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Win a Copy of One of the First 17 Books!

As a thank you to the readers of 101 Books, I’m giving away a free, brand-new paperback copy of one of the first 17 books I’ve read during this project. It’s on me. Shipping included!

The winner picks the book–any one of the first 17 is yours for the taking. Yes, even Infinite Jest. Even Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret. It’s your choice!

The catch? There is no catch. To enter the drawing, all you have to do is answer the following question in the comments below: What is your favorite book of all time?

From your comments, I’ll randomly select one answer as the winner, which I will announce on Monday. You have until midnight Saturday (Central Time) to get your answers in. Go!

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61 Comments Post a comment
  1. Lance Armstrong’s War by Daniel Coyle

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  2. Blair #

    My favorite book I’ve read recently is The Shack. Very powerful to me!

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  3. Jeanne Miller #

    A Lesson Before Dying (by Ernest Gaines)

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    May 20, 2011
  4. Amy #

    Just one? Gone with the Wind.

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    May 20, 2011
  5. How fun! And how kind of you.

    I have so many favorites, but Barbara Kingsolver’s Poisonwood Bible is way up there.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  6. bba #

    Infinite Jest

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    May 20, 2011
  7. If I have to pick one, it would be “Martin Eden” by Jack London: http://andreasmoser.wordpress.com/2010/09/07/book-review-martin-eden-by-jack-london/

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    May 20, 2011
  8. Kim #

    A Fine Balance by Rohinton Mistry

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    May 20, 2011
  9. bethanychristine #

    Maybe this is cheating: The Lord of the Rings.
    I mean, yes, technically it is 3 books, but Tolkien wrote them originally as one whole work! So I’m using it as such. :-)

    Like

    May 20, 2011
    • It only counts as one book on the Time list as well, because that’s the way he intended. That one is going to be a beast to get through.

      Like

      May 20, 2011
  10. This is generous of you – in fact if I win, please don’t ship it to me in the UK, unleash it on to your nearest book swap circuit. Finding just one favourite book is tough – but today I’m very keen on Mr Pip by Lloyd Jones (hope I’ve got this author name right). It is a reworking of Great Expectations set in the South Pacific’s Papua New Guinea. Fab, and copes with rereading too.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
    • No worries. I’ll ship to England…maybe media mail, though. Might take a few extra days.

      Like

      May 20, 2011
  11. Gemma Sidney #

    ‘The Fountainhead’ by Ayn Rand.

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    May 20, 2011
  12. Oh, just one? Um… Wow that’s hard. There are so many authors I love, Hemmingway, the Bronte sisters, Jane Austen, Hawthorne, Orwell, etc. Right off the top of my head, I would have to say Pride and Prejudice. I love the time period Austen writes about, the way she writes, and the characters are fabulous! The plot might be a bit simple, but at the time it was rather revolutionary. A woman writing and with such a tongue in cheek style was pretty new.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  13. Roger Briggs #

    Laurence Sterne’s The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman. Broke the at the time poorly-defined qualities of what a novel was, and has pissed off a lot of grad students who should know better.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  14. David Taylor #

    “Mere Christianity” by CS Lewis;

    It’s succinct, deeply thought-provoking, and imminently practical, all at once.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  15. Chris Narbone #

    A Science Fiction classic – “I Am Legend” by Richard Matheson

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    May 20, 2011
  16. I love drawings!!!!! Anytime a I can win something free is a good time for me the broke college student.

    Okay my favorite book without questions is “Spindle’s End” by Robin McKinley. I’ve read it three times already, and will probably read it a forth by the end of the year. I just like watching fairy tales get reborn with arts and all twists and turns.

    Ame’

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  17. Cath #

    Posting to South Africa may be pushing it, but one of my favourites has to be ‘When a crocodile eats the sun” by Peter Godwin. Very moving and a huge eye-opener

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    May 20, 2011
  18. Ross #

    The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky

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    May 20, 2011
  19. Shawna #

    My favorite book of all time is The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin.
    (Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings is a very close second. I’m currently on my 6th read through the cycle, this time introducing my second son to the story by reading the whole thing aloud.)

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  20. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee is my all time favorite!!!

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    May 20, 2011
  21. Lord of the Flies by William Golding. Flies not rings. :)

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    May 20, 2011
  22. Michelle #

    I too love anything Jane Austen so Pride and Prejudice is way up there on my list. I also love Harry Potter for mindless-type reading pleasure. And I do love GWTW. And though I haven’t read Infinite Jest, I’ve enjoyed the snippets of DFW’s writing (his grammar test–notsomuch).I can’t pick a true favorite. It depends in my mood! That’s what’s great about books–there’s one (or one hundred) for every part of your personality!

    Like

    May 20, 2011
    • It makes me sad that you consider HP mindless. It’s an easy read for sure, but I would never consider it mindless.

      Like

      May 20, 2011
  23. Vicky Feldman #

    A really old book, Lonesome Pine. I forget the author. My eighty-one year old mother read it as a child with the light of the coal stove, in Clemen’s Bottom, KY. Since that one isn’t on the Times List, I will pick another. All of the 100 are wonderful in their own unique style and story, but I have to say, “Red Harvest” by Dashiell Hammett.
    Thank you!

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  24. My favorite book of all time…hmmm. That is a thought provoking questions. Goodness – I have a favorite in different genres and eras, but a favorite of all time? That’s like picking a favorite child…it all depends on the day.

    I’ll have to go with the first book that popped into my head when I read your post: “Little Women” by Louisa May Alcott. I have read this book 40+ times and still love it. Alcott created lovely, fallible and strong female characters. Jo March inspired me to do things outside my comfort zone, and I still find myself asking “What would Jo do?” when I’m in a sticky situation.

    Yeah – “Little Women” is my favorite, with “Hunchback of Notre Dame” running a very close second (the French-language version – there is something very special about reading a book in the language in which it was originally written).

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  25. Christina #

    Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, hands down. Read for school in 6th grade (when I was 12), and I’ve read it a couple dozen times since then. I am now 21.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
    • Corey #

      Ender’s Game is my favorite too. Speaker for the Dead is great too if you haven’t read that.

      Like

      May 20, 2011
  26. Dave T #

    All time: Rabbit Run by John Updike.
    Recently: A Visit from the Good Squad by Jennifer Egan.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
    • First time I’ve seen Rabbit, Run as a favorite book. Nice. Enjoyed it but it was definitely a depressing one.

      Like

      May 20, 2011
  27. The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell. I’ve only read it once. I need to read like 18 more times.

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    May 20, 2011
  28. My favorite book of all time is The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien. I can’t separate them into 3 so I just say the whole series.

    Also, the most influential book had to have been Desiring God by John Piper.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  29. Wow. And I thought it was hard choosing my top ten favorite books a few weeks ago. I am going to have to go with Walden by Thoreau. I read it every Spring and I never get tired of it.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  30. Greg #

    A Wild Sheep Chase by Haruki Murakami!

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  31. B Day #

    As always, it kind of depends on which way the wind is blowing…today let’s say Shades of Gray, by Jasper Fforde.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  32. Kathy #

    Jane Eyre…BEST Book EVER!

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  33. Steve #

    A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court

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    May 20, 2011
  34. Pete M #

    Freedom by Jonathan Franzen

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  35. The Reader by Bernard Schlink. It’s so deeply moving that I consider it one of the books that changed my life and the way I see the world. A must-read if you haven’t done so already.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  36. “The Catcher in the Rye”: When I read the book, I was almost the same age he was. I could really connect to what he was going through. I’m also from New York and that made the connection even stronger.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  37. Just one is hard to choose, but if I were stranded on a desert island for the rest of my life and I could read only one book over and over and I had no other options for entertainment– I guess I’d pick The Great Gatsby. In addition to being beautiful and tragic, it would reward heavy rereading.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  38. I would have to say Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. Not very literary for someone with an English degree… but I got a little burned out and have yet to rekindle the flame for classic fiction. Maybe if I have a new book… :)

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  39. R.E. Lee by Douglas Southall Freman. For 4 volumes, through the incredible writing of Freeman, I was transported back to walk with one of America’s truly great men.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  40. Ben #

    Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling.

    I’m still engrossed about the story even though I’ve read it months already. Last night, I was dreaming of disapparating :]

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  41. Jake W. #

    Blood Meridian. Totally violent. Totally worth it.

    Like

    May 20, 2011
  42. Great idea!

    Just to be typically Canadian and female, I’m going to have to go with Margaret Atwood’s Oryx and Crake. Dystopic fiction is not for everyone, but this book threaded together so many themes in such a believable yet otherworldly manner. It was also entertaining as all get out.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  43. Wow, I grew up reading science fiction, but the past few years I’ve been reading romance to help me become a published author in the field. I’d say the one that “messed me up” as a child so was my favorite was Robert A. Heinlein’s Stranger in a Strange Land. Really tied with Joe Halderman’s The Forever War. Yes, I would love a free book, thank you! I admire you for your commitment.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  44. Amy Morgan #

    How sweet of you!
    Without a doubt, Charlotte’s Web by E.B. White.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  45. Manda #

    The Giver by Lois Lowry

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  46. Choosing only one best book of all time is cruel and unusual punishment.
    Childhood Favorite: Little Women by Lousia May Alcott
    Teen Favorite: Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
    Adult Classic Favorite: David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
    Contemporary Adult Favorite: Sarum by Edward Rutherfurd
    Jodi

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  47. A great blog on what we can learn from the great novels. When I read, I do pay attention to story and the writer’s voice. I find it fascinating, it’s like unlocking some great mystery. As a writer hoping to get published, I try and learn from the masters. There are so many great books and so little time. Thanks for the thoughts.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  48. D.Fuentes #

    My favorite book of all times is Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult. It changes your prospective about how you see the worl, other people and even yourself. Picoult’s writing is so amazing that you can feel the pain and worries of her characters as if they were your own.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  49. Jerry #

    Favorite book of all time? Gotta go with Infinite Jest. Picked it up by chance around 2004 and it got me into serious reading.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  50. The Giver by Lois Lowry. I read it for the first time in fifth grade and have read it multiple times since. A world in which freedom isn’t even a known concept was so foreign to me. During my first reading I was so sad and upset for Jonas thinking about how turned around his life was. But I also secretly decided that I would work in the nursery with the brand-new babies if I had to live in that world. Such an amazing book.

    Like

    May 21, 2011
  51. The Ciderhouse Rules – John Irving
    Just amazing, something different for a change

    Like

    May 22, 2011
  52. Neil Glackin #

    ‘Dubliners’ by James Joyce. Incredible piece of work that I always go back to for inspiration and just to relax and enjoy his amazing writing. In particular I love the story ‘Eveline’. The first line of it is one of my favourite lines ever, “She sat at the window watching the evening invade the avenue”, its just so simple yet brilliant. Being from Ireland I guess I have a bit of bias for Joyce but I just think he was the most incredible writer and ‘Dubliners’ isn’t as difficult as say ‘Portrait of the Artist…’ or ‘Ulysess’. I wonder would it be on the list if the time period extended back before 1923. What do you think? Have you read this book?

    Great blog by the way! ;)

    Like

    May 24, 2011
  53. I am about halfway through Infinite Jest and that will likely not make the list. I can’t decide if I love it or hate it. I started out loving it. About midway through the first half of the first half, I started hating it. Now, I have stopped pushing to finish it and allowed myself the luxury of taking it slow and absorbing it. So now I am not sure, but I am sure it is not my favorite — at least not yet. I just read As I Lay Dying, which is another book I know I am supposed to love. I liked it. So to make a long answer shorter… Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem. It is probably not my all-time favorite, but the first thing that came into my brain as a recent favorite and that, at least, allows me to provide an answer to the question.

    Like

    May 24, 2011
  54. Amber #

    I know I will probably sound like a moody, angst ridden teenage girl who writes bad poetry, but I fall in love with Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar every time I read it. Oh, and James Baldwin’s Go Tell It On the Mountain.

    Like

    May 24, 2011
  55. Teresa #

    I’m writing too late to qualify for the drawing, but my favorite book is Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert Pirsig.

    Like

    May 30, 2011

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