100 Classic Books Everyone Should Read – Part 2

Part two of our summer reading list!

What makes a book a classic? Is it readability, the message, the author’s use of figurative language? Most experts and novices would agree on all of the above, but most importantly, does it stand the test of time? King Arthur and his Knights of the Roundtable appealed to the masses of the 12th century as well as to Guy Richie’s twenty-first century audience with his movie remake of King Arthur. There are the timeless themes of the underdog hero, poverty, wealth, sex, politics, friendship, and of course love, retold and repackaged for new generations. The stories strike a chord of emotion and provide entertainment. Here is the Wildcatter’s list of a few classics that you should not miss in your lifetime of reading. Listed in no particular order, this list will include not only “classic” novels, but young adult novels, children’s books, histories, modern classics, and even cook books.

 

11. A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn- American History delivered from a completely different perspective. This book will definitely provoke discussion and controversy…but that’s the whole point.

12. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury- This book’s protagonist is Guy Montag, who lives in a world where books are burned, people do not to think independently or have meaningful conversations, and watch excessive amounts of television. Hmmmm, sounds familiar.

13. Night by Elie Wiesel- A personal narrative of a Holocaust survivor. Syrian atrocities, terrorist attacks, and Holocaust-like horror stories are tragically becoming common in our world. Human suffering inflicted by other humans is a story that, sadly, is still repeating itself today.

14. Silent Spring by Rachel Carson- One of the most important books ever written on how human behavior can damage the environment. This scientist started an environmental discussion that turned into a revolution.

15. Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown- An examination of a government’s efforts at destroying a culture, religion and way of life seems to be more applicable than ever in our volatile world.

 

16. Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss or any book by Dr. Seuss- Teachers were right! Reading is fun!

17. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen- One of the most popular novels ever. In fact, this book makes the  top “classic” book lists virtually every time.

18. The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien- Bilbo Baggins knows that for some reasons those adventures require us to leave the familiarity of our known world.

19. Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley-A story written by a teenager about a science experiment gone wrong. A creature who really just wants to be accepted and loved, and if not, then at least a “lady-friend”.

20. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes- This book shows us that manners and chivalrous ideals are really missed in the world today, and maybe we can really help the defenseless and defeat the wicked.