Top 25: Literature

This list has been critiziced as pointlessly long. I can see that, but I say that I like books so much that I am going to bore you all to death with the list anyway! hahaha! The list really represents a larger part of what I have read than you may think. I will give a simple summary of each plot, list one film version, and then add my comments. If you think in retrospect (or forespect) that I blew it, go ahead and say so.

Moby-Dick by Hermann Melville
Simple Summary: An old whaling captain is obsessed with killing an albino(?) whale which inadverdantly caused the amputation of his leg.
My Comments: This book is one of the most famous in American lit. I read it only because of that. It is far more tedious than no. 25 for being 3x longer. I feel lucky to have sped through it in three days. I could not analyze it if I wanted to, though.

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
Simple Summary: In the 1930s An African-American man is wrongly accused of a henious crime. The town lawyer strives to save him.
My Comments: If you think this sounds boring, I agree, mostly. But there is something about the story that gave me a reason to feel proud of having read it. It's one of those books that just affects you after the final line, however momentary the feeling is.

Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen

Simple Summary: A guy who's proud and a girl who's prejudiced against him just for that end up married.
My comments: First off, if you think I read this because I am insane, go ahead. Think so, but blame 'someone else'. The Proud and the Prejudiced could be pushovers, just as they thought of each other, but the ridiculous behavior of them and various others made this actually kind of fun to read...:)

Tarzan of the Apes by E.R. Burroughs

Simple Summary: A British noble orphaned at only days old grows to the peak of athletic ability due to being raised by apes.
My Comments: Be warned: Burroughs work has evident rascist tilts. Despite that, though, it is a fun story to read. The end includes one of the most comedic reactions to a MC I've seen...:)

No. 21.
Uncle Tom's Cabin by H.B. Stowe

Simple Summary: A highly competent slave is taken from the mid-South to the Deep South, meeting progressively harsher masters.
My Comments: UTC is another of those books that leaves you affected for having read it. Tom himself is probably one of the most memorable characters ever written. It has some semi-subtle humor, but in general, this is a serious book that is read primarily if one is out looking for the classics.

No. 20
The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S Lewis

Simple Summary: Six of the books follow the adventures of three parties of children from 'our world', who generally relied on to save a land called 'Narnia' The exception is the 4th book, in which Narnia is saved by Narnians.
My Comments: If you are a book person, the Chronicles are some of the books you read, perhaps several times. There are many elements that can be interpreted as Christian allegory, whether that was intentional or not. In my opinion, the best is #2, The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe.

Castaways of the Flying Dutchman by Brian Jacques

Simple Summary: A modern elaboration on an old legend, the Castaways trilogy follows a tragically cursed boy and dog as they travel the world, forever young, in search of those in need of aid.
My Comments: First off, Ben and Ned, the MCs, are laugh out loud funny throughout the books. Second off, I think this is the only series in which I prefer the middle (The Angel's Command) to the end (Voyage of Slaves). The premise could've kept this series going for who knows how long.

No. 18
Rob Roy by Walter Scott

Simple Summary: A British merchant is sent to live with his rustic uncle and cousins. The only smart one, sent as his replacement, embezzles all his father's money and flees, prompting the MC to call on the aid of the legendary Scottish outlaw Rob Roy.
My Comments: This book is a fun read, especially if you are 'into' the Scottish, or their landscape, at all, as I am. It would have placed higher on this list had the blurb on the back not revealed the whole plot.

No. 17
The Inheritance Cycle by Christopher  Paoloni

Simple Summary: A boy raises a dragon and discovers that the two of them are the last hope of their people
My Comments: The series borrows  extensively and evidently (per appearances) from the greatest quest series, LOTR. (Not surprising; the author was my age when first published). The series got better as he got older, but I'm afraid the final book will be full of conflict-wrap cliches. I will read it just to find out.:D

No. 16
Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

Simple Summary: A poor girl is raised by her rich cousins. She makes friends, everyone falls in love.
My Comments: I actually enjoyed this book once I got started. The end bothered me a bit though. See no. 21 for the rest.

No. 15
Around The World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

Simple Summary: In the 1800s, a wealthy man wagers against his friends that he can successfully circumnavigate the globe in 80 days.
My Comments: 80 days is one of the most fun books I have read. It is riddled with ironic comic relief, and is, as you can see, my favorite work by Verne (due to the humor)

No. 14
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy

Simple Summary: A generous English noble and his followers rescue French nobles from the French Riegn of Terror
My comments: This book is similar to The Three Musketters in notable ways. It is a lot of fun and sometimes very funny.

No. 13
The Three Musketteers  triolgy by Alexandre Dumas

Simple Summary: Four great swordsmen of the king's guard must foil the plans of the corrupt, worldly, Cardinal.
My Comments: The best part is the interaction between the musketeers. My personal favorite is Porthos. The other books are Twenty Years After and The Man In the Iron Mask.

No. 12
The Waverley novels by Walter Scott

Simple Summary: During the Jacobite rebellions, a sympathetic British noble fights alongside the Scots.
My Comments: Though tedious in parts, Waverley is actually an excellent story. The climax and wrap-up have great similarity to Braveheart, and are better.

No. 11
The Leatherstocking Tales by James. F. Cooper

Simple Summary: A backswoodsman and his two Indian friends battle enemies and guide friends during the earliest period of American expansion.
My Comments: Any stereotype of the 'noble savage' was perpetuated and perhaps begun by these books. LOM is another book that leaves you depressed at a sad ending. In fact, the closing pages of LOM are indelible. Excellent adventure stories.

No. 10
The Count Of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

Simple Summary: A man wrongly imprisoned for fourteen years gains a vast fortune and uses it for revenge.
My Comments: Though I enjoy the story (the MC is still likeable at the end, in a sad way), I never realized just how tedious it was to read aloud until I began doing so. As I said before, do not read the complete novel unless you hate plot twists. (btw, the full version could be rated R)

No. 9
Ben-Hur by Lew Wallace

Simple Summary: In the time of Christ, a Jewish merchant is struck with terrible misfortunes until he truly accepts Christ.
My Comments: I saw the film first, so I remember that better, but was excited to discover how accurate it turned out to be. Descriptions in the book can be tedious, though.

Ivanhoe by Walter Scott

Simple Summary: A knight returns from the Crusades in the time of king John to champion justice and find love.
My Comments: Ivanhoe is the medieival adventure story. Many memorable parts make it timeless. Richard III, Robin Hood, nefarious nobles, and both tragic and heroic heroes all in one story. One of the most fun ever.
The Count Of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas

Simple Summary: A man wrongly imprisoned for fourteen years gains a vast fortune and uses it for revenge.
My Comments: Though I enjoy the story (the MC is still likeable at the end, in a sad way), I never realized just how tedious it was to read aloud until I began doing so. As I said before, do not read the complete novel unless you hate plot twists. (btw, the full version could be rated R)

The Master And Commander series by Partick O'Brian

Simple Summary: The series follows the adventures of a British naval officer (Jack Aubrey) and his friend, the ship's surgeon, (Stephen Maturin) who is really a spy for naval inteligence) during the time of Napoleon.
My Comments: The series in general is excellent, but there are reasons why they are adult books instead of YA. The best book is the first (Master & Commander), the worst probably The Far Side of the World ( which is, ironically, the one made into a film...)

No. 6
Gods & Generals/The Killer Angels/The Last Full Measure by Michael & Jeff Sharra

Simple Summary: Tells the story of the American Civil War, beginning before the beginning and ending after the end, from inside the heads of USA and CSA officers who were really present.
My Comments: The best historical fiction I have read, far and away. In fact, they are so believeable that I was continually citing them as if they were really, undeniably, true as written. :D

No. 5
Redwall by Brian Jacques

Simple Summary: A mouse must search for a legendary sword to save his home from an evil rat warlord.
My Comments: 1. You think I'm crazy, don't you? 2. Having read that these were my favorite books from age 9-15, you think you underestimated my insanity.:D 3. The hares are rofl funny, the badgers are awesome (and suicidal), the best villians are the last and the first, the plots are all the same, I have Redwall posters on my wall, and you still think I'm crazy. :D

No. 4
The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

Simple Summary: In a place called Middle-Earth, a being known as a hobbit joins 13 dwarves and a wizard on a quest to slay a dragon.
My Comments: This book is hilarious throughout. The opening especially puts me in stitches. A must - read

No. 3
The Foundation trilogy by Isaac Asimov

Simple Summary: 3000 years in the future, a man establishes a new civilization destined to save the galaxy fron barbarism.
My Comments: If you enjoy sci-fi, these books are absolute must reads. I have never read such brilliantly twisty books. My mistake, there are actually 7 books, 4 of which I was not aware of until recently.

No. 2
Les Miserable by Victor Hugo

Simple Summary: This book is kind of hard to summarize in a line or two. 1000 pages of two entirely seperate (until the conclusion) and equally well-written story-lines. Involves a reformed convict millionare and a late-blooming Bonapartist (not the same generation) who meet over a girl.
My comments: I could hardly put this story down. Everyone was interesting. It was very satisfying. I liked how each of the enormous chapters was sub-divided for easier pausing.
No. 1!
The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

Simple Summary: With the help of various races of Middle-Earth, a nephew of #3's MC must travel to the center of the empire of the Dark Lord Sauron to destroy his power once and for all.
My Comments: Simply. Insanely. Awesome.

"Ride now to ruin and the world's ending!"-Eomer, ROTK
All book cover images found on Google.
I challenge each of my followers to make a favorites list of real books they have read, as long as possible up to 25! They'll be awesome to see!


  1. Awesome list. Not surprisingly LOTR is number 1 excellent choice, I need to try to read them some time. Have you seen The Count Of Monte Cristo movie? I watched it not that long ago it was a really good moive. I don't think I can think of 10 books or more that I liked other than Baseball statistics analyzation books.

  2. I am going to post the review for The Count Of Monte Cristo movie tomarrow.

  3. I can probably think of twenty five books easily, but I was just wondering, do I have to put down movie versions for my books?

  4. Actually I think I can make a list. Does non-fiction count?

  5. This is a response to you comment: I accidently wrote that I read the book. It was a typo and have fixed the post now, I have not read the book. And thank you for specifying the "Favorite Books" post I will try to make mine next week or sooner.