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The Book Club (Ten Things)

Even though I was a literature student back in High School and College, I never did develop a keen interest for fiction texts or literature novels; most of the time, I only read books because they were prescribed in the reading lists. However, with pockets of time in the army, I have started to develop a mild passion for reading; and as part of my 2011-12 resolutions, I compiled a list of famous novels for me to read and review throughout the year. Doing the aforementioned – and establishing The Book Club – allows me to keep track of the books I have read, and provides a proper closure for each book explored.

I am not a literary expert: the Ten Things I have picked up are personal perspectives, which may sometimes differ from critical analysis or academic commentaries. More importantly, as I have realised, just because a book is famous or critically acclaimed does not necessarily mean the reader will – or have to – enjoy it. Personally, I am a little biased towards detective and crime fiction, and enjoy thrilling plot developments over extensive descriptions of the settings or intricate characterisation. But that’s just me.

On a wider scale, I hope this list would inspire more individuals to start picking up fiction novels and read. You will never know what you are missing out on until you wholeheartedly decide to commit and read.

Fiction and Non-Fiction (Singaporean Authors)
Chee Joon Suan Democratically Speaking
Stella Kon Emily of Emerald Hill
Amanda Lee Koe Ministry of Moral Panic
Sonny Liew The Art of Charlie Chan Hock Chye
Catherine Lim Little Ironies: Stories of Singapore
Clement Mesenas Dissident Voices: Personalities in Singapore’s Political History
Poh Soo Kai Comet in our Sky: Lim Chin Siong in History | Living in a Time of Deception
Simon Tay Stand Alone
Wong Souk Yee Death of a Perm Sec

Fiction (International Authors)
Douglas Adams The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
Louisa May Alcott Little Women
Dante Alighieri Inferno
Martin Amis London Fields
Jane Austen Persuasion
Honoré de Balzac Old Goriot
Emily Brontë Wuthering Heights
Anthony Burgess A Clockwork Orange
Lewis Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland
Raymond Chandler The Big Sleep
Agatha Christie And Then There Were None | A Pocket Full of RyeCrooked House | Curtain: Poirot’s Last Case | Death on the Nile | Hercule Poirot’s ChristmasMurder on the Orient Express | Peril at End House | The Body in the LibraryThe Moving FingerThe Murder of Roger Ackroyd
J.M. Coetzee Disgrace
Joseph Conrad Heart of Darkness
Roald Dahl Ten Short Stories
Daniel Defoe Robinson Crusoe
Charles Dickens A Tale of Two CitiesGreat Expectations
Arthur Conan Doyle A Study in Scarlet | Hound of the Baskervilles | The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes | The Memoirs of Sherlock HolmesThe Sign of the Four
Alexandre Dumas The Three Musketeers
Umberto Eco The Name of the Rose
George Eliot Middlemarch
Brent Easton Ellis American Psycho
Ralph Ellison Invisible Man
Jeffrey Eugenides Middlesex
William Faulkner As I Lay Dying | The Sound and the Fury
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby
Gustave Flaubert Madame Bovary
Jonathan Safran Foer Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close
E.M. Forster A Passage to India
Neil Gaiman American Gods
Graham Greene Brighton Rock
Arthur Golden Memoirs of a Geisha
William Golding Lord of the Flies
Mark Haddon The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Joseph Heller Catch-22
Keigo Higashino Salvation of a SaintThe Devotion of Suspect X
Khaled Hosseini The Kite Runner
Victor Hugo Les Misérables
Aldous Huxley Brave New World
Milan Kundera The Unbearable Lightness of Being
John le Carré Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
Harper Lee To Kill a Mockingbird
Cixin Liu The Three-Body Problem | The Dark Forest | Death’s End
Herman Melville Moby-Dick
A.A. Milne Winnie-the-Pooh
Vladimir Nabokov Lolita
Audrey Niffenegger The Time Traveller’s Wife
George Orwell Animal Farm | Nineteen Eighty-Four
Orhan Pamuk My Name is Red
Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar
Ayn Rand Atlas Shrugged
J.D. Salinger The Catcher in the Rye
Mary Shelley Frankenstein
John Steinbeck Of Mice and Men | The Grapes of Wrath
Robert Louis Stevenson’s Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Bram Stoker Dracula
Jonathan Swift Gulliver’s Travels
Leo Tolstoy War and Peace
Mark Twain The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Jules Verne Journey to the Centre of the Earth
Kurt Vonnegut Cat’s CradleSlaughterhouse-Five
Evelyn Waugh Brideshead Revisited
H.G. Wells The War of the Worlds
Oscar Wilde The Picture of Dorian Gray
P.G. Wodehouse The Code of the Woosters
Virginia Woolf To the Lighthouse

Non-Fiction (International Authors)
Africa The Fate of Africa: A History of the Continent Since Independence
Arms Trade The Shadow World: Inside The Global Arms Trade
Capitalism Between Debt and the Devil: Money, Credit, and Fixing Global Finance | PostCapitalism: A Guide to our Future | The Price of Inequality
China Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New ChinaPrisoner of the State: The Secret Journal of Chinese Premier Zhao Ziyang | The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers
Communism The Red Flag: Communism and the Making of the Modern World | The Rise and Fall of Communism
Cold War The Cold War | Area 51: An Uncensored History of America’s Top Secret Military Base
Economics Nudge |  Poor Economics
Education Finnish Lessons 2.0: What Can the World Learn from Educational Changes in Finland?
Energy Oil on the Brain: Petroleum’s Long, Strange Trip to Your Tank
Environment The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
History A Little History of the World | A People’s History of the United StatesThe Pursuit of Power: Europe 1815-1914
India The End of Karma: Hope and Fury among India’s Young
Justice Between the World and Me | Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption
Media The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You | WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy
Memoirs and Collections Dag Hammarskjöld: Instrument, Catalyst, Inspirer | Decision Points | Hillbilly Elegy | When Breath Becomes Air
Middle East Every Man in this Village is a Liar: An Education in War | If the Oceans were Ink: An Unlikely Friendship and a Journey to the Heart of the Quran | The Way to the Spring: Life and Death in Palestine 
Politics Against Elections: The Case for Democracy
Public Policy Hard Choices: Challenging the Singapore Consensus | Missed InformationShow Me the Evidence: Obama’s Fight for Rigour and Results in Public Policy | Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty
Psychology The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable | The Geography of Thought: How Asians and Westerners Think Differently … and WhyThinking, Fast and Slow
Science Sapiens: A Brief History of HumankindThe Emperor of all Maladies: A Biography of Cancer
Statistics Superforecasting: the Art and Science of Prediction
Terrorism Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS | No Good Men among the Living: America, the Taliban, and the War through Afghan Eyes | One of Us: The Story of Anders Breivik and the Massacre in Norway | What Terrorists Want
Trivia What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
United Nations Backstabbing for Beginners: My Crash Course in International Diplomacy | United Nations at a Glance
Writing The Elements of Style

Comics
Batman Arkham AsylumBlack and White, Vol. 1, 2, 3 | Dark Victory | Haunted Knight | Hush | Knightfall, Vol. 1 | The Black Mirror | The Dark Knight Returns, Strikes AgainThe Killing Joke | The Long Halloween | The Man Who Laughs | Whatever Happened to the Caped Crusader? | Year One
From Hell
The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Vol. 1, 2
The Little World of Liz Climo
Kingdom Come
Maus
Persepolis
Superman Whatever Happened to the Man of Tomorrow?
The Sandman Preludes and Nocturnes | The Doll’s House | Dream Country | Season of Mists | A Game of You | Fables and Reflections | Brief Lives
Tintin Tintin in the Land of the Soviets
Tom Strong Deluxe Edition Book One
V for Vendetta
Watchmen

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Discussion

102 thoughts on “The Book Club (Ten Things)

  1. Might I suggest also two British writers. Graham Greene and Kazuo Ishiguro.

    I find Greene’s prose useful as studies in effective story telling. He effortlessly combines the most common techniques, from memorable characterization, to metaphors, to action flow. Outside of these, his humour makes his stories very enjoyable reads, even if they are of a gone era.

    Some folks criticize Ishiguro for being haphazard. But I think he accurately reflects how people remember things, frequently jumping from one topic to another, and back. That makes his tales enduring.

    Posted by timmytimtim93 | November 30, 2012, 5:41 pm

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