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_sm Challenge Books 2012

Make new friends, but keep the old
One is silver and the other gold.
Last week, I had lists of books and plays from the 60’s.  This week is the 70’s.

Looking at my latest Science Fiction and Fantasy catalog that I have ordered from for many, many years and which saved my life in the 70’s when I lived in a rural area with no bookstores and a tiny library that could not afford series books, I was appalled.  I still order from them when I can, but there are so many books that are just…well, it reminds me of when I was young and people thought science fiction and fantasy were only pulp fiction.  

As I said last week, I looked at the 100 best sellers list at Barnes & Noble and also winced.

This is why I am looking back at older books and hoping they have not been forgotten and can still be found for younger readers to enjoy.  

Please add your favorites from the list as I only list my own.

Wiki has lists:  (I have not read all of these, but they are ones that I heard about at the time or books that posters here have mentioned)


Judy Blume – Are You There, God? It's Me, Margaret

Robertson Davies – Fifth Business  The first book of the Deptford Trilogy

Ernest Hemingway – Islands in the Stream

Toni Morrison – The Bluest Eye

Larry Niven – Ringworld

John Jay Osborn, Jr. – The Paper Chase

Mary Stewart – The Crystal Cave

Leon Uris – QB VII

E. B. White – The Trumpet Of The Swan

Roger Zelazny – Nine Princes in Amber

Dee Brown – Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee

Henri Charrière – Papillon

    Note:  from wiki

Charrière supposedly had a reputation as a great fantasizer and storyteller. Thus, Papillon can be said to be more about a fictional character than the author himself. Charrière himself always maintained that his account was accurate and true, and that the story was dictated by him to a professional writer who put it in writing. However, in an interview before he died, the publisher, Robert Laffont, admitted that the book was originally submitted to him as a novel. Laffont specialised in real-life adventures, and persuaded Charrière to release it as if it were an autobiography. The book's title was based on Charrière's nickname, derived from a butterfly tattoo on his chest, papillon being the French word for 'butterfly'.

Frederick Forsyth – The Day of the Jackal

Ernest J. Gaines – The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman

John Gardner – Grendel

Ursula K. Le Guin – The Lathe of Heaven

Alexander Solzhenitsyn – August 1914

Wallace Stegner – Angle of Repose

Herman Wouk – The Winds of War

Carlos Castaneda – A Separate Reality: Further Conversations with Don Juan


Richard Adams – Watership Down

Italo Calvino – Invisible Cities

Robertson Davies – The Manticore

R. F. Delderfield – To Serve Them All My Days

Frederick Forsyth – The Odessa File

James Herriot – All Creatures Great and Small

Chaim Potok – My Name is Asher Lev


William Goldman – The Princess Bride

Graham Greene - The Honorary Consul

Toni Morrison – Sula

Iris Murdoch – The Black Prince

Robert B. Parker – The Godwulf Manuscript

Robert M. Pirsig - Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

Thomas Pynchon – Gravity's Rainbow

Gore Vidal – Burr

Kurt Vonnegut, Jr. – Breakfast of Champions


Peter Benchley - Jaws

Annie Dillard - Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

John le Carré - Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy

Ursula K. Le Guin - The Dispossessed

Madeleine L'Engle - A Wind in the Door

James A. Michener - Centennial

Carl Bernstein & Bob Woodward – All the President's Men

Piers Paul Read - Alive: The Story of the Andes Survivors

Lewis Thomas – The Lives of a Cell: Notes of a Biology Watcher

Joseph Wambaugh - The Onion Field


Edward Abbey – The Monkey Wrench Gang

Natalie Babbitt – Tuck Everlasting

James Clavell – Shōgun

Michael Crichton – The Great Train Robbery

Robertson Davies – World of Wonders

Samuel R. Delany – Dhalgren

E. L. Doctorow – Ragtime

Elizabeth Peters – Crocodile on the Sandbank (the first in the Amelia Peabody series)

Judith Rossner – Looking for Mister Goodbar

Joseph Wambaugh – The Choirboys

Paul Theroux – The Great Railway Bazaar


Judy Blume
   Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

Erma Bombeck – The Grass is Always Greener over the Septic Tank

Judith Guest – Ordinary People

Alex Haley – Roots: The Saga of an American Family

Leon Uris – Trinity

Richard Dawkins – The Selfish Gene

Simon Wiesenthal – The Sunflower


Marilyn French – The Women's Room

Toni Morrison – Song of Solomon

P. G. Wodehouse – Sunset at Blandings (posthumous)


Nelson DeMille – By the Rivers of Babylon

Graham Greene – The Human Factor

John Irving – The World According to Garp

M. M. Kaye – The Far Pavilions

Stephen King – The Stand

James A. Michener – Chesapeake

Tim O'Brien – Going After Cacciato

Herman Wouk – War and Remembrance


Douglas Adams – The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy

John le Carré – Smiley's People

Morgan Llywelyn – Lion of Ireland: The Legend of Brian Boru

Mary Stewart – The Last Enchantment

William Styron – Sophie's Choice

Roger Zelazny -Roadmarks

Trevanian -Shibumi

David Attenborough – Life on Earth

I have read 46 of these.

Please share your favorites and ones I did not list.

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Originally posted to Readers and Book Lovers on Wed Jul 04, 2012 at 05:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by Progressive Friends of the Library Newsletter and DKOMA.


Which is your favorite book of the 70s?

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| 38 votes | Vote | Results

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