The BBC Book List


Image by Robert Burdock via Flickr

I’ve had several friends post this in Facebook this week.  Since I find it interesting, I thought I’d give it a go…

The BBC believes most people will have read only 6 of the 100 books listed here.

Instructions: Copy this into your NOTES.

Bold those books you’ve read in their entirety.

Italicize the ones you started but didn’t finish or read only an excerpt.

My additional notes are in blue.

I’ve read 37 of these books in their entirety, and there are 10 that I’ve started but didn’t finish.  I find this a bit sad for an English major and a High school English Teacher.  At least now I have a list of novels to read through!

After you see what I’ve read, comment with your thoughts and what you’ve read… (Or not, after all reading is not a competition! I’m betting that we’re all well over 6 books, and I am curious to see the common ground).

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien – umm…this is a trilogy…I’ve read all 3.

3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte – favorite book of all time!

4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling

5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

6 The Bible not straight through, but over time and in chunks

7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell

9 His Dark MaterialsPhilip Pullman – Also a trilogy…His first book, Northern Lights (known as The Golden Compass in America) was a huge controversy in the Christian world…I wrote a review, which you can read by clicking HERE.

10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott – I even played Meg in the Mesquite Community Theater production!

12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles Thomas Hardy

13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller

14 Complete Works of Shakespeare – most of them, I’m sure…but his works are quite extensive…

15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier – close 2nd for favorite book

16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien

17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk

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

24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy

25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Douglas Adams

27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck

29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll – and the sequel

30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

32 David CopperfieldCharles 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  – wouldn’t this go with #33??

37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini – reading it now!

38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres

39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden

40 Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne

41 Animal FarmGeorge 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

51 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 Burnett

74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson

75 Ulysses – James Joyce

76 The Inferno – Dante

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 – E.B. 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 – again, wouldn’t this part part of “The Complete Works of Shakespeare”?

99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo


6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Michelle Stie
    Nov 20, 2010 @ 19:00:47

    First, Jane Eyre is my favorite book, too! 🙂

    This is such an oddball list. I understand that the list was going to reflect more European selections, given that its publisher is the BBC. However, the American selections are strange–Mitch Albom is a case in point. And shouldn’t the list have more Booker Prize winners than it does, coming from Britain? If you are going to have Americans on the list at all, shouldn’t Twain, Faulkner, and Morrison show up? It is fun to think about, however, and the list did generate some interesting discussion amongst my grad school friends about what a “literate population” should read.


  2. Judith
    Nov 22, 2010 @ 17:20:19

    1, 2 (the whole series), 6, 10, 11, 16, 29, 30, 33 (the whole series), 34, 36 (part of 33), 40, 41, 46 (the whole series), 54, 57, 65, 70, 73, 81, 87, 98, 99

    There are probably more on the list, but I’m not 100% if I read them or not in high school. They do sound familiar though. And some of these I’ve seen then movie to.


  3. lindsey radde
    Nov 23, 2010 @ 04:36:55

    that’s funny. you can totally tell we went to the same high school.
    here’s the link to my facebook bbc list.!/note.php?note_id=54331585877


  4. Bud Parks
    Nov 24, 2010 @ 10:30:14

    Does it count if you saw the Movie?


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