Top 10 Favorite Books
This week I am sharing my favorite books. As always these lists I create every week progressively get more difficult. In the past weeks I have shared my favorite destinations, movies, TV shows, songs and last week I shared my favorite snacks. I hope you enjoy reading my list and I hope you share some of your favorite books.
1. The Picture of Dorian Gray (Oscar Wilde)
Wilde’s most famous novel tells the story of Dorian Gray; a handsome, young man who becomes so enamored and consumed by his looks that he sells his soul to remain young. In contrary, a portrait of Gray is the one that ages. The novel is a stellar example of Gothic fiction. I liked the recent movie adaptation as well.
2. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoevsky)
Dostoevsky’s masterpiece is about a Russian man who kills a pawnbroker and spends the remainder of the novel in a constant state of distress. This novel is perfect for those who seek psychologically pervasive novels.
3. Of Mice and Men (John Steinbeck)
Steinbeck’s classic is my third favorite book. The novel is set in California during the Great Depression (a favorite of Steinbeck’s). Two migrant workers, George Milton and Lennie Small are traveling to find work. They finally encounter a ranch and begin working there. The novel’s climax is both surprising and memorable.
4. The Catcher and the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
The controversial novel centers on the life of Holden Caulfield. It is told from Holden’s perspective. It is an interesting tale of a young protagonist’s life. The novel usually finds its way on the school banned list. Luckily Lane Tech is a more open-minded high school.
5. Anna Karenina (Leo Tolstoy)
The novel really is a saga to read. It took me two summers to finish reading it (I like to read several novels at the same time; my weird habit). Tolstoy, my favorite classic writer, shares the story of an unhappy married Russian aristocrat. Anna Karenina is a complicated and intriguing character. Tolstoy is one of the best writers of all-time and should be recognized as such. Entertainment Weekly named this as the best book of all-time.
6. As I Lay Dying (William Faulkner)
William Faulkner is my favorite American author. This is my second favorite book of all-time. The novel follows a Southern family and their mission to uphold the wishes of the deceased Addie Bundren. The game-changing novel is a must-read for all avid readers. This is one of the few novels that I have read several times. The book is written from many perspectives and in a “stream of consciousness” format. I greatly enjoyed the novel. UPDATE: For whatever reason in an earlier iteration of this post I mistakenly inserted another Faulkner great (The Sound and the Fury) as opposed to this novel. I really have no idea what I was thinking. It’s my fault because I was rushing to upload this today. Sorry for the mistake!
7. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
Another long book, another great novel. This is Follett’s best work. The Pillars of the Earth centers on the construction of a cathedral. The book is separated in parts and spans over five decades. This book has everything you could want in a novel: mystery, suspense, romance, action and much more.
8. On the Road (Jack Kerouac)
This is my favorite book that I read during my college years. The novel is based on a road trip Kerouac took with his friends. Only his second novel, it has since garnered critical acclaim. The novel takes place in the late 40’s and delves into Americana history and particularly in jazz history.
9. The Metamorphosis (Franz Kafka)
I read this my senior year of high school. The story is of a salesman who one day wakes to learn he has turned into a giant bug. It is one of the weirdest novels I have ever read. It is also one of the greatest. A common theme with my summaries is that I cannot do justice to these great works of literature. Just take me at my word.
10. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (J.K. Rowling)
This is my favorite novel. Now it may seem odd or even cliché that I would pick a modern novel about a boy wizard as my all-time favorite book but there is a reason I love this book and the series so much. Besides the wondrous and detailed universe Rowling creates in this series, the first book will always be my favorite. I read this book in sixth grade during the same time my father passed away. Every time I read it I was instantly transported to the wizarding world of Hogwarts. I read this book during the most difficult time of my life and it helped me more than anyone could. Besides my personal attachment to the novel and series, Rowling really does a fantastic job in creating this beautiful, adjacent world.
What do you think of my list?
Anything you want to add?
Twitter: @adrakontaidis & @talkrealdebate