Yesterday, I finished my 2015 Back to the Classics challenge, which is hosted by Karen over at Books and Chocolate. Here’s what I’ve read:
1. A 19th-century Classic: The Jew’s Beech Tree, Annette von Droste-Hülshoff
2. A 20th-century Classic: The Country Girls, Edna O’Brien
3. A Classic by a Woman Author: Summer, Edith Wharton
4. A Classic in Translation: Naomi, Junichiro Tanizaki
5. A Very Long Classic Novel: Gone With the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
6. A Classic Novella: Call of the Wild, Jack London
7. A Classic with a Person’s Name in the Title: Dracula, Bram Stoker
8. A Humorous or Satirical Classic: Three Men in a Boat, Jerome K. Jerome
9. A Forgotten Classic: After the Divorce, Grazia Deledda
10. A Nonfiction Classic: West With the Night, Beryl Markham
11. A Classic Children’s Book: Emil and the Detectives, Erich Kästner
12. A Classic Play: The Short Plays of Thornton Wilder
I really enjoyed reading most of these books; I can’t even pick a favorite. The Country Girls brought me to the Ireland of a few decades ago; Call of the Wild transported me to the wilderness of Alaska. West With the Night introduced me to a wild woman in Africa, and Gone With the Wind—well, what can I say?! Thanks to Dracula, I now understand most vampire references. Emil and the Detectives let me travel back to my childhood. And Edith Wharton is Edith Wharton. Period.
I am very happy that Karen is bringing back the challenge for 2016. The categories have changed a bit, and once again, I will try to fill all 12 of them. As an added challenge, and in line with the Women’s Classic Literature event hosted by the Classics Club, I will try to read only female authors. I don’t want to commit to any particular books, but I have some ideas already.
1. A 19th-century Classic: Little Women, Louisa May Alcott
2. A 20th-century Classic: In a Lonely Place, Dorothy B. Hughes
3. A classic by a Woman Author: The Seventh Cross, Anna Seghers
4. A Classic in Translation: I’m thinking Selma Lagerlöff or maybe something French; perfect for the next Women in Translation month.
5. A Classic by a Non-white Author: I have both Dorothy West and Alice Dunbar-Nelson on my classics list.
6. An Adventure Classic: I could read the travel writings or letters of Gertrude Bell, or maybe Dervla Murphy’s Full Tilt: Ireland to India with a Bicycle.
7. A Fantasy, Science Fiction, or Dystopian Classic: It’s definitely time to read Frankenstein.
8. A Classic Detective Novel: Appointment With Death, Agatha Christie
9. A Classic That Includes the Name of a Place in the Title: Assignment in Brittany, Helen MacInnes
10. A Banned or Censored Classic: The Well of Loneliness, Radclyffe Hall, perfect to read during Banned Book Week.
11. Re-read a Classic You Read in High School or College: Wise Blood, Flannery O’Connor
12. A Volume of Classic Short Stories: The only one currently on my shelf is The Awakening and Other Stories, Kate Chopin
Are you participating in this challenge?