Last year I think I read a book for every category, but I didn’t write reviews for all of them. Here is my tentative list for 2020. I haven’t read as much as I thought I would in January so far, but I will catch up soon!
1. 19th Century Classic. Any classic book originally published between 1800 and 1899.
Democracy in America by Alexis de Tocqueville
2. 20th Century Classic. Any classic book originally published between 1900 and 1970. All books in this category must have been published at least 50 years ago. The only exceptions are books that were published posthumously but were written at least 50 years ago.
A Canticle for Leibowitz by Walter Miller
3. Classic by a Woman Author. The Lais of Marie de France
4. Classic in Translation. The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism by Max Weber (German)
5. Classic by a Person of Color. The Souls of Black Folk by WEB Dubois
6. A Genre Classic. Any classic novel that falls into a genre category — fantasy, science fiction, Western, romance, crime, horror, etc. The Complete John Silence Stories by Algernon Blackwood (I meant to read it last year…)
7. Classic with a Person’s Name in the Title. First name, last name or both.
Le Morte d’Arthur: King Arthur and the Legends of the Round Table by Sir Thomas Malory
8. Classic with a Place in the Title. Any classic with the proper name of a place (real or fictional) – a country, region, city, town, village, street, building, etc. Examples include Notre Dame de Paris; Mansfield Park; East of Eden; The Canterbury Tales; Death on the Nile; etc.
The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell
9. Classic with Nature in the Title. A classic with any element of nature in the title (not including animals). Examples include The Magic Mountain; The Grapes of Wrath; The Jungle; A High Wind in Jamaica; Gone With the Wind; Under the Volcano; etc.
The First Men in the Moon by H.G. Wells
10. Classic About a Family. This classic should have multiple members of the same family as principal characters, either from the same generation or multiple different generations.
I will decide on this one later…
11. Abandoned Classic. Choose a classic that you started and just never got around to finishing, whether you didn’t like it at or just didn’t get around to it. Now is the time to give it another try.
And this one…
12. Classic Adaptation. Any classic that’s been adapted as a movie or TV series. If you like, you can watch the adaptation and include your thoughts in your book review. It’s not required but it’s always fun to compare.
Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray