Often the ‘bookworms’ or the ‘literatis’ (as they prefer to go by) face the dilemma of choosing the books to read, while walking down the aisles of the stores or browsing through the e-books. We have got a list of classic must-read books sorted out for you!
1. Boule de Suif –
‘Boule de Suif’ is the legendary short story writer Guy de Maupassant’s first short story, which became famous. He mastered the genre, and is well-known for his depiction of human lives and destines in a sharp, and striking manner. Set in the background of a Franco-Prussian War, Bould de Suif, is a prostitute, who is fleeing from Rouen, along with nine other travelers. The plot revolves around their chronicles, as they try desperately to reach a safe haven. Guy de Maupassant portrays the hypocrisy and the shallow human nature very strikingly, through this short story.
2. 1984 –
One of the most significant novels of the 20th century, the Dystopian novel ‘1984’, has been translated into more than 65 languages, and millions of copies have been sold. George Orwell wrote about this fictional world, where ‘Big Brother’ was an omnipotent ruler, watching its every citizen, and invading their privacy. Several people felt that ‘1984’ may have been an extremely elaborate rambling, but it is highly relevant and relatable in the current scenario.
3. Scarlet Letter –
The popular author Nathaniel Hawthorne’s ‘Scarlet Letter’ is a novel, inspired by the string of real-life incidents, in the Puritan society. A psychological romance set in the mid 18th century, the plot revolves around the hypocritic society, where the priest committing adultery is looked upon as a messiah, and the woman committing adultery is punished for the life. With an interesting use of psychological tactics in the novels, it makes it to the list of ‘must-read’.
4. To Kill a Mockingbird –
Set during the era of Depression, where people are frantically grappling with the financial flux and an existential crisis, ‘To Kill a Mockingbird’ is an acclaimed novel by the legendary writer Harper Lee. The story is scripted around the curious case of racial discrimination and rape- where a ‘white’ man is set out to prove innocence of a ‘black’ guy, who is wrongly accused of rape.
5. The Great Gatsby –
One of the very famous novels, which was also made into a movie, ‘The Great Gatsby’ is a fantastically woven story by F. Scott Fitzgerald. The story contains an abundance of characters, all of whom are of prime importance, in their respective ways. The protagonist is the Gatsby, whose sole desire is to win back the love of his life, Daisy. The plot is intricately written around how the desires can lead down one towards the path of self-destruction.
6. Clockwork Orange –
A notoriously brilliant novel, which even inspired the legendary filmmaker Stanley Kubrick to make a movie upon! ‘Clockwork Orange’ was written by Anthony Burgess, who finished the novel in just three weeks. The novel follows the trials and tribulations of Alex; the word ‘immoral’ is too less of an adjective to describe him. Living in a futuristic society, Alex is enlisted in the ‘rehab’, which highlights the entire idea of the book- ‘free will’.
7. A Brief History of Time –
The legendary cosmology book written by the genius Stephen Hawking himself. This may be boring for many, but it is quite of an interesting read, for anyone who is curious to know more about the Universe we live in. Stephen Hawking has simplified his learnings and understandings of the Universe in a sheer concise manner. This had made the concept understandable for teens aspiring to study further, as well as for the middle-aged adults.
8. Animal Farm –
An allegory written by George Orwell, the plot revolves around the animals, who are fighting for their rights, as well as power. This leads to corruption as well as greed, naturally. Orwell wrote this dystopian, hard-hitting satirical novel, with ‘tongue-in-cheek’ humor, based on the Russian Revolution. The purpose of the novel is to clear out the myths of the Soviet Union, and to bring out the truth behind it to the public.
9. The Catcher in the Rye –
This makes into the list of the ‘banned books’. ‘The Catcher in the Rye’ has been challenged and banned numerous times, due to its profanity. J.D. Salinger has perfectly captured the struggles of a kid growing up. The recurring theme in the novel is the protection of the innocence, which is more often lost very instantaneously and quite early with the age.
10. Forrest Gump –
Written by Winston Groom, and made into a blockbuster movie later on, ‘Forrest Gump’, the story of the novel is quite different from that of the movie. The plot is based on the trials and tribulations of the protagonist of the Forrest Gump. He is apparently an ‘idiot’, but goes on to discover his abilities. He operates from a different level of genius altogether, making him a ‘sought after guy’.
11. Moby Dick –
Written by Herman Melville, the book gave us one of the most iconic lines of the literature, “Call me Ishmael”. Incidentally, this is also the opening line of the book. The story is narrated by Ishmael, the sailor on the ‘Pequod’ who is very much affectionate for the sea. The plot revolves around the voyage of the ‘Pequod’, and its captain, Ahab, who are pursuing the Sperm Whale. With narration done very beautifully, the book makes us feel a part of the voyage.
12. The Old Man and the Sea –
Written by the exemplary writer Ernest Hemingway, ‘The Old Man and the Sea’ contains ample of religious references. The story is based on the life of the old fisherman Santiago, who has been unable to fish since quite some time now. The story follows the battle of Santiago, with his own self, as well as the forthcomings of the life.
13. The Three Musketeers –
‘The Three Musketeers’ is written by one of the most revered writers in the history of literature, Alexandre Dumas. The story is quite heart-warming. The plot revolves around the friendship and devotion. This motivates them to align their forces, in order to defeat the evil. A wonderfully written classic, it also features in the ‘Must Read’ list.
These books are sure to set you up on the spree of reading classic literature, and kindle the love for it! Go on, immerse yourself, and ‘time-travel’ back centuries, and lose yourself in the stories!