“When you reread a classic, you do not see more in the book than you did before; you see more in you than there was before.”
Until I add more books to my summer reading list (I hope to buy a few new books today, so stay tuned) I'm going to continue our list and discussion of classics. So whether you're rereading some of these books or looking at them for the first time, here are five more classics I think you should read!
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain - I'm sure many of you have already read this one, but if not, please read it! I read some excerpts from the book in high school, but believe it or not the first time I read the entire book was this past semester, during my sophomore year of college for an American lit class. As my professor mentioned, Twain is excellent at using dry humor and subtle one liners. The novel follows (who else?) Huckleberry Finn and his friend Jim as they travel down the Mississippi river. Throughout the book, I was rooting for both of them!
A quote from the novel: "You don't know about me without you have read a book by the name of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer; but that ain't no matter. That book was made by Mr. Mark Twain, and he told the truth, mainly. There was things which he stretched, but mainly he told the truth."
A Passage to India by E.M. Forster - This book was a summer reading book for my senior year of high school. It is set during the time when the British occupied India and India wanted independence. Like many of the classics, this novel really helps you to understand what it was like at that time and how petty people can be.
A quote from the novel: "It is easy to sympathize at a distance. I value more the kind word that is spoken close to my ear."
Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen - As you can see from this and the last post, I'm a big Austen fan. As Jennifer, http://dreamreads.blogspot.com/, mentioned Austen is great at capturing human nature. I read this book this fall in my British literature course. As my professor informed us, this novel is meant to be a parody of the Gothic novel. Seventeen-year-old Catherine Morland goes to visit family friends and there she meets the comical character of Isabella, Isabella's brother, Henry Tilney, and his sister. She falls in love with Henry and when she goes to visit Henry's estate she expects it to be just like the estates in her Gothic novels, but, in a humorous sense, it is different than her expectations. When Henry discovers something about Catherine, he must choose between his father's snooty opinions and his love for Catherine.
A quote from the novel: "To look almost pretty, is an acquisition of higher delight to a girl who has been looking plain the first fifteen years of her life, than a beauty from her cradle can ever receive."
The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger - This book can go either way. People either love this book and Holden Caulfield or they hate the book and Holden Caulfield. I fall into the former half of readers. I first read this book during my sophomore year of high school. Although you later find out that Holden is telling the story as a flashback to a psychologist in what we can assume to be a mental hospital or something similar, I still find Holden and his comments on human nature to be hilarious.
A quote from the novel: "All morons hate it when you call them a moron."
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee - I first received a copy of this book from my grandma, who loved this novel. I then had to read it in high school. The book takes place during the Great Depression in Alabama and is told from the perspective of a six-year-old: Scout Finch. This novel is special and if you haven't read it yet, please add it to your list!
A quote from the novel: "When a child asks you something, answer him, for goodness' sake. But don't make a production of it. Children are children, but they can spot an evasion quicker than adults, and evasion simply muddles 'em."
What are some of your favorite classics? I'd love to hear from you so I can add them to my list :]
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Stay tuned for five more great classics.