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[personal profile] lavvyan
I've seen it all over my friends- and reading-list, and it looked like fun? Plus, I can never resist rambling about books. ;)

I have to say, though, I'm a bit surprised at the books that are considered "classics" and at the absence of others (as well as the fact that I've read so many of them – yay for not playing well with other kids?). Surely it would have been possible to list Bradbury and Asimov not quite so often and add, say, Alan Dean Foster's Homanx Cycle? Surely that one's not considered Young Adult? What about Marion Zimmer Bradley's Darkover books? And I doubt that anyone thinks Jim Butcher's Codex Alera the more readable of his series.

Anyway. It's bold the ones you've read, italic the ones you intend to read, underline series/books you've read part of, and strike the ones you never intend to read.


1. The Lord of the Rings Trilogy, by J.R.R. Tolkien – Read it once, found it utterly boring, sold the books. Remembered it fondly years later. Bought the books, found them utterly boring, sold them again. The rambling narrative: not attractive to me.

2. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, by Douglas Adams - I read all of these during my school years and revisit them semi-regularly just for kicks. (Don't get me started on the movies, though.) Did you know there's an audio book version narrated by Martin Freeman? I highly recommend them; he does voices and accents brilliantly.

3. Ender's Game, by Orson Scott Card - Loved and still love the first book. Liked the first sequel. Boggled at the second sequel. Never even touched anything that came after.

4. The Dune Chronicles, by Frank Herbert - I read the first two books, I think, but lost interest after that.

5. A Song of Ice and Fire Series, by George R. R. Martin - This has always seemed too bleak to be relevant to my interests, and after trying (and failing) to get into the TV series, I cheerfully wash my hands of this one.

6. 1984, by George Orwell

7. Fahrenheit 451, by Ray Bradbury

8. The Foundation Trilogy, by Isaac Asimov – You know, the one tricky thing about this list is that a lot of the science-fiction titles on it, I read growing up. Hence, they were in German. I've read two books by Asimov, one of which was a short story collection, but I couldn't tell you what they were if my life depended on it.

9. Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley - One of the first science-fiction books I got from the school library rather than my dad's bookshelves. I believe this influenced my choice of books to pick from the library after that like few others, possibly apart from Diana Wynne Jones's Fire and Hemlock.

10. American Gods, by Neil Gaiman - I probably wouldn't love this so much if the audio book didn't have such a fine narrator. On the other hand, it's old mythology in the modern world, so maybe I would have adored it anyway.

11. The Princess Bride, by William Goldman - So much love. So impossible to translate well – do you know, I saw the film in German dub ages ago and found it unbearable, but when [livejournal.com profile] temaris sent me the proper English version it was too damn funny. I had to convince my sister to give it a shot (what with her having seen snippets of the German version as well), and she agreed it was a true mystery.

12. The Wheel Of Time Series, by Robert Jordan - Started it, hated it, put it away.

13. Animal Farm, by George Orwell

14. Neuromancer, by William Gibson - The funny thing about people calling a book a classic is that I always feel guilty for not having read – or, indeed, not wanting to read – it. Still, I have no intention of reading this, and no one can make me.

15. Watchmen, by Alan Moore - One day.

16. I, Robot, by Isaac Asimov

17. Stranger In A Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein

18. The Kingkiller Chronicles, by Patrick Rothfuss - The prose and world-building are fantastic, but omg I can't stand Kvothe. The only thing that kept me from putting away The Name of the Wind was that, for all his arrogance, Kvothe's plots usually end with him falling on his jerky little face. I haven't dared buy The Wise Man's Fear yet because I'll probably facepalm my way through all that gorgeous world-building. Seriously, how much of an oblivious ass can a main character be? And the worst thing is, I'm reasonably sure the author thinks that Kvothe is edgy and cool. :/

19. Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut – I read Breakfast of Champions. Usually I'm all for weird and quirky (see also: my deep, lasting love for Hanif's A Case of Exploding Mangoes), but that book put me off Vonnegut, period.

20. Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley - Like Bram Stoker's Dracula, I read this too young to really get it. There are books better read in your late teens, or better yet, as an adult.

22. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?, by Philip K. Dick

23. The Handmaid's Tale, by Margaret Atwood - I read The Year of the Flood and, upon learning that Atwood's other tales aren't any happier, decided to give that author a pass. I don't much enjoy bleakness in my leisure reading.

24. The Dark Tower Series, by Stephen King - I've started reading this several times, but I usually stop with book… four, I think? Which one has all the back story with the bandits or raiders or whatever the hell they are?

25. 2001: A Space Odyssey, by Arthur C. Clarke

26. The Stand, by Stephen King - So. Much. Love. Despite the lull in the middle.

27. Snow Crash, by Neal Stephenson

28. The Martian Chronicles, by Ray Bradbury – Like Asimov, I know I've read titles by Bradbury. I just couldn't tell you which ones.

29. Cat's Cradle, by Kurt Vonnegut

30. The Sandman Series, by Neil Gaiman - Again, one day. *sighs*

31. A Clockwork Orange, by Anthony Burgess

32. Watership Down, by Richard Adams - I hate this book.

32. Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein

33. Dragonflight, by Anne McCaffrey - One day, when I was, oh, fifteen at most, my dad came home from a business trip with a whole stack of books for me, just because. He'd passed some time at a flea market and found them cheap, 2 DM each, and thought I might like them. The stack contained almost the entire Pern series as well as The Dinosaur Planet, and while I don't love every book about the Dragonriders, I'll always have a high regard for the series as a whole because it's the centre of my fondest memory of my dad. (/TMI)

34. The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, by Robert Heinlein – Seriously, why so much Heinlein? Looking at this list, you'd think the genre of science-fiction had no recommended reading beyond the Big Three. Look, the fantasy on here isn't all about sorcerers, knights and dragons. Why does most of the science-fiction have to be about robots and spaceships?

35. A Canticle for Leibowitz, by Walter M. Miller

36. The Time Machine, by H.G. Wells - Don't you just love how weird that one is?

37. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne - Ah, Jules Verne. Staple of our school's library. ♥

38. Flowers for Algernon, by Daniel Keys - Without a doubt the most fucking depressing book I've ever read.

39. The War of the Worlds, by H.G. Wells

40. The Chronicles of Amber, by Roger Zelazny

41. The Belgariad, by David Eddings - You can say what you want about linear plots and whatnot (and authorial arrogance, gah), but David Eddings knows how to make characters quirky in just the right way to make me love them.

42. The Mists of Avalon, by Marion Zimmer Bradley - I think one day, MZB just sat down and thought to herself, how about writing a book where not a single person gets even a bit of happiness? And then she made it even meaner. I liked the prequel, though.

43. The Mistborn Series, by Brandon Sanderson

44. Ringworld, by Larry Niven – Started this, never finished. Considering how much I used to love Perry Rhodan, hard science-fiction isn't really my genre.

45. The Left Hand of Darkness, by Ursula K. LeGuin

46. The Silmarillion, by J.R.R. Tolkien – This would probably bore me to tears.

47. The Once and Future King, by T.H. White

48. Neverwhere, by Neil Gaiman - So full of good ideas, but it's obvious that Gaiman hadn't quite found his writing style just yet. Entertaining, but not his best work.

49. Childhood's End, by Arthur C. Clarke

50. Contact, by Carl Sagan

51. The Hyperion Cantos, by Dan Simmons

52. Stardust, by Neil Gaiman – Without trying to spoil anything: I loved the ending of the book much more than that of the film. It felt way more fitting.

53. Cryptonomicon, by Neal Stephenson

54. World War Z, by Max Brooks

55. The Last Unicorn, by Peter S. Beagle - If only because I like the film so much.

56. The Forever War, by Joe Haldeman

57. Small Gods, by Terry Pratchett – This is the one that stumps me the most. Why this book in particular? It's not the best Discworld novel by a long shot. For that matter, why not list the Discworld, period, and be done with it like all the other series?

58. The Chronicles Of Thomas Covenant, The Unbeliever, by Stephen R. Donaldson

59. The Vorkosigan Saga, by Lois McMaster Bujold

60. Going Postal, by Terry Pratchett – See above. Going Postal is entertaining, yes, but hardly representative of the Discworld series.

61. The Mote in God's Eye, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle

62. The Sword of Truth, by Terry Goodkind – The soap-operatic, OTT plot and weirdly-done D/s undertones were fun for the first two books, but things just got worse and worse. I mean, my brother-in-law gave up after book six, and he will read all kinds of crap. (Christoph, if you read this, I mean that in the best possible way. ♥)

63. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy

64. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke

65. I Am Legend, by Richard Matheson

66. The Riftwar Saga, by Raymond E. Feist

67. The Shannara Trilogy, by Terry Brooks

68. The Conan the Barbarian Series, by R.E. Howard - I read one book. No, [livejournal.com profile] houseinrlyeh, I won't read another one. ;p

69. The Farseer Trilogy, by Robin Hobb

70. The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger

71. The Way of Kings, by Brandon Sanderson

72. A Journey to the Center of the Earth, by Jules Verne

73. The Legend of Drizzt Series, by R.A. Salvatore

74. Old Man's War, by John Scalzi - Started it, got stuck. Will probably finish at some time.

75. The Diamond Age, by Neil Stephenson

76. Rendezvous With Rama, by Arthur C. Clarke

77. The Kushiel's Legacy Series, by Jacqueline Care - Kushiel's Dart is collecting dust on my bookshelf. You know that thing where [profile] houseinrlyeh keeps giving me books he deems unreadable drivel? This is one of them. I haven't dared try to read it yet.

78. The Dispossessed, by Ursula K. LeGuin

79. Something Wicked This Way Comes, by Ray Bradbury

80. Wicked, by Gregory Maguire – Can I just say that the progression from #79 to #80 made me laugh?

81. The Malazan Book of the Fallen Series, by Steven Erikson - See above re: bleakness and my leisure reading.

82. The Eyre Affair, by Jasper Fforde - For obvious reasons if you're into fanfic, I've decided that Jasper Fforde is an ass and deserves neither my time nor my money.

83. The Culture Series, by Iain M. Banks

84. The Crystal Cave, by Mary Stewart - Loved the first book. Sort-of-not-really liked the sequel. I can't say I loathed the sequel, because that dubious honour is reserved for the third book. Whaaaaaaat.

85. Anathem, by Neal Stephenson

86. The Codex Alera Series, by Jim Butcher - How someone who writes one series so brilliantly can so utterly fail at another one is a mystery to me. I've read the entire Codex Alera, and I still couldn't tell you why. It's not good. It's not entirely bad, either, but it simply isn't good.

87. The Book of the New Sun, by Gene Wolfe

88. The Thrawn Trilogy, by Timothy Zahn

89. The Outlander Series, by Diana Gabaldon

90. The Elric Saga, by Michael Moorcock - Back in the day, if you were in my class at school and affiliated with a certain group of people, you had to read this. Had to. It was that or get constantly kicked under the table, and who wants that?

91. The Illustrated Man, by Ray Bradbury – see above re: short stories by Ray Bradbury

92. Sunshine, by Robin McKinley

93. A Fire Upon the Deep, by Vernor Vinge

94. The Caves of Steel, by Isaac Asimov

95. The Mars Trilogy, by Kim Stanley Robinson

96. Lucifer's Hammer, by Larry Niven & Jerry Pournelle

97. Doomsday Book, by Connie Willis

98. Perdido Street Station, by China Mieville - Started King Rat, hated it, have found assorted writing samples on the net to be unbearably pretentious, have no intention on reading anything else by this author ever.

99. The Xanth Series, by Piers Anthony - Oh, did I love this. Looking back, I don't think I fully got it, but I loved it and I have half of it still.

100. The Space Trilogy, by C.S. Lewis

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January 2013

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