Literary Hub

The Reading Lists Hidden Inside 12 Great Books

Earlier this year, I read Rabih Alameddine’s An Unnecessary Woman for the first time, and was immediately delighted—I mean, if you want to seduce me as a reader, you could do no better than to mention W. G. Sebald on page three. Except perhaps by following up with Roberto Bolaño and Italo Calvino, which Alameddine does in short order. You see, the protagonist of An Unnecessary Woman is an amateur translator of great texts—no one reads her work, but her entire life revolves around books. (Relatable.) I was halfway though before I realized that I should probably be keeping a list of the books mentioned in the text, but as it turns out, there was little need—I found one online. Afterwards, I was inspired to look into other book-filled books. Spoiler alert: there are quite a number. It’s almost as if writers love books or something.

Note that I am counting plays as books here, as well as book-length poems and epics, but short stories and single poems are listed separately. I make no claims that these lists are definitive, though I’ve made them as complete as possible. Obviously, there are many more novels and memoirs that mention long lists of books than are included here, but I’m limited, as ever, by time, availability of data, and the demands of maintaining sanity. So below, please find twelve books that are filled to the gills with mentions of other books, and feel free to add further suggestions in the comments.

Rabih Alameddine, An Unnecessary Woman

Austerlitz, W. G. Sebald
The Emigrants, W. G. Sebald
2666, Roberto Bolaño
The Savage Detectives, Roberto Bolaño
A Heart So White, Javier Marías
Tomorrow in the Battle Think on Me, Javier Marías
Your Face Tomorrow trilogy, Javier Marías
A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
Invisible Cities, Italo Calvino
Cinnamon Shops, Bruno Schulz
The Conformist, Alberto Moravia
Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
The Reluctant Fundamentalist, Mohsin Hamid
The Shipping News, Annie Proulx
The Magic Mountain, Thomas Mann
One Hundred Years of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez
The Year of the Death of Ricardo Reis, José Saramago
Murphy, Samuel Beckett
Waiting for Godot, Samuel Beckett
Giovanni’s Room, James Baldwin
Corydon, André Gide
Sepharad, Antonio Muñoz Molina
Sophie’s Choice, William Styron
Nightwood, Djuna Barnes
The Leopard, Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa
Kaddish for an Unborn Child, Imre Kertész
Fateless (or Fatelessness), Imre Kertész
Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Brothers Karamazov, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
The Kingdom of God Is Within You, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
The Waves, Virginia Woolf
Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
The Book of Disquiet, Fernando Pessoa
The Fall, Albert Camus
The French Lieutenant’s Woman, John Fowles
Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka
The English Patient, Michael Ondaatje
Dubliners, James Joyce
Herzog, Saul Bellow
For Whom the Bell Tolls, Ernest Hemingway
The Encyclopedia of the Dead, Danilo Kiš
Ransom, David Malouf
The Color Purple, Alice Walker
This Way for the Gas, Ladies and Gentlemen, Tadeusz Borowski
Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Flight Without End, Joseph Roth
Hunger, Knut Hamsun
A Book of Memories, Péter Nádas
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, Muriel Spark
A House for Mr. Biswas, V. S. Naipaul
Midnight’s Children, Salman Rushdie
Waiting for the Barbarians, J. M. Coetzee
Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?, Edward Albee

Plus the stories “Hills Like White Elephants,” by Ernest Hemingway, and “Death of a Traveling Salesman,” by Eudora Welty, as well as the poem “The Vanity of Human Wishes” by Samuel Johnson.

Other writers mentioned include:

Albert Camus, Marguerite Duras, Junot Díaz, Aleksandar Hemon, Nadine Gordimer, Nuruddin Farah, Patrick White, Milan Kundera, Ismail Kadare, Nikolai Gogol, Jorge Luis Borges, Cees Nooteboom, Bilge Karasu, Marguerite Yourcenar, Constantine P. Cavafy, Alice Munro, Sadegh Hedayat, Marcel Proust, Jean Améry, Novalis, William Burroughs, Joseph Conrad, Federico García Lorca

[list adapted from Macro Literature]

Alison Bechdel, Fun Home

Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
The Nude, Kenneth Clark
The Stones of Venice, John Ruskin
Just So Stories, Rudyard Kipling
A Happy Death, Albert Camus
The Tin Drum, Günter Grass
The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Far Side of Paradise, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Zelda, Nancy Milford
Remembrance of Things Past, Marcel Proust
The Worm Ouroboros, Eric Rücker Eddison
The Merriam-Webster dictionary
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
Baby and Child Care, Dr. Benjamin Spock
The Trumpet of the Swan, E.B. White
Johnny Tremain, Esther Forbes
Danny Dunn, Time Traveler, Raymond Abrashkin and Jay Williams
The Fellowship of the Ring, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Heart of Darkness, Joseph Conrad
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, James Joyce
The Odyssey, Homer
Ulysses, James Joyce
Earthly Paradise, Colette
The Well of Loneliness, Radclyffe Hall
Delta of Venus, Anaïs Nin
Maurice, E. M. Forster
The Front Runner, Patricia Nell Warren
La Bâtarde, Violette Leduc
Our Bodies, Ourselves
Sappho Was a Right-On Woman, Sidney Abbott
Dream of a Common Language, Adrienne Rich
Beginning with O, Olga Broumas
Gyn/ecology, Mary Daly
Women in the Shadows, Ann Weldy
Lesbian/Woman, Del Martin & Phyllis Lyon
Orlando, Virginia Woolf
Rubyfruit Jungle, Rita Mae Brown
Desert of the Heart, Jane Rule
The Homosexual Matrix, C.A. Tripp
Lesbian Nation, Jill Johnston
The World of Pooh, A. A. Milne
James and the Giant Peach, Roald Dahl
The Portrait of a Lady, Henry James
The Waterfall, Margaret Drabble
The American Dream, Edward Albee
Morning’s at Seven, Paul Osborn
The Importance of Being Earnest, Oscar Wilde
The Heiress, Ruth & Augustus Goetz
The Taming of the Shrew, William Shakespeare

Plus Albert Camus’s essay “The Myth of Sisyphus,” and Wallace Stevens’s poem “Sunday Morning.”

[list adapted from The Black Letters]

Rebecca Makkai, The Borrower

Matilda, Roald Dahl
Little House in the Big Woods, Laura Ingalls Wilder
Fantastic Mr. Fox, Roald Dahl
Green Eggs and Ham, Dr. Seuss
Tales of a 4th Grade Nothing, Judy Blume
D’Aulaires’ Greek Myths, Ingri d’Aulaire & Edgar Parin d’Aulaire
The Wheel on the School, Meindert Dejong
The Egypt Game, Zilpha Keatley Snyder
Theater Shoes, Noel Streatfeild
My Side of the Mountain, Jean Craighead George
From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, E. L. Konigsburg
Charlotte’s Web, E. B. White
Tuck Everlasting, Natalie Babbitt
The Golden Goblet, Eloise Jarvis McGraw
The Empty Pot, Demi
The Chronicles of Narnia, C. S. Lewis
Misty of Chincoteague, Marguerite Henry
Vanity Fair, W. M. Thackeray
A Wrinkle in Time, Madeleine L’Engle
The Westing Game, Ellen Raskin
Haroun and the Sea of Stories, Salman Rushdie
Five Children and It, E. Nesbit
The Princess Bride, William Goldman
Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
The Search for Delicious, Natalie Babbitt
Blueberries for Sal, Robert McCloskey
Carry On, Mr. Bowditch, Jean Lee Latham
Oz series L. Frank Baum
The Little Grey Men, BB
The Borrowers, Mary Norton
Johnny Tremain, Esther Forbes
The Hobbit, J. R. R. Tolkien
Danny, the Champion of the World, Roald Dahl
The BFG, Roald Dahl
Number the Stars, Lois Lowry
The 21 Balloons, William Pene Dubois
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
Heidi, Johanna Spyri
The Giver, Lois Lowry
The Golden Compass, Philip Pullman
Lord of the Flies, William Golding
The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger
A Separate Peace, John Knowles
The Things They Carried, Tim O’Brien
David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
Middlesex, Jeffrey Eugenides
The Pushcart War, Jean Merrill
Where the Red Fern Grows, Wilson Rawls

[list courtesy of the author herself]

Jo Walton, Among Others

Dragonquest, Anne McCaffrey
Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Wind’s Twelve Quarters, Volume 2, Ursula Le Guin
The Last Starship from Earth, John Boyd
When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit, Judith Kerr
Ensign Flandry, Poul Anderson
Creatures of Light and Darkness, Roger Zelazny
Empire Star, Samuel R. Delany
God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
Cat’s Cradle, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
Breakfast of Champions, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
Welcome to the Monkey House, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
The Sirens of Titan, Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.
Pilgrimage, Zenna Henderson
The Chrysalids, John Wyndham
The Bull From the Sea, Mary Renault
The Charioteer, Mary Renault
Dragonflight, Anne McCaffrey
Illusions, Ursula Le Guin
The Flight of the Horse, Larry Niven
Ringworld, Larry Niven
A Gift from Earth, Larry Niven
Out of the Silent Planet, C. S. Lewis
Warm Worlds and Otherwise, James Tiptree, Jr.
Nine Princes in Amber, Roger Zelazny
The Guns of Avalon, Roger Zelazny
Our Mutual Friend, Charles Dickens
Triton, Samuel Delany
I Capture the Castle, Dodie Smith
The Starlight Barking, Dodie Smith
The Communist Manefesto, Karl Marx
Purposes of Love, Mary Renault
The Last of the Wine, Mary Renault
The Magus, John Fowles
Dying Inside, Robert Silverberg
The Left Hand of the Electron, Isaac Asimov
The Symposium, Plato
World of Ptaavs, Larry Niven
Time Enough for Love, Robert A. Heinlein
Dangerous Visions, Theodore Sturgeon
The Best of the Galaxy Volume IV, ed. Jim Baen
The Spell Sword, Marion Zimmer Bradley
Babel 17, Samuel R. Delany
Glory Road, Robert A. Heinlein
Callahan’s Crosstime Saloon, Spider Robinson
Waldo and Magic, Inc., Robert A. Heinlein
The Broken Sword, Poul Anderson
Telempath, Spider Robinson
Up the Line, Robert Silverberg
Beyond the Tomorrow Mountains, Sylvia Engdahl
Heritage of the Star, Sylvia Engdahl
Crow, Ted Hughes
Dragonsinger, Anne McCaffrey
Lord Foul’s Bane, Stephen Donaldson
A Wizard of Earthsea, Ursula Le Guin
The Silmarillion, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Hobbit, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Crystal Cave, Mary Stewart
Dragonsong, Anne McCaffrey
The Shockwave Rider, John Brunner
Stand on Zanzibar, John Brunner
Imperial Earth, Arthur C. Clarke
Childhood’s End, Arthur C. Clarke
2001, Arthur C. Clarke
Born With the Dead, Robert Silverberg
Red Shift, Alan Garner
The Dispossessed, Ursula K. Le Guin
City, Clifford Simak
Dune, Frank Herbert
Republic, Plato
Daughter of Time, Josephine Tey
An Old Captivity, Nevil Shute
Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
Prince Caspian, C.S. Lewis
Mere Christianity
, C.S. Lewis
The Eye of Heron, Ursula Le Guin
The Word For World is Forest, Ursula Le Guin
The Lathe of Heaven, Ursula Le Guin
The Left Hand of Darkness, Ursula Le Guin
The Kissing Gate, Susan Sallis
Stepsons of Terra, Robert Silverberg
Dying Inside, Robert Silverberg
Voyage to Alpha Centauri, Robert Silverberg
The World Inside, Robert Silverberg
Make Room! Make Room!, Robert Silverberg
The Dark is Rising sequence, Susan Cooper
The Mote in God’s Eye, Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle
The White Dragon, Anne McCaffrey
Citizens of the Galaxy, Robert A. Heinlein
The Farthest Shore, Ursula K. Le Guin
Emma, Jane Austen
Selected Poems, W.H. Auden
Guide to Science, Isaac Asimov
A History of the English-Speaking Peoples, Winston Churchill
A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte
The Einstein Intersection, Samuel R. Delany
Charisma, Michael Coney
Hello Summer, Goodbye, Michael Coney
Sign of the Unicorn, Roger Zelazny
Far From the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
Aeneid, Virgil
The Dream Master, Roger Zelazny
Mission of Gravity, Hal Clement
Vicinity Cluster, Piers Anthony
Chaining the Lady, Piers Anthony
A Spell for Chameleon, Piers Anthony
Return to Night, Mary Renault
Brat Farrar, Josephine Tey
Isle of the Dead, Roger Zelazny
I, Claudius, Robert Graves
The Laws, Plato
Phaedrus, Plato
The Greeks, H.D.F. Kitto
Telepathist, John Brunner
Elsie Dinsmore, Martha Finley
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
Eric, or Little by Little, Frederic W. Farrar
What Katy Did, Susan Coolidge
Pollyanna, Eleanor H. Porter
Space Hostages, Nicholas Fisk
Doorways in the Sand, Roger Zelazny
Roadmarks, Roger Zelazny
The Number of the Beast, Robert A. Heinlein
Starship Troopers, Robert A. Heinlein
The Moon is a Harsh Mistress, Robert A. Heinlein
Creatures of Light and Darkness, Roger Zelazny
This Immortal, Roger Zelazny
The Persian Boy, Mary Renault
Pavane, Keith Roberts
Times Without Number, John Brunner
The Man in the High Castle, Phillip K. Dick
Bring the Jubilee, Ward Moore
Guardians of Time, Poul Anderson
A Dream of Wessex, Christopher Priest
Lord Kalvan of Otherwhen, H. Beam Piper
Too Many Magicians, Randall Garrett
A Touch of Strange, Theodore Sturgeon
Inverted World, Christopher Priest
Gate of Ivrel, C.J. Cherryh
The Adventures of Tom Bombadil, J.R.R. Tolkien
The Tempest, William Shakespeare
Romeo and Juliet, William Shakespeare
A Midsummer Night’s Dream, William Shakespeare
The Winter’s Tale, William Shakespeare
Richard II, William Shakespeare
The Waste Land, T.S. Eliot
Four Quartets, T.S. Eliot

Plus the short stories “The Girl Who Was Plugged In”, “Love Is the Plan, the Plan Is Death”, and “Houston, Houston, Do You Read?”, all by James Tiptree Jr., and “The Raven,” by Edgar Allan Poe.

[list adapted from The Foxtrot Firefly, via Jo Walton]

Donna Tartt, The Secret History

Tom Swift, Victor Appleton
Paradise Lost, John Milton
Goodbye, Columbus, Philip Roth
The New Testament
Poetics, Aristotle
The Iliad, Homer
Parmenides, Plato
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Ivanhoe, Sir Walter Scott
The Rover Boys seriesm Edward Stratemeyer
The Journey from Chester to London, Thomas Pennant
The Bobbsey Twins series, Laura Lee Hope
The Final Problem, Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
Janson’s History of Art, Anthony Janson
Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
Mémoires, Duc de Saint-Simon
Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
The World Book Encyclopedia
Men of Thought and Deed, E. Tipton Chatsford (I think this one is invented)
Invisible Man, H.G. Wells
Peter Pan, or The Boy Who Wouldn’t Grow Up, J. M. Barrie
The Divine Comedy, Dante
The Upanishads
Perry Mason Novels, Erle Stanley Gardner
Corpus of Mycenaean Inscriptions from Knossos
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Our Mutual Friend, Charles Dickens
Oresteia, Aeschylus
The Bacchae
, Euripides
Marino Faliero
, Lord Byron
, William Shakespeare
The Malcontent
, John Marston
The White Devil
, John Webster
Doctor Faustus
, Christopher Marlowe
The Revenger’s Tragedy
, Cyril Tourneur (Thomas Middleton)
The Waste Land, T. S. Eliot

Plus the shorter poems:

“With Rue my Heart is Laden,” A. E. Housman
“Lycidas,” John Milton
“The Charge of the Light Brigade,” Alfred Lord Tennyson
“In Flanders Fields,” John McCrae
“Why so pale and wan fond lover?,” Sir John Suckling

Other authors mentioned: J. R. R. Tolkien, Ezra Pound, Alfred Douglas, Robert de Montesquiou, Virgil, Plotinus, Pliny, Parmenides, Marie Corelli, Alexander Pope, John Donne, Rupert Brooke, Edgar Allen Poe, Hegel, Raymond Chandler, Gregory of Tours, Thomas Aquinas, P. G. Wodehouse, George Orwell, Harold Acton, Salman Rushdie, Agatha Christie, Marcel Proust, John Ford, Walter Raleigh, Thomas Nashe, Philip K. Dick

[list adapted from The Oosterbook and Tolstoy Therapy]

Jeffrey Eugenides, The Marriage Plot

Couples, John Updike
The Sorrows of Young Werther, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
A Sorrow Beyond Dreams, Peter Handke
The House of Mirth, Edith Wharton
The Age of Innocence, Edith Wharton
Daniel Deronda, George Eliot
Middlemarch, George Eliot
The Imitation of Christ, Thomas à Kempis
Confessions, Saint Augustine
Interior Castle, Saint Teresa of Avila
The Answers of Jesus to Job, G. Campbell Morgan
The God Who Is There, Francis Schaeffer
A Confession, Leo Tolstoy
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
The Crying of Lot 49, Thomas Pynchon
V., Thomas Pynchon
Writings in General Linguistics, Ferdinand de Saussure
A Lover’s Discourse, Roland Barthes
The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism, Max Weber
Auguste Comte and Positivism: The Essential Writings, ed. Gertrud Lenzer
The Courage to Be, Paul Tillich
Being and Time, Martin Heidegger
The Drama of Atheist Humanism, Henri de Lubac
Barchester Towers, Anthony Trollope
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Persuasion, Jane Austen
Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen
Emma, Jane Austen
The Portrait of a Lady, Henry James
Sister Carrie, Theodore Dreiser
Of Grammatology, Jacques Derrida
Writing and Difference, Jacques Derrida
A Moveable Feast, Ernest Hemingway
Sarrasine, Honoré de Balzac
The Song of Hiawatha, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow
H. M. Pulham, Esquire, John P. Marquand
Love Story, Erich Segal
Myra Breckinridge, Gore Vidal
Moby-Dick, Herman Melville
Paradise Lost, John Milton
Franny and Zooey, J. D. Salinger
Ulysses, James Joyce
Invisible Cities, Italo Calvino
Something Beautiful for God, Malcolm Muggeridge
The Madwoman in the Attic, Sandra M. Gilbert
The Role of the Reader, Umberto Eco
On Deconstruction, Jonathan Culler
The Oxford Book of English Verse, ed. Christopher Ricks
Ontogeny and Phylogeny, Stephen Jay Gould
The Orthodox Church, Kallistos Ware
A Dance to the Music of Time, Anthony Powell
The Varieties of Religious Experience, William James
The Cloud of Unknowing, Anonymous
Dark Night of the Soul, San Juan de la Cruz
New French Feminisms, Elaine Marks

Other authors mentioned include: Charles Dickens, Emily Brontë, Charlotte Brontë, H.D., Denise Levertov, Colette, Heinrich von Kleist, Thomas Merton, William Gaddis, E. M. Cioran, Robert Walser, Claude Levi-Strauss, Carl Van Vechten, John Lyly, William Makepeace Thackeray, Henry Fielding, Nathaniel Hawthorne, William F. Buckley, Jr.

[list adapted from Goodreads]

Roald Dahl, Matilda

The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
Nicholas Nickleby, Charles Dickens
Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
Gone to Earth, Mary Webb
Kim, Rudyard Kipling
The Invisible Man, H.G. Wells
The Old Man and the Sea, Ernest Hemingway
The Sound and the Fury, William Faulkner
The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
The Good Companions, J.B. Priestley
Brighton Rock, Graham Greene
Animal Farm, George Orwell
The Red Pony, John Steinbeck
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, C.S. Lewis
Just So Stories, Rudyard Kipling

[list from Nonsuch Book]

F. Scott Fitzgerald, This Side of Paradise

For the Honor of the School, Ralph Henry Barbour
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
The Common Law, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr.
Sapho, Alphonse Daudet
The Shooting of Dan McGrew and Other Poems, Robert W. Service
The Broad Highway, Jeffery Farnol
Three Weeks, Elinor Glyn
Mary Ware, the Little Colonel’s Chum, Annie Fellows Johnston
Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
The Kreutzer Sonata, Leo Tolstoy
The Encyclopedia Britannica
Collar and Daniell’s First Year Latin, William Coe Collar
The Beloved Vagabond, William John Locke
Sir Nigel, Arthur Conan Doyle
The White Company, Arthur Conan Doyle
Marpessa, Stephen Phillips
The Gentleman from Indiana, Booth Tarkington
New Arabian Nights, Robert Louis Stevenson
The Morals of Marcus Ordeyne, William J. Locke
The Man Who Was Thursday: A Nightmare, G. K. Chesterton
Stover at Yale, Owen Johnson
Dombey and Son, Charles Dickens
The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
The New Machiavelli, H. G. Wells
The Research Magnificent, H. G. Wells
Joan and Peter, H. G. Wells
The Undying Fire, H. G. Wells
None Other Gods, Robert Hugh Benson
Sinister Street, Compton Mackenzie
The Varieties of Religious Experience, William James
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, James Joyce
Vandover and the Brute, Frank Norris
The Damnation of Theron Ware, Harold Frederic
Jennie Gerhardt, Theodore Dreiser
Almayer’s Folly, Joseph Conrad
Arsène Lupin, Francis de Croisset and Maurice Leblanc
Mrs. Warren’s Profession, George Bernard Shaw
Faust, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
The Little Millionaire

And shorter poems:
“Come into the Garden, Maude,” Alfred, Lord Tennyson
“Locksley Hall,” Alfred, Lord Tennyson
“La Belle Dame Sans Merci,” John Keats
“Ode to a Nightingale,” John Keats
“Dolores: Notre-Dame Des Sept Douleurs,” Algernon Charles Swinburne
“Triumph of Time,” Algernon Charles Swinburne
“A Song in the Time of Order,” Algernon Charles Swinburne
“Ulalume,” Edgar Allan Poe
“Beaches of Lukanon before the sealers came,” Rudyard Kipling
“Gunga Din,” Rudyard Kipling
“Autumn Song,” Paul Verlaine
“L’Allegro,” John Milton
Shakespeare’s Sonnets

Plus the works of “Robert Chambers, David Graham Phillips, and E. Phillips Oppenheim complete,” and Edgar Allan Poe’s short story “The Fall of the House of Usher.”

Other authors mentioned include: Vachel Lindsay, Edgar Lee Masters, Lord Dunsany, J. M. Barrie, Arthur Wing Pinero, W. B. Yeats, John Millington Synge, Ernest Dowson, Arthur Symons, Hermann Sudermann, J. K. Huysmans, Walter Pater, Théophile Gautier, François Rabelais, Giovanni Boccaccio, Petronius, Suetonius, O. Henry, John Fox, Jr., Richard Harding Davis, James Whitcomb Riley, Rupert Brooke, Alexander Pope, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Paul Gerhardt, John Galsworthy, Robert Browning

Christopher Hitchens, Hitch-22

Autumn Journal, Louis MacNeice
The Earth Compels, Louis MacNeice
Kim, Rudyard Kipling
The Cherry Orchard, Anton Chekhov
Lord of the Flies, William Golding
The Bell Jar, Sylvia Plath
The Savage God, Al Alvarez
The Bridge over the River Kwai, Pierre Boulle
A Passage to India, E. M. Forster
David Blaize, Edward Frederic Benson
War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
History of the Conquest of Mexico, William H. Prescott
On the Beach, Nevil Shute
Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe
How Green Was My Valley, Richard Llewellyn
Natural Theology, William Paley
Religion and the Rise of Capitalism, R. H. Tawney
Hanged by the Neck, Arthur Koestler
Darkness at Noon, Arthur Koestler
Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky
In Flanders Field, Leon Wolff
All Quiet on the Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque
Covenant with Death, John Harris
Keep the Aspidistra Flying, George Orwell
Animal Farm, George Orwell
Nineteen Eighty-four, George Orwell
Homage to Catalonia, George Orwell
Coming up for Air, George Orwell
Birth of Our Power, Victor Serge
Men in Prison, Victor Serge
The Case of Comrade Tulayev, Victor Serge
Memoirs of a Revolutionary, Victor Serge
Reason, Faith and Revolution, Terry Eagleton
Decline and Fall, Evelyn Waugh
Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
Thank you, Jeeves, P. G. Wodehouse
Mulliner Nights, P. G. Wodehouse
The Code of The Woosters, P. G. Wodehouse
Power: A Radical View, Steven Lukes
Theatres of Memory, Raphael Samuel
Lady Chatterley’s Lover, D. H. Lawrence
Main Currents of Marxism, Leszek Kolakowski
Adolf Hitler: My Part in his Downfall, Spike Milligan
The Republic of Fear, Kanan Makiya
Cruelty and Silence, Kanan Makiya
The Monument, Kanan Makiya
The Affluent Society, John Galbraith
The Threatening Storm, Kenneth Pollack
Black Lamb and Grey Falcon, Rebecca West
Macbeth, Shakespeare
Hamlet, Shakespeare
Terminal Moraine, James Fenton
Language and Silence, George Steiner
Girl, 20, Kingsley Amis
Stanley and the Women, Kingsley Amis
Mackerel Plaza, Peter De Vries
Blood of the Lambs, Peter De Vries
Judgment of Paris, Gore Vidal
Money, Martin Amis
Yellow Dog, Martin Amis
The Rachel Papers, Martin Amis
The Power and the Glory, Graham Greene
The Human Factor, Graham Greene
The Thirty Nine Steps, Graham Greene
The Waste Land, T. S. Eliot
After Strange Gods, T. S. Eliot
The Great Terror, Robert Conquest
Dr. Zhivago, Boris Pasternak
Early Success, F. Scott Fitzgerald
Humboldt’s Gift, Saul Bellow
Ravelstein, Saul Bellow
The Adventures of Augie March, Saul Bellow
The Friends of Eddie Coyle, George V. Higgins
The Plague, Albert Camus
A Dance to the Music of Time, Anthony Powell
This Be The Verse, Philip Larkin
Going Going, Philip Larkin
First Love, Last Rites, Ian McEwan
In Between the Sheets, Ian McEwan
Faggots, Larry Kramer
Writers and Politics, Conor Cruise O’Brien
Prisoner without a Name, Cell without a Number, Jacobo Timerman
Leaves of Grass, Walt Whitman
The Loved One, Evelyn Waugh
Southern California: An Island on the Land, Carey McWilliams
The File, Penn Kimball
The Bonfire of the Vanities, Tom Wolfe
The Protestant Establishment, E. Digby Baltzell
The Company of Critics, Michael Walzer
The Raj Quartet, Paul Scott
Shame, Salman Rushdie
The Satanic Verses, Salman Rushdie
The Jaguar Smile, Salman Rushdie
Orientalism, Edward Said
Covering Islam, Edward Said
Peace and its Discontents, Edward Said
The Seven Pillars of Wisdom, T. E. Lawrence
The Culture of Islam, Lawrence Rosen
Milestones, Sayyid Qutb
The Benn Diaries, Tony Benn
Reading Lolita in Tehran, Azar Nafisi
What Is History?, E. H. Carr
The Rise of the Novel, Joseph Conrad
Typhoon, Joseph Conrad
A Dream of John Ball, William Morris
Minima Moralia, Theodor Adorno
Tortilla Flat, John Steinbeck
Persuasion, Jane Austen
Watership Down, Richard Adams
The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Graham
Microcosm, Norman Davies
The Pity of it All, Amos Elon
They Fought Back, Yuri Suhl
Resistance in the Auschwitz-Birkenau Death Camp, David Szmulewski
The Cruiser, Warren Tute
Chariots of Fire, Harold Abrahams
The Broken Compass, Peter Hitchens
Nothing to be Frightened Of, Julian Barnes
Jersey Under the Jackboot, Reginald Charles Fulke Maugham
I and Thou, Martin Buber
The Canterbury Tales, Geoffrey Chaucer
Bleak House, Charles Dickens
Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
Portnoy’s Complaint, Philip Roth
Altneuland, Theodor Herzl
Beyond a Boundary,  C. L. R. James
Minty Alley,  C. L. R. James
The Black Jacobins: Toussaint L’Ouverture and the San Domingo Revolution,  C. L. R. James

Other authors mentioned include: Jorge Luis Borges (Hitchens’s “literary hero), G. K. Chesterton, Dante, Colin MacCabe, Arthur Miller, Susan Sontag, Richard Dawkins, William Butler Yeats, Paul Cavafy, Wilfred Owen, William Safire, Gustave Flaubert, Edmund Blunden, Cesare Pavese, William Styron, C. H. Rolph, Siegfried Sassoon, Robert Graves, John Updike, Emile Zola, Oscar Wilde, W. H. Auden, W. B. Yeats, Chidiock Tichbourne, Wendy Cope, Marcel Proust, V. S. Naipaul, Naguib Mahfouz, Gertrude Bell

[this assuredly incomplete list adapted from this reddit post]

Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
This Side of Paradise, F. Scott Fitzgerald
A Separate Peace, John Knowles
Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie
The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald
The Catcher in the Rye, J. D. Salinger
On the Road, Jack Kerouac
Naked Lunch, William S. Burroughs
Walden, Henry David Thoreau
Hamlet, William Shakespeare
The Stranger, Albert Camus
The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand
The Mayor of Castro Street, Randy Shilts

Also mentioned: E. E. Cummings, Anne Rice, and the poem “A Person /A Paper /A Promise” by Dr. Earl Reum

[list from The Perks of Being a Wallflower Wiki]

Patti Smith, Just Kids

Illuminations, Arthur Rimbaud
A Season in Hell, Arthur Rimbaud
Collages, Anaïs Nin
Miracle of the Rose, Jean Genet
The Glass Menagerie, Tennessee Williams
Psychedelic Prayers, Timothy Leary
Poems a Penny Each, James Joyce
The Diary of Anne Frank, Anne Frank
Junky, William Burroughs
Ariel, Sylvia Plath
Crazy HorseThe Strange Man of the Oglalas, Mari Sandoz
The Golden Bough, James George Frazer
You Can’t Go Home Again, Thomas Wolfe
Diary of a Drug Fiend, Aleister Crowley 
Locus Solus, Raymond Roussel
The Happy Birthday of Death, Gregory Corso
Cain’s Book, Alexander Trocchi
Tarantula, Bob Dylan
Arthur Rimbaud: A Biography, Enid Starkie
Paris Spleen, Charles Baudelaire
The Quran
Women of Cairo, Gerard De Nerval
Death in Venice, Thomas Mann
The Arabian Nights
A Book of Dreams
, Peter Reich
Finnegan’s Wake, James Joyce
Songs of Innocence and Experience, William Blake
Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
The Age of Rock: No. 2, Jonathan Eisen
Les Enfants Terribles, Jean Cocteau
The Night of the Hunter, Davis Grubb (she may be talking about the film)
Foxe’s Book of Martyrs, John Foxe
The Shoes of the Fisherman, Morris West
The Red Shoes, Hans Christian Andersen
A Child’s Garden of Verses, Robert Louis Stevenson
Love on the Left Bank, Ed van der Elsken
Milton, William Blake
The Fabulous Life of Diego Rivera, Bertram D. Wolfe
The Money Game, Adam Smith
The Electric Kool-Air Acid Test, Tom Wolfe
Love and Mr. Lewisham, H. G. Wells
Zelda, Nancy Milford
Doctor Martino & Other Stories, William Faulkner
La Cavale, Albertine Sarrazin
Seventh Heaven, Patti Smith
Witt, Patti Smith
Butterfield 8, John O’Hara
Of Human Bondage, W. Somerset Maugham
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
Ulysses, James Joyce
Flowers, Robert Mapplethorpe
The Coral Sea, Patti Smith
Peter Pan, J. M. Barrie
Love Affair, Ruth Kligman

Plus George Mandel’s story “The Beckoning Sea.”

Other authors mentioned include: Frank O’Hara, Ernest Hemingway, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Maxwell Perkins, Janet Hamill, Jules Laforgue, Allen Ginsberg, Friedrich Nietzsche, Paul Verlaine, Yukio Mishima, Andre Gide, Maurice Maeterlinck, Gérard de Nerval, Bertolt Brecht, Antonin Artaud, Vladimir Mayakovsky, Dylan Thomas, Walt Whitman, Blaise Cendrars, Théophile Gautier, Henri Michaux, Thomas de Quincey, John Keats, Percy Bysshe Shelley, Gerard Malanga, Gertrude Stein, Andre Breton, Djuna Barnes, Jim Carroll, Oscar Brown Jr., Vachel Lindsay, Jack Kerouac, Homer, Herodotus, Sam Shepard, Nancy Milford, Ray Bresmer, Anne Waldman, Robert Creeley, Ted Berrigan, Albertine Sarrazin, Stéphane Mallarmé, Dave Marsh, Tony Glover, Danny Goldberg, Sandy Pearlman, Paul Bowles, Mohamed Mrabet, Albert Cossery, Isabelle Eberhardt, Richard Hell.

[list adapted from Luke Storms and Goodreads]

Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Americanah

Cane, Jean Toomer
The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain
The Fire Next Time, James Baldwin
The Heart of the Matter, Graham Greene
The End of the Affair, Graham Greene
Dreams From My Father, Barack Obama
Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
Light in August, William Faulkner
Things Fall Apart, Chinua Achebe
A Bend in the River, V. S. Naipaul

[list adapted from Multnomah County Library]

Originally published in Literary Hub.

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