So I talked about the top 5 books in the Great American Read on Wednesday. Today I’ll talk about books 6-10. This is a short hot take on the books.
#10 Jane Eyre
I actually really loved this book. It has brilliant commentary on race, class, and gender. Is it in my top ten? No. I think this is another maybe people actually love it/maybe they just think they should entry on the list.
#9 The Chronicles of Narnia series
Loved them as a kid, they’ve been ruined for me as an adult because of how heavy handed the allegory is. WE GET IT. But while I will share The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe with the girls, I’m not going to push the rest of the series. That book seven ends with the Rapture, and that Susan is left out because she wears makeup is shit. I think it’s on the list because people have warm fuzzy memories of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe.
#8 Little Women
I actually took an entire grad school class on Little Women. It’s a good book, but I think it’s on the top ten because people think they’re supposed to like it, or have warm fuzzy memories of it from childhood.
#7 Charlotte’s Web
This is also a warm fuzzy from childhood. I have trouble believing that so many adults think of a kids book as the best book ever. That said, I blubbered when reading this with my daughter, who stayed dry eyed through Charlotte’s death scene.
#6 Gone With the Wind
I have a nostalgic relationship with Gone With the Wind because I first read it at eleven. I used to identify strongly with Scarlett when I was a young teen. But as I got older, I saw what a child she still was. But that was before I really started thinking about race and gender and history carefully. I now see it for all of it’s racist, problematic themes. But I’d be lying if I didn’t admit it helped form me. But like the other four books, I think there was a lot of I should like this book or I’ve heard of this book driving its place on the list.