Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

I watched a programme on Channel Five which had compiled a list of the top thirty British novels. From what I recall Waterstones the book shop had provided a list of their best selling 50 British novels and people voted for their favourite. I love a nice list of books so I was hooked. I am pleased to say that I have read 20 of them, and even more pleased that this gave me 10 good books to read this year, especially handy to have when all but the central library in town closed for 8 weeks to redeploy library staff. Here is the list- the ones in bold are the ones I haven’t read yet, but hope to do so this year.

30 Lady Chatterley’s LoverD H Lawrence

29 White Teeth- Zadie Smith

28 Casino Royale- Ian Fleming

27 Bridget Jones Diary- Helen Fielding

26 Small Island- Andrea Levy

25 Knots and Crosses- Ian Rankin

24 Howards End- E M Forster

23 Lord of the Flies William Golding

22 Vanity Fair William Makepeace Thackery

21 Atonement- Ian McEwan

20 Dracula- Bram Stoker

19 The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes- Conan Doyle

18 Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy- John le Carre

17 The Day of the Triffids- John Wyndham

16 The Remains of the Day- Kazuo Ishiguro

15 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night- Mark Haddon

14 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin-Louis de Bernieres

13 Far from the Madding CrowdThomas Hardy

12 And then there were none- Agatha Christie

11 Wolf Hall- Hilary Mantel

10 Middlemarch- George Elliot

9 Birdsong- Sebastian Faulks

8 David Copperfield- Charles Dickens

7 Hitchhiker’s guide to life in the galaxy- Douglas Adams

6 Rebecca- Daphne du Maurier

5 Wuthering Heights- Emily Bronte

4 1984 – George Orwell

3 Jane Eyre- Charlotte Bronte

2 Lord of the Rings- Tolkien

1 Pride and Prejudice- Jane Austin

How many of these have you read? Is your favourite here? Since I watched this programme I have found the Independent newspaper had compiled a list of 40 books, some are here, some I have read, but all in all lots of excellent reading ahead for me, plus of course all the recommendations that you give me.

The weather in the UK is cold for us, so a weekend under the crochet blanket with a good book seems like a plan for me. Will you be reading over the weekend?

Comments on: "The Channel Five Top 30 British Books" (31)

  1. I’ve read 10 out of 30. Happy to see a few personal favourites on the list like Wuthering Heights, Pride and Prejudice, Bridget Jones Diary and Rebecca. 😊

  2. I’ve read many of those books! I so loved Bridget Jones’ Diary, the film did not do the book justice.
    I will never get out my head her fear of being found someday eaten by her dogs, just one of the funniest things I’ve ever read in a book:
    “And that was it. Right there. Right there, that was the moment… I suddenly realized that unless something change soon I was going to live a life where my major relationship was with a bottle of wine and I’d finally die fat and alone and be found three weeks later half-eaten by Alsatians, or I was about to turn into Glenn Close in Fatal Attraction.” – Helen Fielding, Bridget Jones’ Diary

  3. I’ve ready maybe a third of them. One that I haven’t is Rebecca, but I watched the series, it’s great! I heard the book has a different ending, so I’ll add it on my list.

  4. Small Island is great, I only read that a year or so ago and loved it. I read the first Lord of the Rings book but just couldn’t get into the second one. Wolf Hall is probably my favourite from that list!

  5. I’ve read a few but seen a lot of film or TV versions. Not sure that counts though.

    • I am convinced a lot of peple say Lord of the Rings without reading the book. Amazing how many have been made into films or TV dramas.

  6. In general this was a great list and I was surprised at how many I had read. For me, Jane Eyre is number 1 though!

  7. I’ve read 12 off the list, I don’t really have a favourite book. x

  8. I was surprised at how many of these I have read. How do I pick a favorite? I do know the one that I really did not enjoy was Atonement. Just the first few chapters…yikes.

  9. Carol in Texas said:

    I too love lists. If only I read faster! I have read only 9 from that list…..my favorite one being Wolf Hall. I read all three of that trilogy…..the first was the best. News of the World by Paulette Jiles is a book i highly recommend…..set in my state of Texas. It is a terrific book. I have also enjoyed The Dutch House by Ann Patchett…..a new author for me and she writes beautifully. I am currently reading The Mystery of Mrs. Christie by Marie Benedict.

    It is cold here right now….21 degrees F this morning. A low of 2 is expected Monday morning! This is record cold for central Texas…..too cold! I am so glad I found your blog!

    • Thanks for stopping by. I have noted the books you mention, I love gettting recomendations from bloggers, you all know the best books.

  10. I was surprised to find I had read about half of them. Also surprised they got the title of “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy” wrong. An interesting mix.

  11. The only ones I haven’t read are the Ian Fleming and Ian Rankin ones and the John le Carré which is the only one I have any intention of perhaps reading one day.
    Of those few you haven’t read, I recommend ‘Small Island’ and ‘Birdsong’ although, if you are a Thomas Hardy fan ‘Far From The Madding Crowd’ is also worth reading.although ‘Tess of the d’Urbevilles’ is my favourite Hardy novel I would like to re-read some Thomas Hardy now that I’m living in the midst of ‘Hardy Country’.

    • Hardy country is so pretty- should it be possible I think we will try for a week’s holiday there this Summer. Surprisingly the Ian Fleming book isn’t available in the library, I’ll be reliant on charity shops for it! Birdsong is in my tbr heap. I’m going to try to read all 30 before the year end!

  12. I’ve read 21 of them – need to look for the other 9!

  13. Murtagh's Meadow said:

    Oh Pride and Prejudice is my favourite too! I can also recommend number 26, Small island and 9 Birdsong. I have read quite a few that you have but definitely some on that list I would like to read.

  14. I’ve read 15 from the list and won’t be tempted by the 15 I haven’t read ^^ A lot of these titles are ye olde classics, which is probably explains why they’re on the best seller list at Waterstones, many probably still on the recommended reading lists for English Lit students lol. I do still enjoy re-reading Jane Austen or Thomas Hardy (my favourites being P&P and The Mayor of Casterbridge, respectively) . . . but my all-time favourite so far this century is still “The Sewing Machine” by Natalie Fergie ^^

    • Some of the old classics are harder to read, I like them as they do tell me something of the times in which they were written, which in turn help explain why we are where we are today. But then I love social history, and novels are another source of information. The one that I’ll find hardest is the Douglas Adams- I don’t like sci-fi or fantasy novels. But I’ll tackle it with an open mind if I can.

  15. Interesting list. I’ve read 1, 3, 4, 5, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 18, 21, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27 and 29 (although I regret the time wasted on #27…) Currently engrossed in The City of Falling Angels by John Berendt. No crochet blankets in this part of the globe right now!!

    • Did you not like Bridget Jones- I did! Don’t blame you for missing out on Lord of the Rings, I did skipp the forty pages it took to write one battle, which my sons assured me were the best bits of the book. No I don’t suppose you need warmth right now.

      • I prefer not to give my honest opinion of BJD here…
        Lord of the Rings – well, I accept that it is probably brilliant and that Tolkien was gifted, but fantasy worlds in fiction have never been my thing. I couldn’t get past the first 20 pages and never watched the films either. Did you know Tolkien was born in South Africa?
        I have the fan on my desk on full power. Yes, it’s that &$#@ hot 😦

        • BJD-Fair enough!
          Yes I think I did, and some scenes I believe he based on the African scenery. He also lived in Oxford of course, and the cotswold villages really do remind me of Middle Earth. I have been thrilled to discover a signpost on our way to Oxford to a village called Buckland and another called Tadpole Bridge- I just know I shall have to go.
          I’m huddled on the sofa under the crochet blanket.

          • Have just woken up to find it rained during the night – for once the weather forecasters got it right! I am overjoyed, and the half-dead things in the garden that were once thriving plants may well survive after all….:)
            PS. Relating to our previous topic, I also couldn’t get into Game of Thrones. I sat through the first season because my then-partner was obsessed with it, but I simply couldn’t face the rest.

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