A while – well almost a full year actually – ago, The Webmeister asked me to recommend a reading list of ‘modern’ books in English. Shortly there after I scribbled down a ‘front-of-mind’ list on a piece of paper, which I then typically ‘lost’. In a pocket of a pair of trousers, that I haven’t worn since then, this has now re-emerged. I don’t in any way consider myself widely read and, looking at it again now, it is definitely a list ‘of its time’. However, I do think most of the books would appear on my list at any time. I share it with you, for what it’s worth, as an act of self-indulgence and to invite comment & other suggestions.  (The list is presented in the order I wrote them down.)

HERMANN HESSE: Narcissus & Goldmund/Siddhartha/The Glass Bead Game

PAUL AUSTER: The New York Trilogy

THOMAS MANN: Buddenbrooks/Death in Venice

HEMINGWAY: A Farewell To Arms

ORWELL: Down And Out In London and Paris/1984/Animal Farm

SALINGER: Catcher In The RyeBooks

J G BALLARD: Supper Cannes

WILLIAM BOYD: Brazzaville Beach


FITZGERALD: The Great Gatsby

D H LAWRENCE: Sons & Lovers

KEROUAC: On The Road


DAVID GUTERSON: Snows Falling On Cedars


GOLDING: Lord Of The Flies


VONNEGUT: Slaughterhouse Five

ASIMOV: Foundation (Series)

ROBERT PERSIG: Zen And The Art Of Motorcycle Maintenance

SEBASTIAN FAULKS: Alphabet Soup/Engleby

ORHAN PAMUK: My name Is Red

JOHN LE CARRE: Absolute Friends

KHALED HOSSEINI: The Kite Runner/ A 1000 Splendid Suns

MARKUS ZUSAK: The Book Thief

CARLOS RUIZ ZAFON: The Shadow Of The Wind

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