IT’S a debate sure to dwarf Brexit! Which books must you read before you die?
The Independent has come up with 40 suggestions to kick off what is bound to be a lively argument. Journalists Ceri Radford and Chris Harvey have bravely put together the list to prime the literary canon. Follow their suggested journey and you will travel from Jane Austen͛’s well-mannered drawing rooms to the airless tower blocks of 1984. Along the way you will call in at George Eliot’s small English town of Middlemarch in the 1830s and (100 years later) Harper Lee’s desperately racist southern American states during the depression as described in To Kill a Mockingbird.
You will meet Sue Townsend’s pimply Adrian Mole as he faces up to adolescence; the bumbling aristocrat Bertie Wooster with his omniscient butler, Jeeves; and then there’s the monstrous Frankenstein.
So many to choose from – and so little time! But here’s the critical point made in the article: reading books will make you live longer! The claim made is that it will lower stress, boost intelligence and even give you fuller, thicker hair!
The article adds: “Whatever the breathless claims about reading, one thing is certain: losing yourself in a great novel is one of life’s most enduring and dependable joys. Job satisfaction comes and goes, partners enrapture and abscond, but you can always fall back on the timeless ability of literature to transport you to a different world.”
We will add £10 to the loyalty card (free at the shop) of the customer who submits what we (the combined staff) consider to be the best top five books to read before you die. Simply email your list in order of preference to:
We will make our decision at the end of April 2019 and announce the result here on the website.