RMFAO (Reading My Frigging A** Off) discussion

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Reading-Challenges > RMFAO 2020 Classics Catchup

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message 1: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
What a surprise to realize that we are already in our sixth year here at RMFAO! We started the Classics Catchup Challenge with a focus on books published prior to 1900. That was quickly extended to 1940 to include the great mysteries of the 1920s and 1930s. More wonderful books kept creeping in and now the general guideline is anything pre-1950, but there are quite a few later books that are already considered classics and may be included.

This is your chance to catch up on some great reads with the bonus advantage of being easy on the budget. Except for the newer ones, most are available free in numerous formats (including audio!) from such sites as Project Gutenberg, ManyBooks and LibriVox. It can also be combined with any of the other Challenges for a double header, triple play and even in a few cases, one book could count for all four Challenges at once.

You do not need to choose your books ahead of time, you've got all year so you can pick and choose as the mood strikes you. Late-comers are welcome. Who's in? Just choose a level and go for it - or don't decide on a level now and just read as the mood strikes you.
Level 1: Casual Reader: 2 books
Level 2: Frequent Reader: 3 - 5 books
Level 3: Bookworm: 6 - 8 books
Level 4: Scholar: 9 - 11 books
Level 5: Professor: 12 or more books

Other RMFAO challenges:
RMFAO 2020 Genre Challenge
RMFAO 2020 Series Challenge
RMFAO 2020 Audiobook Challenge

You can also read blog posts relating to the various Challenges or the group in general at: https://thereadingbud.com/rmfao/

Heena will post the graphic she created for us. Thank you, Heena, for all the work and forethought you have put into getting us ready for 2020.


message 2: by Christina (last edited Oct 06, 2020 07:37PM) (new)

Christina Byrne (cmbyrne87) | 12 comments 2020 Classics Catchup
Level 1: Casual Reader: 2 books
Level 2: Frequent Reader: 3 - 5 books
Level 3: Bookworm: 6 - 8 books
Level 4: Scholar: 9 - 11 books
Level 5: Professor: 12 or more books

1. The People of the Abyss 1/8/20
2. The Alchemist 1/22/20
3. Great American Short Stories 1/25/20
4. The Old Man and the Sea 2/11/20
5. The Handmaid's Tale 2/18/20
6. The Diary of a Young Girl 3/24/20
7. Their Eyes Were Watching God 8/30/20
8. The War of the Worlds 9/8/20


message 3: by Fran (new)

Fran | 367 comments I'm aiming for Level 5 for this challenge. I managed to read 34 during 2019, and am hoping for 40 with 2020.


message 4: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Fran wrote: "I'm aiming for Level 5 for this challenge. I managed to read 34 during 2019, and am hoping for 40 with 2020."

Good for you, Fran! Looks like I didn't even make Level 5 for 2019. The demise (or at least near-demise) of the Yahoo Groups really socked it to my classics reading. Not sure what I'll go for in 2020.


message 5: by Cheryl (last edited Dec 30, 2019 01:52PM) (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
Very ambitious, Fran! You inspire me to try and read more classics. I will try for level 5.


message 6: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Cheryl wrote: "Very ambitious, Fran! You inspire me to try and read more classics. I will try for level 5."

Good luck with it Cheryl. I sort of got burned out on classics with being involved in quite a few classic groups over the years - since the 1990s. I was already at the point that I would often struggle to get up any enthusiasm for the group reads. (I'm sure you noticed I dropped out of Les Miserables. Good for you and Wanda for hanging in there with it.)


message 7: by Holley (new)

Holley | 37 comments I’m going to shoot for Level 2. There are a few classics I know I’ve missed!


message 8: by Ashley (new)

Ashley Moore (ashleym99) | 71 comments I am going to try for level 2 with 5 books. Not sure which ones yet.


message 9: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
I will try for Level-3.


message 10: by Ashley (new)

Ashley Moore (ashleym99) | 71 comments Finished 1. The War of the Worlds.


message 11: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
#1 The Other Celia by Theodore Sturgeon - 4/5

My review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Thanks, Dagny, for the suggestion and the link tot he story! It was an excellent read!


message 12: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Heena wrote: "#1 The Other Celia by Theodore Sturgeon - 4/5

My review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Thanks, Dagny, for the suggestion and the link tot he story! It was an ex..."


Glad you enjoyed it, Heena. When I was rereading it after several decades, I had forgotten all the early part. I think you can figure out the point where it stuck in my mind and I remembered.


message 13: by Marjorie (new)

Marjorie (marjorielest) | 115 comments 1) Way Station by Clifford Simek audiobook


message 14: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
1.) Howards End by E. M. Forster
3 stars


message 15: by Fran (new)

Fran | 367 comments 1.) Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
2.) Hiroshima - John Hersey


message 16: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
#2 Zeritsky's Law by Ann Warren Griffith - online text - 3/5
A very peculiar story. Worth a read.
It can be read online here: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/51234

#3 The Martian Chronicles by Ray Bradbury - E-book - 4/5
My first by Ray Bradbury and I enjoyed it to bits. Albeit a bit slow and takes its time to build, I liked it nonetheless. I found the tone of the stories similar to that used by Isaac Asimov in Gods Themselves.
My review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...


message 17: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Heena wrote: "#1 The Other Celia by Theodore Sturgeon - 4/5

My review: https://www.goodreads.com/review/show...

Thanks, Dagny, for the suggestion and the link tot he story..."


Yes! And I am sure I won't be able to forget it for a long time either.


message 18: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
2.) The Weird Picture by John R. Carling
3 stars. Melodramatic gothic novel that was fun to read, if a bit over-the-top.


message 19: by ThirTeenTh (new)

ThirTeenTh TurTle (faizkt3) Hii guys. I am a fresher here. Going to attempt level 3. Started
#1 white fang by Jack london.


message 20: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
ThirTeenTh wrote: "Hii guys. I am a fresher here. Going to attempt level 3. Started
#1 white fang by Jack london."


It's always fun when someone starts a reading challenge for the first time. You are off to a great start already!


message 21: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
ThirTeenTh wrote: "Hii guys. I am a fresher here. Going to attempt level 3. Started
#1 white fang by Jack london."


Welcome! I can still remember binging on all those dog stories - not Jack London, but horse stories too were always great favorites of mine.


message 22: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
3.) The Lady of the Basement Flat by Mrs. George de Horne Vaizey
2 and a half stars


message 23: by Holley (new)

Holley | 37 comments 1. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott (HB)
4/5


message 24: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
4.) The Enchanted April by Elizabeth von Arnim
4 stars


message 25: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
5.) Brood of the Witch-Queen by Sax Rohmer
3 stars. Supernatural pulp fiction from 1918.


message 26: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Good for you, Cheryl! Can you imagine, I haven't read a single classic yet this year. (Thank goodness we have it as a Genre month, lol.)


message 27: by Cheryl (last edited Mar 01, 2020 01:28PM) (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Good for you, Cheryl! Can you imagine, I haven't read a single classic yet this year. (Thank goodness we have it as a Genre month, lol.)"

There’s lots of time still left, Dagny. I’ve been having some luck by searching Project Gutenberg under Random mode to find unusual books. (At the top of their homepage, right under where it says “Free ebooks” if you click the blue highlighted “Book Search”, it gives you an option for Random search.) That’s how I found this latest book.


message 28: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
6.) The Joss: A Reversion by Richard Marsh
2 stars.


message 29: by Heena (last edited Apr 03, 2020 06:52AM) (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
#4 The Haunted Hotel: A Mystery of Modern Venice by Wilkie Collins - 2/5
The characterisation was a problem for me and as a result, I wasn't much able to enjoy the book.

#5 The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Rebert L. Stevenson - 4/5
A brilliant book. Enjoyed every bit of it. Though being a novella it still felt like a slow burn.

#6 The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson - 5/5
This book totally blew my mind! It was every bit as good as every horror fan makes it out to be. The build-up was amazing and the impending-sense-of-doom was so awesome that I've never experienced before! A definite must-read!!


message 30: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
Heena,

I agree about The Haunted Hotel. His others novels like The Moonstone, The Woman in White, Armadale, and The Law and the Lady are much better. Maybe try one of those in the future?


message 31: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
Cheryl wrote: "Heena, I agree about The Haunted Hotel. His others novels like The Moonstone, The Woman in White, Armadale, and The Law and the Lady are much better. Maybe try one of those in the future?"

I loved Armadale! I guess I'll be going for The Moonstone next... and then The Woman In White. Thanks for the recs. Appreciate it!


message 32: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Heena wrote: "I loved Armadale! I guess I'll be going for The Moonstone next... and then The Woman In White."

Most of his books are also at LibriVox for free audios. In fact there are two versions of both the above.


message 33: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
7.) Dan, the Newsboy by Horatio Alger, Jr.
3 stars.


message 34: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Most of his books are also at LibriVox for free audios. In fact there are two versions of both the above. "

Yes, but why is that? Two versions I mean?


message 35: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
#7 The Magician's Nephew by C.S. Lewis - 4.5/5

#8 The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis - 4/5


message 36: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Heena wrote: "Yes, but why is that? Two versions I mean?"

I've seen numerous cases of multiple versions. Except for translations by different translators which I don't consider multiple versions, it is usually just a case of different readers. Some readers are better than others. Occasionally two people might be working on the same one at the same time and both go up, There are some instances with a cast of people, multiple people doing different voices. Once in a while it might be from an updated edition of the book, with new material or something added. Mostly though I've just found it to be the same version but with different reader(s).


message 37: by Dagny (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Well, I now have at least two classics coming up - my first for the year! - since I'm proofing a couple to go up at Project Gutenberg.


message 38: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Well, I now have at least two classics coming up - my first for the year! - since I'm proofing a couple to go up at Project Gutenberg."

Thanks for doing the proofing, Dagny! It's important work, especially during quarantine time.


message 39: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "I've seen numerous cases of multiple versions. Except for translations by different translators which I don't consider multiple versions, it is usually just a case of different readers. Some readers are better than others. Occasionally two people might be working on the same one at the same time and both go up, There are some instances with a cast of people, multiple people doing different voices. Once in a while it might be from an updated edition of the book, with new material or something added. Mostly though I've just found it to be the same version but with different reader(s)."

That makes sense. Thanks for explaining it to me. I was wondering about this ever since I saw two versions of Jeckyl and Hide book and was thinking if I was missing out on something by not going for the 2nd version.


message 40: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Well, I now have at least two classics coming up - my first for the year! - since I'm proofing a couple to go up at Project Gutenberg."

Wow! You are a hero, Dagny! Thanks for doing this, it makes it so much easier for all of us to read these books because of you and others who do this. Many thanks <3


message 41: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
8.) A Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter
3 stars


message 42: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
9.) The Blue Lagoon by Henry de Vere Stacpoole
4 stars.


message 43: by Heena (new)

Heena Rathore P. (heenarathore) | 2094 comments Mod
#9 The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis - 3/5

I didn't like it as much as I liked the previous books. I am going by the Chronological Order and this was #3, so the next one is Prince Caspian and I'm sure it'll be definitely better than this one.


message 44: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
10.) A Fair Barbarian by Frances Hodgson Burnett
3 stars.


message 45: by Holley (new)

Holley | 37 comments 2. The Awakening - Kate Chopin (PB)
5/5 - absolutely loved it.


message 47: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
11.) St. Martin's Eve by Mrs. Henry Wood
3 stars


message 48: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
12.) Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
5 stars


message 49: by Dagny (last edited Apr 30, 2020 01:18PM) (new)

Dagny (madamevauquer) | 3009 comments Mod
Cheryl wrote: "12.) Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
5 stars"


You made it! What a long haul it was. Glad you enjoyed it.


message 50: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl | 1754 comments Mod
Dagny wrote: "Cheryl wrote: "12.) Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
5 stars"
You made it! What a long haul it was. Glad you enjoyed it."


Read through in a year! Honestly, I needed to do it that way. It would have felt too overwhelming, otherwise, and I might have given up during one of the author's "social commentary interludes."


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