Monday, June 2, 2014

Top 100 Mainstream Fiction

[Updated June 2014]

Top Mainstream Fiction (ss = Short Stories)

** = latest additions

A gripping mystery that borders on
fantasy but is a romance at its heart

1. The Magus by John Fowles
2. Women In Love by D.H. Lawrence
3. Another Roadside Attraction by Tom Robbins
4. Mila 18 by Leon Uris
5. Steps by Jerzy Kosinski
Blood Meridian by Cormac McCarthy**
7. The Confession of a Child of the Century by Thomas Rogers
8. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
9. Stop-Time by Frank Conroy
10. I Am the Cheese by Robert Cormier
11. Going After Cacciato by Tim O'Brien
12. Black Spring (ss) by Henry Miller
13. The Nigger of the Narcissus by Joseph Conrad
14. In God We Trust, All Others Pay Cash (ss) by Jean Shepherd (parts filmed as "A Christmas Story")
15. Mysteries by Knut Hamsen
16. Perfume by Patric Suskind
17. Other Voices, Other Rooms by Truman Capote
18. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
19. Ourselves by Jonathan Strong
20. Unspeakable Practices, Unnatural Acts (ss) by Donald Barthelme
21. Sexus (The Rosy Crucifixion, Pt. 1) by Henry Miller
22. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
23. Horseman, Pass By by Larry McMurtry (filmed as "Hud")
24. All My Friends Are Going to be Strangers by Larry McMurtry
25. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
26. Painted Bird by Jerzy Kosinski
27. The Agony and the Ecstasy by Irving Stone
28. The Reader by Bernard Schlink
29. Dog Soldiers by Robert Stone (filmed as "Who'll Stop the Rain")
30. White Noise by Don DeLillo
31. Boy’s Life by Robert McCammon
32. Shane by Jack Schaeffer
33. Lonesome Dove by Larry McMurtry
34. Winged Pharoah by Joan Grant
35. The Shadowboxer by Noel Behn
36. Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
37. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
38. Outcast of the Islands by Joseph Conrad
39. The Centaur by John Updike
40. The Caine Mutiny by Herman Wouk
41. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neal Hurston
42. Birdy by William Wharton
43. A Few Last Words (ss) by James Sallis
44. A History of Luminous Motion by Scott Bradfield
45. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
46. Something of Value by Robert Ruark
47. Hunger by Knut Hamsen
48. The Wanderer (or the End of Youth) by Alain-Fournier
49. Seven Days in May by F. Knebel & C. W. Bailey
50. The Last Picture Show by Larry McMurtry
51. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford
52. House of Incest by Anais Nin
53. Voyage in the Dark by Jean Rhys
54. Fugitive Pieces by Anne Michaels
55. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
56. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
57. Angels and Demons by Dan Brown
58. The Killer Angels by Michael Shaara
59. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
60. The French Lieutenant's Woman by John Fowles
61. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
62. The Rainbow by D.H. Lawrence
63. Plexus (Rosy Crucifixion 2) by Henry Miller
64. Wanda Hickey's Night of Golden Memories (ss) by Jean Shepherd
65. Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe
66. The Things They Carried (ss) by Tim O'Brien
67. Setting Free the Bears by John Irving
68. Cypress Grove by James Sallis**
69. Advise and Consent by Allen Drury
70. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
71. Lost Horizon by James Hilton
72. Shoeless Joe by W.P. Kinsella (filmed as "Field of Dreams")
73. Therese Raquin by Emile Zola
74. The Locked Room (3) by Paul Auster
75. The Murder of Roger Akroyd by Agatha Christie
76. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
77. A Confederate General from Big Sur by Richard Brautigan
78. The Bushwhacked Piano by Thomas McGuane
79. Tike and Five Stories (ss) by Jonathan Strong
80. Michael Strogoff by Jules Verne
81. The Long-Legged Fly by James Sallis**
82. Lady Chatterly's Lover by D.H. Lawrence
83. Delta of Venus (ss) by Anais Nin
84. Diva by Delacorta
85. Mutiny on the Bounty Nordoff & Hall
86. The Fixer by Bernard Malamud
87. Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
88. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
89. Three Short Novels by Joseph Conrad
90. Fade by Robert Cormier
91. The Heart is a Lonely Hunter by Carson McCullers
92. And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
93. The Bean Trees by Barbara Kingsolver
94. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
95. Scorpio Rising by R.G. Vliet
96. The Hunt For Red October by Tom Clancy
97. My Darling, My Hamburger by Paul Zindel
98. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
99. Heat and Dust by Ruth Prawar Jvabvala
100. Death Will Have Your Eyes by James Sallis

Best of the Rest
101. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
102. Maggie Cassidy by Jack Kerouac
103. Rock Springs by Richard Ford
104. The List of 7 by Mark Frost
105. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
106. Uhuru by Robert Ruark
107. Anywhere But Here by Mona Simpson
108. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
109. The Chocolate War by Robert Cormier
110. City of Glass (New York Trilogy 1) by Paul Auster
111. Midnight Cowboy by James Leo Herlihey
112. Running Dog by Don DeLillo
113. Almayer's Folly by Joseph Conrad
114. The Story of O by Pauline Réage
115. The Universal Baseball Assoc., J. Henry Waugh, proprieter by Robert Coover
116. The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris
117. Equilibrium by Tonino Guerra
118. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
119. The Siege of Salt Cove by Anthony Weller [I grew up with Anthony 3 doors up on my street; he is also a guitarist with a music degree and CDs out!]
120. Long Division by Anne Riophe
121. King Rat by James Clavell
122. Edisto by Padgett Powell
123. House of Pomegranates & Other Tales (ss) by Oscar Wilde
124. Big Sur by Jack Kerouac
125. Last Summer by Evan Hunter
126. Rabbit, Run by John Updike
127. Running Out by Christopher Brookhouse
128. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

My favorite novelists are (1) Larry McMurtry (2) Joseph Conrad (3) Henry Miller. Conrad is amazing, a Pole writing in English! McMurtry is without doubt America's greatest in history, though perhaps Cormac McCarthy is a new contender; I must read his complete works, at least the western novels.

Henry Miller's sprawling stream-of-consciousness and uncensored language were decades ahead of the public and helped shape the 20th century's lifestyle. In spite of his distractions, his multi-cultured philosophy posits a more universally humanitarian treatment of each other than has been shown in our history. Jonathan Strong has written two of the best romances: Tike and Ourselves, both uncompromising, short, and honest. Knut Hamsen deserved his Nobel, Hemingway did NOT, and doesn't everyone wish Harper Lee had written more novels than just To Kill a Mockingbird?

The Great White Hope by Howard Sackler
Play It Again, Sam by Woody Allen
The Effect of Gamma Rays on Man-in-the-Moon Marigolds by Paul Zindel
Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Edward Albee

The Back Country by Gary Snyder
Regarding Wave by Gary Snyder
Left Out in the Rain by Gary Snyder
Ariel by Sylvia Plath
Flowers of Evil by Baudelaire
Collected Poems of Kenneth Patchen
Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
Bratsk Station by Yevgeny Yevtushenko
Selected Poems of Frederico Garcia Lorca
Collected Poems of Gerard Manley Hopkins
One Hundred Poems from the Japanese, trans. by Kenneth Rexroth


Regan Brantley June 20, 2009 at 11:48 PM  
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