Get out your reading lists and a pencil…


Because I’m about to add to those lists. Thanks to The Book Bench (the books section of The New Yorker magazine) and Random House’s twitter feed, I just skipped through a slideshow of books over at The Guardian that are now all on my “To-read” list.

Barbara Comyns, author of 'The Vet's Daughter'

There are modern books, and one from H.G. Wells, and lots in between. They’re calling them the “10 Best Neglected Literary Classics.” Interesting how so many of them feature young women living with dreary, oppressive old fathers, being crushed under the weight of duty and the general dullness of life. I can’t embed the slide show here, but go check it out, it’s short and sweet and definitely got some gems in there.

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17 thoughts on “Get out your reading lists and a pencil…

  1. I am not much of candid reader but if I was to read any of these book from the slide show it would be “The Wife and Blank Wall”. The Wife make me think that the book has juicy affair, lies, deceit by her wispering in the ears. Blank Wall look like that chick is hiding something and the guy want to get her…but what is she hiding and why do he want to get her.

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  2. Yes, “The Blank Wall” looks very noir! Sounds like fun. I am most intrigued by the Olivia Manning book, “School for Love.” Sounds like some intensely interesting character development in that one. “A Way of Life, Like Any Other” sounds kind of F. Scott Fitzgerald-ish, I’d like to pick that one up as well.

    It’s sad how many really good books get forgotten, it’s nice to see some of them being resurrected.

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  3. Many libraries have book sales, where you can pick up their old books for very little money. I don’t know what they do with the ones that don’t sell, though. I don’t know what their criteria is for keeping books, or when they decide to get rid of them.

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    1. Oh goodness, I just notice my copy paste. Please that, when I clicked enter it ask me to sign in. So I copy and pasted not to retype over. Anyway thanks for answering my curious mind. I am always wondering about something.

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    1. I’m only beginning to come to terms with the fact that I will never be able to read everything I want to, but I’m going to do my level best to squeeze in as many as possible!

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  4. Oh, so many sound good. I’ve jotted them down. I’ve heard of “Odd Women”, but haven’t read it.

    My first choice from the list would be, The Victorian Chaise Lounge.

    Others in no particular order: The Other Charlotte, Vet’s Doctor, Blank Wall, and Ann Veronica.

    Regarding Blank Wall, there was a lot of fine noir written by females, but unfortunately, except for a few notable names like Highsmith, they have been ignored and forgotten.

    Thanks so much for this link, DD.

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    1. I love finding these authors who have been neglected of late. I hadn’t heard of any of these books, and the only author of the ten I was familiar with was of course Wells. Enjoy! 🙂

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  5. Indeed interesting how common the theme of oppressed young women was in that book list. Maybe it was a very big issue 60-70 years ago; everyone knew someone who longed to break out from their oppressive parents.

    Have heard of The Victorian Chaise-Longue before and feel quite curious about it. 🙂

    Thanks for linking the slide show, some interesting titles there.

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  6. Hi Berit,

    I can understand the appeal of the story line featuring women in situations out of their control during those times. I’m sure there were many very frustrated women who would have loved to improve their situation in life without having to resort to marriage to do it. Not exactly ‘the good old days’ for women!

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