The Bigger Read list

Works of Prose/Epic Poetry not written in English (in alphabetical order)


Aesop, The Complete Fables

Alain-Fournier, Le Grand Meaulnes

Allende, Isabel, The House of the Spirits

Anderson, Hans Christian, Fairy Tales

De Assis, Machado Joaquim Maria, Dom Casmurro

Saint Augustine, The Confessions

de Balzac, Honore, La Cousine Bette

de Beauvoir, Simone, The Second Sex

The Bible

Borges, Jorge-Luis, Labyrinths

Bulgakov, Mikhail, The Master and Margarita

Calvino, Italo, If On a Winter’s Night a Traveller

Camus, Albert, The Outsider

Camus, Albert, The Plague

Celine, Louis-Ferdinand, Journey to the End of the Night

De Cervantes, Miguel, Don Quixote

Chekhov, Anton, The Lady with the Dog and other stories

Christensen, Lars Saabye, The Half-Brother

Cocteau, Jean, Les Enfants Terribles

Coehlo, Paulo, The Alchemist

Dante, The Inferno

Dostoyevski, Fyodor, Crime and Punishment

Dostoyevski, Fyodor, The Idiot

Dumas, Alexandre, The Count of Monte Cristo

Dumas, Alexandre, The Three Musketeers

Duras, Marguerite, The Lover

Eça de Queirós, José Maria, The Maias

Eco, Umberto, The Name of the Rose

Enquist, Per Olov, The Visit of the Royal Physician

Flaubert, Gustave, Bouvard and Pecuchet

Flaubert, Gustave, Madame Bovary

Freud, Sigmund, The Interpretation of Dreams

Frank, Anne, Diary of a Young Girl

Fuentes, Carlos, The Years with Laura Diaz

Gaarder, Jostein, Sophie’s World

Garcίa Márquez, Gabriel, Love in the Time of Cholera

Garcίa Márquez, Gabriel, One Hundred Years of Solitude

Grass, Günter, The Tin Drum

von Goethe, Johann Wolfgang, Faust

Gogol, Nikolai, Dead Souls

Goytisolo, Juan, Count Julian

Grimm, Jacob and Grimm, Wilhelm, Fairy Tales

Grossman, Vasily, Life and Fate

Hamsun, Knut, The Growth of the Soul

Hamsun, Knut, Hunger

Harrer, Heinrich, Seven Years in Tibet

Heyerdahl, Thor, The Kon Tiki Expedition

Høeg, Peter, Miss Smilla’s Feeling for Snow

Homer, The Iliad

Homer, The Odyssey

Hugo, Victor, Les Misérables

Kadare, Ismael, The Three-Arched Bridge

Kafka, Franz, The Trial

Kazantzakis, Nikos, Zorba the Great

Kemal, Yasar, Mehmed My Hawk

Kertesz, Imre, Fateless

Khayyam, Omar, The Rubaiyat

Kis, Danilo, A Tomb for Boris Davidovich

Klemperer, Victor, I Shall Bear Witness

The Koran

Kosztolányi, Dezsö, Anna Edes

Kundera, Milan, Identity

Kundera, Milan, The Unbearable Lightness of Being

de Laclos, Pierre Choderlos, Dangerous Liaisons

di Lampedusa, Giuseppe Tomasi, The Leopard

Lao Tzu, Book of the Way (Tao Te Ching)

Laxness, Halldor, Independent People

Leopardi, Giacomo, The Canti

de Lorris, Guillame and de Meun, Jean, Le Roman de la Rose

Lu Xu, The Story of Ah Q

The Mahabarata

Mann, Thomas, Buddenbrooks

Mann, Thomas, Death in Venice

Mann, Thomas, Magic Mountain

Mao Tsetung, Little Red Book

Marai, Sandor, Embers

Marukami, Haruki, Norwegian Wood

Marukami, Haruki, The Wind Up Bird Chronicle

Marx, Karl, The Communist Manifesto

Mishima, Yukio, Forbidden Colours

Musil, Robert, Young Torless

Nabokov, Vladimir, The Gift

Nietzsche, Friedrich, Twilight of the Idols

Öe, Kenzaburo, Somersault

Pamuk, Orhan, The Black Book

Pamuk, Orhan, My Name is Red

Pascal, Blais, Pensées

Pasternak, Boris, Doctor Zhivago

Perec, George, Life A User’s Guide

Platonov, Andrey, Happy Moscow 

Platonov, Andrey, Soul

Platonov, Andrey, The Return

Pleijel, Agneta, The Dog Star

Proust, Marcel, In Search of Lost Time

Queneau, Raymond, Zazie in the Metro

Robbe-Grillet, Alain, Jealousy

Roth, Joseph, The Radetsky March

Sagan, Françoise, Bonjour Tristesse

de Saint-Exupéry, Antoine, The Little Prince

Saramago, Jose, The Stone Raft

Sartre, Jean-Paul, Words

Schopenhauer, Arthur, Essays and Aphorisms

Sebald, W.G., Austerlitz

Sebald, W.G., Emigrants

Sebald, W.G., The Rings of Saturn

Schlink, Bernard, The Reader

Schoeman, Karel, Another Country

Solzhenitsyn, Aleksandr, One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

Stendhal, Henri, The Charterhouse of Parma

Stendhal, Henri, Scarlet and Black

Süskind, Patrick, Perfume

Szerb, Antal, Journey by Moonlight

Tanizaki, Junichiro, The Makioka Sisters

Tolstoy, Leo, Anna Karenina

Tolstoy, Leo, War and Peace

Torrente Ballester, Gonzalo, The Saga Fuga de J B

Turgenev, Ivan, First Love

Xingjian, Gao, Soul Mountain

Vargos Llosa, Mario, The War at the End of the World

Virgil, The Aeneid

Wilhelm, Richard and Baynes, Cary F., trans. (original author unknown), Book of Changes (The I Ching)

This list has been compiled by the staff of English PEN, with suggestions from members.  Do contact us  if you would like to see your suggestions included here. 

Fred Armentrout is the President of Hong-Kong (English-Speaking) PEN.  He has sent us some suggestions to add to The Bigger Read list; click on his name to read the list.

We are also compiling a Top 50 list of translations (i.e. titles will be included based on the quality of the actual translation).  Again, your thoughts on this would be most welcome.  Watch this space for more details…

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