And this week’s question from Bostonbibliophile: What’s the most popular book in your library? Have you read it? What did you think? How many users have it?
Mine is Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, with 37,389 owners on LT — though my copy is British and thus The Philosopher’s Stone. I’ve read it, and thought it was enjoyable but there are better children’s fantasy books out there.
Let’s go on to the first one that isn’t a Potterverse book. That’s The Hobbit, or, There and Back Again (24,939 LT users), one of the aforementioned better children’s fantasy books. This one I’ve read, but not as often as one might expect, in part because I had somehow never heard of it until I got to university. I haven’t read it for some years, as my copy is in storage, and So Many Books So Little Time.
Running through a few more of the list of most owned books on LT, I have Pride and Prejudice (23,275), 1984 (23,067), The Lord of the Rings (17,972), Jane Eyre (16,841), Animal Farm (15,369), Brave New World (15,027). I’ve read them all, with varying degrees of enjoyment. Sometimes varying with the same book — I know I enjoyed Brave New World when I first read a library copy in my early teens, but I bought my own copy from the Folio Society when I was still a regular member, which means probably my late twenties, and found it hard to get into then. I also have LoTR and Animal Farm in Folio Society editions — in fact, Animal Farm was one of the first FS books I bought. It was one of my set books in English at high school, and I adored it, thanks to a wonderful teacher who brought the allegory to life for us.
1984 for me will always be something I see in the light of the 1954 BBC dramatization, which was repeated when I was a child, and thus I saw it before I ever read the book. It had such an impact that more than 30 years later I can still remember how I felt watching some of those scenes. I can’t disentangle the book from that.
So, what’s your book that’s most popular with LT members?