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The New Life Time Reading List

Well, we all know this is a problem of mine….finding, posting and “committing” to huge reading lists…but I read love this one! I recently purchased Clifton Fadiman’s A New Lifetime Reading Plan. Loved it so, I posted this big ole list! I honestly doubt i’ll read all of these…but it gives me inspiration just having it on my site.

TOTAL BOOKS: 390 TOTAL READ: 0 COMPLETE: 0% TOTAL TBR: 390 LEFT: 100%
Last Updated: January 20

The Reading List

The Epic of Gilgamesh
The Iliad – Homer
The Odyssey – Homer
The Analects – Confucius
The Books of Moses, The Old Testament – Anonymous
The Oresteia – Aeschylus
Oedipus Rex – Sophocles
Oedipus at Colonus – Sophocles
Antigone – Sophocles
Alcestis – Euripides
Medea – Euripides
Hippolytus – Euripides
The Trojan Women – Euripides
Electra – Euripides
The Bacchae – Euripides
The Histories – Herodotus
The History of the Peloponnesian War – Thucydides
The Art of War – Sun-tzu
Lysistrata – Aristophanes
The Clouds – Aristophanes
The Birds – Aristophanes
Selected Works – Plato
Ethics – Aristotle
Politics – Aristotle
Poetics – Aristotle
The Book of Mencius – Mencius
Bala Kanda, Book One of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Ayodhya Kanda, Book Two of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Aranya Kanda, Book Three of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Kishkindha Kanda, Book Four of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Sundara Kanda, Book Five of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Lanka Kanda, Book Six of The Ramayana – Anonymous
Uttara Kanda, Book Seven of the Ramayana – Anonymous
Adi Parva, Book One of The Mahabharata – Anonymous
Sabha Parva, Book Two of the Mahabharata – Anonymous
Vana Parva, Book Three of the Mahabharata – Anonymous
The Bhagavad Gita
Records of the Grand Historian – Ssu-ma Ch’ien
On the Nature of Things – Lucretius
The Aeneid – Virgil
Meditations – Marcus Aurelius
The New Testament – Anonymous
The Confessions – Saint Augustine
The Cloud Messenger – Kalidasa
Sakuntala – Kalidasa
The Koran
The Platform Sutra of the Sixth Patriarch – Hui-neng
Shah Nameh – Firdausi
The Pillow Book – Sei Shônagon
The Tale of Genji – Lady Murasaki
The Rubaiyat – Omar Khayyam
The Divine Comedy – Dante
The Romance of the Three Kingdoms – Luo Kuan-chung
The Canterbury Tales – Geoffrey Chaucer
The Thousand and One Nights
The Prince – Niccolo Machiavelli
Gargantua and Pantagruel – François Rabelais
Journey to the West – Wu Ch’eng-en
Selected Essays – Michel de Montaigne
Don Quixote – Miguel de Cervantes
Complete Works – William Shakespeare
Selected Works – John Donne
The Plum in the Golden Vase – Chin P’ing Mei
Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems – Galileo
Leviathan – Thomas Hobbes
Discourse on Method – René Descartes
Paradise Lost – John Milton
Lycidas – John Milton
On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity – John Milton
Sonnets – John Milton
Areopagitica – John Milton
Selected Plays – Molière
Thoughts (Pensées)- Blaise Pascal
Pilgrim’s Progress – John Bunyan
Second Treatise of Government – John Locke
The Narrow Road to the Deep North – Matsuo Bashô
Robinson Crusoe – Daniel Defoe
Gulliver’s Travels – Jonathan Swift
Candide and other works – Voltaire
An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding – David Hume
Tom Jones – Henry Fielding
The Dream of the Red Chamber (a.k.a. The Story of the Stone)- Ts’ao Hsüeh-ch’in
Confessions – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
Tristram Shandy – Laurence Sterne
The Life of Samuel Johnson – James Boswell
Basic Documents in American History – Thomas Jefferson and others
The Federalist Papers – Hamilton, Madison, and Jay
Faust – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Selected Works – William Blake
The Prelude – William Wordsworth
Selected Shorter Poems – William Wordsworth
Preface to the Lyrical Ballads – William Wordsworth
The Ancient Mariner – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Christabel – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Kubla Khan – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Biographia Literaria – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Writings on Shakespeare – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
Emma – Jane Austen
The Red and the Black – Stendhal
Père Goriot – Honoré de Balzac
Eugénie Grandet – Honoré de Balzac
Cousin Bette – Honoré de Balzac
Selected Works – Ralph Waldo Emerson
The Scarlet Letter – Nathaniel Hawthorne
Selected Tales – Nathaniel Hawthorne
Democracy in America – Alexis de Tocqueville
On Liberty – John Stuart Mill
The Subjection of Women – John Stuart Mill
The Voyage of the Beagle – Charles Darwin
The Origin of Species – Charles Darwin
Dead Souls – Nikolai Gogol
Short Stories and Other Works – Edgar Allan Poe
Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
Pickwick Papers – Charles Dickens
David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
Hard Times – Charles Dickens
Our Mutual Friend – Charles Dickens
The Old Curiosity Shop – Charles Dickens
Little Dorrit – Charles Dickens
The Warden – Anthony Trollope
The Last Chronicle of Barset – Anthony Trollope
The Eustace Diamonds – Anthony Trollope
The Way We Live Now – Anthony Trollope
Autobiography – Anthony Trollope
Jane Eyre – Charlotte Brontë
Wuthering Heights – Emily Brontë
Walden – Henry David Thoreau
Civil Disobedience – Henry David Thoreau
Fathers and Sons – Ivan Turgenev
The Communist Manifesto – Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels
Moby Dick – Herman Melville
Bartleby the Scrivener – Herman Melville
The Mill on the Floss – George Eliot
Middlemarch – George Eliot
Selected Poems – Walt Whitman
Democratic Vistas – Walt Whitman
Preface to the first issue of Leaves of Grass – Walt Whitman
A Backward Glance O’er Travelled Roads – Walt Whitman
Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Brothers Karamazov – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
Selected Plays – Henrick Ibsen
Collected Poems – Emily Dickenson
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
Through the Looking-Glass – Lewis Carroll
Huckleberry Finn – Mark Twain
The Education of Henry Adams – Henry Adams
The Mayor of Castorbridge – Thomas Hardy
The Principles of Psychology – William James
Pragmatism – William James
Four Essays from The Meaning of Truth – William James
The Varieties of Religious Experience – William James
The Ambassadors – Henry James
Thus Spoke Zarathustra – Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
The Genealogy of Morals – Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
Beyond Good and Evil – Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
The Interpretation of Dreams – Sigmund Freud
Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality – Sigmund Freud
Civilization and Its Discontents – Sigmund Freud
Selected Plays and Prefaces – George Bernard Shaw
Nostromo – Joseph Conrad
Uncle Vanya – Anton Chekhov
Three Sisters – Anton Chekhov
The Cherry Orchard – Anton Chekhov
Selected Short Stories – Anton Chekhov
The Custom of the Country – Edith Wharton
The Age of Innocence – Edith Wharton
The House of Mirth – Edith Wharton
Collected Poems – William Butler Yeats
Collected Plays – William Butler Yeats
Autobiography – William Butler Yeats
Kokoro – Natsume Sôseki
Remembrance of Things Past – Marcel Proust
Collected Poems – Robert Frost
The Magic Mountain – Thomas Mann
A Passage to India – E.M. Forster
Collected Short Stories – Lu Hsün
Ulysses – James Joyce
Mrs. Dalloway – Virginia Woolf
To the Lighthouse – Virginia Woolf
Orlando – Virginia Woolf
The Waves – Virginia Woolf
The Trial – Franz Kafka
The Castle – Franz Kafka
Selected Short Stories – Franz Kafka
Sons and Lovers – D.H. Lawrence
Women in Love – D.H. Lawrence
The Makioka Sisters – Junichiro Tanizaki
Mourning Becomes Electra – Eugene O’Neill
The Iceman Cometh – Eugene O’Neill
Long Day’s Journey into Night – Eugene O’Neill
Collected Poems – T.S. Eliot
Collected Plays – T.S. Eliot
Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
The Sound and the Fury – William Faulkner
As I Lay Dying – William Faulkner
Short Stories – Ernest Hemingway
Beauty and Sadness – Yasunari Kawabata
Labyrinths – Jorge Luis Borges
Dreamtigers – Jorge Luis Borges
Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
Pale Fire – Vladimir Nabokov
Speak, Memory – Vladimir Nabokov
Animal Farm – George Orwell
1984 – George Orwell
Burmese Days – George Orwell
The English Teacher – R.K. Narayan
The Vendor of Sweets – R.K. Narayan
Waiting for Godot – Samuel Beckett
Endgame – Samuel Beckett
Krapp’s Last Tape – Samuel Beckett
Collected Poems – W.H. Auden
The Plague – Albert Camus
The Stranger – Albert Camus
The Adventures of Augie March – Saul Bellow
Herzog – Saul Bellow
Humboldt’s Gift – Saul Bellow
The First Circle – Aleksander Solzhenitsyn
Cancer Ward – Aleksander Solzhenitsyn
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions – Thomas Kuhn
Confessions of a Mask – Yukio Mishima
The Temple of the Golden Pavilion – Yukio Mishima
One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
Things Fall Apart – Chinua Achebe

Going Further

Watership Down – Richard Adanms
Lucky Jim – Kingsley Amis
Winesburg, Ohio – Sherwood Anderson
The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
The Rector of Justin – Louis Auchincloss
Collected Stories (1994) – Louis Auchinloss
Giovanni’s Room – James Baldwin
The Fire Next Time – James Baldwin
The Sot-weed Factor – John Barth
Tidewater Tales – John Barth
The Second Sex – Simone De Beauvoir
The Sheltering Sky – Paul Bowles
The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Phillip II – Fernand Braudel
Mother Courage – Berthold Brecht
The Good Woman of Szechuan – Berthold Brecht
The Caucasian Chalk Circle – Berthold Brecht
The Threepenny Opera – Berthold Brecht
The Rise and Fall of the City of Mahogany – Berthold Brecht
So Forth – Joseph Brodsky
The Good Earth – Pearl Buck
The Master and the Margarita – Mikhail Bulgavko
A Clockwork Orange – Anthony Burgess
If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller – Italo Calvino
Other Voices, Other Rooms – Truman Capote
Breakfast at Tiffany’s – Truman Capote
In Cold Blood – Truman Capote
The Sea Around Us – Rachel Carson
Silent Spring – Rachel Carson
My Antonia – Willa Cather
Death Comes for the Archbishop – Willa Cather
Shadows on the Rock – Willa Cather
Collected Stories – John Cheever
The Rebel Angels – Robertson Davies
What’s Bred in the Bone – Robertson Davies
The Lyre of Orpheus – Robertson Davies
Ragtime – E.L. Doctorow
Sister Carrie – Theodore Dreiser
American Tragedy – Theodore Dreiser
The Meaning of Relativity – Albert Einstein
The Invisible Man – Ralph Ellison
This Side of Paradise – F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald
Tender is the Night
The Good Soldier – Ford Maddox Ford
The Recognitions – William Gaddis
J.R. – William Gaddis
Collected Poems – Federico Garcia Lorca
The Lord of the Flies – William Golding
The Spire – William Golding
I, Claudius – Robert Graves
Good-Bye to All That – Robert Graves
The Quiet American – Graham Greene
The Heart of the Matter – Graham Greene
The Good Soldier Schweik – Jaroslav Hasek
Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
The Call – John Hersey
A Bell for Adano – John Hersey
Hiroshima – John Hersey
The Negro Speaks of Rivers – Langston Hughes
Collected Poems – Langston Hughes
The World According to Garp – John Irving
The Berlin Stories – Christopher Isherwood
Christopher and His Kind – Christopher Isherwood
From Here to Eternity – James Jones
Zorba the Greek – Nikos Kazantzakis
On the Road – Jack Kerouac
Rickshaw – Lau Shaw (translation by Jean James)
Collected Poems (1993) – Philip Larkin
The Spy Who Came In From the Cold – John LeCarre
Tristes Tropiques – Claude Levi-Strauss
Structural Anthropology – Claude Levi-Strauss
The Raw and the Cooked: Introduction to a Science of Mythology – Claude Levi-Strauss
Babbitt – Sinclair Lewis
Arrowsmith – Sinclair Lewis
Elmer Gantry – Sinclair Lewis
Dodsworth – Sinclair Lewis
Changing Places – David Lodge
Small World – David Lodge
The Naked and the Dead – Norman Mailer
The Armies of the Night – Norman Mailer
The Executioner’s Song – Norman Mailer
Man’s Fate – Andre Malraux
The Group – Mary McCarthy
The Heart Is a Lonely Hunter – Carson McCullers
Coming of Age in Samoa – Margeret Mead
Death of a Salesman – Arthur Miller
The Crucible – Arthur Miller
Song of Solomon – Toni Morrison
Jazz – Toni Morrison
A Severed Head – Iris Murdoch
Sandcastle – Iris Murdoch
The Man Without Qualities – Robert Musil
Complete Stories (1971) – Flannery O’Connor
Appointment at Samarra – John O’Hara
The Revolt of the Masses – Jose Ortega Y Gassett
Doctor Zhivago – Boris Pasternak
Life, A User’s Manual – Georges Perec
The Caretaker – Harold Pinter
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance – Robert Pirsig
Personae – Ezra Pound
A Dance to the Music of Time – Anthony Powell
This Earth of Mankind – Pramoedya Ananta Tier
Complete Collected Stories – V.S. Pritchett
Excellent Women – Barbara Pym
An Unsuitable Attachment – Barbara Pym
Gravity’s Rainbow – Thomas Pynchon
All Quiet on the Western Front – Erich Maria Remarque
Duino Elegies – Rainer Maria Rilke
Sonnets to Orpheus – Rainer Maria Rilke
Giants in the Earth – Ole Edvart Rolvaag
Goodbye, Columbus – Philip Roth
Portnoy’s Complaint – Philip Roth
Children of the Arbat – Anatoli Rybakov
Catcher in the Rye – J.D. Salinger
Franny and Zooey – J.D. Salinger
Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters, and Seymour – J.D. Salinger
Being and Nothingness – Jean-Paul Sartre
No Exit – Jean-Paul Sartre
Citizens – Simon Schama
Negritude – Leopold Sedar Senghor
Selected Poems – Leopold Sedar Senghor
The Jungle – Upton Sinclair
Gimpel the Fool and Other Stories – Isaac Bashevis Singer
The Magician of Lublin – Isaac Bashevis Singer
The Interpreters – Woke Soyinka
Death and the King’s Horsemen – Woke Soyinka
The Big Rock Candy Mountain – Wallace Stegner
Angle of Repose – Wallace Stegner
Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
The Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
Harmonium – Wallace Stevens
Collected Poems – Wallace Stevens
Eminent Victorians – Lytton Strachey
Queen Victoria – Lytton Strachey
Is Sex Necessary – James Thurber
My Life and Hard Times – James Thurber
The Hobbit – J.R.R Tolkien
The Lord of the Rings – J.R.R. Tolkien
Collected Stories – William Trevor
Rabbit, Run – John Updike
Rabbit Redux – John Updike
Rabbit is Rich – John Updike
Rabbit at Rest – John Updike
Myra Breckenridge – Gore Vidal
Burr – Gore Vidal
Omeros – Derek Walcot
Collected Stories – Derek Walcot
Ti-Jean and His Brothers – Derek Walcot
The Double Helix – James D. Watson
Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
The Loved One – Evelyn Waugh
Collected Stories – Eudora Welty
Black Lamb and Greg Falcon – Rebecca West
Voss – Patrick White
Riders in the Chariot – Patrick White
Our Town – Thornton Wilder
The Bridge of San Luis Rey – Thornton Wilder
The Glass Menagerie – Tennessee Williams
A Streetcar Named Desire – Tennessee Williams
Collected Poems, Volume I – William Carlos Williams
Collected Poems, Volume II – William Carlos Williams
Native Son – Richard Wright
Black Boy – Richard Wright


Check the archive if you are interested in other reading projects I’m working on. Also, I’ve recently posted my 2018 Reading Stats and 2018 Blog Stats.

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I'm an avid reader and love most all books, but my favorite genres tend to be mystery, adventure, science fiction and classics. Genres I tend to shy away from include romance, contemporary fiction and chick lit. If I’m not actually reading books, I’m probably at work shelving them at my local library.

2 Comments

  • Jillian

    I just have to tell you: your blog is completely beautiful. I’m guessing you put a lot of work into it. In case no one has mentioned it, my it is lovely. The aesthetic makes me want to read. x

    Lots of great books above! I like that they include a sampling of some world lit and female voices. I kind of wonder what this list will look like 500 years from now, & if any of our own writing (meaning our generation) will be included. 🙂

    • Books In Bloom

      Thank you soo much for the compliment. I too wonder which books of today would be considered “world-changing” or essential to ready. 🙂 Thanks for coming by.

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