Classics Club spin #20

It’s been a while since I did one of these, and even longer since I read and reviewed the chosen spin book.  I do read it, it’s always the reviews that I fall behind with.  Anyway, let’s see what happens this time around.Here’s how The Classics Club explains things.

I’ve been tweaking my original list regularly of late.  And some of the books that appear on the spin list might seem as if they are not on the most recent classics club list.  That’s because I’ve cut the list right down from its initial 106 titles.  I still plan to read the others some time and some of those are on the spin list.  If one of those is chosen, I’ll shift it to the ‘live’ list.  That probably makes sense to no one but me.  Never mind, I understand myself!  😀

Anyway, here’s my spin list – which seems to have arranged itself in a table.  I wish I knew how I did that!

1 East of Eden John Steinbeck
2 The Story of my Life Helen Keller
3 Howards End E M Forster
4 The Prophet Kahil Gibran
5 The Painted Veil W Somerset Maughan
6 A Tree Grows in Brooklyn Betty Smith
7 A Month in the Country J L Carr
8 The Tree of Man Patrick White
9 Letters from a Cornish Garden C C Vyvyan
10 Breakfast at Tiffanys Truman Capote
11 Imperial Earth Arthur C Clarke
12 Pollyanna Eleanor H Porter
13 Memoirs of a Fox-hunting Man Siegfried Sassoon
14 Tarka the Otter Henry Williamson
15 The Little Prince Antoine de Saint-Exupery
16 The Go-Between L P Hartley
17 Things Fall Apart Chinua Achebe
18 The Lost Girl D H Lawrence
19 The Sun also Rises Ernest Hemingway
20 Cold Comfort Farm Stella Gibbons

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59 thoughts on “Classics Club spin #20”

    1. Now that is one I’ve never considered. Maybe one for a future list! There are so many classics. Although I’ve read them on and off over the years, I’ve found having the classics club has really focused me much more. And it’s so flexible so I can change the list whenever. I’m hopeless at reviewing them but really, it’s the reading that’s important 🙂

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    1. Elizabeth, I have been saying I will read East of Eden for so long. I’ll be delighted if I get it as it will be the push I need to get started. The Lawrence is new to me too. It’s on my list because it won an award at the time of its publication, when book awards were still relatively few and far between. Yet it never seems to be mentioned these days. That intrigues me. I’m not a massive Lawrence fan though it’s a while since I read him so I may respond differently now. We’ll see – if it comes up!

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  1. This would be a challenge for me. I’ve read a good few of them, mainly some time ago. And most of the ones I haven’t, don’t appeal (Hemingway, I’m looking at you). I’ll be fascinated to know which one you end up reading first, and whether you enjoy it.

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    1. Yup, I feel like that about Hemingway. That’s why he’s on the list – I’ve never read anything by him and feel I should give him the benefit of the doubt at least until I’ve tried. That and the fact that I bought a job lot of his books – all sitting here glaring at me because they’ve been here for years untouched… I’m kind of hoping that he doesn’t come up though 😉

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  2. What a lovely spin list! I think Howards End, Cold Comfort Farm, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, The Painted Veil, and the Go-Between would all be perfect for spring. I hope you enjoy whichever book gets chosen!

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    1. Jessie, I hadn’t thought about this selection as being seasonal but you’re absolutely right. I’ll be happy with almost all of them, especially those you’ve mentioned. It’s an indulgent list: the only ones I really don’t fancy are Hemingway and Clarke – the latter being there because it was bought for me and thus I feel I must make the effort. I’ll be over to look at your list later. And we’ll find out which book on Monday 🙂

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  3. That’s a great list , you have a lot of really good ones there, I’ve read eight of them and some of the others I’ll put on my next CC list.

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  4. Fantastic list! I’ve read several of them and think that probably A Month in the Country was my favourite out of these, but The Painted Veil and Things Fall Apart are also excellent books. And I also loved The Little Prince – such a lovely little book.

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    1. I’ll be very happy with The Painted Veil, Margaret but this is an indulgent list so I’ll be happy with almost all of them. The Little Prince has consistently evaded me – who knows why! So it will be lovely to properly read and enjoy that one.

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  5. This is fun! I’ll look forward to learning which book gets chosen, and hope it’s one of the ones I’ve read and loved. I had to read The Little Prince in French in high school. It made the reading much more difficult for me but also more meaningful, I think.

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    1. Yes, I can imagine that, Kerry. Perhaps when I finally get to read it in English, I’ll try it in French while it’s fresh in my mind. I wonder if my French is still good enough!

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  6. What an interesting mix of titles and genres! I can’t say I’m familiar with many of these, apart from the odd TV adaptation and of course the authors are, by and large, not unknown…

    I’m not doing the spin this time, I regret I haven’t even finished the last one (Charlotte Brontë’s Shirley, which is still limping along). Anyway, good luck with whatever turns up! 🙂

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    1. Thank you! Yes, it’s a totally eclectic list almost entirely based on what I fancy reading right now. Hopefully I’ll finish it in time whatever ‘it’ turns out to be. Like you, I don’t always succeed!

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  7. That’s an interesting list with a good variety of books. I loved East of Eden and The Painted Veil, but there are a lot of authors on your list that I’ve never tried so I would like to hear more about those. I hope the spin gives you something you enjoy!

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    1. Almost every book this time around is one I really want to read, Helen, none of the ‘worthy’ reads that I feel I ought to catch up with even if I’m not keen. So I think I’ll enjoy whatever comes up 🙂

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  8. What a lovely list! There is a bit of everything on it. I’m intrigued by the idea of a ‘live’ list, do you sort your list into books that you’re really keen to read and others that you are ho-hum about? Pollyanna made me smile, Cold Comfort Farm is gorgeous and I’m thrilled to see The Tree of Man on your list. 🙂

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    1. Yes exactly that, Rose! Some I really want to read and others I feel that perhaps I should read. There’s a difference 😉 On this list I’ve been very self-indulgent! The Tree of Man is there thanks to you – and I shall read it in the next month or so regardless of whether it comes up. But if it does, so much the better!

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      1. I really, really hope that you love The Tree of Man. I’m also excited to learn if non-Australian readers have the same emotional experience to the story as I did. You’re right about the difference between the books on our lists which are there for pleasure and those that are because we feel we should read them. Even though I grumble, the ‘shoulds’ more often provide me with some learning or other, even if it’s a ‘never-again’ response!

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        1. I really hope I love it too. Fingers crossed! I agree about the ‘shoulds’. There have been some – mostly recently ‘The Bell Jar’ which I got for my last spin and which I most definitely didn’t expect to enjoy – which have been revelations and which I almost certainly would never have read but for the CC. There again, I have the Classics Club to thank for The Heart of Darkness…. 😖

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          1. You have my sympathy… The Tree of Man was a ‘should’ for me and so was Chekhov’s Five Plays, one was a pleasure and the other misery. I liked The Bell Jar too, but haven’t read The Heart of Darkness, sounds as if it is best avoided…

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          2. FictionFan loved Heart of Darkness if I remember rightly. Hence I keep thinking I must have missed something! So don’t discount it on my account 😀

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    1. Thanks Cleo 🙂 Both Tarka and Cold Comfort Farm will be first time reads for me. I’m always astonished by how certain books like these managed to pass me by for so many years!

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    1. Yes, it was a fellow countrywoman of yours who drew my attention to Tree of Man, Brona, and I’ll be very happy if that comes up. It sounds wonderful. Equally, I’d be happy with Sassoon. One of the joys of the Classics Club is the encouragement from other readers. Fox-hunting started out as something I was very wary about and others soon convinced me that it’s really worth reading. I’ve chosen such an indulgent list this time that whatever I get I’ll be happy!

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  9. I’ve only read two – The Go-Between, which I loved with a passion, and The Sun Also Rises, which irritated, infuriated and bored me until I suddenly found I’d accidentally loved it too! But I’ll be kind and hope you get The Go-Between… 😉

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    1. You know what, I’d be delighted to discover that I like Hemingway. I have a bunch of his books here – bought in a moment of madness and never opened 😀 Somehow I doubt it’s going to happen but I’ll remain open-minded. Meanwhile, I’m secretly hoping that we don’t get no. 19 😉

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      1. Oops! So sorry! But seriously, it is well worth reading, though sometimes it doesn’t feel that way. It’s left some indelible images in my mind – the bus journey to Pamplona (I think), the bull-fighting rituals which I found unexpectedly fascinating, the exploration of masculinity. I hope you enjoy it more than you anticipate. 😀

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        1. I’ll let you know 🙂 Perhaps it will turn my head and I’ll become an ardent Hemingway fan. I got The Bell Jar last year which I also didn’t want to read and actually I very much enjoyed it. So here’s hoping!

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  10. ” here’s my spin list – which seems to have arranged itself in a table. I wish I knew how I did that!”

    Hi, Sandra. Did you switch to the new WordPress block editor? I ask because I’ve been making the switch over the past several days. One of the changes I’m most excited about is the table block. I haven’t often needed a table, but whenever I did need one in the past, there was no good way to present the material on a blog. If you changed to the new editor, it might have decided that you wanted that list presented in a table.

    Anyway, thanks for liking my CC Spin post, because I’m so glad to have discovered your blog! I’ll be interested in what book you will read after the lucky number is chosen.

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    1. Hi Mary, thank you for dropping by 🙂 I haven’t knowingly switched; I know there have been changes and tell myself that I’ll look at them properly – when I have time… Somehow the time always seems better spent on something else! That said, I copied the list from an Excel file – something I’ve done before but in the past the formatting vanishes. This time it didn’t, which I’m very pleased about. So who knows! One quiet afternoon I’ll root around in WordPress!

      What I have made time for is to look in on both your blogs – I hadn’t realised there were two. A double bonus! Looking forward to both 🙂

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  11. A lovely list. It reminds me that I’ve still not read The Little Prince – really must remedy that. I read Cold Comfort Farm for a spin, about a year ago I believe, and I really enjoyed it – a true delight. Good luck!

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    1. I’m pleased to hear I’m not the only one who hasn’t read The Little Prince 🙂 With this list, I’ll be happy with whatever comes up; it’s particularly indulgent!

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  12. What book are you hoping to get? I see some good ones on your list, East of Eden is probably my favorite Steinbeck to date. I also really enjoyed A Tree Grows in Brooklyn a few months ago. I think I have A Painted Veil, picked it up from my second hand bookstore

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    1. I’ve been saying that I’d be happy with any of them but the spin number has been announced – and it gives me the one book I least wanted to get! Ah well! 😀 I’ll get to the others eventually!

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  13. I understand completely what you are saying. I keep a running list of books I might read in my Google Docs. Occasionally I shift a book from my active list to this list and add a title from the running list to the active list. That keep things fresh and doesn’t force me to read something that I really don’t want to read.

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    1. I’m glad it made sense to someone! I just popped over to your blog and note your lofty aspirations from this spin. 6 books is certainly doable and will make for a real sense of achievement. Meanwhile, I’ll grumble along with my Hemingway which will be quite enough achievement for me!

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  14. An interesting list, and how interesting to spin for a read! I find ‘Heart of Darkness’ fascinating by the way (even if now a bit overlaid by ‘Apocalypse Now’, but I have not been able to get my teeth into any other Conrad, unfortunately … I sympathize re the Hemmingway, but perhaps I need to drop my prejudices and read him now I am older?? Will be interested to hear how you find it

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    1. I occasionally tell myself I should re-read Heart of Darkness. It’s not that long and I think in part I was simply not prepared for it. But Hemingway will have to come first!

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    1. Memoirs of a Fox-Hunting Man is a book I was very unsure about and have encouraged so many times by others that I’m really keen to read it now. It wasn’t my spin pick though. This time it’s Hemmingway. Perhaps I’ll be pleasantly suprised 🙂

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