My top ten favourite novels

See Getting personal: A few top ten lists for the background on this series of top ten posts (this is the third post in the series).

Believe it or not, I really like getting away from the computer. I am not the kind of person who likes to spend every waking hour in front of the computer screen. I read a lot of Web related non-fiction books as you can tell by the book reviews I post here, but to really relax I read fiction. Mostly science fiction, horror, fantasy, that sort of thing.

So here is a list of my current favourite novels/novel series. The list is ordered alphabetically, which means I have not ranked these books. Picking only ten is hard enough as it is.

Like the other lists in this series, what’s on this list is always changing, though not as frequently as the music related lists.

Now it’s your turn – which are your ten favourite novels or novel series? If you want to share, do so either by posting a comment with your list or by posting a link to your own blog.

Posted on July 9, 2007 in Life


  1. July 9, 2007 by Micke

    I’m reading “A Short History of Nearly Everything” right now and loving every word. Definitely top 10 material so far.

  2. July 9, 2007 by Johan

    A good book I read in 2007.

    In the bubble Designing in a complex world by John Tackara (MIT Press)

  3. 1984 by George Orwell; my favorite book of all times.

  4. Anything by Douglas Coupland. Also Ben Okri and Annie Dillard.

    I used to read a lot of Sci-fi when I was younger, pretty much any Frank Herbert stuff, the Dune series but also his other books.

  5. I got really excited by your first two pics: I’m a huge Bryson fan, having read most of his books. I actually listened to “Nearly Everything” on CD while driving cross-country. A huge “Gunslinger” fan too, with all the books and the compendiums.

    I read “Rama II” when younger out of a pile of books. And most of the entire Stephen King catalog.

  6. I got “A Short History of Everything” as a gift a couple of months back and it really is an amazing read!

    Another favourite of mine is “How to be Idle” by Tom Hodgkinson.

  7. Right now my main course it criminal fiction and I have discovered a lot of really good authors thanks to “Låna och läs” from Bokia.

    As most of the books are in some sorts of series I will only list the authors:

    • Åsa Larsson (about Rebecka Martinsson)

    • Jeffrey Deaver (about Lincoln Rhyme and Amelia Sachs)

    • Arne Dahl (about the “A-group”)

    • Arnaldur Indridason

    • Camilla Läckberg (still looking for the time to start reading the latest book “Tyskungen”)

    • Jo Nesbø (about Harry Hole)

    • Dan Brown

    I also read the triology about Alexander the Great by Valerio Massimo Manfredi … very good!

  8. July 10, 2007 by Grant

    Have you read Peter Hamilton’s “Fallen Angel”? Just as brilliant as Night’s Dawn and The Commonwealth Saga.

  9. July 10, 2007 by Mark Shields

    A fellow King and Asimov fan! I’d have to put “Needful Things” near the top of my list:

    Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand The Fountainhead, Ayn Rand Needful Things, Stephen King The Foundation Trilogy, Isaac Asimov Any collection of short stories by Philip K. Dick 1984, George Orwell It, Stephen King A Wrinkle in Time, Madeleine L’Engle Angels and Demons, Dan Brown

  10. excellent post. The Dice Man is a great book. I read a lot too, it’s a great way to wind down after a busy day. A few of my mates also have a book group which gives us an extra excuse!

    some recent excellent reads, and old faves..

    • Donna Tartt, The Secret History (utterly compelling, prob my all time favourite book)
    • William Boyd, Restless (won the Costa Novel prize this year)
    • Zadie Smith, On Beauty
    • Ian McEwan, Atonement, and Enduring Love
    • Jonathan Franzen, The Corrections
    • Wilkie Collins, The Woman in White
    • Ian Fleming, From Russia with Love (suprisingly excellent - much like the film)
    • Philip Pullman, His Dark Materials trilogy: The Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife, The Amber Spyglass
    • J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings (inevitable, but a wonderful epic)
    • Terry Pratchett, Guards Guards (because he makes me laugh!)
  11. Some all time favourites:

    • Umberto Eco - Foucault’s Pendulum
    • Bret Easton Ellis - American Psycho
    • Neil Gaiman - Neverwhere, Stardust
    • Mark Haddon - The Curious Incident of the Dog In The Night Time
    • Roddy Doyle - Paddy Clarke, Ha, Ha, Ha
    • Ian Banks - The Crow Road (anything by him, also see next line…)
    • Ian M Banks - Culture novels - if you like sci fi you should check out his stuff
    • Tolkien - LOTR trilogy
    • Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series
    • The Rama series by Arthur C. Clarke
    • Time’s eye, Sunstorm - A Time Odyssey series, Arthur C. Clarke
    • Foundation trilogy, also the prelude and final foundation series by Isaac Asimov
    • the Godfather, Mario Puzo
    • Inca Gold or any of the Dirk Pitt novels by Clive Cussler
    • Hitchhikers guide to the Galaxy (all five books), Douglas Adams
    • LOTR trilogy, J.R.R Tolkien
    • e=mc2 - A Biography of the World’s Most Famous Equation, David Bodanis
    • A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson
    • the Templars, Piers Paul Read

    No particular order on the books. Some of the books are old and maybe I would not place them on the list if I would read them now. But they have a place on my list according to how I appreciated them att the time. I’m also a SF reader, I used to read fantasy, but got a bit tired of that genre.

  12. You want only 10? 10 authors would be easier… But will try anyway!

    • Notes from a Small Country (Bill Bryson - just to be different! Everything he writes is good though)
    • The Solitaire Mystery (Jostein Gaarder)
    • The Time-Traveller’s Wife (Audrey Niffeneger)
    • Night’s Dawn/Confederation series (Peter F Hamilton - the Confederation Handbook is a nice extra, and the short stories work well too)
    • Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell (Susanna Clarke)
    • Neverwhere (Neil Gaiman - again, generally good)
    • The Truth (Terry Pratchett - ditto)
    • Revelation Space series (Alistair Reynolds)
    • Legends (edited by Robert Silverburg - bunch of short-story/novella length pieces by various names in fantasy)
    • Cryptonomicon (Neal Stephenson)
  13. I enjoyed Eon by Greg Bear. Have you read Hyperion by Dan Simmons?

    • Memoirs of a geisha - Arthur Golden

    • De Metsiers - Hugo Claus

    • De Journalist - David Ignatius

    • Pride And Prejudice - Jane Austen

    • Inca Gold - Clive Cussler

    • Character - Ferdinand Bordewijk

    • Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte

  14. I like everything of Colin Dexter (you know: Inspector Morse series on TV were done on his stories). Now i’m looking for something just a good. May be anybody have some suggestions asap? Go away for a week to the comptuterless world you know:D

    • Der Process - Franz Kafka
    • 1984 - George Orwell
    • Todos os Nomes - José Saramago
    • Rayuela - Julio Cortazár
    • Pulp - Charles Bukowski
    • Cien Años de Soledad - Gabriel García Márquez
    • Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
    • Memórias Póstumas de Brás Cubas - Machado de Assis
    • O Púlcaro Búlgaro - Campos de Carvalho
    • Naked Lunch - William S. Burroughs
    1. JRR Tolkien: Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Silmarillion

    2. AC Doyle: Sherlock Holmes (56 short stories plus 4 novels)

    3. A lot of Stephen King’s books

    4. Maurice Leblanc: the “Arsene Lupin” series (all of them)

    5. Jules Verne: most of his books

    6. G Rodari: There was two times a baron Lamberto

    7. And many, many, many, many, many more :)

  15. That’s nice to see, I’ve just received “A short History of Nearly Everything” to read while I’m on vacation, now I’m sure it’s a great book!

    So.. my favourites, I’m not exactly sure but I enjoyed Lord of the Rings, most novels by Dan Brown and also a series of books about Ceasar and the Roman empire, don’t know the titles anymore.

  16. July 12, 2007 by Doug

    In no particular order:

    • Blood Meridian, Cormac McCarthy
    • The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle, Haruki Murakami
    • Trainspotting, Irvine Welsh
    • A Clockwork Orange, Anthony Burgess
    • Dune, Frank Herbert
    • Vurt, Jeff Noon
    • Secret History, Donna Tartt
    • The Plague, Albert Camus
    • Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoevsky
    • Gravity’s Rainbow, Thomas Pynchon
  17. July 12, 2007 by Robert Huhn

    Hmm mine changes a lot too so here are some Authors:

    1. Neil Gaimen: Anasi Boys, American Gods, Good Omens with;

    2. Terry Pratchett:Thud, Guards Guards!, Wee Free Men, Truckers trilogy (I was a kid when I discovered this stuff)

    3. Neal Stephenson: Snow Crash, Zodiac, Big U

    4. William Gibson:Burning Chrome(short stories collection), Pattern Recognition, All Tomorrow’s Parties

    5. Chuck Palahniuk: Fight Club, Choke

    6. Walter Jon Williams:Angel Station, Metropolis+City on Fire, Aristoi, Ten Points for Style(collection of 3 novels)

    7. Charles De Lint:pretty much anything I’ve gotten my hands on

    8. Melissa Scott: Trouble and Her Friends, Dreaming Metal

    9. Charles Stross: Atrocity Archives, Accelerondo, Singularity Sky

    10. Lois McMaster Bujold:Vorkosigan Series

    theres more but I can’t think of any atm

  18. Cool list. Love Greg Bear. But I’m wondering how you define “novel,” as the first item on your list is non-fiction.

  19. July 13, 2007 by Daniel

    In no order of preference (except the first two all-time favourites):

    The Go-Between by L.P. Hartley, The Magus by John Fowles, The Crying Game by John Braine, Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh, The Alexandria Quartet by Lawrence Durrell, Memento Mori by Muriel Spark, The Possession by A.S. Byatt, Felicia’s Journey by William Trevor, The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien, The Case of Charles Dexter Ward by H.P. Lovecraft

  20. It looks like you are a great fan of stephen king. I was searching for some CSS tables and found this post of yours by chance.

    In real I am also very much interested in literature and novels.

    I mostly read thrillers but don’t get much time nowadays due to web development work.

    Thanks buddy for making me reminding me that I still love my novel reading days and I miss that cozy bed a lot.

  21. I love the book IT, but I think they have really cocked up the film it is not at all good.

  22. Great list!!! To my opinion I can add: 11. The Shining by Stephen King 12. Lord of the Rings by Tolkien

    What do you think?

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