About a year ago, I announced my intention to participate in the Back to the Classics Challenge organized by Karen from the Books and Chocolate blog. I learned about this challenge when chatting with Ruth(iella) on Episode 134 of the Reading Envy Podcast. Ruth is an inspiring reader because of how many classics she reads!
There are 12 categories but you get to choose how many you want to
accomplish. I found potential titles for each but my actual goal was 6. Honestly, though, I assumed I would read 12! Because I am an overachieving reader!
Instead I discovered that I really have to struggle to read classics. I read so many books that are brand new or haven't even come out yet that a few books that I think of as "classics" were actually from the 1970s, or goodness, the 1990s. If I was still alive when a book came out, it can't be a classic.
So it looks like I read seven books for this challenge in 2019, and that's with slightly stretching The Blue Castle to be a comic novel. It does have its funny parts but I'm not sure that's the intent. The links below take you to my reviews.
And I did read one additional classic but didn't count it for the challenge since it only duplicated categories I already counted. (So the picture of book covers contains one more than listed below.)
Overall, I gave two books five stars - Gone with the Wind was a surprising pleasure to read, and an even greater pleasure to discuss it in a readalong with the Book Cougars. The other five-star read was the Popul Vuh, because it was so unusual and beautiful.
1. 19th Century Classic. Any classic book originally published between 1800 and 1899.
2. 20th Century Classic.
The Fountain Overflows by Rebecca West
3. Classic by a Woman Author.
Lolly Willowes by Sylvia Townsend Warner
4. Classic in Translation.
5. Classic Comic Novel.
The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery
6. Classic Tragic Novel.
7. Very Long Classic.
Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell
8. Classic Novella. Any work of narrative fiction shorter than 250 pages.
Nothing but the Night by John Williams
9. Classic From the Americas (includes the Caribbean).
The Popul Vuh (new translation by Michael Bazzett)
10. Classic From Africa, Asia, or Oceania (includes Australia).
11. Classic From a Place You've Lived.
12. Classic Play. Any play written or performed at least 50 years ago. Plays are eligible for this category only.
A Doll House by Henrik Ibsen
My contact info is readingenvy at gmail.