Wrath (57): I remember the sense of trepidation I had in high school when starting to read this, especially since I couldn’t stand The Red Pony or The Pearl during middle school. But I ended up really liking it!
  52. The Poisonwood Bible (57)
  53. 1984 (57)
  54. Angels & Demons (56)
  55. The Inferno (56)
  56. The Satanic Verses (55): On my to-read list, sitting on the bookshelf for years…
  57. Sense and Sensibility (55)
  58. The Picture of Dorian Gray (55)
  59. Mansfield Park (55)
  60. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (54)
  61. To the Lighthouse (54)
  62. Tess of the D’Urbervilles (54)
  63. Oliver Twist (54)
  64. Gulliver’s Travels (53)
  65. Les Misérables (53)
  66. The Corrections (53)
  67. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay (52): A fun read, except for the last third of the book. Sigh.
  68. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (52): Had potential, but, hmmm, meh.
  69. Dune (51): I’ve been told to put aside the abomination that was the David Lynch film…but I can’t. There are so many other books I’d rather read.
  70. The Prince (51)
  71. The Sound and the Fury (51): Another high school book where fellow students had warned me about its difficulty. But as with Steinbeck books, I came to like it.
  72. Angela’s Ashes: A Memoir (51)
  73. The God of Small Things (51)
  74. A People’s History of the United States: 1492 – present (51)
  75. Cryptonomicon (50)
  76. Neverwhere (50)
  77. A Confederacy of Dunces (50)
  78. A Short History of Nearly Everything (50)
  79. Dubliners (50): I was a teenager when I read this, and was left rather unimpressed. It wasn’t dreadful, but was rather forgettable, enough so that I’m disinclined to finish it.
  80. The Unbearable Lightness of Being (49)
  81. Beloved (49)
  82. Slaughterhouse-five (49)
  83. The Scarlet Letter (48)
  84. Eats, Shoots & Leaves: the Zero Tolerance Approach to Punctuation (48): On the long to-read list.
  85. The Mists of Avalon (47)
  86. Oryx and Crake (47)
  87. Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed (47)
  88. Cloud Atlas (47)
  89. The Confusion (46)
  90. Lolita (46)
  91. Persuasion (46)
  92. Northanger Abbey (46)
  93. The Catcher in the Rye (46): Not bad, though wasn’t terribly groundbreaking, which speaks of my generation, perhaps.
  94. On the Road (46)
  95. The Hunchback of Notre Dame (45)
  96. Freakonomics: a Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything (45)
  97. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance (45): This was a gift from one of my favorite managers, many years ago. Alas, it’s another one on my bookshelf waiting to be read.
  98. The Aeneid (45)
  99. Watership Down (44) Another childhood favorite.
  100. Gravity’s Rainbow (44)

One comment

  1. If you liked American Gods, you should definitely try Anansi Boys. Some of the same characters, and it’s a universe Gaiman is really comfortable with. I enjoyed it a lot (liked it better than American Gods actually).

    Thursday, 4 October 2007 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

Submit a comment

Your email is never published or shared. Required fields are marked with a red diamond, .