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Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress
Steven Pinker
Progress: 54/576 pages
The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction
Neil Gaiman
Progress: 202/502 pages

The best novels in English: readers' alternative list

Beloved - Toni Morrison The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry Infinite Jest - David Foster Wallace Slaughterhouse-Five - Kurt Vonnegut The Fellowship of the Ring - J.R.R. Tolkien I, Lucifer - Glen Duncan Harry Potter Boxset (Harry Potter, #1-7) - J.K. Rowling Stranger in a Strange Land - Robert A. Heinlein

What a good title. An alternative list. That's my kind of list. 


I've read some of the books on the list, so I would list them out. 


3. Beloved by Toni Morrison  


Read it long ago. And it is a literature kind of book. Good read but painful. As the characters in the story were going through so much internal emotional pain. So not an easy read. 


4. The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood 

At first, I dislike it so much. How do the future world fall into the hands of religious fanatics so much that women were used for sex and breeding. But then, I found out that it is a warning for people to not let religious fanatics run the world according to religious rule. Look at ISIS and you know that this kind of came to reality. Good people tolerate religious craziness without challenging them out of politeness. But then when this religious ideas went unchallenged for so long to reach the point of harm, it is too late. 


6. A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry 


A haunting book about poor in India. The cultural contexts imagined is so strange, and so based on mystery that you could not look away. 


7. Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace 


Great book that make you think and rethink about human, individual. It is like watching a man go naked and revealing himself, with all his vulnerability. In the end, you kind of comprehend, and get to know the character. Good book. Highly recommended. 


8.Slaughterhouse Five by Kurt Vonnegut


Another good book. Short and thoughtful. If you like the TV series M.A.S.H., you would probably love this one. 


9.  The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien 


One great book about a world where good and defeat evil. Where nature being destroyed by industry could fight back. It is a good story and the language of the book is great. Unforgettable characters, complex story, good read.


10. I, Lucifer by Glen Duncan 


So happy this make the list. I have this book and I like it. It is a story about the devil. The devil is not the cardboard character that many books describe, but the devil has a mind and his psychology and philosophy. 


11. Harry Potter series by JK Rowling


I love Harry Potter. Good story about a boy who lost his parents could grow up to become a a good person, a  sorcerer, a great friend. 


Book about magic, adventure and friendship. What's not to love?


12. Stranger in a Strange Land by Robert A Heinlein


This is on my to-read pile. I got it already somewhere but now it make it to the list. I think I would move this one up.