30 Books to Read Before You Die (Pt. 32)

by Annie Kapur about a year ago in literature


30 Books to Read Before You Die (Pt. 32)

Now that we're on Part 32, people will normally say. "Haven't you ran out of things to talk about yet?" And my answer is "no." I still have a lot I want to get through, and in this introduction, I'm going to explain to you why I don't like the website GoodReads. Now, there's lots of good things about the website and it helps a lot of people, but personally, I've found it to be a bit boring and a bit of a hinderance to me finding new reading material—it just hasn't helped me much, and here's why.

The first reason it hasn't helped me much is because the books that are put at the forefront are normally those boring ones that every next person is reading. I think Haruki Murakami said it best when he said the if you only read what everyone else is reading, then you can only think how everyone else thinks. It's not that I don't read popular fiction of today, I just don't like seeing it shoved in my face wherever I look. It seems to be the only thing on GoodReads worth talking about.

The second reason is that it fails at being social to any degree. I've gone through GoodReads lists and taken a look, mainly, at horror novels. It's always the same. Stephen King, Joe Hill, HP Lovecraft, Shirley Jackson and repeat. The place I go to search for obscure horror novels now is on Instagram through the #horrorfiction tag. Normally there are some really good ones on there (and ones I haven't yet read!).

The third reason is that it just isn't very inclusive. I don't see a lot of men or ethnic minorities or even teenagers on there. It's pretty much 95% middle-aged, middle class, white woman. It's just not a place you'd want to go to find any quality popular literature. You just get 50 Shades of Grey shoved in your face over and over again.

I mean there are some good things about GoodReads as well. The fact that they produce some good lists on classic literature sometimes may be a plus, and they hold competitions etc. to try and get people more involved. I just think it's a failing platform myself, and I don't really find it helpful, so I steer clear of the whole site.

On a good note, we are actually on Part 32, and yet we are nowhere near finishing our series. I want to say thank you if you've made it this far and I would also like to say hello if you're new here. It doesn't really matter where you jump in as long as you're someone who is looking for something new to read!

Remember, I'll never recommend you a book I haven't read myself and my personal favourites are marked with a (*). I will talk about one or two intermittently throughout the article, but I bet you think I've done enough talking already! Let's get on with it then—here's numbers 931 to 960!


Franz Kafka

931. In the Penal Colony by Franz Kafka

932. Rich in Russia by John Updike

933. The Lady in the Looking Glass by Virginia Woolf*

934. Bluebeard by Angela Carter*

935. The Magic Paint by Primo Levi

936. Terra Incognita by Vladimir Nabokov*

937. Hermit in Paris by Italo Calvino

938. A Life in Letters by George Orwell

939. 'Heroes and Villains' by Angela Carter*

Funny story about this one, I was only re-reading this a few days ago after getting my very own copy (today is the 22 of July, 2019—I think it will be far gone by the time this article is published). I read it the first time when I was in university and had recently read and analysed The Bloody Chamber for absolutely no reason whatsoever in my first year of an undergraduate degree. Why? Well because I didn't end up doing my analysis on Angela Carter at all. But now I've got my own copy I can read whenever I want, and reliving that reading was an amazing experience. In my opinion, Heroes and Villains is much more captivating than The Bloody Chamber, so don't miss it out!

940. The Queen's Necklace by Italo Calvino


Jack Kerouac

941. London Journal by James Boswell

942. The Complete Short Stories by Evelyn Waugh*

943. We the Living by Ayn Rand

944. The Western Lands by William S. Burroughs

945. Mary by Vladimir Nabokov

946. In America by Susan Sontag

947. Numbers in the Dark by Italo Calvino

948. Maggie Cassidy by Jack Kerouac*

949. The Letters of Nancy Mitford and Evelyn Waugh*

950. The Last Tycoon by F. Scott Fitzgerald


F. Scott Fitzgerald

951. Fever by JMG Clezio

952. The Enchanter by Vladimir Nabokov

953. The Complete Cosmicomics by Italo Calvino

954. Fantastic Tales by Italo Calvino*

955. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button by F. Scott Fitzgerald*

956. The Wild Boys by William S. Burroughs

957. The Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault by Angela Carter

958. On Photography by Susan Sontag

959. Anthem by Ayn Rand

960. The Yage Letters by William S. Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg

Annie Kapur
Annie Kapur
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Annie Kapur

Film and Writing (M.A)

Focus in Film: Adaptation from Literature, Horror Filmmaking Styles and Auter Cinema

Author of: "The Filmmaker's Guide" series

Email: [email protected]

See all posts by Annie Kapur