My aunt, Marilyn Faulkner, has just finished her book called Back to the Best Books. It is designed to assist book groups, or any reader really, in reading some 36 different novels that she calls classic. I just read the introduction of the book and loved her definition of “classic” or great novels! Here are a couple of paragraphs:
“When an author combines brilliant artistry with the desire to uplift and edify, the attentive reader achieves a deepened sense of what it is to be human. A great book is designed to change your mind, touch your heart, and lift your spirit. You should emerge from the experience of reading with some new wisdom about the human condition and a deeper perspective about the experiences of your own life. The careful and compassionate observation of the human soul is the gift that a great novel brings us. We cannot live everywhere; we cannot be everyone. But we can read, and by so doing send out a “cord of communion” (to quote Jane Eyre) to another kind of person, and then another, and then another, until we are reinvented by our interconnectedness. Those few authors that have created truly great novels deserve our serious attention; they add to our ability to live creative and thoughtful lives.”
“…That is why it is so important that literature paint an accurate, rather than an idealized representation of the human heart. Franz Kafka said, “A book must be an ice-axe to break the seas frozen inside our soul,” and Chaim Potok described the process of writing as “mapping the human heart.” The best books show us our true selves, warts and all, yet somehow inspire us to rise above those weaknesses to something finer. To have this kind of life-changing experience, we must reach beyond the level of simple entertainment. Some great books have happy endings, some do not, but each one teaches us something true about ourselves that may lead to more satisfying resolutions of our real-life dramas.”
You can read the introduction to her book in Meridian Magazine here
and her book is available on Amazon here.
And all the proceeds go to charity. Cool, huh?
And don’t you love it when a book is your ice-axe that breaks the seas frozen in your soul? What books have done that for you, OR what did you think about my aunt’s introduction to her book?