Teenspiration: 250 books Rory Gilmore mentioned on The Gilmore Girls

Updated Oct 12 2015
Oohh, Gilmore Girls. Photo by jeffmason, used under Creative Commons license.

I love randomly mentioning The Gilmore Girls on Offbeat Mama because I get to find out how many of you are still true and blue, until the very last day on Earth, fans of the series. A few examples: the show was mentioned when we talked about movie moms we love, whether or not network TV is going offbeat, and even in a comment about finding out the sex of your baby. So when I found the Rory Gilmore Reading challenge — a list of 250 books Rory Gilmore mentioned or read on the show — I knew I had found a post for you: my fellow Gilmore Girl fans.

I've copied and pasted part of the list below — quite a few of the books have been discussed on Offbeat Mama already, so I wanted to bring a few new ones into the mix. This would be a stellar reading list for a tween, teen, or for yourself!

The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay

Here's Amazon's summary of Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay:

This brilliant epic novel set in New York and Prague introduces us to two misfit young men who make it big by creating comic-book superheroes. Joe Kavalier, a young artist who has also been trained in the art of Houdiniesque escape, has just smuggled himself out of Nazi-invaded Prague and landed in New York City. His Brooklyn cousin Sammy Clay is looking for a partner to create heroes, stories, and art for the latest novelty to hit America the comic book. Inspired by their own fears and dreams, Kavalier and Clay create the Escapists, The Monitor, and Luna Moth, inspired by the beautiful Rosa Saks, who will become linked by powerful ties to both men.

Bitch: In Praise of Difficult Women

Elizabeth Wurtzel's Bitch: In Praise of Difficult Women makes the list:

Bitch is a brilliant tract on the history of manipulative female behavior. By looking at women who derive their power from their sexuality, Wurtzel offers a trenchant cultural critique of contemporary gender relations. Beginning with Delilah, the first woman to supposedly bring a great man down (latter-day Delilahs include Yoko Ono, Pam Smart, Bess Myerson), Wurtzel finds many biblical counterparts to the men and women in today's headlines.

In five brilliant extended essays, she links the lives of women as demanding and disparate as Amy Fisher, Hillary Clinton, Margaux Hemingway, and Nicole Brown Simpson. Wurtzel gives voice to those women whose lives have been misunderstood, who have been dismissed for their beauty, their madness, their youth.

The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar

Curious about The Kitchen Boy: A Novel of the Last Tsar?

Drawing from decades of work, travel, and research in Russia, Robert Alexander re-creates the tragic, perennially fascinating story of the final days of Nicholas and Alexandra as seen through the eyes of the Romanovs' young kitchen boy, Leonka. Now an ancient Russian immigrant, Leonka claims to be the last living witness to the Romanovs' brutal murders and sets down the dark secrets of his past with the imperial family. Does he hold the key to the many questions surrounding the family's murder? Historically vivid and compelling, The Kitchen Boy is also a touching portrait of a loving family that was in many ways similar, yet so different, from any other.

The Master and Margarita

Mikhail Bulgakov's The Master and Margarita:

Suppressed in the Soviet Union for twenty-six years, Mikhail Bulgakov's masterpiece is an ironic parable of power and its corruption, good and evil, and human frailty and the strength of love. Featuring Satan, accompanied by a retinue that includes the large, fast-talking, vodka drinking black tom cat Behemoth, the beautiful Margarita, her beloved — a distraught writer known only as the Master — Pontius Pilate, and Jesus Christ, The Master and Margarita combines fable, fantasy, political satire, and slapstick comedy into a wildly entertaining and unforgettable tale that is commonly considered one of the greatest novels ever to come out of the Soviet Union.

Mrs. Dalloway

Oooh, Virgina Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway! Such a good read — and I always think of The Hours, a film about how Mrs. Dalloway impacted three different women.

Mrs Dalloway (published on 14 May 1925) is a novel by Virginia Woolf that details a day in the life of Clarissa Dalloway in post-World War I England. Mrs Dalloway continues to be one of Woolf's best-known novels. Created from two short stories, "Mrs Dalloway in Bond Street" and the unfinished "The Prime Minister", the novel's story is of Clarissa's preparations for a party of which she is to be hostess. With the interior perspective of the novel, the story travels forwards and back in time, and in and out of the characters' minds, to construct a complete image of Clarissa's life and of the inter-war social structure.

The Name of the Rose

Umberto Eco's The Name of the Rose:

The Name of the Rose, which sold 50 million copies worldwide, is an experimental medieval whodunit set in a monastic library. In 1327, Brother William of Baskerville arrives to investigate heresy among the monks in an Italian abbey; a series of bizarre murders overshadows the mission. Within the mystery is a tale of books, librarians, patrons, censorship, and the search for truth in a period of tension between the Papacy and the Holy Roman Empire. The book became a hit despite some obscure passages and allusions.

You can read the entire Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge here… let me know if you start it! I might join in.

BONUS POINTS: if someone ever finds out which episodes she mentions each of these in, I'd love to know.

  1. Wow, I've read 56 of them. Not too shabby and it reminded me of books I'd forgotten about! I've got a master list of books to read and it looks like I'll be adding more now.

  2. I love Gilmore Girls! I should do a rewatch sometime, I have all the seasons on DVD after all.

    I read 55 of the books on that list. The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay is one of my favourite books ever, hands down. I wish the list mentioned which episodes the books were mentioned in too! Maybe I'll keep track on that rewatch…

  3. Ok guys…can anyone tell me if the last (7th) season of Gilmore Girls is worth watching? I loved all the other seasons but heard the last was atrocious. Thanks 🙂

    • It isn't that good at all. I've just finished watching 6 seasons again and I'm now putting off watching the 7th. mostly I flick through the 7th as it has its moments but they are few and far between.

      • I liked season 7 ok, but the series definitely suffered from losing its creator. My biggest beef with the series as a whole is that there are no gay characters! Homosexuality is heavily referenced and joked about but there aren't any explicitly LGBTQ characters (not that I can remember anyhow, and I've seen it a LOT).

  4. Thanks for this – it's like those "One-Hundred Books ____ Says Everyone Should Read" lists that get passed around FB. I do so enjoy seeing how many I've read.

  5. 77 and counting! I just added the entire list to my regular reading list. I shall not be defeated Ms. Gilmore! 🙂

  6. I love Gilmore Girls, from beginning to end and even when I rewatch them!

    I will check out this reading challenge…

    And everyone should watch Bunheads, it's amazing and a lot of the same people from Gilmore Girls play in it!

  7. I love that you have a list of these. My daughter loves the Gilmore girls and she is only three she calls it la la because of the little song that plays during some of the episodes.

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