no better, no worse, no change, no pain

reading list 2010

In Literature on December 22, 2009 at 1:02 am

“I have no spur
To prick the sides of my intent, but only
Vaulting ambition, which o’erleaps itself,
And falls on the other.”

While I shall not be making any new year’s resolutions this year – primarily so that I can mock others when they inevitably fail – I am trying something new: a reading list! It may just be my obsession with lists that has inspired this idea, because the process has thus far been VERY enjoyable. Perhaps more so than the – more disciplined – act of reading. Nevertheless, I can not be said to be in want of ambition, and below I present a list of books that will guide my reading for 2010. I am aiming to read 21 books next year, or approximately one per fortnight. Perhaps setting myself up for an epic failure, I will quote the wise ex-NSW premier, Mr. Rees: “I’ll give it a red-hot go”!


Adams, Glenda, Dancing on Coral
Amis, Martin, London Fields
Astley, Thea, The Acolyte
Atwood, Margaret, The Blind Assassin
Banks, Iain, The Crow Road
Beckett, Samuel, Murphy
Bellow, Saul, Herzog
Bernhard, Thomas, Yes
Böll, Heinrich, The Lost Honor of Katharina Blum
Brontë, Emily, Wuthering Heights
Brooks, Geraldine, People of the Book
Burroughs, William, Junkie
Byatt, A.S., Possession
Calvino, Italo, Invisible Cities
Camus, Albert, The Plague
Capote, Truman, In Cold Blood
Carey, Peter, Bliss
Carey, Peter, My Life as a Fake
Carey, Peter, Oscar and Lucinda
Carroll, Steven, The Time we have Taken
Carver, Raymond, Cathedral
Castro, Brian, The Bath Fuges
Chandler, Raymond, The Long Goodbye
Coetzee, J.M., Elizabeth Costello
Coetzee, J.M., Summertime
Coetzee, J.M., The Life and Times of Michael K
de Cervantes Saavedra, Miguel, Don Quixote
de Sade, Marquis, Justine
DeLillo, Don, The Body Artist
Doctorow, E.L., Billy Bathgate
Dostoevsky, Fyodor, Crime and Punishment
Easton Ellis, Bret, American Psycho
Eco, Umberto, The Name of the Rose
Eliot, George, Adam Bede
Eugenides, Jeffrey, Middlesex
Faulkner, William, The Hamlet
Fielding, Henry, Amelia
Fitzgerald, F. Scott, Tender is the Night
Flanagan, Richard, Sound of One Hand Clapping
Foer, Jonathan Safran, Everything is Illuminated
Forster, E.M., A Passage to India
Fowles, John, A Maggot
Garner, Helen, The First Stone
Gide, André, The Immoralist
Grass, Günter, The Tin Drum
Green, Henry, Party Going
Greene, Graham, The Quiet American
Grenville, Kate, Dark Places
Grenville, Kate, The Secret River
Hamsun, Knut, Hunger
Hawthorne, Nathaniel, The Scarlet Letter
Hemingway, Ernest, To Have and Have Not
Herbert, Xavier, Capricornia
Hesse, Herman, Steppenwolf
Horne, Donald, The Lucky Country
Houellebecq, Michael, Platform
Huxley, Aldous, Antic Hay
Isherwood, Christopher, The Last of Mr. Norris
Ishiguro, Kazuo, Remains of the Day
Jolley, Elizabeth, Cabin Fever
Joyce, James, Ulysses
Kafka, Franz, The Trial
Keneally, Thomas, Three Cheers for the Paraclete
Kennedy, Cate, The World Beneath
Kundera, Milan, The Book of Laughter and Forgetting
Kureishi, Hanif, The Buddha of Suburbia
Lawrence, D.H., Kangaroo
Lawrence, D.H., Sons and Lovers
Le Clezio, J.M.G, The Flood
Lessing, Doris, The Grass is Singing
Lewis, Wyndham, The Apes of God
Malouf, David, Ransom
Mann, Thomas, Death in Venice
Mansfield, Katherine, The Garden Party
Márquez, Gabriel García, Love in the Time of Cholera
Márquez, Gabriel García, One Hundred Years of Solitude
Maugham, William, Of Human Bondage
McCullough, Colleen, Thorn Birds
Miller, Alex, The Ancestor Game
Miller, Henry, Tropic of Cancer
Mitford, Nancy, Love in a Cold Climate
Morrison, Toni, Song of Solomon
Munro, Alice, Too Much Happiness
O’Brien, Flann, The Poor Mouth
Oates, Joyce, Black Water
Ondaatje, Michael, The English Patient
Pamuk, Orhan, Museum of Innocence
Sartre, Jean-Paul, Nausea
Scott, Kim, Benang
Stow, Randolph, To the Islands
Süskind, Patrick, The Pigeon
Thompson, Hunter S., Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas
Tolstoy, Leo, Anna Karenina
Toltz, Steve, A Fraction of the Whole
Updike, John, Rabbit, Run
Wharton, Edith, The Age of Innocence
White, Edmund, The Beautiful Room is Empty
Woolf, Virginia, Night and Day
Woolf, Virginia, To The Lighthouse
Wright, Alexis, Carpentaria
Zuzak, Markus, The Book Thief


Beveridge, Judith, Storm and Honey
Plath, Sylvia, Ariel
Porter, Dorothy, The Monkey’s Mask


Grimwade, Steve, Literary Melbourne

  1. Good luck! I hope you still have room for unplanned pleasures

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