Get the lowdown on the best fiction ever written. Over 230 of the world’s greatest novels are covered, from Quixote (1614) to Orhan Pamuk’s Snow (2002), with fascinating information about their plots and their authors – and suggestions for what to read next. The guide comes complete with recommendations of the best editions and translations for every genre from the most enticing crime and punishment tolove, sex, heroes and anti-heroes, not to mention all the classics of comedy and satire, horror and mystery and many other literary genres. With feature boxes on experimental novels, female novelists, short reviews of interesting film and TV adaptations, and information on how the novel began, this guide will point you to all the classic literature you’ll ever need.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Creating a guide to Classic Novels would seem to be an impossible task, yet Simon Mason has produced a superb book that reaches far and wide - and yet it wears its considerable learning lightly. It's a breathtaking book, truly, yet it never makes you feel overwhelmed. This has in great measure to do with the descriptive sections on the books, which are so engagingly written that they made me want to go out immediately and purchase the books, since it was clear I'd missed a lot of good stuff in my reading life.
The book is cleverly divided into themes, such as Love, Family, War and so on, and includes novels by non-English language writers. Next to each entry is a 'where to go next' and 'screen adaptations' section, both of which are hugely useful, and thoroughly intelligent.
I suspect that many people don't ever get to read the classics because they have no idea what they are. They get turned off by reading Dickens when they're eight and they assume that there...
It will remind you what was interesting about the novels you have read and might inspire you to read the novels you haven't. You can also elevate your cultural literacy with the savvy commentary.
I love booklists. It's an occupational disease: I'm both an avid reader and a bibliographer, and any volume that lists "the best books"--on any subject, fictional or non--is grist to my mill. This little pocket-size item, while not as comprehensive as Good Books, is unique in my experience. It's filled with mini-essays on "229 novels or sequences of novels" published 1604-2002, each offering a sketch of the plot, theme, and critical importance of the particular item under discussion, and each followed by a suggestion of "Where to Go Next" (as in The Prentice Hall Good Reading Guide, which it somewhat resembles) and, often, information about screen adaptations or recommended translations. The essays are intriguing and may very well...
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