In December I was wandering around Borders and found a little orange box full of classic Penguin book covers.  You know, The Great Gatsby, The Odyssey, Wuthering Heights — that type of thing. So I bought the little orange box, took it home and decided to turn it into this: (thank you to the Framing Corner at Toowong).

Of the 28 books pictured, I’ve only read about a third if that … maybe a quarter. Who am I kidding? I’ve read two: The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (which I loved) and A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf.

Now I’ve just gotta work out where to hang the sucker.  I’m thinking in our dining room. Then my friends and I can sit around talking about how we are definitely going to read more of the classics … before we all go home  to our beds and read Twilight. Again.

(Actually I read Twilight and I was a bit “eh” about it.  Bella needs a personality transplant). Right? RIGHT? The books I most love to re-read are probably The Girl’s Guide to Hunting and Fishing by Melissa Bank and Brother of the More Famous Jack by Barbara Trapido.

Ava on the other hand is happy for me to read her Meg and Mog on loop.  Until I go just a little tiny bit mental.

Maybe this month I will attempt to read The Big Sleep.


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  1. Meaghan Douglas on January 17, 2010 at 2:48 pm

    Had a look at that picture with an increasing sense of doom as I scanned along each row of covers from left to right; no, no, no, no… OMG – I haven’t read any of these. I’ve seen a film of that one; does that count? No, no, no… What kind of reader am I? There’s not one I’ve- Wait. There! The last book on the last row. Yes. YES! I’ve read that one. I’ve read Wuthering Heights!

    Phew. 🙂

  2. becsparrow on January 18, 2010 at 5:23 am

    I hear you, M. I haven’t even read Wuthering Heights. Maybe we can start a support group and split the books up and create cheat-sheets for each title. Then next time I’m at a little soiree* I can see say, “Yes I was just reading Cake and Ale by W Somerset Maugham …” and then everyone will think I am very, very, very smart.

    Or not.

    Just have to work out how to pronounce Maugham.

    *clearly this is fantasy because I don’t leave the house these days. Well, I do but it’s to go to Woolies to buy nappies.

  3. bloowillbooks on January 19, 2010 at 2:34 pm

    I’ve read four of these and none of them were the fun sounding ones! Why didn’t anyone tell me there was a ‘classic’ called The Body In The Library? I’d have read that!

    As for Meg and Mog, My son is now eighteen (yes I was a child bride) and I can still recite his favourite book, “Cat Balloon” off by heart.

    Good luck with that!

    • becsparrow on January 19, 2010 at 3:31 pm

      “The Body in the Library” is about a mother who went looking for her sanity in the library only to have a pile of chewed, ripped, food-stained Meg and Mog books fall on her and crush her to death.

      Or maybe it’s about a woman who died at the Toowong Library waiting to use one of the free internet terminals …

      • bloowillbooks on January 20, 2010 at 2:20 pm

        LOL…the body in the library can be revived with caffeine?

        The four? Nineteen Eighty-Four, Wuthering Heights, Great Gatsby (read it right before I had to teach it!) and Lady Chatterly’s Lover, which I read as a young teen because I thought it might be juicy. I was wrong. I perused The Odyssey but found it both Odd and indecipherable. I don’t think I’m meant for classics!

  4. bloowillbooks on January 19, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Oh and I MEANT to say in the last post, what a fantastic and original idea!

    • becsparrow on January 19, 2010 at 3:31 pm

      Which four have you read?????

  5. Michelle Macwhirter on January 19, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    Hi Bec! Last year I bought two of the orange Penguin classics – Lady Chatterley’s Lover and The Picture of Dorian Gray. They are both sitting proudly on my bookshelf, in pristine condition, next to my dogeared copy of Twilight. I did try. But after a day with a baby, my brain can only cope with so much!

  6. becsparrow on January 20, 2010 at 8:26 am

    I hear ya, sister.

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About Bec

Over the past 25 years Rebecca Sparrow has earned a living as a travel writer, a television publicist, a marketing executive, a magazine editor, a TV scriptwriter, a radio producer, a newspaper columnist and as an author.

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