"There's only one hard and fast rule in running: sometimes you have to run one hard and fast."

Monday, November 30, 2009

The Shrinking Reading List

Carl Gammon once introduced me as someone who likes good books and bad movies. At last Saturday's run at Afton, John Storkamp asked if I'd read any good books lately and I told him I read Daniel Defoe's "Journal of the Plague Year" while sick with the flu (later, Bryan Erickson and I had a talk that involved "Shogun Assassin" and "Bullet in the Head," proving Carl right). Digging through a bunch of paper the next few days, I rediscovered my lifetime reading list, scratched out things I'd read and found that I'd gone from 5000 titles to 150.

That 5000 is misleading. Lots of duplications and lots of things that take only minutes to read, like individual poems. Still, given that I didn't really start reading until I was 30 (attention span problems), it's quite an accomplishment. I can finally type up the remaining list. It's heavy on Chinese, Sanskrit and Arabic works, as they've been harder to find.

Abelard, Pierre - Letters of Abelard and Heloise
Adams, Henry - Mont St. Michel and Chartres
Al-Hariri - The Assemblies
Anselm - The Major Works
Averroes (Ibn Rushd) - On the Harmony of Religion and Philosophy
Balzac, Honore de - Ursule Mirouet; The Wild Ass' Skin; A Harlot High and Low; The Black Sheep; Cesar Birotteau; The 13; Cousin Pas; The Chouans; Louis Lambert
Bede, The Venerable - Ecclesiastical History of the English People
Behn, Aphra - Love Letters
Bialik, Chaim Nachman - Selected Poems
Boiardo, Matteo Maria - Orlando Innamorata
Boswell, James - Journals
Broch, Hermann - The Death of Virgil
Brown, George - House With the Green Shutters
Browne, Thomas - Urn Burial; The Garden of Cyrus
Bunyan, John - Grace Abounding
Buonarroti, Michaelangelo - Complete Poems
Burney, Fanny - Evelina
Caesar, Julius - The Civil War
Camoes, Luis Vaz de - Lusiads
Capek, Karel - The War With the Newts
Carlyle, Thomas - Sartor Resartus
Carpentier, Alejo - The Lost Steps
Castiglione, Baldassare - Book of the Courtier
Chapman, George - Plays and Poems
Collins, Wilkie - The Law and the Lady
Collins, William - Poems
Comnena, Anna - Alexiad
Cooper, James Fennimore - The Pioneers; The Prairie
Conrad, Joseph - The Shadow Line; An Outcast of the Islands; Youth
Crabbe, George - Poetical Works
Crane, Stephen - Stories and Poems
Dewey, John - Experience and Education
Einstein, Albert - Ideas and Opinions
Ekelof, Gunnar - Guide to the Underworld
Eliot, George - Felix Holt, the Radical
Ellison, Ralph - Shadow and Act
Enzensberger, Hans Magnus - Poems
Eschenbach, Wolfram von - Paezival
Eyrbryggja Saga (Saga of Eirik the Red)
Fontane, Theodore - Effi Briest
Forster, E.M. - Aspects of the Novel
Frisch, Max - I'm Not Stiller
Fuentes, Carlos - Terra Nostra
Galdos, Benito Perez - Nazarin
Gaskell, Elizabeth - Ruth
Gibbon, Edmund - Autobiography (Memoirs of My Life)
Gissing, George - New Grub Street; Odd Women
Gorky, Maxim - Childhood Youth and Exile
Graves, Robert - Collected Poems
Hardy, Thomas - A Laodicean; The Well-Beloved
Hazlitt, William - Selected Writings
Herrick, Robert - Poems
Hofmannsthal, Hugo von - Selected Works
Holderlin, Friedrich - Selected Poems, Hymns and Fragments
Housman, A.E. - Collected Poems
Inchbald, Elizabeth - A Simple Story
Juvenal - Satires
Ibn Khaldun - The Prolegomena
Kipling, Rudyard - Plain Tales From the Hills;Puck of Pook's Hill; Complete Verse; Collected Stories
Kleist, Heinrich von - Writings
LaForgue, Jules - Selected Writings
Lawrence, D.H. - Complete Short Stories; Complete Poems; Studies in Classic American Literature
Leopardi, Giacomo - Poems
Lucan - Pharsalia
Machado, Antonio - Juan de Mairena
Mahasatipathana Sutta
Maturin, Charles - Melmoth the Wnderer
Mayakovsky, Vladimir - Poems
MacDiarmid, Hugh - Selected Poems
Marivaux, Pierre - Up From the Country
Mauriac, Francois - Therese
McCarthy, Cormac - Suttree
Meun, Juan de and Guillaume de Lorris - Romance of the Rose
Molina, Tirso - Rogue of Seville
Morris, William - News From Nowhere
Musil, Robert - Man Without Qualitites
Navarre, Marguerite of - Heptameron
Nerval - Chimera; Sylvie; Aurelia
Nietzsche, Friedrich - The Will to Power
O'Neill, Eugene - Anna Christie; Beyond the Horizon
Orkneyina Saga
Orwell, George - Collected Essays
Ostrovsky, Alexander - The Thunderstorm
Palin, Sarah - Going Rogue
Parkman, Francis - The Oregon Trail
Pasternak, Boris - Selected Poems
Pater, Walter - The Renaissance; Marius the Epicurean
Perse, St.-John - Poems
Pisan, Christine de - Book of the City of Ladies
Plautus - Comedies
Propertius - Poems
Queiroz, Jose Maria de Eca de - The Maias
Qian Sima (Ssu-ma Chien) - Records of the Grand Historian of China
Rochefoucauld, Francois de la - Maxims
Rojas, Fernando de - La Celestina
Ruskin, John - Unto This Last
Saga of King Hrolf Kraki
Salter, James - A Sport and a Pastime
Scott, Sir Walter - Waverly
Seneca - Letters From a Stoic
The Seven Odes (Al-Mu 'Allaqat)
Shankaracharya - Commentary on the Vedanta Sutra
Shantideva - Bodhicaryavatara
Shaw, George Bernard - Major Critical Essays
Shih Nah-an - The Water Margin (All Men Are Brothers/Shui Hu Chuan)
Singer, Isaac Bashevis - Collected Stories
Smith, Stevie - Collected Poems
Srimaladevisimhanada Sutra
Strindberg, August - Plays (many already read)
Sukhavetivyuha Sutras
Svevo, Italo - Confessions of Zeno
Terence - Comedies
Theocritus - Idylls
Traherne, Thomas - Centuries, Poems and Thanksgivings
Trollope, Anthony - He Knew He Was Right; Autobiography
Troyes, Chretien de - Ywain the Knight of the Lion
Turgenev, Ivan - On the Eve; A Sportsman's Notebook
Vega, Lope de - Major Plays (except La Dorotea and Lost in a Mirror)
Verga, Giovanni - Little Novels of Sicily; Mastro Don Gesvaldo; House By the Medlar Tree
Vico, Giambattista - Principles of a New science
White, Gilbert - The Natural History of Selborne
Wilson, Edmund - Patriotic Gore
Wyatt, Thomas - Poems
Yeats,William Butler - Mythologies
Zola, Emile - La Bete Humaine

Any guesses how long it'll take to finish reading them?


SteveQ said...

Okay, I threw a joke in the list. Go look for it.

Helen said...

I suspect the joke is the only book I actually recogize - sad or what?!!!!

I know a few more of the authors but no other book titles. I need to get reading!!!

Cormac McCarthy is one of my fav - have you read The Road? I started it but didn't get too far and have got re-started it...

Assume you have read Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness? It's been on my bookshelf for years but have yet to read it.

SteveQ said...

"The Road" is one of the few McCarthy books I haven't read. I loved "Blood Meridian," but it's hard to recommend. And I've read almost all of Conrad; my fave is "Nostromo."