Random Top Ten
Random Top Ten!
Top Ten Novels
My favorite novels, the stack that would remain if I had to winnow my library down to just ten novels, no more, no less:
10. Red Mars, Kim Stanley Robinson – Hard, epic science fiction that made me believe, not just that we might colonize Mars someday, but that we already had.
9. Never Let Me Go, Kashiro Iguro – A chilling, remarkably subtle portrayal of a not-to-distant future.
8. The Poisonwood Bible, Barbara Kingsolver – A virtuoso display of research and narrative control, with four sisters alternately telling the story of their families missionary move to Africa.
7. The Stand, Stephen King – Still the high-water mark of apocalyptic fiction.
6. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, Michael Chabon – A sweet, wildly entertaining, funny, sad tale of brother comic book artists making their mark in the golden age of the industry.
5. The Green Mile, Stephen King – King’s Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption is easily his finest novella, and this close to his finest novel – how long before he goes back to the prison well?
4. Watership DownA>, Richard Adams – It’s a cliché at this point to insist that this novel about a community of bunny rabbits is brilliant and insanely gripping. But it is.
3. A Prayer for Owen Meany, John Irving – Irving’s best, a hilarious and off-kilter tale of a fated disabled young boy. Maybe top on my list of books I’ve only read once but need to read again.
2. The Known World, Edward P. Jones – I’ve read the number one book below six times, and it’s long been my go-to favorite-ever novel. And yet I seriously considered putting this first. It’s only a few years old and I’ve already read it twice – and I certainly will read it again.
1. It, Stephen King – King’s statement novel, the one that puts in one place all of his main themes and preoccupations. At nearly 1,200 pages, it should feel bloated, but the logical and sturdy structure keeps it from feeling so.