Top 10 Modern Classic Novels

Modern classic novels are legendary and all time celebrated. These days youngsters prefer casual reading and avoid reading classics in particular. I do agree, sometimes these books have difficult passages and prose but at the end of the day this collection is an epitome of knowledge and appropriate English grammar. Whenever we read a classic novel we get in touch with so many new words i.e. classic novels are a cluster of perfect vocabulary. Hence, reading a classic novel not only enriches our English world list but also makes us aware of the old time buildings, structural design, ethnicity, rituals and strong bonding between its natives.


1. Gone with the Wind:

Gone with the wind

An ultimate classic of Margaret Mitchell that depicts the picturesque of love, revenge, slavery, freedom and dispute between North America and South America under the able governance of Abraham Lincoln. A girl (Scarlett O Hara) blind and vindictive in love, a patriot (Ashley) ready to die for his country, a lover(Rhett Butler)who sacrifices the whole lot to get Scarlett back into his life and an innocent wife(Melany).This novel is a complete and faultless blend of drama, love, slavery, war and rivalry. Apart from receiving Pulitzer Award for its flamboyant and conspicuous romantic storyline it has also received Oscar for its exceptional screenplay on the big screen.


2. A Passage to India:

A passage to India

Another immaculate literary work by E.M Forster circumscribing India under the rule of British Raj and featuring independence movement. It encircles a deep authentic friendship of an Indian, Dr Mr. Aziz and a British, Mr. Fielding. A plot based on how a trip to Marabar Caves lands Dr. Aziz into a troublesome situation when a British friend Adela blames him of assault. However the trials proved him to be innocent. This is a perfect conglomeration of culture, tradition, customs, religion and differences between Indian and British under the name of prejudice and discrimination.


3. Animal Farm:

Animal Farm

Animal Farm written by the famous British author George Orewell is a satire on the communist system of governance which was prevalent in Russia and its neighbouring countries. The communist system was repressive and believed in total subservience of the people to the government. In the novel the author has visualized an animal farm in which all kinds of animals are living and the head of this animal kingdom is a pig. Initially he is elected democratically by the animals and also functions in a democratic way. But gradually his style of functioning becomes dictatorial. With the help of his core team of advisors he starts bending laws to suit him and his cronies. Existing laws are given new meaning which can help in consolidating the stronghold of the regime on its people. The regime becomes repressive and all those animals opposing it are either killed or jailed. Although elections are held at regular intervals but they are rigged in favour of the ruling party. The inhabitants of the farm are not allowed to mix with the animals in the neighboring farms lest they are poisoned by them with slogans like democracy, freedom of speech, human rights etc. In short Animal Farm is a very beautiful satire on authoritative communist regimes of its time but the story is still very relevant in today’s world also.


4. Pride and Prejudice:

Pride and prejudice

Jane Austen’s one of the most legendary and excellent work, encircles Mr and Ms. Bennett’s five daughters .Being most rational and wise she helps her father with his accounts. Two rich friends Mr Bingley and Mr. Darcy visit their township and fall in for Jane and Elizabeth correspondingly. However situation gets messed up that eventually encounters an unpredictable climax. Author has described London quite well with its etiquette, carts, women drapes and its fine architecture.


5. Wuthering Heights:

Wuthering Heights

Another classic novel which I liked very much is Wuthering Heights written by Emily Bronte. The story is basically of revenge. It follows the life of Heathcliff, a mysterious and shabbily dressed person, from childhood (about seven years old) to his death in his late thirties. Heathcliff rises in his adopted family with other children of his patron. But when he grows up he faces discrimination and then is reduced to the status of a servant. He falls in love with a young woman of his patron but when the young woman he loves decides to marry another person he runs away from home. He returns later, rich and educated, and sets about gaining his revenge on the two families that he believed ruined his life.


6. Roots:


An outstanding chronicle which derives its subject and theme from its very title. In this modern classic Alex Haley has captured the pitying condition of slaves who had been transferred from Africa to other white parts across the globe. This is a story of a teenager boy, Kunta Kinte who is secretly captured from a village of Africa and is sent to a foreign land. Alex Haley is the descendent of Kunta Kinte and he at the end of the story finds his roots through wide travelling and extensive paper research.


7. Sea of Poppies:

Sea of Poppies

Another classic written by Amitav Ghosh encapsulates Deeti and Kalua as indentured labourers from a small town of Ghazipur, India This is based on the theme of enslaved labourers supplied to different parts of the world for the purpose of farming of poppy flowers. During that time a lot of Indians, some by their wish and others forcefully, were sent to neighbouring Indian parts as labourers. With no other option left out they settled there but few of them returned to trace their childhood footprints and descendants. Amitav Ghosh has featured a dark face of Indian labourers and the penury suffered by them during those days.


8. Of Human Bondage:

Of Human Bondage

Of Human Bondage written by Somerset Maugham is another all-time classic. Although denied by the author this novel is autobiographical in nature. The protagonist of the novel Philip Carey is born with a club foot and becomes orphan in life at a very early age. He is taken under the guidance of his uncle. The novel depicts the trials and tribulations of Philip Carey and the problems he has to face in life because of his club foot. He tries his hand at several vocations but gives up in between. Then he takes up medical studies but is not able to complete the course due to financial reasons. In the meantime he also falls in love with several women but here also he is unsuccessful. At last after the death of his uncle and the fortune he inherits from him he is able to complete his medical education. After completing his medical education Philip Carey starts his medical practice in a small town, marries a lady and settles down. Unquestionably it a wonderful and impeccable classic.


9. The Good Earth:

The Good Earth

Another great novel of the twentieth century is The Good Earth written by Pearl S Buck. The author of this book also won the Nobel Prize in 1938. This book is considered one of the greatest classic novel of the last century. The novel depicts the family life of a farmer Wang Lung and his family in a small Chinese village. The story begins with Wang Lung’s wedding and follows the the rise and fall in his fortunes right from a poor farmer to becoming a landowner and then again sinking into poverty due to the wasteful ways of his family members at the end of the novel. The novel depicts very beautifully the social and economic life in Chinese villages first quarter of the twentieth century. In between we also get glimpses of life in the bigger towns and cities in China. The novel also touches the menace of opium consumption in Chinese society and how it was ruining the country as a whole. On the whole the novel is a very good and interesting family drama.


10. Oliver Twist:

Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist is written by Charles Dickens and was published in 1838. The story is about an orphan, Oliver Twist, who endures a miserable existence in a workhouse and then is placed with an undertaker. He escapes and travels to London where he meets the Artful Dodger, leader of a gang of juvenile pickpockets. Naively unaware of their unlawful activities, Oliver is led to the lair of their elderly criminal trainer Fagin. In this famous novels Dickens mocks the hypocrisies of his time by surrounding the novel’s serious themes with sarcasm and dark humour. It is also said that Oliver Twist is a biographical novel based on Dickens’ own early youth as a child labourer .Oliver Twist has inspired authors, filmmakers and play writers over the ages as the novel been the subject of numerous film and television adaptations, musical plays and motion pictures.

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