We’ve all have heard of classics. Pride and Prejudice. The Scarlet Letter. A Tale of Two Cities.
They weren’t magically classics when they were written. Society adopted them into required reading.
Classics are still being written. And chosen. For Top Five Tuesday, here’s 5 modern books I consider classics. And yes, I made certain to not look at anyone’s list before I compiled my own. Even though this is published very late today…ergh, school.
The Hunger Games
The Hunger Games brought dystopian thought to the forefront of everyday thinking. Suddenly we were all interested in 1984 and Orwellian thought. Government control wasn’t unthinkable or totally outlandish.
The Hunger Games was the very first YA series I ever read. It became a cultural obsession. And while dystopian books go through phases of popularity, I definitely think Suzanne Collins work will be read for generations.
I didn’t realize how much influence Harry Potter had on my generation. At least not until this last year. But Potter references are practically everywhere.
Politicians are labeled Voldemort, Congress is compared to the Ministry of Magic, and we’re all trying to decide who the muggles are. Because it can’t really be us, right?
Anyway, all that to say, Harry Potter is already a classic. A generation of kids and adults grew up with Harry. They became part of the fight against death eaters and ministry puppets.
And if anything, that’s what makes a classic, a classic. The way we define ourselves. The characters we love and cherish. The authors that influence our thinking.
Hogwarts is my home isn’t just a catchphrase. For a lot of people, it’s an identity.
The Book Thief
I really, really like how the Book Thief works. The way the story is told, the narrator, the characters. Ordinary Germans. Ordinary children. Extraordinary circumstances.
The Book Thief is poetic, thoughtful, and emotional. I don’t tend to like dark classics, but that is the Book Thief. A Modern Dark Classic.
Six of Crows
My most recent YA read. And the most recently published book I chose.
I don’t just think Six of Crows is craftily written.
It breaks the mold of standard fantasy. Multiple characters and perspectives. Intricate cultural layers.
And it tackles so many issues.
Capitalism and the obsession of merchandise. Racism and religious conflict. Slavery and exploitation.
All the while, treating diversity with respect. Six of Crows doesn’t sugar coat hardship. Racist characters aren’t fixed overnight. Greed ruins good people. Bad people aren’t magically good.
Six of Crows isn’t just a YA classic. It’s great literary fiction for everyone.
I really adore the story of the Help. The spunky characters, the heartbreak, and the Southern sentimentality of the story.
The Help was the first adult fiction book I ever read. I thought about it for months afterwords. I still think about it, especially when I drive through Mississippi.
And yes, I almost model Skeeter. Journalism, aiming high, kind of gal. I loved reading about her. I remember when I switched to studying Journalism, realizing Skeeter and I are in the same field. Squeel!
It was hard to narrow this list to just five. There are some seriously great books out there. Some others I considered were The Giver, All the Light We Cannot See, and the Grisha Trilogy.
Which books do you consider modern classics?
Which classic do you think everyone should read?
Which classic do you think shouldn’t be considered a classic?