BBC – The Big Read

The Big Read was a survey on books carried out by the BBC in the United Kingdom in 2003, where over three quarters of a million votes were received from the British public to find the nation’s best-loved novel of all time. The year-long survey was the biggest single test of public reading taste to date,and culminated with several programmes hosted by celebrities, advocating their favorite books.

If my maths worked correctly (rarely does) I have read 59/100 61/100 books from this list & reviewed only few… What about you? Which ones do you think I should read next? Are there books here you think I should skip ?

1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen (currently reading) read in 2016

2. The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien

3. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte

4. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling

5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

6. The Bible

7. Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte

8. Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell

9. His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman

10. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens

11. Little Women – Louisa M Alcott

12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy

13. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller read in 2016

14. Complete Works of Shakespeare

15. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier

16. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien

17. Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk

18. Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger

19. The Time Traveler’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger

20. Middlemarch – George Eliot

21. Gone with the Wind – Margaret Mitchell

22. The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald read: 15.06.2016.

24. War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy

25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams

27. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky

28. Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck

29. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Caroll

30. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame

31. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy

32. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens

33. Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis

34. Emma -Jane Austen

35. Persuasion – Jane Austen

36. The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe – CS Lewis

37. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini

38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres

39. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden

40. Winnie the Pooh – A.A. Milne

41. Animal Farm – George Orwell

42. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown

43. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving

45. The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins

46. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery (not sure)

47. Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy

48. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

49. Lord of the Flies – William Golding

50. Atonement – Ian McEwan

51. Life of Pi – Yann Martel

52. Dune – Frank Herbert

53. Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons

54. Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen

55. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth

56. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon

57. A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens

58. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley

59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon

60. Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez

61. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck , read in August 2016

62. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov

63. The Secret History – Donna Tartt

64. The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold

65. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas

66. On the Road – Jack Kerouac

67. Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy

68. Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding

69. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie

70. Moby Dick – Herman Melville (not sure)

71. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens

72. Dracula – Bram Stoker

73. The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett

74. Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson

75. Ulysses – James Joyce

76. The Inferno – Dante

77. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome

78. Germinal – Emile Zola

79. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray

80. Possession – AS Byatt

81. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens

82. Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell

83. The Color Purple – Alice Walker

84. The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro

85. Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert

86. A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry

87. Charlotte’s Web – E.B. White

88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom

89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

90. The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton

91. Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad (not sure)

92. The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery

93. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks (not sure)

94. Watership Down – Richard Adams

95. A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole

96. A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute

97. The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas

98. Hamlet – William Shakespeare

99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory – Roald Dahl

100. Les Miserables – Victor Hugo

21 thoughts on “BBC – The Big Read

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      1. Is that because you’ve seen it dramatised on TV. Many people are put off reading; they think the books “slow”. But I think you have to read Austen’s novels twice to appreciate them.

        1. I haven’t seen any Austen tv or movie adaptations. I’m at chapter 8 of Pride and Prejudice…and it does somehow feel very slow. But I’m quite sure I will love it once I manage to read it :)

  1. Jane Eyer, The Great Gasby (although I didn’t love it), Catch 22, and the Lovely Bones are definitely all worth reading. That’s a good list!

    1. That’s interesting, haha what didn’t you like about Great Gatsby? 🙈 I’m curious to hear because sometimes you don’t see that bad (or the good) side of some book.

  2. Oh man… I’ve only read a little over 10 of these. I’m not a huge fan of the classics though and other books you generally read in school I somehow didn’t have to.
    I’ll definitely have to put more on my list though!

    1. I hated reading books for school…which is why most of the Finnish classics are kind of unknown to me 🙈
      Over analyzing them kills all the joy you might have had if you didn’t read them because of some course.

      Classics are very often overrated :) I think one should read what one loves. In my case that would be fantasy, scifi and ya, but I guess I was very bored when I was younger so I managed to read some of these. If you haven’t read His Dark Materials, I would really recommend that one for you.

      1. I agree with you! Reading for school took the joy out of reading for me.
        I have read His Dark Materials and I absolutely loved it… probably time for a re-read soon! I’m also very into fantasy & sci-fi so, I probably won’t read much more on this list unless I push myself haha.

        1. Not sure what’s the point in making poor kids read something like Inferno by Dante 😂 Glad you loved it! Should re-read it soon myself… Well haha some say it’s good to get out of your comfort zone (I guess yes if you have the time).

  3. Great list, to which I also occasionally refer to. I read quite few novels these days as my interests lie elsewhere, however some of these classics carry around so much story even outside the book that it would be good to cross off one from this list every once in a while. For this summer for me it would be definitely Les Miserables by Victor Hugo.

    1. It is, I think it’s very important to read what you like, yet it’s just as important to read everything. All genres,both fiction & nonfiction because if you don’t, you’re stuck in something specific and I think it limits your thinking. Haha luckily a lifetime is a long time so 100 books from this list is do-able.

      I’m in love with Les Misérables and the way Hugo writes his book. Hope you like it!

  4. Wow, you’ve read a lot more of these than I have. I’ll have to work on catching up. ;) I would recommend the Kenneth Grahame though. It’s old fashioned, but a good story. :)

    1. Thank you for the recommendation! I think I have read/watched Grahame’s Reluctant Dragon but I’m not sure about Wind in the Willows. I’m sure I will love it :)

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