Sunday, December 12, 2010

1,001 Books to Read Before You Die Challenge

Today, I finished reading Junky by William S. Burroughs. I did not realize when I started reading it that this book is on the 1,001 Books You Must Read Before You Die list. Most book bloggers are probably familiar with the infamous: 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die list. I picked up a copy of this compilation a few years ago, and I have been plugging away at the list ever since. As I am getting close to scratching off my first set of "100 completed," I thought I would compile and post my list in an easily accessible place. Each time I scratch out another 100 books, starting with this first 100, I will offer up a Giveaway - deal?!

Also, a lot of these books are great, obviously, and could be interesting conversation starters. Is anyone else out there battling their way through this massive list? Thoughts/ideas? How is your own progress - and how do you keep track of it? I have tried to keep these books in roughly the order they appear in the book (by century).

My List (Progress: 118 of 1,001)

19. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time – Mark Haddon
33. Middlesex – Jeffrey Eugenides
49. Life of Pi – Yann Martel
54. White Teeth – Zadie Smith

87. Glamorama – Bret Easton Ellis
97. Jack Maggs – Peter Carey
116. The Reader – Bernhard Schlink
180. The Things They Carried – Tim O’Brien
183. Possession – A.S. Byatt
195. Like Water for Chocolate – Laura Esquivel
201. The Beautiful Room is Empty – Edmund White
242. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
246. Queer - William S. Burroughs
254. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
256. The Unbearable Lightness of Being – Milan Kundera
271. A Boy’s Own Story – Edmund White
276. The House of the Spirits – Isabel Allende
288. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
301. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
303. The World According to Garp – John Irving
335. Ragtime - E.L. Doctorow
340. Breakfast of Champions – Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
360. The Wild Boys – William S. Burroughs
375. Slaughterhouse-five – Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
411. Wide Sargasso Sea – Jean Rhys
413. The Crying of Lot 49 – Thomas Pynchon
427. Cat’s Cradle – Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
433. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
436. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest – Ken Kesey
437. A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
445. Franny and Zooey – J.D. Salinger
452. The Violent Bear it Away – Flannery O’Connor
456. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
461. Naked Lunch – William S. Burroughs
469. Pluck the Bud and Destroy the Offspring – Kenzaburo Oe
477. The Once and Future King – T.H. White
484. On the Road – Jack Kerouac
494. The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien
508. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
515. Junkie – William S. Burroughs
516. The Adventures of Augie March – Saul Bellow
521. The Old Man and the Sea – Ernest Hemingway
529. The Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger
547. Nineteen Eighty-Four - George Orwell
563. Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
564. Animal Farm – George Orwell
574. The Little Prince – Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
587. For Whom the Bell Tolls – Ernest Hemingway
589. The Power and the Glory – Graham Greene
592. The Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
608. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
609. Their Eyes Were Watching God – Zora Neale Hurston
610. The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkien
619. Gone With the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
623. At the Mountains of Madness – H.P. Lovecraft
629. The House in Paris – Elizabeth Bowen
636. Tropic of Cancer – Henry Miller
638. Tender is the Night – F. Scott Fitzgerald
643. The Autobiography of Alice B. Toklas – Gertrude Stein
663. A Farewell to Arms – Ernest Hemingway
667. All Quiet on the Western Front – Erich Maria Remarque
671. The Sound and the Fury – William Faulkner
673. Look Homeward, Angel - Thomas Wolfe
686. To The Lighthouse – Virginia Woolf
689. The Sun Also Rises – Ernest Hemingway
699. The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
741. Of Human Bondage - W. Somerset Maugham
750. Death in Venice – Thomas Mann
752. Ethan Frome – Edith Wharton
768. Young Törless – Robert Musil
780. Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
784. Sister Carrie – Theodore Dreiser

788. The Awakening – Kate Chopin
790. The War of the Worlds – H.G. Wells
794. Dracula - Bram Stoker
801. The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Perkins Gilman
804. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
809. The Picture of Dorian Gray – Oscar Wilde
820. The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde – Robert Louis Stevenson
821. The Mayor of Casterbridge – Thomas Hardy
825. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn – Mark Twain
829. The Death of Ivan Ilyich – Leo Tolstoy
840. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
846. Far from the Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
857. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
861. The Idiot – Fyodor Dostoevsky
866. Journey to the Centre of the Earth – Jules Verne
868. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
876. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
879. The Mill on the Floss – George Eliot
880. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
883. A Tale of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
889. Walden – Henry David Thoreau
894. The Blithedale Romance – Nathaniel Hawthorne
896. Moby-Dick – Herman Melville
897. The Scarlet Letter – Nathaniel Hawthorne
902. Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë
904. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Brontë
905. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
911. The Pit and the Pendulum – Edgar Allan Poe
913. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
916. The Fall of the House of Usher – Edgar Allan Poe
931. Frankenstein – Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley
932. Northanger Abbey – Jane Austen
938. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen

959. The Sorrows of Young Werther – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
970. Candide – Voltaire
987. Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe

994. Euphues: The Anatomy of Wit – John Lyly


  1. thanks for sharing your list, Adam. The only ones you list that I've read but didn't see on the updated list are The Mayor of Casterbridge (college read) and A Christmas Carol (pleasure read). It's interesting that they keep changing the list...If they do that how are you ever supposed to read them all before you die?

  2. Interesting to see this challenge Adam because I just created this challenge for myself. My friend gifted me this book for Christmas and thought the only way I will plug through it is to challenge myself. :D
    I wonder how different your edition is from mine...

    By the way: I like that you set up a separate Challenge blog. Very neat, and orderly. I think I may do this myself.