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#1 Posted by Feanor (1387 posts) -

So what are your 3 favorite books of all time? Mine are as follows.

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger

3. The Son Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

Honorable mention would probably be Finnegans Wake by James Joyce, that books is utterly insane.

#2 Posted by Bait003 (36 posts) -

R.A. Salvatore's Icewind Dale Trilogy but also Armour by John Steakley. Armour holds it's own against all of the Icewind Dale.

#3 Posted by TaliciaDragonsong (8698 posts) -

Can I name a trilogy (double one actually)? I'd be done too fast otherwise.
 
1) Dragon Prince/Star by Melanie Rawn
Six great fucking books that deserve to be made into a movie/series/game.
 
2) Millennium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson
Realistic and complex.
 
3) Meer dan alle modermismen by Kees van Kooten
Dutch book, but the way that man enslaves the language and makes it his bitch in his amazing stories is godly, I had a hard time thinking which book of his I would use here, they all rock.

#4 Posted by DillonWerner (1526 posts) -
  1. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
  2. The Plague/The Stranger - Albert Camus
  3. Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess
#5 Posted by kyokushin_nanaya (40 posts) -
  1. Dune - Frank Herbert
  2. Game of Thrones - George R.R Martin
  3. Takeshi Kovacs Series - Richard Morgan
#6 Posted by Tim_the_Corsair (3065 posts) -

1. The Wheel of Time by Robert Jordan (and Brandon Sanderson)

2. Soul Hunter, Blood Reaver, Void Stalker by Aaron Dembski-Bowden

3. ...I'm struggling to pick from so many choices, that I'm just going to say Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card as I was talking with my wife about it earlier, and its a great, significant book.

#7 Posted by Feanor (1387 posts) -

@Tim_the_Corsair: I've heard good things about The Wheel of Time series, I plan on picking it up after i finish the Song of Ice and Fire books. And I agree Ender's Game is amazing, hopefully the movie they're making will do it justice.

#8 Posted by casper_ (901 posts) -

louis ferdinand celine- journey to the end of the night

some/any collection of borges short stories (they all have the same ones in them)

and maybe vonnegut - slaughterhouse five or cats cradle

#9 Posted by Nigglenummy (78 posts) -

1) Speaker for the Dead - Orson Scott Card

2) Faith of the Fallen - Terry Goodkind

3) tie The Shadow Rising - Robert Jordan / Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card

#10 Posted by ThePickle (4155 posts) -
  1. Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut
  2. Naked Lunch by William S. Burroughs
  3. The Man in the High Castle by Philip K. Dick. (or maybe A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess).

#11 Posted by jonnyboy (2920 posts) -

At the moment I'm re-reading:

'Notes from a Big Country' - Bill Bryson

'Dracula' - Bram Stoker

'Masters of Doom' - David Kushner

#12 Posted by TheSouthernDandy (3803 posts) -

Watership Down - Richard Adams (yeah its about talking rabbits...what?)

Lord of The Rings - J.R.R. Tolkien (yeah obvious pick. shut up I love it)

The Thrawn Trilogy - Timothy Zahn (still the best Star Wars novels. shut up Jeff)

#13 Posted by EquitasInvictus (2008 posts) -

1) Ender's Game - Orson Scott Card

2) Les Misérables - Victor Hugo

3) The Odyssey - Homer

@Nigglenummy: I know Ender's Game spawned a bunch of a sequels, but what about Speaker of the Dead in particular makes it stand out? Considering how many sequel/spin-offs Ender's Game had I wouldn't know where to start reading next to follow up Ender's Game itself.

#14 Edited by MightyDuck (1509 posts) -

@TheSouthernDandy: I fully agree with you on the Thrawn Trilogy. I ready that quite a while ago, but it still stands out as an awesome trilogy.

As I've gotten older, I found myself having more difficulty being interested in Fiction writing. I've sort of run off into the world of auto-biographies for the time being.

  1. Devil's Arithmetic - read this book in grade school actually, really enjoyed it then and still have a copy now as an adult
  2. To Kill a Mockingbird - one of my favorites
  3. Kerry Fraser: The Final Call - I've been a huge hockey fan my entire life, and Fraser's stories as a referee in the league was a great and enjoyable read.
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#15 Posted by EquitasInvictus (2008 posts) -

@TheSouthernDandy said:

Watership Down - Richard Adams (yeah its about talking rabbits...what?)

George Orwell's Animal Farm isn't far off from that and it's still definitely among my top books, even though I haven't listed it on my top 3 specifically! I'd definitely recommend both Watership Down and Animal Farm!

#16 Edited by MariachiMacabre (7056 posts) -

@Feanor said:

So what are your 3 favorite books of all time? Mine are as follows.

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger

3. The Son Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway

Honorable mention would probably be Finnegans Wake by James Joyce, that books is utterly insane.

You've got some damn fine taste, my friend.

My three are as follows (and I honestly find this to be a really, really hard question):

1) The Old Man and the Sea by Ernest Hemingway (Easily my favorite author)

2) The Pit and The Pendulum by Edgar Allen Poe (technically a short story but it's too good not to add)

3) The Millenium Trilogy (Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, etc.) by Steig Larsson

Honorable Mentions: Watchmen, The Dark Knight Returns, Of Mice and Men and The Casque of Amontillado.

#17 Posted by Tim_the_Corsair (3065 posts) -
@Feanor Wheel of Time is amazing and Jordan was a fantastic writer (and a personal hero, inspired me to write)

Just need to keep in mind that, like GRRM, the books lose pace and become more and more convoluted due to the large number of characters spreading out across the world.

Now while some books in the series are more significant than others, I disagree with those people who felt the quality was dipping...but if the idea of what begins fairly frenetically and action-packed becoming more political and wide-reaching bothers you, you may not enjoy Wheel of Time.

Also, Jordan died before completing the final book. His work was taken over at his widow (and editor) Harriet's request by Brandon Sanderson, who is a phenomenal fantasy author in his own right (read Mistborn, it's a great trilogy). Sanderson has written the first two volumes of the final book (it was split in three for size reasons) using Jordan's notes and what work he had completed.

You can tell that it isn't the same author, and some people have taken issue with that, but overall I think his worth is worthy of Jordan's legacy, and I am eagerly awaiting the final book at the beginning of next year.
#18 Posted by Doctorchimp (4070 posts) -

Gravity's Rainbow

The Hobbit

Slaughterhouse-Five

#19 Posted by Feanor (1387 posts) -

@MariachiMacabre: Hemingway is also my favorite autor, and probably my idol. If I had made this a top 10 list he would've held 5 spots. The Old Man and the sea would probably be my second favorite of his. I've never read a book that said so much with so few words.

@Tim_the_Corsair: I'm really starting to feel it with the Song of Ice and Fire books. I'm only 100 pages from finishing A Feast of Crows, but I'm really starting to feel burned out.

I did have a few reservations of starting the Wheel of Time series, knowing that Jordan died before it was completed. I was afraid I'd read it, enjoy it, become invested, then disappointed because there was no closure. But the info you've given has alleviated that fear.

#20 Posted by MariachiMacabre (7056 posts) -

@Feanor said:

@MariachiMacabre: Hemingway is also my favorite autor, and probably my idol. If I had made this a top 10 list he would've held 5 spots. The Old Man and the sea would probably be my second favorite of his. I've never read a book that said so much with so few words.

@Tim_the_Corsair: I'm really starting to feel it with the Song of Ice and Fire books. I'm only 100 pages from finishing A Feast of Crows, but I'm really starting to feel burned out.

I did have a few reservations of starting the Wheel of Time series, knowing that Jordan died before it was completed. I was afraid I'd read it, enjoy it, become invested, then disappointed because there was no closure. But the info you've given has alleviated that fear.

I'm sure I'm far from the only person to do this, but this is the reason I don't go from one book in a series to the next. It hurts the experience. It's always important for me to have a palate cleanser of sorts. Often times I take a year off from a series so the writing style feels fresh again.

#21 Edited by wemibelec90 (1563 posts) -

I don't do listed favorites as I'm way too indecisive to pick things like that. Some honorable mentions for me would be the His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman, The Stand by Stephen King, Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith, and Ender's Game.

#22 Posted by Feanor (1387 posts) -

@MariachiMacabre: I usually do the same, but they were such quick reads that I started to eat them up. I'll probably just power through the last of A Feast for Crows, and take a good long break before I start A Dance with Dragons.

#23 Posted by Claude (16254 posts) -
   
#24 Posted by colubroid (39 posts) -

The Name of the Rose - Umberto Eco

Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman (much better than the TV series that came first)

A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens

#25 Posted by Tim_the_Corsair (3065 posts) -
@MariachiMacabre

@Feanor said:

@MariachiMacabre: Hemingway is also my favorite autor, and probably my idol. If I had made this a top 10 list he would've held 5 spots. The Old Man and the sea would probably be my second favorite of his. I've never read a book that said so much with so few words.

@Tim_the_Corsair: I'm really starting to feel it with the Song of Ice and Fire books. I'm only 100 pages from finishing A Feast of Crows, but I'm really starting to feel burned out.

I did have a few reservations of starting the Wheel of Time series, knowing that Jordan died before it was completed. I was afraid I'd read it, enjoy it, become invested, then disappointed because there was no closure. But the info you've given has alleviated that fear.

I'm sure I'm far from the only person to do this, but this is the reason I don't go from one book in a series to the next. It hurts the experience. It's always important for me to have a palate cleanser of sorts. Often times I take a year off from a series so the writing style feels fresh again.

I agree with the palate cleanser idea; it's why reading Wheel of Time as it came out has been great for me, as it enforces this...although I've read every book in that series over twenty times at least, so it obviously doesn't bother me haha (I should point out that these are often speed reads or out of order, as Jordan's work, amongst others, acts as a textbook of sorts for my own writing)

I'm changing my 3) to the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher, now that I think about it.
#26 Posted by Tim_the_Corsair (3065 posts) -
@Feanor

@MariachiMacabre: I usually do the same, but they were such quick reads that I started to eat them up. I'll probably just power through the last of A Feast for Crows, and take a good long break before I start A Dance with Dragons.

If it helps, I'm currently reading Dance and it is substantially better than Feast.

Because fuck Cersei Lannister and the POV she rode in on
#27 Edited by pweidman (2307 posts) -

Very tough to name just 3, but 3 of my fav stories and authors I guess would have to be:

1. For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

2. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry

3. Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier

#28 Posted by Tennmuerti (8013 posts) -

Hmmmm kind of hard to pick. I got several favorite authors and several favorite book series, never mind single books. :/

  • Dune trilogy - Frank Herbert (duh)
  • Excession - by Iain M. Banks, a recent addition to my personal hall of fame, all his stuff is top notch, but fuck this book was amazing
  • Song of Ice and Fire series - boy do i love/hate George Martin, fuck that guy, seriously
  • Faith of the Fallen - has already been mentioned in this thread, and it is interestingly enough the highest point of Terry Goodkind's writing and also sadly the last good book of his imo
  • Reality Dysfunction - of the Night's Dawn trilogy - by Peter F. Hamilton
  • Labyrinth of Reflections - by Sergey Lukyanenko a Russian author (obviously in native Russian), before he got famous for his Watch series (Дозор), while i love the Day/Night/Twilight Watch trilogy, this previous work of his is a true gem, with certain "colorful" expressions I use to this day (also all his book titles sound kind of goofy in English, but in Russian they are totally bad-ass)
  • Greater Foundation series - by Isaac Asimov, the connected books are while by themselves quite great, together form quite an amazing tapestry and to this day remain the cornerstone of literary treatment of AI issues

I just can't pick only 3, tried to cut it down but not possible.

Don't like R.A. Salvatore at all, could not get into the Wheel of Time series, LoTR has aged very poorly, and i have a deep distaste for Arthur C. Clarke

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#29 Posted by Jay444111 (2441 posts) -

Alrighty! This is my kind of topic! Here goes.

1. Swan Song By Robert R MCcammon. This book... is fucking amazing. Imagine every best moment in every post apocalyptic moment ever, some Shin Megami Tensei stuff... sure it isn't exactly like SMT but their are similarities. Quite possibly the best novel I have ever read. I am not joking people, this novel kicks so much ass that your eyes will bleed blood as you get through everything! It inspired FALLOUT SERIES!!! Read it and love it! It has over 500, five star reviews on amazon and is constantly in a war with Stephen Kings The Stand for best Post Apocalyptic book of all time... Swan Song severely beats The Stand to death.

2. Fahrenheit 451 By Ray Bradbury. RIP Mr Bradbury because you will be missed in this world! This book is fucking awesome and you should read it... hell, I am such a fan of it I got the official comic book to go beside it. (Which is also pretty damn good. Don't worry Ray authorized it.) The book is better, but the comic is still awesome.

3. The Dark Tower series in general by Stephen King. Read them! They kick ass and one of the few fantasy stories which are readable and actually is pretty damn awesome! Please... some video game developer out there. Please read this and know to make a Dark Tower video game which would be amazing!

#30 Posted by selbie (1847 posts) -

In no particular order:

1. Grapes of Wrath

2. Dune

3. 2001: A Space Odyssey

Honorable mentions: Small Gods (Terry Pratchett), LOTR, Foundation (Isaac Asimov).

#31 Posted by JoeyRavn (4949 posts) -

Are we talking strictly about about novels here? Because if not, I have read a metric shitload of English Renaissance and 17th Century works that are my all time favorites: Dr. Faustus by Christopher Marlowe, Henry V by William Shakespeare, all of Donne's metaphysical poetry, Paradise Lost by John Milton... And what about Chaucer back in the 14th Century? I absolutely adore Geoffrey Chaucer. That's the problem of having a mostly-classical education. My knowledge of literature after the 17th Century is rather lacking.

But just novels, that's harder. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is among my contemporary favorites. The Magus by John Fowles is amazing, too. And even though it's drama, Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller is one of the pieces of literature that has impacted the most on my life. I couldn't put them in a top 3, though. All of these works have changed my life in different ways. It wouldn't be fair to say that I like one more than the rest.

Also, yeah. All the links I included are totally random. I can't believe we have a concept page for the "death of a salesman", though.

#32 Posted by Nigglenummy (78 posts) -

@EquitasInvictus said:

@Nigglenummy: I know Ender's Game spawned a bunch of a sequels, but what about Speaker of the Dead in particular makes it stand out? Considering how many sequel/spin-offs Ender's Game had I wouldn't know where to start reading next to follow up Ender's Game itself.

Speaker for the Dead was the first sequel to Ender's Game. It takes place like 20 years later. It's a pretty big shift from the military intensity of Ender's Game and focuses more on the development of Ender's character and his relationship with a new species. It's very emotionally engaging and has a more intricate plot (i think) but it's missing the tactical action and suspense from the first. It definitely has more interesting characters. Both books are great though.

There are four books in the original Ender "quartet", and an additional one in 2008 made it five chronological books that directly follow Ender as a main character. Check out the series page on wikipedia.

#33 Posted by Dunchad (474 posts) -

Bunch of people with good taste in this thread - I see mentions of Orson Scott Card, Heinlein, Gaiman, Jordan... All superb authors that have written tons of good books.

I'll name a few of my favourites that haven't been mentioned yet as far as I could see.

  • Farseer Trilogy & Tawny Man Trilogy - Robin Hobb
  • Magician - Raymond E. Feist
  • Hyperion - Dan Simmons

Could've also included Catch-22 from Joseph Heller, both books that Patrick Rothfuss has written, few books from Terry Pratchett... ahh, there're so many good books. For a more lighthearted romp, I keep reading Dresden books from Jim Butcher and Nightside books from Simon R. Green - they're great fun as well.

#34 Posted by CaLe (3916 posts) -

1. Altered Carbon (Richard Morgan)

2. Kokoro (Natsume Sōseki)

3. Underground: The Tokyo Gas Attack and the Japanese Psyche (Haruki Murakami)

#35 Posted by GunnBjorn (2911 posts) -

1. The Gulag Archipelago - Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

2. The Idiot - Fyodor Dostoyevsky

3. The Fatal Eggs - Mikhail Bulgakov

Yes, I have a soft spot for Russian authors. I do not speak Russian, apart from a few words and sentences. These books were all translated in my native language, which is Dutch.

#36 Posted by Nick (656 posts) -

grrrr this is so hard!!! ok well here's a few of my fav's

1. The Passion - Jeanette Winterson

2. A Princess of Mars - Edgar Rice Burroughs

3. The Passage - Justin Cronin

#37 Posted by Icemael (6312 posts) -
Dracula by Bram Stoker, Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley and Thus Spoke Zarathustra: A Book for All and None by Friedrich Nietzsche.
#38 Posted by Levius (1084 posts) -

Allowing non-fiction books:

  1. The Battle for Spain - Anthony Beevor
  2. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
  3. Night Watch - Terry Pratchett
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#39 Posted by RedCream (704 posts) -

1. Master of the Game- Sidney Sheldon

2. Tristan Betrayal- Robert Ludlum

3. Perks of Being a Wallflower- Stephen Chobsky

#40 Edited by Ashcrack1087 (45 posts) -

Delver Magic Book series

A Malazan Book of the Fallen series

The Wheel of Time series

Yeah.. I'm kind of a Series Reader

#41 Posted by ninnanuam (267 posts) -

Novels only, no particular order:

The Long Dark Tea Time Of the Soul, Douglas Adams (everything by Adam's is great but I like this the most, I probably read it during an impressionable period)

Good Omens, Pratchett/Gaiman, for personal reasons

After that it's all the same nothing stands out:

Catch 22, Hi fidelity, LOTR, Snow Crash..

Non fiction:

Fear and Loathing on the Campaign Trail 72, Thompson

A brief History of Nearly Everything, Bryson

Charlie Browns encyclopedia set, They are the first thing I remember reading.

#42 Posted by Sweep (8827 posts) -
  1. The Beach - Alex Garland
  2. Fear & Loathing In Las Vegas - Hunter S. Thompson
  3. Nightwatch - Terry Pratchett

Honourable mentions to The Name Of The Wind by Patrick Rothfuss, and J-Pod by Douglas Coupland. I have read the beach about 25 times. I met Alex Garland a bunch of times, and he's a pretty down to earth kinda guy, too.

Moderator Online
#43 Posted by ToastMan (91 posts) -

1. The Dark Tower series

2. Speaker for the Dead. (Anyone who read and liked Ender's Game *NEEDS* to read Speaker!)

3. Song of Ice and Fire series

#44 Posted by SlightConfuse (3963 posts) -
@Feanor

@Tim_the_Corsair: I've heard good things about The Wheel of Time series, I plan on picking it up after i finish the Song of Ice and Fire books. And I agree Ender's Game is amazing, hopefully the movie they're making will do it justice.

Wheel of time is one of my favorite series ever . My suggestion would be to skip some of the middle books as the plots come to a halt.

#45 Posted by supamon (1333 posts) -

My taste is probably not as refined as you guys nor as exposed but here goes:

Dune series - Frank Herbert

Night Watch - Terry Pratchett

American Gods/Neverwhere - Neil Gaiman

Honorable mentions: A Song of Ice & Fire series by George R. R. Martin and The First Heretic by Aaron Dembski Bowden in The Horus Heresy series

#46 Posted by lord_python (96 posts) -

I can't choose three, but I've got one. To Kill a Mockinbird, one of my childhood favorites with a father figure I wish I had.

#47 Posted by stryker1121 (1356 posts) -

@Tim_the_Corsair: I've heard some of the later Wheel of Time books are really tedious to get through. If you're looking for some good dark fantasy stuff Joe Abercrombie's "First Law" trilogy is quite good. He also has 2 other novels set in the "First Law" Universe. I just finished "The Heroes" and it's Abercrombie's best novel so far.

#48 Posted by Zenogiasu (192 posts) -
  1. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
  2. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
  3. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
#49 Posted by mosespippy (4051 posts) -

My top three are:

  • Life of Pi by Yann Martel
  • JPod by Douglas Coupland
  • Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger

@lord_python: @MightyDuck: Could either of you explain the appeal of To Kill A Mockingbird to me? I borrowed it from my sister and returned it after reading maybe five or six chapters.

#50 Posted by The_Hiro_Abides (1256 posts) -

1) Neuromancer by William Gibson

2) Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

3) Slaughterhouse-five by Kurt Vonnegut

Pulpy cyberpunk will always have a place in my heart. Plus I have to punch some deck!