My top 10 books – not necessarily my favorite to read, but that I recognize are best in quality. Keep in mind that I haven’t read all of the classics, and I do try and give young adult books their fair share.
In order from best to (relatively) worst:
1) A Christmas Carol – Dickens’ best book
2) Brave New World – Eat your heart out, 1984
3) The Silmarillion – Yes, higher than The Lord of the Rings. Much more difficult to read, and I still haven’t finished it, but it’s practically poetry, and the level of thought and detail is astonishing
4) The Lord of the Rings – Naturally.
5) The Book Thief – I’ve already talked about why I love this one. Beautifully written prose, wonderfully drawn characters, and some powerfully emotional scenes
6) To Kill a Mockingbird – I think a lot of the conservatives who read this one will roll their eyes, but I’m sorry, it’s a terrific book
7) The Magician’s Nephew – Probably the best book in “The Chronicles of Narnia”
8) A Wrinkle in Time – Meg is whiny and the ending is cloying, but the the three Mrs. W’s are superb characters and Camazotz and IT are fantastic
9) Romeo and Juliet – I know, I know, I’m cheating, it’s not technically a book, but it’s too great not to include – any list of great English literature is incomplete without Shakespeare
10) A Tale of Two Cities – This is the lowest because the first half of it is as boring as mud, but the second half is about as great as literature can get. Sidney Carton is as well-drawn a character as you’ll ever find
Books I need to read: Les Miserables, 1984, and probably some Russian stuff, though I can’t imagine I’d like them.
Any thoughts? What do you guys think?