I know that I said that I wasn’t going to participate in any challenges this year, but I can’t resist joining this one again. I’ve done it several times, with varying levels of success, and I can fill it with books that will double up for my on-going Century of Women and Classics Club 2.0 projects. Usually I easily fill the categories, but I struggle with getting posts up, but I’ve already read and posted to fill 2 of the categories this month alone.
So, the categories & possible books to fill them:
- A 19th century classic: I have several books planned that could fill this spot, but I think I’ll either read The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte (1848) or Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell (1853)
A 20th century classic:The only limitation for this category is that the book must be at least 50 years old. I’m going to check this category off with The Priory by Dorothy Whipple, which was published in 1939. See, already one classic down! A classic by a woman author:I’m going to check this one off, too – I finished my second-to-final Willa Cather novel, My Mortal Enemy, over the weekend, so I just have Shadows on the Rock left. A classic in translation: I’ve read several Maigret mysteries, translated from French, this year – I posted about Maigret and the Reluctant Witness and Maigret and the Killer here. A classic by BIPOC author: Go Tell It On The Mountain by James Baldwin. Mystery/Detective/Crime Classic: A Rage in Harlem by Chester Himes
- Classic Short Story Collection: On the other hand, I rarely read short stories. I have a copy of NYRB’s The New York Stories of Edith Wharton, so maybe I’ll read that one?
- Pre-1800 Classic: I rarely read anything this old because I find pre-19th century lit to be heavy going indeed. I have been considering reading The Monk by Matthew Gregory Lewis (1796) for a number of years; alternatively, The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling by Henry Fielding (1749) is somewhat appealing, but it’s 975 pages long! A Vindication of the Rights of Women by Mary Wollstoncraft was published in 1792, and it’s only 269 pages.
Non-fiction: I read The Testament of Youth for this one.
- Longest on Your TBR: I can’t even begin to imagine which book has been on my TBR the longest, but I do know that I bought Lark Rise to Candleford by Flora Thompson in October, 1997, and I have never read it, so that’s got to be close!
Set in a Place You’d Like to visit: I have always, always, always wanted to go to Kenya on a safari (but not the kind where I shoot things; just to see the animals. Especially elephants), so I am filling this category with Beryl Markham’s West With The Night. Wild Card: I have a whole stack of D.E. Stevenson books that were just released by Dean Street Press, and she’s always delightful. So, one of those – maybe Green Money or The English Air. I settled on Charlotte Fairlie for this one.
So, there we have it! My Back to the Classics project, which is well underway, with categories 2 & 3 already completed!