The BBC 100 book meme

I picked this up from Evolving Thoughts. You might remember a little while ago I made a post about the Get A Life Movie Meme. This is a similar thing for books.

In April 2003 the BBC’s Big Read began the search for the nation’s best-loved novel. Listed below are the top 100 (which I think I may have posted about before, but that doesn’t really matter now). The list is pretty UK centric, being a BBC project, but that’s all right with me.

The idea is:

1) Look at the list and put an ‘x’ after those you have read.

2) Add a ‘+’ to the ones you love.

3) Add a ‘*’ to those you plan on reading.

4) Tally your total.

So, after proving that I have no life with the movie meme, let’s see how I do with the books…

1. The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien x
2. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
3. His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman x
4. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams x
5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling x
6. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee x
7. Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne x
8. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell x
9. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis x
10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
11. Catch-22, Joseph Heller x
12. Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
13. Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
14. Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
15. The Catcher in the Rye, JD Salinger x
16. The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame x
17. Great Expectations, Charles Dickens x
18. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
19. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres
20. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
21. Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
22. Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone, JK Rowling x
23. Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling x
24. Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling x
25. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien x
26. Tess Of The D’Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
27. Middlemarch, George Eliot
28. A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving
29. The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck x
30. Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll x
31. The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
32. One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez
33. The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
34. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens x
35. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl x
36. Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson x
37. A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
38. Persuasion, Jane Austen
39. Dune, Frank Herbert x
40. Emma, Jane Austen
41. Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery
42. Watership Down, Richard Adams x
43. The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
44. The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas x
45. Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
46. Animal Farm, George Orwell x
47. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens x
48. Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
49. Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
50. The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher
51. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett x
52. Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck x
53. The Stand, Stephen King x
54. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
55. A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
56. The BFG, Roald Dahl x
57. Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome
58. Black Beauty, Anna Sewell x
59. Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
60. Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
61. Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
62. Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden
63. A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
64. The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
65. Mort, Terry Pratchett x
66. The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton x
67. The Magus, John Fowles
68. Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman x
69. Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett x
70. Lord Of The Flies, William Golding x
71. Perfume, Patrick Süskind
72. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
73. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett x
74. Matilda, Roald Dahl
75. Bridget Jones’s Diary, Helen Fielding
76. The Secret History, Donna Tartt
77. The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins
78. Ulysses, James Joyce
79. Bleak House, Charles Dickens x
80. Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson
81. The Twits, Roald Dahl
82. I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith
83. Holes, Louis Sachar
84. Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake
85. The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy
86. Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson
87. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley x
88. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
89. Magician, Raymond E Feist x
90. On The Road, Jack Kerouac
91. The Godfather, Mario Puzo x
92. The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
93. The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett x
94. The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
95. Katherine, Anya Seton
96. Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer
97. Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel García Márquez
98. Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson
99. The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot
100. Midnight’s Children, Salman Rushdie

Well, I’ve read 43 from that list of 100. Not bad. Of course, the list came out at a time when fantasy was popular again (with Harry Potter, Narnia and all that stuff having a bit of a renaissance) so it sort of skewed the list towards a lot of speculative fiction. I’m always going to score well there.

I can’t be arsed with the ‘+’ and ‘*’ tags. Consider yourself tagged if you read this far.

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8 thoughts on “The BBC 100 book meme

  1. Yes. Why?

    According to wikipedia:

    “The Alchemist was originally written in Portuguese and has since been translated into 67 languages, winning the Guiness World Record for most translated book by a living author. It has sold more than 65 million copies in more than 150 countries, becoming one of the best-selling books in history.”

    Do you have issues with it?

  2. Yep, I suppose it’s a bit inevitable it would make it into some list. From what I’ve seen it’s crap almost at the level of inanity of The Secret (glad at least that wasn’t included!)

  3. Yeah, these lists are always more of a snapshot of a time than a really accurate list. It’s all about current trends. A list done today is bound to have Stephenie Meyer and her emo vampire teen schlock on it, for example.

    Perhaps a better method would be to make a list based on sales figures and reviews over all time… complicated, but potentially accurate.

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