The Classics Club Monthly Meme: August 2012

The Classics ClubThe Classics Club is taking a revolution! We recently launched our own blog (it was formerly sitting at A Room of One’s Own), or more like six members joined forces and put up the blog, and they, the moderators, are assigned tasks in maintaining the smooth running of the club. One of the activities is the monthly meme, and yes, I will be participating in each one of them.

So here’s the topic for the first installment:

What is your favorite classic book? Why?

I find this a pretty easy question. Although I love a number of classics, my favorite one still remains: it’s Hunger by Knut Hamsun. It’s also currently my favorite book of all-time, although it’s being threatened by the contemporary Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. But I won’t talk about that.

Why do I love Hunger? First, I love how it’s written. The narrative is just crazy. It doesn’t feel like a classic at all. It feels very modern, and I think this quality is what separates a classic from the ordinary books. The theme reverberates its literary power through the ages.

Second, I love the theme. Achieving transcendence by means of self-imposed hunger is not something that we commonly read. I find it very original considering that this book was first published in the late 19th century.

Third, it had me both in stitches and in tears. I even found myself kicking my legs up the air while reading. It was that intense. I wanted to talk sense to the protagonist, but after finishing it, I wondered who had more sense between me and the narrator.