For a previous post I talked/rambled/gushed about a few favourite writers of mine, and which of their works I would advocate anyone to read. For this very similar post I’m going to talk/ramble/gush about which novels I have read (and nothing else by the author). And of course there are abundant novels out there, more than I can fit on this post without it becoming far too long, so here is just a sample:
Never Let Me Go – Kazuo Ishiguro
I found everything beautiful about this novel: the writing, the story, its depiction of Norfolk- to say it’s a novel involving harvesting organs. It’s a remarkable sci-fi novel in that it’s set in a quaint England, and is futuristic and yet has a historical, vintage feel to it. What grabbed me most was the idea of “donors”, and that the central characters accepted their fate, or their purpose, without question.
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
The only novel I have read by Emily Bronte because, well, she didn’t write anymore due to a tragically young death. I love Wuthering Heights partly because I feel it is a novel you cannot over analyse- no matter what there always seems to be many, many more things to say about it. With every reread you discover something new: a hidden meaning or character perspective to love it even more. It’s method of finding twisted beauty in the darkest areas of the human mind, I find to be an intoxicating read.Plus who can resist, (SPOILER ALERT) a Victorian horror about love so intense and passionate it destroys the lives of everyone involved- only to find redemption through another, more innocent and pure, love? (Victorian morale is always a great discussion point…)
1984 – George Orwell
The first dystopian fiction I have ever read, and one of the most iconic. I have read essays and lectures by Orwell thanks to my studies, but it is this novel that leaves me in awe of his intelligence to create a dystopian horror of a world. One that seems alarmingly possible not just when he wrote it, but even now. His writing left me feeling uncomfortable, as though I was being watched by Big Brother itself, and his explanation of ‘newspeak’ at the end is impressive writing as a stand alone piece.
To Kill A Mockingbird – Harper Lee
A novel many have read in Britian for their GCSE’s, but so profound anyone will fall for it. Similarly to Never Let Me Go it is a story with dark themes (in this case rape and racism), but the way in which the story is told allows it to be enjoyable to sink into. Using a child narrator with a voice mature enough to reach even adult readers is poignant in making this a classic novel to show how racism is not born with, but is injected into society.
Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis de Bernières
Lastly, this is an amazing piece of work set in the beautiful Greek island of Cephallonia during the Second World War. A novel so great and popular this Greek island is now a popular destination (my mum for example has fulfilled an ambition to visit after reading the novel). It is a great romantic novel in that it is popular without being sappy, and offers great insight into the difference between lust, infatuation, and love. “Love itself is what is left over, when being in love has burned away“.
I might a regular thing of talking about novels I personally think should be read by EVERYONE. There are a lot out there, a lot nestled on my bookshelf, and a lot I am yet to fall in love with.