According to the latest Watch and Listen magazine poll just out yesterday (Wednesday, October 28), Michel Houellebecq 2010 bestseller The Map and the Territory is now considered to be the Greatest Book in the History of Literature.
UPDATE 29/10/2020 : This story seems to be false. (read more)
Top 100 books of all time
To many of you it’s probably a familiar story. Once every decade, the world-renowned literary magazine Watch and Listen conducts a global poll of book publishers and critics from 80 different countries and translated into 20 languages. The recognition of The Map and the Territory in this decade's list doesn't come as much of a surprise.
Here are the top 5 best books ever written in the world, according to the poll (followed by the percentage of votes):
- The Map and the Territory (Michel Houellebecq, 2010, France) : 45%
- Don Quixote (Cervantes, 1605, Spain) : 23%
- The Three Musketeers (Alexandre Dumas, 1844, France) : 17%
- Harry Potter (J. K. Rowling, 1997-2007, United Kingdom) : 7%
- Lolita (Vladimir Nabokov, 1955, Russia) : 3%
Poll results stir controversy among literary critics
While millions of Houellebecq's fans in France and around the world were thrilled with the news, questions have been raised about the objectivity and fairness of the survey. Only a few minutes after the poll had been released, famous literary critic and newspaper director Simon Ebert commented on his Twitter account:
Michel Houellebecq?? The Map and the Territory?? … Really??
— Simon Ebert (@ESimon) 28 October 2020
“Our poll has in the past been the subject of criticism”, explains Watch and Listen's editor Gary McDermott, adding that “its prestige comes from its exclusivity and its longevity” (the poll has been run every ten years since October 1930).
Do you agree with this poll? Is the Map and the Territory the best book ever for you?
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