Top Ten Tuesday – Classics You Won’t Believe I Haven’t Read (Yet!)

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Classic Books You Won’t Believe I Haven’t Read (Yet!)

I can’t wait to read all the posts for this week’s topic! Anyone who follows me will know that I struggle with fitting the classics in. I always say I want to read them, and then a new book comes out, and they get pushed down my TBR again. In an attempt to overcome this I’ve joined the Classics Club, and I’ve chosen 55 classic books so far for my challenge. Please feel free to offer me recommendations and advise on which ones I should bump up my list!

TTT Classic Covers 1-4

Mr Bennett Quote1. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen: How I have never read this is beyond me. It must be one of the most well-known classics of all time, and possibly the one that has been adapted the most times too (the BBC adaptation being a personal favourite). Yes, that’s right, I watched it before I read the book. My sister made me. I do own the Collins Classic and I did start it a few months ago, but I put it down again. I have to say that watching it first did help when it came to understanding the language and pace.

2. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury: Considering how much I love dystopian novels, you’d really think I’d have gotten round to this one sooner. Set in a world where books are forbidden as they are believed to be the source of unhappiness (what?!?), the book focuses on the media, drugs and conformity.

3. 1984 by George Orwell: Speaking of classic dystopians… 1984 (which was written in 1948) is about a “negative utopia”. I remember touching on this in school when doing a creative writing piece about 12 years ago, where we had to imagine the future and the kind of world we’d live in. I’d LOVE to find that essay, I specifically remember writing that instead of carrying around huge textbooks, students would have them all on a tablet-device that they would use in lessons, where they would “log-on” to the learning materials. The iPad wasn’t even invented then. Smartphones weren’t even out then. I was clearly an early genius.

4. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens: When I was putting my Classics Club list together, I conferred with my sister (she’s coming up a lot today) and her outcry of, “Pip!! You don’t know who Pip is?!”, was enough to make me interested in this novel.

TTT Classics Covers 5-7

5. The Great Gatsby by F Scott Fitzgerald: You’d think what with the movie adaptation avec Leo DiCaprio I’d have gotten around to this one already, but nope. Not yet. I purchased the collected works of F Scott Fitzgerald for a bargain price, and was very excited to own this novel. Then it arrived. All 1,456 pages of it. Lesson #1 when on-line shopping: always read the description. I want to read it before watching the movie, so I’ll use that as motivation.

6. The Picture of Dorian Grey by Oscar Wilde: I’ve seen The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, so I get the premise behind this story, and it does sound intriguing. The real shock in why I haven’t read this yet is, uh hello, Oscar Wilde is Irish. I’m Irish. I should probably be reading more by this amazingly well-known author!

7, 8 & 9. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest by Ken Kasey and The Catcher in the Rye by J D Salinger: I’ve no idea why I put these together. They seem to be the books we study for GCSE/A Level English Literature here and they are always mentioned together in conversations, most likely because they have all been on our country’s curriculum for 30 odd years. I didn’t study any of these when I did my exams, it was luck of the draw which class you were in as each one studied a different text and I got Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, so at least I can say I have read that one.

TTT Classics Covers 8-10

10. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath: I’m including a “modern” classic. Originally published in 1978 (I believe), this seems to be the go-to text on feminism, psychology and mental health, all of which interest me, so again – I’ve no idea why I haven’t read this yet.

All of these books are on my To Be Read list for the Classics Club challenge, and I’ve no doubt I will get to them at some point. In the meantime, what are your favourite classics? Which do you highly recommend and which do you avoid like the plague??

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About Rachel

Avid reader & book blogger. Lover of Business. A fan of drinks & dancing. Ever optimistic. Feminist.

49 Responses

  1. Personally, I hated The Great Gatsby… I didn’t care about anyone and just didn’t get it. I wanted to love it but it just didn’t work out for me! TKAM and OFOTCN are wonderful books.

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  2. I so wanted to love The Great Gatsby but I didn’t. To Kill a Mockingbird and One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest are wonderful though! I can’t believe you’ve not read P&P yet!

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  3. Elen @ A World of Reviews

    I need to read Great Expectations. I’ve seen the BBC version and it was really good, so I have to get around to reading it. I still need to read P&P too, because I feel like one of the only people who haven’t. 🙂

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      1. Elen @ A World of Reviews

        Definitely. It was so much easier to read North and South because I already kind of knew what was going on.

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      1. Of course we can chat about them! Although, I might have to refresh my memory on a few of them – it’s been awhile. I’ve set my own Classics Challenge, but I didn’t link up to the Classics Club, because I don’t want to blog reviews of ALL of them. 😉

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  4. Don’t be ashamed! I haven’t read many of these either (including 1984, Fahrenheit 451, and basically all the Americans). There’s a difference between having read the classics and knowing what they’re about. We should get started on our reading!

    My TTT

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  5. I love Pride and Prejudice! I’m biased, but I’d try to persuade you to give it another shot 😀 I haven’t read any of the others on your list, you’re definitely not alone with not reading many classics. The new, sparkly books usually get my attention first. I love the Classics Club idea, best of luck with getting all the books on your list read! I really want to read 1984, I love dystopians as well and I can’t believe I haven’t read it yet.

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  6. Great list!! Don’t worry too much about The Great Gatsby. The actual length of it is more novella/shorter novel length (though I’m sure in the collection it will hard to adjust to). There’s a few on there I haven’t read but need to as well.

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  7. I haven’t read One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest or Great Expectations (recognize the Pip referrence but have no context…must read) yet, but all the others I have and highly recommend them, especially P&P.

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  8. You know, I hear a lot of good things about the Bell Jar. And you would think that would get me to at least go out and get it – nope! I think that’s been on my TBR for 3 years now, and I still don’t have it.

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  9. I have read and loved: 1984, The Picture of Dorian Gray, One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest, The Catcher in the Rye (though that last one took two attempts–i hated it first time i tried to read it, adored it the second time).

    I have read and did not like so much: The Bell Jar. It’s okay, just not as great as it’s made out to be.

    I want to read: Fahrenheit 451 and To Kill A Mocking Bird.

    I looooove classics. I joined the classics club, but not because i needed the encouragement, just because fun 😀

    Right, i should go and write my own post for this…

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      1. The Bell Jar is a decent book, but it is one person’s story of struggling with mental health issues. It is not the be all and end all. Though, worse was Girl, Interrupted. The author of that wanted both the ‘allure’ of having mental health issues, and the vindication of telling the people who diagnosed her that she didn’t have mental health issues. That is a book i do not recommend. One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest is my A+ recommended classic and mental health novel.

        I finally did my classics TTT!

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  10. My fave on this list is To Kill A Mockingbird. If you have to read one on this list, I suggest that! Of the others I have also read One Flew Over The Cuckoo’s Nest and Pride & Prejudice. I felt so-so about the former and kinda meh about the latter.
    I’m also really bad at reading classics. I do still want to read 1984 and The Picture of Dorian Grey, though.

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  11. Man, I never see your posts in the tag system. So weird and lame :I

    Anyways, if your guilty pleasure involves dystopian content, then look no farther to the trifecta classics (in my limited views of classic novels in this genre, at least) of: Orwell, Bradbury, and Huxley. And have no fear, I am definitely not one to gravitate towards classics if it weren’t for high school pushing them onto me haha.

    Hopefully you can enjoy Catcher for the both of us because that shit was truly agonizing. Just one opinion, though, I feel like mostly everyone else in the world likes it though. -shrug-.

    Cheers,
    joey via. thoughts and afterthoughts

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      1. Tagging, like, the thing where in the default Reader home page you can search up tags (i.e. top ten tuesday) and find all related posts. Maybe you do tag your posts but it’s just weird that I never see it when I search it haha.

        Of the three authors, I still need to pick up Orwell’s animal farm….perhaps if that interests you more, then I’m sure that could be a good sub for 1984!

        At least you’d give classics in general a go. I think if you gave me Tolstoy of Bronte, I’d shoot myself (maybe) before I attempt to read it. I guess I just don’t find interest in many of them!

        Cheers,
        Joey

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