This is my first week participating in Top Ten Tuesday, run by The Broke and the Bookish. It's a freebie week, which means we get to make a top ten list about anything we like. Like many other bloggers, I have a TBR pile amounting to hundreds of books so I decided to make a list of the top ten books I bought years and years ago, desperately want to read but for some reason just haven't picked up. Who knows, it might even spur me into action!
1. Roots by Alex Haley
This is my husband's favourite book and he has been wanting me to read it for years. I think it sounds very interesting and I loved Haley's careful editing in The Autobiography of Malcom X so I am pretty much guaranteed to like this too. One day!
2. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
Regular readers of my blog will know I'm a huge historical fiction fan, especially if the book centers around ancient history, women or the Jewish religion. The Dovekeepers is one of my favourite reads of 2012, so why haven't I picked up and read The Red Tent yet?
3. Secrets from the Sand by Zahi Hawass
Zahi Hawass is one of my idols. Not only is he an Egypotologist (I'm fascinated with Ancient Egypt) but I really admire his quest to get artifacts back to Egypt where they belong and to raise Egyptian awareness of their heritage. I've watched most of his documentaries and read some books he has contributed to, so I'm itching to read his autobiography. It's a gorgeous book too, with lots of full page colour photographs.
4. A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth
I must have owned this book for five years or more without reading it. The length puts me off, I keep intending to save it for the summer but then get sidetracked by shiny new books when sumer finally comes around.
5. The Fabric of the Cosmos by Brian Geene
I'm a part time astro-physics student and this book is my holy grail. I've watched Brian Greene's documentary series but have found this book too difficult in the past. When I finish the module I am doing now, I am going to read this book, understand it and enjoy it!
6. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
I call myself an Austen fan, but I've only read Emma and Pride and Prejudice. I even have a beautiful edition of Sense and Sensibility, so there is no excuse really.
7. The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet by David Mitchell.
When Cloud Atlas first came out, it was my favourite book for quite a while. I was so excited at the release of Jacob de Zoet that I pre-ordered a copy. That was in 2010, and I've still not read it!
8. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafron
Again, I am years behind the hype with this one and again, it was bought with the intention of reading it quickly.
9. To the Holy Shrines by Richard Burton
Richard Burton's version of Arabian Nights is just beautiful and he had quite a life too. To the Holy Shrines is his account of being the first Western man to visit Muslim holy sites.
10. The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett
Another epic book I've been promising myself I will read for years. I've heard nothing but good things about it and I'm sure I will love it. I even have the TV series saved on my sky+ box for when I've read it.
Am I the only one that buys books they really want to read, and then hoards them? What books have you been wanting to read for years?
The Shadow of the Wind. READ IT. NOW.....No seriously, why haven't you turned off the computer and gone running for the book? :)ReplyDelete
Because I am scared I won't like it as much as everyone else did! :PDelete
I'm a big historical fiction fan too but I still haven't read The Red Tent either despite it having been on my tbr list for years. The Pillars of the Earth is one of my favourite historical fiction novels, so I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! And I can highly recommend Roots - it's such a moving, powerful book.ReplyDelete
We have that in common then! I actually started watching the TV series of Roots when it was on TV as a replay a while ago, I only saw the first few episodes, but I found it really interesting.Delete
The Pillars of the Earth has been on my shelf for way too long as well. I urge you to read Sense & Sensibility because it really is one of Austen's best - but get me in the right mood and I'll say that of any of her novels. I think I might be one of the only readers on the planet who was taken with The Shadow of the Wind. I might need to give it a reread.ReplyDelete
I know the basic outline of Sense and Sensibility and think I would really enjoy it. Plus, think of all the posing I could do with the beautiful edition I own! :PDelete
Oooh, I love Sense and Sensibility (well, and all Austens, really. Except Mansfield Park, which I can take or leave). Hope you get round to it soon!ReplyDelete
I want to read all the remaining Austens at some point, but Sense and Sensibility is the one that really takes my fancy. I'm getting lots of encouragement to read it here, which is good :)Delete
Ummmm, gulp. I haven't read any of these either :( so many books, so little time! My husband really liked The Pillars of the Earth and that's the only one on your list that we actually own. I should probably start with it...but it is HUGE!ReplyDelete
A lifetime isn't long enough to read all the books I want to read now, let alone all the ones that will be published in the future that I will want to read. Apparently Pillars of the Earth is a fast read despite it's size, so that's encouraging.Delete
Yes, the old TBRs! I'm trying to get mine under control this summer too. Roots I read as a teenager and loved it; The Red Tent is wonderful, as was The Dovekeepers - I think you will really like it; Shadow of the Wind is fabulous as is Zafon's The Angel's Game, which I think I actually liked better); And Pillar's of the Earth reads surprisingly quickly for such a large book. My copy was something like 900 pages and I had it done in under a week. I have the sequel World Without End on my shelf too, which I've been eyeing lately. So many good titles here, Sam! I'm especially curious about Thousand Autumns and Suitable Boy. I've seen them around but haven't actually got copies of them myself. I'll be looking out for your reviews ;)ReplyDelete
Trish, lots of people have told me that Pillar of Earth is a quick read, it's encouraging for me that you had it done in a week. I will try to get to it this summer. A Suitable Boy is probably the one on my list I want to read the most.Delete
Sense and Sensibility is my second favorite novel -- ever. :)ReplyDelete
That makes me definite that I need to read it! What's your number one favourite novel, if you don't mind me asking?Delete
All great selection Sam! even the one by Zahi Hawass. I just admire his passion for his work. I too would love to read The Red Tent, David Mitchell's, Pillars of the Earth and A Suitable Boy. I read Shadow of the Wind and it was good. It will take you no time to finish it Sam.ReplyDelete
I have A Suitable Boy in plan this year, you think we can start motivate one another and get going with it this year? I got it for 2 years now. :)
I'm glad someone else appreciates Hawass, as you said, he's just so passionate about his work. I've commented on your blog about A Suitable Boy :)Delete
I haven't read any of these. I love ancient Egypt too so your #3 looks really interesting. I did try to read Shadow of the Wind but just couldn't get into it unfortunately.ReplyDelete
That just does to show that even really hyped books don't work for everyone. It happens to me sometimes too and it always feels like a bit of a let-down.Delete
I haven't read any of these either - and probably won't get to it, although I would love to read The Pillars of The Earth one day.ReplyDelete
Pillars of the Earth does sound good, doesn't it? I caught the first episode of the TV show and was hooked by it. I made a conscious decision to stop watching so I could read the book first, it's just a question of finding the time now.Delete
I've not read any of these either. You're not alone, I think we all have books that we hoard :)ReplyDelete
To be honest, I am a bit of a hoarder anyway. Every now and again I have to force myself to throw/recycle/donate boxes of stuff as I hate my house being too cluttered.Delete
Oh wow, some of my favorites are on this list. I first read The Red Tent in the middle of a feminist theology nonfiction reading spree, and it was great in that context. It says something that I owned a copy when I was a starving college student and moving all the time. Sense and Sensibilty - just my favorite Jane Austen book, no big deal. I think it is because I identified so much with Eleanor.ReplyDelete
Shadow of the Wind - I've been saving it. I read The Angel's Game and loved it, and everyone kept saying Shadow of the Wind was even better. One friend sighed and said she wished she could read it again for the first time! Well. Another Zafon novel just came out in an English translation, so I guess I can let myself read Shadow.
Jenny, I just know I will love The Red Tent and so I'm almost scared to read it just in case I don't love it as much as I think I will. So far Pride & Prejudice is my favourite Austen, but I still have 4 books to go, so I'm sure that will change.Delete
I've been reading A Suitable Boy for over a month now and am not yet 50% of the way through it. BUT it's really, really good. I would compare it to Middlemarch except that I think it is much more engaging. I only read it on the weekends, but that is more because it's the sort of book you need to sit with for a few hours, not a little bit at a time.ReplyDelete
It's good to hear from someone reading the book. I thought it would be a book I would need to devote time too - this summer I am going to make the time and at least start it!Delete
Oh the problem of too many books and not enough hours to read, isn't it never ending like the proverbial piece of string. A couple of your books are on my list and a couple I have read. I have tried to stop buying books until I reduce the accumulated pile. I would be very interested in your opinion of the Burton work, a fascinating man. I have to admit the size of Suitable Boy has kind of stopped me from starting it but I think it might be a great summer holiday read. Pillars of the Earth is a really quick, relaxing read despite its size, a very enjoyable book and another good holiday book. I am now interested in the Zahi Hawass book, I didn't know he had written an autobiography and I think that should be a fascinating read. I look forward to reading future posts, maybe on some of those books. Have fun reading!ReplyDelete
Definitely like the proverbial piece of string - my life isn't going to be long enough for all the old, current and future books I want to read. I have stopped buying too (apart from a Dickens set I have in the post) but need to stop my library habit as well so I can focus on my unread books.Delete
The Hawass book is quite obscure, you would think given how popular he is for documentaries etc and given his job, the book would be a bit more out there.
So, I've read Roots, The Red Tent, Sense and Sensibility, The Shadow of the Wind, and The Pillars of the Earth and I can tell you that they're all fantastic books! You have very good taste :-)ReplyDelete
I hope I enjoy them as much as you did, Sarah. Sounds like I have a treat in store! :)Delete
I loved Roots and Shadow of the Wind! I've been meaning to read Sense and Sensibility and The Pillars of the Earth for a long time too.ReplyDelete
I think Pillars of the Earth often gets pushed to the end of our TBR piles because of the length of the book. I will make a concerted effort to get to it soon.Delete
I've read none of these... except part of Sense and Sensibility. Ohh, Colonel Brandon is much more swoon-worthy than Darcy will ever be! I've seen the movie with Alan Rickman. I have expectations, haha!ReplyDelete
I'd really like to give Jane Austen's books another chance at some point. I have a feeling that my Kindle will be getting a work out soon so perhaps the time is nigh!
I've only read two Jane Austens but I liked them both. I've found that it really helps to have seen a good mini-series before starting to read, although it does spoil the ending a bit.Delete
I've read four of these: The Red Tent, Shadows of the Wind, The Thousand Autumns of Jacob De Zoet and Pillars of the Earth. If you read them in order of awesomeness they would be read in this order:ReplyDelete
1. The Red Tent
2. Pillars of the Earth
3. Shadows of the Wind
4. The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet
(in fact, you could probably not read the David Mitchell. I loved Cloud Atlas too and I didn't enjoy Jacob de Zoet).
Back in 2001, I had come out of a long reading slump. My late teens and early twenties started slow on the reading front because I'd been so preoccupied with getting into college, etc. Well, in 2001, I transferred school and shortly before that I'd sort of rediscovered reading. The Red Tent was one of the first books I picked up when I started reading again and it has stayed with me all these years. It's definitely one I want to re-read.ReplyDelete
And I'd like to read The Pillars of the Earth sooner than later.
You have some great books on the list! Roots, Sense & Sensibility, The Red Tent. I loved Jacob de Zoet (and everything else by Mitchell). Sense & Sensibility is not my favorite Austen but they are all good! I found Shadow of the Wind a little overhyped but everyone else loves it.ReplyDelete
I really want to read Pillars of the Earth.
I made a list a few years ago of Books to Read Before I Die, and it got me to read War and Peace and The Count of Monte Cristo. So I hope you get to some of these!
I have not read the majority of these. I read Roots in high school, but would love to pick it up again. I remember the story for the most part, but have forgotten the majority of the details. It is an important piece of literature and it is worth another look.ReplyDelete
I have read Sense and Sensibility and The Red Tent. You have a couple of books listed that I am not familiar with, so I will have to look them up.
I buy books I'm almost desperate to read - and then there they sit, gathering dust... I've just read Pillars of the Earth and I was so pleasantly surprised by it. I am not a big fan of historical fiction but this one was really, really good. It's kind of a good thing that you've waited with reading Shadow of the Wind because now the entire trilogy has been published :-) (btw - can you tell I'm hugely behind on my reading and commenting on blog posts?!)ReplyDelete
I loved Pillars of Earth. I couldn't put it down and as you know it is long...my husband threatened me not to go to the library for a while :)ReplyDelete