101 books for the college-bound

Like Jessica, I’m not exactly college-bound (I got my bachelor’s nearly 10 years ago now, but I do often think of going back for a master’s), but I do love book lists, and I recall the unending lists of this sort from high school. I haven’t read very many of these books recommended by the College Board for college bound high-schoolers. This list does consist of many books I want to read, though. Rose City Reader apparently started this meme; I got it from Jessica.

I thought this looked like fun for this Friday.

The books I’ve read are bold; italics indicates that I’ve read an excerpt or partially finished the whole book. I put an asterisk by the one I firmly plan to read this year.

Things Fall Apart, by Chinua Achebe
A Death in the Family, by James Agee
Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
Go Tell It on the Mountain, by James Baldwin
Waiting for Godot, by Samuel Beckett
The Adventures of Augie March, by Saul Bellow
Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte
Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte
The Stranger, by Albert Camus
*Death Comes for the Archbishop, by Willa Cather
Don Quixote, by Miguel de Cervantes
The Canterbury Tales, by Geoffrey Chaucer
The Cherry Orchard, by Anton Chekhov
The Awakening, by Kate Chopin
Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad
The Last of the Mohicans, by James Fenimore Cooper
The Red Badge of Courage, by Stephen Crane
Inferno, by Dante
Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe
A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens
Crime and Punishment, by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, by Frederick Douglass
An American Tragedy, by Theodore Dreiser
The Three Musketeers, by Alexandre Dumas
The Mill on the Floss, by George Eliot
Invisible Man, by Ralph Ellison
Selected Essays, by Ralph Waldo Emerson
As I Lay Dying, by William Faulkner
The Sound and the Fury, by William Faulkner
Tom Jones, by Henry Fielding
The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
Madame Bovary, by Gustave Flaubert
The Good Soldier, by Ford Madox Ford
Faust, by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
Tess of the d’Urbervilles, by Thomas Hardy
The Scarlet Letter, by Nathaniel Hawthorne
Catch-22, by Joseph Heller
A Farewell to Arms, by Ernest Hemingway
The Iliad, by Homer
The Odyssey, by Homer
The Hunchback of Notre Dame, by Victor Hugo
Their Eyes Were Watching God, by Zora Neale Hurston
Brave New World, by Aldous Huxley
A Doll’s House, by Henrik Ibsen
The Portrait of a Lady, by Henry James
The Turn of the Screw, by Henry James
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, by James Joyce
The Metamorphosis, by Franz Kafka
The Woman Warrior, by Maxine Hong Kingston
To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
Babbitt, by Sinclair Lewis
The Call of the Wild, by Jack London
The Magic Mountain, by Thomas Mann
One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Bartleby the Scrivener, by Herman Melville
Moby Dick, by Herman Melville
The Crucible, by Arthur Miller
Beloved, by Toni Morrison
A Good Man is Hard to Find, by Flannery O’Connor
Long Day’s Journey into Night, by Eugene O’Neill
Animal Farm, by George Orwell
Doctor Zhivago, by Boris Pasternak
The Bell Jar, by Sylvia Plath
Selected Tales, by Edgar Allen Poe
Swann’s Way, by Marcel Proust
The Crying of Lot 49, by Thomas Pynchon
All Quiet on the Western Front, by Erich Maria Remarque
Cyrano de Bergerac, by Edmond Rostand
Call it Sleep, by Henry Roth
The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
Hamlet, by William Shakespeare
Macbeth, by William Shakespeare
A Midsummer Night’s Dream, by William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet, by William Shakespeare
Pygmalion, by George Bernard Shaw
Frankenstein, by Mary Shelley
Ceremony, by Leslie Marmon Silko
One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich, by Alexander Solzhenitsyn
Antigone, by Sophocles
Oedipus Rex, by Sophocles
The Grapes of Wrath, by John Steinbeck
Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson
Uncle Tom’s Cabin, by Harriet Beecher Stowe
Gulliver’s Travels, by Jonathan Swift
Vanity Fair, by William Thackeray
Walden, by Henry David Thoreau
War and Peace, by Leo Tolstoy
Fathers and Sons, by Ivan Turgenev
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
Candide, by Voltaire
Slaughterhouse-Five, by Kurt Vonnegut
The Color Purple, by Alice Walker
The House of Mirth, by Edith Wharton
Collected Stories, by Eudora Welty
Leaves of Grass, by Walt Whitman
The Picture of Dorian Gray, by Oscar Wilde
The Glass Menagerie, by Tennessee Williams
To the Lighthouse, by Virginia Woolf
Native Son, by Richard Wright

Total Read = 28, yikes.

How many have you read?


8 responses to “101 books for the college-bound

  1. I’ve read 33 all the way through, with two in bits and pieces. Not bad. Still, I wonder who makes these lists, and why they think THESE books are important…

  2. I love this list. I think this is more a lifetime of reading.

  3. I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to get back here to your site, because I love your comments you leave me. Now that I’ve been here, I LOVE the writing quotes you did for this week!!! I so need to get back to writing. I’ve added you to my blogroll so I’ll be back more often. Meantime, to the list for the college books – I’m happy to say that attending university did pay off, I have read some of these books! lol 😀

  4. About 35. Some of these books are too difficult for college-bound. I mean, books like Beloved, War and peace, The Woman Warrior and Crime and Punishment require more maturity to understand. I read a couple of them in high school and found I have either not understood the meaning or had been too flighty to pay attention to the details.

  5. Thanks for posting this list. I’m going to blog about it tomorrow, and I”ll be sure to link back here.

  6. Thanks for the mention! This is just one of the many “Must Read” lists I compulsively keep track of on my blog. I’ve read 61 one of the so far and will eventually get through all of them. But I can’t say as I read many of them before graduating from high school!

  7. I just added a link to your list on my College Board post. Please let me know if you update your progress report.

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