I’ve decided to put this neglected blog to good use for the Back to the Classics Challenge 2015 hosted by Karen at Books and Chocolate (link here http://karensbooksandchocolate.blogspot.com/2014/12/announcing-back-to-classics-challenge.html ). I participated in the Back to the Classics Challenge 2014 by linking to my goodreads pages, which worked ok, but the reason I wanted a blog was to be able to take part in/keep track of these types of on-line challenges.
The categories and the books I plan on reading are as follows:
1. A 19th Century Classic -- any book published between 1800 and 1899. – This should be pretty easy, considering all the unread Dickens, Collins and Trollop books that I want to read. I think I will choose Framely Parsonage, the fourth book in the Barchester Chronicles.
2. A 20th Century Classic -- any book published between 1900 and 1965. Just like last year, all books must have been published at least 50 years ago to qualify as a classic. - Here, I have to take advantage of my quest to read all the books on the Modern Library’s “100 best English-language novels of the twentieth century” which I have been working on since 1999 or so and choose one from that list. Only 34 more titles to go! I think I will read either Appointment inSamarra by John O'Hara or Tender Is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald.
3. A Classic by a Woman Author -- This was a tough one to choose because there simply is so much to choose from, but based on Simon at Savidge Reads’ glowing review (http://savidgereads.wordpress.com/2009/12/06/east-lynne-ellen-wood/) I think I will give East Lynne by Ellen Wood a try.
4. A Classic in Translation -- This was also difficult, but I finally decided on Siddhartha by Herman Hesse because (a) I have a copy in English already, (b) it is very short and (c) I think I might try to also read it in the original.
5. A Very Long Classic Novel – I have the doorstop of TheMysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe awaiting me in this category.
6. A Classic Novella -- Here I opted for One Fine Day by Molly Panter-Downes which has been championed by a variety of bloggers, but most important to me, by Simon at Stuck in A Book (http://www.stuck-in-a-book.blogspot.com/2012/03/one-fine-day-mollie-panter-downes.html).
7. A Classic with a Person's Name in the Title -- Since I chose the Radcliffe novel for the chunkster category, I thought I would read either Armandale by Wilkie Collins or Nicholas Nickleby by Charles Dickens for this category.
8. A Humorous or Satirical Classic -- The easiest by far! I will read Lucia’s Progress by E.F. Benson, which is the fourth book published in the Mapp & Lucia series.
9. A Forgotten Classic -- Karen pointed out that Virago or Persephone titles would probably be a good fit here, so I have chosen to read Someone at a Distance by Dorothy Whipple.
10. A Nonfiction Classic -- I think I will try American Notes by Charles Dickens.
11. A Classic Children's Book – I am pretty sure I never read A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett and The Secret Garden is a childhood favorite, so that will probably be the book I read for this category.
12. A Classic Play – Yikes! The hardest category of all! I have some Shakespeare plays on my shelves, but hopefully Lady Lady Windermere's Fan will be more amusing than King Lear, if I can get my hands on a copy.