A chance to prove yourself as a book nerd: The BBC Top 200 Books

Ok, so I’m a little late to jump onto the bandwagon with this. What can I say? I’m uninformed! But I thought it was interesting so I’m going to post about it anyway. Plus, if I didn’t know about it maybe some of you guys haven’t heard of it either! 🙂

In 2003 the BBC conducted a book survey to find the publics ‘best-loved novel’. They named it the Big Read. In the end they received over three quarters of a million votes. They sifted through these to create a list of the top 200.

After this, a second survey was done asking the public what they thought about the Big Read’s conclusions. From this they discovered that the majority of adults in their lifetime, hadn’t read more than six of the books on the list.

So; now is your chance to prove yourself as a fully fledged book nerd!!!

 Below is the list of the Top 200 books. I’m proud to say that I’ve read 24 of the books on the list, about to be 25 once I finish Pride and Prejudice and since technically, I’m not classed as an adult yet, I’m pretty proud of myself!

The books I’ve read are: Lord of the Rings. His Dark Materials. all the Harry Potter books, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, Wuthering Heights, The Hobbit, The story of Tracy Beaker, Of Mice and Men, Noughts And Crosses, Stormbreaker, The Illustrated Mum, Bad Girls, Lola Rose, Angus, Thongs And Full-Frontal Snogging, Girls In Tears, Sleepovers, Secrets, Girls out Late, Dustbin Baby, Vicky Angel and The very hungry caterpillar.

Check out the top 200 for yourself! How many books have you read on the list?
Leave a comment and let me know! 🙂

P.S. Do you actually believe all of these are the publics favorite books? Or do you think some of them have just been named because their the politically correct ones to name? I have my doubts……

Top 200

1. The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien
2. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
3. His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman
4. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling
6. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
7. Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne
8. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
9. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis
10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë
11. Catch-22, Joseph Heller
12. Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
13. Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
14. Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
15. The Catcher in the Rye, JD Salinger
16. The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
17. Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
18. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
19. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres
20. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
21. Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
22. Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone, JK Rowling
23. Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling
24. Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling
25. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
26. Tess Of The D’Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
27. Middlemarch, George Eliot
28. A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving
29. The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck
30. Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
31. The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
32. One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez
33. The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
34. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
35. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
36. Treasure Island, Robert Louis Stevenson
7. A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
38. Persuasion, Jane Austen
39. Dune, Frank Herbert
40. Emma, Jane Austen
41. Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery
42. Watership Down, Richard Adams
43. The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
44. The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
45. Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
46. Animal Farm, George Orwell
47. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens
48. Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
49. Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
50. The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher
51. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
52. Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck
53. The Stand, Stephen King
54. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
55. A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
56. The BFG, Roald Dahl
57. Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome
58. Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
59. Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
60. Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
61. Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
62. Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden Read
63. A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
64. The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
65. Mort, Terry Pratchett
66. The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton
67. The Magus, John Fowles
68. Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
69. Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett
70. Lord Of The Flies, William Golding – Wishlist
71. Perfume, Patrick Süskind
72. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
73. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett
74. Matilda, Roald Dahl
75. Bridget Jones’s Diary, Helen Fielding
76. The Secret History, Donna Tartt
77. The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins
78. Ulysses, James Joyce
79. Bleak House, Charles Dickens
80. Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson
81. The Twits, Roald Dahl
82. I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith
83. Holes, Louis Sachar
84. Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake
85. The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy
86. Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson
87. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
88. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
89. Magician, Raymond E Feist
90. On The Road, Jack Kerouac
91. The Godfather, Mario Puzo
92. The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
93. The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett
94. The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
95. Katherine, Anya Seton
96. Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer
97. Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel García Márquez
98. Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson
99. The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot
100. Midnight’s Children, Salman Rushdie
101. Three Men In A Boat, Jerome K. Jerome
102. Small Gods, Terry Pratchett
103. The Beach, Alex Garland
104. Dracula, Bram Stoker
105. Point Blanc, Anthony Horowitz
106. The Pickwick Papers, Charles Dickens
107. Stormbreaker, Anthony Horowitz
108. The Wasp Factory, Iain Banks
109. The Day Of The Jackal, Frederick Forsyth
110. The Illustrated Mum, Jacqueline Wilson
111. Jude The Obscure, Thomas Hardy
112. The Secret Diary Of Adrian Mole Aged 13¾, Sue Townsend
113. The Cruel Sea, Nicholas Monsarrat
114. Les Misérables, Victor Hugo
115. The Mayor Of Casterbridge, Thomas Hardy
116. The Dare Game, Jacqueline Wilson
117. Bad Girls, Jacqueline Wilson
118. The Picture Of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde
119. Shogun, James Clavell
120. The Day Of The Triffids, John Wyndham
121. Lola Rose, Jacqueline Wilson
122. Vanity Fair, William Makepeace Thackeray
123. The Forsyte Saga, John Galsworthy
124. House Of Leaves, Mark Z. Danielewski
125. The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver
126. Reaper Man, Terry Pratchett
127. Angus, Thongs And Full-Frontal Snogging, Louise Rennison
128. The Hound Of The Baskervilles, Arthur Conan Doyle
129. Possession, A. S. Byatt
130. The Master And Margarita, Mikhail Bulgakov
131. The Handmaid’s Tale, Margaret Atwood
132. Danny The Champion Of The World, Roald Dahl
133. East Of Eden, John Steinbeck
134. George’s Marvellous Medicine, Roald Dahl
135. Wyrd Sisters, Terry Pratchett
136. The Color Purple, Alice Walker
137. Hogfather, Terry Pratchett
138. The Thirty-Nine Steps, John Buchan
139. Girls In Tears, Jacqueline Wilson
140. Sleepovers, Jacqueline Wilson
141. All Quiet On The Western Front, Erich Maria Remarque
142. Behind The Scenes At The Museum, Kate Atkinson
143. High Fidelity, Nick Hornby
144. It, Stephen King
145. James And The Giant Peach, Roald Dahl
146. The Green Mile, Stephen King
147. Papillon, Henri Charriere
148. Men At Arms, Terry Pratchett
149. Master And Commander, Patrick O’Brian
150. Skeleton Key, Anthony Horowitz
151. Soul Music, Terry Pratchett
152. Thief Of Time, Terry Pratchett
153. The Fifth Elephant, Terry Pratchett
154. Atonement, Ian McEwan – Wishlist
155. Secrets, Jacqueline Wilson
156. The Silver Sword, Ian Serraillier
157. One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest, Ken Kesey
158. Heart Of Darkness, Joseph Conrad
159. Kim, Rudyard Kipling
160. Cross Stitch, Diana Gabaldon
161. Moby Dick, Herman Melville
162. River God, Wilbur Smith
163. Sunset Song, Lewis Grassic Gibbon
164. The Shipping News, Annie Proulx
165. The World According To Garp, John Irving
166. Lorna Doone, R. D. Blackmore
167. Girls Out Late, Jacqueline Wilson
168. The Far Pavilions, M. M. Kaye
169. The Witches, Roald Dahl
170. Charlotte’s Web, E. B. White
171. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
172. They Used To Play On Grass, Terry Venables and Gordon Williams
173. The Old Man And The Sea, Ernest Hemingway
174. The Name Of The Rose, Umberto Eco
175. Sophie’s World, Jostein Gaarder
176. Dustbin Baby, Jacqueline Wilson
177. Fantastic Mr Fox, Roald Dahl
178. Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
179. Jonathan Livingstone Seagull, Richard Bach
180. The Little Prince, Antoine De Saint-Exupery
181. The Suitcase Kid, Jacqueline Wilson
182. Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens
183. The Power Of One, Bryce Courtenay
184. Silas Marner, George Eliot
185. American Psycho, Bret Easton Ellis
186. The Diary Of A Nobody, George and Weedon Grossmith
187. Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh
188. Goosebumps, R. L. Stine
189. Heidi, Johanna Spyri
190. Sons And Lovers, D. H. LawrenceLife of Lawrence
191. The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera
192. Man And Boy, Tony Parsons
193. The Truth, Terry Pratchett
194. The War Of The Worlds, H. G. Wells
195. The Horse Whisperer, Nicholas Evans
196. A Fine Balance, Rohinton Mistry
197. Witches Abroad, Terry Pratchett
198. The Once And Future King, T. H. White
199. The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Eric Carle
200. Flowers In The Attic, Virginia Andrews

Happy reading my fellow book nerds out there! 🙂

19 thoughts on “A chance to prove yourself as a book nerd: The BBC Top 200 Books

  1. I’ve read 55.5 (I’m counting 700 pages of War and Peace as half a book, because it should count for something!).

    I think that some of the books on the list are a bit dated, in the sense that they were bestsellers during the early 2000s. I’m also seeing a lot of childhood nostalgia books. 😛

    • Wow, well done thats pretty impressive! 🙂
      Aha, yeah I noticed that as well, there’s a lot of Jacqueline Wilson, I read pretty much all of her books when I was younger, I was obsessed!
      I agree, they are quite dated, in fact, there’s quite a few on there I’ve never heard of! 🙂

    • Me too! Like Dracula, and some more of the Jane Austen books. Ahh, so your about the same as me then *sends you a high five via the web* 🙂

  2. I’ve only read 26, but I’ve been an adult for awhile now so well done for reading so many while you are still a young ‘un!! 🙂

    Is it me, or are there too many Terry Pratchett books on this list? I’m also slightly annoyed that my two favourite books (No. 128 and 104) were beaten by Bleak House which was so incredibly tedious and boring! And Oliver Twist at 182? That should be in the top 20 at least…okay I’m ranting now, sorry 😛

    • Aha, thank you 🙂 26 is still good though so congrats! 🙂
      There are, by far too many Terry Pratchett books on there, lol, and too much Charles Dickens for my taste. I am however, extremely happy with the winner, J.R.R Tolkien, I couldn’t imagine anyone else getting the top spot!
      It’s interesting how Oliver Twist would be in your top 20, because I absolutley can’t stand that book, haha! I don’t know why, in fact, just Dickens in general I can’t stand, I know loads of people love his work but I just can’t get on with it. Im curious, what is it you like so much about Oliver Twist? 🙂

      • I think this is where we differ because I cant stand Jane Austen! LOL! I prefer Elizabeth Gaskell who is regarded as her contemporary and who is surprisingly not on this list!

        I know Dickens can be boring sometimes but I love his sarcastic social commentary.
        I luuurve Victorian literature(if you didn’t guess by now 😉 ), and the depictions of the contrasting lower, middle and upper classes fascinates me.
        Dickens was so passionate about exposing the seedy and less attractive qualities of English society and I thought he did it so well in OT. Yes, he can be quite sentimental sometimes but I admire that passion with which he writes.
        OT is not my favourite though; Christmas Carol is definitely his best work! 🙂

      • Oooh I’ve never heard of Elizabeth Gaskell, I shall definitely have to check her out I’m not completely decided on Jane Austen yet, I tried to read Sense and Sensibility when I was a bit younger and couldn’t get on with it, I much prefered Wuthering Heights, but at the moment I am quite enjoying Pride and Prejudice so
        Interesting, the way you describe it makes it sound much more interesting than I found it when I read it! Haha. Although, I do think my judgement on Oliver Twist was clouded somewhat by the fact we had to do it in English class and write a piece of coursework on it, but if I had read it for another reason I still don’t think I would have been that keen on it… very, very interesting

  3. I’ve read 43. Some were surprising and I saw by that Jacqueline Wilson whose books I’ve never read or really heard of which was surprising.
    I’ll be honest, about ten of the ones I’ve read were Roald Dahl books…

    • Oooh well done, I think that definitely means you qualify as a fully fledged book nerd! 🙂
      Really? You’ve never heard of Jacqueline Wilson? I couldn’t escape from Jacquline Wilson when I was younger, they were in every book store, library and school lol.
      Aha, thats fair enough, most of the ones I’ve read are from the same author 🙂 I’ve never actually read a Roald Dahl book, which you may find suprizing, I don’t really know why, I guess I just never really came across them like you didn’t come across Jacqueline Wilson. Are they any good?

      • Oh Becky you have to read Roald Dahl’s Matilda. Unless you have the emotional intelligence of a brick wall, this book will not fail to have an impact on you. I’ve yet to meet someone who didn’t think that book was awesome! 🙂

      • Aha, ok I will! I remember seeing the film and thinking it was good but as we all know films very rarely compare to the books 🙂

      • Haha how bizarre! We both dont know each others authors! I loved Roald Dahl when I was growing up, his books were a bit whimsical and weird but they always had their heart in the right place! Plus they were full of imagination. As a kid who didn’t want to go to Willy Wonka’s factory, or fly away in a bit peach?
        What does Jacqueline Wilson write about?

      • Cool 🙂 Jacqueline Wilson always writes about young girls and life changes they might be going through, like grief, parents divorce, being adopted, losing a best friend, that sort of thing. A huge amount of them revolve aroud parental issues. She has a really great writing style that makes her books so easy to read, and before you know it, you’ve finished the entire book 🙂

    • Well done! Your pretty much the same as me then. 🙂 For the sake of this post we’ll say the Roald Dahl books in question definitely count 😉

  4. I’ve only read 37 on this list. I’m quite shocked that A Tree Grows In Brooklyn, anything by Edgar Allen Poe or The Diary of Anne Frank weren’t on here. Unless I missed them.

    • Thats excellent well done 🙂 Thats so true, I think the Diary of Anne Frank should be on here, such a inspirational and emotional tale with so much history behind it.
      Thanks for commenting 🙂

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