Recently, someone made a comment about me being “well read.” I hate that phrase. A lot. Almost as much as I hate Anna Karenina. Here’s the problem with it: it’s completely subjective.
I can say I have read many books, hundreds of thousands of books. I have four bookcases at home with the books overflowing from the shelves and I have read all but two of them. Those two currently sit in my “To-Be-Read” pile. I ebook library is fairly good sized. I’m a Kindle Unlimited member as well as an Oyster subscriber.
I know my way around the classics and have disliked my fair share, most notably the above mentioned, but I can add War & Peace to that list… To be honest, I hate Tolstoy, even his short stories irritate and annoy me. I’m much better with some of his counterparts, I like Dostoevsky and Zamyatin’s We is prehaps one of my favorite stories of all time. However, it isn’t just Russian classics that I like – Jeckyll & Hyde, Pride & Prejudice, The Phantom of the Opera, Tess of the D’Ubervilles, and so many others I’m not going to list here.
I also read modern stuff, I’m not a literary snob. HP Lovecraft is my favorite author, but I love Clive Barker as well. And Janet Evanovich, Stephen King, Dean Koontz (sometimes), Jack Kilborn (JA Konrath), and Gail Carriager. Then there are some I prefer to watch; I don’t like Tess Gerritsen or Kathy Reichs, but I enjoy Bones and Rizzoli & Isles. Same for Michael Crighton, I’m much better off watching one of his books than reading one.
So, I don’t know if I’m well read or not. It depends on the standards. By some I am. By Stephen King’s, I’m not (in his books about writing, he has recommendations that every writer should read… I have not read but 35% of those recommendations).