If you’re like most readers, you probably keep a Book List. You know, full of all the books you intend on reading someday. Our list grows each day, literally, and is filled with the latest book releases that peak our interest. But, sometimes, we forget about the classics we’ve been meaning to get to. That’s why we’ve rounded up 5 classic novels you probably haven’t read, but should. Add these to the top of your must-read list, if you haven’t already.
1. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Set during the Civil War, Little Women follows four sisters–Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy–who must depend on one another while their father is away at war and their mother works to support the family. Alcott crafts a beloved coming-of-age classic in Little Women, which focuses on love, loss, and persevering.
2. Persuasion by Jane Austen
Years earlier, Anne Elliot fell in love with Captain Frederick Wentworth, a young, but poor, naval officer. Against her own wishes, Anne was persuaded to end the relationship by her family and trusted friend. Now, eight years later, Anne and Captain Wentworth, meet again. But this time, she must watch from the outside as he catches the eye of the youthful Louisa Musgrove. Austen’s last novel, Persuasion is beautifully written and, perhaps, her most romantic novel.
3. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
Although rather long, Jane Eyre remains one of classic literature’s finest novels. After becoming an orphan and spending her childhood at a cruel charity school, Jane finds work as a governess at Thornfield Hall. She falls in love with the mysterious Rochester, whom Jane learns has terrible secrets of his own.
4. Vanity Fair by William Makepeace Thackeray
Thackeray’s brilliant novel centers on the intertwined friendship between Emmy Sedley and the spirited Becky Sharp. Additionally, it follows the women during and after the Napoleonic Wars. Comical and heartfelt, Vanity Fair is certain to become one of your favorite classics.
5. Gone With The Wind by Margaret Mitchell
Easily idolized as the quintessential Great American Novel, Mitchell’s Gone With The Wind is a must-read. Readers will find no greater romance than that of the spirited Scarlett O’Hara and the dashing Rhett Butler. The arrival of the Civil War forever changes the Southern landscape and tradition that the young, spoiled Scarlett has grown accustomed to. And as everything comes crashing down around her, there’s only one person who can save her.