I have been blogging in this space for a good five years now. Yet aside from the MAD tribute post and the porn movies post I have desisted from making 'list' posts - you know posts in which I list things I love, hate, lust after, masturbate to, decapitate, skin, embalm, burn, emasculate, etc. There is a good reason for that, and it goes beyond my caring for the general public by not shoving in their face something subliminally gut-wrenching and nauseating.

As I have an opinion on anything and everything, my list posts would probably rival Robert Ludlum or Irving Wallace books in their length. I would have slipped in one of my favourite authors in the previous sentence if it was not for the fact that his work often gets mislabelled. He has the capacity to make you cry vociferously on one page and then give you a raging hard-on in the next. Of course, the latter is much better remembered especially if you are a man who wears boxers. Women should feel free to remark in the comments section if his books have, well... wet them down there. I don't need to name the author. Only one author had the ability to do that.

Let's see if I can make a list now. 9 items or less. Since we have touched upon authors, books is a good place to start. Well, not exactly but I am really not willing to think up something else to list. So here goes a list of 9 books. They may not necessarily be top 9 good or top 9 bad. They are just the 9 off the top of my head, in no particular order.
  • Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead - A gem of a book, not because it is fantastic in the accepted sense of the word. It is fantastic in the sense that the book proved for itself what it set out to preach - that humanity accords an exalted status to the mediocre. I have not come across a more mediocre book. Its only saving grace is the physical scene between the lead characters that treads a very fine line between rape and animalistic sex.
  • Robert Ludlum's The Bourne Identity - If ever a case had to be made against cinematic adaptations then this would convince even the most liberal of juries. The book has a lot to thank the movie for though. Just because the movie was this bad the book has instantly turned into a classic.
  • Mikhail Sholokov's Quiet Flows the Don - Quite possibly Sholokov was the last of the great Russian authors. This book won him the Nobel for literature, illustrating to all of us that sometimes the Nobel judges get things right after all. An account of Czarist Russia on either side of the great war from the view point of Gregory Milekhov, a simple farmer turned warrior, this book has that rare ability to leave that lump in your throat right through all of its two thousand or so pages.
  • Leon Uris' The Exodus - I admit. I am a sucker for all stories involving Israel's struggle for nationhood. Most of them I have read in the form of 'fact'ions. There is something romantically gory about them. It is like sleeping under heavy blankets with the air-con on full blast - you enjoy it while it lasts but don't quite look forward to a power outage.
  • Irving Wallace's The Almighty - Before bond made it famous in 'Tomorrow Never Dies', Irving Wallace wrote this book about a news corporation that makes its own news. Eventually they ended up biting more than they could chew when they tried to blast Air Force One mid-air.
  • Harold Robbins' The Carpetbaggers - This book is in a league of its own - it wove fact so brilliantly with fiction that the reader is hard-pressed to find out which is which. That and the author's flair for characterisation (you could tell what Jonas Cord would have for breakfast or what Rina Marlow would carry in her handbag) make it one of the most spellbinding books I have ever read. Every character is still etched in my memory.
  • Dan Brown's Angels and Demons - The prequel to 'The Da Vinci Code', this book has more blood and gore. The finesse with which Brown interweaves urban legend with history can only be appreciated. However, like all Dan Brown books the ending leaves you feeling cheated - it promised to deliver so much more but got weighed down by its own expectations.
  • Sidney Sheldon's Rage of Angels - Sidney Sheldon just had to make the list, didn't he? He is to books what Britney Spears is to music - extremely popular but lacking all class. Rage of Angels is from those times when he wrote freely, without the pressure of matching the sales of his previous bestsellers. And it had a woman lead in Jennifer Parker which pleased all the feminists greatly.
  • Arundhati Roy's The God of Small Things - Just how brilliant this book is can be gauged by Roy's permanent writer's block. She has not written since, probably giving away all she had in that one book. No wonder she won The Booker. She had to for this one.
That's about it. Perhaps I shall list out the top 9 racks or the top 9 rumps in my next post. But going by the history of this blog, I would probably do something else.

Current Mood: Gloomy
Current Music: Gloria Gaynor - I will Surivive