So I’ve seen many of these kinds of lists. The ones titled some variation of “____ Books to Read Before You Die” and most often the books on their list are ones I have no interest in nor any desire to read. These lists lead me to wonder who the people making the lists were and what made them so qualified to judge my needs and desires in the material I choose as literature. Being a POC, I have to be aware of such things because neocolonialism is pervasive and I’m a contrary creature anyway. Goodreads tells me that in my almost 30 years, I have managed to read 3528 novels and that seems like a lot to me. And the number does not even include the gajillions of romance novels I inhaled during my formative years (what that says about my writing is something I do not want to think about) but to get to the point, I feel like the number legitimizes my right to make a list. (Who am I kidding? The number means nothing. I’m just grasping.)
This 100 Books is going to be a feature over here at Bibliophilic Monologues as I walk through the books. There are no genre limitations and the only condition that exists is that I must have 100% loved the novel. There ought to be ten parts to this as I list books 1-100 in groups of ten. So without further ado, here are the first ten:
1. The Harry Potter series – J. K. Rowling
I grew up with these. I should not have to explain this.
2. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
This book is so important for so many reasons, reasons too numerous to get into here. It’s relevant and pertinent and perhaps always will be.
3. Gone with the Wind – Margaret Mitchell
“Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn.” That just about says it all for me.
4. Where the Sidewalk Ends – Shel Silverstein
No matter how many times I read this book, I still feel like I take a long draught of childhood every single time I do. Potent.
5. The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank
Her courage and life despite its brevity or perhaps because of it deserves to be immortalized.
6. Life of Pi – Yann Martel
The movie by Ang Lee based on the book was amazing but I feel the book was even better. Or perhaps just as brilliant in a different way.
7. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy and its sequels – Douglas Adams
If you haven’t heard of this book yet, you need to get yourself to the nearest bookstore and get a copy.
8. Sunshine – Robin McKinley
I will forever mourn the fact that there is no sequel forthcoming.
9. Neverwhere – Neil Gaiman
I’ve read about two or three of Gaiman’s works and out of them, I contend that this is probably his best. Of course, I have yet to read other newer stuff by him so my opinion might change.
10. The Twentieth Wife – Indu Sundaresan
If you like reading about Indian history, the Moghuls, and just a good historical fiction with strong, magnetic characters, this will be right up your alley.
That’s one to ten, you guys. Stay tuned for more next week!