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?
Article printed from Book Blog: http://www.stltoday.com/blogzone/book-blog
URL to article: http://www.stltoday.com/blogzone/book-blog/uncategorized/2009/03/10-books-people-lie-about-reading/
STLtoday.com. Sign up and you'll receive an email with unique stories of the day,
every Monday-Friday, at no charge.
Sign up at http://www.stltoday.com/newsletters/