Emma’s Reading List

My friend Emma and her family are about to head off on a long road trip. They’ll be camping. When the sun goes down each night there won’t be any modern distractions (television, iPads, playing on phones). She’s bought herself a Kindle and asked me “So, what should I read?”. This is Emma’s list (in no particular order of fabulousness).

Contemporary Literature

The Cider House Rules by John Irving
Last Night in Twisted River by John Irving
We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver
Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close by Jonathan Safran Foer
The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach
Less Than Zero by Brett Easton Ellis
Bee Season by Myla GoldbergSeating Arrangements by Maggie Shipstead
Loving Frank by Nancy Horan
The Slap by Christos Tsiolkas
Heft by Liz Moore
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Year of Wonders by Geraldine Brooks
The Reader by Berhard Schlink
A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
Little Known Facts by Christine Sneed
The Starboard Sea by Amber McDermott
Then We Came to the End by Joshua Ferris
Atonement by Ian McEwan
The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood
Red Dog by Louis de Bernieres
Animal People by Charlotte Wood
The Feast of Love by Charles Baxter
The Forrests by Emily Perkins
Delicacy by David Foenkinos
Tigers in Red Weather by Lisa Klaussman
Foal’s Bread by Gillian Mears
When God Was a Rabbit by Sarah Winman
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver

A Little Bit of Suspense

The Lovely Bonesby Alice Sebold
The Dinner by Herman Koch
Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson
Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind
The Engagement by Chloe Hooper
The Secret History by Donna Tartt
White Mischief, The Murder of Lord Erroll by James Fox
Never Let Me  Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Light and Fluffy

Domestic Violets by Matthew Norman
Love and Other Impossible Pursuits by Ayelet Waldman
She’s Come Undone by Wally Lamb
Man and Boy by Tony Parsons
My Latest Grievance by Elinor Lipman
This Is Where I Leave You by Jonathan Tropper
Plan B by Jonathan Tropper
I Don’t Know How She Does It by Allison Pearson
About a Boy by Nick Hornby
One Day by David Nicholls
The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin
Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding
One Last Thing Before I Go by Jonathan Tropper
Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells
The Accidental Billionaires by Ben Mezark
The Help by Kathryn Stockett

Memoirs and Non-Fiction

A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
Running with Scissors by Augusten Burroughs
Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourbain
Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt
Dress Your Family in Corduroy and Denim by David Sedaris
Behind the Beautiful Forevers by Katherine Boo
Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua
Beautiful Boy by David Sheff
and then read Tweak by Nic Sheff
The Tipping Point by Malcolm Gladwell
The First Stone by Helen Garner

10 responses

  1. What a list. My eye fell on my copy of The Secret History tonight as I sat on the couch. I think it’s almost time to re-read it. Loved Foal’s Bread, Year of Wonders & Atonement. Enjoyed Less Than Zero and The Reader. Lovely Bones is terrific and so is Garner’s The First Stone, regardless of ‘which side you’re on.’

    • Remember how much hoo-ha The First Stone caused when it was released?! I really like Garner’s journalistic writing style – her other books are equally good but First Stone stands out for me because I was at Melb Uni at the time.

      I’m due for a re-read of The Secret History as well. I read it when it was first released – the fact that I still remember the reading experience (but not all of the story) tells me that it is a great book.

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