The Great American Read. Do You Agree With The Results?

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by hekawi, Nov 3, 2018.

  1. hekawi

    hekawi Poster Extraordinaire

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    Recently PBS aired a series on America's 100 favorite novels as voted on by viewers. Here are the results. I'll put my comments beside the titles, and let you weigh in on your thoughts:

    1. To Kill a Mockingbird - OK, I'll buy that. Not my #1, but a worthy choice

    2. Outlander (Series) - Never Heard of it. (subsequent similar entries noted with NHOI)

    3. Harry Potter (Series) - Higher than expected, My kids were big fans.

    4. Pride and Prejudice - Never read it, but probably earned it's reputation as a classic

    5. Lord of the Rings - Yep. Fantastic.

    6. Gone with the Wind - Enjoyable Civil War soap opera

    7. Charlotte's Web - One of the best "children's books" ever. Terrific.

    8. Little Women - (see #4)

    9. Chronicles of Narnia - Great, but top 10? I dunno about that.

    10. Jane Eyre - (see #4 and #8)

    11. Anne of Green Gables - (see 4,8,10)

    12. Grapes of Wrath - Would have ranked this one higher.

    13. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn - Good book but would rank it lower

    14. Book Thief - Haven't read it but looks interesting. May check it out.

    15. Great Gatsby - Nope, sorry. Just don't like it.

    16. The Help - Read it, didn't enjoy it.

    17. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer - My favorite Twain novel, but maybe Huck deserves the spot.

    18. 1984 - I might put this one a bit higher

    19. And Then There Were None - NHOI

    20. Atlas Shrugged - a weighty tome. Surprised by the top 20 ranking

    21. Wuthering Heights - Eerie classic. (inspired Kate Bush song)

    22. Lonesome Dove - wonder if TV helped this one

    23. Pillars of the Earth - sorry, I tried. Just couldn't trudge through it.

    24. Stand - One of my favorites from King

    25. Rebecca - Excellent.

    26. A Prayer for Owen Meany - Oh yeah. I'd rank this one much higher

    27. Color Purple - Read it. The movie was better.

    28. Alice in Wonderland - Children's classic, but there's stuff for grown ups to get too.

    29. Great Expectations - Hmmm. Expected Dickens to make the top 20.

    30. Catcher in the Rye - A life changer.

    31. Where the Red Fern Grows - OK, sure.

    32. Outsiders - (see 31)

    33. The Da Vinci Code - I enjoyed it. The book is way better than the movie.

    34. The Handmaid's Tale - Nah.

    35. Dune - Should re-read it. Been a long time.

    36. The Little Prince - Children's classic

    37. Call of the Wild - Excellent

    38. The Clan of the Cave Bear - Haven't read it, maybe I should

    39. The Hitchhiker's Guide to The Galaxy - Absolutely

    40. The Hunger Games - My daughter loved it

    41. The Count of Monte Cristo - Good stuff

    42. The Joy Luck Club - None for me thanks.

    43. Frankenstein - A very interesting read. Don't expect the movie.

    44. The Giver - NHOI

    45. Memoirs of a Geisha - (see 42)

    46. Moby Dick - Another life changer. Not for the casual reader.

    47. Catch 22 - Very enjoyable

    48. Game of Thrones (series) - I'm sure TV helped this one get on the board

    49. Foundation (series) - good

    50. War and Peace - I really should try to get through this one

    51. Their Eyes Were Watching God - NHOI

    52. Jurassic Park - I'm a big fan of Crichton. Would put others by him instead

    53. The Godfather - Modern classic

    54. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Haven't read it

    55. The Picture of Dorian Gray - This one ages well

    56. The Notebook - Sappy.

    57. The Shack - Though provoking

    58. A Confederacy of Dunces - Haven't read it, maybe I should (HRIMIS)

    59. The Hunt for Red October - Intense

    60. Beloved - (see 42,45)

    61. The Martian - Really, really liked this one. Need to see the movie

    62. The Wheel of Time (series) - HRIMIS

    63. Siddhartha - HRIMIS

    64. Crime and Punishment - classic

    65. The Sun Also Rises - another classic

    66. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime - Nope. Odd little book

    67. A Separate Peace - HRIMIS

    68. Don Quixote - sure.

    69. The Lovely Bones - (see 42,45,60)

    70. The Alchemist - Read it, wasn't that impressed

    71. Hatchet (series) - (see 42,45,60,69)

    72. Invisible Man - Good.

    73. The Twilight Saga (series) - My daughter liked it

    74. Tales of the City (series) - NHOI

    75. Gulliver's Travels - Deeper than you might think

    76. Ready Player One - haven't read it

    77. Left Behind (series) - No thanks

    78. Gone Girl - (see 77)

    79. Watchers - NHOI

    80. The Pilgrim's Progress - HRIMIS

    81. Alex Cross Mysteries (series) - NHOI

    82. Things Fall Apart - NHOI

    83. Heart of Darkness - Remember enjoying it, but that was years ago

    84. Gilead - NHOI

    85. Flowers in the Attic - (see 77,78)

    86. Fifty Shades of Grey - You're kidding, right?

    87. The Sirens of Titan - I'd put lots of other Vonnegut ahead of this one.

    88. This Present Darkness - Never heard of the rest of these 88-100

    89. Americanah

    90. Another Country

    91. Bless Me, Ultima

    92. Looking for Alaska

    93. The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

    94. Swan Song

    95. Mind Invaders

    96. White Teeth

    97. Ghost

    98. The Coldest Winter Ever

    99. The Intuitionist

    100. Doña Bárbára
     
  2. H. Mac

    H. Mac Friend of Leo's

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    A pretty good list, although I agree with Hekawi that “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” would have been a more deserving choice than “The Adventures of Tom Sawyer” for spot 17.
     
  3. rodger

    rodger Tele-Meister

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    Interesting list. Couple of comments:

    Lonesome Dove - fantastic book. One of the few I hated to get to the end. Movie was good, too, but the book certainly stands on it's own.

    Gone Girl - great book. I loved it.

    And Then There Were None - also called Ten Little Indians. Agatha Christie. One of the best murder mysteries ever.
     
  4. claes

    claes Tele-Holic

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    I suspected quite soon that there was a womans touch on that list "pride and prejudice" at no 4.....confirmed with 50 shades of gray (lol).
    Everything is subjective (not really) but one thing I can say is that we can't evaluate the culture in our own time in an historic perspective. Harry Potter???
    Who ever made that list also seem's to have a problem with drawing a line between novels and films. It's easy to see that some films has rendered the novels a spot on this list.
     
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  5. Boubou

    Boubou Doctor of Teleocity Gold Supporter

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    Read 12 of those.
    Started reading War and Peace as well as Pillars of the Earth, didn’t make it too far, I don’t see how a book could be made more boring.
    Oh yeah I started reading 50 shades, totally a chick book with soft porn, gave it up quickly. So many good books are missing. I would add Nelson Demille’s Lion’s game book and the follow ups.
    And more and more....
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2018
  6. raito

    raito Poster Extraordinaire

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    These days 'greatest' is a synonym for 'most popular'. I've read most of them.
     
  7. dkmw

    dkmw Friend of Leo's

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    At least Vonnegut made the list. But nothing from The Good Doctor?? Pffffft....

    Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (or On the Campaign Trail) stomp many of those listings flat...
     
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  8. bettyseldest

    bettyseldest Friend of Leo's

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    A number that I have read and enjoyed, but of the authors I have read a lot of there is only one Orwell (1984), no Aldous Huxley, Gore Vidal, Primo Levi, Evelyn Waugh, Bernice Rubens, Hans Fallada. And what about Tolstoy, Kafka and Solzhenitsyn? Is this because I'm not American?
     
  9. W.L.Weller

    W.L.Weller Tele-Holic

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    You should read A Confederacy of Dunces. I'll be surprised if you finish it and think "That was a waste of my time, I wish I'd watched TV instead."

    I think the "As selected by viewers" part is responsible for things like "Clan of the Cave Bear" making the list.
     
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  10. notmyusualuserid

    notmyusualuserid Friend of Leo's

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    I'm amazed that an historical novel by an author better known for writing thrillers made the list.

    Has it been the subject of a TV miniseries?
     
  11. Pointmonger

    Pointmonger Tele-Afflicted

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    Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail is HST's best work. Great read.
     
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  12. notmyusualuserid

    notmyusualuserid Friend of Leo's

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    War and Peace is on the list...
     
  13. blowtorch

    blowtorch Telefied Ad Free Member

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    A lot of stuff on that list that I've not read and have no desire to read.
    I personally feel The Hobbit stands up better than Lord of the Rings, and that both Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn deserve a spot.
    I would not have picked The Stand. The Shining is far superior, to me
     
    Last edited: Nov 3, 2018
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  14. backporchmusic

    backporchmusic Friend of Leo's

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    The list is either:
    A. Books you were required to read in high school
    B. Literature lite from the bestseller list

    But I've read a bunch of them, and would have ranked them differently. Moby Dick would be tops.
     
  15. Bones

    Bones Telefied Ad Free Member

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    Have only read 3 on the list.

    Charlotte's Web

    Moby Dick

    Sirens of Titan
     
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  16. jackinjax

    jackinjax Friend of Leo's

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    I've read maybe thirty on the list. Some good suggestions for future reading. Surprised they didn't include any of Cormac McCarthy's work, and where's Philip Pullman, C. S. Forester, and Patrick O'Brian?
    I read all the Game of Thrones books back when I was in my sci-fi, fantasy stage. Good books, but, not what I would classify as "great reads". Couldn't get through even an episode of the ridiculous television series.
     
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  17. uriah1

    uriah1 Telefied Gold Supporter

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    Missing Hemingway and Studs Terkel
     
  18. drf64

    drf64 Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm surprised Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance isn't on there.
     
  19. w3stie

    w3stie Poster Extraordinaire

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    I would have expected No Country for Old Men to be higher than the daVinci code :(
     
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  20. Manual Slim

    Manual Slim Tele-Afflicted

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    “Favorite” says nothing about quality.
     
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