Top Ten Tuesday: Longest Books I’ve Ever Read

Top Ten Tuesday new

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.

The rules are simple:

  • Each Tuesday, Jana assigns a new topic. Create your own Top Ten list that fits that topic – putting your unique spin on it if you want.
  • Everyone is welcome to join but please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own Top Ten Tuesday post.
  • Add your name to the Linky widget on that day’s post so that everyone can check out other bloggers’ lists.
  • Or if you don’t have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.

This week’s topic is Top Ten Longest Books I’ve Ever Read.  My list was compiled from my Read shelf on Goodreads, sorted in descending page number order. The page number count is as shown on Goodreads.  Click on the title to see the book description on Goodreads.

And Quiet Flows the Don by Mikhail Sholokov (1,408 pages)

The Quincunx by Charles Palliser (1,248 pages)

The Sunne in Splendour by Sharon Kay Penman (936 pages)

Mary, Queen of Scotland and the Isles by Margaret George (870 pages)

A Game of Thrones (A Song of Fire and Ice #1) by George R. R. Martin (848 pages)

A Clash of Kings (A Song of Fire and Ice #2) by George R. R. Martin (784 pages)

The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt (774 pages)

The Physician (Cole Family Trilogy #1) by Noah Gordon (720 pages)

The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova (704 pages)

The Meaning of Night by Michael Cox (703 pages)

A few thoughts as a result of compiling this list:

  • Most of these books I read over 5 years ago
  • I’ve become less likely to read long books in recent years
  • I’m not too good at finishing series
  • Some of these books seemed even longer than they actually were. The Goldfinch, I’m looking at you…
  • There are authors who love to write whoppers of books

What’s the longest book you’ve ever read?


29 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Longest Books I’ve Ever Read

  1. I’ve become less likely to read long books, too, Cathy. I was looking at John dos Passos’ U.S.A recently which I loved when I read it but I’m not sure I could face it now. This year I’ve been tending towards novellas.

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    1. Interesting you mention Dos Passos as I confess I’d never heard of him until I started the book I’m currently reading – The Black Prince by Adam Roberts. It’s based on an unpublished screenplay by Anthony Burgess who was a fan of Dos Passos and his literary techniques.

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    1. I’ve never really got into audio books. The exception is when I had to study John Milton’s Paradise Lost for my Masters degree. The only way I got through that was listening to an audio book version (read by the wonderful British actor, Anton Lesser) alongside reading the text.


      1. I spend a lot of time in my car and thats what really started me on the audiobook train. There are some I just can’t do though because the voice acting is just horrid.


  2. Just discovered your blog, because of these long book posts! I liked it a lot 🙂 Physician is on my list for long time, did you like it? I dreaded Goldfinch, I’m sorry, it was a difficult read for me. Longest book I read, and probably my favourite book ever is Les Miserables. Happy Tuesday!


  3. I too find myself staying away from longer books (although I did read The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle which was quite long) but I just don’t have the time for them, usually. I read the entire “Song of Fire and Ice” series years ago, with the latter books in the series going well over a 1000 pages. I wouldn’t be able to do that now.

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  4. I have a few Martin books on my list too! Love The Historian! Although, the first time I “read” it, it was an audiobook and I didn’t realize that I’d accidentally purchased the abridged version (it had a full cast reading). I fell in love with the audio and I’d re-listen almost every October. Then I joined a readalong and realized just how long it was! So good though. 😉

    My Top Ten Tuesday

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    1. It was many years ago, before I was recording what I read on Goodreads (probably before Goodreads was even invented!) so I can’t say for sure but I suspect quite a few weeks! Got a feeling I have read the sequel as well…


    1. I’ll be honest, I struggled with The Goldfinch and found it a hard slog. Having loved Tartt’s The Secret History, I kept going hoping it would get better but unfortunately it didn’t. I found it way too slow, rather depressing, bleak and nihilistic in its view of humanity. However, I know that others have a completely different view of it.


    1. I think you’re right. Blogging has made me aware how many wonderful books are out there and less inclined to read a large book if I could read two or three others in the same time.


  5. Nice list. How did you like The Quincunx? You are the first person in blogs that I come across who actually read it. I guess something similar is The Luminaries, one of the longest books I read. When you begin to read The Luminaries, the length of the book is the least of your concerns. The complexity of the plot and the multitude of perspectives are overbearing. Having said that, it is one of the best and most ingenious books I have ever read in my life.

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    1. It was a while ago I read The Quincunx but I remember enjoying it. I think have a couple of the author’s subsequent books on my wishlist although if I’ll ever get round to reading them is another matter. I’ve been aware of The Luminaries since it first came out and your description has got me intrigued. However, I do find myself less reluctant to tackle large books these days. (I’m summoning up the courage to start on Tombland by C J Sansom, although I love the series.) Audio book might be the answer. I’m going to try that with Tombland as I have a longish flight in a few months time.

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