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.

Dorian Gray

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. 

Crime and Punishment

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.

Of Mice and Men

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.

The Catcher and the Rye

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.

Anna Karenina

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.

As I Lay Dying

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!  

The Pillars of the Earth

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.

On the Road

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.

Google tribute to Franz Kafka

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.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1

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

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About adrakontaidis

A conservative who doesn't pander to the GOP.

18 responses to “Top 10 Favorite Books”

  1. JF Owen says :

    An eclectic list, but I’m surprised that there’s no Dickens. Actually I’m impressed that your list isn’t all current best sellers. That’s a good thing.

    • realtalkrealdebate says :

      Thanks! I was worried people would think it wasn’t eclectic enough. I really like Great Expectations but I like these books a bit more. I also just thought about Night.

      I’ve always gravitated towards reading the classics. I haven’t read many of them and I’m sure years from now my list will change. These books however each have left an impression in me. I’ve never forgotten them.

    • realtalkrealdebate says :

      Thought I’d let you know I revised my list because I made an epic and dumb mistake. Instead of The Sound and the Fury I was really referring to As I Lay Dying. Not sure if I’m getting severely early onset Alzheimer’s or what. I’m sorry for the revision.

  2. naduni7 says :

    I lovelovelove Of Mice and Men as well as Harry Potter! I cried at the end of Of Mice and Men. 😦 Harry Potter completely defined my preteen and teenage years. I enjoy Faulkner as well, though my favorite is As I Lay Dying because it brings back some good memories. For myself, I would also add One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest. I bawled in public like a lunatic when I finished it.

    • naduni7 says :

      Also The Great Gatsby! I hated reading it for AP English in the beginning, but by the end I loved that damn book. As I’ve gotten older, I continue to appreciate it more and more.

    • realtalkrealdebate says :

      OMG I left As I Lay Dying off my list!!! I liked it a lot more!! Oh I’m so mad right now. It’s too late to alter it now. 😦

      • naduni7 says :

        Yay somebody else likes As I Lay Dying! When I mention it to people, I normally get blank looks. It’s totally under appreciated. As I Lay Dying was my first real introduction to multiple narrators and unreliable narrators. I remember reading it and thinking “wow that’s messed up” as I went along trying to piece everything together.

      • realtalkrealdebate says :

        THANK YOU so much for mentioning it. I HAVE NO IDEA what I was thinking. I wrote my synopsis based on As I Lay Dying but when I looked up a photo I typed in William Faulkner and Sound and the Fury popped. For whatever dumb reason I mistakenly inserted that photo. It’s my fault for not proofreading it once more.

        As I Lay Dying is my second favorite book. I read it in high school and thought like you it was messed up but I kept reading. I think it is brilliant and I have read it several times throughout the years.

      • naduni7 says :

        Happy to be of service! You’ve inspired me to read it again. 😀

    • realtalkrealdebate says :

      As I was referring to As I Lay Dying in my post but I for whatever reason completely messed up and put Sound and Fury. Ok I need to fix this list.

  3. mariampera says :

    I hate, hate, hate, Catcher in the Rye, and mostly because I loathe Holden Caulfield, and I completely blame Mrs. Thompson for that.

  4. mariampera says :

    The rest of this list is acceptable. Props for all the classics. Any chance you’ll ever read something written by a woman? 😛 Also, I notice a theme of spoiled rich people who are for some reason miserable.

    • realtalkrealdebate says :

      Whenever I’d go to the bookstore I always go to the classics section. That’s probably why the authors are male. Any suggestions?

      I never really thought of my theme lol

      What’s your top 10? I’m very curious to know.

  5. mummyflyingsolo says :

    Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand is my all time fav. I liked a lot of your choices and am well impressed with Anna K – I’ve heard it’s either a love it or hate it one!

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