Wednesday, October 18, 2006

ROUND-UP: Books to Read Before You Die

A few days ago, I started posting a list of public domain titles based on Peter Boxall's book 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die. This book presented a list of essential titles in veery time period up to the present day, and has been reprinted minus the commentary elsewhere on the net. My version of the list is dramatically shorter than the original 1001 entries, for reasons I blogged about earlier, related to availability of the works in question. But what is out there remains an impressive collection of titles. In total, my version of Boxall's list contains 234 entries, broken down as follows:
Of the works listed, I have read slightly less than half of them. Several, I added to my "to read" list after glancing through them during the compilation of the list. The only authors on the list whose works I have read in their entirety are Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and the Bronte sisters (Wuthering Heights is my sentimental first classic, and one of my all-time favourite books).

I don't agree with all of Boxall's choices (especially some of the more recent titles, where there is less established canon and it becomes more subjective) but I had fun reviewing his choices and discovering new titles. I hope you enjoy exploring some of the works on this list.

I have a lot more to post on e-books. It is an area of the blog I want to do more writing on. I want to post some reading guides (some are on my website if you're not sure what I mean; there are certain authors whom it really pays to read in a certain order) and I want to post some of the reading lists from college courses in literature which I have taken (or which are available on-line). And we haven't gone near poetry, which is a serious oversight on my part. I am a poery classicist; I like the rhyming stuff, and there is little that interests me post Victorian era, so all of my favourites are freely available on-line. So much to read, so little time!

I'll be back tomorrow with some more music stuff. In the meanwhile, feel free to bookmark this post for the complete index to the "Books You Must Read Before You Die" posts.


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