S.G. Browne

N is for No and 1984

Well, the second half of the alphabet starts off with a lot of empty seats in the audience. Not that it’s a reflection on the quality of titles for this entry, just the quantity. Two titles, no wild cards, and only four total books I’ve read that start with the letter N. I even searched on the Internet for books I might have read and forgotten about and couldn’t find anything remotely familiar.

Other than the two titles that I’d recommend, the only other books I’ve read for this entry are both by Stephen King: Needful Things and Nightmares and Dreamscapes. And while I love King, I can’t bump either of these two titles into the third spot on the list.

So on to the best two books I’ve read that begin with the letter N:

Top Dog:
1984, George Orwell
Give me a better and more influential dystopian novel than this one and I’ll put it on my list of books to read. Orwell’s novel about a totalitarian regime and a manipulated society is a cautionary satire about nationalism, sexual repression, and censorship, condemning intellectualism and emotional intimacy. It also spawned several terms and concepts that have become common in contemporary usage, including the term Orwellian. And while the Thought Police might not be a reality, Big Brother is watching you.

Second Fiddle:
No Sleep Till Wonderland, Paul Tremblay
This is the sequel to Tremblay’s The Little Sleep,¬†an homage to the benchmark of detective noir novels, The Big Sleep, by Raymond Chandler. The play on words with the titles alludes to the main character, a down-and-out private detective who suffers from narcolepsy, which causes him to nod off and hallucinate at inopportune moments. The writing is crisp and engaging, the plot intriguing, and the humor sharp and often laugh-out-loud funny. While both books are fun reads, I liked No Sleep Till Wonderland a little bit more.

Filed under: Movies and Books — Tags: , , , — S.G. Browne @ 5:18 pm


  1. I have to find a way to take advantage of the lack of ‘N’ novels in existence!

    Thanks for the read and good words! Glad you liked the book.


    Comment by paul tremblay — July 28, 2010 @ 4:32 am

  2. Enjoyed them both and recommend them to anyone who will listen. And I have to say, your books got me to read “The Big Sleep” and “The Maltese Falcon,” though I prefer Chandler’s writing to Hammett’s.

    Thanks for the good reads!

    Comment by admin — July 28, 2010 @ 5:53 am

  3. Added Paul’s book to my “to buy” list. Thanks.

    What about “Neverwhere” by Neil Gaiman?

    Comment by Buck Swindle — July 30, 2010 @ 5:33 am

  4. Forgot “No Country for Old Men” too.

    Comment by Buck Swindle — July 30, 2010 @ 5:35 am

  5. Good calls, Buck. I’ve read Gaiman and McCarthy but not those titles and completely forgot about them. Apparently, the web sites I found neglected to include them, as well. Two more for the reading pile.

    Comment by admin — July 30, 2010 @ 5:55 am

  6. 1transaction

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