Last night I was puttering around the Guardian as I sometimes do, and I decided to test myself with their 2010 Literary Quiz. The competition is long over, but if you would like to feel as stupid as I did, you can test yourself HERE.
Before you click, be warned, I got one question right. They are STUPID hard.
The answers, if you care, can be found HERE.
And because I am very very nice (and because I felt like a terrible English Major after this, as I'm sure you do too, even if you're not an English major) I compiled a list of most, if not all, of the books that one would have to read to ace this quiz.
That list, after the picture. THIS was another article of interest that I found in the last few days. Books as art? Can your kindle do that? Didn't think so. And while I much prefer the look of my own bookshelf, with books in their own covers, and I cringe a little at the superficialness of some of these people, there were a couple in the article who were actually interested in reading their books too.
Speaking of reading. On to the list that I have assembled for you (and me. Mostly me. I'm just nice enough to share certain things with you) Note: Some of the answers were authors, so just their names are on the list, not specific works.
Moby Dick- Herman Melville
Our Man in Havana- Graham Greene
These Demented Lands- Alan Warner
Pale Fire- Nabokov
Harmonium- Wallace Stevens
Memories of West Street and Lepke- Robert Lowell
Gaius Cornelius Gallus
Sohrab and Rustum- Matthew Arnold
Travels with a Donkey in the Cevennes- Robert Louis Stevenson
The Constant Nymph- Margaret Kennedy
Un Hiver a Majorque- George Sand
Heartbreak House- George Bernard Shaw
The Designated Mourner- Wallace Shawn
Marnie- Winston Graham
Topaz- Leon Uris
Frenzy- Arthur La Bern
Family Plot- Victor Canning
Tess of the D'Urbervilles- Thomas Hardy
Ulysses- James Joyce
The Castafiore Emerald- Herge
The Sound and the Fury- William Faulkner
Roseanna- Peter Wahloo and Maj Sjowall
Jump!- Jilly Cooper
One Day- David Nicholls
Mrs Dalloway- Virginia Woolf
Herland - Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Heart of a Dog- Bulgakov
The Unbearable Lightness of Being - Milan Kundera
Vanity Fair- Thackeray
Bleak House- Dickens
The Biographer's Tale- A.S. Byatt
Goodbye to Berlin- Christopher Isherwood
The Wind in the Willows- Kenneth Grahame
The Black Prince - Iris Murdoch
New Grub Street - George Gissing
A Dance to the Music of Time- Anthony Powell
We Think the World of You- J.R. Ackerly
The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster
Jane Eyre- Charlotte Bronte
Under the Net- Iris Murdoch
Blindness- Jose Saramego
That should keep you busy for awhile. I plan on reading them all (except the poetry. No interest in poetry) at some point. If you find flaws in the list, blame the fact that I was watching The Maiden Heist while I wrote them down. And if you need a break from all that reading, watch The Maiden Heist- it's a funny movie.