100 Essential Books by Bravo! Magazine

The Brazilian cultural magazine Bravo! selects 100 essential books.

  1. 1. The Iliad by Homer

    Image of The Iliad

    The Iliad is an epic poem in dactylic hexameters, traditionally attributed to Homer. Set in the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of Ilium by a coalition of Greek states, it tells of the battles and e...


  2. 2. The Odyssey by Homer

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    The Odyssey is one of two major ancient Greek epic poems attributed to Homer. It is, in part, a sequel to the Iliad, the other work traditionally ascribed to Homer. The poem is fundamental to the m...


  3. 3. Hamlet by William Shakespeare

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    The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, or more simply Hamlet, is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written between 1599 and 1601. The play, set in Denmark, recounts how Pri...


  4. 4. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes

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    Alonso Quixano, a retired country gentleman in his fifties, lives in an unnamed section of La Mancha with his niece and a housekeeper. He has become obsessed with books of chivalry, and believes th...


  5. 5. The Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri

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    Belonging in the immortal company of the great works of literature, Dante Alighieri's poetic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy, is a moving human drama, an unforgettable visionary journey through the ...


  6. 6. In Search of Lost Time by Marcel Proust

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    Swann's Way, the first part of A la recherche de temps perdu, Marcel Proust's seven-part cycle, was published in 1913. In it, Proust introduces the themes that run through the entire work. The narr...


  7. 7. Ulysses by James Joyce

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    Ulysses chronicles the passage of Leopold Bloom through Dublin during an ordinary day, June 16, 1904. The title parallels and alludes to Odysseus (Latinised into Ulysses), the hero of Homer's Odyss...


  8. 8. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

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    Epic in scale, War and Peace delineates in graphic detail events leading up to Napoleon's invasion of Russia, and the impact of the Napoleonic era on Tsarist society, as seen through the eyes of fi...


  9. 9. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

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    It is a murder story, told from a murder;s point of view, that implicates even the most innocent reader in its enormities. It is a cat-and-mouse game between a tormented young killer and a cheerful...


  10. 10. Essays by Michel de Montaigne

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    Essays is the title given to a collection of 107 essays written by Michel de Montaigne that was first published in 1580. Montaigne essentially invented the literary form of essay, a short subjectiv...


  11. 11. Oedipus the King by Sophocles

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    Oedipus the King is an Athenian tragedy by Sophocles that was first performed c. 429 BC. It was the second of Sophocles's three Theban plays to be produced, but it comes first in the internal chron...


  12. 12. Othello by William Shakespeare

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    Othello, the Moor of Venice is a tragedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written in approximately 1603, and based on the Italian short story "Un Capitano Moro" ("A Moorish Captain") b...


  13. 13. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert

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    For daring to peer into the heart of an adulteress and enumerate its contents with profound dispassion, the author of Madame Bovary was tried for "offenses against morality and religion." What shoc...


  14. 14. Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

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    Johann Wolfgang von Goethe's Faust is a tragic play, although more appropriately it should be defined a tragicomedy, despite the very title of the work. It was published in two parts: Faust. Der Tr...


  15. 15. The Trial by Franz Kafka

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    Written in 1914, The Trial is one of the most important novels of the twentieth century: the terrifying tale of Josef K., a respectable bank officer who is suddenly and inexplicably arrested and mu...


  16. 16. Doctor Faustus by Thomas Mann

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    Doctor Faustus is a German novel written by Thomas Mann, begun in 1943 and published in 1947 as Doktor Faustus: Das Leben des deutschen Tonsetzers Adrian Leverkühn, erzählt von einem Freunde ("Doct...


  17. 17. The Flowers of Evil by Charles Baudelaire

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    Les Fleurs du mal (English: The Flowers of Evil) is a volume of French poetry by Charles Baudelaire. First published in 1857 (see 1857 in poetry), it was important in the symbolist and modernist mo...


  18. 18. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

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    The Sound and the Fury is set in the fictional Yoknapatawpha County. The novel centers on the Compson family, former Southern aristocrats who are struggling to deal with the dissolution of their fa...


  19. 19. The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot

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    The Waste Land is a 434 line modernist poem by T. S. Eliot published in 1922. It has been called "one of the most important poems of the 20th century." Despite the alleged obscurity of the poem – i...


  20. 20. The Theogony by Hesiod

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    Hesiod's straightforward account of family conflict among the gods is the best and earliest evidence of what the ancient Greeks believed about the beginning of the world.

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  21. 21. Metamorphoses by Ovid

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    The Metamorphoses by the Roman poet Ovid is a narrative poem in fifteen books that describes the creation and history of the world. Completed in 8 AD, it has remained one of the most popular works ...


  22. 22. The Red and the Black by Stendhal

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    Le Rouge et le Noir (The Red and the Black), subtitled Chronique du XIXe siécle ("Chronicle of the 19th century"), is an historical psychological novel in two volumes by Stendhal, published in 1830...


  23. 23. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

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    The novel chronicles an era that Fitzgerald himself dubbed the "Jazz Age". Following the shock and chaos of World War I, American society enjoyed unprecedented levels of prosperity during the "roar...


  24. 24. A Season in Hell by Arthur Rimbaud

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    "With skill and imagination, Bertrand Mathieu gives us an intimacy of the spoken American that allows readers to absorb themselves in Rimbaud's private drama as in an obsessive dream of our own.......

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  25. 25. Les Misérables by Victor Hugo

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    Les Misérables is a novel by French author Victor Hugo and is widely considered one of the greatest novels of the 19th century. It follows the lives and interactions of several French characters ov...


  26. 26. The Stranger by Albert Camus

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    Since it was first published in English, in 1946, Albert Camus's extraordinary first novel, The Stranger (L'Etranger), has had a profound impact on millions of American readers. Through this story ...


  27. 27. Medea by Euripides

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    Medea is an ancient Greek tragedy written by Euripides, based upon the myth of Jason and Medea and first produced in 431 BC. The plot centers on the barbarian protagonist as she finds her position ...


  28. 28. The Aeneid by Virgil

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    The Aeneid is a Latin epic poem written by Virgil in the late 1st century BC (29–19 BC) that tells the legendary story of Aeneas, a Trojan who traveled to Italy, where he became the ancestor of the...


  29. 29. Twelfth Night: Or, What You Will by William Shakespeare

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    Twelfth Night; or, What You Will is a comedy by William Shakespeare, believed to have been written around 1601–02 as a Twelfth Night's entertainment for the close of the Christmas season. The play ...

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  30. 30. A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

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    The novel is told through the point of view of Lieutenant Frederic Henry, an American serving as an ambulance driver in the Italian army during World War I.


  31. 31. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad

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    The story details an incident when Marlow, an Englishman, took a foreign assignment from a Belgian trading company as a ferry-boat captain in Africa. Although Conrad does not specify the name of th...


  32. 32. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

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    Set in the London of AD 2540 (632 A.F. in the book), the novel anticipates developments in reproductive technology and sleep-learning that combine to change society. The future society is an embod...


  33. 33. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf

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    Created from two short stories, "Mrs Dalloway in Bond Street" and the unfinished "The Prime Minister", the novel's story is of Clarissa's preparations for a party of which she is to be hostess. Wit...


  34. 34. Moby Dick by Herman Melville

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    First published in 1851, Melville's masterpiece is, in Elizabeth Hardwick's words, "the greatest novel in American literature." The saga of Captain Ahab and his monomaniacal pursuit of the white wh...


  35. 35. The Complete Tales and Poems of Edgar Allan Poe by Edgar Allan Poe

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    Edgar Allan Poe (January 19, 1809 – October 7, 1849) was an American writer, poet, editor and literary critic, considered part of the American Romantic Movement. Best known for his tales of mystery...


  36. 36. The Human Comedy by Honoré de Balzac

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    La Comédie humaine (French pronunciation: ​[la kɔmedi ymɛn], The Human Comedy) is the title of Honoré de Balzac's (1799–1850) multi-volume collection of interlinked novels and stories depicting Fre...

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  37. 37. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

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    Great Expectations is written in the genre of "bildungsroman" or the style of book that follows the story of a man or woman in their quest for maturity, usually starting from childhood and ending i...


  38. 38. The Man Without Qualities by Robert Musil

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    The Man without Qualities (1930-42) is a novel in three books by the Austrian novelist and essayist Robert Musil. The main issue of this "story of ideas", which takes place in the time of the Au...


  39. 39. Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift

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    From the preeminent prose satirist in the English language, a great classic recounting the four remarkable journeys of ship's surgeon Lemuel Gulliver. For children it remains an enchanting fantasy;...


  40. 40. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

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    Having done the longest day in literature with his monumental Ulysses (1922), James Joyce set himself an even greater challenge for his next book — the night. "A nocturnal state.... That is what I ...


  41. 41. The Lusiad by Luís Vaz Camões

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    Os Lusíadas (Portuguese pronunciation: [uʒ luˈzi.ɐðɐʃ]), usually translated as The Lusiads, is a Portuguese epic poem by Luís Vaz de Camões (sometimes anglicized as Camoens). Written in Homeric fas...

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  42. 42. The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

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    The Three Musketeers is a novel by Alexandre Dumas, père. It recounts the adventures of a young man named d'Artagnan after he leaves home to become a guard of the musketeers. D'Artagnan is not one ...


  43. 43. The Portrait of a Lady by Henry James

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    The story centres on Isabel Archer, an attractive American whom circumstances have brought to Europe. Isabel refuses the offer of marriage to an English peer and to a bulldog-like New Englander, to...


  44. 44. Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio

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    In the early summer of the year 1348, as a terrible plague ravages the city, ten charming young Florentines take refuge in country villas to tell each other stories — a hundred stories of love, adv...


  45. 45. Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett

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    Waiting for Godot (pronounced /ˈɡɒdoʊ/) is a play by Samuel Beckett, in which two characters, Vladimir and Estragon, wait for someone named Godot. Godot's absence, as well as numerous other aspects...


  46. 46. Nineteen Eighty Four by George Orwell

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    The story follows the life of one seemingly insignificant man, Winston Smith, a civil servant assigned the task of perpetuating the regime's propaganda by falsifying records and political literatur...


  47. 47. Galileo by Bertolt Brecht

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    Dramatizes Galileo's conflict with the church over his assertion that the Earth revolves around the sun.

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  48. 48. Maldoror (Les Chants de Maldoror) by Comte de Lautréamont

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    This macabre but beautiful work, Les Chants de Maldoror, has achieved a considerable reputation as one of the earliest and most extraordinary examples of Surrealist writing.

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  49. 49. Collected Poems by Stéphane Mallarmé

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    Stéphane Mallarmé (French: [stefan malaʁme]; 18 March 1842 – 9 September 1898), whose real name was Étienne Mallarmé, was a French poet and critic. He was a major French symbolist poet, and his wor...

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  50. 50. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov

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    The book is internationally famous for its innovative style and infamous for its controversial subject: the protagonist and unreliable narrator, middle aged Humbert Humbert, becomes obsessed and se...


  51. 51. Tartuffe by Molière

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    Tartuffe (full title: Tartuffe, or the Impostor, French: Tartuffe, ou l'Imposteur) is a comedy by Molière. It is his most famous play.


  52. 52. Three Sisters by Anton Chekhov

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    Three Sisters (Russian: Три сeстры, translit. Tri sestry) is a play by the Russian author and playwright Anton Chekhov, perhaps partially inspired by the situation of the three Brontë sisters.[1] I...


  53. 53. One Thousand and One Nights by India/Iran/Iraq/Egypt

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    One Thousand and One Nights is a collection of Middle Eastern and South Asian stories and folk tales compiled in Arabic during the Islamic Golden Age. It is often known in English as the Arabian Ni...


  54. 54. The Trickster of Seville and His Guest of Stone by Tirso de Molina

    Image of The Trickster of Seville and His Guest of Stone

    The Trickster of Seville and the Stone Guest (Spanish: El burlador de Sevilla y convidado de piedra) is a play by Tirso de Molina. Its title varies according to the English translation, and it has ...

    - Google

  55. 55. Mensagem by Fernando Pessoa

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    Mensagem in Portuguese is a very unusual twentieth century book: it is a symbolist epic made up of 44 short poems organized in three parts or Cycles. - Wikipedia

    - Google

  56. 56. Paradise Lost by John Milton

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    Paradise Lost is an epic poem in blank verse by the 17th-century English poet John Milton. It was originally published in 1667 in ten books. A second edition followed in 1674, redivided into twelve...


  57. 57. Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe

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    A shipwreck’s sole escapee, Robinson Crusoe endures 28 years of solitude on a Caribbean island and manages not only to survive but also to prevail. A warm humanity, evocative details of his struggl...


  58. 58. The Counterfeiters by André Gide

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    The Counterfeiters is a 1925 novel by French author André Gide, first published in Nouvelle Revue Française. With many characters and crisscrossing plotlines, its main theme is that of the original...


  59. 59. The Posthumous Memoirs of Bras Cubas by Machado de Assis

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    "In his posthumous memoirs, Braz Cubas, a wealthy nineteenth-century Brazilian, examines (from beyond the grave) his rather undistinguished life in 160 short chapters that both cover the basics of ...

    - Google

  60. 60. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

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    Celebrated novel traces the moral degeneration of a handsome young Londoner from an innocent fop into a cruel and reckless pursuer of pleasure and, ultimately, a murderer. As Dorian Gray sinks into...


  61. 61. Six Characters in Search of an Author by Luigi Pirandello

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    Six Characters in Search of an Author (Sei personaggi in cerca d'autore) is the most famous and celebrated play by the Italian writer Luigi Pirandello. The play is a satirical tragicomedy. It was ...


  62. 62. Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

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    In 1862 Charles Lutwidge Dodgson, a shy Oxford mathematician with a stammer, created a story about a little girl tumbling down a rabbit hole. Thus began the immortal adventures of Alice, perhaps th...


  63. 63. Nausea by Jean-Paul Sartre

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    Sartre's greatest novel — and existentialism's key text — now introduced by James Wood. Nausea is the story of Antoine Roquentin, a French writer who is horrified at his own existence. In impressio...

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  64. 64. Confessions of Zeno by Italo Svevo

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    Zeno's Conscience is a novel by Italian businessman and author Italo Svevo. The main character is Zeno Cosini and the book is the fictional character's memoirs that he keeps at the insistence of hi...


  65. 65. Long Day's Journey Into Night by Eugene O'Neill

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    Long Day's Journey into Night is a drama in four acts written by American playwright Eugene O'Neill in 1941–42 but only published in 1956. The play is widely considered to be his masterwork. O'Neil...


  66. 66. Man's Fate by Andre Malraux

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  67. 67. The Poetry of Ezra Pound by Ezra Pound

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    Ezra Weston Loomis Pound (30 October 1885 – 1 November 1972) was an expatriate American poet and critic who was a major figure of the early modernist movement. His contribution to poetry began with...


  68. 68. Songs of Innocence and Experience by William Blake

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    Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Shewing the Two Contrary States of the Human Soul are two books of poetry by the English poet and painter, William Blake. Although Songs of Innocence was first...


  69. 69. A Streetcar Named Desire by Tennessee Williams

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    The Pulitzer Prize and Drama Critics Circle Award winning play—reissued with an introduction by Arthur Miller (Death of a Salesman and The Crucible), and Williams' essay "The World I Live In." It i...

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  70. 70. Collected Fiction by Jorge Luis Borges

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    From his 1935 debut with The Universal History of Iniquity, through his immensely influential collections Ficciones and The Aleph, these enigmatic, elaborate, imaginative inventions display Borges'...


  71. 71. Rhinoceros and Other Plays by Eugène Ionesco

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    Presents three dramatic works by the contemporary French experimental playwright: The Leader, The Future Is in Eggs or It Takes all Sorts to Make a World, and Rhinoceros.

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  72. 72. Death of Virgil by Hermann Broch

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    It is the reign of the Emperor Augustus, and Publius Vergilius Maro, the poet of the Aeneid and Caesar's enchanter, has been summoned to the palace, where he will shortly die. Out of the last hours...

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  73. 73. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman

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    Leaves of Grass (1855) is a poetry collection by the American poet Walt Whitman. Among the poems in the collection are "Song of Myself," "I Sing the Body Electric," "Out of the Cradle Endlessly Roc...


  74. 74. The Tartar Steppe by Dino Buzzati

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    Often Likened to Kafka's The Castle, this great Italian novel, first published in 1945, is both a scathing criticism of military life and a meditation on the human thirst for glory. It tells of you...


  75. 75. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

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    One of the 20th century's enduring works, One Hundred Years of Solitude is a widely beloved and acclaimed novel known throughout the world, and the ultimate achievement in a Nobel Prize–winning car...


  76. 76. Journey to the End of The Night by Louis-Ferdinand Céline

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    Journey to the End of Night is the first novel of Louis-Ferdinand Céline. This semi-autobiographical work describes antihero Ferdinand Bardamu. His surname, Bardamu, is derived from the French word...


  77. 77. The Illustrious House of Ramires by Eça de Queirós

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    "Eça de Queiros (1845-1900) ought to be," as the London Observer stated, "up there with Balzac, Dickens, and Tolstoy as one of the talismanic names of the nineteenth century." His superlative penul...

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  78. 78. Hopscotch by Julio Cortázar

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    When La Maga, his mistress, disappears, Horacio Oliveira, an Argentinian writer living in Paris, decides to return home to Buenos Aires.

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  79. 79. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck

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    Set during the Great Depression, the novel focuses on a poor family of sharecroppers, the Joads, driven from their home by drought, economic hardship, and changes in the agriculture industry. In a ...


  80. 80. Memoirs of Hadrian by Marguerite Yourcenar

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    Memoirs of Hadrian is a novel by the French writer Marguerite Yourcenar about the life and death of Roman Emperor Hadrian. The book was first published in France in French in 1951 as Mémoires d'Had...


  81. 81. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger

    Image of The Catcher in the Rye

    The Catcher in the Rye is a 1945 novel by J. D. Salinger. Originally published for adults, the novel has become a common part of high school and college curricula throughout the English-speaking wo...


  82. 82. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

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    Revered by all of the town's children and dreaded by all of its mothers, Huckleberry Finn is indisputably the most appealing child-hero in American literature. Unlike the tall-tale, idyllic worl...


  83. 83. Fairy Tales and Stories by Hans Christian Anderson

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    a Danish author and poet noted for his children's stories. These include "The Steadfast Tin Soldier", "The Snow Queen", "The Little Mermaid", "Thumbelina", "The Little Match Girl", and the "The Ugl...


  84. 84. The Leopard by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

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    The Leopard is a novel by Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa that chronicles the changes in Sicilian life and society during the Risorgimento. Published posthumously in 1958, after two rejections by the ...


  85. 85. Tristram Shandy by Laurence Sterne

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    As its title suggests, the book is ostensibly Tristram's narration of his life story. But it is one of the central jokes of the novel that he cannot explain anything simply, that he must make expla...


  86. 86. A Passage to India by E.M. Forster

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    A Passage to India is set against the backdrop of the British Raj and the Indian independence movement in the 1920s. The story revolves around four characters: Dr. Aziz, his British friend Cyril Fi...


  87. 87. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

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    The book is narrated in free indirect speech following the main character Elizabeth Bennet as she deals with matters of upbringing, marriage, moral rightness and education in her aristocratic socie...


  88. 88. Tropic of Cancer by Henry Miller

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    Set in France (primarily Paris) during the 1930s, it is the tale of Miller's life as a struggling writer. Combining fiction and autobiography, some chapters follow a strict narrative and refer to M...


  89. 89. Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev

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    Fathers and Sons is an 1862 novel by Ivan Turgenev, his best known work. The fathers and children of the novel refers to the growing divide between the two generations of Russians, and the chara...


  90. 90. The Loser by Thomas Bernhard

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    Thomas Bernhard (1931-1989) has been hailed by Gabriel Josipovici as 'Austria's finest postwar writer' and by George Steiner as 'one of the masters of contemporary European fiction.' Faber Finds is...

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  91. 91. Epic of Gilgamesh by Unknown

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    The Epic of Gilgamesh is an epic poem from Ancient Iraq and is among the earliest known works of literary writings. Scholars believe that it originated as a series of Sumerian legends and poems abo...


  92. 92. Mahabharata by Vyasa

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    The Mahabharata is one of the two major Sanskrit epics of ancient India, the other being the Rāmāyaṇa. The epic is part of the Hindu itihāsa (literally "history"), and forms an important part of Hi...


  93. 93. Invisible Cities by Italo Calvino

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    Invisible Cities (Italian: Le città invisibili) is a novel by Italian writer Italo Calvino. It was published in Italy in 1972 by Giulio Einaudi Editore.


  94. 94. On the Road by Jack Kerouac

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    On the Road is a largely autobiographical work that was based on the spontaneous road trips of Kerouac and his friends across mid-century America. It is often considered a defining work of the post...


  95. 95. Steppenwolf by Hermann Hesse

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    Steppenwolf (orig. German Der Steppenwolf) is the tenth novel by German-Swiss author Hermann Hesse. Originally published in Germany in 1927, it was first translated into English in 1929. Combining ...


  96. 96. Portnoy's Complaint by Philip Roth

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    Of course it's vulgar. How could it not be? The sustained cry of a ferociously perplexed, ferociously lucid New York City Jew—you expected maybe Jane Austen? Roth's barbaric yawp of a book was a li...

    - Time

  97. 97. Atonement by Ian McEwan

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    Atonement is a 2001 novel by British author Ian McEwan. It tells the story of protagonist Briony Tallis's crime and how it changes her life, as well as those of her sister Cecilia and her lover Rob...


  98. 98. Disgrace by J. M. Coetzee

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    Disgrace is a 1999 novel by South African-born author J. M. Coetzee, winner of the 2003 Nobel Prize in Literature; the book itself won the Booker Prize in 1999, the year in which it was published. ...


  99. 99. The Makioka Sisters by Tanizaki Jun’ichirō

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    Tanizaki's masterpiece is the story of four sisters, and the declining fortunes of a traditional Japanese family. It is a loving and nostalgic recreation of the sumptuous, intricate upper-class lif...

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  100. 100. Pedro Paramo by Juan Rulfo

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    Pedro Páramo is a short novel written by Juan Rulfo, originally published in 1955. In just the 23 FCE editions and reprintings, it had sold by November 1997 1,143,000 copies. Other editions in Mexi...