Classic books

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  • Classic books
  • nickswolves
    Member

    Having just bought and read ‘Of mice and men’, which I thoroughly enjoyed, I’m wondering what other classics are worth a read – so what book would you recommend and briefly why?

    If you’ve never read Conrad’s Heart of Darkness, do so immediately. Gripping, fascinating stuff.

    I’d also suggest Tom Jones, by Henry Fielding. A very different style of book, but roaring good fun.

    sharkattack
    Member

    One Flew over the Cuckoos Nest
    To Kill a Mockingbird

    They’re the only two recognised ‘classics’ I have. Both excellent.

    pondo
    Member

    Thr Cruel Sea is ace.

    Premier Icon juanking
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    The Wasp Factory!

    jekkyl
    Member

    The Catcher in the Rye.

    Inspired a man to kill John lennon!

    Premier Icon cogglepin
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    Loved The grapes of wrath and nearly finished War and peace which is a fantastic read too. I like a decent length book to get my teeth into.
    Only book I’ve never finished was Moby Dick.

    Premier Icon Nick
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    100 Years of Solitude
    For Whom The Bell Tolls
    Madame Bovary
    Anna Karenina
    The Great Gatsby
    Revolutionary Road

    all good

    Every single person on the planet should read To Kill a Mockingbird.

    edlong
    Member

    The Picture of Dorian Gray’s good, if a little thin. A good quick read, I guess.

    On The Road’s such a cliche, but I really enjoyed reading it. Proper escapism.

    Junky (Burroughs) is pretty engrossing (dunno if that’s a recognised classic, just thought of it when thinking about Kerouac).

    +1 for One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest.

    If you liked Mice and Men, you should really read Grapes of Wrath next..

    5thElefant
    Member

    Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, and the sequel, Leila. Don’t just read Zen as you won’t know what the hell it was all about without Leila.

    Premier Icon onewheelgood
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    Siddhartha by Hermann Hesse

    Premier Icon cogglepin
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    Agree with Nick, to kill a mockingbird is a must read.
    Oh and The Count of Monte cristo.

    Premier Icon Drac
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    The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

    Premier Icon langylad
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    Not classics in their own right but anything by one of the three Scottish Ian’s, not a dud amongst them.

    Plus anything by Dickens, great stories

    avdave2
    Member

    You can’t go wrong with more Steinbeck. I think East of Eden is every bit as good as grapes of wrath and cannery row is also excellent.

    nickswolves
    Member

    Thanks, there’s some good suggestions so far – which I’m browsing at on Amazon.

    avdave2 – are Steinbeck’s other books anywhere near as good as ‘Of mice and men’?

    Drac – LOL!

    rob2
    Member

    Hardy – return of the native. Actually quite a happy story for hardy.

    Lord of the flies
    1984
    Robinson Crusoe
    Jane eyre
    The rainbow

    Grapes of wrath is superb.
    Trollope books are always a good read

    batfink
    Member

    The 39 steps…… “of it’s time” but good fun

    oh, and my favorite book evar: Gorky park

    2nd edit: Also, anything by Raymond Chandler

    Pigface
    Member

    The Jungle Book is brilliant,

    Premier Icon oldnpastit
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    Jane Eyre +1
    Cloud Atlas

    RichPenny
    Member

    East of Eden is a more satisfying novel than Grapes of Wrath IMO. I have enjoyed many of his books, though Cannery Row is probably my favourite. If you judge a books success by feeling compelled to re-read it, then Sweet Thursday and Tortilla Flat are worth a mention. Cannery Row is the only novel I have ever finished and found that I needed to read it again immediately.

    CountZero
    Member

    Erskine Childers The Riddle Of The Sands. Spies and skulduggery prior to the First World War on the North Sea coast. Excellent book, well worth reading, and free.

    Premier Icon kennyp
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    War of the Worlds.

    bokonon
    Member

    Not all “classics” as such, but all ace books – short books mainly because I’m rubbish with long books.

    Ray Bradbury – Farenheight 451
    Kurt Vonnengut – Cats Cradle (although I could give you a long list of his books which are ace)
    Pat Barker – Regeneration Trilogy
    Bowman – Ascent of Rum Doodle
    Chuck Palahniuk – Survivor
    Tressell – Ragged Trousered Philanthropist

    Premier Icon geoffj
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    are Steinbeck’s other books anywhere near as good as ‘Of mice and men’?

    Yes – cannery row and east of Eden are excellent

    Premier Icon dti
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    In Cold Blood , Truman Capote – first of it’s type and really good.

    aP
    Member

    One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich – Solzhenytsyn
    Walden – Thoreau
    Strangers and Brohers – CP Snow
    The Outward Urge – Wyndham Lewis
    The Fountainhead – Ayn Rand

    Premier Icon seosamh77
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    Big fan of Orwell. Funnily enough not really 1984. Down and out in Paris and London and homage to Catalonia would be my favourites. Actually now you mention it might reread down and out.

    gordimhor
    Member

    Burmese Days is another Orwell classic

    winston_dog
    Member

    +1 Cannery Row

    Love a lot of Orwells stuff.

    Daphne du Maurier did some great stuff, not sure if it’s classed as “classic” or not. Jamaica Inn is a great read.

    surfer
    Member

    Tressell – Ragged Trousered Philanthropist

    This is my favourite book. I have read it a dozen times and bought and lent it to dozens of people! As an aside he is buried in the small cemetery opposite the entrance to Walton prison on Hornby Road.

    Also anything by George Orwell and Solzhenytsn as above.

    Premier Icon bedmaker
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    Consider the lilies is a fantastic short read.

    Premier Icon chakaping
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    Caleb Williams – William Godwin

    Dangerous Liaisons – Choderlos de Laclos

    Huckleberry Finn – Mark Twain

    Frankenstein – Mary Shelley

    The History of Rasselas, Prince of Abissinia – Samuel Johnson

    Premier Icon chakaping
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    And you didn’t specify novels, so I’ll also mention La Rochefoucault’s Maxims.

    A book of incredibly sharp short observations on human nature which ought to be required reading for anyone planning on using an internet forum.

    For example…

    “There is more pride than kindness in our reprimands to people who are at fault; and we reprove them not so much to correct them as to convince them that we ourselves are free from such wrongdoing.”

    saxabar
    Member

    Huxley’s Brave New World. Richer and more multilayered than Orwell’s 1984 I reckon.

    mogrim
    Member

    Hamlet

    Some poetry:
    Paradise Lost
    TS Eliot – The Wasteland

    Premier Icon kennyp
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    Another vote here for Cannery Row.

    And then there’s The Secret History, probably the best book I’ve ever read.

    avdave2
    Member

    I’d also put in a mention for Robert Graves
    Goodbye to all That – his account of WW1 which is apt in 2014 and I Claudius – a book i picked up only because I’d read everything else on the bookshelf. It’s not like your reading about ancient Rome you are quite simply there, a stunning book.

    Premier Icon dannybgoode
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    Dracula – an astonishing book and nothing like the 400000000 movies made based on the original story.

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