Help!: What to Read Next

I set up an OpenLibrary account some time ago to aid my reading and, as I was perusing this wonderful resource, I, of course, created several lists of books I wanted to read immediately, but have – perhaps unsurprisingly – not done so to date.  As the lists are relatively vast, I thought that I would note down a few titles to ask for your advice of which are the best texts to read first over the Christmas break.

1. The Castle by Franz Kafka
2. Tree and Leaf 
by J.R.R. Tolkien
3. The Plague
 by Albert Camus
4. Lady Oracle by Margaret Atwood
5. Life Among the Savages by Shirley Jackson
6. The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
7. The Beach by Alex Garland
8. The Magician’s Assistant by Ann Patchett
9. The Red Pony by John Steinbeck
10. Burning Bright by John Steinbeck
11. The Innocent and the Guilty by Sylvia Townsend Warner
12. Sarah Bernhardt
 by Francoise Sagan
13. Book of Blues by Jack Kerouac
14. Down the Garden Path by Beverley Nichols
15. Mrs Miniver by Jan Struther
16. Beatrix Potter by Elizabeth Buchan
17. Go Ask Alice by Anonymous
18. Nothing by Henry Green
19. Ignorance by Milan Kundera
20. My Happy Life by Lydia Millet
21. The Far-Away Bride by Stella Benson
22. A House Unlocked by Penelope Lively
23. The Balloon Man by Charlotte Armstrong
24. Celebrating Katherine Mansfield by Gerri Kimber & Janet Wilson
25. Come Along With Me by Shirley Jackson

Thanks so much for your help in narrowing down my list!

12 thoughts on “Help!: What to Read Next

  1. That’s an excellent list and there are half a dozen I would recommend instantly. However, I would probably say go for “The Plague” – I think it’s a truly wonderful book; when I first read it, I devoured it in a single day and felt the need to send all my friends postcards demanding they read it immediately (this was in pre-Internet days!).

    • Thanks so much, Jane! I’m writing an essay about ‘Lolly Willowes’ at present, and it’s definitely made me want to read everything which Warner wrote.

  2. So many wonderful books on your list, Kirsty! I’d say that you can never go wrong with Steinbeck (though he might make for a rather depressing read during Christmas) and ‘Celebrating Katherine Mansfield’ seems absolutely gorgeous! I’m usually fond of Atwood’s writing, but I haven’t read ‘Lady Oracle’ myself yet. ‘The Magician’s Assistant’ may also be a nice read for the holiday season 🙂

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