Top 10 Books I Can’t Believe I Haven’t Read Yet

For those of us who love reading, the sheer number of amazing books out there can be really overwhelming. How can we possibly read them all? Obviously, we are limited to reading only a tiny fraction of the books in existence in our lifetimes — and probably only a small percentage of the books that could be considered classics. We have to be choosy about the books we read, and we inevitably miss out on some of the books it seems everyone else has read or that we feel we should read.

top ten tuesday

The folks at The Broke and The Bookish have declared this Top Ten Tuesday a freebie week, so with the above thoughts in mind, I have decided to list the top ten books I can’t believe I haven’t read yet!

1. Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte. This has been sitting on my shelf for two years, waiting for me to muster up the courage to read it. I’m just afraid I really won’t like it!

2. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte. This is one of those books that I feel like everyone else has read and that I should read, but I’m really not that interested in it. Should I be?

3. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck. I’m pretty sure every high school sophomore English class but mine read this classic. Someday I’ll get around to it!

4. The Things They Carried – Tim O’Brien. We read O’Brien’s If I Die in a Combat Zone in high school English, but I haven’t read this collection of short stories yet. I very much want to, though!

5. I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings – Maya Angelou. This seems to be a reading staple, but it hasn’t quite made it to the top of my to-read list yet.

6. The Lord of the Rings series – JRR Tolkien … and honestly? I really have no desire to read them. I got about 100 pages into the first book and was bored out of my mind. Don’t hate me!

7. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini. I have no excuse for not having read this yet. It’s been waiting on my shelf for months. I swear I’ll read it soon!

8. I’m going to lump Don Quixote (Miguel de Cervantes) and Le Petit Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery) into one. I’m pretty sure both of these books are read and loved by EVERY PERSON who studies Spanish or French, respectively. Because my silly high-school self took Latin (really, what was I thinking?), I have read neither of them. But maybe I should?!

9. Anything by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. I swear, he’s next on my list of authors to read!

10. Anything by Toni Morrison. Sula is waiting patiently on my shelf, but I’m too intimidated to pick it up!

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15 thoughts on “Top 10 Books I Can’t Believe I Haven’t Read Yet

  1. I felt the same about Jane Eyre, but it really is a great read 🙂

    I read number 5 ages ago but haven’t felt a need to read it again. Kite Runner is a must, really great story.

    I got about two chapters into the Hobbit and put it down and have never felt the need to see the movies :p

    • Haha Jane Eyre seems to be one of those books that people aren’t terribly interested in until they read it… and then they love it.
      I’m thinking LOTR just isn’t for everyone 😛

  2. Sula is definitely not an intimidating book! We read it my senior year of high school and it was probably one of my favorite “books I have to read for school” books ever. Love Toni Morrison (though I still have yet to read her most famous novel- Beloved).

    • Thanks for the encouragement! I’ve read that Toni Morrison’s books are incredible but very difficult; I’m just afraid I won’t “get it.” It’s good to hear you read and liked it in high school 🙂

    • It’s just a little nerve-wracking to dive into the work of such a revered author! What if I don’t like it/get it?! Your encouragement is really helpful, though; I’ve psyched myself out a little, so it’s good to hear Sula shouldn’t be intimidating 🙂

      • Here’s the thing– yes, there is a lot of stuff in Toni Morrison that can be interpreted (bible references, metaphors, etc.), but you can also enjoy them at face value and they are STILL wonderful books. Trust me. I first read most of her books as a teenager and I loved them. When I re-read them a few months ago, I understood more of the metaphorical stuff and I got more of the bible/mythological references, but I loved them no less as a teenager. I think her books take more than one read to get everything, anyway, no matter at what age a person reads them.

        • Thanks so much for sharing your experience with her books, Heather. It’s actually kind of a relief to hear that her books need to be read more than once to get everything, that I can just relax and enjoy the story for now — I can always go back and get more of the deeper meanings later. Toni Morrison seems much more approachable now. Really, thank you.

  3. Wow I see some Spanish literature here! As a Spanish reader who does not like Spanish literature, I am weirdly in awe every time a non-Spanish reader is interested on our national production.

    I highly recommend you Jane Eyre, I don’t know what it has that makes it so special, but there is definitely something there.

    Wüthering Heights is different. I read it on cold, rainy evenings in December and it the book ended up blending with the weather outside, it was amazing. But I really don’t know if it would make a great summer reading.

    I haven’t read anything by Toni Morrison either… and I feel guilty!

    • I’ve never read any Spanish literature either, but I think it would be interesting to try! My reading is overwhelmingly US/UK, and I would love to expand my cultural horizons. What don’t you like about Spanish lit?
      I’ll keep that in mind for Wuthering Heights!
      You shouldn’t feel guilty! There are something like 130,000,000 books in the world; it’s silly to feel guilty about not having read a certain few of them (yet)!

      • I don’t like the style, generally speaking. I find it too adorned: Spanish uses too many words for my taste, but it is also a quality of the language, Spanish tends to uses too many words. I find it all too baroque. Also, in classical works there is a strong Catholic presence, too adorned too (vs. Protestant austerity).

        Don’t get me wrong, there are Spanish books published nowadays that are really good (crime, sci-fi) but foreign readers usually focus on classical works and they all fit the too-adorned description from above. I know that for an outsider, they may seem exotic, but not for me.

        I have some protestant and austere roots after all!

        • Interesting perspective. I haven’t read any Spanish lit yet, but I’m interested to see how the more-adorned language makes for a different reading experience.

          Protestant roots, yeah!

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