Saturday, August 25, 2007

[The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind] Must Reads!

Hey! I found a list on the internets of the Top Ten Must Reads in Literature.

Yeah. I know. A list on the internet! What'll they think of next?

Anyway, I don't know if I agree entirely with the list. However, I do agree that all of the books on that list are definitely in the must read category (Joyce was a surprise since I can't think of the last last time I saw James Joyce on any list that wasn't a syllabus).

Now, my personal list off the top of my pointy little head is as follows:
  1. Harvey & Eck -Erin O'Brien (It's at the top of my must read list because I've not read it, and I really, really must.)
  2. The Odyssey -Homer
  3. On the Road -Kerouak
  4. The Lord of the Rings -Tolkien
  5. Farenheit 451 -Bradbury (It's really a toss up with Dandelion Wine)
  6. The Metamorphosis -Kafka
  7. The Sound and the Fury -Falkner
  8. One Hundred Years of Solitude -Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  9. Walden: Or a Life in the Woods -Thoreau
  10. Moby Dick -Melville
That's just a quick and dirty list from me. I'm willing to bet that list will change in about an hour. And, that's the way these "must read" lists work. I think all books have a must read quality to them in one form or another, and at the time of putting this one together --with the exclusion of O'Brien's novel-- these are just a few books I've read that have in one way or another furthered my own understanding of both myself and the world around me.

Furthermore, I don't think anyone will ever come up with a tangible, solid, and widely accepted definition as to what "literature" is. To me, it's always been used as nothing more than a way to elevate a novel to the point where it can be discussed with a certain air of pretension and a sense of accomplishment. And, that's something that's always annoyed me. After all, all books should just be read. And their affect upon a person should be solely individual, and it shouldn't be swayed by popular opinion.

In other words, read whatever you damn well please, people!

Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 8/25/2007 10:25:00 AM


  1. I agree with your list, and also with your comment about what literature really is.  With that in mind, I'd add to that list, 'A Confederacy of Dunces,' and 'The World According to Garp' ... which never fails to make me laugh AND cry, no matter how many times I've read it.  And maybe 'Love in The Time of Cholera,' which always reminds me that some things are worth waiting for.   xx   Tina

  2. Dan, I don't know what to say, so I'll just say thank you.

    Thank you so, so, much.

    : )



  3. Hi !!!!!!! You might want to know that I went to the Erin O'Brien link and I enjoyed visiting. Thanks for sharing the link. I will have to add it to my journal page. Thanks again. Take care.

  4. I would have thought you would have had Aldous Huxley Brave New worlds on that list Dan.

  5. I think, "You Suck"  is a must read, it's a vampire love story :)  I loved it!  I lol twice.  Sorry, can't remember the name of the author.  I will try out some on your list!