The first installment in my “Top 5” series is inspired by my recent review of Dorothy Sayers’ novel The Five Red Herrings. I had always heard that Sayers was a good author and this was the first book I read by her. As you can tell by my review, I did not like the book but I’ve heard too many good things about her to quit now and many other people have written that Herrings is her worst book. Below is a list of other authors whom I have never read.
5. Madeleine L’Engle
I have always enjoyed so-called “young adult” fantasy and science-fiction books such as The Chronicles of Narnia and the Harry Potter books. But somehow, despite their popularity, I never got around to reading A Wrinkle in Time, the classic award winning novel by Madeleine L’Engle. I’ve heard different things about whether or not the books reflect a Christian worldview, but I won’t know for sure until I read it myself.
4. G. K. Chesterton
Chesterton was a Christian writer famous for both non-fiction works like Orthodoxy as well as novels like The Man who was Thursday. He seems to get quoted a lot and C.S. Lewis loved his works.
3. Francis Schaeffer
Schaeffer is another Christian writer who gets quoted a lot. I’ve read that he wrote passionately about the relationship between Christianity and the arts, which definitely makes me curious. Some of his books include The God Who is There and How then Should We Live?
I recently read a great article about the necessity of reading the classics, by which the author meant the ancient Greek and Roman works including Virgil’s epic poem The Aeneid. I may know parts of the plot of The Iliad and The Odyssey but I’m not so sure when it comes to The Aeneid. Luckily, a recent translation by Robert Fagles has been getting outstanding reviews so maybe this is my big chance to finally read a genuine classic.
1. Fyodor Dostoevsky
There are two types of people in this world, those who love long Russian novels and those who have never finished one. OK, I’m sure that there are some people who have read Crime and Punishment or War and Peace and just didn’t like them. Usually, people avoid long novels just because of the length. I’m sure that changed a little bit after Oprah picked Leo Tolstoy’s Anna Karenina as one of her book club selections. Anyway, I read that Dostoevsky’s novels are of particular interest to Christians so I’m determined to read one. I’ve already bought a copy of The Brothers Karamazov and hopefully will start it sometime this year.