Wednesday, March 18, 2009

My new goal

I just ran across this today and it gave me a new goal. I'm going to read every book on the list before Julianne graduates. I've read most of the Bible many times and all of the ones on the bottom list. I have War & Peace somewhere.
03.17.2009 3:23 pm
10 books people lie about reading
Post-Dispatch Book Editor

A survey in Britain says “1984″ by George Orwell is the book most people claim to have read - but haven’t. In other words, they lie. Perhaps not so surprising is the No. 4 book in the survey - the Bible.

A friend saw the list on Twitter and forwarded it. I confess, there are a lot of titles of which I’ve read parts - but not all. I have read ”1984″ though. But even if I hadn’t - would I lie about it? Would you? I was surprised earlier this year when my daughter’s high school English teacher surveyed parents to see whether they’d read “The Catcher in the Rye.” I apparently was one of only four parents who’d read it. And I DID read it - but would I confess to an English teacher if I hadn’t? (I guess a lot of parents did, but I would have been embarrassed.)

I’m not surprised, however, that people lie about reading the Bible. I suspect more people say they’ve read the whole thing than have.

Anyway, here are the top 10 books a British survey says readers lie about:

1. 1984 by George Orwell (42%)
2. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (31%)
3. Ulysses by James Joyce (25%)
4. The Bible (24%)
5. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (16%)
6. A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking (15%)
7. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie (14%)
8. In Remembrance of Things Past by Marcel Proust (9%)
9. Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama (6%)
10. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins (6%)

Interesting that the only American title is the one by President Obama. In America, I bet there are other books people might say they’ve read but hadn’t. My guesses:

1. “The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn” by Mark Twain

2. Something by Hemingway, perhaps: “For Whom the Bell Tolls”

3. “The Grapes of Wrath” by John Steinbeck

4. “Moby-Dick” by Herman Melville

5 “The Catcher in the Rye,” “To Kill a Mockingbird” ? - Do you have more titles to add? Have you lied about reading a book you haven’t?

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  1. Yes, but are you really going to read "Dreams From My Father?" /snark

  2. You got me there but I think I've read enough excerpts from it in the past few months to be able to say that I've read it?