Monthly Meme: What’s Your Favorite Classic Book? Why?

(Starting in August 2021 (as well as August 2015 through December 2016 and again in early 2018), we decided to start recycling some of the questions from the club’s first three years, to give those who weren’t members yet an opportunity to answer live, & to allow those who have already answered — or who lacked the time or inclination to answer originally — a space to revisit. We will also be posting a couple of the suggested questions offered by club members, since we were lucky enough to get a few after we retired this meme. (Thanks for those!) We hope this is fun and adds to the sense that we are, in a way, reading together. (With minimal effort on the part of your moderators, who are strapped! 🙂)

Without further ado…

What is your favorite classic book? Why?

Reply in the comments below or answer in full on your blog and share a link in the comments.

13 thoughts on “Monthly Meme: What’s Your Favorite Classic Book? Why?

  1. It’s a toss-up for me between The Metamorphosis, Eugene Onegin, and The Painted Veil… I know, three’s cheating. 😆

    The Metamorphosis – Each time I read it I get something new. I feel like it’s a timeless critique of modernity and the way humans treat each other.

    Eugene Onegin – The perfect storm… 😆 I love Tatyana so much.

    The Painted Veil – The romance and tragedy really speak to me in this one.

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  2. Jane Eyre has always been a favorite. But Edith Wharton is a new favorite. I loved The Age of Innocence but recently read The Custom of the Country which is not as well known and was completely blown away. A new favorite classic for sure!

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  3. This is so very hard. For a long time, my favorite classic has been The Count of Monte Cristo. People who have never read it just now a sliver of the actual story; young man falsely imprisoned, gets out, finds a treasure, seeks revenge. But it’s so much more than that! The way the book is written never ceases to amaze. Nothing that is said or that happens in the book is wasted. It’s all part of the story, and it all accumulates. I think Edmond is a great character study, and the topic of revenge and justice is always interesting.

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  4. I’m torn between Jane Eyre which is my lifetime favourite book and Middlemarch which was my first Classics Club read in 2107 but is so rich, I can see myself going back to it time and again and finding something different. And the ending is perfect with George Eliot’s plea for the quiet hero’s that so many women are. . .

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  5. I shall go with a favourite from my ancient childhood, the truly weird The Water-Babies by Charles Kingsley which I’ve read multiple times; it’s part literary fairytale, parable, odyssey, quest, and natural history, and could almost be said to be sui generis.

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  6. Just one favourite? I’ve got two, Persuasion by Jane Austen and Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton. I love the delicacy of Persuasion and the gut-wrenching emotions that I feel when I read Ethan Frome.

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  7. Depends on my mood. I have a collection of favorites. For lighter LM Montgomery generally is a favorite author, love her stand-alones, love her series.

    I also reread Shirley by Charlotte Bronte, love, love, love (and I don’t love the other Bronte works).

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  8. Call of the Wild comes to mind. It’s the first adult novel I ever read (at age..nine, ten?) and one I’ve read many times since. Buck is a character I feel strongly with, and something about London’s writing in general just….calls to me, the struggle wilth inner and outer wildness, the need to balance civilization and roughness, sophistication and practicality. I’ve read a lot of London since.

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  9. That’s a hard one, because I have so many favorite classic authors, Austen and Dickens among them, but I am going to pick Middlemarch by George Eliot. It has several compelling yet true-to-life stories, some of them having to do with picking the wrong marital partners. It is so full of detail and has some really sympathetic characters.

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  10. My favourite classic is Bleak House by Charles Dickens. It seems like every time I read it, there is more I notice about it. I know it isn’t a happy book, but it has so many issues that it touches on.

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