This week Krysta and Briana at Pages Unbound are hosting the discussion: Do you have a favorite time period for classic literature?
DEFINITELY. As in, it’s not even a contest. I love Romantic literature. In particular I tend to enjoy French Romantic literature more than English, but as long as it isn’t Dickens I’ll read pretty much anything from the time period.
The Romantic era is a pretty big umbrella that covers a lot of different literary styles. It lasted from approximately 1790-1850. That means that both Jane Austen and the Bronte sisters are Romance authors, and they’re just about as different as they come. I’m sure I could google characteristics of the Romantic era, but I personally associate Romance novels with being long, melodramatic, and emotional. Some of the novels that epitomize Romantic literature for me are Jane Eyre, Les Miserables, and Great Expectations.
What I personally love about Romance novels is the feeling and emotion they are written with. Since mot of the classics I read in school were from the Romantic era or later, when I was first introduced to the Classical era through Tom Jones or Candide, I was surprised at how … aloof the novels seemed. In Romantic novels you get to really know the characters, their thoughts and feelings. This is taken to the nth degree by Charlotte Bronte in Jane Eyre when she wrote *gasp* in the first person.
Honestly I’m not feeling super celebratory this year. Over the top patriotism has bothered me for a while, but this year it feels especially off. We still ate apple pie and hotdogs, and we still went to fireworks (there is no such thing as a bad reason to set off safe, colorful explosives)*, but posting American flags made out of books on Instagram feels icky.
Still, since this year marks the 244th anniversary of signing of the document that started one of the more influential revolutions in history, I thought it might be fun to talk about some of my favorite books about revolutions. These are in no particular order. Half-assed listicles for the win!
*plus outside is apparently VERY low-risk of Covid spread, so I figured this was a good opportunity to get my kids out of the house for the first time in months
The Hunger Games Trilogy
Obviously! A good dystopia needs a good revolution, but my favorite thing about this revolution is how messy it is. Both sides are willing to do pretty terrible things in the name of victory, and in the end Katniss doles out justice on a whim. Nothing is black and white in this series, especially Katniss, which is what I think STILL separates this book from all the other YA dystopias out there. Plus the side-characters are SO COMPELLING!!!
Guys, I love Broadway. I completely missed my calling singing under the bright lights. What was I thinking, choosing band over choir and theater? *le sigh*
Unsurprisingly, many of my favorite musicals are based on books. Are you shocked? I know you’re shocked. So just in case you’re looking for something to listen to or something to read or BOTH, here are some of my favorite musicals based on novels.
Yes, novels. No, I’m not including Hamilton. Sorry, we can talk about that masterpiece another time.
5. West Side Story
It’s no secret that I love Romeo and Juliet, and West Side Story is just as powerful, if not more so. My bookish friends might not realize that I am a huge Leonard Bernstein fan. I thought about including Candide in this list, just to show off, but it’s really more of an opera, and who am I kidding? I just love the overture. (band nerd!) The amazing thing about West Side Story is that it is STILL so relevant! The racism, the gang violence, the music! If you’ve never watched the movie I highly recommend it, though be ready for some white people portraying POC.
Okay, confession, I’ve never watched the Great British Bake Off. I don’t actually enjoy cooking reality shows. *GASP!* I don’t know, if I can’t taste the food myself I don’t really care what the judges think. They’re strangely addicting though, aren’t they? I was at the doctor last week, and some c-list baking show was on, and I was so distracted from my book because even though it was stupid I couldn’t stop paying attention.
Anyway, thanks to The Orangutan Librarian for tagging me in this one! Even though I’ve never watched the show, I found the questions interesting.
I don’t technically know if Eragon even counts since it eventually got picked up by Knopf, but originally Paolini’s family created their own publishing “firm” just to publish Eragon. I adored Eragon in high school, because dragons. Even know, I don’t mind giving it a re-read from time to time, though I tend to ignore the sequels which are clearly less good. Continue reading “The Great British Bake Off Book Tag”→