Novels that shaped our world

This month, the BBC is embarking on an ambitious celebration of literature. It is part of a year-long festival in partnership with libraries and reading groups around the UK led by ‘Libraries Connected’ and supported by Arts Council England. The BBC has assembled an expert panel of six leading British writers, curators and critics to reveal the English language titles that have shaped their world in a 100-strong list designed to ‘spark debate about the novels that have had a big impact on us all personally and culturally’. Greene’s The Quiet American is among the chosen titles.

The list of 100 novels, which forms the centre-piece of the Corporation’s participation in the event, will be spearheaded by a BBC Two three-part series called ‘Novels That Shaped Our World’ which begins on Saturday 9th November at 9pm. The 100 novels have been divided into groups of around ten and have been allocated a common theme. In the case of The Quiet American, the theme is Conflict and Crime. The Conflict and Crime group of books will feature in September 2020.

Clearly, this is a land-mark project for the BBC and for libraries up and down the country. It carries the admirable aim of encouraging the public to read more novels, because, according Jonty Claypole, Director of BBC Arts, ‘of the proven life-enhancing benefits it brings’. More details can be found in an article in The Bookseller magazine which can be read by following the link below: