2014 in Review

Welcome to 2015 !

Apologies for going quiet towards the end of last year, we were all rather busy in our day-to-day lives and that left rather little time for reviewing and posting here.

To start us off, here is a recap of all the books we did review throughout 2014 and a little bit of humour as we revisit the topic of which is the favourite 100.  Our first post about that was back in July 2012, to which we added a follow-up in January 2013.  As at the start of 2015, here are our most popular 100s.

Books 1 – 99: 31 reviews
Books 100 – 199: 17 reviews
Books 200 – 299: 27 reviews
Books 300 – 399: 17 reviews
Books 400 – 499: 17 reviews
Books 500 – 599: 20 reviews
Books 600 – 699: 17 reviews
Books 700 – 799: 20 reviews
Books 800 – 899: 19 reviews
Books 900 – 1001: 18 reviews

Surprisingly it’s a pretty even balance across most of the list, with only 1-99 and 200-299 showing out as clear favourites.

If you prefer it by century then here we are:

2000s: 23 reviews
1900s: 137 reviews
1800s: 33 reviews
1700s: 4 reviews
pre-1700: 6 reviews

This balance is unsurprising given the heavy weighting towards books from the 1900s in the list.

Does your reading of the 1001 Books show any bias, in either 100s or centuries?

A total of 24 books were reviewed in 2014, and here they are.




The Man Who Loved Children          The Master and Margarita            The Thin Man








B      T       l       r







200 Books Reviewed

We’ve reached another milestone – 200 books reviewed!

Books reviewed widget

Our 200th review was for Cannery Row, by John Steinbeck. Quite fitting that this review was written by our very own Ms Oh Waily, who is doing a brilliant job at working her way through the books on the 1001 Books list.

The review for Cannery Row is the second review of the three Steinbeck novels on this list. Of Mice and Men was highly thought of, and Grapes of Wrath will also no doubt also be positively reviewed.

Over the past few months, we’ve seen a handful of authors recurring in our reviews.

Charles Dickens has been well-represented, with reviews for Oliver Twist, A Christmas Carol and Great Expectations joining the previously-reviewed A Tale of Two Cities and The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby.

The four Dashiell Hammett novels were also reviewed in quick successions recently; you can read Ms Oh Waily’s thoughts on The Thin Man, Red Harvest, The Glass Key and The Maltese Falcon.

A review for After the Quake completes the entries of Haruki Murakami novels on the list. It joins Sputnik Sweetheart, Kafka on the Shore and The Wind-Up Bird Chronicles; obviously these novels are a popular choice for our reviewers.

There are, however, still 800 books to be reviewed. If you have previously read any of the un-reviewed books on the list, or have been meaning to read any of them, we would love to publish your review. You can join the review crew here. We’re also more than happy (due to being extremely grateful!) if your review has been previously published on your own blog.

Thank you for reading, and for reviewing, and for your support as we slowly make our way through this labour of love.

xx Lynn and Ange xx

**Competition Reminder**

You might recall that at the end of July, we reached the magic milestone of having reviewed 150 books from the list – hurrah!

You might also recall that we like to celebrate these milestones with a little giveaway – hurrah hurrah!

You might also recall that you’ve been meaning to submit a review for publication by 30th September to be in to win a paperback copy of your choice from the 1001 Books list – hurrah hurrah hurrah!

There’s still plenty of time to submit your review(s), and we look forward to receiving them. Full T&C can be found here.

x Lynn, Tori & Angela x


January and February Updates

5 books reviewed in January
5 books reviewed in February
124 books reviewed in total

877 books to go

First of all, we’d just like to thank our lovely reviewers for helping get 2013 off to a great start with reviews. It’s to be expected that things would be a bit slow after the Christmas and New Year holidays, but the dedication of our reviewers has been fantastic. Our goal is to publish two reviews each week, and we’ve almost achieved this; it wouldn’t be possible without the team of reviewers, so THANK YOU!!

The first review of the year came from Ms Oh Waily, who reviewed The Wonderful O; one of the children’s books featuring on the list. This was followed by a real mixture of modern and classic reviews: Love Medicine, Sons and Lovers, The Mayor of Casterbridge, with Jane Eyre rounding out the month nicely.

February was heavy on books from the 1900s (The Catcher in the Rye, A Severed Head, Timbuktu, The Plague and Perfume), with Kafka on the Shore (2000s) thrown in for good measure. Plus Kara’s review of War and Peace should be enough to convince those of you who have put off reading this due to its sheer size – it really is worth the effort!

I don’t know about the rest of you, but personally, my list of ‘Must Read’ books is growing with every review!

The 100s Reading Theme

Just for my own amusement I thought I would take a look at the distribution of our reviews so far.  Yes, it is geeky of me, but then I wouldn’t be here editing a list of book reviews if I wasn’t something akin to one.

Are you interested to know just where our Reviewers have been concentrating their talents?

To make it simpler I have broken our large list down into one hundreds, with the exception of the first and last “hundreds”.

Books 1 – 99: 14 reviews
Books 100 – 199: 7 reviews
Books 200 – 299: 9 reviews
Books 300 – 399: 7 reviews
Books 400 – 499: 6 reviews
Books 500 – 599: 2 reviews
Books 600 – 699: 2 reviews
Books 700 – 799: 10 reviews
Books 800 – 899: 9 reviews
Books 900 – 1001: 2 reviews

What I would like to know is, what’s wrong with the books between 500 and 669, and the last 101?
I am actually glad to see that we have reviews in each “hundred” at very least, but clearly we need to be encouraging more participation in those middle sections.

Any of our kind reviewers stuck for the next choice to read?  How about you look for your next 1001 Book in the early to mid nineteenth century?  There are some cracking authors in here – Dashiell Hammett, Dorothy Sayers, Hemingway, Mitford, Waugh, Steinbeck to name just a small handful.

And for those of you who maintain your own list, are you stuck in a particular “hundred”?  Perhaps you could challenge yourself to move out of you “hundred zone” and in to a whole new world of reading.  If you do take up my “Hundred Zone Challenge”, why not leave us a comment letting us know which hundred you love and which one you plan to try afresh.

Happy reading everyone.