Want to Join Us?

Every once in awhile we say things like, “Join us!”  “Hey, you should read that with us!” or “We’re reading Such and Such, you should too!”  To be sure, we mean these things.  We love books, we love readers, we love talking about books, and we love talking to readers.

So, if you are interested in reading part, or all of the list we’ll be your biggest cheering section.  Let us know you are reading, and please comment like crazy on our posts.  We love hearing from Reading Readers.

And if you have read The Well-Educated Mind and have something more to add to our virtual, bloggy conversation then message us on the contact form on the bottom of the sidebar and maybe you’ll get yourself a guest post or two.  And if you’re too good at posting we’ll turn in our keyboards and let you take over.  Okay, maybe not, but sometimes we do need a break.


47 responses to “Want to Join Us?

  1. Sue Matzke

    December 29, 2011 at 9:32 pm

    I am interested in joining your group in 2012. My brain needs a workout.
    Happy New Year!
    Sue 🙂

    • Christine

      December 30, 2011 at 1:20 pm

      We’re happy to have you read along with us. Jane Eyre is the next book we’ll be reading. Welcome!

  2. Sue Matzke

    December 30, 2011 at 1:47 pm

    Is there a particular edition I need? I was hoping to grab a free or nearly free Kindle version.

    • Christine

      January 1, 2012 at 3:37 pm

      Susan Wise Bauer recommends certain editions for each of the novels in her Well-Educated Mind book. Sometimes I’ve read those particular editions. More often I’ve snatched up a used copy and read what I could find. My copy of Jane Eyre was picked up at a thrift store for $1. The version Bauer likes is The Signet Classic Edition (New York: Penguin Putnam, 1993). She also likes the Dover Thrift edition.

  3. Vanessa

    February 26, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    This sounds right up my alley! I read classics for fun and personal enrichment, but I never have anyone to discuss them with.

    • Christina Joy

      February 26, 2012 at 12:34 pm

      Wonderful! Hop on into the conversation, we love a good comment thread!

  4. Crystal

    May 12, 2012 at 1:04 pm

    I just bought The Well Educated Mind. I’m so excited to start this! I’m going to be a bit behind because I want to start at the beginning, even though I’ve already read some of the books. Can’t wait!

    • Christina Joy

      May 12, 2012 at 2:00 pm

      Hoorah! Good for you! We’re excited to have you along for the journey. Feel free to search and comment on old posts from our previous books, we like to go back and talk about them.

  5. Pat

    June 15, 2012 at 7:35 pm

    I’ve had WEM for a decade but I think I need a bit of motivation since I never went past Don Quixote. Seeing these posts, I think I’ll find some inspiration here! I’m a medical librarian who has found herself in a public library…and want to fill in some cracks!

    • Christine

      June 15, 2012 at 9:11 pm

      It’s great to “meet” you! and I look forward to getting to know you better. Happy Reading!

    • Christina Joy

      June 15, 2012 at 9:35 pm

      We’re so happy to have you join us!

      I hope you don’t mind, when I saw that you liked our facebook page I clicked on your name and noticed that you have a degree from UNT – me too!!! (Bachelor of Music back in the 90’s!)

  6. lutheranmama

    July 18, 2012 at 8:18 pm

    I’m going to join! Is it too presumptuous of me to think I can catch up by reading Madame Bovary and Crime and Punishment at the same time? I’ve read both before, but years ago, and pre-baby! 🙂

    • Christine

      July 18, 2012 at 8:48 pm

      Welcome! We’re so happy to have you join us in this literary journey. We’re a relaxed group, so do whatever works best for you with the books. We at the end of Mme Bovary, but we love talking about books and will happily revisit a novel.

      • lutheranmama

        July 21, 2012 at 7:34 pm

        Thanks! Well, I just bought both books today, and already I think my plan of simultaneously reading them will probably not happen. Mme Bovary will just have to wait. Crime and Punishment is huge! Alright, I can do this! I’m ready to dive into Dostoyevsky!

      • Christine

        July 22, 2012 at 6:56 am

        Excellent! Good choice, I think. (although I could be a little biased based on my opinions of Mme B!) Happy Reading!

  7. Rachel

    August 12, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    So, here it is. I’ve been looking for a place to extend my WEM adventure. Trouble is, I am starting so far behind…. DQ, to be exact. I’ve read over half of the books on the novel list before (including DQ), but I didn’t feel that they were “mine” as she puts it. So I started over. Should I jump to the ones I’ve missed first, maybe. Do you think the order is important and that I’ll remember significant parts from my high-school reading?

    • Christina Joy

      August 14, 2012 at 2:33 pm

      Welcome! I’ve been mulling over your question. I think what I would do is go ahead and jump in with us right now, but at the same time review the books you’ve already read (both by reading our posts about them and checking out analysis and summary on Sparknotes) and then maybe starting to sneak the other’s that you haven’t read here or there.

      But then again, I may be biased because I always want people to read along with us 🙂

  8. Megan

    September 6, 2012 at 8:51 am

    Hello everyone, I’m a 31 year old nurse, know almost nobody who reads the classics and the ONLY person I know who considers “Great Expectations” to be her favorite novel. I just can’t seem to get into reading new fiction or much in the non-fiction categories (although I recently read a fascinating book full of narratives from the old-timey baseball players at the turn of the century). Anyways I found your blog while trolling the internet about of all things, whaling! I too have become somewhat enamored by Melville and his masterpiece of American literature. I’m not sure if you are aware but there is a most excellent PBS ‘American Experience’ film called “Into the Deep” -about the hx of whaling. The following is what I read this summer: “Walden”, “All Quiet on the Western Front”, “To Kill a Mockingbird” and a non-fiction about Bobby Fischer in the ’72 Chess World Championship (yes, random). Anyway I just want to say thanks, I love your blog. It’s so great to see others enjoying novels that are considered “classics” for a reason right?! Your posts are witty, intelligent, interesting, and fun all at the same time. Take care and I hope to be ready to read Tolstoy with you all as I have a nice beat up old copy waiting on my shelf. Cheers.

    • Christine

      September 6, 2012 at 3:02 pm

      Howdy, Megan. We’re delighted that you’ve found us. And that you stumbled upon us while searching for whaling topics makes me smile. As I read Moby-Dick, I felt trapped on a three year voyage (a little sea-sick and wishing I was home), but now that a few books have given me some distance from the whale, I rather miss old Melville. Yes, I’ve seen Into the Deep. It was fabulous. So great that I’d love to read Philbrick’s Heart of the Sea book. We’re happy to have fellow readers along for our Anna Karenina experience. Great to “meet” you! Happy Reading.

  9. April

    October 5, 2012 at 11:40 pm

    I would love to join you. I am a first born to, and love this list. I have read WEM, but have only downloaded Don Quiote. I wouldn’t mind skipping ahead to Anna K. Can I join you? What else do I need to do?

    • Christina Joy

      October 6, 2012 at 11:49 am

      Please do!! That’s it, just start reading (both AK and the blog) and comment, comment, comment! Welcome to the fun!

    • Christine

      October 6, 2012 at 2:30 pm

      Howdy, April! It’s nice to have you along for the read. We look forward to getting to know you.

    • April

      December 2, 2012 at 7:12 pm

      So….I didn’t make it through AK, but am committed to Hardy. Downloaded and ready to go. Is there any kind of planned schedule?

      • Christine

        December 2, 2012 at 8:46 pm

        No planned schedule. We’re a very relaxed group. Once a week we ask people where they are in the current book just so we have a general idea where everyone is in the novel. We’re happy to have you read along with us, April!

      • Christina Joy

        December 2, 2012 at 8:48 pm

        Not a strict one from on our end, although our friend Adriana started yesterday (Dec. 1) and is planning to read two chapters a day. We would love to finish by the end of the year. We usually have a check-in of some sort on Mondays to keep us at least aware of where everyone is.

  10. Jeannette

    October 9, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    Megan and April – so good to have you “aboard.” Glad you stumbled onto us and looking forward to hearing your comments. No pressure, though. 🙂

  11. Liz

    December 18, 2012 at 4:31 pm

    I’m joining too! April talked me into it 🙂 I’m starting Portrait of a Lady now because there’s no way I’ll catch up on Native. I’m so excited for this! I was an English major and read few, if any, of these!!

    • Christine

      December 19, 2012 at 8:21 pm

      Welcome, Liz! I was an English major as well, and I was surprised (and a little ashamed) at how few of the titles I read in college. Good idea to jump in with Portrait of a Lady. I peeked at it about a week ago and saw that it’s another lengthy title. I look forward to getting to know you. Happy Reading!

    • April

      December 19, 2012 at 9:06 pm


  12. Virginie

    February 9, 2013 at 2:53 pm

    Hello, it’s lovely to read your blog. I am just starting to read Moby-Dick, although I have already read a few of the more “modern” books from the list. I was very meticulous with my notes for the first books (Cervantes, etc.), but am much more succinct now. If I can, I like to include some French or German classics, too, as I go down the timeline. Mother of 3, living in France, just outside Geneva, Switzerland.

    • Christine

      February 9, 2013 at 3:10 pm

      I’m so glad you commented! It’s wonderful to “meet” other people enjoying the classics. I know I complained about the encyclopedic parts of Moby-Dick, but now I look back fondly to the time I spent reading about the whalers. Happy Melville reading!

  13. Jennifer K

    April 29, 2013 at 8:00 am

    Just found you guys and want to jump in…may I join? I have a almost 2 and 4 year old and will be following TWTM and also want to start my own self-education of the classics. Great blog!!

    • Christina Joy

      April 30, 2013 at 8:38 am

      Absolutely, and thank you! I also use TWTM for our basic curriculum guide. Enjoy your time, comment like crazy, we’re happy you’re here!

    • Christine

      May 1, 2013 at 7:50 pm

      Howdy, Jennifer! I’m so glad you “introduced” yourself. I look forward to getting to know you. Happy Reading!

  14. Kathryn

    May 1, 2013 at 11:33 am

    Like Jennifer, I too found your site this week. It’s so exciting to find others who have made a go of TWEM. I explained on my blog——about my attempts with this plan. I would like to read along with you all, while I still start at the beginning with Don Quixote. I hope this suits. Re-reading The House of Mirth might actually help with tackling Don Quixote for the third time!

    • Christine

      May 1, 2013 at 7:53 pm

      Welcome, Jennifer! I’m glad you found us. Having friends along on this classics journey has been wonderful.

  15. Paula

    June 4, 2013 at 9:12 am

    I’ve recently joined you in this madness. I’ve started with Don Quixote, so I have some catching up to do!

    • Christina Joy

      June 4, 2013 at 10:51 pm

      Hoorah! May your collection of books not meet the same fate as DQ’s. Happy catching up, we’ll see you along the way!

    • Christine

      June 5, 2013 at 2:47 pm

      Welcome! Don’t worry about catching up. We’re happy to discuss any and all of the WEM novels. Happy Reading.

  16. Jenni

    July 2, 2013 at 10:58 am

    I just found you when I found your posts about Anna Karenina, which almost finished with. I’d love to join in too, even if I’m a little late! I’m an English major too, so I’ve read some of the novels. I’ll jump in with The Trial, and try to catch up with the others I missed.

    • Christina Joy

      July 2, 2013 at 11:16 am

      Wonderful! Oh! How I miss Anna. Okay, actually I miss Levin, but you know what I mean.

      We’re happy to have you join us and look forward to reading together!

    • Christine

      July 3, 2013 at 9:51 am

      Welcome! and Happy Reading!

  17. Liz

    September 27, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    I just came across your blog this week, & I absolutely love it. It makes reading this daunting list of classics seem so much more manageable & fun. I’m most likely going to start with Don Quixote in January, since I have a bunch of books I need to finish before the end of the year.

    Question, do you ladies set a timeframe to finish a book? I’m amazed at how many you’ve finished in such a short amount of time.

    • Christina Joy

      September 27, 2013 at 10:58 pm

      Thank you and welcome! I’m happy to report that the classics are much more enjoyable and manageable than I feared. Having company along the way makes all the difference, so feel free to comment on old posts as you start at DQ. We should get notifications, and we all find it enjoyable to revisit the good ol’ days.

      We don’t usually set a timeframe. We try to check in at least once a week with our progress, and then my dear friends always wait patiently for me to finish up.

    • Christine

      September 29, 2013 at 8:16 pm

      Welcome, Liz! We look forward to getting to know you. After Kafka and Camus, I’d gladly talk about Don Quixote’s kind of absurdity. Happy Reading.

  18. Adrian Barritt

    February 14, 2015 at 3:47 am

    Sounds interesting just spent a year onMoby Dick. …


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