Not my catchiest title, I’ll admit. But this week’s Top Ten Tuesday forces me to admit which books I’ve been putting off reading for far too long. As you’ll see, mostly my excuse is just plain, good old-fashioned laziness….
Top Ten Unread Books That Have Been On My TBR Shelf Since Before I Began Blogging
1. Middlemarch, by George Eliot – Eliot seems like the natural choice for readers making their way through the most famous English female writers, from Austen to the Brontës to Gaskell. I’ve done all three of those authors, but I’ve yet to build up the enthusiasm to face Eliot’s grimmer style of writing. Plus I’m sad to say that The Mill on the Floss kind of bored me to tears.
2. A Thousand Splendid Suns, by Khaled Hosseini – I’ve had this book on my shelf for far too many years, although I periodically forget about it because it keeps getting buried underneath newer, unread books.
3. A Tale of Two Cities, by Charles Dickens – I’ve read my fair share of Dickens, but I haven’t been able to get into one of his more famous, and shorter, novels.
4. Ulysses, by James Joyce – Ah, my old nemesis. Ulysses has been on my TBR for years, and I’ve never yet mustered the enthusiasm to tackle this monster of a book.
5. A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, by Mary Wollstonecraft – As a long-avowed feminist, it seems like enormous laziness on my part that I have yet to read what is arguably the first feminist treatise in history. No excuses here. I’m just lazy.
6. The Aeneid, by Virgil – I managed to study Classics for three years at university without ever reading the Aeneid cover-to-cover. #studentlyfe.
7. Waverley, by Walter Scott – As you can imagine, I’m thoroughly ashamed of the fact that I didn’t read this book while in Scotland. It would be entirely appropriate. In my defence, I did borrow it from the library, intending to read it, but somehow I was never in the mood. Instead I read English, American, Turkish, and Croatian books, but almost nothing actually set in Scotland, or by a Scottish author.
8. Baba Jaga je snijela jaje (Baba Yaga Laid an Egg), by Dubravka Ugrešić – I left my Croatian copy back home in Australia, so although I technically read the English translation that I stumbled upon in a bookstore in Edinburgh, the Croatian original is still sitting on my shelf, unread.
9. Let Us Compare Mythologies, by Leonard Cohen – Leonard Cohen writes and sings about sex. A lot. Some other stuff too, but mostly there’s a hell of a lot of sex. Despite this, I do like both his poetry and his music – it just means that you have to be prepared to suppress your knee-jerk ‘prude’ reactions whenever you read his books. Maybe watching an episode of Orange is the New Black or Outlander might help with that process, I don’t know.
10. The Madwoman in the Attic, by Sandra M. Gilbert and Susan Gubar – Another piece of classic feminist criticism that I’ve yet to read (despite referring to a chapter or two in more than one university essay over the past few years!).
Which books have been sitting on your TBR shelf for far too long?