Classic Literature Book Lists
Independent culture newsletter
They've withstood the passage of time to bewitch countless readers all over the world. But, with such a wealth of great literature, it can be hard to know where to start. Fret not! We've sifted through them to come up with a list of works no book-lover should miss our 20 Classic Books you have to read before you die. Melville's masterpiece was based in-part on the true story of the Essex , which was adapted into the film The Whale.
Swann's Way, the first part of A la recherche de temps perdu, Marcel Proust's seven-part cycle, was published in In it, Proust introduces the themes that run through the entire work. The narr Ulysses chronicles the passage of Leopold Bloom through Dublin during an ordinary day, June 16, Alonso Quixano, a retired country gentleman in his fifties, lives in an unnamed section of La Mancha with his niece and a housekeeper. He has become obsessed with books of chivalry, and believes th
These are our picks for the 50 most essential classic books. You know, the ones that everyone should get around to reading sooner, rather than later. These books have meant a great deal to readers throughout the centuries, and they distinguish themselves as firsts and bests, sure, but also unexpected, astonishing, and boundary-breaking additions to the canon. Everyone has his or her own definition of a literary classic, and our choices span the centuries, from the 8th century B. No matter your definition of classic literature , you'll see that these books have stood—and are standing—the test of time, which is why we think they should be on your must-read list.
Well, what makes a classic book? My eight-year-old asked this very question after spending several days with her nose buried in Charlotte's Web. Here's the catch. For me, classic books need to be readable because I'm not studying literature at university these days. There are many important books published decades or even centuries ago that have great significance but I'm not going to recommend them for your reading enjoyment. The prime example is Moby Dick , which I have read and I will never recommend. Life's too short and that novel is too hard to read.