Literature Favorite Novels

But most books are fiction. Do you mean that you only like historical and biographical books?

I don't know that I'd say that most books are fiction, but the title of the thread is "favorite novels", and novels are fiction by definition. That doesn't make them necessarily less "true" than history or biography, however, in my opinion.

I agree with you that the author isn't holding Madame Bovary up as a model; it's just that I don't enjoy re-reading books about people I neither like nor admire. No offense was meant to the author and his amazing accomplishment. Favorite isn't always synonymous with greatest, or most influential. I listed Gone With The Wind, for example, which as literature isn't on the same level as many of the other books.

No offense was meant to you either, about the Dan Brown books. I was teasing, which apparently is difficult to convey in posts on a site like this.
 
Of Mice and Men, Steinbeck.

Animal Farm, Orwell

The Trial, Kafka

The Little Prince, Saint-Exupery

The Name of the Rose,
Eco

....

I did not hear any Brecht and Camus here so far ... I have not read them, but these names are very well known, don't you think?

 
Of Mice and Men, Steinbeck.

Animal Farm, Orwell

The Trial, Kafka

The Little Prince, Saint-Exupery

The Name of the Rose,
Eco

....

I did not hear any Brecht and Camus here so far ... I have not read them, but these names are very well known, don't you think?


I forgot about The Little Prince. That's a great book.

I never liked Brecht - I always thought his writing was immature and confusing. And I've always thought that it's unwise to embrace a political philosophy with religious fevour. And while I recognize the intellectual ability of Camus, I don't agree with his philosophy of life. I don't think life is absurd or meaningless, I don't think that all search for spiritual meaning is escapist (although the blind acceptance of the religious status quo is) and I don't think life is best lived with the belief that it's meaningless. And I don't really like the characters in his writings - when I was reading The Stranger for the first time, I kept wanting to kick the protagonist and tell him to stop being an idiot. Whenever I've re-read the book, I found that I still had the same reaction. Is this the reaction that Camus wants us to have? No, I think Camus wants us to identify with the protagonist as someone lost in a confusing and meaningless world, and I don't see things that way.
 
The Great Gatsby is my favorite novel that is written by an American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. In my opinon, it is a nice fiction novel!! Who read this novel?
 
The Great Gatsby is my favorite novel that is written by an American author F. Scott Fitzgerald. In my opinon, it is a nice fiction novel!! Who read this novel?

Yes, I've read it. It was required reading in my American Literature of the 20th century course. Interesting that it's your favorite book...I've always thought of it as a sort of quintessentially American book...an American fable really.

Have you seen the latest film version? I thinks it's been done five times.

Oh, and welcome, by the way. :)
 
Yes, I've read it. It was required reading in my American Literature of the 20th century course. Interesting that it's your favorite book...I've always thought of it as a sort of quintessentially American book...an American fable really.

Have you seen the latest film version? I thinks it's been done five times.

Oh, and welcome, by the way. :)

I think you're right in regarding that book as being somehow quintessentially American. I tried to read it several times, but just didn't understand it. I think The Great Gatsby is just one of those artifacts that make English speaking Canadians say "They seem so much like us in some ways, and yet ...".
 
I think you're right in regarding that book as being somehow quintessentially American. I tried to read it several times, but just didn't understand it. I think The Great Gatsby is just one of those artifacts that make English speaking Canadians say "They seem so much like us in some ways, and yet ...".

It really does have some insightful things to say about the "American dream" and what that means, and about some negative aspects of capitalism as it was developing, but while I think it's very well written in parts, I find that the characters are more "types" than fully rounded human beings (the characters' motivations are still opaque to me after reading it twice and seeing two film adaptations), and the symbolism is a bit heavy handed for my taste. That's why I called it a fable or a fairy tale. There are a lot of American critics who feel the same way, so perhaps Americans and English speaking Canadians aren't so far apart after all. :)

I'm probably more negative about his work than I should be because I know too much about Fitzgerald. A lot of sour grapes motivated that book because people he considered parvenus who were beneath him, or men who weren't as "cultivated" as he was made a whole lot more money than he did, and were a lot more successful. Also, the ideas for all his books, the "golden girl" character in all of them, and many of the events are just transcribed from his poor, mad wife's life. It's as if he consumed her...grist for the mill. The real woman wasn't given much care.

Of course, it can just be read and seen as a love story as well. It works much better on that level, in my opinion.

Ed. Oh, on your recommendation I read Alice Munro's Dance of the Happy Shades, and liked it very much. The setting and some of the behavior patterns may be different from those to which I'm accustomed, but it's a very universal story in many ways, and beautifully realized and written, in my opinion.
 
Charles Dickens A Tale of Two Cities, Charles Dickens Great Expectations, Charles Dickens Hard Times,Victor Hugo Les Miserables, Jane Austen Sense and Sensibility.
 
Tristram Shandy, Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights & Gawain and the Green Knight
 
[FONT=&quot] [/FONT][FONT=&quot]A Cry of Stone
by: Michael D. O' Brien

An edifying Catholic novel about a young Native American woman's life of vivacious charity and deep integrity as she deals with a variety of characters throughout her life from 1940-1973. Rose, the main character, is born into abject poverty on the Canadian prairies, abandoned by her parents immediately after her birth, suffers from severe scoliosis, raised by her frail grandmother, but due to the discerning eye of a motherly school teacher, discovers her precocious talent for drawing. Rose's artistic talent exposes her to the world's rapid social changes occurring throughout the 1960s. She maintains a strong, positive attitude in spite of the problems thrown into the plot from the self-involved people who enter and depart from her life. Her humped back, (caused by her severe scoliosis), and her child-like goodness cause some people to find her revolting while other people look at her with compassion. Thankfully all is not doom and gloom, Rose meets many people who, like herself, also possess a wise and unassuming spirit. These good and gentle people help her deal with her various struggles. Rose never allows self-pity to crush her spirit, but at the same time, she's not insipid. She does question why God allows her to suffer so much, but she believes that God sees the full picture while, even with her limited spiritual vision, she firmly trusts in His Providence. She deals with a continual, painful spiritual stripping in her life, but remains close to God in prayer. Her tender encounter with a little mute boy named Jimmy Doe in a special ward within a hospital for abandoned special needs children and adults brought a few tears of joy to my eyes as she (and I) were powerfully reminded of God's infinite love for His children. I was so impressed with this scene that I immediately read it aloud to my wife.

This is a character-driven novel and not a fast-paced plot-driven novel. It's over 800 pages, but I deeply enjoyed it. I have read many well-written books in my lifetime, but I have never gotten emotionally involved with any characters as I did with little Rose. I remember feeling slightly blue as the novel's denouement approached. I wanted Rose's global travels to continue thus allowing her to remind many people that they are tenderly and intimately loved by God. I re-read this book every couple of years. It always leaves my enlightened and reminded that there are no accidents with God. About it I write at my blog, check it[/FONT]
 
1984 -George Orwell[emoji7]


Sent from my iPhone using Eupedia Forum
 
I tend toward the short story and poetry, but as far as novels go --

Tolstoy - War and Peace, Anna Karenina
Steinbeck - Grapes of Wrath
Dostoevsky - The Brothers Karamazov
Bronte - Wuthering Heights
Hugo - Les Miserables
 
The Cat in the Hat
 
So many books, so hard to choose.

I liked the book London by Edward Rutherfurd. It's a Michener type novel about the development of London through the eyes of the descendants of one family.

And Sacajawea by Anna Lee Waldo (who was sued for plagarism but still is a good book)
 
La colmena - Camilo José Cela
Crónica de una muerte anunciada - Gabriel García Márquez
El amante de lady Chatterley - David Herbert Lawrence
Los miserables - Víctor Hugo
La metamorfosis - Franz Kafka
Don Quijote de la Mancha. Miguel de Cervantes
Trópico de Cáncer. Henry Miller
La familia de Pascual Duarte - Camilo José Cela
Historia de O - Pauline Rèage
Eloísa está debajo de un almendro - Enrique Jardiel Poncela
El diario de Anne Frank - Anne Frank
Al Este del Edén - John Steinbeck
Claudio, el Dios y su esposa Messalina - Robert Graves
Yerma - Federico García Lorca
Platero y yo - Juan Ramón Jiménez
Crimen y castigo - Fiódor Dostoiesvski

(The titles are in Spanish because I read in Spanish, in English I imagine they will be the same)
So suddenly these would be my favorite among many others, highlighting as my most favorite: Crime and punishment
 
Herman Hesse is definitively up there: Steppen Wolf, Damien (which you mentioned).

Coelho's the Alchemist is a very easy read, and feels much like a fable.

I would recommend existentialist novels, L'Etranger is a good start into the genre.

Also Kafka is a pretty engaging, yet draining to read. Would recommend his short stories, rather than jumping straight in the Metamorphosis.

If looking for classics Faust, The Iliad, Dante's Inferno, Paradise Lost in no particular order.

As for relatively underrated imo... with Stefan Cveig's novels you can rarely go wrong.
 
Esperando a Godot - Samuel Beckett
El Principito - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
Edipo Rey - Sófocles
Fortunata y Jacinta - Benito Pérez Galdós
Cañas y Barro - Vicente Blasco Ibáñez
La Barraca - Vicente Blasco Ibáñez
Un enemigo del pueblo - Henrik Ibsen
Juanita la larga - Juan Valera
El hechicero - Vladimir Nabokov
La ciudad y los perros - Mario Vargas Llosa

I have remembered these other titles.
 
La colmena - Camilo José Cela
Crónica de una muerte anunciada - Gabriel García Márquez
El amante de lady Chatterley - David Herbert Lawrence
Los miserables - Víctor Hugo
La metamorfosis - Franz Kafka
Don Quijote de la Mancha. Miguel de Cervantes
Trópico de Cáncer. Henry Miller
La familia de Pascual Duarte - Camilo José Cela
Historia de O - Pauline Rèage
Eloísa está debajo de un almendro - Enrique Jardiel Poncela
El diario de Anne Frank - Anne Frank
Al Este del Edén - John Steinbeck
Claudio, el Dios y su esposa Messalina - Robert Graves
Yerma
- Federico García Lorca
Platero y yo - Juan Ramón Jiménez
Crimen y castigo - Fiódor Dostoiesvski
(The titles are in Spanish because I read in Spanish, in English I imagine they will be the same)
So suddenly these would be my favorite among many others, highlighting as my most favorite: Crime and punishment

I've read and enjoyed the ones I highlighted, especially the Marquez and Crime and Punishment.
I'll put the others on my try list.:)
 

This thread has been viewed 27201 times.

Back
Top