How do you define a classic book?
- Would you say that it must posess timeless qualities and appeal?
- That it addresses common problems or questions?
- Or illustrates the human condition in universal ways?
- Does it have a story that draws readers young and old, from past, present and future?
Dictionary.com defines classic as of the first or highest quality, class, or rank, serving as a standard, model, or guide.
We'd probably agree that classics are so defined. That said though, I think the selection is subjective. What one likes another may not. I've read a few I wanted to pitch, and others I'd consider as new additions. How about you?
Makes one wonder what Mark Twain was thinking when he said,
"'Classic'. A book which people praise and don't read."
Did he have specifics in mind? Would his opinion on the classics of his era be the same today?
A student recently asked me to recommend titles that illustrate good, classic language and style. The question comes from someone looking to improve fiction writing skills, and whose first language is not English. An admirable goal, as there are enough challenges writing in one's native language. What would you recommend?
In Other News
Congratulations to Heather Sunseri on the release of her YA book, Mindspeak! Wish you all the best, Heather! For more info, check it out on Amazon.
On February 18, L. Diane Wolfe joins us to talk about her new book, How to Publish and Promote Your Book Now! I'll be sharing my review of the book too.
I'm working on a few goodies to celebrate my fourth blogoversary in March. I'm thinking we need at least one giveaway. With chocolate of course. :)
So what do you think, do you agree with Mark Twain? Which books fall into your "classic" category? Are there any that you think are overrated?