Going for a spin

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Though under new (but still enthusiastic!) management, The Classics Club have announced another of their eagerly expected Classics Spins for August. A random number between 1 and 20 is generated and whatever is on my personal list is my selection for reading in that month.

I’m genetically programmed to be lazy so I’ve rustled up a previous list, and with appropriate replacements for titles already read these are they:

1. Apollonius: Jason and the Golden Fleece
2. Petronius Arbiter: The Satyricon
3. J M Barrie: Peter Pan
4. Edgar Rice Burroughs: The Return of Tarzan
5. Charlotte Bronte: Shirley
6. Frances Hodgson Burnett: A Little Princess
7. Frances Hodgson Burnett: The Secret Garden
8. Thomas Carlyle: Sartor Resartus
9. Anton Chekhov: Early Stories
10. Charles Dickens: Pictures from Italy
11. Charles Dickens: Oliver Twist
12. George Eliot: Middlemarch
13. Hermann Hesse: Steppenwolf
14. Charles Kingsley: Hypatia
15. Rudyard Kipling: Kim
16. D H Lawrence: The Princess and other stories
17. Niccolò Machiavelli: The Prince
18. Daphne du Maurier: Rebecca
19. George du Maurier: Trilby
20. L M Montgomery: Anne of Green Gables

The number generated will be announced on August 1st and hopefully I’ll have read and maybe even reviewed it before the end of the month. (That’ll be a tough call if it turns out to be Middlemarch or Sartor Resartus!)


Just seen that the spin is number 9: Anton Chekhov’s Early Stories.

I know a number of fellow bloggers who participate in the spin, so I’m looking forward to seeing their lists and final selection.

Numbers 2, 3, 11 and 15 will actually be rereads, but in most cases I will have first completed them many decades ago and so the details will have escaped my goldfish-level memory

16 thoughts on “Going for a spin

  1. Being lazy is apparently a characteristic of an intelligent person, so all the better 😉

    I’m glad to see I’ve read a few of the books from your list, so maybe my classical reading is not so bad after all.. I definitely need to read more Dickens though, thanks to Bookstooge 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m happy to accept your litmus test for intelligence, Ola, although it definitely sounds counterintuitive!

      Thanks for the mention of Bookstooge’s blog, looks interesting after just a cursory glance! I ought to read more Dickens, too, and not just the popular three or four titles everyone knows.

      Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Jessie, a bit heavy with male authors, I do know, but I’m trying to get through a backlog stretching back years. And I wasn’t into many female writers then but have since discovered how much I was missing! Gradually making up for it though, and looking forward to those titles you’ve picked out. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

  2. earthbalm

    Have to give a nod to Jessie here. Those are the four that jumped out at me too. Currently, I have a passion for the short stories of Angela Carter (not all though) and AS Byatt.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I started reading Carter’s Black Venus because it included a story set in New England, as part of a reading challenge and have always wanted to get back to it. I’ve read a couple of A S Byatt novels (not the Better known ones) but have to be in the mood for her dense period writing before wading in. I’m actually tempted to read Anne Brontë’s The Tenant of Wildfell Hall but will wait to see what tomorrow’s classics spin brings!

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Laurie, and you too! I did begin Hypatia a few years ago knowing, as you do, the story, but only got three or so chapters in. I knew I wanted to return to it but swapped over to Kingsley’s Westward Ho! knowing that period a little better at the time than Early Christian theological battles.


  3. The Secret Garden and Anne of Green Gables were two of my childhood favourites, but I have never read them as an adult and will be interested to hear your thoughts if you get one of those. I also love both Rebecca and Middlemarch. Good luck tomorrow!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I think all these titles you mention, Helen, eluded me in earlier years because they had ‘girly’ associations, which convention then dictated wouldn’t suit me. (But then spy novels and war stories didn’t appeal either.) It wasn’t until I noticed I particularly enjoyed fantasy novels that happened to be mostly by women (Susan Cooper, Ursula Le Guin, Diana Wynne Jones, E Nesbit etc) that I determined to try Austen, the Brontës, Carter et al and found what I had been missing all these years. Hence the massive catch-up I’ve been attempting recently!


  4. Nice list! I never knew Dickens wrote a travel book about Italy. Looks interesting and my library has it, too. I may even go downtown to look at their copy of the original 1846 edition, just for fun. Good luck with the spin! I hope you get #10 so I can read your review.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I picked up this copy not just because we love Italy but also because many years ago I enjoyed Mary McCarthy’s studies of Florence and Venice. Yes, let’s see what the spin throws up and if not No 10 I may still read and review this soon! 🙂


  5. Middlemarch took me a looong time to get through. I didn’t finish my last two spin books (Don Quixote and Invisible Man) by the deadline, though I decided the first half of DQ counted. Rebecca would be my vote for a quick and satisfying read you’re sure to finish within the month (or day). The children’s books are also lovely – did you notice you have a prince/princess theme going on?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No, I didn’t notice the regal strand, Lory, though I probably subconsciously registered the juxtaposition of the Lawrence and Machiavelli titles. Ironic, though, as I’m not a huge fan of some of the representatives of our Royal Family! Still, the Little Princess is not really one I gather, and Tarzan is only Lord Greystoke, a minor noble…

      Yes, I was wary of including Middlemarch because of its length. (And thank goodness I didn’t include Tristram Shandy in my list, for that very reason!) Anyway, I’m sure we’re all eagerly anticipating what number comes up. 😁

      Liked by 1 person

  6. That is a fun list. Middlemarch is long, but is great. Kim’s a fun read. I’ve been thinking about rereading Sartor Resartus myself–the Great Yes!

    I’ve got Rebecca on my spin list but in a different spot.

    We’ll find out tomorrow. Enjoy!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Reese, I’d hoped to have a bit of variety in there, from random titles I’d chosen from my shelves — so a few children’s books among the adult ones, short as well as longer novels, some non-fiction along with the fiction. Not long now to find out!


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