Books, reading, Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Books to read in one day…(with a twist)

This Top Ten Tuesday feature is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish and I first came across it on Jaime´s blog. It´s a lot of fun and they post the topics way in advance! And here comes my second Top Ten Tuesday:

Top Ten Books to read in one day

I decided to go about this post a little differently and present you with *tadadadaaddaada* (–> music full of suspense) with the “Top Ten French Books to read in one day”.  I was trying to only include those translated in English but unfortunately I am realizing that a lot of works I loved reading as teenager and today are not yet translated…so here is a mix.

  • 1. The Children of Freedom by Marc Lévy: A remarkable story of struggle and survival in World War II by France’s No. 1 bestselling novelist Early in 1942, two young brothers join a Resistance group. All the members of the group are young, most of their families came from elsewhere in Europe or North Africa and all of them are passionately committed to the freedom of France and Europe (from Goodreads).
  • 2. Lettres à un ami allemand by Albert Camus: These letters are History. These letters are here to make us think, reflect and pause for a minute. These letters show us the past but they teach us about the present.  “I love my country too much to be nationalist” . Apparently those letters are available in English in some anthology of Camus.
  • 3. Green Wheat by Colette: Phil and Vinca meet every year during the summer holidays. They know each other and have always been interested in the other, but Phil meets a woman who introduces him to carnal love. Vinca feels the betrayal of her friend. The most recent English translation of the novel (2004) is Green Wheat, translated by Zack Rogow, nominated for the PEN/Book-of-the-Month Club Translation Award. According to the ratings on, people did not like this book. I loved it! This book written in 1923 describes feelings in such a magestic way. Yes, the protagonists do not know what they want but they’re growing up. Their worries may be different than the ones of today but so many are still the same because those emotions just transcend time and places.
  • 4/5/6 Viou by Henri Troyat (and the other two sequels): Those three books follow the life of Sylvie (also known as Viou). Viou highlights her life right after the war. Her father died and she is under the care of her grandparents. Her mother is gone in Paris where she tries to rebuild her life. The separation is very hard on the little girl. The first book shows her worries, her hopes and the sufferings of a child who discovers the world of adults. In the second book, Viou is 15, she lives in Paris with her mother and her stepfather. She resents the relationship and throws herself in ballet as well as discovering new types of emotions with the son of her stepfather. The last book shows Viou at the age of 21. Her mother is divorcing her step-father and Viou revolts against the idea, not wanting what had become her idea of a stable relationship to collapse.
  • 7 Manuella by Philippe Labro: The story of a 17-year old discovering love and herself during the holidays after receiving her high school diploma. I really enjoyed that book! and I remember it made quite a fuss when it was published in France because it was a 40-year old something writing the life of a teenager…(in the first person if I recall correctly).
  • 8. Le dernier jour d’un condamné by Victor Hugo: Deeply shocking in its time, The Last Day of a Condemned Man is a profound and moving tale and a vital work of social commentary. A man vilified by society and condemned to death for his crime wakes every morning knowing that this day might be his last. With the hope for release his only comfort, he spends his hours recounting his life and the time before his imprisonment. But as the hours pass, he knows that he is powerless to change his fate. He must follow the path so many have trod before him—the path that leads to the guillotine. (Summary from
  • 9. Antigone by Jean Anouilh: Antigone was originally produced in Paris in 1942, when France was occupied and part of Hitler’s Europe. The play depicts an authoritarian regime which mirrors the predicament of the French people of the time. Based on Sophocles’ ancient Greek tragedy, Antigone which was first performed in Athens in the 5th century BC, its theme was nevertheless topical. For in Antigone’s faithfulness to her dead brother and his proper burial and her reiterated “No!” to the dictator Creon, the French audience saw its own resistance to the German occupation. The Germans allowed the play to be performed presumably because they found Creon’s arguments for dictatorship so convincing. The play is regularly performed and studied around the world.”Anouilh is a poet, but not a poet of words: he is a poet of words-acted, of scenes-set, of players-performing” Peter Brook (Summary from I loved, loved, loved that play!
  • 10. Angelique by Anne Godon: The story begins in 1648 during a time of insurrection, terror and revolt in a divided France. Angélique de Sance de Monteloup, a vibrant twelve-year-old tomboy, is the daughter of a simple nobleman impoverished by taxes and other burdens. (Summary from I still watch the movies based on those books 😀

So…here is my list (as always much much shorter than the one I have in my head :D)

Tell me which is the one book you read in one day and still sticks to your mind?


16 thoughts on “Top Ten Books to read in one day…(with a twist)”

  1. The only french book I remember reading this fast would probably be Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran by Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt, although I’m not quite sure if it was one day or maybe two days…
    The last (english) book I tore through this fast was Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson 🙂

  2. There’s a definite historical flavor to your youthful reading, Elodie, which of course is completely cool since I think history is fascinating. I actually tried translating the French titles before reading your rendition… and I did surprisingly well. I might have to try to get hold of one of these in French for practice. I’m sure it’ll take me more than a day to read, though. Perhaps a year! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  3. Great list! Are the ones with French titles the ones that haven’t been translated into English yet? I had to smile at your note about Manuella and the fuss over the author’s age – we would never think that that was an issue, in English-speaking countries! I still haven’t read any Colette. 😦 I’m intrigued by Angelique, I’ll have to check it out.

    Here’s my list.

    1. I know I remember when that book came out and the discussions started. I´m going to have to dig up some articles at some point to show the fuss 😀
      From Colette, I have not read everything but I really really enjoyed that one. Angelique is epic 😀

  4. You’re a trooper. It would take me weeks to read some of these. And some of them sound magical, I can’t wait to read a few.

  5. I know I’ve read at least one French novel during school (for French class), but I can’t remember what it was called. I have a couple of the Harry Potter books in French, though, and I should probably try to tackle them at some point to brush up on my French 😀

    1. Yay! Go Jaime go 😀 Between brushing up your German and your French, we´ll be able to tweet in 3 languages 😀 Would be awesome!

  6. Haha – the only book I think I read in one day is New Moon, and only because it was Thanksgiving and I could not, NOT eat until I found out what happened to Edward. And by then, I was almost finished. 🙂

    Great list! I remember reading oodles of French literature for my senior year AP French class, but the only one in common with these is Antigone. I always enjoyed Le Petit Prince. 🙂

    1. If the Twilight books had been written in French, they totally would have made it to that list 😀

      So Alison, devrions-nous parler francais? 😀

  7. Oh dear, I think I’ll be adding at least a couple of those to my wish list lol

    I’ve only ever read one book in a day and that was Emotional Geology by Linda Gillard. I just couldn’t put it down. The imagery and scenery were incredible. I was all ready to up sticks and move to the Orkney Isles lol


    1. I have never read EMOTIONAL GEOLOGY, will have to check it out 😀 Let me know if you do end up reading some of those, I´d love to hear your thoughts!

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