Re-awakening literature

I have very little memory of my English Literature classes at school. I really didn’t “get” the need to decrypt poems or plays by famous writers from yonder year and everything associated with it.

But, as I’ve got older, perhaps a little smarter too. I’ve grown quite interested in literature. It pretty much all started when I met a man who was a English Lit. teacher and he was so enthusiastic and passionate about poems, writers and plays, it really became interesting to me too.

Then, whilst teaching abroad, I found a lot of students were studying English Lit. and often would ask me

“Have you read this book called…..”insert title of book” written by “insert author name”?”

“Nope, sorry never heard of it or read it before”

“Oh, it is a great story and “the author” is a very famous writer. How can you not know it?”

Quite honestly, it was because,I had zero interest in English Lit at school and always felt, well what was the point? and after school, I went on to study other areas, not English.

I had many conversations like this and it became apparent that they knew more about English Lit and history then me. I figured, if I wanted to connect better with these students, I should be able to converse with them in something they are interested in.

I remember studying four books at school:

  • Of Mice and Men
  • Romeo & Juliet
  • The Crucible
  • Henry V

With the exception of Romeo & Juliet (because who doesn’t love a tragic love story?), I can honestly say, I cannot remember anything about the other three books. I do remember enjoying Of Mice and Men, but I still cannot recall what it was actually about.

So, the first book I’ve picked to read is: Tess of the D’Urbervilles (By Thomas Hardy)
I’m only up to chapter five and already, someone ruined the ending for me *tut*. However, I’m trying to educate myself a little here, well originally it was to help my students and it still is to some degree, but I’m still actually quite enjoying reading this book.

So, who was or is your favourite writer/ favourite book and why?.