A few years ago I got the bug to read the "classics." Somehow I had gone through Junior High and High School and college without having read many great works of fiction that so many students before me had to read. So I started to read books that I knew many others had been forced to read. Here is a partial list of what I have read so far:
A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
The Metamorphosis, Franz Kafka
The Catcher in the Rye, J.D. Salinger
As I Lay Dying, William Faulkner
Crime and Punishment, Fyodor Dostoesky
Madame Bovary, Gustave Flaubert
The Dubliners, James Joyce
Some I have really liked, like A Tale Of Two Cities, and As I Lay Dying. Others I haven't liked as well, like Crime and Punishment, and Madame Bovary. However, it has been interesting to read these so-called great works of fiction and study a little about their authors and the historical frame of reference in which they were written.
Currently I am reading Great Expectations by Dickens. I am about 1/4 through and am really enjoying this particular story. I typically like to read a book first, then begin to delve into some critical assessments of how others have interpreted the work, as well as the study I mentioned before about the author and the writing of the book itself.
I have many books on my list of future reads. Here is a partial list:
The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Mark Twain
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Mark Twain
East of Eden, John Steinbeck
Also, I'd like to focus on the works of William Faulkner so I will include The Sound and The Fury, and Absalom, Absalom. Also I would like to read all of the works of C.S. Lewis. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe is a book I did read in school, but I would like to go back and read all of the works by this great author sometime. Both his nonfiction as well as fictional works hold a great deal of interest to me. C.S. Lewis is perhaps the greatest Christian writer, short of the inspired writers of the Bible itself. Which is why I have always been fascinated by the man and his writings.
Believe it or not, even reading classic works of fiction, I still find time for reading contemporary works, as well as a lot of nonfiction including the Bible, and technical articles and books as well. Reading is the greatest learning tool in human history, and it is a a shame that more people do not turn off their televisions and pick up a book.