Case in point: I have been chronically unable to finish Wuthering Heights. Seriously. The same goes for The Woman in White (due in large part to Collins' condescending treatment of women. It's hard to read and give your book The Finger simultaneously...) and much of Oscar Wilde. I should probably remedy this (in the same way I should remedy the fact that I've never read a Jane Austen novel despite being a twenty-six-year-old woman who majored in English). It will make me better read and well-rounded-- or at least, that's what I tell myself when I'm engaging in the literary equivalent of eating carrots. I hate carrots. Blergh.
Anyway, here's a tentative list of what I'd like to do:
- Finish Wuthering Heights and The Woman in White.
- Read The Picture of Dorian Gray
- Re-Read Heart of Darkness and throw in a viewing of the redux cut of Apocalypse Now
- Read Middlemarch by George Eliot
- Read something by Dickens I haven't read before (or in a long time)
- Re-Read Bram Stoker's Dracula
- Read Thackeray's Vanity Fair (even if it kills me)
- Read Jany Eyre (see above)
- Read something by Lewis Carroll I haven't read before.
- Re-read the more complicated Sherlock Holmes mysteries.
I'll leave the next five spots open.
I've decided to count re-reads in this list simply because it's been 10+ (sometimes 20+) years since I read some of these books the first time. I mean, come on, I was eleven when I read Dracula. and it's almost certain I wasn't capable of fully appreciating it at such a young age. The same applies to Dickens, Conan Doyle, Carroll, and the other authors I read as a kid. I'm sure some of them will be like new.
I'm really looking forward to reading Wilde. I've heard so many good things about him, but he was never really covered in any of the classes I took. I did read The Importance of Being Earnest in high school and enjoyed it, but I never got the chance to enjoy is prose. I'll probably throw in some early sci-fi (like R.L. Stevenson and H. G. Wells, even though they're not considered Victorians by some) and possibly a few volumes of poetry. I never did read much Swinburne back in the day, despite getting my fill of Tennyson, the Brownings, Kipling, and the Pre-Raphaelites. I may re-read Christina Rossetti, as she holds a special place in my heart.
I also have very pre-Raphaelite hair: long and wavy. Well, maybe moreso if I were blonde.
We'll see how this experiment goes.