Book Club Mom’s classic dream list TBR

I’ve read a lot of the classics, but I know I have many more to go. I will never read them all, but here are some I still want to read:


All Quiet on the Western Front by Erich Maria Remarque

East of Eden by John Steinbeck

For Whom the Bell Tolls by Ernest Hemingway

In Cold Blood by Truman Capote

The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry


Middlemarch by George Elliot

Mrs. Dalloway by Virginia Wolf

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray

Watership Down by Richard Adams


I’m going to have to fit these in! What classics are your favorites? What’s left on your list?

Thanks for visiting – come back soon!

28 thoughts on “Book Club Mom’s classic dream list TBR

  1. I was an English major and taught lit, so most of these are familiar authors. If I had to pick a favorite it would be Virginia Woolf. Her books are great, but an essay shines brighter in my mind than any particular book: I can’t remember the title, but it was a comparison/contrast piece on Westminster Abbey and St. Paul’s Cathedral. After a trip to London, her essay sparkled.

    This post really resonates, Barbara!

    1. Hi Marian – I was also an English major in college. I read a lot of Thomas Hardy and D. H. Lawrence, probably most of their books. But you have a special insight, having taught English. I do prefer fiction over essays, but I’ll look for the one you mentioned. I am looking forward to reading all of these. Thanks for stopping by!

  2. I have not read Middlemarch and there are a couple of Dickens and maybe one of the Bronte sister I have overlooked. I’ve always wanted to read The Art of War by Sun Tzu. My brain is exploding with all the possibilities. 🙂

    1. Oh, Noelle, you’re so right – my brain is also exploding. I’ve read one Dickens – A Tale of Two Cities which I thought was great. The Art of War would be a good one too. It’s so frequently referenced by readers and leaders. Thanks for stopping by – hope you are doing well!

      1. Ripping my hair out as I edit the last ten or so chapters of my historical novel before sending out query letters, copies to some historical fiction writing friends for their comments and my editor.
        I have read a lot of Dickens and have enjoyed and been enthralled by every book. He is the master!

      2. Yes, I would like to read another Dickens book. I feel like I should have done that in college, but I read other things. I read A Tale of Two Cities about 8 years ago when my son was reading it for English class in high school. I was so impressed with Dickens’ storytelling and how well the plot lines came together – complicated but worth the effort to read. Good luck with your editing – that’s the part that isn’t fun!

  3. Of those you listed, I’ve only read The Picture of Dorian Gray. My goal has always been to read at least one classic per year, but over the past few years, I’ve failed epically. Happy Reading, Barbara!

    1. It’s difficult to fit them in, Teri., so I understand what you are saying. I feel like my senses are flooded with new books, all the time. Even if I make a determined effort to read these 10, I think it would take me a year to get to all of them. Thanks for checking in – hope you’re doing well!

    1. Hi Jill – yes, that will be a chilling read – but I’ve heard from so many people how brilliant Capote’s writing is in it. I don’t usually go for violent true crime stories, but this will be an exception!

  4. Excellent choices. I think I’ve told you East of Eden gave me nightmares! I enjoyed Vanity Fair–I read it years ago in the Peace Corps. I also enjoyed All Quiet. I do intend to “re-read” (not that I really read much!) For Whom the Bell Tolls which was assigned in high school. At that time I loathed it, but have since fallen in love with Hemingway. Ah, Maturity!

  5. I’ve been working on a similar list — all those topics to read at some point in my life. 🙂 I’ve read East of Eden (ages ago), but really want to read The Grapes of Wrath this year. I recently read North and South with my book group (loved it), and I’ve read Vanity Fair in recent years too. I’m thinking of reading Dorian Gray soon as well. Good luck!

  6. What a great post, Barbara! I’ve talked about making time to read “the classics”, but I’m just trying to find time to eat right and shower. 😉 It’s tough to fit these in but there are a lot I’d like to. Also, they’re already sitting on my shelf making me feel guilty. Bah! (The Picture of Dorian Gray is a quick read–you could start there. And it’s good. Just saying.) Happy Reading!

    1. I know, Jeff. If I weren’t so busy lately, I’d tear through this list. But I will get to them eventually. Thanks for stopping by – I hope you are doing well and are settling in over there!

  7. That’s quite an interesting selection, Barbara. I’m not quite sure which classics I’d add to my list. I couldn’t take to Watership Down though. I’m not quite sure why but I didn’t like the anthropomorphism in it. I don’t mind it in other books though.

    1. Thank you, Robbie – I will definitely read these – you have to narrow things down a bit to make it happen so I think this list is manageable. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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