The Classics Club

Click here see my introductory post on this page.

Here is the list of 75 books and plays I will take on over the next five years, presented in alphabetical order by author.  An asterisk denotes a reread.  My end date will be March 22, 2017.

Before beginning, I was most excited to read Wuthering Heights since I’d heard absolutely brilliant things about it.  I was least looking forward to rereading The Great Gatsby.  It was one of only three required books I did not enjoy reading when I was in high school; if you’re curious, the others are Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis and D.H. Lawrence’s Sons and Lovers.

For some of the authors (including H.G. Wells, Jules Verne, Jane Austen, Henry James, Tennessee Williams, and Henrik Ibsen), I’ve read only one of their major works, and I’m looking to delve a bit more into their writing.

The List

  1. Flatland (Abbott)
  2. Emma (Austen)
  3. Persuasion (Austen)
  4. Sense and Sensibility (Austen)
  5. The Martian Chronicles (Bradbury)
  6. Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell (Brontë, A., Brontë, C., and Brontë, E.)
  7. Agnes Grey (Brontë, A.)
  8. The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (Brontë, A.)
  9. Jane Eyre (Brontë, C.)
  10. The Professor (Brontë, C.)
  11. Shirley (Brontë, C.)
  12. Villette (Brontë, C.)
  13. Wuthering Heights (Brontë, E.)
  14. My Ántonia (Cather)
  15. Heart of Darkness (Conrad)
  16. Great Expectations (Dickens)
  17. The Hound of the Baskervilles (Doyle)
  18. Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes (Doyle)
  19. The Sign of the Four (Doyle)
  20. Frenchman’s Creek (Du Maurier)
  21. Rebecca (Du Maurier)
  22. My Cousin Rachel (Du Maurier)
  23. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald) *
  24. Madame Bovary (Flaubert)
  25. Passage to India (Forster)
  26. Love in the Time of Cholera (Garcia Marquez)
  27. One Hundred Years of Solitude (Garcia Marquez)
  28. The Life of Charlotte Bronte (Gaskell)
  29. North and South (Gaskell)
  30. Mythology (Hamilton)
  31. Catch 22 (Heller)
  32. For Whom the Bells Tolls (Hemingway)
  33. A Moveable Feast (Hemingway)
  34. The Old Man and the Sea (Hemingway)
  35. The Sun Also Rises (Hemingway)
  36. Les Misérables (Hugo)
  37. Hedda Gabler (Ibsen)
  38. The Master Builder (Ibsen)
  39. The Wild Duck (Ibsen)
  40. The Portrait of a Lady (James)
  41. The Turn of the Screw (James)
  42. Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Joyce)
  43. Ulysses (Joyce)
  44. The Phantom of the Opera (Leroux)
  45. The Razor’s Edge (Maugham)
  46. Gone with the Wind (Mitchell) *
  47. The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood (Pyle)
  48. The Catcher in the Rye (Salinger)
  49. Henry IV, Part 1 (Shakespeare)
  50. Henry IV, Part 2 (Shakespeare)
  51. King Lear (Shakespeare)
  52. Love’s Labors Lost (Shakespeare)
  53. Macbeth (Shakespeare) *
  54. Much Ado About Nothing (Shakespeare)
  55. Othello (Shakespeare)
  56. East of Eden (Steinbeck) *
  57. In Dubious Battle (Steinbeck)
  58. Travels with Charley (Steinbeck)
  59. Dracula (Stoker)
  60. The Hobbit (Tolkien) *
  61. The Lord of the Rings (Tolkien) *
  62. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy) (in progress before joining)
  63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
  64. Around the World in Eighty Days (Verne)
  65. A Journey to the Center of the Earth (Verne)
  66. The Aeneid (Virgil)
  67. All the King’s Men (Warren)
  68. The Invisible Man (Wells)
  69. The Island of Dr. Moreau (Wells)
  70. The Time Machine (Wells)
  71. The Age of Innocence (Wharton)
  72. The Importance of Being Earnest (Wilde)
  73. The Picture of Dorian Gray (Wilde)
  74. Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Williams)
  75. The Glass Menagerie (Williams)

Completed: 15/75

Updates

Edit #1 – 8/8/12

Added: Agnes Grey (Brontë, A.), The Tenant of Wildfell Hall (Brontë, A.), The Professor (Brontë, C.), Shirley (Brontë, C.), Villette (Brontë, C.), The Life of Charlotte Brontë (Gaskell), Mythology (Hamilton), and The Razor’s Edge (Maugham)

Comments: As I hinted in my post on Jane Eyre, I’ve become quite interested in the Brontë sisters, so I’ve added the rest of their books, as well as Elizabeth Gaskell’s biography of Charlotte, to my list.  I’ve wanted to read Edith Hamilton’s Mythology for ages, and I figured it counts as a classic.  As for The Razor’s Edge, I’ve seen its name mentioned on a few Classics Club lists, and I would rather like to watch the 1946 film version of it without feeling guilty.  I now have 68 titles on the list as opposed to my original 60 – but I hope to make it an even number before the challenge is over.

Edit #2 – 3/22/13

Added: Flatland (Abbott), The Martian Chronicles (Bradbury), Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell (Brontë, A., Brontë, C., and Brontë, E.), My Ántonia (Cather), Frenchman’s Creek (Du Maurier), Les Misérables (Hugo), Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (Joyce), and The Age of Innocence (Wharton)

Removed: Inherit the Wind (Lawrence and Lee)

Comments: One year in, and I’ve read 11 books and completed 10 of my posts (my thoughts on The Great Gatsby will be coming within the next couple of weeks).  I’m right on track to finish at least 50 titles in 5 years.  I’m happy with my progress, but I decided it was time for another update, so I expanded my list to include 75 titles.  I want to read between 50 and 75 titles for the Club, so from now on, I’ll keep the cap at 75 when I update the list.  I just want to have a greater pool from which to choose my next reads.

Now, about the changes.  They’re a mix of recent acquires and books that have been on my shelf for a while (Flatland, My Ántonia, Frenchman’s Creek, The Age of Innocence), to books I’ve wanted to read for a while (The Martian Chronicles, Les Misérables), to books I recently developed interest in (Poems by Currer, Ellis, and Acton Bell, Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man).  I removed Inherit the Wind because I simply don’t feel like discussing it, although I did read and enjoy it.

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5 thoughts on “The Classics Club

  1. Pingback: I’m Joining the Classics Club! « manymediamusings

  2. What an excellent list! I’m really excited to follow your progress on these titles. I would have said I most anticipate your reaction to Gone With the Wind, but I see it’s a reread, so you must already know it’s an incredible book. 🙂

    Sense & Sensibility is my favorite by Austen so far. (I still need to read Emma and Mansfield Park.) And I love your Shakespeare picks!! Jane Eyre, too. Such a rich list. 🙂

    • Thank you! I first read Gone with the Wind before ever seeing the movie, which I’ve now seen many times, so I’m particularly interested in seeing how my impressions of the movie affect my reread. I’m sure there are several things I forgot about the book, too. Also, I was planning on having Sense and Sensibility be first of the Austen books on the list I read, so I’m very happy to hear that it’s your current favorite.

  3. Great list! I’ve been reading Sherlock Holmes lately and added more to my Classics Club List. It’s been a fun read — I hope you enjoy them!

    • Thanks! I admit that when I first read The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, it took me a while to warm up to them. But as I continued reading the stories – and then read A Study in Scarlet – I grew to really enjoy them. Definitely looking forward to reading more!

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