The Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge

In case you didn't know, I am a HUGE ( and I mean HUUUUUGE) Gilmore Girls fan. It is my all-time favorite television show and I was so upset when the show ended. It has been a big part of my life. My mom and I watched it together every week when the new episodes would come on. My best friends and I absolutely adore this show; we quote it often and we've even had marathons. I own every season on DVD and I watch it frequently, never tiring of it. The witty banter between the characters makes it comical as well as intelligent. There's some drama to keep it interesting and of course there's some romance.

If you don't know anything about the show, or you've never heard of it, let me give you a little insight. Lorelai Gilmore is a single mother with a sixteen year old daughter who is also named Lorelai Gilmore who goes by the name of Rory. Lorelai is the daughter of the very wealthy Richard and Emily Gilmore, whom she hasn't seen since Rory was an infant. Lorelai didn't have the best relationship with her parents, and when she had Rory at the age of sixteen, she left and moved to a small town called Stars Hollow, just outside of Hartford, Connecticut. She began working at the Independence Inn and worked her way up to manager. She vowed to never accept any help from her parents whatsoever; she wanted to be an independent woman and give Rory the life that she never had growing up. Lorelai and Rory are very close, more best friends than mother and daughter, and when Rory gets accepted into Chilton (a very prestigious private school), Lorelai is forced to ask her parents for money to help fund her education, thus creating the infamous Friday Night Dinners. In exchange for money, Emily proposes that Lorelai and Rory eat dinner every friday night at their house. And Rory, being the kind girl that she is, graciously agrees to the dinners, instantly striking up a close relationship with her grandparents. This is just a small amount of information, a lot of which you discover within the first episode. Another thing you learn about the Gilmore girls, is that Lorelai is a devoted drinker of coffee (as am I), and Rory is a bookworm, just like myself (and several of my followers). I think this is one of the reasons that I love this show so much: it's not just a teenage drama. It's full of intelligent conversations, comical banter, pop-culture references, and it quotes tons of books. Rory has a book in tow in almost episode. She's very academic, and it's obvious throughout every episode that the creators were lovers of books and pop-culture as well.

With that being said, I have come to the conclusion that I cannot possibly be this big of a fan, and not have read most, if not all, of the books that are mentioned throughout the seven seasons the show was on air. This is why I have decided that at the beginning of 2013 I will start a Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge in which I will attempt to read several of the books that Rory Gilmore read and/or mentioned on the show. If you would like to join me, I have found a list of said books and I have posted them below. And believe me when I say that it is A LOT. It is very doubtful that I will read them all. Several of them aren't within my interest so I shall put the books I intend on reading in bold and strike-through the books that I have already read (which isn't many). The titles in bold may be books that I have never read or books that I plan on rereading, although most will be books that I haven't.

With that being said I will make it my goal to read at least 25 of the books on this list within the next year. It could be the first 25 books I have put in bold or it could be random. I haven't decided yet, but nonetheless, I will try to read that many of the books on this list. In 2014, I will attempt to read 25 more and so on until I have read all of the books I have in bold.

The Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge List of Books

(in alphabetical order)

1. 1984 by George Orwell
2. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain
3. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
4. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay by Michael Chabon
5. An American Tragedy by Theodore Dreiser
6. Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt
7. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
8. Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank
9. Archidamian War by Donald Kagan
10. The Art of Fiction by Henry James
11. The Art of War by Sun Tzu
12. As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
13. Atonement by Ian McEwan
14. Autobiography of a Face by Lucy Grealy
15. The Awakening by Kate Chopin
16. Babe by Dick King-Smith
17. Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women by Susan Faludi
18. Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress by Dai Sijie
19. Bel Canto by Ann Patchett
20. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath
21. Beloved by Toni Morrison
22. Beowulf: A New Verse Translation by Seamus Heaney
23. The Bhagava Gita
24. The Bielski Brothers: The True Story of Three Men Who Defied the Nazis, Built a Village in the Forest, and Saved 1,200 Jews by Peter Duffy
25. Bitch in Praise of Difficult Women by Elizabeth Wurtzel
26. A Bolt from the Blue and Other Essays by Mary McCarthy
27. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley
28. Brick Lane by Monica Ali
29. Bridgadoon by Alan Jay Lerner
30. Candide by Voltaire
31. The Canterbury Tales by Chaucer
32. Carrie by Stephen King
33. Catch-22 by Joseph Heller
34. The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger
35. Charlotte's Web by E. B. White
36. The Children's Hour by Lillian Hellman
37. Christine by Stephen King
38. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens
39. A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
40. The Code of the Woosters by P.G. Wodehouse
41. The Collected Short Stories by Eudora Welty
42. The Collected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora Welty
43. A Comedy of Errors by William Shakespeare
44. Complete Novels by Dawn Powell
45. The Complete Poems by Anne Sexton
46. Complete Stories by Dorothy Parker
47. A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole
48. The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas p�re
49. Cousin Bette by Honor'e de Balzac
50. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
 51. The Crimson Petal and the White by Michel Faber
52. The Crucible by Arthur Miller
53. Cujo by Stephen King
54. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
55. Daughter of Fortune by Isabel Allende
56. David and Lisa by Dr Theodore Issac Rubin M.D
57. David Copperfield by Charles Dickens
58. The Da Vinci -Code by Dan Brown
59. Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol
60. Demons by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
61. Death of a Salesman by Arthur Miller
62. Deenie by Judy Blume
63. The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson
64. The Dirt: Confessions of the World's Most Notorious Rock Band by Tommy Lee, Vince Neil, Mick Mars and Nikki Sixx
65. The Divine Comedy by Dante
66. The Divine Secrets of the Ya-Ya Sisterhood by Rebecca Wells
67. Don Quixote by Cervantes
68. Driving Miss Daisy by Alfred Uhrv
69. Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson
70. Edgar Allan Poe: Complete Tales & Poems by Edgar Allan Poe
71. Eleanor Roosevelt by Blanche Wiesen Cook
72. The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe
73. Ella Minnow Pea: A Novel in Letters by Mark Dunn
74. Eloise by Kay Thompson
75. Emily the Strange by Roger Reger
76. Emma by Jane Austen
77. Empire Falls by Richard Russo
78. Encyclopedia Brown: Boy Detective by Donald J. Sobol
79. Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton
80. Ethics by Spinoza
81. Europe through the Back Door, 2003 by Rick Steves
82. Eva Luna by Isabel Allende
83. Everything Is Illuminated by Jonathan Safran Foer
84. Extravagance: A Novel by Gary Krist
85. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
86. Fahrenheit 9/11 by Michael Moore
87. The Fall of the Athenian Empire by Donald Kagan
88. Fat Land: How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World by Greg Critser
89. Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson
90. The Fellowship of the Ring: Book 1 of The Lord of the Ring by J. R. R. Tolkien
91. Fiddler on the Roof by Joseph Stein
92. The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
93. Finnegan's Wake by James Joyce
94. Fletch by Gregory McDonald
95. Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes
96. The Fortress of Solitude by Jonathan Lethem
97. The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand
98. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley
99. Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger
100. Freaky Friday by Mary Rodgers
101. Galapagos by Kurt Vonnegut
102. Gender Trouble by Judith Butler
103. George W. Bushism: The Slate Book of the Accidental Wit and Wisdom of our 43rd President by Jacob Weisberg
104. Gidget by Fredrick Kohner
105. Girl, Interrupted by Susanna Kaysen
106. The Gnostic Gospels by Elaine Pagels
107. The Godfather: Book 1 by Mario Puzo
108. The God of Small Things by Arundhati Roy
109. Goldilocks and the Three Bears by Alvin Granowsky
110. Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
111. The Good Soldier by Ford Maddox Ford
112. The Gospel According to Judy Bloom
113. The Graduate by Charles Webb
114. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
115. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
116. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens
117. The Group by Mary McCarthy
118. Hamlet by William Shakespeare
119. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling
120. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone by J. K. Rowling
121. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius by Dave Eggers
122. Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad
123. Helter Skelter: The True Story of the Manson Murders by Vincent Bugliosi and Curt Gentry
124. Henry IV, part I by William Shakespeare
125. Henry IV, part II by William Shakespeare
126. Henry V by William Shakespeare
127. High Fidelity by Nick Hornby
128. The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire by Edward Gibbon
129. Holidays on Ice: Stories by David Sedaris
130. The Holy Barbarians by Lawrence Lipton
131. House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubus III
132. The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
133. How to Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer
134. How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
135. How the Light Gets in by M. J. Hyland
136. Howl by Allen Gingsburg
137. The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo
138. The Iliad by Homer
139. I'm with the Band by Pamela des Barres
140. In Cold Blood by Truman Capote
141. Inferno by Dante
142. Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee
143. Iron Weed by William J. Kennedy
144. It Takes a Village by Hillary Clinton
145. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
146. The Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan
147. Julius Caesar by William Shakespeare
148. The Jumping Frog by Mark Twain
149. The Jungle by Upton Sinclair
150. Just a Couple of Days by Tony Vigorito
151. The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar by Robert Alexander
152. Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain
153. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
154. Lady Chatterleys' Lover by D. H. Lawrence
155. The Last Empire: Essays 1992-2000 by Gore Vidal
156. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman
157. The Legend of Bagger Vance by Steven Pressfield
158. Less Than Zero by Bret Easton Ellis
159. Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
160. Lies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al Franken
161. Life of Pi by Yann Martel
162. Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
163. The Little Locksmith by Katharine Butler Hathaway
164. The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen
165. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
166. Living History by Hillary Rodham Clinton
167. Lord of the Flies by William Golding
168. The Lottery: And Other Stories by Shirley Jackson
169. The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
170. The Love Story by Erich Segal
171. Macbeth by William Shakespeare
172. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert
173. The Manticore by Robertson Davies
174. Marathon Man by William Goldman
175. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov
176. Memoirs of a Dutiful Daughter by Simone de Beauvoir
178. Memoirs of General W. T. Sherman by William Tecumseh Sherman
179. Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris
180. The Meaning of Consuelo by Judith Ortiz Cofer
181. Mencken's Chrestomathy by H. R. Mencken
182. The Merry Wives of Windsro by William Shakespeare
183. The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
184. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
185. The Miracle Worker by William Gibson
186. Moby Dick by Herman Melville
187. The Mojo Collection: The Ultimate Music Companion by Jim Irvin
188. Moliere: A Biography by Hobart Chatfield Taylor
189. A Monetary History of the United States by Milton Friedman
190. Monsieur Proust by Celeste Albaret
191. A Month Of Sundays: Searching For The Spirit And My Sister by Julie Mars
192. A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
193. Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Woolf
194. Mutiny on the Bounty by Charles Nordhoff and James Norman Hall
195. My Lai 4: A Report on the Massacre and It's Aftermath by Seymour M. Hersh
196. My Life as Author and Editor by H. R. Mencken
197. My Life in Orange: Growing Up with the Guru by Tim Guest
198. Myra Waldo's Travel and Motoring Guide to Europe, 1978 by Myra Waldo
199. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
200. The Naked and the Dead by Norman Mailer
201. The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco
202. The Namesake by Jhumpa Lahiri
203. The Nanny Diaries by Emma McLaughlin
204. Nervous System: Or, Losing My Mind in Literature by Jan Lars Jensen
205. New Poems of Emily Dickinson by Emily Dickinson
206. The New Way Things Work by David Macaulay
207. Nickel and Dimed by Barbara Ehrenreich
208. Night by Elie Wiesel
209. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
210. The Norton Anthology of Theory and Criticism by William E. Cain, Laurie A. Finke, Barbara E. Johnson, John P. McGowan
211. Novels 1930-1942: Dance Night/Come Back to Sorrento, Turn, Magic Wheel/Angels on Toast/A Time to be Born by Dawn Powell
212. Notes of a Dirty Old Man by Charles Bukowski
213. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
214. Old School by Tobias Wolff
215. On the Road by Jack Kerouac
216. One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey
217. One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez
218. The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life by Amy Tan
219. Oracle Night by Paul Auster
220. Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
221. Othello by Shakespeare
222. Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens
223. The Outbreak of the Peloponnesian War by Donald Kagan
224. Out of Africa by Isac Dineson
225. The Outsiders by S. E. Hinton
226. A Passage to India by E.M. Forster
227. The Peace of Nicias and the Sicilian Expedition by Donald Kagan
228. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky
229. Peyton Place by Grace Metalious
230. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
231. Pigs at the Trough by Arianna Huffington
232. Pinocchio by Carlo Collodi
233. Please Kill Me: The Uncensored Oral History of Punk Legs McNeil and Gillian McCain
234. The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby
235. The Portable Dorothy Parker by Dorothy Parker
236. The Portable Nietzche by Fredrich Nietzche
237. The Price of Loyalty: George W. Bush, the White House, and the Education of Paul O'Neill by Ron Suskind
238. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
239. Property by Valerie Martin
240. Pushkin: A Biography by T. J. Binyon
241. Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw
242. Quattrocento by James Mckean
243. A Quiet Storm by Rachel Howzell Hall
244. Rapunzel by Grimm Brothers
245. The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe
246. The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maugham
247. Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books by Azar Nafisi
248. Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier
249. Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin
250. The Red Tent by Anita Diamant
251. Rescuing Patty Hearst: Memories From a Decade Gone Mad by Virginia Holman
252. The Return of the King: The Lord of the Rings Book 3 by J. R. R. Tolkien
253. R Is for Ricochet by Sue Grafton
254. Rita Hayworth by Stephen King
255. Robert's Rules of Order by Henry Robert
256. Roman Holiday by Edith Wharton
257. Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare
258. A Room of One's Own by Virginia Woolf
259. A Room with a View by E. M. Forster
260. Rosemary's Baby by Ira Levin
261. The Rough Guide to Europe, 2003 Edition
262. Sacred Time by Ursula Hegi
263. Sanctuary by William Faulkner
264. Savage Beauty: The Life of Edna St. Vincent Millay by Nancy Milford
265. Say Goodbye to Daisy Miller by Henry James
266. The Scarecrow of Oz by Frank L. Baum
267. The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
268. Seabiscuit: An American Legend by Laura Hillenbrand
269. The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir
270. The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd
271. Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette by Judith Thurman
272. Selected Hotels of Europe
273. Selected Letters of Dawn Powell: 1913-1965 by Dawn Powell
274. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
275. A Separate Peace by John Knowles
276. Several Biographies of Winston Churchill
277. Sexus by Henry Miller
278. The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon
279. Shane by Jack Shaefer
280. The Shining by Stephen King
281. Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
282. S Is for Silence by Sue Grafton
283. Slaughter-house Five by Kurt Vonnegut
284. Small Island by Andrea Levy
285. Snows of Kilimanjaro by Ernest Hemingway
286. Snow White and Rose Red by Grimm Brothers
287. Social Origins of Dictatorship and Democracy: Lord and Peasant in the Making of the Modern World by Barrington Moore
288. The Song of Names by Norman Lebrecht
289. Song of the Simple Truth: The Complete Poems of Julia de Burgos by Julia de Burgos
290. The Song Reader by Lisa Tucker
291. Songbook by Nick Hornby
292. The Sonnets by William Shakespeare
293. Sonnets from the Portuegese by Elizabeth Barrett Browning
294. Sophie's Choice by William Styron
395. The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner
296. Speak, Memory by Vladimir Nabokov
297. Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers by Mary Roach
298. The Story of My Life by Helen Keller
299. A Streetcar Named Desiree by Tennessee Williams
300. Stuart Little by E. B. White
301. Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
302. Swann's Way by Marcel Proust
303. Swimming with Giants: My Encounters with Whales, Dolphins and Seals by Anne Collett
304. Sybil by Flora Rheta Schreiber
305. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
306. Tender Is The Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald
307. Term of Endearment by Larry McMurtry
308. Time and Again by Jack Finney
309. The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
310. To Have and Have Not by Ernest Hemingway
311. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
312. The Tragedy of Richard III by William Shakespeare
313. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith
314. The Trial by Franz Kafka
315. The True and Outstanding Adventures of the Hunt Sisters by Elisabeth Robinson
316. Truth & Beauty: A Friendship by Ann Patchett
317. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
318. Ulysses by James Joyce
319. The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath 1950-1962 by Sylvia Plath
320. Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe
 321. Unless by Carol Shields
322. Valley of the Dolls by Jacqueline Susann
323. The Vanishing Newspaper by Philip Meyers
324. Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
325. Velvet Underground's The Velvet Underground and Nico (Thirty Three and a Third series) by Joe Harvard
326. The Virgin Suicides by Jeffrey Eugenides
327. Waiting for Godot by Samuel Beckett
328. Walden by Henry David Thoreau
329. Walt Disney's Bambi by Felix Salten
330. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
331. We Owe You Nothing – Punk Planet: The Collected Interviews edited by Daniel Sinker
332. What Colour is Your Parachute? 2005 by Richard Nelson Bolles
333. What Happened to Baby Jane by Henry Farrell
334. When the Emperor Was Divine by Julie Otsuka
335. Who Moved My Cheese? Spencer Johnson
336. Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf by Edward Albee
337. Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West by Gregory Maguire
338. The Wizard of Oz by Frank L. Baum
339. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
340. The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawlings
341.The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion

If you would like to know about the books, you can find them all on Goodreads.

You are welcome to join me in this challenge. There are plenty to choose from. You can take on the challenge of reading all 341 books or a select few. There are no rules so you can go at your own pace. You can also add one of the buttons to your website to show that you're doing the challenge. The only thing I ask of you is to comment on this post if you have decided to join the challenge.

Happy Reading!


  1. Wow! That is a lot of books! Good luck with the challenge. I'm still debating it ...

    1. Yes, it's a HUGE amount of books! haha Hence my only choosing 25 of them at the moment. :)

  2. This is one of my all-time favorite shows ever as well! :) I cried when it ended but thought it was very well done. I own them, too, and never tire of watching it. I didn't realize, however, the extensive list of books that had been mentioned over the seasons. Wowzers! I will have to look at the list and see if I think it's something I'd want to do... I'd love to read like Rory! lol Good luck!

    Brandy @ A Little of the Book Life
    ~New Follower~

  3. Never realised they were that many but there are 7 seasons so... :D
    I want to do the challenge, it's exciting!!!!
    Good luck!

  4. I'm on. Well, I actually tried to get started with this challenge some time ago and actually did, but then there was school and work and other fact my whole reading time got mixed up. But I think it is a good time to start again. So thank you for posting this challenge. ;)


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