>10 Books to Read Before . . .

>. . . you know. I just saw a list (here, but I don’t know how long the link will work) that purportedly is 10 Books to Read Before You Die. It includes The Bible, Gone With the Wind, Lord of the Rings, the Harry Potter Series, The Stand (Stephen King), both The DaVinci Code and Angels and Demons by Dan Brown, To Kill a Mockingbird, Atlas Shrugged and The Catcher in the Rye. It turns out, though, that the list is from a poll that asked people to name their favorite books. That’s something else, no?

So, forget this ridiculous list. I’m working on my own, and I welcome comments naming your favorite books.

Here are fifteen of my favorites (although, in truth, the titles in many cases are representative of the whole body of work–Greene, Hesse, Mishima, etc.):

Affliction, Russell Banks

The Quiet American, Graham Greene

Catch 22, Joseph Heller

The Glass Bead Game, Hermann Hesse

Lost in the City, Edward P. Jones

Sometimes a Great Notion, Ken Kesey

All the Pretty Horses, Cormac McCarthy

Moby Dick, Herman Melville

Temple of Dawn, Yukio Mishima

A Mercy, Toni Morrison

Going After Cacciato, Tim O’Brien

Enormous Changes at the Last Minute, Grace Paley

Gravity’s Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon

Midnight’s Children, Salman Rushdie

The Spectator Bird, Wallace Stegner

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