I seem to have spent a fair amount of time trying to resolve a dilemma. It’s all the fault of the Classics Club that I joined this week. New members have to identify 50 novels/books considered to be classics that we want to read over the course of the next few years. It proved rather more difficult than I imagined.
It was much harder to think of 50 titles than I had imagined. For one thing, what does the label ‘classic’ really mean? Revered? Old? Learned? I gave up trying to answer that one. Then there was the question of whether to go for books I had never read before or to include a smattering of some tried and trusted friends. In the end I included some titles I had read once before (though many decades ago) but never really appreciated or understood – so Camus and Virginia Woolf got included.
Now I’ve finished, I keep thinking of things that maybe I should have included so I suspect this list is going to change over the five years I’ve set myself to read these examples of the great and the good in literature.
But those people over at Classics Club have a dastardly trick up their sleeves – the August mem challenges all members to name their favourite classic of all time. I agonised over this – kept moving titles up and down in order of preference. But I never could settle on just one – so I somewhat cheated and went for my own version of the Olympic medals. My selection of gold, silver and bronze are revealed in my blog posting and my list is at http://bookertalk.com/classics-club-list/
What have I missed out that you think really should be in my list?
What would your list look like?