Top Ten Tuesday: All Time Favourite Books

Top Ten Tuesday

The Top Ten Tuesday meme brought to your screens by The Broke and the Bookish :)


All time favourite books? Why not ask me to choose a favourite song, or a favourite tree, or a favourite flower, or a favourite colour, or a favourite food, or a favourite star?

Also, my life is not over. It is not even close to being over (I hope), so by definition, this list cannot be my all time favourite books, since there is a whole lot of time I haven’t lived yet. (Which still assumes that the “all time” of this list is my all time. Which might not be; that is a very self-centred perspective. Although the prospect of choosing a universal all time favourite? From all quadrants of the globe? From all of history? The mind boggles. Impossible.)

Also, the thing about reading is that  I am forever discovering new books to love. Which makes choosing an overall favourite impossible; there are books I love now and books I loved five years ago, but just because the books I loved five years ago aren’t necessarily the books I love now does not mean that either is better or worse or more or less permanent.

Also, if you have been following this blog at all, you probably already know nearly exactly what books I am likely to list here. Sometimes I feel that I am shouting the same names from the rooftops, because I love them so much.

Which is to say I cannot choose my all-time favourite books.


I’m with Janet. I will continue to discover all time favourite books as I continue to read for the rest of my life.

But, as we all can’t get away with a treatise on the preposterousness of the term “all time favourites” I’ll list some books that won’t be leaving the list anytime soon.

  1. The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien. For reasons I’ve talked about before and will again.
  2. 1984 by George Orwell.
  3. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness.
  4. Harry Potter and the Prison of Azkaban by the indomitable J.K.
  5. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by the fabulous storyteller Neil Gaiman.
  6. Word Nerd and Henry K. Larsen by Susin Nielsen – I’m too torn to pick one.
  7. Unwind by Neal Shusterman.
  8. Otherland by Tad Williams.
  9. Interview with the Vampire by Anne Rice.
  10. The Shining by Stephen King.

I could go on… I didn’t even get to picturebooks or Middle Grade! OOOH! E.L. Konisburg’s From the Mixed up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler! Oh, and I’m cheating because I can see Nafiza’s list.. I like Nafiza’s list too… oh the unfairness of favourites…


My list could go on forever. The degrees of like I have for the books all varying and for different reasons. But since this is not the time to go into huge detail or any detail about them, here are the titles alone:

  1. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe – Benjamin Alire Saenz
  2. Among Others – Jo Walton
  3. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle – Haruki Murakami
  4. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part Time Indian – Sherman Alexie
  5. Small Damages – Beth Kephart
  6. Alif the Unseen – G. Willow Wilson
  7. Howl’s Moving Castle – Diana Wynne Jones
  8. Shoot! – George Bowering
  9. The History of Love – Nicole Krauss
  10. Anne of Green Gables – L. M. Montgomery
  11. Rosencrantz and Guildenstern Are Dead – Tom Stoppard
  12. my name on his tongue: poems – Laila Halaby
  13. The Spiritwalker Trilogy – Kate Elliott
  14. A Concise Chinese-English Dictionary for Lovers – Xiaolu Guo

…….and on and on…


I have a “faves” folder on Goodreads, can I just link you guys to that? Yeah, I’m just gonna do that. Feel free to leave your own lists in the comments!

3 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday: All Time Favourite Books

  1. Ha! Nice gif response, Yash! Very appropriate. I agree, a ‘Top Ten All Time Favourite Books’ list is impossible. However, a ‘Top Ten Books That Knocked Me On My Ass Super Hard’ list is easier and is as follows:
    Jose Saramago – All The Names
    Jorge Luis Borges – Collected Fictions
    Jane Austen – Northanger Abbey
    John Kennedy Toole – A Confederacy of Dunces
    Zora Neale Hurston – Their Eyes Were Watching God
    Thomas Pynchon – Gravity’s Rainbow
    William Faulkner – The Wild Palms
    Toni Morrison – Beloved
    George Saunders – Tenth of December (I know, more short stories)
    Sylvia Plath – The Bell Jar
    Jeez….I haven’t even hit submit yet, and I am already feeling guilty for leaving certain books off of this list.

    • I’ve only read one of those. *shamefaced* Though my mom and I did recently read (and enjoyed) Saramago’s The Elephant’s Journey. Oh no wait, I have also read Northanger Abbey though my favourite is Persuasion. (I also read The Bell Jar but I reckon I’m due a reread on that one.)

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