Books

Top Ten Tuesday – 19th May 2015

TTT

Top Ten Tuesday is brought to you by The Broke and the Bookish. This week is a Top Ten Tuesday Freebie which means that I get to choose my own topic. I’ve decided to go with something fairly simple and so I’m listing my Top Ten Favourite Ever Books. This list might say a lot more about me than I expected but it’ll be fun to see overlapping genres and eras.

So, here goes:

  1. 1984 by George Orwell – I first read this when I was 14 and I’ve read it many times since. I absolutely adore this book. I just love the whole concept of it. I also find it fascinating how much of it is actually true. CCTV takes on a new meaning after you’ve read 1984. I also love Orwell’s other novels but as this was the first novel I read by him it holds a special place in my heart.
  2. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov – I know a lot of people that despise this book but I love it. I first read it at 16 (I get a lot of odd looks from people when I tell them that) and I fell in love with Nabokov’s writing style. Lolita has a beautiful, poetic writing style and when combined with the subject matter it makes this book is a very disconcerting read. Nabokov plays mind games with you when you’re reading Lolita and you’ve really got to think about what you’re reading and who you believe. It’s a very clever novel and I love it.
  3. The Time Machine by H. G. Wells – I read this for the first time in September 2014 and fell in love with it. I love Wells’ The War of the Worlds too but I do prefer this one. I don’t even know why I love it so much, I just do.
  4. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde – I love Wilde’s plays and poetry but his novel is probably my favourite piece of writing by him. The Picture of Dorian Gray is so obviously a social critique, like Wilde’s other works, and I love the insight it gives you into the lives of the Victorian upper classes. Basil is probably my favourite character even though I hated him when I first read it when I was 17.
  5. Dracula by Bram Stoker – This book was probably the first vampire novel I ever read, after Twilight, and it made such an impression on my 15 year old self that I can’t leave it out of my Top Ten list. I also studied it at university and fell in love with it even more. I know this novel is extremely misogynistic but after writing an essay on the misogyny of Dracula I think I understand the context of said misogyny.
  6. The Outsider by Albert Camus – This is another book that I discovered during my BA. The Outsider is such an interesting book and I didn’t fully appreciate it when I first read it so I’ve recently read it again. I don’t even know how to explain my love for The Outsider. It’s an existentialist book (although Camus apparently hated that term) and I’d love to read it in it’s original French one day. The Outsider is also called The Stranger by some publishers because the original title is L’Étranger.
  7. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll – This is a book of my childhood and I still love it today. In fact, I probably love it more now because I can understand it better. I just love the nonsensical writing style and I love how fun it is to read.
  8. Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer – This doesn’t seem to fit with the rest of my top ten as it’s non-fiction but it deserves a place in the list. I adore this book. I truly do. It’s extremely emotional and I defineity cried whilst reading it. It’s also inspirational. When I read it I had the urge to drop everything and just live for once. Unfortunately I had a degree to finish (and an MA hopefully) so my plans of falling off the grid have been postponed. This book spoke to the explorer in me in a way that no fiction book has done before.
  9. I am Legend by Richard Matheson – This is another of my early vampire novels. I saw the film when I was young and didn’t really like it but I was given the book by a friend so I thought I’d read it. I am Legend is so much better than the film. It’s not your average vampire novel either.
  10. I Shall Wear Midnight by Terry Pratchett – My granddad gave me this book a few years before he died and it’s one of my most treasured memories of him. He was a huge Terry Pratchett fan (as I am now) and I Shall Wear Midnight holds a special place in my heart. (It’s also a very well written, very fun book.)

That’s all for this week! Any thoughts on my book choices?

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10 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday – 19th May 2015

  1. 1984, Lolita, and The picture of Dorian Gray were great! I am always hesitant on recommending Lolita (even though I want to) to people because of the subject matter. :/ nice list!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks! 🙂

      I always recommend Lolita and I think I’ve convinced about five people to read it so far. The subject matter scares a lot of people but it’s such a good book.

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      1. Exactly! Nabokov’s writing is amazing to the point where he made Humbert Humbert “likeable” when he shouldn’t be. I actually felt kind of bad of him, but then he was definitely an unreliable narrator in my opinion.

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      2. He’s definitely an unreliable narrator. You can’t trust a word he says and he even admits that during the story. But I felt sorry for him too and Nabokov’s writing is so clever because you actually start to sympathise with him rather than Lolita herself. I wish more people would read it.

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      3. When I was reading it, I felt so bad for him and I was almost rooting for him and Lolita (I know that’s really awful and rather disturbing) but like you mentioned Nabokov’s writing is too clever. He almost got me.haha If people looked past the whole pedophilia thing because I thought it was handled tastefully.

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      4. Nabokov made it obvious that he was condemning Humbert’s actions and I don’t think people realise that without reading it. I’m glad I’ve found someone else who likes the books as much as I do though!

        Liked by 1 person

      1. ah! It wasn’t the philosophy of it, but more of the writing. I blame it on the French-to-English translation, which might be a cop out, but I really do think things are lost in translation sometimes. I think the ideas behind it outweigh the actual writing, but I think that’s just the way I read certain books

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      2. I agree that some things are lost in translation. It’s such a shame too with interesting books like this. I think it’s the idea behind it that I love, like you said. (I do love the writing though but that’s just the literature student in me).

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