Recently a ‘tag’ started on the social media site Facebook, it was a re-hash of an older tag, about naming your top 10 books. In the tag rules it was specifically mentioned that the books one names need not be literary works of great repute and one one wasn’t supposed to spend more than a few minutes on coming up with the names. I found many such tag posts on my news feed, some had names of books I had heard and read, while others contained names of books I had to Google. I am not judging anyone over the names they posted but I also know on some level everyone was judging everyone else, including me. Yes, I wrote that I wasn’t judging anyone, but was I so capable of being non-judgemental? I don’t think so. The truth is I was a bit surprised at my own lack of straight forwardness when posting on this tag. I am not one of those people who can pretend that I cannot select 10 books out of my limited reading list. I can, simply because its not a legal announcement I am making with an affidavit, I am merely talking about some choices, which may or may not change the next time someone asks me.
All said and done, I wrote down the first 10 names that came to mind and soon realized they didn’t make the cut. They were mostly books which were part of my curriculum since school days and I enjoyed reading them primarily because they were explained to me and I researched enough on them. They weren’t a surprise, they weren’t out of the ordinary. Then I tried naming another 10 books which weren’t a part of my academic studies, that turned out to be a bust too, because then I found I had pretty much named my favorite kind of easy to read fiction and with a bias to Indians writing in English, which has been my soft spot for years.
Ultimately, I came up with this list which seemed to me somewhat balanced, non biased and definitely worthy of me as a Student of Literature.
1. Rajkahini by Abonindranath Thakur
2. The Hitchikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams
3. The Mousetrap by Agatha Christie
4. The Alchemist by Paulo Cohelo
5. An Equal Music by Vikram Seth
6. To kill a mocking bird by Harper Lee
7. The Lord of the Rings by Tolkien
8. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie
9. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
10. The Curious case of the dog in the night time by Mark Haddon
It was a coincidence that around this time I decided to blog about some books that I have read. In case you have read my post about the upcoming regular series. So, that’s when I figured, if I was going to be such a prude about getting the right names out in the social media – on a tag [ a silly one, soon to be forgotten], I might as well, write about these books which I think make me look good – read balanced & non biased & intellectual & having a taste for different kinds of literary works etc.
So, the series on books will – I will try and attempt these- be based on the top ten of my favorite books. And may be once I am through with this list, I can share with my readers the other 2 lists I made, the academic one and the easy read fiction one. Till then wish me luck.