Celebrating 8 Years of the Classics Club

Way back when, on the 7th March, 2012 two classics-loving bloggers, Jillian & Heather, wanted to see more people posting about classic literature on the blogosphere, so they came up with the idea for a Classics Club.

Their goal was to, “unite those of us who like to blog about classic literature, as well as to inspire people to make the classics an integral part of life.” They thought about several ideas but finally settled on inviting people to make out a list of (at least 50) classic titles they intend to read and blog about within the next five years.

After a few months, the club grew, and it was decided to create a separate site to house everything related to The Classics Club. And this blog was born! The club moved here in August 2012. 

So far we have all these members who have read a lot.

To keep everything running smoothly, the club needed moderators.

The First Gen moderators Allie, Adam, Melissa and Sarah guided the club through it’s first 6 years here. Since 2018, our Second Gen moderators, Bron, Deb, Kay and Margaret have been at the helm.

However, the Classics Club would be nothing without ALL of you!

To the hundreds of you, who over the past 8 years have been reading and blogging about classic literature from all around the world, and sharing your experiences here, a HUGE thank you from us. Your comments and continued enthusiasm keep these pages fun and vibrant and interesting for everyone.

We now have 23 members on our Wall of Honor, a place were we celebrate those who have completed their first (or second, or even third) Classics Club Lists.

If you have completed your list, or recently reviewed a classic but forgot to send us the link, we hope this post will prompt you to get onto it!

And if you’ve been wondering about whether or not to join the Classics Club, today’s the day! Prepare your list and sign up here.

For the rest of us, it’s time to reflect on all those wonderful books and bloggers that have come into our lives thanks to the Classics Club. If you’d like to share some of your favourite moments with us, please feel free to comment below, or write a post on your blog and link back here when you’re done.

But now it’s time for cake!

l9rC0w

22 thoughts on “Celebrating 8 Years of the Classics Club

  1. Congratulations to 8 years! It is a great achievement. Thank you to all of you who put a lot of efforts to make it work. I am so happy to have you all as friends, to exchange views and to share our love for the classics. On, on to the 9th year!

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  2. Happy Anniversary, and many thanks for the great work! I joined the Club in 2014 and never looked back! My favourite event was the Women’s Classic Literature Event in 2016 – and also the various Classic Spins 🙂

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  3. Since I only joined in 2018, I am very glad that the club persevered and that there is a community there to support this type of reading. I know that I would be less motivated without the spins, etc. Thanks very much.

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  4. My reaction was also “Eight years?? That can’t be.” But it is! And through those eight years the CC has been a real and lasting benefit in my life. Thank you so much for all the lovely people, the excellent Spins, and the ideas for yet more classics to read. (Though I can’t promise that I will EVER tackle Moby-Dick. Y’all are braver than I am.)

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  5. I still lecture people to read Gone with the Wind & Testament of Youth. 😀

    (I saw “all those years ago” in your comment & thought — “Wait what? It was only 2015 I think? And then I realized THAT WAS FIVE YEARS AGO!”)

    That Zora Neale Hurston group read was epic. x

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  6. My favourite and best memories are wrapped up in every single CC spin. I’ve participated in all 22 and basically read all 22 spins (except for the Brothers K, which I lost when we moved house when I was halfway through it.)

    Also loved the Their Eyes Were Watching God readalong hosted by the club. Being introduced to a new-to-me classics is one of the on-going joys of being involved with the CC.

    I loved meeting Melissa (Gen one mod) and her husband when they visited Australia a number years ago (although our youngest booklet was very concerned that we were going out with people we had met online!!)

    But it’s all the bloggers I’ve discovered over the past 8 yrs that have made this so much fun – Fanda and her Zoladdiction.
    Jillian and her love of Gone With the Wind and Testament of Youth.
    Suey, Kami and Jenni who encouraged me to read North and South.
    Nick and his magnificent year-long chapter-a-day readalongs of the past few years.
    O, Ruth, Jean, Joseph, Nancy, Margaret, Karen, Paula, Cleo, Carol, Chris, Laurie and Silvia (just to name a few) for their incredibly diverse knowledge of classics from around the world.
    All my fellow Australian bloggers, some of who are here, but many who are not, who encourage me to read more Aussie classics.
    To all those bloggers who blog no more and probably wont read this, but who started the journey with me, thank you for helping me get started in the classics blogging world.

    Without all the support and fellowship of the past 8 yrs, I may not have had the courage to finally tackle Moby-Dick. My recent #slowreadalong has now bumped MD up to be one of my all-time favourite classic reads.

    And thanks to Silvia & Ruth, I am now embarking on a reread of One Hundred Years of Solitude 🙂
    My classic education continues…

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  7. Thank you Moderators and Readers for keeping this going. I know I wouldn’t have made it a priority to read my Classics Club titles without this incentive. Here’s to many more years and many more people on the Wall of Honor!

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  8. So impressive, Jillian!

    I joined the Classics Club all the way back in 2012, and finished my first 50 3 years later, on 9/1/2015. I initially made a list, and then realized that while I love to make lists, I actually don’t really like to read from them all that much (lol), so I scrapped the list and just made up a definition of “classics” that worked for me (at least 50 years old & a book that I was convinced was a classic of its genre for reasons that only I can explain).

    I learned so much from the process! I learned that I love Trollope, but struggle with Dickens, that George Eliot was amazing and that Middlemarch deserves all of the hype; that I am NOT a fan of F. Scott Fitzgerald, that Edith Wharton was the greatest of all time and that I really love reading classics written by women.

    I revived my classics project with a second 60 – not having learned my lesson at all – although I think I did a better job this time around, and my focus is more on modern classics than the Victorian heavy list from before. And, the Classics Club led me to my greatest love, which is classic books written by women (both modern and not-so-modern), and especially mid-century British women. It inspired a whole new project for me, which I blog about at All the Vintage Ladies.

    You can find my first 50 here and my recap post here.

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  9. Thank you all for being such tremendous hosts for this challenge. Without it I wouldn’t have read half the books on my list – they’d have stayed in my “hope to read” category for a long time. I’m only one away from completion now!!

    Favourite memory? Being very resentful that I was having to leave the plane at the end of a transatlantic flight when I was only 10 pages from the end of Crime and Punishment!

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    1. My Dostoevsky memory is trying to read The Brothers K, poolside on New Years Day in Western Australia, after a rather BIG NYE. It wasn’t very successful!

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  10. Congratulations to all of you!! And thank you so much to all the moderators and tweeters and readers and enthusiasts for carrying the mantle & keeping this club alive.

    I’ve read A TON of classics since I thought up this club (over a hundred). I haven’t journaled them all, & (as those of you who remember me know) I haven’t stayed in one place to share my remarks, but I have been reading, & have been SO INSPIRED by all of you. I continue to read your posts and continue to be inspired.

    Favorite memories? So hard to choose.

    Watching the club grow, and grow, and grow.

    Trying to read Clarissa with Adam and Allie and o and collapsing in combined horror.

    EVERY POST EVER on my favorite novel Gone with the Wind.

    All my different blogs and all my different club lists for I’ve had MANY. (My favorite was probably my “forgotten female writers” club list.)

    My attempt to host a Gone with the Wind group read.

    My attempt to host a Testament of Youth group read.

    o’s remarks on all the Virginia Woolf books.

    o’s remarks on Clarissa.

    Adam’s continued disdain for The Mysteries of Udolpho.

    Everyone’s excitement about Germinal which makes me want to read it.

    The time we group read Their Eyes Were Watching God & all fell in love.

    Reading half of War & Peace.

    Reading half of Anna Karenina.

    Reading half of Moby-Dick.

    Reading half Huckleberry Finn.

    Trying Ulysses & then laughing hysterically and saying, uh, no.

    All my Gone with the Wind lectures. Literally all of them.

    The monthly memes & everyone’s answers.

    Completing all of this:

    1601: Conversation as it was by the Social Fireside in the Time of the Tudors (Twain)
    84, Charing Cross Road
    Aesop’s Fables
    The Age of Innocence
    Agnes Grey
    Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland & Through the Looking-Glass
    The Alpine Path
    Anne of Avonlea
    Anne of Green Gables
    Anne of the Island
    Ariel (Plath)
    Art of Living: The Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness, and Effectiveness (Epictetus)
    As You Like It
    The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
    The Awakening and Selected Stories
    Bartleby, The Scrivener: A Story of Wall-Street
    Behind the Scenes: Or, Thirty Years a Slave, and Four Years in the White House (Keckley)
    The Bell Jar
    Beloved
    Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience
    The Blythes Are Quoted
    By the Shores of Silver Lake
    Caleb’s Story
    The Canterville Ghost
    Cat on a Hot Tin Roof
    Charlotte’s Web
    A Child’s Christmas in Wales
    A Christmas Carol
    Chronicle Of Youth
    Civil War Hospital Sketches (Alcott)
    Common Sense
    Complete Sonnets (Shakespeare)
    The Complete Tales of Beatrix Potter
    The Cone-Gatherers
    The Crucible: A Play in Four Acts
    Daisy Miller: A Study In Two Parts
    The Dark Tide (Brittain)
    David Copperfield
    The Dead (Joyce)
    Death of a Salesman
    The Diary of a Young Girl
    A Doll’s House
    East of Eden
    The Elements of Style
    Ethan Frome
    Eve’s Diary (Twain)
    A Farewell to Arms
    Farmer Boy
    The First Four Years
    Forever Amber
    The Four Loves
    Frankenstein
    The Glass Menagerie
    Go Set a Watchman: A Novel
    Gone with the Wind ❤
    The Great Gatsby
    A Grief Observed
    Half a Lifetime Ago (Gaskell)
    Hamlet
    The Hard-Boiled Virgin (Frances Newman)
    Henry IV, Part 1
    Henry V
    The Hobbit
    The House of Mirth
    The Invisible Man (Wells)
    Jane Eyre
    The Jefferson Bible – The Life and Morals of Jesus of Nazareth
    Jo's Boys
    Journal of a Novel: The "East of Eden" Letters
    A Journal of the Plague Year
    The Journals of Louisa May Alcott
    Kindred
    Lady Chatterley's Lover
    The Land That Time Forgot
    The Left Hand of Darkness
    Legends of the Fall
    Let the Hurricane Roar
    Letters from Father Christmas
    Letters of a Woman Homesteader
    Letters to a Young Poet
    The Life and Adventures of Santa Clause
    Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
    Little House in the Big Woods
    Little House on the Prairie
    Little Men
    A Little Princess
    Little Town on the Prairie
    Little Women ❤
    Long Day's Journey Into Night
    The Long Winter
    The Lord of the Rings
    The Lost World (Doyle)
    Louisa May Alcott's Christmas Treasury
    Love and Freindship
    Lovers' Vows
    Macbeth
    The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg (Twain)
    Man's Search for Meaning
    Manfred: A Dramatic Poem
    Mansfield Park
    Meditations (Marcus Aurelius)
    The Merchant of Venice
    Mere Christianity
    A Midsummer Night's Dream
    A Modest Proposal
    Mrs. Dalloway
    Much Ado About Nothing
    My Heart is Boundless: Writings of Abigail May Alcott, Louisa's Mother
    The Mysteries of Udolpho
    Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
    The Nick Adams Stories
    Night
    The Night Before Christmas
    Northanger Abbey
    Not Without Honour (Brittain)
    Noted Speeches of Abraham Lincoln
    An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge
    Of Mice and Men
    Old Christmas: From the Sketch Book of Washington Irving
    The Old Man and The Sea
    Oliver Twist
    On Fairy-Stories (Tolkien)
    On the Banks of Plum Creek
    Oroonoko
    Othello
    Out of Africa
    Persuasion
    O Pioneers!
    Pippi Longstocking
    The Portrait of a Lady
    Pride and Prejudice
    Prince Caspian
    The Problem of Pain
    Prometheus Unbound: A Lyrical Drama in Four Acts
    The Quiet Little Woman: Tilly's Christmas, Rosa's Tale: Three Enchanting Christmas Stories
    Rainbow Valley
    Rebecca
    The Red Badge of Courage
    Renascence and Other Poems
    Revolutionary Road
    Richard III
    Rilla of Ingleside
    A River Runs Through It, and Other Stories
    Romeo and Juliet
    A Room of One's Own
    The Rover
    Sarah, Plain and Tall
    The Scarlet Letter
    The Screwtape Letters
    The Secret Garden
    The Selected Journals of L.M. Montgomery (1910-1921)
    Selected Letters of Winifred Holtby and Vera Brittain
    Self-Reliance
    Sense and Sensibility
    A Separate Peace
    Shelley: A Defense Of Poetry
    Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe
    Silly Novels by Lady Novelists (George Eliot)
    A Single Man
    Skylark
    The Snows of Kilimanjaro and Other Stories
    The Sound and the Fury
    Stoner
    The Story of an African Farm
    The Story of an Hour (Chopin)
    The Story of My Life (Keller)
    A Streetcar Named Desire
    Sula
    Summer (Wharton)
    Swiss Family Robinson
    The Symposium
    A Tale of Two Cities
    The Taming of the Shrew
    Tarzan of the Apes
    The Tempest
    Tenant of Wildfell Hall
    Testament of Friendship: The Story of Winifred Holtby ❤
    Testament of Youth ❤
    The Picture of Dorian Gray
    The Pilgrim's Progress
    Their Eyes Were Watching God
    These Happy Golden Years
    They Came Like Swallows
    The Time Machine
    To Kill a Mockingbird
    The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus
    Trifles
    Twelfth Night
    Twelve Years a Slave
    Uncle Tom's Cabin
    The Vampyre
    The Velveteen Rabbit
    Verses of a V.A.D. by Vera Brittain
    The Victorian Chaise-longue
    Villette
    A Vindication of the Rights of Woman
    Volcano (Endo)
    The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
    Waiting for the Barbarians
    Walden and Civil Disobedience
    Walking
    The Waste Land
    Woman in the Nineteenth Century
    The Wreck of the Titan: Or, Futility
    A Wrinkle in Time
    A Writer's Diary (Woolf)
    Xingu
    The Yellow Wallpaper
    You Learn by Living: Eleven Keys for a More Fulfilling Life (Eleanor Roosevelt)

    That's 208 titles. 🙂

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    1. A big YES to the Their Eyes Were Watching God readalong – that was amazing.
      And you’re enthusiasm for Gone With the Wind is legendary. I wouldn’t have reread it without your encouragement all those years ago.

      Your list of 208 titles is impressive too 🙂

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      1. I still lecture people to read Gone with the Wind & Testament of Youth. 🙂

        (I saw “all those years ago” in your comment & thought — “Wait what? It was only 2015 I think? And then I realized THAT WAS FIVE YEARS AGO!”)

        That Zora Neale Hurston group read was epic. x

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