Update on Me and The Classics Club Spin #29

Medical problems have kept me out of the blogosphere. My trifecta of chronic problems reared their ugly heads in unison and I have been down for the count-the bones in my left foot are deteriorating and the pain is excruciating, my scoliosis is getting worse, and I am being treated for my 7th skin cancer. Concentrating on writing has been difficult, which is frustrating as I was on a blogging run before this all went down. Nothing is curable, but all are treatable. And this is the first basal cell carcinoma that I have not had to have surgery for as it was caught in the superficial stage, which is amazing as I have the scars to prove the other 6, but the treatment-a topical skin cancer protocol-keeps me out of the sun for 6 weeks. Yikes….

But what got me up and into my desk chair? The Classic Club Spin! I had many false starts in previous years only completing a few, but I completed the last one on time and I didn’t want to end the winning streak 🙂 So here goes, with my list.

In case anyone reading this doesn’t know what a Spin is or the Classics Club go here for more information. Basically, once you have your list of classics you choose 20 and number them in a list. The Spin gods will choose a number on March 20th and you will read the book that corresponds with that number and post a review by April 30th. Ooo, that’s very doable…and I’m talkin’ to you, Laurie.

I decided to put some of my chunksters on this list since we have a long time to read. My preferred choices are Little Dorrit, Vanity Fair or Madame Bovary. Good luck to everyone participating!

Willa Cather
1. My Antonia (1918)
2. Death Comes for the Archbishop (1927)

Clarence Day
3. Life with Father (1935)

Charles Dickens
4. Bleak House (1852)
5. Little Dorrit (1857)


Fyodor Dostoevsky
6. The Brothers Karamazov (1880)

George Eliot
7. The Mill on the Floss (1860)

Gustave Flaubert
8. Madame Bovary (1856)

Elizabeth Gaskell
9. Mary Barton (1848)
10. North and South (1854)

Eleanor Gates
11. Poor Little Rich Girl (1912)

George Gissing
12. The Odd Women (1893) K

William Dean Howells
13. The Rise of Silas Lapham (1884)

George Meredith
14. The Egoist (1879)
15. Richard Feverel (1859)
16. Diana of the Crossways (1885)

L.M. Montgomery
17. Emily of New Moon (1923)

Edith Nesbit
18. The Railway Children (1906)

Sir Walter Scott
19. Ivanhoe (1819)

William Thackeray 
20. Vanity Fair (1847)

35 thoughts on “Update on Me and The Classics Club Spin #29

  1. Here’s hoping that the spin brings you all sorts of good things! Focus and good reading.

    Lovely list with lots of great things. Bleak House is a particular favorite of mine. I’ve got a Cather on my list but a different one: A Lost Lady. I’ve read both of yours and liked them, especially Death Comes for the Archbishop.

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  2. Good luck on the spin! I’ve read 5 of the titles you have listed (6, 11, 17, 18, 19) and a couple are also on my TBR. I really want to read North and South again. I love the BBC mini-series starring Richard Armitage and had seen it many times before actually reading the book. I was not as impressed with the book when I finally read it but really think I should read it again. It’s on my Classics Club list under my re-reads category. 🙂

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    1. It’s interesting what you say about North and South. I have dnfed it in the past. I so loved Wives and Daughters, so I started this one soon after and didn’t like it. However, I am determined to give it another try now that it’s been over year. I wonder if watching a production would help?

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      1. I’ve wondered if having watched the BBC mini-series before reading it is what contributed to me not liking the book as much. I love the mini-series! In fact, love it so much that I bought it on DVD and have watched it many times. When you watch the series, the way Mr. Thornton and Margaret Hale are portrayed there vs. the book felt different. It felt like the movie portrayed them as much stronger characters, especially Margaret. I remember feeling like Margaret’s character in the book seemed more….ummm…..whiney maybe? That may not be the right word. But just not as strong as the movie portrayal. It’s been quite a while since I read the book though. That’s why I want to read it again.

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  3. I join everyone else in sending good thoughts your way, Laurie, for the spin as well as your health. As a longtime cyclist in NYC, I can certainly vouch for the pleasure to be found on two-wheel journeys, whether short or long.

    I’ll also add my name to the Vanity Fair fan-list, but Life with Father is even funnier. (William Powell plays the father in the film — truly marvelous.)

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    1. I rediscovered bike riding early in 2020 when I knew my activity level would be less with the social isolation. And I loved it. But I have an old 10 speed and it began to hurt my back being hunched over. I am just starting to look for a new bike so I can sit up straight and the prospect is very fun!

      Ha, I have seen so many classic films that I don’t even realize are based on books. Like this one, which surprised me when I saw at the library bookstore!

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  4. I’m going to say Vanity Fair as well, if we all say it together it might come true! It is long but it’s absorbing from the beginning, but you have some of my favourite books on your list,The Mill on the Floss and Bleak House for starters, so hopefully you’ll have a good read whatever happens. The Classics Club spins seem to come along at just the right moment don’t they, I’m glad it’s happened when you needed it and send you lots of best wishes.

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  5. I can’t imagine how awful it is to have all these ailments hanging sword like over you, but I do hope whatever you get for your spin helps to alleviate things, or at least prove a worthwhile distraction.

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    1. One of the new developments regarding my foot is that I just found out the bones have compressed all the way down to the bottom of my foot, so there won’t be anymore changes. Though this is permanent at least I now know what I am dealing with. I will just become a cane-wielding old lady a

      Liked by 1 person

      1. I recommend a silver-tipped cane or one with a goose head as a stylish accessory, or better still a sword stick so nobody messes with you! Still, I’m sorry you’re stuck with compressed bones, that can’t be easy to manage.

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  6. Well, I loved Vanity Fair and it’s so much fun that it seems like it would be a great choice to cheer you up when you’re struggling with health problems. I hope they all respond to treatment and allow you to feel better soon!

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    1. You are the second person to mention Vanity Fair, so I might just have to read it sooner rather than later if I don’t get it at the Spin!

      Just had a doctor’s appt and I don’t think my foot will improve. I will have to exchange walking for biking and just become the mad lady on bicycle wheels!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. This list is stuffed with great titles! I love Madame Bovary, and many others. I didn’t know that “Poor Little Rich Girl” was the title of a book, I’ll have to go find it! I well remember reading that phrase often in the Trixie Belden books (because her best friend Honey was a PLRG before moving to…wherever it is they live).

    So sorry to hear of your health difficulties; that really stinks. I hope things are on the upswing and that you’ll see a lot of improvement. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Fabulous list — regardless of the spin (although I’m hoping you get one of your choices) you’ll have a wonderful reading experience. Vanity Fair, BTW, was one of my favorite 19th century classics for quite a long time. Becky Sharp is a heroine to remember!
    I’m so sorry to hear about your health issues; I hope the situation improves quickly.

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  9. Dear Laurie, so sorry to hear of your health troubles but I do hope the treatment brings you some relief. This is a fantastic list, I have read and loved most of them. It’s been a long time since o read Dickens and I’m thinking it’s time to sink into one of those novels and lose myself in their world for a while. Many best wishes to you and thanks for the update, I was wondering.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Lory. I think I am going to have to accept some physical limitations on my life. I am such a great walker, but that might be coming to an end. It will be challenging to figure out what I’ll be able to do instead. Hopefully, my bike will be a good substitute.

      I don’t know if this happens to anyone else, but when there is more than a two week gap in posting, spam and other unwanted posts fall through the cracks and end up in the comments. ‘Privating’ it was my only choice.

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