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Sunday, 26 January 2014

The Hundred Book Challenge



Recently, David Rain, a lecturer and writer, said that he always asked his students three questions. 1) Why do you want to be a writer? 2) How often do you write? 3) What do you read?

His original post can be viewed here: http://davidrain.net/the-hundred-book-challenge/

Although I don't agree with all of his thoughts, I found his challenge interesting. He proposed that he though his students, and all wannabe writers, should have a list of 100 books that they love. His only criteria was that you could only list one book by each author.

I decided to make my list of 100 books. I did try to keep to David's criteria, but on a few occasions, I decided to bend the rules with a few books/authors I absolutely love! My main criteria for the rest of the list was 1) books I have read more than once, 2) books that have stuck in my mind and, 3) books that have changed my thinking in some way.

So, with no further ado, here's my list! (By no means definitive and I may have forgotten a few - I have read a lot of books!)


1. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
2. The New York Trilogy by Paul Auster
3. Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman
4. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
5. Death at Intervals by Jose Saramago
6. Now You're One of Us by Asa Nonami
7. Hardboiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami
8. The Woman Before Me by Ruth Dugdall
9. The Woman in the Dunes by Kobo Abe
10. Unwind by Neal Shusterman
11. Northern Lights by Philip Pullman
12. Regeneration by Pat Barker
13. Howl and other poems by Allen Ginsberg
14. Selected poems by John Keats
15. Death and the Penguin by Andrey Kurkov
16. More Beer by Jakob Arjouni
17. Only Forward by Michael Marshall Smith
18. How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe by Charles Yu
19. The House of Sleep by Jonathon Coe
20. Zygal: A book of mysteries and translations by bp nichol
21. Mean Time by Carol Ann Duffy
22. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
23. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
24. Enduring Love by Ian McEwan
25. The Big Sleep by Raymond Chandler
26. Strangers by Taichi Yamada
27. Out of Everywhere: Linguistically Innovative Poetry by Women in North America & the UK
28. John Dies at the End by David Wong
29. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness
30. Matilda by Roald Dahl
31. Oi! Get off our train by John Burningham
32. The Sad Book by Michael Rosen
33. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
34. Othello by William Shakespeare
35. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi
36. If Nobody Speaks of Remarkable Things by John McGregor
38. Under the Net by Iris Murdoch
39. Before I go to Sleep by S.J. Watson
40. Veronica Decides to Die by Paolo Coelho
41. The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer
42. The Murders in the Rue Morgue by Edgar Allen Poe
43. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
44. Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
45. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
46. The Midnight Club by Christopher Pike
47. The End of the Affair by Graham Greene
48. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
49. Beloved by Toni Morrison
50. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling
51. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
52. Birdsong by Sebastian Faulks
53. The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
54. The 3:15 Experiment by Lee Ann Brown, Danika Dinsmore, Jen Hofer, and Bernadette Mayer
55. Selected poems by Samuel Taylor Coleridge
56. The Hound of the Baskervilles by Sherlock Holmes
57. Seven Pages Missing by Steve McCaffery
58. The Fluxus Experience by Hannah Higgins
59. Make Lemonade by Virginia Euwer Wolfe
60. He Died with his Eyes Open by Derek Raymond
61. Hunting Unicorns by Bella Pollen
62. The Collector by John Fowles
63. Once by Morris Gleitzman
64. Labor Day by Joyce Maynard
65. The Ferris Wheel by Frederick Morel
66. The Good Thief’s Guide to Berlin by Chris Ewan
67. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
68. Every Day by David Levithan
69. The Maltese Falcon by Dashiell Hammett
70. Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler
71. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
72. Good Morning, Midnight by Jean Rhys
73. Vox by Nicholson Baker
74. Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
75.  The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
76. The Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 ¾ by Sue Townsend
77. Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut
78. The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton
79. Divergent by Veronica Roth
80. Legend by Marie Lu
81. The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg
82. Paradise Lost by John Milton
83. A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers by Xiaolu Guo
84. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time by Mark Haddon
85. No and Me by Delphine de Vegan
86. Hotel Iris by Yoko Ogawa
87. Crossfire by Miyuki Miyabe
88. Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
89. Junk by Melvin Burgess
90. Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
91. I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga
92. Down the Rabbit Hole by Juan Pablo Villalobos
93. The Nothing Man by Jim Thompson
94. Naoko by Keigo Higashino
95. Transgressions by Sarah Dunant
96. Tender Buttons by Gertrude Stein
97. A Matter of Death and Life by Andrey Kurkov
98. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
99. Pigeon English by Stephen Kelman
100. Someone’s in the House by Samuel Bonner

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