I will be posting the results of my other challenges before the end of the year. Thank you Karen at Books and Chocolate for hosting this fun challenge. Overall, I was satisfied by how I finished. My goal was to read at least six of the categories, and I completed nine. Below are the books I reviewed for the challenge along with some final thoughts about each one. Click on the title to go to my full review:
19th Century Classic: 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
This was one of the first books I read this year, and I really enjoyed it. It’s a fun novel that captures the spirit of exploration. I have more novels from Jules Verne on my shelves that I cannot wait to read!
20th Century Classic: Eye in the Sky by Philip K. Dick
I selected one of the lesser known PKD novels for this category, but trust me, I was far from disappointed. This novel was deeply psychological and filled with the author’s trademark wit and humor.
Classic by a Woman Author: Little Men by Louisa May Alcott
While not as great as its predecessor, this is a book still worth exploring. I wouldn’t call this one a novel, as much as a collection of stories about a school for wayward boys. It was interesting to see Jo’s character development following Little Women.
Classic in Translation: We by Yevgeny Zamyatin
As many of you know, dystopian fiction is my bag. This was an interesting experience, and I could easily see the influence on later works such as 1984.
Classic Comic Novel: Invitation to a Beheading by Vladimir Nabokov
I enjoyed my second journey with Nabokov. After the unsettling experience of Lolita, I found this novel to be a perfect piece of absurdist fiction. If you love highly philosophical and challenging works, then this is the novel for you.
Classic Tragic Novel: The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde
This was such a rewarding experience for me. I feel a kinship to Oscar Wilde for being someone who clearly marched to the beat of his own drummer. Although Dorian Gray is a tragedy, there is plenty of humor to be found here. Recently, I purchased a collection of Wilde’s plays and look forward to reading those soon.
Classic Novella: A Clockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess
Another dystopian classic! As you can expect, this one is trippy as hell. It is a thought-provoking study of both human psychology and government interference.
Classic From the Americas (includes the Caribbean): One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
Oh Gabriel García Márquez, you certainly made me a believer this year. This novel is a massive family drama dripping with magical realism. I admit that I was extremely frustrated at how so many characters had the same name. This one can get very confusing, so I highly recommend starting with some of his short fiction before tackling this one.
Classic From Africa, Asia, or Oceania (includes Australia): Death on the Nile by Agatha Christie
This novel is a brilliantly written mystery starring one of my favorite characters of all time. Poirot is a genius, and he knows it! This one is a definite standout with some wonderful exotic locations.
Stay tuned for more reviews as I play catch-up!