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Asking someone with a degree in English this question is bad. Mainly because I have to go through the mass inventory of books I have read both for fun and for my degree and compare and contrast to come up with what I consider to be the "best."
That being said, I will start with the three worst I have ever read:
1) War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy. I checked this book out from the library when I was 13. Yeah, I had that kind of a reading level. I read half of it. But it was painful. I've since read other works by Leo Tolstoy, so I know it's not his writing style that I dislike, it was the length and subject matter. It bored me to tears, which I understood was the point, but still. This book made me think, "Sheesh, no wonder Russians are typecast as alcoholics."
2) John Smith's Journals. Not actually a book, but rather a piece I read in my compilation from American Lit class. It was by far the worst thing I read that term. If you know the story of Pocahontas, try thinking again. The perspective Disney spins you is most clearly from this man's point of view. He clearly thinks that the natives of Pocahontas' tribe thought he was a god, but forgets that they do indeed, try killing him later. Last I checked, religions don't try to kill gods. It's usually self-defeating. I really disliked reading it because the man was full of himself. It made me wish that we had some sort of an encounter written down by Pocahontas just so I could hear someone actually say, "Yeah, this white guy is full of it."
3) I'm blocking the name and title of the last book, but it was a murder mystery that was a new release about four or five years ago. I couldn't read the book because of how many grammatical errors and wholes the story contained. Seriously, the manuscript must have landed on the Publisher's desk. Publisher looked at the first and last pages, and then sent it to press without edits. I was beyond angry when I sat down to read the book, because it was horribly unpolished and lacked imagination that some stories evolve into when you sit down and rework scenes and flesh it out beyond the first write. It was highly unprofessional and I can't imagine that the writer was happy that she presented herself like an imbecile. My mom read the book all the way through because she could overlook the poor grammer and plot drop offs that went no where.
Now for the Besties:
1) Jan Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. One of my favorite all time novels. It's a love story, but it works to get there. Jane is not easy to love but then again, neither is Mr. Rochester. And his wife is batty. The characters aren't perfect and it isn't mushy, but rather, messy and both characters agonize over their feelings. Which is a trait I like about Bronte's novels. I feel she actually works to convey the inner turmoil we struggle through when experiencing deep emotions. The ending is happy, but when I close the book, I got the feeling that Jane and Mr. Rochester will still have to work to make it so.
2) The Once and Future King by T.H. White. I love Arthurian legend. This book was used as "dessert" for my AP English class. I have since gotten myself a copy so I can read it over and over again. Funny part is, everyone loves Arthur and I really wish I knew more about Lady Gwen and Morganna. I've done research since them, but oh to have a time machine!
3) The Giver by Lois Lowry. One of the best stories of young adult fiction. It really makes you think about what the world were like if we stopped having choices and everything, including our families and our work was assigned to us. I've actually used this story to analyze plot creation for my Science Fiction class.