Group Check-In #1 – September 2012

Check-in below!

Tell us about your project — or you! Introduce yourself. (You can introduce yourself more officially here!) Chat.

Tell us what you’ve read, how you’re feeling about your progress, how much you love the classics or the community — any struggles, a favorite read so far. Really, whatever you feel like sharing!

Some people prefer writing an update at their own blog and linking it here in the comments. That’s fine, too.

Please — don’t feel like you are speaking directly to me when you comment, just because I wrote this post. I want this to be a group party. I open the door and invite you in, and then you discuss together.

Feel free to respond to one another in the comments, ask questions, visit each other, tell us you are new to the club, planning to join the club — etc. This is like a meet and greet.

And do not feel ashamed of your progress!! Even if you’ve not finished anything yet. This thread is a conversation — that’s all.

If you’re having trouble with your list and need encouragement, say that! That’s absolutely understandable. We want new classics readers to join us, so there’s nothing wrong with arriving to this thread with all of the newness showing!   

(Please also note the “check-in” feature here is entirely voluntarily, intended for those who like weighing in with others in the group, and having a periodic place to reflect upon goals for the club. For some this feature would feel like an unwanted intrusion. Silent participation in this group is of course welcome!)

Thanks for all of your enthusiasm about this project, clubbers. We’re excited to see us at 221 and counting. 😀

Twitter hashtag for reading check-ins: #ccreadingupdate

New? Introduce yourself to the group on Twitter using hashtag #ccintroductions @ourclassicsclub.


139 thoughts on “Group Check-In #1 – September 2012

  1. I’ve been discovering so many new “classics” that I keep updating my original list (which I admit was thrown together in a few hours). Recently I’ve read a somewhat recent classic, the 1947 Pulitzer Prize winning “All the King’s Men” by Robert Penn Warren. What a great book. I’m reading around outside of the classics as well including mysteries (“The Nine Tailors” by Dorothy L. Sayers) and political fiction (“The Plot Against America” by Philip Roth). I’ve just started “Bleak House” by Charles Dickens which is for a ten-week class and which I have read once before. I use series mysteries like a lemon ice palate cleanser between big books. Sometimes it’s nice not to have to think too hard when you’re reading in bed.


  2. I’m doing well so far, 5 of the 50: The Moonstone, North and South, The Invisible Man, The Phantom of the Opera, and Bridge to Terabithia. I loved North and South! So glad I read it. Bridge to Terabithia was amazing, I cried my eyes out. I put a lot of children’s books on my list because I’m working my way through the Newbery award winners. Phantom of the Opera I read for another challenge, but I can’t say I liked it too much. I do like classic mystery/horror though.


  3. I had the impression I had already posted a comment… something must’ve gone wrong. Anyway!
    So far I’ve read 19 out of the 75 books of the challenge, right now I’m immersed in Baudelaire’s “Flowers of Evil”, rereading it for the 4th or 5th time, in a new edition so I don’t have any ‘bias’ as I read the poems.
    My favourites have been:
    – ‘Tender is the Night’ by Fitzgerald, I liked it even more than ‘The Great Gatsby’.
    – ‘Ninety-Three’ by Victor Hugo, a splendid historical fiction novel about the French Revolution. It’s so thrilling! I think that those troubles times are brilliantly portrayed by Hugo, who is able to convey the significance of that moment, but also what the ‘common’ people had to go through. It’s an overview of almost everything that must’ve happened there. And there’s a lot of action and the dialogues are brilliant (you can really tell Hugo wrote dramas too).
    – Burmese Days by Orwell. I was really surprised by this one. I mean, it has nothing to do, apparently, with the themes in 1984 or Animal Farm, but it actually has and his writing is as clear and precise (and somewhat cruel with his characters) as always. I need to read more books by him!
    – The Grapes of Wrath by Steinbeck. I could’ve never imagined how amazing this book is.

    About my projects, hopes, future, etc. Since I entered the challenge I have modified the list – adding and withdrawing some novels – in order to fit with my tastes or new discoveries. I want this challenge to be a chance to get to know foreign cultures. Most of the books in my list are by English, American, French or Spanish authors (there are some Russians, a couple of Italians, etc). And I want to discover about Asian, African and Australian Literature too! So if you have any suggestions…


    • Where did you find an edition of ’93? I’ve been trying to find it for years – online, scouring through second hand bookshops etc – all good fun in a way, but so far fruitless as far Victor Hugo goes.


      • Well, I’m lucky enough to speak French, so I bought the original version, which is more easier to find 🙂 Anyway, I think you can buy it in Amazon!


  4. I feel like I’m late to the party, but I’ve enjoyed reading the other comments so much that I thought I would add my own. I joined the classics club in August. So far I have finished The Picture of Dorian Gray and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I enjoyed both, but out of the two Dorian Gray is my favorite. Currently I am reading Gone With the Wind and l-o-v-i-n-g it. It’s such a wonderful work, and being a displaced southern girl it makes me smile and feel incredibly homesick at the same time.


  5. I’ve read 8 of my 50 so far (one yet unreviewed – The Hobbit). Loving the club and everything you’re doing here, the featured bloggers and whatnot. I’ve picked up so many more blogs to read that it might slow down my progress!


  6. I have only read one book from my list so far. I am starting on a second book this weekend, Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen. My goal as far as the list is concern is to read two per month or if it is particularly thick, one per month.


  7. Pingback: September Check-In: The Classics Club | A Novel Attachment

  8. I’m really loving The Classics Club and appreciate all that Jillian, Allie, Adam, Sarah, Melissa and Heather do–a big thank you to all of you!

    Here’s what I’ve read, been reading and hope to read towards my classics project…

    Books I’ve read…

    Since joining The Classics Club in August I’ve read two classics from my list of seventy-two: Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Brontë.  Here’s a little something I said about each book:

    I just finished reading my first Jane Austen novel, Sense and Sensibility— and I think I met almost every person I’ve ever known, or have been acquainted with in each of the characters. And of course, I met myself in several of them, too.

    I love Anne Brontë even more after reading this book. I read, that The Tenant of Wildfell Hall is thought to be Anne’s challenge to Emily’s Wuthering Heights…now, it’s time to read what Emily has to say…

     Books I am reading… 

    Now I’m reading, Emily Brontë’s Wuthering Heights with  Unputdownables (I’m loving it) and Robinson Crusoe with Délaissé—I haven’t made much progress with this book—I left Robinson and Xury curing a newly acquired lion skin, and I think that was the end of chapter two—I will finishes it though…eventually.

    And for something different, I’m imbibing in a bit of classic peril with Dracula for the R.I.P. VII event, and I’m listening to a chapter of Moby Dick with the Moby Dick Big Read (thanks to Jillian) each day. I’m enjoying both very much.

    Books I hope to read…

    In November, I will be participating in Jillian’s Tea With Transcendentalists.  For this I plan to read, Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, Walden by Henry David Thoreau, and Louisa May Alcott The Woman Behind Little Women by Harriet Reisen.  I’m looking forward to a warm, cosy and invigorating November with good books, hot tea, and long autumn walks.


  9. I’m soooo loving The Classics Club! I’m actually feeling really slow right now. I don’t have a lot of time to read what with the new semester starting and my full schedule. I’m participating in the Gone with the Wind read-a-long and have only made it to chapter 2!!! Agh! I do NOT like Scarlett O’Hara and frankly do not know how I’m going to get through this book . She’s a complete change from Austen’s sweet Anne Elliot! So far this novel’s only redemptive quality is that it’s a fascinating historical piece and I happen to be studying the Civil War and Reconstruction right now so it’s perfect timing.

    I think I’m going to follow in Jillian’s footsteps and read more than one book at a time from my list! I don’t know why I wasn’t doing that before! It’d be good to get a breath of fresh so to speak and switch around every once in a while!!

    Fall and winter are such perfect reading seasons!! I’m happy 😀


  10. Hi everyone, good to see many of you here!
    I joined the Classics Club in April, and from an initial list of 50 I’m now already at 54 classics I want to read:

    What I’ve read so far (status: 17/54):

    Jane Austen: Lady Susan (little gem) and Emma
    Nellie Bly: Ten days in a mad-house (little gem)
    Truman Capote: Breakfast at Tiffany’s
    A. Conan Doyle: The hound of the Baskervilles
    Charles Dickens: Bleak House
    G. Elliot: The lifted veil
    E.M. Forster: A room with a view
    N. Hawthorne: The Scarlet Letter
    James Joyce: Dubliners
    George Orwell: 1984
    W. Shakespeare: Much ado about nothing
    Sun Tzu: The art of war
    J. Verne: Around the world in 80 days
    Voltaire: Candide (little gem)
    E. Wharton: Ethan Fromme
    Oscar Wilde: The importance of being Earnest

    I’m thrilled to discover little gems (see above for some examples) that I’ve come across because of the Classics Club. I’m also very interested in the reviews from the members (this is really how I keep adding books on my list…)

    I’m fairly organised, so my reading order is already fixed (…), but what I’ll be looking forward is reading Mrs. Dalloway by V. Woolf and To Kill a Mockingbird, by H. Lee. Participating in the Gothic event hosted by Delaisse, I’ll also have a chance to read another two classics I’ve long wanted to read: The mysteries of Udolpho and Rebecca (and Frankenstein, and Wurthering Heights…)

    Yep, the list is bound to get longer…


  11. So far I’ve read 9 of 72.
    The sun also rises – Hemingway
    For whom the bell tolls -Hemingway
    A farewell to arms -Hem
    Save me the Waltz -Zelda Fitzgerald
    Tender is the Night -F. Scott Fitzgerald
    The Handmaid’s Tale -Atwood
    The Bell Jar – Plath (reread)
    Wide Sargasso Sea -Jean Ryhs
    The Remains of the Day -Kazuo Ishiguro

    My favorites TO read have been the Hemingway, if I had to pick one…maybe.. nope sorry can’t pick.
    My favorite after the fact, is Wide Sargasso Sea. It wasn’t quite what I expected but it really stuck with me and I want to reread it.
    The Fitzgerald books were a little disappointing. Zelda’s book was interesting but very different, almost more poetry than prose. And Tender is the night was good, just not as good as Gatsby.
    I only wish I had time to write about these on my blog! Total fail on keeping up with blogging.


  12. I absolutely love this club and the fact it isn’t a challenge. I am actually slower than you, I’ve only read 1/100 so far. But I did start about 20 at the same time, so I guess once I finish those I’ll get ahead a bit more. But I did sort of set these 100 books out to be read over the next 2 years and I will definitely be changing the list over the next two years! I’m also reading ‘Wildfell Hall’ at the moment, on my way now to read your review! 🙂
    Juli @ Universe in Words


  13. These check-ins are a great idea!

    My list can be found here:

    I only joined up about a month ago, so my total so far is 1/50…or is it 3/52??

    The 50th book I added to my list was vaguely a novel by Edith Wharton. I ended up finding a collection of three of her novels: Ethan Frome, Summer, and Bunner Sisters. I loved all three of them and feel like I have a whole new appreciation for Edith Wharton. I’m excited to give some of her other novels another try. As for the rest of the books on my list, I don’t have any set plan. I’ll let my mood determine the next one that I pick up!


  14. Was exploring blogs when I found A Room of My Own, and Jillian had just launched The Classics Club; so I joined. Wow, has it grown!

    My goal is fifty books in five years; eleven are complete:

    My short goal was ten books a year, and so far I am ahead of schedule.

    I am following The Well Educated Mind list along with several other bloggers (Classical Quest, Classic Case of Madness) following the same list. We just started Anna Karenina.

    This works best for me because I like a list with a purpose, such as the one Susan Wise Bauer provides, and it helps to have other bloggers to read along with.

    I love using The Classics Club to read reviews from other bloggers of books I have read. (Jillian, I’m looking forward to reading your Anna Karenina.)


  15. Delighted to see Jilian’s comment that the Classics Club is not a challenge. I probably wouldn’t have joined if it had been because a) I don’t have the time b) I prefer to enjoy the books I read instead of feeling I need to gobble up the pages just to get to a self imposed finishing line. So I’ve been slow to start – am just on my first one Gaskell’s North and South. But I’m looking forward to being inspired with ideas for new novels and authors to explore.


  16. My List:
    I Joined: March 12th, 2012.
    My Progress: 17 of 100
    Books Completed: 17 ( two haven’t been reviewed yet)

    What I’ve read:
    Cold Comfort Farm
    The Count of Monte Cristo
    The Final Problem
    As I Lay Dying
    Bleak House
    The Scarlet Pimpernel
    The Loved One
    Sense & Sensibility
    The Robber Bride
    The Sign of Four
    Lady Susan
    A Streetcar Named Desire
    Rilla of Ingleside
    Return of the Native
    Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters and Seymour an Introduction
    Dirk Gently’s Holistic Detective Agency

    Next Planned Reads from My List:
    I think maybe Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida or Main Street by Sinclair Lewis.


  17. My Progress:

    1/100 books read so far (The Great Gatsby) – I’m slightly behind, but that’s just me, my reading is always all over the place. Some weeks I’ll read lots of books and other weeks none at all…that’s just the beauty of it all.

    Currently reading Gone with the Wind. I’m also taking part in the readalong hosted by Fanda. It’s my first ever one so that’s something that’s keeping me motivated and excited.

    Also taking part in the Moby Dick Big Read which I’m super excited about. I’m going to read along with my Kindle so that I’ve still technically read it…

    I’m not sure about plans after that…I guess I’ll just see what catches my attention next…

    Hope everyone is having fun doing this and reading some great tales 🙂 …


  18. I joined the Club in March, with a list of 51 which I might just have to revise since I want to add a few and replace some. So far, like Jillian I have read only 2, The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison and Chaka, by Thamas Mofolo. My main problem is how to lay hands on some of the books I have listed to read. Here in Ghana, one cannot pay for Amazon books unless through paynet which is not yet operating. But I guess five years is long enough so I am not in a panic.

    I do enjoy reading other posts on Classics, it is so enlightening and informative though it can be tedious for me with my many commitments, my bad eyes, and the not so stable internet connectivity in my country. Apart from the Classics, I am on 2 other challenges and I write some poetry on my blog. I think Jillian, Heather, Allie, Adam, Melissa and Sarah are doing awesomely well managing this Club. Lots of hugs to them and all the Clubbers. 🙂


    • Can you access 16 of my 75 books were available for free. Those are the 16 that I’ll read in the office – DailyLit sends average e-mail sized snippets of the book you choose to your e-mail account on a daily basis.


  19. My List:
    I Joined: March 7th, 2012.
    My Progress: (5 of 50 – 10%)
    Books Completed:
    Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell (6/17/12)
    Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte (6/4/12)
    Germinal by Emile Zola (7/4/12)
    Notre-Dame de Paris by Victor Hugo (5/18/12)
    Sense & Sensibility by Jane Austen (8/9/12)
    Next Planned Reads from My List:
    Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra
    Cannery Row by John Steinbeck
    Favorite Quote:
    “I have not crawled all this time on my belly with my nails in the earth, along the countless passages of the cavern without glimpsing, far ahead of me, at the end of the unlit gallery, a light, a flame, something doubtless the reflection from the dazzling central laboratory where the wise and the patient have taken God by surprise.” (Hugo – Hunchback of Notre-Dame)


  20. First of all: a heartfelt thanks to the entire Classics Club team, you’e created something amazing and it’s running so smoothly 😀
    And O is indeed a reading machine. I’m very much in awe 🙂

    My own progress is really slow. I’ve been adding to my already long list and reading a lot of non-classics as well. But the Club has inspired and motivated me to read more classics. Without you (and Fanda!), I wouldn’t have started on Gone with the Wind 🙂


  21. My progress: 8/75

    What I’ve read:

    Left Hand of Darkness – Ursula K. LeGuin – 4 stars
    Northanger Abbey – Jane Austen – 3 stars
    The Great Gatsby – F. Scott Fitzgerald – 4 stars
    The Yellow Wallpaper – Charlotte Perkins Gilman – 4 stars
    Green Hills of Africa – Ernest Hemingway – 4 stars
    Babbitt – Sinclair Lewis – 4 stars
    The Hobbit – J.R.R. Tolkein – 4 stars
    Moll Flanders – Daniel DeFoe – 3 stars

    Up Next:

    The Illiad – Homer – via DailyLit (starting today)

    I’ve also been reading a series of short stories for an American Short Stories course I’m helping a high school student through. I’m working on a blog post that counts them all as one – and I’ll probably label them as part of classics club, since they’re all classic authors/short stories. That technically ups my list to 76. Maybe I’ll just update my list to include an “Added After the Fact” column.

    Also, it’s been a lot of fun, doing this with all of you. =)


  22. Hello! Here’s mine:


    5/75. The Classics Club Challenge widget at Goodreads tells me that I’m 2 books behind. Hmm.

    What I’ve read:

    Absalom, Absalom! by William Faulkner – 4 stars
    Darkness at Noon by Arthur Koestler – 3 stars
    Frankenstein by Mary Shelley – 4 stars
    Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë – 5 stars
    Noli Me Tángere by José Rizal – 4 stars

    My plans:

    Definitely catch up! Here’s what I have lined up until the end of the year:

    Mysteries by Knut Hamsun – I’ll probably start reading this once I finish what I’m currently reading (The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath).
    Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen – I originally had Emma in my list, but I decided to replace it with this one since it’s our local book club’s October pick.
    Les Miserables by Victor Hugo – I have ordered this from our local book store and I’ll immediately devour it once it arrives. Hopefully it comes in soon.
    Ulysses by James Joyce – I am 29% done. I swear I am going to finish this before the year ends. So help me God.



  23. I joined in June and was able to read 10 books by the end of August. I have been particularly busy since my last CC read. Like others, my list has changed a lot over time. It is still at 50 books, but I have also started an alternative list to add onto the initial 50. I definitely think I will go above 50, but I wanted to make my list ‘small’ because I like to read a lot new books or non classics as well. I also can’t predict how my life will be in five years. I’ve really enjoyed this blog so far though. 🙂 Thanks again for all the hard works, Jillian and mods.


  24. I’ve finished 8 of my list of 68, which I think is decent progress for me. My most recent read was Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca, which I absolutely loved, and I’m about to start the classic play Inherit the Wind by Jerome Lawrence and Robert E. Lee. After that, my plan is to reread The Hobbit and then get back to the Brontës!


  25. I’m full of admiration for the Classics Club – how do you all find time to read AND blog so much?
    I’ve made a disappointing start, I’m afraid, with only one book read – North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell – in my first six weeks. I’m still mulling it over before I write my review.

    I’ve a lot of other reading to do for my local Litfest, so I’m going to read Daphne du Maurier’s ‘My Cousin Rachel’ next. I’m hoping it’ll be enjoyable and not too heavy.


    • @Karen. Don’t worry about lack of progress. I am
      In exactly the same boat with only one book part finished and oddly enough it is the one you’ve read. However I decided that reading a good book is like drinking a good bottle of wine. It’s meant to be savoured not gulped.


  26. May I begin by saying I like it that we can share all of our thoughts in the comments section as a community. In cases like this (check-ins and introductions), I think it helps us all to communicate better with one another. I mean…yesterday, while reading the introductions in the comments I found I met many more classics bloggers than if I were to go blog hopping. That meant also finding it easier to respond and have conversations and then be able to branch out into various blogs while checking them out. I hope what I just said makes sense…. :-/

    Anyway, returning to the topic at hand. So far, I have completed 8/50 books from my list. While my initial goal was to read 50 books in 5 years, I have a feeling I might increase the book number. I’ve already re-done my list twice to maintain the 50 book count, but I have an unofficial list of another 50 odd books that I keep dipping into as and when the mood strikes me. My current ‘official’ list consists of mostly women writers, and light-hearted, heart-warming stories to suit the sentimental mood of my final month of pregnancy.

    Hence, of the 8 books I’ve read for the club so far 3 are from L M Montgomery’s Anne series, one was a humourous piece by Jerome k Jerome, and Heidi. North and South was also light-hearted enough. But Rebecca took the brunt of a slightly negative review from me, not because I didn’t quite like it, but because it lacked the thriller quotient for me, and I probably wasn’t in the right mood for it. One Hundred Years of Solitude (I’ve yet to review it) was strange but I liked it.

    I had one book on my list that I cast aside because I know I just can’t like it. I speak of Wuthering Heights. I decided to join a read-along at Unputdownables, but my third try at this book convinced me I was never going to be able to read it. So yeah….here’s one gal who can claim to have never read WH and not feel too guilty about it. 😀

    What am I reading now? I’m usually a one-book-at-a-time reader. But currently I have three books going — Far from the Madding Crowd (I’m 103 pages in and going slow), The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (an audiobook….I never would have read it otherwise!), and Little Women (a read-along I’m currently hosting at my blog).

    As to what I hope to read after these…I’m looking at John Bunyan’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, Ishiguro’s The Remains of the Day, and the rest of Montgomery’s Anne series. I’d like to be able to finish all of these before the baby comes. But I’d even settle for half of them. 🙂


    • I can’t remember whether I’ve read The Remains of the Day so I probably haven’t :p I did read Never Let Me Go and really enjoy it but it’s not for everyone. The writing is very crisp and cold, a little distant and I can tell some people might not warm up to the characters. They’re not written to be loved. I hope you enjoy Remains 🙂


    • I can’t read Wuthering Heights either. I thought I tried it too young (in my teens) so I tried again in my 30’s – same problem – it just seemed so childish to me – the romance lacked any sense of reality or believability.
      Give me Jane Eyre any time.
      I also have Agnes Grey on my list with fingers crossed.


  27. Six months on from when I signed up in March and I’m really pleased with progress. I’ve read 13 from my list although so far only 9 have posts – the other 4 to come.

    I’m constantly tweaking and adding to my original list of 60 and not worried if it reaches 100 as I think I’ll still manage to accomplish that in 5 years. I love reading the reviews and finding titles I hadn’t thought of.

    My greatest sense of achievement has come from reading a book that for decades I thought I wouldn’t like and discovering I loved it. Yay! Mrs Dalloway! I returned my library copy and bought my own.

    At present I’m still battling my way through Clarissa, about to start The Yellow Wallpaper, and having a break before the October Gothic events start.

    Loving the Classics Club and finding lots of new blogs to explore – my Google reader has exploded.


  28. I’ve read 17/140, which I think is pretty good! 🙂 I just finished Things Fall Apart by Chinua Achebe, which was a re-read for me (but I’d forgotten pretty much everything about it). It’s one of those books that is so famous and important that I have pretty much nothing to say about it–I’d sound like an idiot. But it’s excellent, of course.

    I am really enjoying this club; having a list is helping me focus on reading really good stuff instead of whatever comes my way. And I’m constantly finding new books I’ve never heard of that have to go on my list!

    With the Gothic celebration coming up in a couple of weeks, I’m not sure what I’m going to read next, but I’d like it to be The Mill on the Floss. I have this lovely Penguin English Classics paperback next to my bed, calling me…


  29. I have now posted about 2 of the books on my list.

    I have started both Bleak House (book) and Germinal (ebook), but am constantly being sidetracked by something else. I usually read several books at once – but this week has been a little ridiculous as I’m 3/4 through a children’s book by Colin Thompson, I read an Alan Bennett in one sitting on Tuesday, I started The Dinner by Herman Koch over lunch on Friday and I’m still working my way through Quiet:The Power of Introverts one chapter at a time.

    Plus all the reading I do via this blog – checking out posts and reviews, making comments…adding more books to my list TBR!!

    Happy reading


  30. I’ve read 10 out of 50, which surprised me when I went to tally them up. It helps that I chose books that I knew I’d be reading this year. I’m hosting the Elizabeth Taylor Centenary, celebrating a lesser-known British novelist by reading one of her novels each month.

    I just added Trollope’s The Warden to my list since I’m currently reading it, inspired by a flurry of discussion on LibraryThing. I love finding others who enjoy classics and can get me excited about trying something new. And who knows, maybe I’ll end up reading all of the Chronicles of Barsetshire.


    • I have some Trollope on my list too but have never heard of Elizabeth Taylor (the author that is). What is her most well know/popular title?


      • It’s hard to say, I don’t think she was ever hugely popular. One of her later works, Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont, is a good if sad book and was made into a film. Her favorite book of mine is A View of the Harbour.


    • I was unsuccessful in both my attempts at reading Taylor. I had a very strong reaction to Angel and almost couldn’t finish the book and I tried to read another title but never managed to finish. I might give her another go some day, I usually really enjoy Virago books.


      • Angel isn’t typical of Elizabeth Taylor’s work, so I’d definitely recommend trying another of her books. A Wreath of Roses is my favourite, and I can second Laura’s recommendation of A View of the Harbour.


  31. I’ve finished 15 on my list of 75 so far, and I’m currently reading my 16th, The Small House at Allington by Anthony Trollope (I originally had 15 works by Trollope on the list, but I’ve cut it back to 11. I still have about 40 works of Trollope to read. . . . might be a whole new challenge!). I have a lot of Victorian doorstoppers on the list, but I’m trying to alternate long and short works. I’m also happy to have read some books that have been hanging around the TBR list a long time. I think my favorites so far have been A Bell for Adano by John Hersey; East of Eden by John Steinbeck; and my current read. I’m very excited by my list, which includes a lot of my favorite authors — Edith Wharton, Zola, Trollope, Dickens, Steinbeck, Elizabeth Gaskell, and W. Somerset Maugham.


  32. Well, I haven’t gotten very far as I would have liked too. I am still on my first book, Pat of Silverbush by LM Montgomery. It wasn’t until around page 100 that I felt the book became interesting. I am not even halfway through and hope to be able to read more soon. I am really excited to start reading some of my other books, but if I do this I fear I will not finish them all. Since joining this club, I have looked into other books that I think might be good, which has led me to buy a lot more books. I don’t plan on reading them though until after I have reached my goal for this challenge (around 67 books or so).

    Take Care everyone,


    • I’m currently reading Montgomery’s Anne series. And someone recommended I read her Emily trilogy and try the Pat. I’ll have to see about getting these books because I enjoy her so much! Have you read The Blue Castle by Montgomery? Apparently, it’s the only novel she wrote for adults. It’s beautiful!


      • I have heard of it but have yet to read it. After I finish reading Pat of Silverbush depending on my feelings of it, than I may read the sequel. With the Anne series I found it annoying how later they would refer to Anne & Gilbert as Mrs. and Mr.


  33. (

    I’m pretty much brand new to the community, but I have to say how awesome I think that you all are! I’ve finished my first Classics Club book – The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens. I have two separate lists – one that is 50 books from the 19th century, and one that is 100 books from the 20th century (one for each year). My 50 book list is to be completed on the five year time frame – the other list, I’m not sure.

    In the next month, I plan to read The Woman in White by Collins, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley, both from the 19th century list and The Wonderful Wizard of Oz (1900) from the other list. I also started Les Miserables today, as I am participating in the readalong at Tien’s blurb.

    I suspect that I am quite elderly (ha!) compared to most of the readers here – I turned 46 this year. I just want to thank everyone for being so welcoming! This is one of the neatest communities of readers I’ve had the good luck to find on the internet. So, Jillian, I think that your idea is amazing, and wonderful, and inspired and any other superlative adjective that you care to apply to it. I like the idea that you are providing inspiration, not competition. Because to me, reading is life, and if we treat reading like it is some sort of pitched battle that we need to win, where is the fun in that? Whether it takes three days or three months for me to read Les Mis (it won’t take three days) in the end, I’ve still done something that so few people have accomplished, and I can take pride in the fact that I am just a little bit better read than I was when I started.


  34. I’ve read 12 of my 100. But that’s about expected as I added quite a few books I wanted to finish for challenges that I planned on this year. I’m right on target for 20 books a year as I joined in March and planned the full 5 years.

    I haven’t added any books to my list, but I read a wide variety of novels including other classics that are not on my list, but I might cheekily add to my ‘Classics’ list at some point, but not take one off.


  35. I am planning on reading about 65-70 classics, but I have only read 4 books. The last one I completed was Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland. I am hoping that I can get a few more completed in the next month or two and that by the end of the year i have some of my “big” classics over with, which is one reason I haven’t read as much as I have hoped to by this point.


  36. So far, I have finished 5 out of 50 since I started last month. I absolutely loved Les Miserables and the Kate Chopin short stories I read. (Need to find a complete works, for her). I just finished reading Cold Comfort Farm, and have been procrastinating about blogging about that one. (Maybe I’ll get to it today?) Right now I’m taking a little Classics Club break to read some non-fiction books I have been wanting to get my hands on, like The Creativity Cure by Carrie Barron, as well as some poetry.


    • Oh isn’t Cold Comfort Farm delightful? I’m longing to reread this one one day. I highly recommend the TV adaptation with Kate Beckinsale as Fanny too. You’re reminded me that I have a few of Stella Gibbons’s novels on my to-read list since her works have recently been reprinted by Virago. I read Kate Chopin’s stories a while ago and they stayed with me for a long time too. You’ve already read so many books from your list, well done!


  37. I have so far read 8 off my list (which currently stands at about 80 titles long… I need to stop adding to it!). I am really happy with this, as I knew that I would not have much time to read once school started. I have enjoyed most of the them, but really was not a big fan of some (Oliver Twist comes right to mind – though I refuse to give up on Dickens!). I think I am going to try some audio books while driving to and from school though, so that I can take advantage of that time away from textbooks. I am right now reading The Hobbit, because I wanted to be sure to read it before the movie comes out!


    • I hope you have more luck with Dickens than I, Sarah. I’ve read a few of his novels and while I somewhat liked Bleak House, I’ve always found Dickens to be rather long-winded and his characters to be too one-dimensional though I appreciate the scope of his world. Good luck!


    • Oliver Twist is too sweet isn’t it? I loved it has a teenager, but when I read it again a few years ago I disliked it immensely! And much as I love A Tale of Two Cities, I’d decided to give up on Dickens altogether, when I was finally convinced to add David Copperfield and The Pickwick Papers to my to-read list.

      Is The Hobbit your first time? Would love to read what you think of it! I just might re-read it myself….but not for the sake of the movie. Perhaps after….since I’ve heard there are lots of changes!


          • Oh, I’m getting all caught up in the action parts and the descriptions and love it. Then all the walking and “down time” is a little boring and I’m tempted to skip a little (but I don’t!) I think it all has to do with me not being able to just sit and read it for a good clip, and my frustration at losing all my lovely reading time (though I am very much enjoying school.) I am also reading this and realizing just how much fun it will be tor read again with my son in a couple years!


            • Ah! Yes…not being able to settle comfortably with a book really does skewer the reading experience. I know that one! 😦 And yes! I’m looking forward to being able to read it to my children when they’re old enough. 😀


  38. I’m meant to be cleaning, but I did a little bit and now I’m exhausted so time for a rest and to do this I think!
    You’re not the slowest, I’ve also finished 2 but my list currently stands at 143 :-/ I can’t seem to stop adding things to it!

    So far I’ve finished The Awakening by Kate Chopin and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall by Anne Bronte. I still need to review The Awakening, which was an ok read, but I really fell in love with Tenant. Really really. It put me into a bit of a Bronte obsession from which I’ve yet to emerge (although it has been somewhat dampened by the disappearance of Agnes Grey somewhere in my house while I was half way through it…).

    Aside from Agnes Grey I’ve started a couple of others from my list as well; Robinson Crusoe I started a couple of days ago after some encouragement from previously mentioned reading machine O, and I’ve also started listening to The Marvelous Land of Oz by L. Frank Baum after a lovely person on Readitswapit mentioned that all of the Oz books are in the public domain and so available on free audiobook at Hopefully I’ll manage to finish and review both before baby turns up in 3 weeks or so!

    I’ve been collecting the Swallows & Amazons series by Arthur Ransome for a while so that I don’t have to wait ages between books and I have the first few now so I’ve been carrying Swallows & Amazons around in my bag with me waiting for the right time to start what will be about my fourteenth reading of it!

    I have to say I have a bit of an obsession with this website. It makes it so easy to find other members and I love commenting on people’s lists and reviews. It’s also a great way to find new bloggers (not that I need more blogs to read!),and I just wanted to say I think all the moderators are doing an awesome job! 🙂


    • I can’t remember whether I’ve read Tenant but I’ve been wanting to read more Bronte (loved Wuthering Heights, Jane Eyre was okay and I think that’s all I read) and your comment just added to that.


    • I’m also experiencing a little obsession with this website.

      I’m loving the chats and check-ins – everyone is embracing the whole ‘let’s do this together, but in a way that works best for each of us’ approach.

      My list keeps growing as I read more of the reviews posted by everyone here.


    • I have to say I have a bit of an obsession with this website. It makes it so easy to find other members and I love commenting on people’s lists and reviews. It’s also a great way to find new bloggers (not that I need more blogs to read!),and I just wanted to say I think all the moderators are doing an awesome job — I second all of that! 😀

      I read Agnes Grey and liked it quite well. I’ve been meaning to read The Tenant of Wildfell Hall all year, but haven’t got around to doing so, and I think I won’t get my chance till next year at least.

      And yay about the baby! Mine is also due next month. 😀


    • I’m ful of admiration that you’re going to tackle so many Ransome titles. I read one for a children’s literature course I’m taking and really hated it. I just found it so slow.


  39. I’ve read 2 of my 50, but one of them was Les Miserables, so getting through that chunkster makes me feel pretty accomplished! The other one I read was North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell. I’m hoping to read three more in the next month because they are all spooky reads: Dracula by Bram Stoker, The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins, and The Sign of the Four by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. I haven’t been reading a lot of classics this year because I’ve lately been in the mood for a lot of fantasy, but the last few weeks I am craving classics again, so I might get into reading several classics over the next few months… we’ll see!


    • I’ve been meaning to pick Sherlock Holmes again as my first two attempts were unsuccessful (perhaps A Study in Scarlet simply isn’t Doyle’s strongest work, I’m thinking of starting with another novel perhaps and chronology be damned). Hope you have more luck with The Sign of the Four!
      North and South is a good read, how did you enjoy it?


      • I’ve read the shorter adventures of Sherlock Holmes but no full-length novels so we’ll see how it goes! I enjoyed North and South, although it was different from what I expected with so much labor strike talk. I really loved Elizabeth Gaskell’s writing and the character development. Now I want to read more of her work!


        • I see your point – while I personally really enjoy the social aspect of Gaskell’s works but it isn’t for everyone. Wives and Daughters is also a good novel of hers if you want a recommendation. Cranford is also charming but it’s written vignette-style and reads more like a collection of short stories taking place in one town. It’s up to you what you’d prefer reading 🙂


      • Hello
        My name is Ay and I love classical novels. My best novels are Jane Osten’s ones such as Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, and Becoming Jane. I am found of classical gothic and romance and I wish that you will give more suggestions about such classic themes.


        • Hi there, Ay! Welcome to the gang… 😀

          As for suggestions for Gothic romances I would suggest “Rebecca” by Daphne du Maurier; “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte… You could try “Wuthering Heights” by Emily Bronte….I’m not a fan of the book, but most folk love it and rank it among their favourites. ^_^


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