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Bel-ami

US classics

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I've realised that my reading of US 'classics' is almost nil, so this year I'm going to try and get through some of the major omissions which focus on the development of US society or moments in history - maybe then I'll understand Americans a bit more!

 

As it stands, I'm going to read / re-read* the following - please feel free to recommend any that you think I should add.

 

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer*

Uncle Tom's Cabin

Little Women

The Red Badge of Courage*

The Scarlet Letter

The Age of Innocence

The Grapes of Wrath

Of Mice and Men

The Great Gatsby*

To Kill A Mockingbird

The Catcher In The Rye

Catch 22*

 

 

 

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I loved The Scarlet Letter, I hope you enjoy it!

 

Of the American classics I have read I'd definitely recommend The Last of the Mohicans by James Fenimore Cooper, The Crucible by Arthur Miller and The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton. 

 

I also want to say Edgar Allan Poe (I read a really good collection of his short stories last year, published by Heron Books) but I don't think that really fits with your criteria of moments in history.  

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I would say The Sound and the Fury belongs on your list. Also, Their Eyes Were Watching God would be an important one as it comes from the viewpoint of an African-American woman.

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Thanks Hayley - have to admit I had forgotten Last of The Mohicans (which I have indeed read before) - I'll check out the House of Mirth for sure.

 

and thanks Cechak - good call on Huck Finn and I will investigate the others also - that will all keep me very busy.

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My favourite US classic is McTeague, a Story of San Francisco - Frank Norris. It was a achance find in a second hand bookshop and I loved every word of it. I've never manage to finish anything else of his though.

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I just finished the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, which I thought was very good. It was funny and entertaining, and historically interesting.

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That’s a great list.  The only one I didn’t like was The Great Gatsby. I found it a bit boring.

I agree with others - The Adventures of  Huckleberry Finn and the Last of the Mochicans are worth reading.....

also:

A Farewell to Arms - Ernest Heminway

In Cold Blood - Truman Capote

The Call of the Wild - Jack London 

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How about Breakfast at Tiffanys? A good modern classic!  I'd also second Moby Dick.

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Is Slaughterhouse Five considered a US classic? I read it in my late teens, and at the time thought it was a masterpiece. Trouble is, I can’t remember much about it all, today. Maybe I should re- read.

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12 hours ago, Loretta said:

Is Slaughterhouse Five considered a US classic? I read it in my late teens, and at the time thought it was a masterpiece. Trouble is, I can’t remember much about it all, today. Maybe I should re- read.

 

I read it a few years ago and I can't remember much about it either, so don't go beating yourself up! 

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The Old Man and the Sea - Ernest Hemmingway

 

East of Eden - John Steinbeck

 

Cannery Row - John Steinbeck

 

Oh heck, anything byJohn Steinbeck

Edited by muggle not

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The Grapes of Wrath

To Kill a Mockingbird
Gone With the Wind

In Cold Blood

The Great Gatsby

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

The Color Purple

Black Like Me

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On 10/08/2018 at 8:29 AM, poppy said:

The Grapes of Wrath

To Kill a Mockingbird
Gone With the Wind

In Cold Blood

The Great Gatsby

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest

The Color Purple

Black Like Me

 

Absolutely agree with these (well, except the last two, which I haven't yet read).

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