Usually when I participate in a Top Ten Tuesday I follow the Broke and the Bookish. This week their theme is Top Ten Books You Struggled to Get Through (or Didn’t get through at all) and for me, this list would be nothing but books I hated. I tried to come up with books that I started and struggled with but then adored but I couldn’t really come up with enough to make a list. Still, check out that participants when you get a chance because some of the lists are amazing.
So, instead, I wanted to try the Top Five Tuesday from Shanah at Bionic Book Worm. Her theme is Top 5 Modern Classics and you should check out her list. For my purposes I am including books that were published after 1980 (the “modern” part) and that I think everyone should read (the “classic” part) So, here we go in no particular order!
#1 Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding, 1996.
I know what you must be thinking, really? But, think about it. This cute little story was the beginning of the chick lit movement which has evolved into booksellers finally understanding that women buy books – lots of books – and that we enjoy a variety of offerings (not just chick lit!). The book itself might be a piece of delightful fluff (I loved it) but it was a turning point for getting women published at a more competitive rate and that makes it a modern classic in my book.
#2 The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood, 1985. This is the modern marriage of A Scarlet Letter and Canterbury Tales. The fact that this book continues to be “rediscovered” every few years – and is soon to be a major motion picture – is a clear indication of a modern classic for me.
#3 The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver, 1998.
A white Christian man takes his family to post-colonial Africa and they are totally unprepared for anything. Watching the Father unsuccessfully attempt to change the Congo and the people to match his ideals would make this an important book. But when you consider that the story is told from the perspectives of the Mother and the four daughters, the book is given important social and gender commentary that takes a beautifully told story and makes it a modern classic.
#4 The Color Purple by Alice Walker, 1982
I don’t think this one needs any explanation. Frankly, I was shocked to find that it was published in 1982 as I had just considered it a plain-old classic.
#5 Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling, 1997.
Tell me, please!
Do you agree with my choices? Do you have any to add?