Amazon’s 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime

Amazon's 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime

Since 2015, I’ve been working very slowly through Amazon’s 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime.  There’s no deadline for it (apart from the obvious one), but it would be nice to tick off a dozen or so a year.

A link to the Amazon page can be found here, where you can also buy the books, though as most are deemed to be ‘classics’ in one form or another, they’ll almost definitely be available from local bookshops and libraries.

(I’ll be updating this page over time as I tick more off the list)

Just Begun: Children’s Books (9/10)

  • The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter
  • The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson
  • We’re Going on a Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen
  • The Tiger Who Came to Tea by Judith Kerr
  • Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne
  • The Enchanted Wood by Enid Blyton
  • The Worst Witch by Jill Murphy
  • Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl
  • The Story of Tracy Beaker by Jacqueline Wilson
  • Goodnight Mister Tom by Michelle Magorian

Moving On: Older Children and Young Adults (3/10)

  • Watership Down by Richard Adams
  • Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J. K. Rowling
  • Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer
  • Stormbreaker by Anthony Horowitz
  • Noughts & Crosses by Malorie Blackman
  • I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
  • Lord of the Flies by William Golding
  • The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas by John Boyne
  • The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾ by Sue Townsend
  • The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank

Approachable Classics (2/10)

  • Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
  • To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  • Catch 22 by Joseph Heller
  • The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
  • The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
  • The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle
  • Tess of the d’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy
  • Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
  • Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Something More Modern (1/10)

  • The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat by Oliver Sacks
  • The Hare with the Amber Eyes by Edmund de Waal
  • Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami
  • Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy by John le Carre
  • The Wasp Factory by Iain Banks
  • Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
  • Oranges Are Not The Only Fruit by Jeanette Winterson
  • The Commitments by Roddy Doyle
  • Schindler’s Ark by Thomas Keneally
  • Knots & Crosses by Ian Rankin

Classics: Nineteenth Century and Earlier (1/5)

  • Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift
  • Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
  • Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
  • The Mill on the Floss by George Elliot
  • Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Explore Alternative Worlds (1/10)

  • The Fellowship of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • American Gods by Neil Gaiman
  • The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
  • The Stand by Stephen King
  • The Time Machine by H. G. Wells
  • The Colour of Magic by Terry Pratchett
  • Watchmen by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons
  • The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
  • Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? by Philip K. Dick
  • A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin

Contemporary Fiction (2/20)

  • The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (I read the graphic novel… is that cheating? Answer: probably)
  • Trainspotting by Irvine Welsh
  • High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
  • Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding
  • The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • White Teeth by Zadie Smith
  • The Road by Cormac McCarthy
  • American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis
  • The English Patient by Michael Ondaatje
  • Atonement by Ian McEwan
  • A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry
  • The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
  • The Secret History by Donna Tartt
  • Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro
  • Birdsong by Sebastia Faulks
  • The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
  • Last Orders by Graham Swift
  • The Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes
  • Dissolution by C. J. Sansom
  • London Fields by Martin Amis

Twentieth Century Classics (2/15)

  • Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
  • Nineteen Eighty-Four by George Orwell
  • One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
  • Cider with Rosie by Laurie Lee
  • Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  • Casino Royale by Ian Fleming
  • The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway
  • Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
  • Brighton Rock by Graham Greene
  • Rebecca by Daphne de Maurier
  • Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie
  • All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque
  • To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf
  • My Man Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse

Non-fiction Essentials (0/10)

  • Freakonomics by Steven D Levitt
  • A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawkins
  • Long Walk to Freedom by Nelson Mandela
  • Wild Swans by Jung Chang
  • London: The Biography by Peter Ackroyd
  • Venice by Jan Morris
  • Notes From a Small Island by Bill Bryson
  • The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins
  • A History of the World in 100 Objects by Neil Macgregor
  • Bad Science by Ben Goldacre

Total read: 22/100

How many have you read?  Are there any books you think are missing from Amazon’s list?


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  • Reply Marwhal

    I’m kind of obsessed with reading challenges right now and I might give this one a try! Sounds fun.

    August 26, 2015 at 8:17 pm
  • Reply Joyce Gitana

    Reblogged this on OKAY?.

    August 29, 2015 at 1:06 am
  • Reply August Round-Up | Wandering Words

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    August 31, 2015 at 6:23 pm
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    […] I think Norwegian Wood is a book I will carry with me for a number of years, and I am thrilled to know there are many more Murakami books waiting for me to read (plus, I just realised I can now tick one more off Amazon’s 100 Books to Read in a Lifetime list). […]

    August 31, 2016 at 1:35 pm
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