Brave New World In Our Messed Up World

As part of the Back to Classics Challenge, I chose to reread Brave New World by Aldous Huxley. I first read this novel in 8th grade at Columbia Grammar and Preparatory School in NYC, however, I do not think I fully grasped the ideas presented in the book at that age. I do remember feeling torn apart by the ideas of controlled destiny.

I grew up in a home where I was always fighting for control. I often felt that I needed my mother’s permission to simply exist. By high school, I longed for the freedom to be flawed. This battle had a devastating effect on me, and I spent much time withdrawn and creating drama where none existed just to have a reason to rage. Continue reading

Back to the Classics Update

My original post about this Back to the Classics challenge is on my now defunct personal blog, but all future updates will be here. It took me a while to finish  Brave New World as I had forgotten how intense the narrative is and how much it can drain me while reading. I love the book, but it is deep!

All books that have been read have been striked-through. Books that I am currently reading are in RED.

Here’s my list:

1.  A 19th Century Classic – The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane (CURRENTLY READING)

2.  A 20th Century Classic – The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner (CURRENTLY READING)

3.  A classic by a woman author – We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson (Completed: Review Here) Continue reading

30 “Classic” Must-Read Books

A friend’s post on Facebook sparked this blog post. I’m often surprised by how many people have not read novels that I thought were middle and high school staples. And I’m even more shocked by those people who have gone to college, and graduated from, college without having read Orwell’s “1984” or “The Handmaid’s Tale” by Margaret Atwood.

This list began as a top 10 list of my favorite classics and then morphed (after several edits) into this one. I am planning several follow-ups to this list because my personal list is too long. Continue reading

Book Review: We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson

Originally posted on

A Classic Written by a Woman

Admittedly, I am not a huge fan of Shirley Jackson. While I did enjoy “The Lottery” in the past, something about her writing has always bored me to tears. Maybe she is too descriptive? Is that possible? My vivid imagination prefers to do the work and weave the images in my mind. She gives me too much. At any rate, I’ve avoided reading anything by her since completing a book of her shorter works back in early 2000. I did choose  We Have Always Lived in the Castle for the Back to Classics Challenge after reading some positive reviews about it on GoodReads.

Continue reading