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KEV67

KEV67's getting well read project

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Now that I have read (almost) War and Peace, and having read (but not understood) Ulysses last year, I feel I have read most the great books. Now it's just Dante, Shakespeare, Beowulf and the Greeks, but maybe I don't have to worry about them. However, I still have a bit of a TBR to conclude my getting well read project:

  • Clarissa by Samuel Richardson
  • Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • A La Recherche du Temps Perdu by Marcel Proust (do I have to?)
  • Paradise Lost by John Milton
  • Something by John Faulkner (do I really have to?)
  • Portrait of a Lady by Henry James (not looking forward to this)
  • Something by D.H. Lawrence
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker

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23 minutes ago, KEV67 said:

Now that I have read (almost) War and Peace, and having read (but not understood) Ulysses last year, I feel I have read most the great books. Now it's just Dante, Shakespeare, Beowulf and the Greeks, but maybe I don't have to worry about them. However, I still have a bit of a TBR to conclude my getting well read project:

  • Clarissa by Samuel Richardson
  • Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
  • A La Recherche du Temps Perdu by Marcel Proust (do I have to?)
  • Paradise Lost by John Milton
  • Something by John Faulkner (do I really have to?)
  • Portrait of a Lady by Henry James (not looking forward to this)
  • Something by D.H. Lawrence
  • Dracula by Bram Stoker

 

Beowulf is amazing, Shakespeare sublime, not read much by the Greeks myself, Crime and Punishment is well worth the trouble, John Faulkner (why?), and Dracula is also amazing. I have not read all of Paradise Lost but Milton's other work is astounding - my father used to quote On His Blindness from time to time. 

 

I too have ambitions for Clarissa, Les Miserables, Proust and Portrait of a Lady, simply for the pleasure of reading them.  I'll get there eventually.

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Les Miserables is a fabulous book, but you have to be in the right frame of mind to read it. Proust,alas,defeated me at the two or three attempts I made at reading the series; Clarissa I found an easy read, but quite honestly, a flimsy plot stretched over the length of the book .Crime and Punishment I remember reaching about halfway,then putting it aside as something more interesting came along (and never picking it up again!) Dracula, has been written about on this board before; I love it, but many readers feel it is dull and boring, because of the style of the  writing. D.H.Lawrence is a writer who I always found tedious and almost unreadable (as with C.Dickens,another big no from me!) I have read some Henry James, and cannot recall specific titles, so they failed to impress, obviously! And Paradise Lost was a wonderful read, when I got to it aged around twenty or so. Faulkner i have never read, although I have often been told that I should. But be comfortable with what you read; as I have grown even more ancient, I have decided that life being too short, if a book fails to 'grab me' within the first fifty or so pages, I abandon it. There are so many other good books out there, waiting!

Edited by timebug

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1 hour ago, timebug said:

if a book fails to 'grab me' within the first fifty or so pages, I abandon it. There are so many other good books out there, waiting!

 

Me too. 

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I loved Dracula, I started it expecting a difficult read but was very pleasantly surprised!

 

Les Miserables is on my shelf, so I’ll be interested to see what you think of that.

 

Why are you not looking forward to Henry James? 

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I have tried reading Dracula before. I did not like it and gave it up, but I will try it again. I am thinking about reading something by John Faulkner because of the Great American Novel. I gather he used to write them, or at leàst one of them. 

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I have started reading The Red and the Black by Stendhal. I read in the introduction that Marie-Henri Beyle (Stendhal's real name) was one of the French officers that retreated from Russia in 1812, which I have just been reading about in War and Peace. What are the chances of that?

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