Auckland Libraries: Read a classic

Read a classic

Read one, some or all of these classic fiction books and check them in for The Great Summer Read.

Wide Sargasso Sea

Jean Rhys

Book

(1966) A brilliantly imaginative prelude to Jane Eyre which gives a voice to the madwoman in the attic, back when she was a Creole heiress in Jamaica embarking on a romance with Mr Rochester, evoking the many silenced stories from the colonial era.

See more

The turn of the screw and other ghost stories

Henry James

Book

(1898) One of the most famous and creepiest ghost stories of all time! A governess becomes obsessed with the belief that malevolent forces are stalking the children in her care.

See more

The member of the wedding

Carson McCullers

Book

(1946) A weekend crisis in the life of Frankie, a motherless twelve-year-old girl, makes a brilliant coming-of-age story told with McCullers's signature mix of perception, humour, pathos, and memory.

See more

A tale of two cities

Charles Dickens

Book

(1859) This vividly written novel set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution keeps the promise of its stirring opening lines "It was the best of times, it was the worst of times"!

See more

Heart of darkness

Joseph Conrad

Book

(1899) "The horror! The horror!" This haunting, enigmatic novella exploring the limits of human experience and the nightmarish realities of imperialism was the inspiration for the movie 'Apocalypse Now'.

See more

The great Gatsby

F. Scott (Francis Scott) Fitzgerald

Book

(1925) Written and set during the glittering jazz age, this beautifully-written story of a man chasing his dreams of love and money captures the disillusion of a society obsessed with wealth and status, and remains a superb read for our era!

See more

The leopard

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

Book

(1958) Often cited as the 20th century's greatest historical fiction, The Leopard recounts the death of the aristocratic era and the rise of nationalism, through the eyes of a larger-than-life Sicilian prince.

See more

One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich

Aleksandr Isaevich Solzhenitsyn

Book

(1962) This short, simply-told novella about a prisoner in the Soviet labour camp system is one of the most significant books of the 20th century, the start of the wave of information about Soviet crimes which would end up destroying the USSR.

See more

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Brontë

Book

(1847) An epic love story set against the magnificent backdrop of the Yorkshire moors. Watch Jane, not pretty but spirited, witty and brave, battle a cruel guardian, a harsh employer and a rigid social order, and come out with her head high and love.

See more

The complete stories of Katherine Mansfield

Katherine Mansfield

Book

(1922) Mansfield was a pioneer of the modern short story and all of these are good reads. If you want just one, The Garden Party, a masterful depiction of colonial and social culture clash set in her native Wellington, is considered her best.

See more

Book list by:

Karen

LibrarianCentral City Library

Auckland Libraries:Book list Recommended reading lists about different topics and genres to help you find new books to read.