Back to the Classics


Back to the Classics 2016 is up!

Announcement post on Karen’s Books and Chocolate can be found here.

My planning post can be found at Back to the Classics 2016


1. A 19th Century Classic: Can You Forgive Her by Anthony Trollope
2. A 20th Century Classic: The Song of the Lark by Willa Cather
3. A classic by a woman author: Alexander’s Bridge by Willa Cather
4. A classic in translation: The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux
5. A classic by a non-white author.
6. An adventure classic: The Story of the Treasure Seekers by E. Nesbit
7. A fantasy, science fiction, or dystopian classic: Over Sea and Under Stone by Susan Cooper
8. A classic detective novel: The Crime at the Noah’s Ark by Molly Thynne
9. A classic which includes the name of a place in the title: Death in the Andamans by M.M. Kaye
10. A classic which has been banned or censored.
11. Re-read a classic you read in school (high school or college): Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
12. A volume of classic short stories.

All books must have been published on or before 1965 in order to qualify, and must be read during calendar year 2016.

Back to the Classics 2015 (Completed 12/31/15)


Announcement post on Karen’s Books and Chocolate can be found here

Planning posts:

Back to the Classics 2015 (Part 1)
Back to the Classics 2015 (Part 2)

Completed categories:

1. A 19th Century Classic: Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy.
2. A 20th Century Classic: The Ambassadors by Henry James.
3. A Classic by a Woman Author: The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton
4. A Classic in Translation: A Hero of Our Time by Mikhail Lermontov
5. A Very Long Classic Novel: North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell
6. A Classic Novella: Lady Susan by Jane Austen.
7. A Classic with a Person’s Name in the Title: Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens.
8. A Humorous or Satirical Classic: Faro’s Daughter by Georgette Heyer.
9. A Forgotten Classic: Miss Marjoribanks by Margaret Oliphant
10. A Nonfiction Classic: Winter in Arabia by Freya Stark
11. A Classic Children’s Book: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle.

Uncompleted categories:

12. A Classic Play. Your choice, any classic play, as long as it was published or performed before 1965.

My thoughts on the 2015 challenge:

I completed everything except the play. I got about halfway through Twelfth Night, so I had really good motivation right up to the end, and then I just fell apart. I don’t like reading plays – or short stories – so I knew I would struggle with that category the most. In any event, since I completed 11/12 categories, and since Karen’s rules only require completing six of the categories, I’m going to consider myself a winner. I haven’t yet done a wrap-up post, and I might, just for fun!

This remains one of my favorite challenges. I have until March 1, 2016 to get my introductory posts up to participate in the 2016 challenge!

Back to the Classics 2014 (completed 12/31/14)

back to the classics2014

Hosted by: Karen at Karensbooksandchocolate.

Organizational posts:

Mandatory categories can be found here.
Optional categories can be found here.


Categories list:


Classic by a Woman Author: Agnes Grey by Anne Bronte: (1/6/2013, post here)
Classic That Has Been Adapted into a Movie: The Enchanted April by Elizabeth Von Arnim: (4/6/2014, post here)
Classic by an Author that is New To You: Madame Bovary by Gustave Flaubert: (4/29/14, posts: Part I, Part 2, Part 3)
Classic in Translation: Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak: (6/1/14: Book 1, Book 2)
Historical Fiction Classic: Arabella by Georgette Heyer (6/23/14, post here)
A Classic About War: One of Ours by Willa Cather: (7/1/14, post here)
19th Century Classic: Barchester Towers by Anthony Trollope: (7/1/14, post here)
A 20th Century Classic: Tender is the Night: (7/23/14, post here)
An American Classic: The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (10/2/2014, post here)
A Classic Mystery, Suspense or Thriller: The Mistress of Mellyn by Victoria Holt (10/24/14, post here )

My thoughts on the challenge:

This one was a whole lot of fun, and I will definitely participating again in 2015. As you can see from my original organizational posts, I ended up substituting a fair number of books. I’ll admit that I tried to read The Guns of August by Tuchman, but ended up failing miserably. I was able to shuffle stuff around and assign Willa Cather’s One of Ours (which was originally intended to be my American classic) to that category, and plug in The Haunting of Hill House by Jackson to that category.

I can’t pick a favorite, because I really enjoyed a number of these books. I can easily, however, pick a least favorite – I really didn’t like Fitzgerald’s Tender is the Night. Not even a little.

I intended to re-watch The Enchanted April, but never got around to it, and probably won’t in the remaining 18 days I have available to do so. It’s a super-cute movie, though, so, check it out!

Karen’s announcement post for next year’s challenge is here.

I finished all of the mandatory categories, and three of the optional categories. Therefore, I get two (2) entries in the drawing!


  1. Well, Guns of August is on my list for 2015–I’m going with an audio version, so maybe that will help me finish it!

    I loved Enchanted April, book and movie. Tender is the Night didn’t do much for me either.

    Congratulations on finishing the challenge.

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