This month's classic took a little longer than expected, considering I started it mid-January and have only just finished. The Jungle Book by Rudyard Kipling was NOT what I'd expected, having grown up with the Disney film.
WHEN I Discovered This Classic
I kind of think classics aren't classics unless you have known of them for forever, The Jungle Book is a key example.
WHY I Chose to Read It
I thought it would be different to anything I was reading, and boy was it different to anything I'd ever read!
WHAT Makes It A Classic
The Jungle Book (1894) is a collection of stories by English author Rudyard Kipling. The stories were first published in magazines in 1893–94. Kipling was born in India and spent the first six years of his childhood there. After about ten years in England, he went back to India and worked there for about six-and-a-half years. These stories were written when Kipling lived in Vermont.
The tales in the bookare fables, using animals in an anthropomorphic manner to give moral lessons. The verses of The Law of the Jungle, for example, lay down rules for the safety of individuals, families, and communities. Kipling put in them nearly everything he knew or "heard or dreamed about the Indian jungle." The best-known of them are the three stories revolving around the adventures of Mowgli, an abandoned "man cub" who is raised by wolves in the Indian jungle. The most famous of the other four stories are probably "Rikki-Tikki-Tavi", the story of a heroic mongoose, and "Toomai of the Elephants", the tale of a young elephant-handler. As with much of Kipling's work, each of the stories is followed by a piece of verse. (Source)
WHAT I Thought of This Classic
I am not sure what I think of this book. I gave it two stars on Goodreads, mostly because I found it really difficult to understand. Each chapter is quite long (30+ pages on my iPhone) and the language is very old fashioned, by the end I was just willing for it to finish. I did persevere, though I did skim-read the last chapter, but man that was a lot of words. I guess that's fables for you, though.
WILL It Stay A Classic & WHO I’d Recommend It To
Quite probably, though I'm not really sure I understand why. I don't know who I would recommend it to either, it must have a very specific audience.
The Railway Children, by E. Nesbit is next on my list of classics, which I'm sure I have read before but I cannot remember it, so that should be interesting. What classics are you reading?