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Lying About Books: Beware the Classics

Next time someone knowledge-drops 1984 into a conversation, just know that (in addition to being extremely cliche), there's a good chance they haven't actually read the thing. According to The Guilty Secrets Survey (carried out as a tie-in to World Book Day 2009), 65% of people lie about reading books they haven't actually read. The survey also found that (this just in...) we're an impatient breed. 41% of respondents confessed to skipping to the last page to find out what happens before finishing a book. Oh, the horror!

Here's a list of books to be suspicious about (with the percentages of people who have lied about reading them).

1. 1984 by George Orwell (42%)

2. War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy (31%)

3. Ulysses by James Joyce (25%)

4. The Bible (24%)

5. Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert (16%)

6. A Brief History of Time by Stephen Hawking (15%)

7. Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie (14%)

8. In Remembrance of Things Past by Marcel Proust (9%)

9. Dreams from My Father by Barack Obama (6%)

10. The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins (6%)