Back to Classics 2012 Challenge

Oh. My. Goodness. Am I excited for this challenge or what? The lovely Sarah from Sarah Reads Too Much is responsible for this gem of a challenge. Not only do I think it’ll be a huge help towards that bigger goal of my Armchair MA project, but I’m really feeling a pull towards the classics lately, so I think this challenge is right up my alley! I also really like having three different ‘types’ of challenges going on for 2012: one that’s more a read-a-long style, one that works within a specific set of categories, and one that pulls from a list of works and authors! I think that’s really going to help me figure out what works best for me – always a good discovery to make! Here’s the breakdown of how the challenge works:

  1. Challenge runs from January 1, 2012 through December 31, 2012.  Books started before January 1st do not count, and all links/reviews/comments for each category must be posted in the correct place by December 31st.  Feel free to join in at any time, but the end date is December 31.
  2. Please feel free to use books in this Challenge toward any other Challenge you may be participating in. However, you must read a different book for each category of this challenge.  Audio and e-books are allowed.
  3. Please sign up for the Challenge using the linky list (or comment section if you do not have a blog/website).  If you would be so kind, please spread the word about this challenge by creating a post on your blog/website and link back to this sign up page.
  4. Once the Challenge has begun, you will see a new bar on the left hand side of this blog.  This will list the places for you to link/comment your reviews of the book you have read for each category as well as a “wrap up” page.  I will not be doing monthly check-in posts this year.  I will probably do a “Half Way” post in June.  These will be important because….
  5. THERE IS A PRIZE THIS YEAR!  People who complete the challenge (and I will check that all categories are completed!) will be entered into a random drawing for $30 worth of books (Book Depository will be used for an International Winner).  I may have other prizes as well.  Make sure you are following me via GFC, Email,  Twitter, or Facebook/Networked Blogs so you are in the know!

So, here are the categories to work in, and the titles I’m thinking about using (brief refresher: these are the books I have in mind now. This in no way guarantees that these will be the books I actually read!):

  • Any 19th Century Classic: The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins, David Copperfield by Charles Dickens, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte


  • Any 20th Century Classic: One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Gone with the Wind by Margaret Mitchell, A Prayer for Owen Meany by John Irving
  • Reread a classic of your choice: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte


  • A Classic Play: The Crucible by Arthur Miller, Pygmalion by George Bernard Shaw, Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare
  • Classic Mystery/Horror/Crime Fiction: Dracula by Bram Stoker, The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole, The Mysteries of Udolpho by Ann Radcliffe


  • Classic Romance: Tristan and Isolde, Lady Chatterly’s Lover by D.H. Lawrence, Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier
  • Read a Classic that has been translated from its original language to your language: Les Misérables by Victor Hugo, Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy, The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende
  • Classic Award Winner: American Pastoral by Philip Roth (Pulitzer), The Optimist’s Daughter by Eudora Welty (Pulitzer), Midnight’s Children by Salman Rushdie (Booker)


  • Read a Classic set in a Country that you (realistically speaking) will not visit during your lifetime: Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden (Japan), Out of Africa by Isak Dinesan (Kenya), Schindler’s List by Thomas Keneally (Germany/Poland)

Well, there you have it – back up options and all! And, as always, PLEASE feel free to hop on board this wonderful challenge and pick up a classic for yourself!


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