The novels everyone should read, according to top book lists and prizes


As much as we writers of the 21st Century like to believe the Internet will explode ‘the canon’ or render it obsolete, we keep coming back to these fun little lists. 10 best..., 3 favorite..., etc.

They’re so shareable! And great to argue over!

So, here’s another one: “The Novels Everyone Should Read.”

Lifehacker has posted a word cloud with all the books they think you should’ve read by now, ranked according to accolades the books have received (prizes and list appearances), including the Pulitzer Prize, National Review, Time, Times Literary Supplement, Goodreads, Library Thing, Guardian, and others.

And for those of you who’d at least like to slice up the canon, you can filter the list by author, gender, and nationality. Check out the word cloud at Lifehacker, or view the “Books Everyone Should Read” spreadsheet via Google.

Do you agree with this list? What did they leave off? Let us know in the comments below.

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Chris Robley is an award-winning poet, songwriter, performer, and music producer who now lives in Portland, Maine after more than a decade in Portland, Oregon. His music has been praised by NPR, the LA Times, the Boston Globe, and others. Skyscraper Magazine said he is “one of the best short-story musicians to come along in quite some time.” Robley’s poetry has been published or is forthcoming in POETRY, Prairie Schooner, Poetry Northwest, Beloit Poetry Journal, RHINO, Magma Poetry, and more. He is the 2013 winner of Boulevard's Poetry Prize for Emerging Writers and the 2014 recipient of a Maine Literary Award in the category of "Short Works Poetry."


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