Saturday, October 22, 2011

Winter Reading

My friend Chris over at Where the Pavement Ends recently posted about the books he's diving into as the weather gets colder.  His new bride is seeking to read through "the classics" this winter, and Chris asked for help in compiling a list* for her.  Here you go, my lovelies!

Here are 50 works of fiction (in no particular order)** that I think fall into the classics category that everyone should read.  You'll notice that many of them are young adult and some even older children's level, but I think it's the enduring (and endearing) story that counts and we should all stay young at heart! :)

1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. Emma - Jane Austen
3. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
4. Persuasion - Jane Austen
5. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
6. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
7. Little Dorrit - Charles Dickens
8. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
9. Peter Pan - James M. Barrie
10. The Lord of the Rings (complete and unabridged) - J.R.R. Tolkien
11. The Hobbit - J.R.R. Tolkien
12. A Midsummer Night's Dream - Shakespeare
13. Romeo and Juliet - Shakespeare
14. Hamlet - Shakespeare
15. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
16. Anne of Green Gables - Lucy Maud Montgomery
17. Little Women - Louisa May Alcott
18. The Watership Down - Richard Adams
19. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
20. James and the Giant Peach - Roald Dahl
21. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
22. The Chronicles of Narnia - C.S. Lewis (these could possibly count as 7 total, but I count them as one.  Up to you.)
23. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
24. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
25. The Man in the Iron Mask - Alexandre Dumas
26. Charlotte's Web - E.B. White
27. Trumpet of the Swan - E.B. White
28. Stuart Little - E.B. White
29. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
30. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
31. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
32. Frankenstein - Mary Shelley
33. Harry Potter Series - J.K. Rowling
34. North and South - Elizabeth Gaskells
35. 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea - Jules Verne
36. Pygmalion - George Bernard Shaw
37. The Time Machine - H.G. Wells
38. White Fang - Jack London
39. The Pilgrim's Progress - John Bunyan
40. The Jungle Books (make sure to find an edition that includes Riki Tiki Tavi) - Rudyard Kipling
41. A Bear Called Paddington - Michael Bond
42. Black Beauty - Anna Sewell
43. The Borrowers Series - Mary Norton
44. The Cricket in Times Square - George Selden
45. The Swiss Family Robinson - Johann Wyss
46. Little House Series - Laura Ingalls Wilder
47. The Redwall Series - Brian Jacques
48. The Cat Who Series - Lillian Jackson Braun
49. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
50. Uncle Tom's Cabin - Harriet Beecher Stowe

*If some of these titles are not on an official "Classics" list somewhere, then they ought to be.
** Yes, I have read all of these.  Some are more favorites than others, but I've read each one through.

I hope that helps, Chris and Cort! This list looks so inviting, I think I will also make a few trips up to the library and check out some of my favorites to enjoy while curled up with a cup of hot tea!

What are some of your favorite classic books, and why?


  1. #47! I recently re-read through the redwall series myself! I've been collecting them for YEARS.
    Wonderful list, and a great jumping off point! Thanks dear!

  2. Gone with the Wind should be on that list as a counter-point to your including Uncle Tom's Cabin. The vocabulary and use of language in GWTW is a thing of beauty! This year is the book's 75th Anniversary, and it has had quite a history!

  3. Chris- you are quite welcome.
    Jamie- It probably should be on that list, but I hated it. LOL Maybe it can be #51 in a list of 100. ;)

  4. Thanks for this list I'll have a closer look at very soon. I've just found an Alice in Wonderland Macmillan edition at the thrift shop, I'm so delighted to introduce my son to these wonderful treasures.
    I even should read some of them, for myself too ;)