The Library 100

Here is a list of the top 100 novels of all time found in libraries around the world as compiled by the Online Computer Library Center.


How many have you read? Click here to find out!


Don Quixote, Miguel de Cervantes
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain
Treasure Island , Robert Louis Stevenson
Pride and Prejudice , Jane Austen
Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Moby Dick, Herman Melville
The Scarlet Letter, Nathaniel Hawthorne
Gulliver’s Travels, Jonathan Swift
The Pilgrim’s Progress, John Bunyan
A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
The Hobbit, or, There and Back Again, J.R.R. Tolkien
Frankenstein, or, the Modern Prometheus, Mary Shelley
Oliver Twist , Charles Dickens
Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe
Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Madame Bovary: Patterns of Provincial Life, Gustave Flaubert
The Return of the King, J.R.R. Tolkien
Dracula, Bram Stoker
The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas
Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
The Wizard of Oz, L. Frank Baum
Les Misérables, Victor Hugo
The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
Animal Farm, George Orwell
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Little Prince, Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
The Call of the Wild, Jack London
20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, Jules Verne
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen
The Last of the Mohicans, James Fenimore Cooper
Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, J.K. Rowling
Heidi, Johanna Spyri
Ulysses, James Joyce
The Complete Sherlock Holmes, Arthur Conan Doyle
The Count of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo
Pinocchio, Carlo Collodi
Ivanhoe, Walter Scott
The Red Badge of Courage, Stephen Crane
Anne of Green Gables, L.M. Montgomery
Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie
A Farewell to Arms, Ernest Hemingway
The House of the Seven Gables, Nathaniel Hawthorne
Lord of the Flies, William Golding
The Prince and the Pauper, Mark Twain
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, James Joyce
Lord Jim, Joseph Conrad
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, J.K. Rowling
The Red & the Black, Stendhal
The Stranger, Albert Camus
The Trial, Franz Kafka
Lady Chatterley’s Lover, D.H. Lawrence
Kidnapped: The Adventures of David Balfour, Robert Louis Stevenson
The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
Fahrenheit 451, Ray Bradbury
A Journey to the Center of the Earth, Jules Verne
Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque
Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
My Ántonia, Willa Cather
Of Mice and Men, John Steinbeck
The Vicar of Wakefield, Oliver Goldsmith
A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court, Mark Twain
White Fang, Jack London
Fathers and Sons, Ivan Sergeevich Turgenev
Doctor Zhivago, Boris Leonidovich Pasternak
The Decameron, Giovanni Boccaccio
Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
The Jungle, Upton Sinclair
The Da Vinci Code, Dan Brown
Persuasion, Jane Austen
Mansfield Park, Jane Austen
Candide, Voltaire
For Whom the Bell Tolls, Ernest Hemingway
Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
The Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Return of the Native, Thomas Hardy
Sons and Lovers, D.H. Lawrence
Charlotte’s Web, E.B. White
The Swiss Family Robinson, Johann David Wyss
Bleak House, Charles Dickens
Père Goriot, Honoré de Balzac

Read More! Join me?

As you may have guessed, I’m a big fan of the Goodreads Reading Challenge. Last year, it helped me reads more than 50 books; see Goodreads: A Year in Books (2018).

This year, I’m hoping to get to even more of the books on my To Read list.

Join me? Visit Goodreads to sign up today!

(If you’re a Goodreads members, click here and we can follow each other’s progress!)

Goodreads: A Year in Books (2018)

Several years ago, actress Lena Dunham tweeted “Let’s be reasonable and add an eighth day to the week that is devoted exclusively to reading.” Would that it were possible, right?

Lacking an eighth day, we’re left to our own devices to make time for reading. For me, there are treasured Sunday mornings — pre-dawn, coffees at the ready, reading side-by-side with my boyfriend Matt. Then good habits, like carrying a book in my purse, weekly visits to the library, and reading before bed help keep the spirit alive through the work week right back around to those quite Sunday hours.

And all of that good reading mojo has paid off…for the first time in six years, I exceeded my personal Goodreads Reading Challenge goal, reading 54 books in 2018! This year’s tally of 15,121 pages included fiction bestsellers and some classics, one cookbook, poetry and nonfiction, along with a handful of self-published books by some amazing local authors.

Following closely in the footsteps of 2017, you’ll find several Young Adult novels on my list again, including Ransom Riggs’ new book in the Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series: A Map of Days. (“Fair warning: you’ll realize about 2/3 of the way in that you’re going to finish the book soon and you’ll have to wait – again – for the next in the series to magically appear! Pace yourself.”)

Another fun find this year was the Penguin Drop Cap Series, 26 collectible hardcover editions of classic works of literature, each featuring on its cover a specially commissioned illustrated letter of the alphabet by type designer Jessica Hische. This year I read H, Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse. My local library seems to have a good selection of these special titles, and it’s fun to try to spot them on the shelves. Click here to see all 26.

According to star ratings, some of my least favorite books in 2018 were Brida by Paulo Coelho (“insipid romance”) and The Book of Hidden Things by Francesco Dimitri (“Nope. Nope. Nope.”). I disliked 1984 by George Orwell so much — “a terribly wretched book” — it completely subverted my attempt to read the 100 books featured in The Great American Read.

Brida was not the only “insipid romance” that earned one or two stars. I was also not a fan of The Atomic Weight of Love (Elizabeth Church), An Obvious Enchantment (Tucker Malarkey), or An Itailan Wife (Ann Hood). Which is not to say I don’t like a good love story. I adored The Course of Love by Alain de Botton — “This should be required reading. For everyone. Period.”

New reads from some of my favorite authors included Keri Smith’s uber-clever book The Wander Society (“Solvitur ambulando!”), Anne Lamott’s Help Thanks Wow: The Three Essential Prayers (“A balm, antidote, inspiration…Wow! and Thanks!”), and Brené Brown’s Braving the Wilderness: The Quest for True Belonging and the Courage to Stand Alone (“We need this kind of thoughtful examination and heartfelt solutions now more than ever!”).

I recently recommended One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd (Jim Fergus) to a friend, and realized it was one of the most memorable books I read this year. (“we want this to be a true story…and are ever-surprised that it is not”)

Other books that stand out include Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy (“a clever piece of dystopian fiction”), Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffengger (“Wonderfully, weirdly delicious!”), and The Keeper of Lost Things by Ruth Hogan (“I savored it slowly… ”).

But if asked specifically, I would put at the top of my list The Bedlam Stacks by Natasha Pulley (“Magically, magically good!!”)

It was, apparently, a good year for reading. But I suspect I’ll run out of superlatives if I don’t stop here. You can read my complete list of 2018 books on Goodreads (click here)…but I want to know about you, too. What were your favorite books in 2018? List them in the commend section below!

HAPPY READING!


A “Best Fiction” List

BuzzFeed News has compiled a list of its favorite novels and short story collections, presented by Arianna Rebolini. Click here to read the full list with reviews.

Have you read any of these? Do you agree with the list?

1. Severance by Ling Ma
2. Freshwater by Akwaeke Emezi
3. Belly Up by Rita Bullwinkel
4. There There by Tommy Orange
5. Circe by Madeline Miller
6. Insurrecto by Gina Apostol
7. A Place For Us by Fatima Farheen Mirza
8. The Deeper the Water the Uglier the Fish by Katya Apekina
9. The Overstory by Richard Powers
10. The Incendiaries by R.O. Kwon
11. My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh
12. My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite
13. The House of Broken Angels by Luis Alberto Urrea
14. Confessions of the Fox by Jordy Rosenberg
15. The Wildlands by Abby Geni
16. An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
17. Friday Black by Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah
18. Kudos by Rachel Cusk
19. French Exit by Patrick DeWitt
20. Speak No Evil by Uzodinma Iweala
21. Mem by Bethany C. Morrow
22. She Would Be King by Wayétu Moore
23. The Pisces by Melissa Broder
24. The Friend by Sigrid Nunez
25. A Lucky Man by Jamel Brinkley
26. Milkman by Anna Burns
27. Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata
28. The Great Believers by Rebecca Makkai

BOOK REVIEW: A Map of Days

A Map of Days
by Ransom Riggs

Having defeated the monstrous threat that nearly destroyed the peculiar world, Jacob Portman is back where his story began, in Florida. Except now Miss Peregrine, Emma, and their peculiar friends are with him, and doing their best to blend in. But carefree days of beach visits and normalling lessons are soon interrupted by a discovery….Now, the stakes are higher than ever as Jacob and his friends are thrust into the untamed landscape of American peculiardom….New wonders, and dangers, await in this brilliant next chapter for Miss Peregrine’s peculiar children.


I savored the idea of this book from the moment I heard about it until I finally opened the Amazon box—and it was worth every anticipatory moment! This series of books sets me right down in my own loop—circa 1970s, when reading was pure, delicious childhood pleasure and the adventuring kids were The Boxcar Children, and Peter, Susan, Edmund, and Lucy in Narnia. I devoured the first three books and A MAP OF DAYS, too, which picks up seamlessly from the third and whoosh! whisks us right back into the lives of our favorite Peculiars. Despite a darkness that hits maybe a little too close to home sometimes (we live in dark days too, after all), I LOVED this book as much as the others, especially the new collection of oddball photos! Fair warning: you’ll realize about 2/3 of the way in that you’re going to finish the book soon and you’ll have to wait (again) for the next in the series to magically appear! Pace yourself.  — Jen Payne

Reading with Peaches

“One day I would have all the books in the world, shelves and shelves of them. I would live my life in a tower of books. I would read all day long and eat peaches. And if any young knights in armor dared to come calling on their white chargers and plead with me to let down my hair, I would pelt them with peach pits until they went home.” — Jacqueline Kelly, The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate


Woman Reading with Peaches, Henri Matisse