Here are the challenge details:
1. The Victorian Challenge 2012 will run from January 1st to December 31st, 2012. You can post a review before this date if you wish.
2. You can read a book, watch a movie, or listen to an audiobook, anything Victorian related that you would like. Reading, watching, or listening to a favorite Victorian related item again for the second, third, or more time is also allowed. You can also share items with other challenges.
3. The goal will be to read, watch, listen, to 2 to 6 (or beyond) anything Victorian items.
Laura is planning to focus on a different Victorian author for each month in 2012 and I would have liked to have done the same, but I know from experience that scheduling my reading in advance just doesn’t work for me. Therefore I’ll be taking a less structured approach to the challenge. I’ve listed below some of the books and authors I’d like to read, but I’m not planning to read them in any particular order.
The Brontës. I still have two Brontë books to read, both of them by Charlotte – Shirley and The Professor – and I’ll try to read one or both of them in 2012. I’m hoping to spend some time re-reading old favourites next year too, so could also decide to re-read either Jane Eyre or Wuthering Heights. I read both of Anne’s books in 2010 and although I enjoyed them, I don’t think I’ll be reading them again in the near future.
Charles Dickens. It’s Dickens’ 200th birthday in February, which makes the beginning of 2012 the perfect time to read one of his novels. I’ve only read four of his books which leaves me with plenty to choose from. I’m thinking about Great Expectations, but could change my mind.
Thomas Hardy. I’m definitely planning to read at least one Thomas Hardy book for the challenge. I loved Tess of the d’Urbervilles, Jude the Obscure and A Pair of Blue Eyes and enjoyed Under the Greenwood Tree too. I’m not sure which one I should try next but I do want to read all of his books eventually.
Wilkie Collins. I had to include my favourite Victorian somewhere on my list! I’ve read all four of Collins’ most popular novels – The Woman in White, The Moonstone, No Name and Armadale – as well as Poor Miss Finch, Man and Wife, The Law and The Lady, A Rogue’s Life, Basil, The Dead Secret and The Haunted Hotel. If anyone has read any of his other lesser-known novels, I’d love to hear which ones you’d recommend. I do have an e-reader so will be able to download anything that’s available free online.
George Eliot. So far I’ve only read Middlemarch (and Silas Marner at school, though I can’t remember very much about it). I think I’d like to read The Mill on the Floss in 2012.
Anthony Trollope. I’m still working slowly through the Barsetshire novels and hope to finish the series in 2012 by reading The Small House at Allington and The Last Chronicle of Barset. I do also have a copy of Can You Forgive Her? the first in the Palliser series, but it’s probably too ambitious to hope that I’ll have time for that one too.
Elizabeth Gaskell. Again, I have plenty of choices as I’ve only read North and South and The Moorland Cottage so far.
Mary Elizabeth Braddon. Aurora Floyd was on my list for 2011 but I didn’t manage to find time for it. I’ll definitely try to read it next year and hopefully I’ll enjoy it as much as I enjoyed Lady Audley’s Secret and The Doctor’s Wife.
The challenge also allows books that are set during the Victorian period and I’m sure I’ll be reading some of those too.
Are there any Victorian books you think I should definitely read in 2012? Any suggestions or recommendations are welcome! Will you be reading some Victorian literature next year too?