Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Classics Club

Hosted by Jillian of A Room of One's Own, The Classics Club offers a chance for those who love to read classics from all centuries challenge themselves, set some goals and find a group of people of a like mind. I've loved reading the classics since I was a teenager (a very long time ago) but there are so many books and authors I have yet to discover. There are also a lot of those classics I would love to read again. This club is going to give me the incentive to do both of those things.

Members of the club will make a list of at least 50 classics they plan to read then set their own length of time to complete reading the books. My list is actually 60 titles because I've included some short stories and some children's books so I thought I should push myself beyond the required 50. My goal is to read through the list in five years with a start date of March 15, 2012 through March 15, 2017. I'll be honest, a little part of me does wonder if I'll even still be blogging in five years...if anyone will still be blogging in five years, in which case there won't be anyone to hold me accountable. I'm shooting to average one classic a month. Here is my list:

Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
The Portrait of A Lady by Henry James
The Warden by Anthony Trollope
Moll Flanders by Daniel DeFoe
Frankenstein by Mary W. Shelley
The Time Machine by H. G. Wells
The Metamorphosis by Franz Kafka
My Antonia by Willa Cather
A Lost Lady by Willa Cather
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
Adam Bede by George Eliot
Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen
Persuasion by Jane Austen
The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas
Candide by Voltaire
Miss Bishop by Bess Street Aldrich
Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens
Daisy Miller by Henry James
Pere Goriot by Honore de Balzac
The Mill On The Floss by George Eliot
The History of Tom Jones, A Foundling by Henry Fielding
Shirley by Charlotte Bronte
Cranford by Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell
A Room With A View by E. M. Forster

Children's  and Young Adult Books:
Daddy Longlegs by Jean Webster
Mr. Popper's Penguins by Richard and Margaret Atwater
Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm by Kate Douglas Wiggin
The Diary of A Young Girl by Anne Frank
Where The Redfern Grows by Wilson Rawls
The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane
The Yearling by Marjorie Kinnan Rawls
Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson
A Little Princess by Frances Hodgeson Burnett
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgeson Burnett
Little Men  by Louisa May Alcott
The Railway Children by Edith Nesbit

Short Stories:
Rocking-Horse Winner by D. H. Lawrence
The Fall of the House of Usher by Edgar Allen Poe
The Jumping Frog of Calavaras County by Mark Twain
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

Hamlet by William Shakespeare
Henry IV by William Shakespeare
A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen
The Importance of Being Earnest and Other Plays by Oscar Wilde

Modern Classics:
The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway
The Sound & The Fury by William Faulkner
A Moveable Feast by Ernest Hemingway
East of Eden by John Steinbeck
Decline and Fall by Evelyn Waugh
Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh
Cannery Row by John Steinbeck
Frenchman's Creek by Daphne du Maurier

As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner
Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse
Catcher In The Rye by John Salinger
All Quiet On The Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque
Possession by A. S. Byatt
This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald
In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

In addition to reading these books, I'm going to try to watch as many of the adaptations as I can find! I'll be starting off with The Sun Also Rises, my book club happens to be reading this one for March.


  1. I had never read Mark Twain and got assigned that frog story you picked for a recent lit class. And I hated it, and I didn't like Twain, and I wanted to throw it into a wall, so I read it again and again until I "got" it. Then I read a bio on Mark Twain. And now I really, really like him and kind of like that story. But I can't imagine how that story made him famous. Apparently America loved it! I'm kind of curious what you'll think on that one. :)

    I'm excited to read A Portrait of a Lady too. And you know, I was really bummed I couldn't fit Henry IV on my list. The Shakespeare histories are the ones I'm most curious about.

    I'm guessing you're already familiar with Austen and the Brontes. Those are my favorites. :D

    Cheers, and welcome! :D

  2. I just picked up three titles at the library, all short in size, all audio: Of Mice and Men, The Great Gatzby, and Hemingway's The Garden of Eden. I'm hoping to listen to these over the summer.

    Enjoy your challenge! :)

  3. Hi Lisa,
    Your list has great variety! I love the short stories you chose...I want to read them, too :-)
    Your blog is great - I'm now a follower!

  4. This seems like such a grand idea, but just knowing that I have imposed a goal on myself would make me all uncomfortable. I need to read more classics, that's for sure, but I am not sure about signing up. Perhaps I will just have to unofficially join, that way I wouldn't feel too bad if I failed!

  5. Great goals. I have a few of those on my list as well. Look forward to your reviews. I've been in a fiction funk lately. I've been devouring non-fiction...so I just can't make goals with books it seems. I did just pick up In Cold Blood by Capote. I'd love reading that one along with you sometime! Good luck!!!!

  6. Oh so that is the Classics club...I should learn how to read better. I could probably come up with 50 no problem. Good luck and I already see some of your selections will be on my list too :)

  7. I've bookmarked Jillian's post and really want to write up a list but her directions were SO long--did I mention how easily overwhelmed I am these days? ;) I love how you have your list broken out into different categories! I really need to read Frances Hodgeson Burnett.

  8. Best of luck with your list. You have a some fantastic books ahead of you. East of Eden is amazing and I quite liked Cannery Row. Daddy Long Legs is pretty fun and a quick read. I too love watching adaptations after I finish a book. I did that this past year with Oliver Twist and Brideshead Revisited. It's fun to see it come to life, even if sometimes it doesn't do the subject matter justice.