I picked these 30 “must-read” books based mostly on size. I wanted all of them to be conveniently located on the same area of shelf, and this is what fit. I think it’s a nice selection, though. There’s a lot of YA, which is quick reading, but also some novels intended for an adult audience, plus several non-fiction works and a couple of classics. All of these books have probably been in my possession for at least a year, and some for over ten years. Some have come so highly recommended that it’s just plain silly that I haven’t read them yet. It’s time for all of them to prove their worth.
The rules: I must read all of these books by the end of 2019. I can read them in any order. If I don’t like a book, I can bail on it, but then I have to give the book away.
Here are the 30 books in list form, so that I can cross them off as I finish them:
- Mrs. Thistlebottom’s Hobgoblins by Theodore M. Bernstein
- The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
- The Ghost Map by Steven Johnson
- The Big House by George Howe Colt
- The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
Word by Word by Kory Stamper
- Common Sense by Thomas Paine
- King of Shadows by Susan Cooper
- The Colorado Kid by Stephen King
- Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor: On list of Top 100 Children’s Books.
- Hatchet by Gary Paulsen: On list of Top 100 Children’s Books.
- Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Paterson: On list of Top 100 Children’s Books. I
- Number the Stars by Lois Lowry: On list of Top 100 Children’s Books.
- The Slave Dancer by Paula Fox
- Telling True Stories edited by Mark Kramer and Wendy Call
- Learned Optimism by Martin E. P. Silgman
- Smiles to Go by Jerry Spinelli
- Witch Week by Diana Wynne Jones
- Maniac Magee by Jerry Spinelli: On list of Top 100 Children’s Books.
- Flush by Carl Hiaasen
- Of Cabbages and Kings by Marguerite Hurrey Wolf
- The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
- The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett
Time and the Art of Living by Robert Grudin Jenny and the Cat Club by Esther Averill
- Love, Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
- The Midnight Folk by John Masefield
- Beyond the Laughing Sky by Michelle Cuevas
- Jazz by Toni Morrison
- Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer