Based on your enjoyment of The Unbearable Lightness of Being” by Milan Kundera… You're likely* to like:

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  1. The Book of Laughter and Forgetting

    by Milan Kundera
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
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    Readership: Eclectic

    The first section occurs in 1971 and is the story of Mirek, as he explores his memories of Zdena. Knowing that he loved this ugly woman has left a blemish, and he hopes to rectify this by destroying the love letters that he had sent her. While he travels to her home and back, he is followed by two men. Mirek is arrested at his home and sentenced to jail for six years, his son to two years, and ten or so of his friends to terms of from one to six years. Kundera also describes a photograph from 21 … (Wikipedia)

  2. Immortality

    by Milan Kundera
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
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    Readership: Very niche

    Divided into seven parts, Immortality centers on Agnes, her husband Paul and her sister Laura. Part One: the Face establishes these characters. Part Two: Immortality depicts Goethe 's fraught relationship with Bettina , a young woman who aspires to create a place for herself in the pantheon of history by controlling Goethe's legacy after his death. Part Three: Agnes and Laura fight, while focusing on the deteriorating state of Laura's relationship with Bernard Bertrand. Part Four: Homo Sentimentalis chronicles Goethe's afterlife and postmortem friendship with Ernest Hemingway . Part Five: Chance sees Agnes' death, and intersects these fictional events with … (Wikipedia)

  3. Blindness

    by José Saramago
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    Readership: Fairly popular

    Blindness is the story of an unexplained mass epidemic of blindness afflicting nearly everyone in an unnamed city, and the social breakdown that swiftly follows. The novel follows the misfortune of a handful of unnamed characters who are among the first to be stricken with blindness, including an ophthalmologist, several of his patients, and assorted others, who are thrown together by chance. The ophthalmologist's spouse, "the doctor's wife," is inexplicably immune from the blindness. After a lengthy and traumatic quarantine in an asylum, the group bands together in a family-like unit to survive by their wits and by the good … (Wikipedia)

  4. Steppenwolf

    by Hermann Hesse
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    Readership: Somewhat known

    The book is presented as a manuscript written by its protagonist , a middle-aged man named Harry Haller, who leaves it to a chance acquaintance, the nephew of his landlady. The acquaintance adds a short preface of his own and then has the manuscript published. The title of this "real" book-in-the-book is Harry Haller's Records (For Madmen Only) . As the story begins, the hero is beset by reflections on his being ill-suited for the world of everyday, regular people, specifically for frivolous bourgeois society. In his aimless wanderings about the city he encounters a person carrying an advertisement for … (Wikipedia)

  5. Perfume: The Story of a Murderer

    by Patrick Süskind
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    Readership: Popular

    An acclaimed bestseller and international sensation, Patrick Suskind's classic novel provokes a terrifying examination of what happens when one man's indulgence in his greatest passion—his sense of smell—leads to murder. In the slums of eighteenth-century France, the infant Jean-Baptiste Grenouille is born with one sublime gift—an absolute sense of smell. As a boy, he lives to decipher the odors of Paris, and apprentices himself to a prominent perfumer who teaches him the ancient art of mixing precious oils and herbs. But Grenouille's genius is such that he is not satisfied to stop there, and he becomes obsessed with capturing the … (Goodreads)

  6. The House of the Spirits

    by Isabel Allende
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    Readership: Somewhat known

    The story starts with the del Valle family, focusing upon the youngest and the oldest daughters of the family, Clara and Rosa. The youngest daughter, Clara del Valle, has paranormal powers and keeps a detailed diary of her life. Using her powers, Clara predicts an accidental death in the family. Shortly after this, Clara's sister, Rosa the Beautiful, is killed by poison intended for her father who is running for the Senate . Rosa's fiancé, a poor miner named Esteban Trueba, is devastated and attempts to mend his broken heart by devoting his life to restoring his family hacienda , … (Wikipedia)

  7. Laughable Loves

    by Milan Kundera
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
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    Readership: Very niche

    Laughable Loves is a collection of stories that first appeared in print in Prague before 1968, but was then was subsequently banned. The seven stories are all concerned with love, or rather with the complex erotic games and stratagems employed by women and especially men as they try to come to terms with needs and impulses that can start a terrifying train of events. Sexual attraction is shown as a game that often turns sour, an experience that brings with it painful insights and releases uncertainty, panic, vanity and a constant need for reassurance. Thus a young couple on holiday … (Goodreads)

  8. A Farewell to Arms

    by Ernest Hemingway
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    Readership: Fairly popular

    The novel is divided into five sections or 'books'. Frederic Henry is first person narrator of the story. Lieutenant Frederic Henry, an American paramedic , is serving in the Italian Army . The novel begins during the First World War. It is the start of winter when a Cholera epidemic kills thousands of soldiers. Frederic has a brief visit to Gorizia where he meets with other army fellows and the priest. He finds there are two brothels, one for officers and the other for lower rank soldiers. On his return, he shares his experience with his friend, Surgeon Rinaldi, quite … (Wikipedia)

  9. The Name of the Rose

    by Umberto Eco
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    Readership: Fairly popular

    In 1327, Franciscan friar William of Baskerville and Adso of Melk , a Benedictine novice travelling under his protection, arrive at a Benedictine monastery in Northern Italy to attend a theological disputation . This abbey is being used as neutral ground in a dispute between Pope John XXII and the Franciscans, who are suspected of heresy. The monastery is disturbed by the death of Adelmo of Otranto, an illuminator revered for his illustrations. Adelmo was skilled at comical artwork, especially concerning religious matters. William is asked by the monastery's abbot , Abo of Fossanova, to investigate the death: During his … (Wikipedia)

  10. Sophie's World

    by Jostein Gaarder
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
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    Readership: Fairly popular

    Sophie Amundsen is a 14-year-old girl who lives in Lillesand , Norway. The book begins with Sophie receiving two messages in her mailbox and a postcard addressed to Hilde Møller Knag. Afterwards, she receives a packet of papers, part of a course in philosophy . Sophie, without the knowledge of her mother, becomes the student of an old philosopher, Alberto Knox. Alberto teaches her about the history of philosophy . She gets a substantive and understandable review from the Pre-Socratics to Jean-Paul Sartre . In addition to this, Sophie and Alberto receive postcards addressed to a girl named Hilde from … (Wikipedia)

  11. Norwegian Wood

    by Haruki Murakami
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
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    Readership: Popular

    Toru, a quiet and preternaturally serious young college student in Tokyo, is devoted to Naoko, a beautiful and introspective young woman, but their mutual passion is marked by the tragic death of their best friend years before. Toru begins to adapt to campus life and the loneliness and isolation he faces there, but Naoko finds the pressures and responsibilities of life unbearable. As she retreats further into her own world, Toru finds himself reaching out to others and drawn to a fiercely independent and sexually liberated young woman. A magnificent blending of the music, the mood, and the ethos that … (Goodreads)

  12. The Trial

    by Franz Kafka
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    Readership: Fairly popular

    On the morning of his thirtieth birthday, Josef K., the chief cashier of a bank, is unexpectedly arrested by two unidentified agents from an unspecified agency for an unspecified crime. Josef is not imprisoned, however, but left "free" and told to await instructions from the Committee of Affairs. Josef's landlady, Frau Grubach, tries to console Josef about the trial, but insinuates that the procedure may be related to an immoral relationship with his neighbor Fräulein Bürstner. Josef visits Bürstner to vent his worries, and then kisses her. Josef is ordered to appear at the court's address the coming Sunday, without … (Wikipedia)

  13. Heart of Darkness

    by Joseph Conrad
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    Readership: Popular

    Aboard the Nellie , anchored in the River Thames near Gravesend , Charles Marlow tells his fellow sailors how he became captain of a river steamboat for an ivory trading company. As a child, Marlow had been fascinated by "the blank spaces" on maps, particularly by the biggest, which by the time he had grown up was no longer blank but turned into "a place of darkness". Yet there remained a big river, "resembling an immense snake uncoiled, with its head in the sea, its body at rest curving afar over a vast country and its tail lost in the … (Wikipedia)

  14. Chronicle of a Death Foretold

    by Gabriel García Márquez
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    Readership: Somewhat known

    The non-linear story, told by an anonymous narrator, begins with the morning of Santiago Nasar's death. The reader learns that Santiago lives with his mother, Placida Linero; the cook, Victoria Guzman; and the cook's daughter, Divina Flor. Santiago took over the successful family ranch after the death of his father Ibrahim, who was of Arab origin. He returns home in the early morning hours from an all-night celebration of a wedding between a recent newcomer, Bayardo San Roman, and a long-term resident, Angela Vicario. Two hours after the wedding, Angela was dragged back to her mother's home by Bayardo because … (Wikipedia)

  15. A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

    by Dave Eggers
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
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    Readership: Somewhat known

    'When you read his extraordinary memoir you don't laugh, then cry, then laugh again; you somehow experience these emotions all at once.' "Well, this was when Bill was sighing a lot. He had decided that after our parents died he just didn't want any more fighting between what was left of us. He was twenty-four, Beth was twenty-three, I was twenty-one, Toph was eight, and all of us were so tried already, from that winter. So when something would come up, any little thing, some bill to pay or decision to make, he would just sigh, his eyes tired, his … (Goodreads)

  16. Identity

    by Milan Kundera
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟢🟡
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    Readership: Very niche

    There are situations in which we fail for a moment to recognize the person we are with, in which the identity of the other is erased while we simultaneously doubt our own. This also happens with couples--indeed, above all with couples, because lovers fear more than anything else "losing sight" of that loved one. With stunning artfulness in expanding and playing variations on the meaningful moment, Milan Kundera has made this situation--and the vague sense of panic it inspires--the very fabric of his novel. Here brevity goes hand in hand with intensity, and a moment of bewilderment marks the start … (Goodreads)

  17. Slowness

    by Milan Kundera
    Quality: 🟢🟢🟡⚪️
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    Readership: Very niche

    The novel is a meditation on the effects of modernity upon the individual's perception of the world. It is told through a number of plot lines that slowly weave together until they are all united at the end of the book. Each plot shows a different point-of-view into Kundera's concept of the dancer and provides a perspective on modernity, memory and sensuality. By the end of the book, all of these plots have been brought together in a single location and the characters interact, showing how the ideals they represent interact in the world. Kundera even manages to tie the … (Wikipedia)

  18. The Fall

    by Albert Camus
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    Readership: Eclectic

    ,The Fall, ( French : ,La Chute, ) is a philosophical novel by Albert Camus . First published in 1956, it is his last complete work of fiction. Set in Amsterdam , The Fall consists of a series of dramatic monologues by the self-proclaimed "judge-penitent" Jean-Baptiste Clamence, as he reflects upon his life to a stranger. In what amounts to a confession, Clamence tells of his success as a wealthy Parisian defense lawyer who was highly respected by his colleagues. His crisis, and his ultimate "fall" from grace, was meant to invoke, in secular terms, the fall of man from … (Wikipedia)

  19. The New York Trilogy

    by Paul Auster
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    Readership: Eclectic

    A 2006 reissue by Penguin Books is fronted by new pulp magazine -style covers by comic book illustrator Art Spiegelman . The first story, City of Glass , features an author of detective fiction who becomes a private investigator and descends into madness as he becomes embroiled in the investigation of a case. It explores layers of identity and reality, from Paul Auster the writer of the novel to the unnamed "author" who reports the events as reality, to "Paul Auster the writer", a character in the story, to "Paul Auster the detective", who may or may not exist in … (Wikipedia)

  20. If on a Winter's Night a Traveler

    by Italo Calvino
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    Readership: Eclectic

    If on a Winter's Night a Traveler is a marvel of ingenuity, an experimental text that looks longingly back to the great age of narration—"when time no longer seemed stopped and did not yet seem to have exploded." Italo Calvino's novel is in one sense a comedy in which the two protagonists, the Reader and the Other Reader, ultimately end up married, having almost finished If on a Winter's Night a Traveler. In another, it is a tragedy, a reflection on the difficulties of writing and the solitary nature of reading. The Reader buys a fashionable new book, which opens … (Goodreads)