Dr. Peter Boxall's "1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die (2006 edition)"

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Each work of literature listed here is a seminal work key to understanding and appreciating the written word. These works have been handpicked by a team of international critics and literary luminaries, including Derek Attridge (world expert on James Joyce), Cedric Watts (renowned authority on Joseph Conrad and Graham Greene), Laura Marcus (noted Virginia Woolf expert), and David Mariott (poet and expert on African-American literature), among some twenty others. (Description from Amazon.com)

This is a community list. You can contribute, edit, or help maintain it by adding it to your lists. Please do not remove or add titles that will change this list from how it appears in 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die edited by Peter Boxall with an introduction by Peter Ackroyd.

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  1. 1.
    Never Let Me Go
    by Kazuo Ishiguro

  2. 2.
    by Ian McEwan

  3. 3.
    On Beauty
    by Zadie Smith

  4. 4.
    Slow Man
    by J.M. Coetzee

  5. 5.
    Adjunct: An Undigest
    by Peter Manson

  6. 6.
    The Sea
    by John Banville

  7. 7.
    The Red Queen
    by Margaret Drabble

  8. 8.
    The Plot Against America
    by Philip Roth

  9. 9.
    The Master: A Novel
    by Colm Toibin

  10. 10.
    Vanishing Point: A Novel
    by David Markson

  11. 11.
    The Lambs of London
    by Peter Ackroyd

  12. 12.
    Dining on Stones
    by Iain Sinclair

  13. 13.
    Cloud Atlas: A Novel
    by David Mitchell

  14. 14.
    Drop City
    by T.C. Boyle

  15. 15.
    The Colour: A Novel
    by Rose Tremain

  16. 16.
    by Alan Garner

  17. 17.
    The Light of Day
    by Graham Swift

  18. 18.
    The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
    by Mark Haddon

  19. 19.
    What I Loved: A Novel
    by Siri Hustvedt

  20. 20.
    by Dan Sleigh

  21. 21.
    Elizabeth Costello
    by J. M. Coetzee

  22. 22.
    London Orbital: A Walk Around the M25
    by Iain Sinclair

  23. 23.
    Family Matters
    by Rohinton Mistry

  24. 24.
    by Sarah Waters

  25. 25.
    The Double
    by Jose Saramago

  26. 26.
    Everything Is Illuminated: A Novel
    by Jonathan Safran Foer

  27. 27.
    Unless: A Novel
    by Carol Shields

  28. 28.
    Kafka on the Shore
    by Haruki Murakami

  29. 29.
    The Story of Lucy Gault: A Novel
    by William Trevor

  30. 30.
    That They May Face the Rising Sun (Great Irish Writers)
    by John McGahern

  31. 31.
    In the Forest: A Novel
    by Edna O'Brien

  32. 32.
    by John Banville

  33. 33.
    Middlesex: A Novel
    by Jeffrey Eugenides

  34. 34.
    Youth: Scenes from Provincial Life II
    by J. M. Coetzee

  35. 35.
    Dead Air
    by Iain Banks

  36. 36.
    Nowhere Man
    by Aleksandar Hemon

  37. 37.
    The Book of Illusions: A Novel
    by Paul Auster

  38. 38.
    Gabriel's Gift: A Novel
    by Hanif Kureishi

  39. 39.
    Austerlitz (Modern Library Paperbacks)
    by Winfried Georg Sebald

  40. 40.
    by Michel Houellebecq

  41. 41.
    by Heather McGowan

  42. 42.
    Atonement: A Novel
    by Ian McEwan

  43. 43.
    The Corrections
    by Jonathan Franzen

  44. 44.
    Don't Move
    by Margaret Mazzantini

  45. 45.
    The Body Artist: A Novel
    by Don DeLillo

  46. 46.
    Fury: A Novel (Modern Library)
    by Salman Rushdie

  47. 47.
    At Swim, Two Boys: A Novel
    by Jamie O'Neill

  48. 48.
    by Chuck Palahniuk

  49. 49.
    Life of Pi
    by Yann Martel

  50. 50.
    The Feast of the Goat: A Novel
    by Mario Vargas Llosa

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This is a community list. You can contribute, edit, or help maintain it by adding it to your lists.
Created by starlagurl on Mar 27, 2006.


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Untitled — 21 weeks ago

I read this book about this animal removal in Orlando that was crazy!! I finished it so quickly because I never wanted to put it down.

Hello dear, — 1 year ago

Hello dear,

Past is Experience! Present is Experiment! Future is Expectation!

Use your Experience in your experiment to achieve your expectations!

My name miss Amarilla ,i am 24 years old girl,

You can contact me with my e-mail (amarilla.adura01@yahoo.co.uk)

I’ll give you my picture and tell you more about myself.

Amarilla kiss you.

Have a good day.


from 18 to 19% — 1 year ago

Just finished What I Loved – one of the best books I’ve ever read and pushed me from 18 to 19%. As well as working on this list, I’m trying to read the Orange Prize list.

15% — 1 year ago

I’m currently concentrating on the 2000s portion of this list (the first 69 books). I thought it might be less daunting to try small chunks of the list at a time.

#537 - Gormenghast — 1 year ago

I think I have fixed this in the past, but it needed fixed again. Replaced The Gormenghast Trilogy entry with the 2nd book of the series, called Gormenghast.

18% — 1 year ago

very much enjoying this list – Hallucinating Foucault put me over into 18% – really excellent. also reading all of ian mcewan and willa cather now thanks to this list. great way to meet new authors.

Banana Yoshimoto- Kitchen — 1 year ago

Removed this book because although it’s on the 2008 list it’s not on the 2006. Only noticed it because the list had become 1002, yes it’s a good book but it’s not on the list.

Wow! — 2 years ago

Excited to add to my list. So many wonderful books out there.

changed list?! — 2 years ago

whoa! who changed the list?! again?! some of the books are now on here twice, some I had marked as read were unmarked – what the heck?

1% — 2 years ago

I’ve been working on this list (as well as the BBC Top 200) since March. So far I’ve really enjoyed the books I’ve read, especially Lord of the Rings, A Town Like Alice, and Jane Eyre. I’m currently working on Cryptonomicon and The Secret History.

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