Reviewing Old Books: March/April 2016

“It is a good rule, after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between. If that is too much for you, you should at least read one old one to every three new ones. Every age has its own outlook. It is especially good at seeing certain truths and specially liable to make certain mistakes. We all, therefore, need the books that will correct the characteristic mistakes of our own period. And that means the old books…. Not, of course, that there is any magic about the past. People were no cleverer then than they are now; they made as many mistakes as we. But not the same mistakes. They will not flatter us in the errors we are already committing; and their own errors, being now open and palpable, will not endanger us.” ~C.S. Lewis

I have my Saturday Review of Books, a place for all the bloggers’ reviews from the past week to be linked and enjoyed. However, I thought today that it might be a good thing, once a week or once a month, to do a post where I round up the reviews I find of “old books”. We could all use a few more “old books” to season our reading lives and to give us a different perspective on things. Lewis was probably writing about really old books, written in classical Latin and Greek, but for the purposes of this round up, I’m going to go with 70 years old or more, so published before 1946. I’ll post the reviews I’ve come across this month of books more than 70 years old, and if you have written a review of a qualifying book or if you’ve seen one, please leave a link in the comments. I’ll be happy to pull it up into the post.

So, without further ado, the monthly (?) round up of reviews of old books, for your reading pleasure:

The Temple: Sacred Poems and Private Ejaculations by George Herbert (1633) at Operation Actually Read Bible.

An Account of the Life of Mr Richard Savage, Son of the Earl Rivers by Samuel Johnson (1744) at Tweetspeak.

Bartleby the Scrivener by Herman Melville (1853) at Across the Page.

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens (1859) at Semicolon.

The Mystery of Edwin Drood by Charles Dickens (1870) at Happy Catholic.

A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court by Mark Twain (1889) at Barbara’s Stray Thoughts.

Resurrection by Leo Tolstoy (1899) at Semicolon.

Beatrix Potter’s Tales (1902-1905) at Simpler Pastimes.

I Will Repay by Baroness Orczy (1906) at journey-and-destination.

Sir Nigel by Arthur Conan Doyle (1906) at journey-and-destination.

Pollyanna by Eleanor Porter (1913) at Living Books Library.

Peacock Pie (1913) by Walter de la Mare at Wuthering Expectations.

South! The Story of Sir Ernest Shackleton’s Last Expedition, 1914-1917 by Ernest Shackleton (1919) at Margy Meanders/Powell River Books.

The Pastures of Heaven by John Steinbeck (1932) at Becky’s Book Reviews.

The Flowering of New England by Van Wyck Brooks (1936) at Faith, Fiction, Friends.

The Sword in the Stone by T.H. White (1938) at Barbara’s Stray Thoughts.

The Baker’s Daughter by DE Stevenson (1938) at Books and Chocolate.

New England Indian Summer 1865-1915 by Van Wyck Brooks (1940) at Faith, Fiction, Friends.

The Long Ships by Franz Gunnar Bengtsson (1941, 1945) at Brandywine Books.

Brideshead Revisited by Evelyn Waugh (1945) at journey-and-destination.

For more “old book” suggestions and reviews, check out:

The 1938 Club at Stuck in a Book. Here are the links to reviews of books published in 1938.

Books of the Century website lists best-selling books by year beginning in 1900.

Back to the Classics Challenge 2016.

The blog Simpler Pastimes has a Classic Children’s Literature event going on, where bloggers can add links to reviews of classic children’s books written at least 50 years ago, so published prior to 1966.

2 thoughts on “Reviewing Old Books: March/April 2016

  1. Sherry – thanks for including mine! Great list!

  2. Oh, I love this idea!

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