5 Classics I’ve read and 5 I haven’t

After writing my previous post about classics I got thinking about the ones that I’ve read in the past, as well as the ones I want to read in the future. So I’ve compiled a list of just that.

Classics I have read

1. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Bronte

This was probably one of the first classics I read out of my own choosing. I can vaguely recall sitting down in my bed and slowly progressing through it and remains as one of my favourite, due to that soft spot I have for the novel.

2. Animal Farm, George Orwell

I read Animal Farm at school in my English class. Did I enjoy it? I suppose? What would have made it more enjoyable was if I was educated on Russia at the time, that way I could have properly understood the parallels, rather than having a vague knowledge.

3. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott

I may be slightly cheating with this, but for Little Women I read an abridged version…and before anyone starts calling me out, I was 11, okay? To my memory I devoured it in one sitting, so that must mean that I enjoyed it (either that or was desperate to finish), however the ending did annoy me and just didn’t turn out how I desperately wanted it to. (If you’ve read it you probably know where I’m coming from.)

4. The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde, Robert Louis Stevenson

Another one I studied at school, this time for GCSE. Upon first reading I did enjoy it, and once I understood it and gone through it in depth I was able to appreciate the writing a lot more. However I was tired of the novel due to repetitive reading of it which spoilt it a tad for me.

5. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett

I put off reading this one for a long time; it was told to read it by my teacher to “expand my reading” and like any child, that meant I was going to avoid reading it at all cost. I stumbled on discovering it a couple years later, liked it, and have reread it since. Admittedly I never gave it back to my primary school library (woops!) but at least it’s found a new home (and, I mean, it was well worn already?).

Classics on my TBR list

1. A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens

I’ve been to two of the Dickens museums now, the one in Broadstairs and the one in London, my copy of this novel being bought in the latter. Despite owning it, I still haven’t read it, and honestly have no real excuse to why, the most I know of it being its famous first line: ‘It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…’ which I’m not going to continue because it is a long sentence and my knowledge fades after those 12 words.

2. To The Lighthouse, Virginia Woolf

Again, I own this one. I bought it on my recent trip away, at Tate St Ives and it’s got the most gorgeous cover! I’ve been told it’s really good by a close friend of mine, who loves Woolf, so it’s on my TBR list.

3. The Great Gatsby, F.Scott Fitzgerald

This must be one of the most famous classics; I suspect there’s a reason behind it, so I’ve added it to the list as well. In addition, I’m in love with the style and fashion of the time so I’m planning to watch the movie straight after. The trailer looks so good!

4. The Odyssey, Homer

The Odyssey is a really old classic,  it was written during the times of the ancient Greeks and is studied and read by people learning about Classic Civilisation (commonly known as ClassCiv). I was interested in Myth when I was younger, with days full of Percy Jackson novels, so I’d quite like to re-kindle this affection and thought that The Odyssey would be a good place to start.

5. Sense and Sensibility, Jane Austen

Another female writer needs to be on this list, so I’ve gone with ‘ole Jane here. She’s simply a literary genius who’s severely underappreciated, at least by my friends who find the meanings to be too small and the matters too boring. Late last year I attended a talk on her by a University lecturer (I think from Oxford?) who really opened my eyes to her style of writing, so with this I want to read it more attentively and potentially look up articles and analysis on it, that way I can hopefully gain a deeper insight into the novel.


I hope you’ve found some reading inspiration here because classics do tend to be a good read, once you’ve got over the initial tediousness. All of them, par Animal Farm and The Secret Garden, are available on Amazon Kindle, and if you haven’t got the device itself you should be able to download the app and access them that way.

What classics have you read and what did you think about them?


Photo by Karim Ghantous on Unsplash



15 thoughts on “5 Classics I’ve read and 5 I haven’t

  1. Briana | Pages Unbound says:

    For some reason, The Great Gatsby always seems to come up as a lot of people’s favorite book, or at least their favorite classic. One of my professors said she did interviews for her alma mater for kids who couldn’t do an on-campus interview with the admissions office and she always asked for the applicants’ favorite book, and everyone said The Great Gatsby! But I personally feel “meh” about it.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Tea Time is Book Time says:

    Oddly enough, I’ve read a number of the classics on this list, mostly from school (The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, The Great Gatsby, and The Odyssey). I read Jane Eyre, The Secret Garden, and Sense and Sensibility on my own. Little Women I’ve tried to read half a dozen times and just couldn’t get through it. I’m impressed that you are willing to read Dickens, because I don’t think I could make it through his books.

    My favorite classic that I read, outside school at least, was East of Eden by John Steinbeck. He is just an amazing writer. It’s long, but worth it.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Debbie J says:

      I’m yet to attempt to read Dickens but I do find some classics quite slow paced with a fair amount of endurance necessary, so I understand where you’re coming from.
      What’s East of Eden about? It seems to ring a bell but I don’t know anything about it.


      • Tea Time is Book Time says:

        It’s a bit hard to explain, since it takes place over multiple generations. But its about two families, the Trasks and Hamiltons, set in Salinas Valley, California. A big aspect of the story are the similarities to the Book of Genesis (Cain and Abel, the fall of Adam and Eve). I realize that makes it sound really boring, but it’s not!


      • Debbie J says:

        I have trouble explaining books don’t worry, I have a couple favourites that end up sounding bad when I try to summarise them too! But I’ll add it to my growing TBR 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Lily @ Sprinkles of Dreams says:

    Ohh, I have such a soft spot for classics. I adore Jane Eyre, and everything by Jane Austen, so I’d definitely recommend reading S&S. ❤

    I really want to get to The Secret Garden and A Tale of Two Cities, as well as Little Women sometime. And I hope you enjoy The Great Gatsby more than I did! 🙂

    Lovely post, Debbie!! ❤ 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Debbie J says:

      Thanks! Definitely make sure to read The Secret Garden, it’s a children’s classic but I think it’s really sweet.

      I think I definitely romanticise classics but I don’t really mind because at the end of the day it just means I read more “better quality” literature.


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