Books I don’t like that will end up as classics

*I think

**don’t stone me if I’m wrong

I’ve often discussed books that I think will end up as classics. Indeed, even talked about books that I would LOVE to get that moniker (but sadly don’t think it’s realistic). Yet recently I was thinking of all the books that end up in the classics section that I don’t like. Ergo, it stands to reason there’s going to be a fair number of books in the future that I really don’t like that are considered classics. I’m not sure that any of these will become classics (and goodness knows in some cases I’d really rather they didn’t) but here’s a few books that I think will end up on those shelves one day:

Conversations with Friends– if I’m feeling really pessimistic, then I’d say this’ll end up as a classic. God knows, some people think there’s something profound about the millennial ennui of the characters, their insipid ramblings and awful behaviour. But clearly, it’s going over well with the “right” sort of people, so what do I know?

Atonement– honestly, I’d really rather McEwan doesn’t end up in the classics’ section. I once went to a lecture where the professor praised him for his sense of chronology… and if that doesn’t tell you the levels of mediocrity I think his writing stoops to, I don’t know what will. Anyway, what was I saying about him being a future classic? Oh yeah, it’s probably going to happen. Because there are people (far more important than me and you) who think that he’s saying something profound with his writing. And I for one think that if it has to happen with any of his books, it ought to be Atonement, quite simply because it’s the best of a bad bunch. In theory, it has an interesting plot and characters (even if in actuality its rather a dry book that’s surpassed by its film adaptation).

Girl Woman Other– I’m going to struggle to say anything positive about this book, since I’m rather a fan of punctuation. Still, there are those who deem it an important and seminal work of literature… I think you’ll have to go find a review from one of those people if you want to know why it’ll probably end up as a classic. Also, it has a Booker Prize, so it’ll probably end up as a classic whether I care for it or not.

Handmaid’s Tale– this is perhaps the most meritorious of the books on this list. Particularly as Atwood is such a stellar writer. However, as I’ve made clear in other posts, I’ve no admiration for Atwood’s logic (or lack thereof) in her worldbuilding, so this will never be a favourite of mine. That said, I think that it certainly leads to thought-provoking discussion.

The Goldfinch– okay this is also not a bad book at all, just one I didn’t love. I strongly believe that the Secret History is Tartt’s masterpiece, BUT I can see the intrigue and deep characterisation in this book, even if I wasn’t bowled away by it. I definitely think that this could warrant being studied and pored over by future generations.

Okay, I think I managed to shake off some of my negativity towards the end of this post! Even if it was a tricky task!!

What do you think? Will these end up as classics? Do you agree or disagree with my sentiments? And do you have any books you hate that you reckon will become classics anyway? Let me know in the comments! Don’t be shy!

Books That I Think Will Be Future Classics #2

orangutan list

Alrighty then, it’s been a while since I’ve talked about books which I think will be future classics… so I thought I may as well go for round 2! And since I did a massive preamble in my previous post, I won’t bore you by repeating myself. All I’ll quickly say is that I’m going to (try) not just including books because I love them and try to pick books I genuinely think are worthy of study one day. I’m a little overcautious when it comes to that, which is why I leave out a lot of *maybes*. Anyhoo, let’s get into it!


Circe– this is as good as it gets when it comes to retellings- it’s perfect and as wonderful as reading classics from ancient sources.

bear and the nightingale

Bear and the Nightingale– speaking of exquisite mythological books, you can’t go wrong with Arden’s (future) classic.

the secret history

Secret History– I said it when I reviewed it and I’ll say it again (and again and again)- this is worth studying. Endlessly complex and the kind of book you can never quite move on from, Tartt’s book is nothing short of a masterpiece.

perks of being a wallflower

Perks of Being a Wallflower– I feel like I’m going to get a lot of “but it’s already a classic” for this one, so I should probably clarify that I think it’ll stand the test of time.

summer that melted everything

The Summer that Melted Everything– if nothing else, that writing is to *die for*.

book of hidden things 3

Book of Hidden Things– maybe we’re moving into wishful thinking territory, yet there’s something intensely seductive and powerful about this book.

going postal

Discworld– okay, yes, I broke the rules again, going for a personal fave- I’m a very naughty monkey! But I really think there’s a great argument to be made for Pratchett’s entire satirical works to become classics- I feel like they are the best fantasy parodies ever written (and the best we’re ever going to get!)

Well I think it’s safe to say I pretty much failed at choosing books for the right reasons… So, it’s time to turn the question over to you: do you agree with any of my picks? And which books do you think will be future classics? Let me know in the comments!

Books That I Think Will Be Future Classics

No doubt whatever I put on this list will be controversial for academics and bookworms alike. So I do want to clear some things up: I’m specifically going for “classics” in the academic sense, not “stand the test of time” books (there is, in my humble opinion, a difference). You’ll probably be able to note the books that I think are simply wonderful, but that don’t fit well enough into that category. This is a combination of books I personally admire and my own experience of the canon, not what I think the most popular books of our time are and I do hope people won’t be offended by what is/isn’t on here. And obviously, this doesn’t mean that I think I’ll be right, because who knows what the future holds? University students might very well end up studying Noddy in 2200 for all I know- at least I won’t be around to see it 😉 Without further ado, here are some books that I reckon *should*/*will be* the classics of the future:

The Book Thief– I hadn’t mentioned this book in ages… and now I’m mentioning it twice in a week- figures 😉 It is an *amazing*, inventive and emotional book. I definitely think this is the sort of book that would be worth delving into a little deeper, whether or not it does end up getting studied in the future- at least in schools surely!

Homegoing– a modern day epic, spanning centuries, it’s a remarkable piece of literature. With so many embedded themes and stunning writing, I’d be amazed if this didn’t end up on a university syllabus in the future.

Memoirs of a Geisha- Again, I’ve mentioned this recently, but I do think it’s a singularly striking story. I think this already has the label of “modern day classic”- but I don’t set much stock in that label. Most of the time it seems like a marketing ploy to be honest. However, when it comes to this book it’s pretty apt.

Never Let Me Go– yep, this also falls into that category of “modern day classic”- yet it’s fully deserving of that moniker. The writing, while unshowy, is very powerful and there’s a lot of fascinating themes about what it is to be human here. I certainly think it’s worth studying in greater depth.

A Thousand Splendid Suns– I know a lot of people would put the Kite Runner ahead of this- and I’ve no doubt that both will end up as future classics. The reason I put this ahead of Hosseini’s other books is quite simply because I love it so much!! Beyond the emotional depth, the writing is seductively beautiful and the story itself speaks to the human experience.

The Shadow of the Wind– I’m trying to not include books in translation, but I can’t help it with this one, because what a gem this book is! In any language, this book speaks to my soul and truly captures the essence of what it is to fall in love with stories. There’s so much here to admire- the characters, the multi-layered story and the wonderful writing. I certainly think there’s grounds for further exploration of its literary merit.

The Northern Lights– this could be hit or miss, because there’s a snob-value that goes into these decisions, and depending on the university, some do not see fantasy like the Hobbit or Lord of the Rings as a classic (they’re wrong, but whatever). Purely going on my own experience at a redbrick, this could be studied…

Neverwhere– again, I can’t say for certain that this will end up as a future classic- but it definitely deserves to be. Unlike a lot of the books on here, this isn’t my favourite by the author (though it’s wonderful), only I think this is the best example of all the symbolism and intrigue that Gaiman has to offer. I do know someone that did their dissertation partly on American Gods, so it’s not totally implausible as well.

There are a couple of other books that I’d like to put on here but I’m a bit more sceptical about whether they’d make it into the canon (even if I think they should). In the meantime, which books do you think will be future classic? Let me know in the comments!