Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Classics Club, Year III

Two years have passed since I declared I was taking the Classics Club challenge, and posted my own list of fifty classics to read.  I've since read 20 classics, which means I am on schedule -- just. Most of that was from my first year, as this past year I've only read 5.3 entries for the list.  My reading plans for the rest of this year should speed up the pace: I'm currently halfway through Dracula and plan on tackling Frankenstein later in October, and a few others are hovering nearby. I have volume II of the Gulag Archipelago at the ready, for instance.

Looking back at the past year, with my paltry handful of books, there's little that can be said:  volume  one of the Gulag Archipelago stands out, but I'm happiest to have gotten Canterbury Tales finished. It was just as intimidating as the Russians!

  1. The Aeneid, Virgil
  2. The Histories, Herodotus
  3. The Conquest of Gaul, Julius Caesar
  4. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, Vol. I, Edward Gibbon
  5. One Thousand and One Nights, trans. Husain Haddawy
  6. The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas
  7. The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Victor Hugo
  8. The Prince, Machiavelli 
  9. The Brothers Karamazov, Fyodor Dostoeyesky
  10. The Swiss Family Robinson, Johann David Wyss
  11. Frankenstein, Mary Shelley
  12. Dracula, Bram Stoker
  13. The Hiding Place, Corrie ten Boom
  14. The Gulag Archipelago, Alexander Solzhenitsyn (Vol I, Vol II, Vol III)
  15. Leo Tolstoy, War and Peace
  16. The Vicar of Wakefield,  Oliver Goldsmith
  17. Oliver Twist, Charles Dickens
  18. Life on the Mississippi, Mark Twain 
  19. The Education of Henry Adams, Henry Adams
  20. The Federalist Papers, various
  21. Down and Out in Paris and London, George Orwell
  22. The Sun Also Rises, Ernest Hemingway
  23. A Farewell to Arms, Ernest Hemingway
  24. The Jungle, Upton Sinclair
  25. Moby-Dick,  Herman Melville
  26. Catch-22, Joseph Heller
  27. The Grapes of Wrath, John Steinbeck
  28. The Moviegoer, Walker Percy
  29. Love Among the Ruins, Walker Percy
  30. Invisible Man,  Ralph Ellison


  1. An impressive list. Just finished a classic today and I have 3 of your list coming up in my next but one batch of 10 books (all 20th century classics). One day I *will* be well read... probably!

  2. This is indeed a very impressive list. Your progress also seems impressive. I loved both Dracula and Frankenstein and I am curious to read your thoughts on them.

  3. Great (and ambitious) list! Reading Dracula for the first time...I'm jealous. I loved it, and it will never be the same since I know all the plot twists now. Moby-Dick, likewise. Most of the others there are still TBRs, though I might read Frankenstein next month, too.

  4. wow... i was about to say... then i realized i've read 14 of them... but they're like waves: they flow into and out of the brain and it's like they never were there... and at this age i understand that many of the things i've learned and thought important, were not from "classics"; just from little phrases in anonymous books that hit me just at the right time... but it's good to be familiar with past intelligence, i guess, even tho the sources are not within recall...

  5. @Cyberkitten: We're all working on it, one book at a time..

    @Brian: So far it's been most interesting!

    @Marian: The format of the novel lends itself well to suspense, since the reader has to put together the narrative from the letters and such. I've been making myself read it only late at night to help with the mood.

    @Mudpuddle: Books like these merit (and need) re-reading, I think.

  6. I look forward to comparing notes on 'Dracula'. I reviewed it on October 07, 2013 if you want to check it out. Using the Classics tab on the right is the easiest way of finding it....

  7. Caesars self promotion is well worth reading. And yes he did come, see & conquer...:)

    1. I started it a few months back but stopped...I'm thinking "ll do a Roman series that it features in. At the time I was also watching HBO's "Rome", and it put me off of Rome for a little bit. Too much viciousness for me!

    2. Read Colleen McCullough's series of historical fiction. It's historical accurate and very very readable...:)


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