Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Recap of Novels 71-80

Average rating of novels 71-80 - 3.6 out of 5 Stars

71. ★★               The Ambassadors     by Henry James
72. ★★★★       An American Tragedy     by Theodore Dreiser
73. ★★★★½    Atlas Shrugged     by Ayn Rand
74. ★★★★       Great Expectations     by Charles Dickens
75. ★★★½        The Fountainhead     by Ayn Rand
76. ★★½            The Wings of the Dove     by Henry James
★★★★½    Les Misérables     by Victor Hugo
★★★★       Crime and Punishment  by Fyodor Dostoevsky
79. ★★★½        The Heart of the Matter     by Graham Greene
80. ★★★½        Appointment in Samarra     by John O’Hara

Favorite: Les Misérables
Honorable Mention: Atlas Shrugged

Least Favorite: The Ambassadors

Best Hero/Heroine: Jean Valjean from Les Misérables
Dagny Taggart from Atlas Shrugged

Most Villainous: Monsieur and Madame Thénardier from Les Misérables

Most interesting/Complex character: Francisco d’Anconia from Atlas Shrugged

Best Quotation: Man’s mind is his basic tool of survival. Life is given to him, survival is not. His body is given to him, its sustenance is not. His mind is given to him, its content is not. ~ John Galt in Atlas Shrugged

Runner up, not so profound, but goodness could a man make use of such a line: When Milly smiled it was a public event – when she didn’t it was a chapter of history. ~ narrative from The Wings of the Dove

Best Subtitle: No subtitles in this group

Best film adaptation: 2012 musical version of Les Misérables, because it is true to the book (other than the whole musical part).

Worst film adaptation: The three-part film adaptation of Atlas Shrugged – The producers started with a good idea of filming this in three parts, and then made the baffling decision to recast each successive film – and I don’t mean they recast main characters – I mean they recast EVERY character – no exaggeration – every character.


  1. I love the Liam Neesom Les Mis. :)

    1. I thought Neeson and Rush were perfectly cast as Valjean and Javert, but I wasn't crazy about the happy ever after ending. For that, I preferred the musical as being more faithful.

  2. I had to look at your list to see which books you rated one and a half stars. On The Road! Why am I not surprised? And Ulysses which I'm thinking of giving another try. Your rating, however, doesn't inspire me. I'm going to give it more thought.

    1. I hate to say this...but I may owe James Joyce another read of Ulysses. I read that very early in my quest, and I believe I would rate it higher today. It still wouldn't be high...just probably higher. I'm glad I read it at any rate.


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