I know that as an author I'm supposed to have this deep affection for the classics. I should hang on every word of Shakespeare, Dickens and Verne. I should love musty old books with the pages falling out.
I admit; with the exception of a few modern classics I hate the classics. Shakespeare not only puts me to sleep but it also depresses me. I'm sorry, but coming from a girl in love--who wants their romance to end like "Romeo and Juliet"? I know it's a classic romance, but what a horrible ending!
Dickens is also depressing. Stories of poverty and cruelty which, honestly, seldom get THAT much better by the end! Also Dickens rambles far too much for me.
I also dislike Verne; I find his characters either boring or thoroughly disagreeable, which is a horrible combination and tends to distract me from his otherwise sorta interesting plots.
Now, that said, I do like old hardcovers, as long as they're not musty in the least. I hate musty/mildewy things. I like the thick paper and typeset they used to use tho. I have a good dozen books that are original printing, including "Magnificent Obsession", "The Secret Diary Of Doctor Hudson" and "The Robe" (all by Loyd C Douglas, yes, I like him) and "Enemy Brothers" by Constance Savery. I love my old books, but the pages are not falling out...I would find that maddening!
Despite this, as I mentioned before, there are a few modern 'classics' which I do enjoy.
"Brave New World" is a scary but fascinating read. Unlike its also-famous competitor, "1984", "Brave New World" deals with a futuristic society in which the people are slaves to this perfect and thoroughly enjoyable society. It's not dark. Not full of filth and unpleasantness. It's almost bright in it's outlook, though very sarcastic in its brightness.
I love "The Hitchhiker's Guide To The Galaxy" as well. I laughed through the whole book, a silly and utterly impractical sci-fi romp. The writing style is alternately ridiculous, random, witty and sarcastic. Other than being brilliantly written the book has little to no literary value, but I found it a very enjoyable read.
And my favorite classic ever; "The Time Traveler's Wife", a romance about a time traveler who finds himself saved from his self-destructive downward spiral by a girl who fell in love with him as a child when he came back in time to visit her after they were married. The book deals with raw love and passion, and I know that lots of people are quite offended by the sexuality of the novel, but I was impressed by the love and intimacy shared by these soulmates. I dare anyone who has even a little bit of romantic in them to read this book and tell me they don't want to be that close to their partner! Although these lovers fight, quite a lot in fact, their intimacy always proves as a way for them to forgive and forget. The book is honest, dealing with all the worst issues that arise in a marriage while still showing love and happiness. I ADORE that book! !!!
So what's your opinion on the classics? What is the reason for your love or hate of the classics? Do you have a favorite? Why do you love it so much?