Classics Club Spin #11

Well, my last spin was a fail, so I was humming-and-hawing over whether I should do this one, but …….. I really need to start concentrating on my Classics Club list, if I want to finish it on time.  So, I’m in.

As per usual, the rules for the spin are:

  1. Go to your blog.
  2. Pick twenty books that you’ve got left to read from your Classics Club list.
  3. Post that list, numbered 1 – 20, on your blog by next Monday.
  4. Monday morning, we’ll announce a number from 1 – 20.  Go to the list of twenty books you posted and select the book that corresponds to the number we announce.
  5. The challenge is to read that book by February 1st.

I used the random list organizer here to choose the 20 books from my master list.  So my list ended up looking like this:
  1. She Stoops to Conquer (1773) – Oliver Goldsmith
  2. Dead Souls (1842) – Nikolai Gogol 
  3. Kidnapped (1886) – Robert Louis Stevenson
  4. The History of the Pelopponesian War (431 B.C.) – Thucydides 
  5. Huckleberry Finn (1884) – Mark Twain 
  6. The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (1798) – Samuel Taylor Coleridge
  7. One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch (1962) – Alexander Solzhenitsyn
  8. Brideshead Revisited (1945) – Evelyn Waugh
  9. The Lord of the Flies (1954) – William Golding
  10. On the Imitation of Christ (1418-27) – Thomas à Kempis
  11. Moby Dick (1851) – Herman Melville
  12. The Pilgrim’s Progress (1678) – John Bunyan
  13. On the Social Contract – Jean-Jacques Rousseau
  14. The Silver Chalice (1952) – Thomas Costain
  15. A Distant Mirror: The Calamitous Fourteenth Century (1978) – Barbara Tuchman 
  16. The Custom of the Country (1913) – Edith Wharton
  17. Fear and Trembling (1843) – Søren Kierkegaard
  18. The Small House at Allington (1864) – Anthony Trollope
  19. God in the Dock (1970) – C.S. Lewis
  20. Au Page d’Amour (1878) – Émile Zola
Well, my last spin was a fail, so I was humming-and-hawing over whether I should do this one, but …….. I really need to star concentrating on my Classics Club list, if I want to finish it on time.  So, I’m in.

I don’t know why, but I’m not excited about this list.  Is it because it seems unbalanced?  I’m not sure. Perhaps it’s because there is no book that really pops out at me and give me an anticipatory thrill.

Five books that I’m dreading to read:

1.  Moby Dick (no explanation necessary, right?)
2.  Brideshead Revisited (I’m not sure why this is on my list)
3.  A Distant Mirror (for length)
4.  God in the Dock (not in the mood to do it justice)
5.  On the Imitation of Christ (only because I have no idea what to expect)

Five book that I’m reasonably curious about:

1.  The History of the Pelopponesian War
2.  On the Social Contract
3.  Moby Dick
4.  God in the Dock
5.  Custom of the Country

Yes, I’m both excited and dreading Moby Dick and God in the Dock.  With A Small House at Allington, if I get it, I’ll switch it out for Framley Parsonage, which is the next book on schedule for my Barsetshire read.  Similarly with Zola, I would switch Au Page d’Amour to La Révè, which again is next in the Rougon-Marquart series.
Spin away, oh, Classics Club and I will accept my fate!

30 thoughts on “Classics Club Spin #11

  1. Don't dread MD. It's not that bad at all. I want to read it again. However, I did skip the chapter on whale anatomy b/c my friend told me it was totally boring and scientifically inaccurate.

    I'm curious about Rousseau's Social Contract, too. And The History of the Pelopponesian War, as well. I get to read both in my Histories section.

    The Imitation of Christis a spiritual narrative. Not riveting. It's Kempis' personal feelings on how to love, serve, and follow Christ. A quick read.

  2. Aw! It makes me sad you aren't lit up with a thrill for any of these! You should go through your whole to-read list and list twenty books you've been putting off to get through the lot above, and have a spin list that thrills you, of those. I think. 🙂 Reasonably curious is abominable. You should be blushing with excitement. (Sorry. That's the Marianne Dashwood in me talking!) 🙂

  3. The Lord of the Flies – that's a very interesting one! I hope you get that! 🙂

    The Rime of the Ancient Mariner – I must read that one day. It's not on my CC list, but I was going to read it for another challenge. Must read that. If you get that I'll read it too!

  4. I'm sorry to hear that you are not all that excited about your list. I hope you will be pleasantly surprised by whatever the spin gives you. Brideshead Revisited is so British; it has such a feel of time and place to it. I enjoyed reading it. And I don't think you can go wrong with Wharton!

  5. That's an interesting list. I've read eight of them. I also dreaded Moby Dick for years, I got it as a spin book earlier, it wasn't as bad as I expected. Brideshead is enjoyable. I have A Distant Mirror – unread, I should have put it on my list!

  6. You see, stuff keeps popping up that is included in our WEM project, which becomes a conundrum; do I read it twice?; do I wait for it to come up in our WEM process?; what if it doesn't come up before my spin deadline? Sigh! So much to think of.

    Grrrr ….. I hope I don't get The Imitation then. I'd like to read it at some point but I just finished The Rule of Saint Benedict and while I really liked it, I'd rather move into something else now.

    Huck Finn would probably be just what the doctor ordered!

  7. God in the Dock is not scary, just a sort of random assortment of essays and bits and bobs. I love A Distant Mirror, but it is long, thus scary! Iwould be way more scared of some of those other titles, though. In college Ihad to read Thucydides in about a week and Ididn't retain a word. I have a beautiful annotated edition now that Iam scared to read. Good luck!

  8. Hi Marianne …. ooops, I mean, Jillian …. 😉 I'm just not in a headspace to be really thrilled about many things at the moment, but eventually the clouds will clear, the rain will depart and I'll see the sky again. Just so you don't think I'm completely hopeless, there are books that would thrill me, just not at the moment. And I'm concentrating on finishing up some books for December, so I'm somewhat focussed on those. It's a nice feeling to actually be finishing some reads, a unusual feeling of accomplishment for me! 🙂

    Good idea …… I think that I'll use it for my next list.

  9. Actually, The Lord of the Flies would be good …. short, and I've been looking forward to reading it to adjust my immature view of it from high school.

    Okay, a buddy for The Rime of the Ancient Mariner. I'll hold you to it! 😉

  10. Thanks for the recommendation for Brideshead Revisited, TJ. I love everything British and it makes me feel so much better about it. I love Wharton. I do kind of hope I get her.

  11. Okay, so I'm feeling a little better about Moby Dick. I even think I might enjoy the whale anatomy section. 😉 Barbara Tuchmann is a great writer; her non-fiction reads like fiction so I will encourage you to pick it up sometime. I have it on my WEM Project history list so I know that I'll be forced to read it at a later date even if I don't get to it now.

    Happy spinning, Katrina!

  12. I've read some essays from God in the Dock before, but I'm just not in that headspace …. very unusual for me. The Greeks are like old friends to me so I'm quite enthused about meeting Thucydides. I tremble to guess what others you'd be scared of. I probably don't want to know. 😉

  13. It's been interesting to look through these spin lists and be able to spot various readers' progress through Trollope's Chronicles of Barsetshire. I'm also at Framley Parsonage like yourself.

  14. Have you been able to read them at a good pace? I started off well, but I've hardly read anything this year. I need to concentrate on both Trollope and my C.S. Lewis challenge in 2016. I'd love to start The Pallisers series after Barsetshire.

  15. We can have our own little mini Zoloathon if no 20 spins up on Monday.

    I read the Peloponnesian Wars when I was at school as I studied Ancient History. I loved it, but I am a history geek/buff!

    happy spin!

  16. We can have our own little mini Zoloathon if no 20 spins up on Monday.

    I read the Peloponnesian Wars when I was at school as I studied Ancient History. I loved it, but I am a history geek/buff!

    happy spin!

  17. I loved Framley Parsonage! Small House is also good but the heroine started to get on my nerves. I read Moby-Dick last summer and I did it mostly on audio, which helped because George Guidall is a great narrator. I don't think I'll ever read it again, though. Good luck with your spin pick!

  18. Oh, I'm so glad to meet another history/Greek lover! I'll be excited if I get it.

    Yes, Zola would be fun too. I've heard that The Dream is excellent so I don't think we could go wrong.

  19. Oh good. I've heard raves about Small House, so I can't wait to get to it. The more I think about it, the more I may be in the mood for Moby Dick. I wish I could read books on audio but I don't have the attention span. After years of constantly being interrupted, I need to get some practice in before I start listening to books. I did love Andy Serkis reading The Screwtape Letters though. He was fabulous and held my complete attention.

    Thanks, Karen, and I hope that you have a great spin too!

  20. "She Stoops" was a possibility on another spin and someone else mentioned that it was very good. Thanks, Laurie! I hope that we both get a book that excites, and perhaps surprises us!

  21. The Custom of the Country and The Small House at Allington are my two favorites on your list, but Framley Parsonage is good, too. Moby Dick just scares me… doubt I'll ever read it! Good luck Monday.

  22. I know what you mean by fail…my last spin The Golden Notebook…lets just say I crawled through it….but we don't let these minor setback impede us ….glad you joined…..I also have Huckberry…I LOVED the Custom of the Country…in fact Edith Wharton is another one of those writers in my eyes who can do no wrong! Moby Dick (Sigh!) Read it once……never reading it again! Brideshead Revisited is good in whimsy in-between wars social way!!

  23. Well, if one must fail, it's nice to fail together! 😉 Hmmm, perhaps if you get Huckleberry Finn, I'll arbitrarily change my choice and read along with you. Wharton's awesome, isn't she? Oh, another Brideshead recommendation! I'm not feeling nearly as "meh!" about it anymore. Are you spinning this time? I'll have to pop over to your blog and find out!

  24. I dreaded Moby Dick for years, but when I finally read it, it became a favorite. I've read Brideshead Revisited twice (years apart) and found it very enjoyable both times.

Thanks for visiting. I'd love to hear from you and have you join in the discussion!