Thursday, 20 November 2014

The Classics Club "50" Survey

Being swamped with reads and my two courses (one of which is taking three times as long as they estimated), I was going to wisely ignore the 50 question survey from the Classics Club.  But when I read a few of my blogging friends interesting posts, I had to give it a whirl.  It took 2 weeks to compile but worth every minute.  I'd almost forgotten the habit of past contemplation, which brings such value into our present reading habits.

1. Share a link to your club list.

Here's a link to my current list.  I’m about 1/5 of the way through.

2. When did you join The Classics Club? How many titles have you read for the club? 

I joined on November 12, 2013.  My complete list is comprised of 168 books:  15 books from Ancient times; 16 books from Medieval/Early Renaissance;  41 books from Early Modern times; and 96 books from Modern times.  Of the 168 books, I’ve finished 33, so I’m exactly on track (or ½ a book behind, if I want to be picky!).

3. What are you currently reading?

Le Morte d’Arthur by Sir Thomas Malory and Utopia by Sir Thomas More.  Two books by two “sirs” ….. boy, how did that happen?

4. What did you just finish reading and what did you think of it?

Four Shakespeare plays, Romeo & Juliet, Othello, A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Much Ado About Nothing.  I’m reading them for an edX Shakespeare course.  Both new to me were Romeo and Juliet and Othello and I really enjoyed them, especially Othello.  The last two were re-reads: I love Much Ado but A Midsummer Night's Dream has never really been a favourite.

5. What are you reading next? Why?

For Christmas, I’d like to read Dickens,  The Chimes; for the spin, I’ll be reading Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift; God in the Dock for my C.S. Lewis Project; and I hope to get to Framley Parsonage by Anthony Trollope to continue the series, but I am doubting that will happen until January.

6. Best book you’ve read so far with the club, and why?

Absolutely, without even having to think about it, Paradise Lost by John Milton. It completely blew me away; his characterization of Satan was by far the best that I’ve ever encountered, and the scope of the work was so ambitious that one could only admire his ability, even if he fell short in certain areas.  War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy, would probably come second.  As I just mentioned on Ruth’s blog, after I finished this one book, I felt I’d had the benefit of reading three!

7. Book you most anticipate (or, anticipated) on your club list?

Oh, the anticipation changes depending on my mood.  Right now, I’m looking most forward to Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott and The Histories by Herodotus. 

8. Book on your club list you’ve been avoiding, if any? Why?

My dread of certain books, however, does not often change.  I would go to the furthest Antipodes to avoid The Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels and Aristotle’s Ethics. I would have also paid to avoid anything by Henry James, James Joyce, Ernest Hemingway, etc.   I have few of these writers on my CC list, which was really dumb because now they’ll all be populating my second list. 

9. First classic you ever read?

I believe it was Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.  Either that or The Vicar of Wakefield  by Oliver Goldsmith.  I was late starting to read classics and, honestly, read mostly garbage before I hit 20.

10. Toughest classic you ever read?

Well, because I was a classics newbie, I’d have to say The Vicar of Wakefield but only because my brain had to be trained to absorb well-written prose.  Thankfully I was a fast-learner.  But after I was “classicfied”, I would probably choose The Divine Comedy.  On the surface, it’s not a tough read but if you want to dig deeper, there are so many layers to it that I don’t think you could mine them all if you read it once per year.   

11. Classic that inspired you? or scared you? made you cry? made you angry?

The Chosen by Chaim Potok.  The relationship between one of the characters and his father was so well-drawn out, yet vibrating with conflict and tension.  I don't want to give too much away, but for most of the book, you're shocked at how one character treats the other, then at the end you find out why he has been acting in that manner, and it's a good reason.  Then you experience the internal conflict within yourself ...... his behaviour is wrong yet it's not wrong.  You want to condemn him yet, how, when his motivations were pure?  It's really quite a fantastic book.

12. Longest classic you’ve read? Longest classic left on your club list?

Definitely, The Count of Monte Cristo followed by War and Peace.  And the longest left on my list ……????  Wow, thanks for this question ….. it’s made me realize the number of true chunksters I have yet to read.  And it’s scary!  Probably The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (did I really put this on my list?) and then possibly, The Fairie Queene.

13. Oldest classic you’ve read? Oldest classic left on your club list?

That would be The Epic of Gilgamesh, which I think dates to around 2000 B.C., and the oldest one left is Herodotus' Histories.

14. Favorite biography about a classic author you’ve read — or, the biography on a classic author you most want to read, if any?

I’ve read a great number of biographies this year and I’m not sure that I could pick a favourite.  Thomas Merton’s Seven Storey Mountain was wonderful, as was Surprised by Joy by C.S. Lewis.  And I can’t miss mentioning Augustine’s Confessions, as well as saying that I began a new relationship with Montaigne after reading selected portions of his Essays!  

15. Which classic do you think EVERYONE should read? Why?

Oh, I don't think I can answer this one. I need to give recommendations based on the person or it could go horribly wrong.

16. Favorite edition of a classic you own, if any?

I have a first edition of The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens, which has four engravings missing.  Every time I look at it, it gives me a thrill. 

17. Favorite movie adaption of a classic?

Pride and Prejudice from 1995 with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle; Cold Comfort Farm with Kate Beckinsale; and  Kenneth Branaugh’s Mucho Ado About Nothing.

18. Classic which hasn’t been adapted yet (that you know of) which you very much wish would be adapted to film.

Dante’s The Divine Comedy, or a good adaptation of Le Morte d’Arthur, both likely impossibliites.

19. Least favorite classic? Why?

Rebecca by Daphne du Maurier.  Should I start ducking the tomatoes?  It was painful!  The characters didn’t resemble real people and their actions were stupefyingly dense.  I’m still trying to brace myself to read some more of her works.

20. Name five authors you haven’t read yet whom you cannot wait to read.

1.             Albert Camus
2.             Winston Churchill
3.             Herodotus
4.             Honoré Balzac
5.             Samuel Johnson

21. Which title by one of the five you’ve listed above most excites you and why?

I don’t know but grasping at a first thought, I’ll say, A Journey to the Western Islands of Scotland by Samuel Johnson.

22. Have you read a classic you disliked on first read that you tried again and respected, appreciated, or even ended up loving? (This could be with the club or before it.)

I can’t think of any that specifically fit this criteria, but I did hate A Picture of Dorian Gray for about ¾ of the book and then ended up loving it.  I also thought I’d hate The Dharma Bums by Jack Kerouac but was charmed by it.  Perhaps I’m really a closet-hippie, perish the thought! 

23. Which classic character can’t you get out of your head?

Monsieur Myriel from Les Miserables, Satan from Paradise Lost, Sarpedon from The Iliad (don’t ask me why),  Moomintroll and Socrates.  Whew!  What a list!.

24. Which classic character most reminds you of yourself?

Definitely Elizabeth Bennet!!

25. Which classic character do you most wish you could be like?

Cassandra from I Capture the Castle but probably for only certain parts of her life, Gerald Durrell for the part of his life that he was on Corfu as a child, and Elizabeth Bennett.

26. Which classic character reminds you of your best friend?

Believe it or not, Jane Bennett.

27. If a sudden announcement was made that 500 more pages had been discovered after the original “THE END” on a classic title you read and loved, which title would you most want to keep reading? Or, would you avoid the augmented manuscript in favor of the original? Why?

Pride and Prejudice and Jane Eyre (I think O mentioned these books too) In these books it always seems like the fun ends after marriage, and it would be groundbreaking to discover that it doesn’t!

28. Favorite children’s classic?

Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome and Finn Family Moomintroll by Tove Jansson.

29. Who recommended your first classic?

I chose it myself.

30. Whose advice do you always take when it comes to literature. (Recommends the right editions, suggests great titles, etc.)

My blogger friends, particularly O who finds absolute treasures, Jean, who I think knows about every book that was ever printed, and Ruth who picks truly wonderful reads.  I also go to Nancy for history books and other eclectic finds, and Sophia for YA fiction; they don’t always fit into the classics category but I’m mentioning them in any case.

31. Favorite memory with a classic?

Reading Middlemarch by George Eliot for the first time.  I read it in the summer on the beach and was completely enthralled for the 6 days it took me to read it.  I can still remember the crash of the waves.

32. Classic author you’ve read the most works by?

Definitely C.S.  Lewis.  I could probably teach a course on him now.  I probably know more about him than he knew about himself.  Wait, no, Jean knows more than I do.

33. Classic author who has the most works on your club list?

William Shakespeare.  There is really no excuse as to why I haven’t read all of his plays. 

34. Classic author you own the most books by?

C.S. Lewis again.  Although I do own a lot of Enid Blyton.  Would she count as a classic?  And Dickens ….. lots of Dickens.  Oh, and I have about 10 different copies of The Lord of the Rings.

35. Classic title(s) that didn’t make it to your club list that you wish you’d included? (Or, since many people edit their lists as they go, which titles have you added since initially posting your club list?)

Not really any I can think of.  I’m happy with my list and I know I’ll be making another.  Now if you’d asked me which books I’d remove from the list, I’d have a detailed answer!

36. If you could explore one author’s literary career from first publication to last — meaning you have never read this author and want to explore him or her by reading what s/he wrote in order of publication — who would you explore? Obviously this should be an author you haven’t yet read, since you can’t do this experiment on an author you’re already familiar with. :) Or, which author’s work you are familiar with might it have been fun to approach this way?

Hmmm, this is difficult to answer.  Perhaps Balzac?  But that would be an enormous undertaking.  I'm reading through Zola's Rougon-Macquart series right now (on book four) but since I've read him, he wouldn't count.

37. How many rereads are on your club list? If none, why? If some, which are you most looking forward to, or did you most enjoy?

I had 11 re-reads. I was probably looking forward to The Odyssey the most of all and I did get tons more out of it on the second reading.

38. Has there been a classic title you simply could not finish?

The Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco.  I felt that he had some ulterior motive or that I was being dragged on a journey by someone I didn’t trust.  Sounds odd, I know.  It’s on my list so I’m going to give it another try.  Oh, wait, I should have said Tender is the Night by F. Scott Fitzgerald.  Whenever I read Fitzgerald’s works I feel like I’ve wasted my time and I don’t think I’ve ever felt like this before with a classic. 

39. Has there been a classic title you expected to dislike and ended up loving?

Definitely! To The Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf.  I loved her stream of consciousness in this book.

40. Seven things you’re looking forward to next year in classic literature?

1. Start to read poetry regularly.
2. Reading more essays.  I so enjoyed Montaigne this 
3. Reading The Cantebury Tales paired with The Brubury
    Tales, a modern re-telling.
4. Continuing my WEM & Shakespeare challenges.
5. Concentrating on regularly reading some children's
    classics for my much neglected children's book blog,
6. Reading more regularly in French (we'll see how that
    Challenge, I think.  For those of you who don't know
   me, lists make me nervous, but this challenge seems
   open enough that I hope to make it work.

41. Classic you are definitely going to make happen next year?

The Cantebury Tales, and The Histories, and possibly adding Ivanhoe and The Fairie Queene as good intentions.

42. Classic you are not going to make happen next year?

I am dreading Gibbon's The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire. Good grief, why did I put it on my list?  I mean I want to read it, but when it’s on a list you have to.  I also wish to avoid The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud and Thus Spoke Zarathustra by Friedrich Nietzsche.

43. Favorite thing about being a member of the Classics Club?

Being part of a blogging community has been the best thing.  I’ve made so many new blog friends and it’s been wonderful to be able to share a passion for reading with everyone and be introduced to new books.

44. List five six fellow clubbers whose blogs you frequent. What makes you love their blogs?

Yipes!  It’s so hard to pick just five, or even six!

1. O's blog Behold the Stars - she finds such obscure classics from well-known authors (I don't know how she does it) and her reviews are so well-researched, amazingly well-written and chock-full of interesting tidbits.

2. Ruth @ A Great Book Study - I just love how thoughtful her reviews are; she gives insights into the deep profound mysteries of life, probably without knowing that she does it!

3. Jean @ Howling Frog Books - I have never met a blogger who has introduced me to more of an eclectic assortment of excellent books.  It's great!  And she's smarter than me! ;-)

4. Jason @ Literatue Frenzy - he's not always active (on his blog, I mean) but always deeply intuitive.  His posts are wonderfully eloquent, passionate and insightful, and he is perhaps the most polite blogger I know!

5. Nancy @ Ipsofactdotme - a truly contemplative reader and one with great perseverance (with much struggle, she taught herself to read in French).  Her reviews are insightful and structured in a way that make them refreshing reads.  She's always very gracious.

6.  Carol @ Carol's Notes - by reading just one of her posts, you can tell that she is so obviously a writer.  She blogs not only about books, but about human experience and human nature, with a wisdom that is truly amazing.  It takes me about four days to think about her posts before I'm able to respond.

Perhaps if I stop with numbers, I can get a couple more in:

Newly discovered blog:  Mockingbirds,Looking Glasses, and Prejudices – it’s quite startling how similar we are.  However we can’t agree about Mr. Rochester. 

Honourable mention:  Marianne’s blog --- I know she likes to keep it low key but I can’t rave enough about her writing.  It's just beautiful.  Every post, every comment is a delight to read and leaves you feeling like you’ve just received a unique and refreshing warm spring breeze.

And lastly, all the blogs on my blogroll to the left.  They are all excellent.

45. Favorite post you’ve read by a fellow clubber?

I think this is my favourite question.  I'd much rather talk about other people than myself! ;-)

I loved O’s post on Agnes Grey --- it really connected the reader to the book and the author and I think would increase the enjoyment for a first time reader X4.  

Jean's Classics Club June Meme response was so insightful and timely.  

Jason's post on Sense and Sensibility from a man's point of view ---- just great!

Carol's How Did Emily Dickinson Know About Thought Police was a treat; she is a master at interweaving human nature and wisdom into her posts.

Phinnea's first post on our Le Morte d'Arthur read-along left me in tears of laughter ....... Her posts are hilarious!

Ruth's posts on Lewis and Clark were pretty awesome. It's so difficult to write about non-fiction and make it sound exciting, yet she is amazingly adept at it.

......... seriously, I could go on and on with this question ........

46. If you’ve ever participated in a readalong on a classic, tell about the experience? If you’ve participated in more than one, what’s the very best experience? the best title you’ve completed? a fond memory? a good friend made?

Oh my, yes!!  In spite of feeling that I've had a rather average reading year, I participated in two read-alongs that were just amazing: the Paradise Lost Read-Along and The Odyssey Read-Along.  They both happened at times when I had time to read and I learned sooooo much from having the time to read contemplatively.  I hope I can get free time that will coincide with another read-along in 2015.

47. If you could appeal for a readalong with others for any classic title, which title would you name? Why?

I’m not sure.  Perhaps Les Miserables by Victor Hugo, which is not even on my list and would be a re-read for me, but I think it would be a lot of fun! I’d also like to do a read-along on a non-fiction book because I think it would be weird, but I have no idea which one.

48. How long have you been reading classic literature?

Not very long.  I probably began in my early 20s, but seriously since 2010.

49. Share up to five posts you’ve written that tell a bit about your reading story. Reviews, journal entries, posts on novels you loved or didn’t love, lists, etc.

         1. A little about me
2. Paradise Lost (my book of the year)
3. The Beginning of 2014
4. War and Peace (my longest read)
5. Extra, extra, read all about it!
50. Question you wish was on this questionnaire? (Ask and answer it!)

I think everything has been well covered!


  1. First of all, that was totally fun reading. Second of all, I had to scroll a mile to get to the comments. Anyway...

    ...the Chosen is a GREAT story. I need to reread it.
    How perfect that you remind yourself of E.B. and your best friend is J.B.
    Ten different copies of LOTR? My daughter would love you!
    Also, a Les Miz read-along is in high demand. Something needs to give soon.
    Finally, you are way too kind with your generous opinion of my inept ramblings of classic literature via my blog, but thank you, seriously.


    1. You know, I bought an odd looking paperback copy of The Hobbit used and when I looked online, people wanted $300 for it. Wow! I have to see where I put it. It never occurred to me that it would be valuable because it looks so odd with a greyish-black boring cover. Who knew? I haven't checked if I have any unusual LOTR p/backs yet. Honestly I probably have 20 copies but I didn't want to look too much like a nut!

      Yes, a Les Mis read-along would be great. I'm trying to leave enough open time to be able to be freely spontaneous next year.

      If your "ramblings" are inept, I'd love to read your writing when you're eloquent! ;-) In any case, every word was sincere!

  2. Just breezing through to say I enjoyed reading your answers! I love your goals for the coming year. :)

    1. Well, if I make 3-4 of my goals, I'll be happy, but I should be able to accomplish at least 6 of the 7.

      I'm happy to see your smiling face ..... oops ..... lovely favicon again, and am also pleased to see that you're not completely buried under schoolwork. I suspect you'll be happy when Christmas break starts!

    2. Oh, yes. Very happy. You too, I imagine. (Also, thanks for your very sweet words above. I'm not sure if you saw my answer at my place before my blog blew away like a puff of smoke again, but you made my day when you said you might read Gone with the Wind in 2015. No pressure of course! Just wanting to is a sweet smoke indeed.) :-) xx

    3. I didn't see your answer but I hope to one day! ;-) Your blog reminds me of a European market: you find some wonderful treasure one day, but next week it's no longer there. You know it will be back sometime; but you have to wait. Waiting is not something North Americans do well, but it's actually a valuable skill to learn. And I think the "treasure" is that much more appreciated when you find it again! Keep being you, Marianne!

      Honestly, I have seen sooooo many positive reviews and comments about Gone With the Wind, that I now can't wait to read it. But sadly I must until I get some more free time. I have a list on one of my groups on Goodreads with my 2015 plans, so I'll make sure to put it on there!

    4. Aw, thank you! :-) Click my name & you'll find the blog has moved again. To Blogger this time. I don't know why. I just felt like moving. :-) xx

      Gone with the Wind. is a treasure worth waiting for. It's on my CC List for a fifth read.

      Since you missed it, here's our exchange from my prior blog:


      You wrote:

      Guess what? Even though Gone With the Wind is not on my classics list, I have decided that I'm going to read it sometime in 2015! I keep hearing such wonderful things about it and I keep feeling that I'm missing out. I am REALLY looking forward to it.

      I kind of like how you disappear and pop up again. It makes life interesting. Who wants everyone to be the same? Not me!

      Now, if I can ever find the time to complete my "50 questions" post, I can announce my Gone With the Wind plans.

      I answered:

      Oh! I have a tingle of excitement! For the 50 Question post (which is fun to read!) & for you to read The Greatest Novel Ever Written Ever.

      I hope you like it, but no pressure! At least not from me:

      (Here I linked to an image of Margaret Mitchell which I captioned "her imminence.") :-)


    5. It's hard to keep up with you! Whew! ;-) I'll make note of the new blog, thanks so much for letting me know.

      What a lovely picture of Margaret Mitchell! That look ....... her expression makes you wonder what was going on behind those eyes. I'm going to try to do a little background reading before I start the novel. Thanks for the link!

  3. Very fun to read! And you are so nice to mention me. :) I'd completely forgotten that post about the June meme, so now I'm feeling all clever.

    I think we had better plan a mass Les Mis readalong...

    1. I'd actually been following your blog for at least a year before I started my own, so you'd win the prize for the first blog I ever followed. That is, if there was a prize. There's not. Sorry. ;-)

      Two thumbs up for Les Mis. It's been over five years since I read it last so I think it's time to visit Jean Valjean again.

    2. Aw, that is so nice! That means a lot to me. :)

  4. Goodness, I didn't realise you had Gibbon on your CC list! :O

    (That's all I can say, my mouth is just open!)

    Faerie Queene - you know what? I hated it, but I sort of want to re-read it.... I'm drawn to it! I don't know why! I'll read along with you if you want? I don't mind when, so if you want to you can let me know. Might make up for our Decameron didn't-read-it-along :)

    I read a tiny bit of Churchill last night - not going to stick with it for now (I actually only started it because it was the nearest to hand and I was too cold to get out of bed) but I did really like it, and I'm thinking I would like to read his Second World War books next year.

    Funnily enough, I was thinking of reading Goldsmith. I have it right next to me :)

    1. You know what? I think we have great minds that think alike but drivel off onto other things. Yikes, what does that mean? That we're really smart but we have no sense? Perhaps better not to ask. ;-)

      I would love to do a Fairie Queene read-along. I find I do better with these types of things if I'm set up to post up-dates. I don't think I would have gotten through Le Morte d'Arthur without it. I don't know how you feel about that ........ you're probably more of a free reading spirit than I am, but let me know. It would be later in the year though; I have two people wanting to do reads in January and I am possibly considering both Ulysses and The Infinite Jest (which I completely stall on), so in spite of my resolution to be less busy, I've already fallen off the wagon. Zounds!

      Churchill is sitting right here next to me ....... well, his books I mean, not him ....... that would be scary. I so want to get to some of his works soon.

      I think the problem is not with the number of books I want to plan for 2015, it's the size of them. I don't know where I picked up this chunkster-habit. It was completely unintentional.

      Ooo, yes, Goldsmith. I've been thinking about him alot lately. I have just this week and I'm free of my Dante course (Shakespeare runs a little longer but it's a first year course, so it's much easier) so I'll be able to start completing some books that have been sitting here silently chiding me. I can't wait!

  5. Thank you so much for you kind words is wonderful to have you as a blogger who reads 'quality' books and yet has the time to comment on blogs and offer insightful information in your own posts. I have been inspired to read Shakespeare ( due to your WS project), work on the 1000 books list from the Guardian and read more children's classics! Your goals are to be admired and I hope 2015 will be a great blogging year! I was unaware of this 50 question list. If I read War and Peace one day.....I have you to thank.

    1. You're welcome, Nancy. Your blog is just so awesomely unique that I just had to share it.

      I'm glad that I've inspired you! Just with that encouragement I can count 2014 a blogging success! 2015 is already shaping up to have a reading mind of its own, at least in the beginning months. I'm looking forward to it!

    2. Oh, and I encourage, prod, and push you to read War and Peace. I think that you'll enjoy it!

  6. I just read your review of it...again. I'm one step closer to the book than yesterday! :)

    1. If you can read War and Peace slowly and let it sink it, I think that's the best way to read it. And you need time to digest some of Tolstoy's arguments/philosophy/history lessons. I couldn't believe it took me as long to read it as it did, but at the end, I was grateful I didn't read it all in one gulp, as I think I appreciated it more.

  7. cup of joy runneth over!! Thank You sooooo much for the kind words!! Rochester was always a thorn in my side ;) But we have more stuff in common - Pride and Prejudice with Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle is my all-time favorite adaption from a Classic!! Rebecca...Oh!! Cleo...we are the only ones to dislike that book so actively!!!!! And I could NEVER finish The Name of a Rose....I mean what is with that book?????

    1. You're so welcome! I've really been enjoying your blog.

      With The Name of the Rose, think "semiotics". Yes, I had to look that up. It's the study of meaning-making, the philosophical theory of signs and symbols and he tries to use this discipline in his works, thinking, I guess, that we're all clever enough to figure it out. Huh?! ;-) I have a guide to the book now, so if I read it again I will perhaps get something of what he's trying to convey. His tone in the book irritated me and I don't think he understood medieval monks very well (yes, I'm the expert. Ha! ;-) ), but I do plan to give it another try.

      Ah, Rebecca ....... I rarely want to smack characters in books but I did want to with both Max and his nameless wife. Ugh!

  8. A fun read! I think I'm going to have one too! :D

    Paradise Lost ahead of War&Peace?Interesting....
    By the way,just out of curiosity,have you read Elizabeth Gibbon's Starlight?

    Also,I'm here to say that I'm hosting a Folio giveaway for Xmas.Given that you've been incremental in making my experience on wordpress really,really good,I wish you take your chance to win a Folio book. :)

    - I hope the comment goes through.Last time,I commented on Gulliver's Travels only to see that the comment disappeared! :o

    1. Yes, Paradise Lost before War and Peace, believe it or not. Milton's crafting of Satan was superb ...... he even managed to fool many readers.

      I will check out your Folio giveway certainly .......

      I have had quite a few of my comments on other blogs disappear lately too! I have to remember to copy them before I post and check them afterwards. It's very frustrating, isn't it?

      I'm happy to see that you're not completely overloaded with schoolwork that you don't have time for blogging! Thanks for stopping by!

  9. Have enjoyed reading your answers and am in awe at how much you accomplish. Read a glowing comment on one of these lists about The Name of the Rose so now will have to read it myself to see who I will agree with.

    1. Thanks, Cat!

      Please take my comments on The Name of the Rose with a grain of salt, because honestly I haven't given it a fair chance. I'll be interested to hear your thoughts on it when you do get around to reading it!

  10. I'm undecided on Hemingway, right now. While I quite liked his "The Old Man and the Sea" back when I read it in college, I didn't at all care for "A Farewell to Arms". However, I had a similar experience with "The Great Gatsby" in college, and when I read it again two or three years ago I enjoyed it so much that I decided to read Fitzgerald's other novels. So, I'm planning on giving "A Farewell to Arms" another chance. :)

    As regards "Rebecca", I didn't care for it either. I think only the last part of the book had me hooked somewhat, but, in general, my reaction to it was lukewarm at best.

    Anyway, congratulations on having got so much read. You have many tough titles on your list! All the best with the rest. :)

    1. I just read The Old Man and the Sea and really enjoyed it, so I'm planning to give Hemingway another chance ..... with trepidation. I, too, enjoyed Gatsby more when I read him last year than in high school, but I still didn't really love it, and when I read Tender is the Night ...... well, needless to say, it will be a long time before I read another of his works.

      Oh, another person who disliked Rebecca! Well, that makes three of us. ;-)

      Thanks for your wishes, Saari. Glad you found your way here!

  11. Lovely answers! :-)

    Le Morte d'Arthur and Utopia at the same time! Wow, that's impressive!

    I'm with you in your avoidance of Henry James, believe me ;-).

    And while I don't completely share your dislike for Rebecca, I found it to be only so-so. To this day, I still believe Hitchcock did wonders in adapting this novel and actually "turning" it into a classic ;-).

    And thanks for having introduced me to a handful of great bloggers I knew nothing about :-).

    1. I'm really loving Utopia, but perhaps I'm odd. ;-) I quite like flowing with More's ideas.

      Thanks for reminding me about the Hitchcock Rebecca; I'd forgotten about it.

      And you're so welcome; the blogging world is a wonderful place for making new connections!