At some point last year whilst looking for books to read and then write about in my personal statement, I stumbled across a list with the headline ‘The BBC believes you have only read 6 of these books? How many have you read?’. After going through the list I discovered that I had read 20/100 of them, which I was quite proud of. But I decided that I quite liked the vast selection of modern and classic books on this list and that I was going to try and read as many of these as possible to prepare me before I went to uni to study English and Theatre the next year. I read 2 more through the duration of the year but then had to focus entirely on the texts I was studying for A level.
BUT now I have finished my exams and am free to read what I wish to, so I have returned to my list. So here’s a little update as to what I have just read, what I’m currently reading and what I’m going to read next.
Just read: The Woman in Black (1983)
Author: Susan Hill
Date finished: 8th July
Thoughts: Practically every single British 16year old studied this at GCSE, except me. I have seen both the play and movie so thought this book may bore me slightly as I was entirely familiar with the story. But I was wrong, it drew me in. This book was completely gripping and at times unbelievably terrifying. The book had me thinking ‘don’t go back to the house, why are you going back’ on every single page because the protagonist was faced with the woman each time he went and kept returning each time that he felt better i.e. every time he had a roast dinner and a glass of brandy. A classic horror with a loveable, relatable, helpless-from-the-start main character and a haunting villain. A must-read.
Currently reading: The Woman in White (1859)
Author: Wilkie Collins
Current page: p186
Thoughts: My mum actually wanted me to read this because she loved it when she studied it at school so I was glad this was on the list. Although similar in title, this book has no relation to the previous one but is still equally gripping. The book did looked like it may be a little slow due to the period it was written and the size of the book itself but I was surprised to see that action seemed to be happening from the first few pages. So far I’m loving it, a great mix of love, mystery and thriller.
Reading next: Either Tess of the D’urbervilles or 1984. I’m undecided but may favour 1984 to return to a more modern text after I’ve finished The Woman in White.