Classic Book Group

Welcome to the Harbury Village Library Classic Book Group where we read and discuss those books you always wanted to read but never have, or started, but never finished. We meet on the third Tuesday of every month having a selected a book that meets the following criteria:

  • It was first published in book form before 1970

  • It is less than 500 pages long

  • It conforms to this definition from Italo Calvino, "The classics are those books which come to us bearing the aura of previous interpretations, and trailing behind them the traces they have left in the culture or cultures (or just in the languages and customs) through which they have passed.

After the meeting we publish our thoughts about the book on our Classic Book Group blog. If you would like us to send you information about what book we're going to read next, what we thought of the ones we've already read, and how to join our online meetings, please fill in the sign up for our eMail form. There will be one, possibly two, eMails a month and every eMail includes the option to unsubscribe.

Alternatively, you can just eMail us at and we'll add you to our Book Group mailing list.

Books discussed at previous meetings:

"A Tale of Two Cities" by Charles Dickens

"Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus" by Mary Shelley, and "The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde" by Robert Louis Stevenson

"Cannery Row" by John Steinbeck

"Thérèse Desqueyroux" by Francois Mauriac

"Keep the Aspidistra Flying" and "Homage to Catalonia" by George Orwell

"I Know why the Caged Bird Sings" by Maya Angelou

"The Luck of Barry Lyndon" by William Makepeace Thackeray

"At Swim Two Birds" by Flann O'Brien

"Rebecca" by Daphne du Maurier

"Joy in the Morning" by P.G. Wodehouse

"A Parisian Affair and other Stories" by Guy de Maupassant

"Hard Times" by Charles Dickens

"The Oxford Book of Essays" edited by John Gross

"The Call of the Wild" by Jack London

"Emil and the Detectives" by Erich Kastner

"Moby Dick" by Herman Melville

"The Cheapest Nights" by Yusuf Idris

"The Woodlanders" by Thomas Hardy

"On the Road" by Jack Kerouac

"The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" by Muriel Spark

"Cold Comfort Farm" by Stella Gibbons

"Poor Folk" by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

"The Age of Innocence" by Edith Wharton

"The Warden" by Anthony Trollope

"Anna of the Five Towns" by Arnold Bennett

"A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush" by Eric Newby