Classic Literature for beginners😍
Our guest writer this week is Esther Hobbs. Esther did some work experience with us recently and is currently a student at a school in Kettering. We think you'll agree her recommendations are top notch!
Classic literature is full of the delights of the past - which is exactly what gives its charm. However, its language and topics are sometimes a little heavy and difficult to understand. Here are our top five accessible books to get you into classical literature without the need for a dictionary!
Little Women by Louisa May Alcott - a heartwarming novel set in 1860s Massachusetts about the March sisters - fiercely independent Jo, charming Meg, caring and benevolent Beth, and romantic and self-centred Amy. It follows their adventures as they navigate love, heartbreak, war, friendships, and the delights and hardships of womanhood.
The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett - this must-read novel tells the delightful story of Mary Lennox, who is sent away to live with a distant relative in a manor on the Yorkshire moors. It’s there that she begins to uncover the mysteries of the house and its inhabitants: the reclusive Mr Craven, the wailing in the night, and, of course, the secret garden. You’ll find it hard not to fall in love with Mary’s dry, witty charm and Hodgson Burnett’s delightful descriptions.
Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll - one of the most famous children’s books of all time, the novel introduces us to the delights of Wonderland told by the naive but loveable Alice, who describes her surroundings with a charming innocence. Its whimsical simplicity means it has remained loved by children and adults alike for generations.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë - in arguably one of the greatest pieces of feminist literature, Brontë tells the tale of Jane Eyre - of her journey from an abusive home to the recourse of school to a sprawling manor; of her captivating and explosive love with the Byronic Mr Rochester and the subsequent agonising heartbreak; and, above all, of her identity as a boldly independent woman taking control of her destiny. Though occasionally complex in its wording, the book remains easy to follow throughout, and is the perfect introduction to the wonders of the Brontë sisters.
Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen - we couldn’t finish this list without an Austen classic! Pride and Prejudice is one of our all-time favourite romance novels, and features some of the most iconic quotes in all of literature. It follows the romance of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr Darcy, alongside the various exploits and adventures of the other Bennets. Like Jane Eyre, its descriptions are relatively accessible (if sometimes a little wordy).