Saturday, 21 March 2015

The Classics Tag

I saw this tag on Lianne's blog Eclectic Tales and I knew I'd have fun doing it! Thanks, Lianne! :)

An overhyped classic you didn't really like
I honestly haven't come across many classics that I haven't liked - that's one of the reasons why I love the classics so much! - but Homer's The Iliad really bothered me. About 80% of that book consists of people getting decimated on the battlefield and yet it still manages to be as boring as watching paint dry. And Hector, the one genuinely sympathetic character in the story, gets brutally slaughtered by that despicable Achilles :( URGH! That book really upset me and not in a good way if you know what I mean?

Favourite time period to read about
The 19th century, definitely. I love the Regency era because of Jane Austen but overall I prefer books from the Victorian side of that century.

Favourite fairy tale
Beauty and the Beast. The 1991 adaptation is my favourite Disney film and I'm really excited about the upcoming live-action version as well! :) 

What is the most embarrassing classic you haven't read yet?
Probably L.M. Montgomery's Anne of Green Gables. I will get round to it at some point though!

Top five classics you'd like to read soon
There are loads of classics that I still want to read but five books that I plan to read this year are:
  • The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton
  • Bleak House or Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
  • War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy
  • Les Liasions Dangereuses by Pierre Choderlos de Laclos
  • The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery 
Favourite modern book/series based on a classic
The BBC's Sherlock is my absolute number one favourite but I'm a huge fan of the webseries The Lizzie Bennet Diaries and Nothing Much To Do as well (which are based on Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing respectively).

Favourite movie version/TV series based on a classic
Oh, there are so many that I love! But my favourite movie version is Les Miserables (2012) which is based on the Victor Hugo novel. I love the stage version as well of course! My favourite TV series is North and South (2004) which is based on the Elizabeth Gaskell novel.

Worst classic to movie adaptation
Erm... the first one that came to mind is the 1998 adaptation of Les Miserables. I'm sure there are far, far worse adaptations out there but it's the first adaptation that came into my head.

Favourite editions you'd like to collect more classics from
Penguin and Vintage Classics usually do beautiful book covers :)

An underhyped classic I'd recommend to everyone
Anne Bronte's The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. That book has been overshadowed for far too long by Charlotte Bronte's Jane Eyre and Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights and it's a terrible shame. I think it's better than Wuthering Heights and every bit as good as Jane Eyre. It's a brilliantly-written book and deeply inspiring and passionate :)


Amanda said...

I'm glad to hear someone say something good (or something at all) about The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. I picked it up at a used bookstore last year without really knowing much about it, but I wanted to try one of the lesser-known works by the Brontes (and something by Anne). I haven't read it yet, but it's been looking at me sadly from my bookshelf for ages, and I hope to tackle it fairly soon. I too have strong negative feelings about Wuthering Heights. I'm all for romance and dark, brooding heroes, but that book was just creepy (and it probably didn't help that my edition was one of the ones that was repackaged to look like Twilight, with the black cover and the wilting rose and everything).

Hannah said...

Haha, since I've started blogging I've come across quite a few people who aren't Wuthering Heights fans but I actually really like that book. Definitely not to the same extent as Jane Eyre and The Tenant of Wildfell Hall but I am a fan. I don't actually like any of the characters in that book apart from Hareton but I love the atmosphere of the book and Emily Bronte's writing. When I read that book I *feel* that wind howling around me on the moors! And the structure of the book fascinates me. Nelly and Lockwood are both such unreliable narrators and I like to speculate on how much of the story is true and how much of it was made up or exaggerated by them. I know the story is completely made up but I think you'll know what I mean ;)

Lianne @ said...

I've been meaning to read The Tenant of Wildfell Hal; I heard great things about it. Don't know why it took me so long to get around to Anne Bronte's books...

Vintage classics have such gorgeous covers too! <3

Great answers! I enjoyed reading them :)

Amanda said...

Okay, I misinterpreted what you said about Wuthering Heights. Oops. I guess I just jumped at the opportunity to insult it. Sorry :) I certainly agree with what you said about not liking any of the characters, and for me, if I can't stand most of the characters, I usually have a hard time liking the other aspects of the book. Of course, I'm sure I'll reread it sometime in the future, because it is a classic and I'll definitely get something more out of it the second time around. The multiple narrators things really went right over my head when I read it, and I ought to pay more attention to it the second time around, because it's pretty unusual.

Hannah said...

If I think a fictional character is well-written and interesting then I won't usually mind if they're not likeable. There are certain fictional characters that I've loved reading about but I know I'd hate them in real-life. Macbeth and his wife for example...

Oh, Nelly and Lockwood are veeery unreliable! I mean, there's the fact that they can recall such lengthy conversations for one thing. How do we know that they weren't exaggerating or remembering things incorrectly or just plain making things up? At one point Lockwood mistakes a pile of dead rabbits for kittens and he thinks that Cathy Jr has a crush on him. He definitely strikes me as a man with an overactive imagination. And Nelly is constantly giving excuses for why she did or didn't do various things in the story and a lot of readers, including myself, think she was probably in love with Hindley. Personally I think it's all very fascinating! :D