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2016 Old & New Classic Challenge > Kathleen's First Challenge Old & New 2016

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message 1: by Kathleen (last edited Dec 28, 2016 06:16AM) (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments After I made my first list I realized they were all male authors, so I thought--let's see if I can come up with a list of all female authors. I had a great time researching these, and can't wait to start reading in January!

Old School
Indiana, George Sand, 1832
Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte, 1847 Finished 8/3/16 *****
Middlemarch, George Eliot, 1872 Finished 3/8/16 *****

New School
The Death of the Heart, Elizabeth Bowen, 1938
The Heart is a Lonely Hunter, Carson McCullers, 1940 Finished 6/26/16 ****
We Have Always Lived in the Castle, Shirley Jackson, 1962 Finished 9/2/16 ****

Wildcards
Flush, Virginia Woolf, 1933 finished 12/26/16 ****
Their Eyes Were Watching God, Zora Neale Hurston, 1937 finished 5/31/16 *****
Wide Sargasso Sea, Jean Rhys, 1966 finished 1/9/16 ****
Play It as It Lays, Joan Didion, 1970 finished 9/8/16 ****
The God of Small Things, Arundhati Roy, 1997, finished 12/2/16 *****
Reading Lolita in Tehran, Azar Nafisi, 2003, finished 2/28/16 ****

Alternates
The Bluest Eye, Toni Morrison, 1970 finished 12/2/16 ****
Obasan, Joy Kogawa, 1981, finished 10/21/16 **


message 2: by Katy, New School Classics (new)

Katy (kathy_h) | 9189 comments Mod
Nice set of books for reading! Welcome to the challenge.


message 3: by Pink (new)

Pink | 6556 comments Wow, amazing looking list. I think I've read half and want to read the other half! Good luck :)


message 4: by Teanka (new)

Teanka | 124 comments Have fun with reading the books from your list! You can also use some of these authors for the women's century challenge!


message 5: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Thank you Kathy and Pink. This challenge is a great idea!

Thanks Teanka--I thought about the women's century challenge, but my book reading eyes are probably bigger than my stomach so to speak. :-) We'll see how I do with this ...


message 6: by Bob, Short Story Classics (new)

Bob | 4781 comments Mod
I hope you enjoy your first Old & New Challenge. You have some excellent selections, or the three I've read my favorite is We Have Always Lived in the Castle. As for Jayne Eyre, I thought the young Jane was great, such spirit. Have fun.


message 7: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Oh boy, it's getting close. I plan to start with Wide Sargasso Sea and Reading Lolita in Tehran.

My thought is to read Wide Sargasso Sea BEFORE Jane Eyre. I know the Jane Eyre story from multiple movies, and thought it would be interesting to have this view into the background of the madwoman in the back of my mind while reading Jane. We'll see how that works!


message 8: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Just finished Wide Sargasso Sea. I had difficulty with it, but it won me over in the end. Four stars. https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


message 9: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Finally finished Reading Lolita in Tehran. As good as it was, it kept getting pushed aside for novels and group reads.

Excellent. Four stars. my review


message 10: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments I replaced The Mill on the Floss with Middlemarch, the best book ever! my review, *****.


message 11: by Katy, New School Classics (new)

Katy (kathy_h) | 9189 comments Mod
Kathleen wrote: "I replaced The Mill on the Floss with Middlemarch, the best book ever! my review, *****."

Glad you enjoyed it.


message 12: by Bob, Short Story Classics (new)

Bob | 4781 comments Mod
I don't know how I will ever get around to reading Middlemarch, time, never enough time. And now that it is a group read with so many people liking it, I'll have to make time, some time soon.


message 13: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Thanks, Kathy!

And Bob, I hope you can find the time someday. We'd love to hear what you think!


message 14: by Katy, New School Classics (new)

Katy (kathy_h) | 9189 comments Mod
Yes, Bob we would love to know what you think of Middlemarch. I enjoy your reviews and am so sorry that my reviews are pretty uninteresting.


message 15: by Katy, New School Classics (new)

Katy (kathy_h) | 9189 comments Mod
Kathleen do you have a plan when you might read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter? I've got it on my list to read this year too, and it is always more fun to read a book with someone.


message 16: by Desertorum (new)

Desertorum Kathy wrote: "Kathleen do you have a plan when you might read The Heart is a Lonely Hunter? I've got it on my list to read this year too, and it is always more fun to read a book with someone."

I also have on my list, if you are reading it some time, I might be interested also :)


message 17: by Darren (new)

Darren (dazburns) | 1826 comments ditto for Heart Is A Lonely Hunter - maybe a Buddy Read in the offing...?


message 18: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Oh yay! I would love a buddy read of The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. How about May or June? Later would be fine too, but sooner might be tough for me.

I'll add something to the buddy read thread until we figure out a date. Thanks!


message 19: by Bob, Short Story Classics (new)

Bob | 4781 comments Mod
Having just finished The Heart is a Lonely Hunter all I can say is you all won't be disappointed. It is a written work of fine art, a book where the words paint pictures in your mind.


message 20: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Ooh. Tantalizing description. I can't wait!


message 21: by Katy, New School Classics (new)

Katy (kathy_h) | 9189 comments Mod
I will make time for The Heart is a Lonely Hunter anytime after I finish Kristin Lavransdatter, which I should easily finish this month. I thought it would take me longer, but it is so good I have mostly set everything else down.


message 22: by Pink (new)

Pink | 6556 comments Bob wrote: "Having just finished The Heart is a Lonely Hunter all I can say is you all won't be disappointed. It is a written work of fine art, a book where the words paint pictures in your mind."

Yep!


message 23: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Finished Their Eyes Were Watching God. ***** and right onto my favorites shelf!

Now I'm looking forward to The Heart is a Lonely Hunter!


message 24: by Lisa (new)

Lisa (lisarosenbergsachs) Those are two of my favorites also, Kathleen.


message 25: by Pink (last edited Jun 02, 2016 05:45AM) (new)

Pink | 6556 comments They are two really great books!


message 26: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments I'm behind on this challenge but just finished The Heart is a Lonely Hunter. Loved it!! My review.

Next up is Jane Eyre with the group. Oh boy!


message 27: by Bat-Cat (new)

Bat-Cat | 1300 comments Awesome Kathleen! Keep it up, you're doing great!!! ;-)


message 28: by Josh (new)

Josh (jaygold) | 49 comments Great work, Kathleen. This is an interesting list and some are on my TBR. Keep going strong!


message 29: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments This was my first and I think favorite of all of my challenges. :-) Three interesting and different for me four star reads, and three five star reads that made it onto my favorites list. And I'm only half way!

Now I have finally read Jane Eyre, and it was absolutely amazing. My review.


message 30: by Sara, Old School Classics (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 4584 comments Mod
So glad you enjoyed Jane Eyre, Kathleen. Lovely that you are liking your choices so much!


message 31: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Thanks Sara, and I continue to enjoy them!

We Have Always Lived in the Castle was my kind of scary--mostly psychological and mixed with humor. My **** review.


message 32: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Finished what's probably the wildest of my wildcards, Play It as It Lays. A story I wouldn't have been much interested in if it wasn't for her powerful writing style. Thanks to that, it will stay with me for some time. I gave it ****.


message 33: by Pink (new)

Pink | 6556 comments Kathleen wrote: "Finished what's probably the wildest of my wildcards, Play It as It Lays. A story I wouldn't have been much interested in if it wasn't for her powerful writing style. Thanks to that, it ..."

That looks interesting, glad to hear it was worth sticking with it!


message 34: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments I can't get ahold of a copy of Indiana, so will use my alternate Obasan in its place. Unfortunately I didn't enjoy this one. The writing style was really different and felt emotionless to me. The history of displacement of Japanese Canadians during WWII was important and enlightening though, so was worth reading for that.

Guess I can't like ALL the books. :-)

I started reading The God of Small Things. Strange experience with the beginning of this, but think I'm into it now.


message 35: by Terris (new)

Terris | 2338 comments I want to read that one! I'll be watching for your review :)


message 36: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Finished The God of Small Things. (Review here, Terris https://www.goodreads.com/review/show....)

It was hard to get into at first, because I couldn't keep track of the characters (I like it when a writer really grounds me in the characters at the beginning). Once I knew who was who though--oh my. This is a masterpiece. If you get into the style, it is actually fun to read, which is a nice contrast to the very heavy subject matter.

I'm confident I'll finish this challenge, but only with the use of my alternates. I had to give up on Indiana and The Death of the Heart because I couldn't get copies, and now it is too late. I'll read them someday though!


message 37: by Sara, Old School Classics (new)

Sara (phantomswife) | 4584 comments Mod
Glad you stuck with God of Small Things until it clicked for you.
I have The Death of the Heart on next year's list. With your warning, I will start looking for a copy early.


message 38: by Sue (new)

Sue K H (sky_bluez) | 3046 comments I'm glad you can still finish! That stinks that you couldn't get those books.


message 39: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1183 comments Kathleen, do you read only on paper? I mean, it's a bit late now, but Indiana is available for free if you use a kindle or tablet at all.


message 40: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Thanks, Leni. I don't mind e-versions once in a while, or for shorter reads, but really don't like to read that way. Just too much screen time! I also have trouble concentrating on audio for a long time, so while I'm thrilled to have both options, only go there when necessary. (I'm using both for The Wanderer, and think that is why it has taken me so long!) So I decided I wanted to wait and read Indiana in book form.

I'll definitely finish the others though. Took a peek at The Bluest Eye and can't wait to start it. And reading Flush is my end of the year present to myself!


message 41: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments I love Toni Morrison. She really digs deep and gets to the essence of things. The Bluest Eye was horrible but important. My review. Four painful stars.

So I have one more, Flush, which will be my treat if I finish everything else!


message 42: by Bob, Short Story Classics (last edited Dec 14, 2016 07:13AM) (new)

Bob | 4781 comments Mod
As a part of my Women's Century challenge I read The Bluest Eye earlier this year. I've been thinking about reading Morrison for a few years. I needed a book to fit the 1970's. Since I'd been wanting to read Morrison and this book fit my need, two problems were solved. In hindsight perhaps it wasn't the best way to pick a book. I was disappointed in my first selection of Morrison's work. The story just jumped around and switched from character to character, leaving young Precola lost in the confusion. The worst part is that I will most likely shy away from Morrison's other books.

I hope you finish your twelfth read of the challenge.


message 43: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Bob wrote: "As a part of my Women's Century challenge I read The Bluest Eye earlier this year. I've been thinking about reading Morrison for a few years. I needed a book to fit the 1970's. Since I'd been wanti..."

I think a lot of people feel that way about this book, Bob. I read somewhere that it is more a bunch of impressions than it is a story. I just happen to like that kind of thing, so it worked for me.

I should barely squeak by with my twelve books for this challenge, saved by the alternates. Thanks!


message 44: by Susie (new)

Susie | 731 comments Way to go Kathleen...you're closing in!


message 45: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Susie wrote: "Way to go Kathleen...you're closing in!"

Thanks for the support, Susie!


message 46: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1183 comments I'm hoping to barely squeak by with the help of my alternates too. But I don't have your excellent excuse of unavailable books. Go go go! We can do it!


message 47: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Leni wrote: "I'm hoping to barely squeak by with the help of my alternates too. But I don't have your excellent excuse of unavailable books. Go go go! We can do it!"

Nothing like taking it down to the wire, but we can, Leni, we can!


message 48: by Kathleen (last edited Dec 28, 2016 06:20AM) (new)

Kathleen | 3589 comments Done! Finished this with a fun flourish. My **** review of Flush.

I really enjoyed this challenge, and look forward to next year's!


message 49: by Leni (new)

Leni Iversen (leniverse) | 1183 comments Yay! Congrats!


message 50: by Pink (new)

Pink | 6556 comments Well done!


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