Sunday, 9 September 2012

Guest Post: Top 5 'Classics' Everybody Should Read At Least Once by Helen from Beautifully Superfluous

Morning my lovely readers, hope you're all doing well! Today I have for you the third guest post and this one is rather close to my heart, books books books! The lovely Helen from Beautifully Superfluous is here to talk to you about her Top 5 Classic books that we should give a read! You should also give Helen's blog a look, it's one of my favourites even though I found it rather recently! Go have a look :) and now onto Helen! 

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Hi everyone I’m Helen. I’m a beauty blogger predominately but I also love my books (as I know Sia does as well). I prefer them to anything on TV the majority of the time. I think that too many people now neglect the written word in favour of easily digestible movie interpretations or television series.

I’ve compiled a list of my Top 5 books which (from a house filled with fact, fiction and everything in-between) was not the most simple of feats. I have one bookcase that is full and then piles and piles of books simply lying around the house. Still, these are the books that I think everyone should read at least once and I hope you all my recommendations.

This was the first book of its kind ever to be written and to be written by a woman was quite a startling thing in the 1800s. This is a ghost story that interweaves the theme of love, betrayal and fate. Everyone will have heard of Cathy and Heathcliff but to really understand the beautiful and haunting connection between these two characters pick up the book and turn the pages. You won’t be disappointed.

Forget Pride & Prejudice (a great book but over-exposed and studied to death); if you want some good chick-lit turn to Emma instead. The heroine is, quite obviously, Emma – a 21 year old girl whose misadventures into gossip and matters that really shouldn’t concern her land her in comic and endearing trials and tribulations. No matter what year this novel was written in it is still relatable to our modern day.

This was a classic book long before Victoria Beckham made it fashionable. It’s a tale that is told in hindsight with the narrator looking back through her childhood eyes as she learns that evil can take many forms when a black man from her hometown in the US Deep South is accused of rape. This book tackles childhood assumptions and the fact that prejudice can interfere with almost every aspect of a person’s life.

This is a book that I studied for my A/S Level English Literature. It’s a really entertaining page-turner that has established a modern-day classic status by infusing Shakespearean themes with contemporary references. Follow Dora and Nora, 75 year old twin sisters, as they recall their ancestry and life through the bawdy theatrical story that makes you laugh and gasp in disgust at roughly the same rate.

This is one of those books where the subject matter is a little uncomfortable. It’s about a pervert and a 12 year old girl. Stay with me though. There are many levels and dimensions to this book, not just the paedophilic side. There is a lot of savage humour and rich imagery which helps to set the scene for this tense and twisted world in which the characters interact. Put aside your assumptions about the topic in hand and focus on the beauty of the writing instead. There is a reason many great literary minds agree this is a book everyone should read and I agree with them.

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Thank you so much for this post Helen, I absolutely adored reading it! :)

Have you ever read any of these books? What is on your list of must read books?


  1. Here was me thinking that I'd have at least read one of these books... Thanks for the wake up call! :) I shall definitley be reading Wuthering Heights the next chance I get. And Emma. I have both of these books just haven't gotten around to reading them.

    Great post. I love a good book review. :) x

  2. I read Lolita when I was 13/14 it really creeped me out considering I was so close to the age of the girl :') Great post :) x

  3. To Kill A Mockingbird is such an amazing read, it's one of those books that you finish and are a bit sad that it did! I'm not usually a classics fan (sorry Jane Austin, I just can't get on board with you!), prefferring more modern books but I do love Steinbeck and I have a special leatherbound copy of Breakfast at Tiffany's (different ending to the film, which I much prefer!) which I hold close to my heart. I just wish I had more time to read adult books (The Very Hungry Catepillar gets old after the billionth time ;P) xo

  4. I've never been a Jane Austen fan - i'm much more of a Bronte girl with Jane Eyre being my favourite must read book.

  5. Okay, so maybe it's not such a 'classic' book. But I think The Hunger Games trilogy is a must read, they are insanely addictive books and the story is nothing like any other out there.

    Thanks for this top 5! I needed some new reading inspiration.

    Charlotte xo

  6. Thank you for allowing me to Guest Post for you Sia - I really enjoyed writing it xxx


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