1001 Books

I bought 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die August 2007 after (and I’m confessing my shameful secret here) seeing an actor reading it in a Hollywood gossip magazine. I don’t remember the actor, it was an older male, and I don’t remember the mag (although it was probably US–I used to have a subscription).

I bought the book because I love reading. I’ll read anything. Yes, even Hollywood gossip mags. I bought the book, ran home,  and immediately sat down in my comfy chair to page through it. I was ashamed to learn that I had only read 48/1001 (4.8%) books on the list. I may have read more. Some books I feel I should have read, but can’t quite remember if I did or not. Those books I left off my list. There’s also a few books I’ve started and never finished. Those aren’t on the list either.

I’ve shared this book with a few friends and I think its neat that we all have our niche when it comes to books. I’m more of a contemporary lit fan. One friend likes the revolutionary flower-power books of the 1960’s and 1970’s and another friend likes the classic lit of Europe.

I immediately went to Amazon and ordered a bunch of the books on the list. Since my initial burst of excitement of crossing off titles, I’ve slowed down considerably. My number is currently at a lowly 57 (5.7%) books.

I’ve recently discovered the 1% Well-Read Challenge, which challenges bloggers to read 10 books on the list in 10 months. I’ve missed the boat in joining the challenge–it ends in February–but it’s reignited my desire for crossing off titles.

Hence, this post. I’m posting this to publicly challenge myself to regularly read one of the 1001 Books I have not read.

Update: Oh no, there’s been an update to this book, a 2008 edition. 282 books were added, which means 282 were deleted. Including a bunch I’ve read. I’ve decided to stick with the original list and maybe pursue the additions as extra credit.

Arukiyomi has created a great Excel spreadsheet you can get here for both the original version and the update.

Here’s the original list:

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