Author Topic: The greatest British and American books  (Read 1373 times)

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Offline Vladik

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The greatest British and American books
« on: January 23, 2012, 02:10:53 AM »
I'd like to read them. Could you be so kind to share?

Offline Shiny

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #1 on: January 23, 2012, 02:13:58 AM »
Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand.

Wait are you serious?
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Offline Vladik

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #2 on: January 23, 2012, 03:07:15 AM »
???

Wait are you serious?

without a doubt ;)


Offline Νεκτάριος

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #3 on: January 23, 2012, 03:51:03 AM »
The Great Gatsby by Fitzgerald.  I love all of Fitzgerald's novels and the themes he deals with: the superficiality of life, the emptiness of many things, not finding happiness in wealth and being miserable if you aren't yourself.     

Offline Riddikulus

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #4 on: January 23, 2012, 04:08:48 AM »
Brideshead Revisited, by Evelyn Waugh.
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Offline Alpo

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #5 on: January 23, 2012, 04:42:09 AM »
Are you looking for novels or non-fiction?
The user should probably be sleeping by now.

Offline Vladik

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #6 on: January 23, 2012, 06:17:14 AM »
thanks to all

Are you looking for novels or non-fiction?

Everything.

Offline Νεκτάριος

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #7 on: January 23, 2012, 06:29:29 AM »
BTW, I recommend something like this from Айрис Press.  They have the original English text of the novel, but have fairly decent notes in Russian.   Karo has the same sort of system: original text with explanations in Russian. 

Offline Shiny

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2012, 06:42:22 AM »
First and foremost The King James Bible deserves to be at the top of the list. Period. It is still an outstanding literary achievement.

Now that I'm done pontificating onwards to the list.

Anything and everything by Dr. Seuss. (Ok I'm joking, but really...)

Henderson the Rain King - Saul Bellow

The Good Earth - Pearl S. Buck

The Sound and the Fury - William Faulkner

This Side of Paradise - F Scott Fitzgerald

Catch-22 - Joseph Heller

Main Street - Sinclair Lewis

Moby Dick - Herman Melville

Beloved - Toni Morrison

Gravity's Rainbow - Thomas Pynchon

East of Eden - John Steinbeck

Leaves of Grass - Walt Whitman

A Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess

The French Revolution - Thomas Carlyle

Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad

A Tale of Two Cities - Charles Dickens

The Alexandria Quartet - Lawrence Durrell

The Mill on the Floss - George Eliot Mary Ann Evans

Lord of the Flies - William Golding

I, Claudius - Robert Graves

Ghostwritten - David Mitchell

A House for Mr. Biswas - V. S. Naipaul

1984 - George Orwell

Can I just say that Nightfall (short story) is the the greatest short story ever by Isaac Asimov.
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

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Offline Shiny

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #9 on: January 23, 2012, 06:50:12 AM »
Oh and the greatest novel of all time:



Immensely charming, satisfying and exuberant. Eric Carle finely crafts an excellent balance between grace and truth. The colors harmonize the timeless quality of its prose; a masterstroke.
“There is your brother, naked, crying, and you stand there confused over the choice of an attractive floor covering.”

– St. Ambrose of Milan

Offline Iconodule

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #10 on: January 23, 2012, 09:06:59 AM »
Some of my favorite books and authors, in no particular order:

The King of Ireland's Son by Padraic Colum
Paradise Lost by John Milton
Le Morte D'Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory
The King of Elfland's Daughter by Lord Dunsany
The King James Bible
William Blake
Emily Dickinson
W.B. Yeats
John Keats
Shakespeare

Offline Vladik

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #11 on: January 23, 2012, 10:59:55 AM »
Actually Furher Putin has just written in an article:

"В некоторых ведущих американских университетах в 20-е годы прошлого века сложилось движение за изучение западного культурного канона. Каждый уважающий себя студент должен был прочитать 100 книг по специально сформированному списку"

Translation: "There was a movement - to learn the Western cultural canon - which  took place in some leading American Universities in 20's. A student who respected himself was to read 100 books from a specially made list. Some Universities have remained this tradition up to our days".

But this has nothing to do with this thread. Absolutely nothing.   :)

« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 11:06:55 AM by Vladik »

Offline Riddikulus

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #12 on: January 23, 2012, 06:12:24 PM »
It really depends on your tastes. I love all of Jane Austen's novels; and the Bronte sisters. Dickens has such heart and a great concern for much needed social reform during the time of his writing. Shakespeare, if English is your second language, might be a bit...ummmm...challenging.  :-\

Whatever you choose, all the best with your reading.
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Offline GiC

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2012, 06:24:00 PM »
I really liked this list:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/bigread/top100.shtml

Seems to be a nice combination of popular literature and the classics.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 06:24:27 PM by GiC »
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Offline JamesRottnek

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #14 on: January 23, 2012, 06:59:19 PM »
The Fortunate Pilgrim by Mario Puzo
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American Spirits - the eco-friendly cigarette.

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Offline dzheremi

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #15 on: January 23, 2012, 07:22:53 PM »
Try Orwell's "1984", Vladik. It is a bit like Britain's answer to Zamyatin's "Мы". CS Lewis is another favorite of basically everyone, though I'm ashamed to admit that I don't know him as well as I probably should (I've only read "Mere Christianity" as an adult, though I read "The Chronicles of Narnia" series as a child). On the other side of the pond, you can't get much more quintessentially American than Mark Twain. He and Kurt Vonnegut are probably my two favorites, though of course there are many runners' up. I read a lot of English-language authors in translation as a child, so I feel like I kind of missed out on some of what made Roald Dahl et. al. so special, but apparently those are good if you like fantasy stories. (Not fantasy like "sci-fi", but I figured i should throw in some kid stuff since someone else mentioned the one about the catepillar.)

Also, if we're allowed to include naturalized authors of foreign origins (which we must be, or else the excellent Joseph Conrad recommendation by Achronos must be out; he was a Pole who became a British citizen), then I must add Khalil Gibran (Lebanese American) to the list. "The Prophet" is his most famous work, but I have several others in addition to that and they are all incredibly beautiful works.




Offline LBK

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #16 on: January 23, 2012, 07:39:56 PM »
Anything written by John Steinbeck.
« Last Edit: January 23, 2012, 07:40:35 PM by LBK »
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Offline Vladik

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #17 on: January 26, 2012, 01:51:08 AM »
Many thanks!

Offline NicholasMyra

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #18 on: January 26, 2012, 05:43:53 AM »
The KJV.
Πάντα μὲν καθαρὰ τοῖς καθαροῖς
Τοῖς δὲ μεμιασμένοις καὶ ἀπίστοις οὐδὲν καθαρόν

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Offline Tallitot

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« Last Edit: January 26, 2012, 06:48:01 AM by Tallitot »
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Offline Manalive

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #20 on: January 26, 2012, 11:06:28 AM »
Don't forget, Mr. Charles Dickens.

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Offline Timon

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2012, 11:14:13 AM »
ANIMAL FARM!!!!
Even if we have thousands of acts of great virtue to our credit, our confidence in being heard must be based on God's mercy and His love for men. Even if we stand at the very summit of virtue, it is by mercy that we shall be saved.

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Offline Iconodule

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #22 on: January 26, 2012, 11:15:56 AM »
When it comes to Orwell, I very much enjoyed Homage to Catalonia.

Offline biro

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #23 on: January 26, 2012, 04:02:51 PM »
For slightly more recent books, I love Pat Conroy. The Lords of Discipline is amazing.

Offline Punch

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #24 on: January 26, 2012, 04:12:45 PM »
The Seven Pillars of Wisdom by T. E. Lawrence

Lord of the Flies by William Golding
I would be happy to agree with you, but then both of us would be wrong.

Offline biro

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Re: The greatest British and American books
« Reply #25 on: January 26, 2012, 04:14:44 PM »
"The Chosen," Chaim Potok