Category Archives: Classics


Betty Smith is best known for her novel A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I love that book but had no idea she’d written anything else until I happened upon an attractive copy of Maggie-Now at a used book sale. And, it turns out, … Continue reading

Posted in Classics | 2 Comments

The Sundial

When a book begins with a funeral with a man who died because his mother pushed him down the stairs, and everyone is totally matter-of-fact about it and not at all interested in consequences or fretful that this woman is … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 3 Comments

A Glass of Blessings

I haven’t read nearly enough Barbara Pym, I think. I loved Excellent Women when I read it years ago and quickly collected a few more of her books for my collection. And there they sat until I finally got around … Continue reading

Posted in Classics | 4 Comments


First published in Russia in 1921, We by Yevgeny Zamyatin is the literary ancestor of books like Brave New World by 1984. You have a totalitarian system, a regular dude within the system, a sexy lady, and rebellion that may or may not … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction, Speculative Fiction | 6 Comments

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight (and The Green Knight)

When I made plans earlier this week to go see The Green Knight, I thought it would be interesting to revisit the original 14th-century poem on which this movie is based. I’d read the poem in college (it was the first … Continue reading

Posted in Bookish films, Classics, Poetry | 5 Comments

Mansfield Park

Mansfield Park seems to be the Jane Austen novel that people don’t like much, and its heroine, Fanny Price, the heroine people don’t care much about (if they don’t actively dislike her). I have never considered it a favorite (that would … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 8 Comments

The Tortoise and the Hare

This 1954 novel by Elizabeth Jenkins focuses on the disastrous marriage of Imogen and Evelyn Gresham. Imogen is beautiful and amiable, but, it appears, kind of useless to everyone in her household. She tries, but when she does, she ends … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 6 Comments

The Emily Books

I read the L.M. Montgomery’s Anne books in college (having missed out on a lot of children’s classics as a kid). I enjoyed the first few books in the series, but Anne’s personality was a lot once she became an … Continue reading

Posted in Children's / YA Lit, Classics | 12 Comments

October 2020 in Review

I can’t quite believe we’re here at the end of October, just a few days away from the election we’ve been anticipating since November 9, 2016, and with no end to this pandemic in sight. I am cautiously optimistic about … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Contemporary, Fiction, Graphic Novels / Comics | 4 Comments

Our Mutual Friend

After the blah reading month I had in October, picking up a pick Victorian novel like Our Mutual Friend seemed like a potentially terrible idea. If I didn’t have the attention span to read and enjoy short contemporary novels, how … Continue reading

Posted in Classics, Fiction | 13 Comments