The Strand Book Store in New York

So many books, so little time...


Classic books: you do want to read them, yet somehow they always get shoved to the back of your bookshelf and mentally added to your ‘must read later’ list. But as soon as you do give your second-hand copy of Lolita a go, you’ll realise that these books are classic for a reason.

After news that F Scott Fitzgerald's last unpublished stories are to be released in 2017, Team InStyle got a bit nostalgic over their favourite old-school tomes.Your reading list is about to get a lot longer…

If I'm feeling literary - The Trial by Franz Kafka. The idea of a sinister authority figure taking you off into a nightmare world has been copied in some many films, tv shows and books – but Kafka was the original Gangsta – Emily Dean, Deputy Editor

The Metamorphosis by Frank Kafka. It’s creepy as hell and vaguely disgusting, but great. Also Kafka’s The Trial, but that’s more of a test of patience and frustration - George Driver, Beauty Writer

Enid Blyton’s Shadow The Sheepdog: When I was little and misbehaved during dinner, my parents would send me to sit in the corner to think about what a little terror I was. Little did they know, I would always pick the corner by the bookcase and Shadow the Sheepdog was always my book of choice to help me pass the time. It's basically about a boy who loves his dog. I love the sweet story, but also the memories this classic brings back – Suzannah Ramsdale, Digital Editor

Henry Roth’s Call it Sleep. Sad and quite hard to read at points but also really sweet – Jamie Spence, Deputy Picture Editor

As a child, it was Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White. I read it at school quite young (about 10?) and it was the first book that made me cry. Not the first thing though, that was a TV film of Tarka The Otter. Animals make me cry, obviously. As an adult, Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations and Daphne du Maurier’s Rebecca: one of the few books I have a) read more than once and b) own more than one edition of, just because I love it so much. I have a beautiful red hard back of it that has a note in pencil from the 40s in the front because it was a gift. Names and dates and everything! - Hannah Rochell, Fashion Features Editor

Rebecca is the original page turner – Hannah Vere, Creative Director

Rebecca, Lolita (Vladimir Nabokov), 1984 (George Orwell), Great Gatsby, Picture Of Dorian Grey (Oscar Wilde), Far From The Madding Crowd (Thomas Hardy), To Kill A Mocking Bird… they're all just great. Excellent characters, good writing and TIMELESS storylines (not the type where you’re still reading but you’re kind of hating it, like Gone Girl). Classics for a reason – Rebecca Gillam, Digital Writer

Harper Lee’s To Kill A Mockingbird and/or F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby. I studied To Kill A Mockingbird in school, and the book’s message has never left me – we’re talking twenty years later. Atticus Finch for me was basically the world’s most perfect man: a father, a friend and a man who stood up for society’s injustices. I still cannot read the last five pages without welling up. It’s just amazing - Amie Jo Locke, Digital Writer

The Catcher in the Rye by J. D. Salinger. Holden did everything I wanted to do and didn’t care about the consequences, or had the luxury of not caring. Unfortunately I had parents to keep me in check - Madalin Pirvu, Video Producer

Milly-Molly-Mandy by Joyce Lankester Brisley is my all time fave childhood book and now it’s a comfort read – Chloe Mac Donnell, Fashion And Features Writer

ANYTHING by Agatha Christie – I love a murder mystery, and these take me right back to the time Agatha was penning them so they don’t feel dated. I also love Wilkie Collins’ The Moostone (I ‘forgot’ to return this to my school after studying it for A-Level…) - Isabella Silvers, Digital Assistant

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte and Ernest Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast – Charlotte Moore, Editor

Emma by Jane Austen or Mills On The Floss by George Eliot – Arabella Greenhill, Fashion Director 

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