Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Top Ten Tuesday: Slump-Busting Classics




Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s topic is books to get you out of a reading slump. When you think of classics, you usually think about the books that make you hate reading. Classics are the nasty things that put people in reading slumps. But, are there any classics that can pull you out of a slump? I think so. Here are ten classics (including modern classics) that have enough adventure and danger to drag you out of a slump.




Slump-Busting Adventure Classics








Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll
(First published in 1865)



After a tumble down the rabbit hole, Alice finds herself far away from home in the absurd world of Wonderland. As mind-bending as it is delightful, Lewis Carroll’s 1865 novel is pure magic for young and old alike.


























Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne
(First published in 1872)


For a bet, Phileas Fogg sets out with his servant Passeportout to achieve an incredible journey—from London to Paris, Brindisi, Suez, Bombay, Calcutta, Singapore, Hong Kong, San Francisco, New York and back to London again, all in just eighty days. There are many alarms and surprises along the way—and a last minute setback that makes all the difference between winning and losing.






















The Call of the Wild by Jack London
(First published in 1903)


Life is good for Buck in Santa Clara Valley, where he spends his days eating and sleeping in the golden sunshine. But one day a treacherous act of betrayal leads to his kidnap, and he is forced into a life of toil and danger. Dragged away to be a sledge dog in the harsh and freezing cold Yukon, Buck must fight for his survival. Can he rise above his enemies and become the master of his realm once again?





















The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien
(First published in 1937)


Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely traveling farther than the pantry of his hobbit-hole in Bag End. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard, Gandalf, and a company of thirteen dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an unexpected journey ‘there and back again.’ They have a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon.






















The Twenty-One Balloons by William Péne du Bois
(First published in 1947)


Professor William Waterman Sherman intends to fly across the Pacific Ocean. But through a twist of fate, he lands on Krakatoa, and discovers a world of unimaginable wealth, eccentric inhabitants, and incredible balloon inventions.

























Endurance: Shackleton’s Incredible Voyage by Alfred Lansing
(First published in 1959)


In August of 1914, the British ship Endurance set sail for the South Atlantic. In October 1915, still half a continent away from its intended base, the ship was trapped, then crushed in the ice. For five months, Sir Ernest Shackleton and his men, drifting on ice packs, were castaways in one of the most savage regions of the world.

Lansing describes how the men survived a 1,000-mile voyage in an open boat across the stormiest ocean on the globe and an overland trek through forbidding glaciers and mountains. The book recounts a harrowing adventure, but ultimately it is the nobility of these men and their indefatigable will that shines through.
















Island of the Blue Dolphins by Scott O’Dell
(First published in 1960)


In the Pacific there is an island that looks like a big fish sunning itself in the sea. Around it, blue dolphins swim, otters play, and sea elephants and sea birds abound. Once, Indians also lived on the island. And when they left and sailed to the east, one young girl was left behind.

This is the story of Karana, the Indian girl who lived alone for years on the Island of the Blue Dolphins. Year after year, she watched one season pass into another and waited for a ship to take her away. But while she waited, she kept herself alive by building shelter, making weapons, finding food, and fighting her enemies, the wild dogs. It is not only an unusual adventure of survival, but also a tale of natural beauty and personal discovery.
















The Stand by Stephen King
(First published in 1978)


Imagine America devastated by a vast killer plague that moves from coast to coast. Imagine the countryside destroyed and great cities decimated as the entire population desperately and futilely seeks safety. Imagine then an even greater evil rising to threaten the survivors—and a last embattled group of men and women coming together to make a last stand against it.






















Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
(First published in 1986)


Brian is on his way to Canada to visit his estranged father when the pilot of his small prop plane suffers a heart attack. Brian is forced to crash-land the plane in a lake—and finds himself stranded in the remote Canadian wilderness with only his clothing and the hatchet his mother gave him as a present before his departure.























Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling
(First published in 1997)


Harry Potter's life is miserable. His parents are dead and he's stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he's a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.












What’s your favorite classic?









88 comments:

  1. Oh! Oh! I love The 21 Balloons! And The Hobbit! And Alice in Wonderland! And Harry Potter!

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    1. I love them, too. Those are all my childhood favorites.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  2. Great list, AJ! I haven't read Call of the Wild, but I recently listened to White Fang and absolutely loved it!! I'm scared to read The Stand (it's sooooo long) but my favourite King novel is The Shining (also excellent on audio).

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    1. The Stand is way longer than it needs to be. It’s entertaining, though.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  3. Ahh Hatchet :) I adored that book as a kid and wanted nothing more to go live in the wilderness like he did. Nevermind the fact I hate bugs and have a great love of indoor plumbing

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  4. I love your suggestions, definitely recommend Harry Potter, The Hobbit and Alice in Wonderland. I like the sound of Island of the Blue Dolphins.

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    1. Island of the Blue Dolphins was one of my childhood favorites. I haven’t reread it since I was a teen. I hope it’s still good.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  5. I'd go Pride and Prejudice or Gone with the Wind for mine. :) Not heard of some of your suggestions - the blue Dolphin one sounds good! But I've never 'got' Alice in Wonderland. It makes no sense to me on any level.

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    1. Alice in Wonderland is extremely weird. I still need to read Gone with the Wind. It’s so long!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  6. yes I find that rereading a classic, something that I know I LOVE it a great way to get out of a slump.. except for king! LOL he is y nemesis. Have NEVER beeen able to finish a book by him LOL

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    1. I can understand why people don’t like King. Most of his books are way longer than they need to be.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  7. Great list! The Hobbit and Hatchet are great quick reads.

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  8. I love this idea, and I agree with pretty much all of these! Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and The Hobbit are two of my particular favorites. :) And Harry Potter of course! I remember reading Island of the Blue Dolphins in school--it was very odd at the time to me, but very interesting as well. Great list!

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    1. I’ve always loved survivalist stories, so Island of the Blue Dolphins was my kind of book.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  9. Love your take on the topic! I had a major reading slump after finishing high school, because of all the classics I was 'forced' to read. But I never read any of these (except Harry Potter), so goes to show I read the wrong classics :) Did love Pride and Prejudice though.

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    1. I had a classics-induced slump after college. Most classics are extremely tedious. That’s why I included so many modern classics on the list.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  10. believe or not, I have never read alice's adventure in wonderland, I don't know what it is, every time I thought to read it, I didn't

    around the world in eighty days - it's a classic that I have read years ago and I thought it's wonderful

    harry potter- I think this is on most people's list, classic or not.

    have a lovely day.

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    1. I debated putting Harry Potter on the list because I assumed it would be on everybody’s list. It’s a modern classic, though, so I had to include it.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  11. Harry Potter is something that always works for me. I try to re-read them once a year, and this year I'm reading them out loud to my son. He usually falls asleep after a chapter, so it's a slow process. :)

    Call of the Wild is one my husband really enjoys!

    Lindsi @ Do You Dog-ear?

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  12. Great list, AJ! I love Island of the Blue Dolphins and Cry of the Wild as well as Alice in Wonderland, Harry Potter and The Hobbit. One of my favorite classics is The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. I found it very readable when I had to read it for school (unlike some of the others we read).

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    1. I’ve read a few Steinbeck books, but not that one, which is weird because it’s one of the more-famous Steinbeck books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  13. There's a few here I'd never heard of before. Love Call Of The Wild though. Haven't read it in ages, but it always used to make me cry

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    1. I reread Call of the Wild constantly when I was younger, but I haven’t reread it in years. I probably should.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  14. Yeah classics aren't my jam but HP totally works for me.

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    1. I think I was too young to “get” that book when I read it. I should probably reread.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  16. So many great ones on your list! I always like a Tolkien when I'm feeling slumpy :)
    Dani @ The Restricted Section

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    1. Tolkien is weird for me because I adored The Hobbit, but I’ve never been able to finish LoTR.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  17. Island of the Blue Dolphins is a great book! I found my copy of Through the Looking Glass and What Alice Found There about a month ago, but I don't know where my matching copy of Alice in Wonderland went. I got them from my grandma a long time ago. She was quite a reader too!

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    1. I’m not sure where my copy of Alice came from. It’s so old that it no longer has covers. It’s just pages and glue.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  18. Great list! My go to classic is Dracula.

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  19. The classics is not my go-to genre when I'm trying to get out of a slump but you really have great choices here.

    You can really never go wrong with re-reading the HP books.

    I have re-read Alice in Wonderland recently as it was heavily referenced in Westworld.

    I have read White Fang and I remember being so emotional about it, I really wanna pick up The Call of the Wild in the future.

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    1. I read White Fang as a preteen, but I don’t remember it very well. Time for a reread. I still have my copy around here somewhere.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  20. I've read Jane Eyre about a million times. It's easier to read than most classics! And Harry Potter is a given - I could pick that up every day.

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    1. I was impressed with how easy Jane Eyre is to read. I expected it to be tedious.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  21. Some great choices here, especially Hatchet, Harry Potter, and Island of the Blue Dolphins. My go-to classics when I'm slumping are To Kill a Mockingbird and Jane Eyre.

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    1. I loved those, too! I’m still not brave enough to read the TKAM sequel.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  22. I very rarely read classics for pleasure because I have to read them all the time for university, but these are some great suggestions! Although I've seen all the movies, I haven't yet read The Hobbit but my sister just recently bought a pretty edition of it so I might finally have to give it a go :D

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    1. I hope you like it! I haven’t seen any of the movies.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  23. The Island of Blue Dolphins and Hachet were amazing! Anne of Green Gables will always be one of my favorites though!

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    1. I still need to read Anne of Green Gables. I somehow missed a lot of children’s classics.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  24. I think The Hobbit might be a great slump buster! I'm due for a re- read of that. Around the World in 80 Days seems like it would be interesting too. I'm not big on classics but I'd like to read more Verne. I've only read 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

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    1. I’ve read 20000 Leagues Under The Sea. Around the World in 80 Days is better.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  25. There is something about that first line in HP1 that gets me all nostalgic and excited about books all over again. Love that it's on your list.

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  26. Excellent list! So many wonderful ones esp Call of the Wild and Island of the Blue Dolphins!

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  27. I enjoyed Endurance and loved The Stand and Harry Potter!

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    1. Me too! Survival books will always be a favorite. And you can’t go wrong with Harry Potter.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  28. Fantastic twist on the topic. I connect two things to most classics - either my childhood or school required reading. Most of the ones up there that I have read, I read as a child, and I remember them fondly.

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    1. Same here. The classics I read on my own are great. The ones forced upon me by school are terrible.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  29. I need to read so many of these for the first time. Seriously aside from HP I haven't read any of them and that makes me sad! I wish I had read more growing up.

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    1. I didn’t read much growing up, either. I tended to read the same books over and over. I’m just now catching up on children’s classics.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  30. Yes! Some of these aren't for me, but HP is also on my TTT list this week. XD I had 21 Balloons on my TBR as I'm trying to read all the Newbery Medal winners. And Call of the Wild?! It's so addicting. Why is that book so well written?!

    Another addicting classic for me is Pride and Prejudice. It just reminds me so much about what I love about reading!

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    1. I’m trying to read all the Newbery winners, too! 21 Balloons was one of my childhood favorites. I haven’t reread it as an adult.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  31. I agree, you have some fabulous books on this list! Thanks for stopping by my blog!

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  32. Wow, I hadn't even HEARD of some of these! I think this week has been emphasizing the number of books that I haven't read... or even heard of. (Tip of the iceberg and all that...)

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    1. There are so many classics that I haven’t read. I’m always trying to catch up.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  33. Hi, looks like a good list of books. When I homeschooled our sons Island of the Blue Dolphins was required reading :)

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    1. If I homeschooled a kid, Island of the Blue Dolphins would definitely be required reading.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  34. Oh what an interesting take on this topic. I totally thought i read island of blue dolphins,but nope I definitely did not!

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  35. I love your all-classics list! I somehow missed reading Island of the Blue Dolphins and Hatchet growing up. They're definitely 2 classics I need to finally read as an adult!

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  36. I completely forgot about Hatchet! That was such a good book... I think there's a sequel as well, but it's not as good as the first if I remember.

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    1. There are a few sequels. I read them all as a kid, but I don’t remember them very well.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  37. Oh my gosh! I had totally forgotten about The Twenty-One Balloons!!! I LOVED that book!

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  38. Fantastic list! The only one I haven't read is The Twenty-One Balloons... but apparently I really need to! Island of the Blue Dolphins made such an impression on me when I first read it.

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    1. Twenty-One Balloons is a strange book (from what I remember), but I loved it because it’s an adventure story.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  39. Your list just brought home to me that Harry Potter is now actually a classic, and God do I feel old right now! I don't like classics simply bc I think the classics that are held in high esteem don't have much relevance to today, compared to what recent authors are doing and should be taught in schools and held in high esteem. *shrugs* I have a love/hate relationship with English class from high school)

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    1. I understand that most classics aren’t relevant anymore. That’s why I included some modern classics. It does seem weird that HP is a classic. I remember when the first book came out and everyone was reading it.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  40. Hatchet, and The Twenty-One Balloons sound interesting. I will have to add them to next year's pile. I will definitely be getting to Island of the Blue Dolphins at some point because of my personal Newbery challenge. Greg and I are doing a buddy re-read of The Hobbit in November and I am starting a re-read of Sorcerer's Stone on September 1st. 📚

    I read anthologies when I get slumpy. ☺

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  41. I loved Island of the Blue Dolphins as a kid! Great choices!

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    1. Me too! That was one of the books I read over and over.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  42. OMG - The Stand is one of my favorites ever! It took FOREVER for me to read it, but it was SO worth the time! :D

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  43. I love that you went with more classic type of books for this. Alice in wonderland is great for a slump. And I really need to read Around the World in 80 Days. I recently rewatched the movie with Jackie Chan (amusing though bad).

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  44. You have picked a genre sure to bust the most difficult of slumps! Excellent.

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  45. I never read classics, but I do like Disney's live-action version of 'Alice.' So... does that kinda' count!? ;)

    Thanks so much for visiting Finding Wonderland!!

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  46. I think we might have a different taste when it comes to classics! I've read The Hobbit, Alice in Wonderland and the first Harry Potter but I didn't like any of them. Although admittedly Harry Potter was better than the first two I listed as I read all the way through to and including the third book. But I haven't read any of the others on this list yet!

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  47. I loved, loved, loved The Call of the Wild by Jack London when I read that. Probably 20ish years ago?! I completely forgot about it, I definitely need to pick it back up again. Thanks for the reminder!
    Jen @ Star-Crossed Book Blog

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