Standard lists of books I should have read by now always make me queasy. At this stage of my life, shouldn't the top three be in my dust by now?
My defense: I once bought a used paperback of Tristram Shandy but have never been all that interested in tackling it. I have, on the other hand, tacked Middlemarch a number of times, and always lose interest by page 98. I could stand to read
Great Expectations, but the sad fact is no one ever forced it on me in school. I'll probably read it sometime soon. Just this week I'm reading A Tale of Two Cities for the first time. No one ever made me read that either.
Never read any Graham Swift, either. I know and like all the rest on the list. Of these, the one I'd most look forward to reading again -- if only for easy pleasure it affords -- is Waugh's A Handful of Dust, a novel of wicked perfection.