The BBC has conducted a survey of the books most people lie about having read. The top two are George Orwell's 1984 and Tolstoy's War and Peace.
It never occurred to me that people would lie about having read a book. It seems risky if the person you're talking to says what did you think about what Bolkonsky did on page 738? Then you're screwed.
I can sort of understand why people lie about War and Peace. Its one of those quantity over quality things. You read that huge book, wow your smart...lets have sex...
I tried to read War and Peace several times but I found it quite tedious and not a very engaging story. Sorry if you're Tolstoy fan. I generally dislike long novels, the exception being Lord of the Rings which I couldn't put down.
Orwell's 1984 puzzles me a bit more. You can read it in one sitting and its totally captivating. In Alberta most people had to read it in high school as I did. I re-read it a couple of years ago and found it far more interesting. Bush and Harper made it seem more prescient.
Other books on the list include James Joyce's Ulysses and Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary. I tried to read Ulysses but got lost in the plot. Call me a plump stately Buck Mulligan. All that shaving... My excuse for not reading Madame Bovary was my promise to myself that someday I would read it in the original French. Also I read Woody Allen's short story the Kugelmass Episode which kind of ruined it for me.
Try not to lie about the books you've not read. That kind of thing makes me crazy.
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