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Is there still a Classics we are reading thread?

(52 Posts)
divinemintthins Wed 11-Jan-17 17:19:31

I have decided to reread some of my favourite Classics, plus have a go at Trollope (never read). I an currently on The Warden.

My list of books to read in the next couple of months, expect it will take me that long tbh is ...

A Passage to India, Agnes Grey, Out of Africa, My cousin Rachel and something Austen or Hardy.

I haven't read any of them for a few years so am looking forward to it, fire, blanket, tea or wine depending on the night smile.

I tend to reread Classics in the cold dark Jan/Feb evenings and then forget about them, anyone else?

MiddlingMum Mon 16-Jan-17 15:38:14

I'm reading Dickens at the moment, but try to read all 14 of Thomas Hardy's most years. Also George Eliot, the Brontes, Zola, etc.I read several Trollope's last year, I really enjoyed them. VS Naipaul (especially A House for Mr Biswas), John Steinbeck (especially The Grapes of Wrath) and Tolstoy (especially Anna Karenina) are fantastic reads.

If you're looking for something different, have a look at Knut Hamsun, a Norwegian writer. His Growth of the Soil is one of my favourite books ever.

I love classic novels, I read far more of them than contemporary ones.

BarchesterFlowers Tue 17-Jan-17 20:47:52

I will look that book up, thank you. Me too, I find classics a complete escape from the world, I rarely feel that about other novels.

I have almost finished The Warden and have enjoyed it, I bought Barchester Towers last week (I buy used, nearly new condition Folios for a fraction of the original cost).

I have got a full old leather bound set of Dickens that belonged to a great Aunt and rarely reread them, perhaps I will read one to see if I am inspired to read them all.

DH thinks I am a bit dull in my choices, year after year, who cares grin.

Bookridden Tue 17-Jan-17 21:20:24

I've just re-read Persuasion after about 20 years. I think it's my favourite Austen novel. Can't believe Anne thought she was past it at 27!

MiddlingMum Tue 17-Jan-17 22:13:20

Yes, classics are often good escapism. I do read contemporary fiction but find a lot of it fairly bland and lacking in substance.

The Folio books sound lovely, as do the inherited Dickenses.

Bookridden I'm not a huge fan of Jane Austen, but sometimes I think I should re-read one just to see if my tastes have changed.

RMC123 Thu 19-Jan-17 19:27:13

Love classics. Reread Rebecca and Wuthering Heights last year. Thinking I might reread The Woman in White and The tenant of wildfell hall.
Have never been a huge Dickens fan but haven't tried for many years. Maybe I should give it a go again. Any recommendations?

RMC123 Thu 19-Jan-17 19:30:01

Oh and love Vanity Fair

MiddlingMum Thu 19-Jan-17 20:51:04

RMC123 I'd suggest Great Expectations as it isn't so long as some of his others, and has a good plot. Or Oliver Twist perhaps.

I haven't read Vanity Fair for about 40 years. Time for a re-read!

RMC123 Thu 19-Jan-17 21:18:28

MiddlingMum thanks I will give it a go. Although my 'to read pile' is already huge!! It's probably 20 years since I read Vanity Fair!
I also remember trying to read Middlemarch whilst being induced with DS1 15 years ago! Put me off for years! Did finally read and love it smile

MiddlingMum Sat 21-Jan-17 19:45:27

RMC123 I've read Middlemarch but it isn't my favourite Elliot. I love The Mill on the Floss, Adam Bede and Silas Marner though. I've never read Daniel Deronda - it sits on my shelf looking hopeful smile

Munchkin1412 Sat 21-Jan-17 19:55:18

Persuasion is the best Jane Austen I think. As I've it older I've started to appreciate it more! I found a Passage to India quite hard going. Not really Classics but I love the historical novels by M M Kaye - addictive reading if you have any interest in Indian history (or even if not!) I'm going to dig out the tenant of wildfell hall now after this thread reminded me - I heard an interview about the Brontes on radio 4 today and made me think I've not read it in years.

I really enjoyed Bleak House too.

RMC123 Sat 21-Jan-17 21:03:24

Always had a soft spot for Mansfield Park as I studied it at A level. Enjoyed Emma too.

Read Mill on the Floss a long time ago, to be honest can't remember a lot about it.

Did anyone see the Bronte Drama that was on the BBC over Xmas? What did people think? Read a really excellent biography of Charlotte Bronte by Claire Harman last year. Interestingly her theory is that Charlotte didn't actually die of TB but extreme morning sickness. Really well researched and a great read

BarchesterFlowers Sun 22-Jan-17 07:19:50

I loved the Bronte Drama RMC. My grandparents lived at Haworth and I spent a lot of time there as a child so I felt very nostalgic! I loved the portrayal of the sisters, Anne quietly writing, level headed and calm (esp. because she has long been my favourite author of the three). Charlotte stealing the limelight and Emily somewhat reluctant. I will probably go to the museum this year after watching the film.

I almost bought the Clare Harman book yesterday in a used bookshop in York but it was hardback and fairly thick, it was raining, we were on our way to the museum and I didn't have a bag!

I am moving on to Barchester Towers today.

Munchkin, I love Indian history, I will add those to my list.

BarchesterFlowers Sun 22-Jan-17 09:01:33

Munchkin, while searching for M M Kaye I have stumbled across the Raj Quartet. Have you read those books?

woman12345 Sun 22-Jan-17 09:55:07

MiddlingMum Daniel Deronda is not brilliantly written but think it was another subject close to Eliot's hear: anti semitism, feminism and the growing zionist movement in late nineteenth century. Just found an old BBC series of it on netflix.
Mill on the Floss is a cracker.
I saw you like Tolstoy. Me too, have you given Turgenev a whirl? 'Fathers and Sons' is great.
Scott Fitzgerald is my comfort reading.

woman12345 Sun 22-Jan-17 09:56:15

Eliot's heart blush

BarchesterFlowers Sun 22-Jan-17 13:54:37

I am not feeling 100% today - change of book choice to My Cousin Rachel, an old friend rather than something previously unread.

We are now going to Haworth in two weeks time, I looked at the webpage and it is closed until the end of January. Reopens 1st Feb. Thought it would be better in the winter before the place is full of tourists, not that I am a tourist or anything these days grin, only 35 miles away so not very far.

RMC123 Sun 22-Jan-17 14:09:13

I went to Haworth years ago, but didn't 'do' the museum/ parsonage. Also want to walk up to 'Top Witherns'. Wuthering Heights remains my favourite.
I really enjoyed the BBC documentary. Thought it was probably very near to the way they lived.

MiddlingMum Sun 22-Jan-17 14:50:05

woman12345 Yes, I've read a few Turgenev, Fathers and Sons, First Love, and one or two more I can't remember off the top of my head. Can you recommend any others? I keep meaning to give Daniel Deronda a go but somehow get sidetracked by other novels/authors. Balzac is an author I haven't read enough of, I intend to remedy that this year.

I haven't read any Scott Fitzgerald since university, I don't think it really resonated with me. Thomas Hardy is often a choice for comfort reading, and some of Elizabeth Gaskell's novels.

BarchesterFlowers Sun 22-Jan-17 14:57:00

We used to play up there RMC and in the beck/at the waterfalls. I haven't been back since 2004 as I lived away. No one lives in Haworth anymore (from my family).

AWaspOnAWindowInAHeatwave Sun 22-Jan-17 14:57:04

God I'm so thick.

I saw the title and assumed it to mean "Mumsnet classics" 😳 not actual Classics.

<<shuffles off thread with head down>>

RMC123 Sun 22-Jan-17 15:02:09

Barchester - how lovely! Determined to do it this year.

woman12345 Sun 22-Jan-17 19:30:40

MiddlingMum On the Eve, by Turgenev was nice. Nice dresses!
I love Hardy too, and there are beautiful films of them!
I don't know any French classics, so there's something good to look forward to on these dark days.
Oh, and Virginia Woolf. I thought she was supposed to be intimidating but she's the most female of female voices. Love Mrs Dalloway, Jacobs Room, Orlando's a bit trippy but a wonderful journey.

woman12345 Sun 22-Jan-17 19:38:29

I must give Trollop another go, and it's definitely a good time to read Persuasion again, perfect book Munchkin1412 I agree.
RMC123 I used to hate Charles Dickens, for some reason with age I like him now. Tale of Two cities is pretty exciting and gripping, set in French Revolution. And I just read Great Expectations this year, really funny really Gothic.

RMC123 Wed 25-Jan-17 21:38:07

Woman12345 Tale of Two Cities is one I have actually read!!

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