My Classic Collection

This isn’t the best of all pictures, I know.  However, it does reveal my pitiful classic collection.  So far I’m reading Dante’s Divine Comedy aloud to my little sister, I finished The Prince and I’m working on Paradise Lost.  Next on my list to tackle is Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations and then Homer’s Iliad.

This is my personal collection and is rather misleading seeing as we have a lot of classic books in the family collection.  I haven’t really read many of them, mostly because the bulk of the reading I do now is YA for my blog, but I have been slowly working my way through all the classics everyone says you have to read.

I’m rather enjoying reading Dante aloud because right now we’re on the first book in The Divine Comedy, The Inferno, which is obviously the most famous one.  When read aloud, it is quite powerful poetry with a lot of heavy imagery.  The only problem is trying to explain to my little sister what the carnal sinners did…

Paradise Lost is apparently in the style of Homer’s epic poetry, so I can honestly say that I’m tackling The Iliad next because John Milton’s own epic is very good.  Both epic poems are on my ‘to read aloud’ list because I find I understand things better when I read aloud and my little sister does enjoy it when I read to her.

Marcus Aurelius’ Meditations are right up there because a) Marcus Aurelius was awesome and b) some parts of Stoicism appeal to me.  Hopefully this philosophy will prepare me for when I tackle Plato and Aristotle.

I hope to add Caesar’s Commentaries, Livy’s Ab Urbe Condita Libri, Tacitus’ Histories and Annals, Silius’ Punica, the works of Sophocles and many, many more to my collection some day.

So what classic books do you guys have?  And which ones do you hope to read?


    • Carrie Slager

      Did you read both The Iliad and The Odyssey by Homer? What did you think of them? And did you finish all three books in The Divine Comedy, or just The Inferno?

      • John Phillips

        Both Homers and all of the Divine Comedy. Dante gets kind of preachy (hah I made a pun) so it was a chore at times plugging along. It was a worthy read though. The Homer’s were terrific books,The Iliad more so than The Odyssey. I think they lose something in the translation I guess.

        • Carrie Slager

          Probably. And I can see where Dante got preachy, even though I’ve only read up to The Purgatorio on my own. I mean, the subject of his books is the ascent to heaven, so what do you expect?

          As for Homer’s works, I can see how things got lost in translation. It’s hard to get all of the subtleties of the language into English. I don’t read ancient Greek, but I know a bit of Italian and the beauty of arias in opera does get lost when you read the English translation. Ancient Greek would only compound this problem, being a dead language.

          • John Phillips

            Still very enjoyable. I have trouble reading new stuff though so when I read, I tend to go for the classic style or something quirky if new. I was an insatiable reader many years ago but lost some of that over the years. I enjoyed the Burroughs, Vernes and HG Wells of the world and kept that taste. Love checking out your reviews and keep an eye out for something I may like.

          • Carrie Slager

            I generally don’t read new poetry; I find that I don’t like the current freestyle trend unless it’s of exceptional quality. If you like HG Wells and Vernes, I’d have to recommend another classic in the sci-fi genre that’s one of my personal favourites: Earth Abides by George R. Stewart.

            Review here:

            I personally haven’t written a review yet, but this reviewer pretty much shares my thoughts on it, except I wasn’t annoyed about Ish’s “everyone is dumb” attitude.

            I’ll have my own review up soon, probably within a week if you’re interested.

  1. Cameo Nia (@cameothenovel1)

    Great review! [Rest of comment deleted for shameless self promotion and off-topicness. By the way, this was not a review. –CS.]

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