Victorian Literature Challenge

Did I say I wasn’t going to sign up for any reading challenges this year?  Yes, I believe I did. Then I saw the Victorian Literature Challenge and couldn’t help myself. I love this period of writing! This is the perfect time to pick up some of my Persephones or give some of my treasured favorites a reread. This one is being hosted by Bethany over at Subtle Melodrama.

Many Victorian books written by women are slowly coming back into print and I’ve decided to concentrate on those this go-around. Ok, maybe I’ll pick up Bleak House by Charles Dickens. But that is it.  Here are the rules.

This challenge will run from 01 Jan 2011 – 31 Dec 2011.
Participants can sign up at any time throughout the year.

Read your Victorian literature.
Queen Victoria reigned from 1837-1901. If your book wasn’t published during those particular years, but is by an author considered ‘Victorian’ then go for it. We’re here for reading, not historical facts! Also, this can include works by authors from other countries, so long as they are from this period.

Literature comes in many forms.
There are so many Victorian reads out there, including novels, short stories, and poetry. One poem doesn’t count as a ‘book’: pick up an anthology instead!

Choose your books.
List your books before you begin, or pick up titles along the way. It’s up to you! You can review them if you choose to, but it’s not necessary. If you don’t have a blog, that’s fine! Link to a Facebook, or a page somewhere where you can list what you’ve been reading. If you can’t link up, no problem – feel free to just comment and enjoy.
Spread the love.
Post the reading challenge on your blog – make your own post(s), or stick the button on the side of your page. The more the merrier, after all. Let’s build a big community of Victorian literature lovers!
Choose from one of the four levels:

Sense and Sensibility: 1-4 books.
Great Expectations: 5-9 books.
Hard Times: 10-14 books.
Desperate Remedies: 15+ books.

As usual I’m going with the lowest one to start, Sense and Sensibility. Not for lack of books, but lack of time.  They will all be women authors and either written at the specified Victorian Period or the authors will have been born and raised within that period.  I don’t have a list yet but these are possibilities:
Mrs. Beeton’s Book of Household Management by Isabella Beeton
Wives and Daughters or Cranford by Elizabeth Gaskell
The Victorian Chaise Lounge by Marghanita Laski
The Yellow Wallpaper by Charlotte Perkins Gilman

6 Responses

  1. Have fun with the challenge! I’m banning myself from them this year…

  2. Ha! I did too! I always get carried away and then suddenly, all I read is challenge books. I’m trying to control myself. We’ll see!

  3. Yay! Hope you enjoy the challenge – Mrs Beeton’s is a hilarious read!

  4. Hi Bethany – Thanks I’m glad to be a part of it. I saw a deal on Mrs Beeton on Amazon so I ordered it. One day before I found out about this challenge! Was it meant to be or what?

  5. Gaskell has long be a favorite! (Though I confess to disliking Dickens intensely though his good friend Collins is one of my favorite authors.)

    Good choices! Can’t wait to read the reviews!

  6. Wha? You don’t like Dickens! Just kidding. 🙂

    I’m looking forward to spending some quality time with Gaskell again. I’m also reading The Woman in White though I’ve put it down several times for other books. Thanks for reminding me to get cracking on that one!

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