Classic Remarks – Holiday Reads

classic-remarks-1

Happy Friday, everyone! It’s time for Classic Remarks, hosted by Pages Unbound!

I haven’t participated in this for a few months but thought it was time to jump back into it!

This week’s topic: Recommend a classic you think should be read during the holiday season.

The-Snowy-Day

For kids, I’m going to recommend The Snow Day by Ezra Jack Keats – I loved this Caldecott Medal winner as a kid! The illustrations are story are both very simple and I think it’s a great picture book for kids during the winter months.

holidays on ice

For adults I‘m going with Holiday’s on Ice by David Sedaris – This may not technically be a classic but the first time I heard “six to eight black men” I laughed so hard I cried. If you can get this (or any of his titles) as an audio book I highly recommend it – his delivery makes the stories that much funnier.

What are your favorite books to read during the holiday season?

Classic Remarks – Children’s Classics

classic-remarks-1

It’s Friday (yay!) Today’s Classic Remarks topic: What children’s classic couldn’t you read enough when you were growing up?

When I was in elementary school I could not get enough of Dr. Seuss! I would bring home Dr. Seuss books from the school library on a regular basis to read with my mom.  After a while I think she got tired of being tongue tied and suggested I try another author. So I started bringing home Roald Dahl books instead (so much for not being tongue tied!)

So I’ll say The Lorax and The BFG were my favorites when I was really young. Here are two quotes from each:

The Lorax: I am the Lorax. I speak for the trees. I speak for the trees, for the trees have no tongues.

The BFG: “Words,” he said, “is oh such a twitch-tickling problem to me all my life.”

What was your favorite classic children’s book as a kid?

Classic Remarks – Jane Austen Adaptation

classic-remarks-1

It’s Classic Remarks time! Anyone can participate – check out Pages Unbound to see the 2016 topics!

This week’s topic: Which Austen adaptation is your favorite and why?

This is a hard one! I really like Jane Austen and I love Austen film adaptations! I’m going to list three because that’s as far as I can narrow it down (there are many others I enjoy that are not on this list!)

pride and prejudice

  1. Pride & Prejudice with Kiera Knightly and Matthew Macfadyen – I expect to see the P&P miniseries starring Jennifer Ehle and Colin Firth on many bloggers lists, and rightly so. There is something about this version, though, that I can’t get enough of. I love it!

 sense-and-sensibility

  1. Sense & Sensibility – The cast is amazing and the film is so well done. You can’t go wrong with Kate Winslet, Alan Rickman, Emma Thompson, and Hugh Grant!

 Dalibor Milosevic

  1. Emma with Gwyneth Paltrow – I’m not the biggest fan of Paltrow’s acting for some reason but she really nails it as Emma. I remember seeing this in the theater and wanting to own it immediately!

And I’m going to give an honorary mention to Clueless, which is a loosely based adaptation of Emma, because it’s hilarious.

Your turn – what is your favorite Jane Austen film adaptation?

Classic Remarks – Diverse Classics

classic-remarks-1

Happy Friday!  It’s Classic Remarks time! Check out Pages Unbound to see the rest of the 2016 topics!

This week’s topic: Recommend a diverse classic. Or you can argue that a diverse book should be a classic or should be included in the canon.

As an English Literature major, I had the opportunity to take some really interesting classes including African American Literature, Native American Literature, Language & Culture, etc. So I’m going to list three titles that I really enjoyed that are already classics or will be one day (maybe)! Here we go…

invisible-man

Invisible Man by Ralph Emerson: This won the National Book Award for Fiction in 1953 and rightfully so.

First published in 1952 and immediately hailed as a masterpiece, Invisible Man is one of those rare novels that have changed the shape of American literature. For not only does Ralph Ellison’s nightmare journey across the racial divide tell unparalleled truths about the nature of bigotry and its effects on the minds of both victims and perpetrators, it gives us an entirely new model of what a novel can be.

As he journeys from the Deep South to the streets and basements of Harlem, from a horrifying “battle royal” where black men are reduced to fighting animals, to a Communist rally where they are elevated to the status of trophies, Ralph Ellison’s nameless protagonist ushers readers into a parallel universe that throws our own into harsh and even hilarious relief. Suspenseful and sardonic, narrated in a voice that takes in the symphonic range of the American language, black and white, Invisible Man is one of the most audacious and dazzling novels of our century.

love medicine

Love Medicine by Louise Erdrich: If I recall correctly, we read 4-5 of Erdrich’s titles in the Lit course I was taking and I really would recommend them all. Love Medicine won numerous awards and is Erdrich’s first novel so it’s a good place to start!

It is the unforgettable saga of two families and how their destinies intertwine over the course of fifty years on and around a North Dakota reservation. Here is the book that heralded the arrival of a major voice in American literature.

waiting-by-ha-jin

Waiting by Ha Jin: This book was very popular when it released and won a National Book Award though I’m not sure it’s considered a classic at this point?

Every summer Lin Kong, a doctor in the Chinese Army, returns to his village to end his loveless marriage with the humble and touchingly loyal Shuyu. But each time Lin must return to the city to tell Manna Wu, the educated, modern nurse he loves, that they will have to postpone their engagement once again. Caught between conflicting claims of these two utterly different women and trapped by a culture in which adultery can ruin lives and careers, Lin has been waiting for eighteen years. This year, he promises, will be different.

And I also highly recommend anything by Khaled Hosseini. I didn’t read him in my Lit classes but his books are amazing.

Which diverse classic (or should-be classic) novel would you recommend?

I hope you all enjoy your long weekend!

Classic Remarks – March Sisters

 classic-remarks-1

Happy Friday! I’m excited to start participating in a new Friday meme by Pages Unbound called Classic Remarks! Here is the description:

Classic Remarks is meme that poses questions each Friday about classic literature and asks participants to engage in ongoing discussions surrounding not only themes in the novels but also questions about canon formation, the “timelessness” of literature, and modes of interpretation. 

This started in July so I’m a little late to the game but that’s alright! Topics for the entire year have been posted to check out the page to join in the fun!

This week’s question: Which March sister from Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women is your favorite and why? Do you agree with the way their lives played out?

little women

Jo is definitely my favorite March sister – I even had a cat named after her when I was younger! When I read this book as a teenager, I loved that Jo was intelligent, creative, and spoke her mind. And she loved reading and writing 🙂 My least favorite sister is definitely Amy (did anyone pick Amy as their favorite?)

As far as how Jo’s life played out I, of course, wanted her to marry Laurie. I came across an article on Mental Floss about Little Women  and found tidbit #6 particularly interesting:

Alcott, who never married herself, wanted Jo to remain unmarried too. But while she was working on the second half of Little Women, fans were clamoring for Jo to marry the boy next door, Laurie. Alcott wrote in her journal, “Girls write to ask who the little women marry, as if that was the only aim and end of a woman’s life. I won’t marry Jo to Laurie to please anyone.”

As a compromise—or to spite her fans—Alcott married Jo to the decidedly unromantic Professor Bhaer. Laurie ends up with Amy.

Who is your favorite March sister?