• May’s Classic Literature

    It’s hard to believe that we’re already in the middle of 2020. Where did time go? And by the way…how are you doing? So much has happened since March. The days seemed to have blurred together, especially in April, and now we’re into the first week of May. This can only mean that it’s time for May’s classic literature choice.

    For this month, I chose J.D. Salinger’s Catcher in the Rye. You can see from the photo that my copy of the book is well loved… and well read.

    May is mental health month too, and I felt inspired to draw attention to this. I realize this book contains some sexual innuendos and vulgar language, *edit…there are no F-words but the character does swear using words like hell, crap, damn, which can be sensitive to a few readers. The core theme of the book is why I chose it. Mental health is important, ever more so during this pandemic.

    In Catcher in the Rye, the main character is Holden Caulfield, who suffers from PTSD. He takes the reader on a journey, allowing us snippets of his life, his backstory, until we eventually discover why he is suffering.

    Every time I read this classic, I always find myself pondering about how difficult it is to be a youth growing up, especially today with the growing pressures they face from social media. Imagine if adults are feeling pressure from social media, group think mentality, social acceptance etc, then you can imagine how greater the pressure it is for young adults.

  • April’s Classic Literature

    Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

    This was one of my favorite Hemingway classics. Anything from Hemingway is a classic, but A Farewell to Arms is a love story. A love story in the foreground of World War 1. Lieutenant Fredric Henry, an ambulance driver during the war, and an English nurse’s aide named Catherine Barkley.

    I usually love stories that push me to the edge of my seat, and this one does it for me, especially since I’m a stickler for certain historical fiction. Let me warn you though, that it’s a really sad love story. I don’t even know if I can honestly categorize it as a love story, especially if it doesn’t have a happy ending. I prefer happy endings!

    A little bit of background: The story is loosely based on Hemingway’s own military experience serving in the first war. Catherine Barkley was inspired by an actual nurse who took care of him in a Milan hospital after he was wounded.

    I won’t completely summarize what happens in the book (no cheating by looking it up on Google!) because I want you to read it. Just be prepared for the events that unfold between these two characters. That’s all I’m going to say.

    Happy April reading!

    XX K.

  • March Classic Book Club

    When I first read this classic novel written by George Eliot (pen name for Mary Anne Evans), I was a nineteen-year-old college student.

    Recently, I had the opportunity to reread this novel for a local book club that I belong to…and I still love this story.

    The two main plots of this classic novel are the life of Dorothea Brook and Tertius Lydgate. Dorothea is a young beautiful 19-year-old orphan. Her goal is to make something out of her life and expand her intellect. She’s drawn to a 45-year-old clergyman named Mr. Casaubon, who she believes to be a highly intellectual man. She ends up marrying him, despite her sister Celia’s advice. Then enter Casaubon’s cousin, Will Ladislaw, a student who is still trying to discover his life and career.

    And you guessed it, Dorothea and Will fall in love. Casaubon becomes jealous and here is where I won’t spoil the novel further. It’s such a great read!

    If you’ve never read this book, you should give it a try! Let me know what you think.