NPR ‘s audience are book lovers, so they were asked to name their favorite beach reads. Almost 16,000 people answered the call and cast 136,000 votes. From the votes, NPR picked the top 100.
Top of the list?
The Harry Potter series.
Did Twilight make it?
Yes, at #20
How about James Patterson?
Sigh, yes; at #67
Am I wrong to roll my eyes when a publisher compares a new book to the 1977 blockbuster, Thorn Birds?
Despite what you may think, it seems people still remember it. It’s on the list at #39.
How many classics made the cut?
Defining what’s a “classic” is always dangerous territory, but these sixteen titles are fixtures on school reading lists:
2. To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee
5. Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen
7. The Great Gatsby, by F. Scott Fitzgerald
15. The Catcher in the Rye, by J.D. Salinger
21. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain
32. East of Eden, by John Steinbeck (see also, Oprah Pick)
42. Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy (see also, Oprah Pick)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo, by Alexandre Dumas
51. Little Women, by Louisa May Alcott
57. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, by Lewis Carroll
66. The Old Man and the Sea, by Ernest Hemingway
71. The Sun Also Rises, by Ernest Hemingway
74. The Lord of the Flies, by William Golding
76. Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte
81. Cannery Row, by John Steinbeck
100. Treasure Island, by Robert Louis Stevenson
How did Oprah’s picks do?
Of the 64 titles that Oprah has picked for her Book Club, ten are on the list:
10. The Poisonwood Bible, by Barbara Kingsolver
19. Middlesex, by Jeffrey Eugenides
32. East of Eden, by John Steinbeck
35. One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
41. Pillars of the Earth, by Ken Follett
42. Anna Karenina, by Leo Tolstoy
49. I Know This Much Is True, by Wally Lamb
53. She’s Come Undone, by Wally Lamb
81. The Pilot’s Wife, by Anita Shreve [tie]
86. The Road, by Cormac McCarthy
James Frey didn’t make the list?
No. Neither did Jonathan Franzen’s The Corrections.
Are there any recent titles?
55. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, by Mary Ann Barrows
84. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, by Stieg Larsson