Books to Read Before I Die 2010 Challenge

by Madeleine Rex

Books to Read Before I Die 2010 Challenge

Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea has come up with a brilliant challenge to ensure that we actually read the books we want to read before we die! (Click the picture for her post.) I’ve found that I’m collecting a pile (increasing in size every few months) of books that I want to read… but I’m not reading. Most of these are books like my collection of Leo Tolstoy’s works – which weighs as much as a blue whale and has text the size of an ant infant. Despite these discouraging factors, I’m certain I want to read the collection before I die – and, as books like it could take me an entire lifetime to read, and every moment I’m inching closer to that deadline – death, I’m fairly certain the best rational time to read books like that Leo Tolstoy collection would be as soon as humanly possible.

Diane’s challenge is perfect. It will keep me honest and true – and reading. Here are the guidelines (quoted from her site):

  • Between now and December 31, 2009, make a list of either 10 to 20 Books to Read Before You Die. (depending on interest, this may be an annual event challenge).
  • The books on your list can come from your stacks or the library, and be in print or audio format.
  • Next, make a tentative list and post it on your blog. Finalize your titles by December 31, 2009. (No changes to the list after that date).
  • Once you’ve created your post with tentative titles, THEN sign up using Mr. Linky, by pasting the link to your post, along with your name/blog name. This is how you will be registered.
  • All bloggers who complete the challenge will be entered in giveaway to win an Amazon Gift Card.
  •  Questions/comments, please feel free to comment or email me.
  • I’m determined to remain determined. I will read these books:

    Wow! That list seems never-ending! Let us hope I can make it through! I’ll need to reward myself somehow when I finish the few of those that are more than 1,000 pages long – two new books, perhaps?


    14 Commentsto “Books to Read Before I Die 2010 Challenge”

    1. Wow…I admire you tackling Tolstoy head on. We have a couple of the same reads, so I look forward to reading your reviews. You will definitely deserve to reward yourself…but I say maybe a few new books instead of a couple:)

      • I'll be heading over to your blog to check out your list! I felt like that giant (my dad says it weighs about 5 pounds-it's got all three of the Tolstoy books listed above combined) Tolstoy collection was mocking me, sitting there on my desk, screaming, "You wimp. Your wrists would break just holding me." Needless to say, I thought it was about time to prove it wrong… although I do pity my poor wrists.

    2. madeline, thanks for joining in. Boy you have some heavy-hitters planned. i hope you enjoy the books and the challenge.

    3. i love tolstoy and dostoevsky both. not to overwhelm you with russian lit, but brothers karamazov is one of dostoevsky's best.

    4. I've read 4 of these – Anna Karenina and The Count of Monte Cristo are my favorites. My list will get put together sometime this week. Good luck with the challenge…you've got some huge books there!

    5. I sympathize with your wrists:) I recently bought a complete edition of Doyle's Sherlock Holmes and realized I may have to check out the individual books to read because the book is so unweildy and I won't be able to read it when out and about. I have to second the above comment on Brothers Karamazov. If you haven't read it, it is one to consider after Crime and Punishment.

      • Sherlock Homes is also on my To Be Read List. Luckily, a family friend has a few (I tend to visit and stare at their bookshelves), and I may be able to borrow their copies!

    6. I want to join this challenge..once I've finished my current mammoth read I shall.

      I have read all of the big Russian novels on your list and also the Dickens and Lord of the Rings. They are all excellent, though War and Peace I found a bit of a let down.

      Personally I think The Brothers Karamazov is better than Crime and Punishment too.

      Good luck with the challenge! It's always very satisfying when you can say 'oh yes, of course I've read that' when people mention the Big Guns such as Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, etc. Vain but true!

      • Yes, certainly vain, but true! I have a girl who sits next to me in LA (Language Arts) who's continually asking me whether I've read this or that. Most of the time, I haven't. I've read many classics, but I still haven't made much head-way. I have a feeling I've read more of the moderns, though. (Later, I found out she'd been reading for years longer than I had, and all was revealed.) I hadn't heard of Brothers Karamazov until the bunch of you began recommending it. I'll check it out!

    7. Great list-I have read all of the works you list but "The Cossacks"- I also liked Tolstoy's last novel
      "Resurrection" a lot-it is easy to follow as it focuses only on two characters. It is Tolstoy's harshest attack on Russian society. Maybe it is his third best novel but look at where number one and two are on the list of world's highest regarded novels and you will see that is not a bad comment!- I will be curious to see if you have any thoughts on the old issue of Tolstoy versus Dostoevsky.

      • We'll see! I'm sure I'll get a word in, now that I realize everyone has an opinion on that feud. It's odd… my blog sent your comment to the "SPAM" section. No worries (obviously)-I rescued it! Thanks for visiting!

    8. Good luck! You have some big books on there.

    9. I look foward to your reviews of these. What a great list! I am still trying to decide which books to add to my list.

    10. I read The Count of M.C. last month — LOVED IT! I read in some reviews that the unabridged version (Penguin Classic 1,243 pages) was the best. So, I did. Would read it again soon, if it wasn't so long.

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