It’s no secret that my TBR pile is
slightly insane. I could easily compile four or five ceiling-high stacks of books I haven’t read, but still own. And that’s a modest estimate (please don’t ask me to count them, there are too many and I might cry). And the more I stare at the piles of books, the more my eyes are drawn to the giant, intimidating tomes. What can I say? I like big books. But I’m also far less inclined to pick them up on a regular basis. So they build up. Like bricks. Haunting me with their hefty spines. Ok, I’m done.
But I decided to share some of the biggest books in my TBR pile in the hopes that I will find some motivation to actually read them (even if it takes me months), because I know there are some hidden gems, if only I could get to them. So, without further ado, I give you the BIGGEST BOOKS in my TBR pile:
Les Misérables by Victor Hugo – 1,456. Every time I look at this book, I have to remind myself that I finished War and Peace, and I can finish this one. But its just insanely long and a classic and I have not found the energy for it yet.
Under the Dome by Stephen King – 1,074 pages. A few summers ago, I watched the TV series based on this book, and loved it. Naturally, I immediately went out and bought the book. And it’s spent two years collecting dust. Now that I’m looking at this list as a whole, I’d say this is the book I’m most likely to pick up off this list, because I tend to read Stephen King novels fairly quickly (I finished the 849-page 11/22/63 in just three days). But I still doubt I’m going to reach for it anytime soon.
Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell by Susanna Clarke – 1,005 pages. This book is long, and it looks it. I’m not exaggerating when I say the spine is exactly as wide as my index finger is long. This book is BIG. I’ve heard so many incredible things about it, but every time I want to pick it up, I pass because I feel like I’m going to be living inside it for a year, and I have too many other things to read at the moment. I will eventually read this book, but until then it will sit on my shelf, terrifying me with it’s girth. (Seriously, though, this book isn’t even the longest book on this list, but it’s easily the widest.)
The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett – 973 pages. Finally! A book under 1,000 pages! So many people have recommended this book to me, but I feel like if I’m going to pick up a tome of this size, I need to be in the right mood to read it. And I just haven’t particularly felt like reading 12th-Century historical fiction.
The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio – 909 pages. It’s not really something I talk about a lot, but I kind of have a thing for Medieval literature. (Why else would I have taken three college/grad school courses in it?) I’ve read excerpts from The Decameron, but never the whole story (it’s basically the Italian version of The Canterbury Tales), and it’s just one of those books I want to read at some point. But it’s still 900 pages of medieval literature, so it’s not exactly an easy read.
Full disclosure: I have way too many books to sort through, so these were just the five I came up with after searching for about half an hour (all the time I was willing to devote to this project). I also didn’t include bind-ups of the Complete Works of Shakespeare, Austen, and Poe or the Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, because I have read significant parts of each already.
The books that ended up on this list are definitely some of the longest and most intimidating books on my shelf, and a great representation of the different kinds of books I’ve been collecting over the years. And I do think writing this post was a good reminder of why I bought each of these books in the first place. Because I do want to read them.
Have you read any of the books on this list? What’s the biggest book on your TBR?