I can't believe that it's already been two years since I joined the Classics Club and compiled my list of 72 classics I wanted to read in five years. Last August, I posted my first annual review, in which I was pleased to have finished 13 titles and knocked two Dickens books off my list. This year, I'm pleased that I've stuck with it and continued to read classics at a steady pace of at least one a month. This is a big deal for me, as I'm terrible at sticking to goals in general and reading lists in particular. This is the only time I have ever stuck to a TBR list, so hopefully I'll continue and manage to read all 72 books by the time the five years are up.
Books read this year: 16
Running total: 29/72
Books I read this year (links to my reviews):
Favourite Reread: This second year was a year of new reads, with only Emma and Return of the King being rereads. Of these, Emma is definitely my favourite.
Unexpected Delight: Northanger Abbey. Having already read Pride and Prejudice, Emma and Sense and Sensibility, I had assumed that the best of Austen was already behind me. But I was utterly enchanted by Catherine, and Northanger Abbey is now my favourite Austen.
Book I Am Glad to Have Finished: Definitely Les Miserables. I try to read one 'big'/scary book each year, and spinning Les Mis meant that this was the year that Victor Hugo and I became acquainted. I had high hopes, but was ultimately let down by the meandering story-telling and unnecessary diversions. I'm glad I read it, but it wasn't really for me.
Best Modern Classic: The Painted Veil by W.Somerset Maugham. I loved this story of a woman forced to accompany her husband into a cholera epidemic because of her infidelity. It's full of thoroughly unlikable characters but still somehow manages to be beautiful.
Book I Finally Got Around To: East of Eden. My husband has been nagging me for years to read some more Steinbeck, so I'm relieved that I loved this one. I'm looking forward to The Grapes of Wrath and Cannery Row, both of which are on my list.
Authors I Am Finished With On My List: Louisa May Alcott, Anne Bronte, Emily Bronte, Isak Dinesen, Daphne Du Maurier, Elizabeth Gaskell, F. Scott Fitzgerald, William Golding, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Victor Hugo, Zora Neale Hurston, Aldous Huxley, Henry James, W. Somerset Maugham, Mark Twain and Jules Verne. Of all of these, I'm really looking forward to reading more James and Maugham.
I'm still enjoying reading classics, although I'm finding that my tastes are changing. If I modified my list now, it would be very different from the one I compiled two years ago. But I've decided to stick to my original goals, and save my new ideas for the classics club list, version two, that I'm sure I'll be compiling in three years time.
If you're in the classics club, how are you getting on with your list?