There are some books that have an everlasting quality. And for me, classics gain that everlasting quality when they’ve achieved something revolutionary in how a story is presented or how well a story conveys particular themes relevant to current society and culture. Meaning each book holds something valuable beneath and within its words and characters. There’ve actually been a few books I think that have assumed this status and here are 5 books I think have the potential to become classics in the next few decades.
According to Goodreads: “What books do you think will stand the test of time?”
THE HUNGER GAMES | Suzanne Collins
The Hunger Games stands as the millennial generation’s dystopian novel that gave rise to the definitive YA dystopian genre. This is arguable, of course, but I sincerely believe that this series inspired young readers to possess more books very similar in nature, such as Divergent, Matched, and The Maze Runner. Hunger Games was a game-changer to the YA market. And not only that, it was very clearly a social commentary on today’s social and political climate. It was a glance into a possible future and there’s no better quality to a classic than that.
THIRTEEN REASONS WHY | Jay Asher
Sometimes a novel’s polarizing content gives it a chance to become a classic, such as Lolita and The Picture of Dorian Gray. Approaching topics that would otherwise be considered taboo, depending on the time period and societal constraints of the time, make for novels of a valuable nature. While this book may not necessarily approach suicide in the most perfect of ways, it still makes an effort to raise awareness of not just suicide, but also bullying and rape. They are all topics that prove very hard to stomach but they are some that should be addressed in one way or another. This book, so far, has been one of the best to explore, in my opinion.
SCYTHE | Neal Shusterman
Political commentary almost always makes its way into classics, whether it be overt or covert. As does the question of morality and the difficult choices between right and wrong. There is also the issue of technological advancement and the power that we give to technology as a daily part of our lives. Would it be better to allow an AI, a system without emotional investment, to manage our lives or should we give the power to fellow human beings as we’ve always done. Scythe addresses all these topics and more in a very compelling way. And there is also a discussion of life and death, and how or if another person’s life should govern over these cycles of existence. If this doesn’t scream CLASSIC, I really don’t know what could.
THE SONG OF ACHILLES | Madeline Miller
I feel like this one kind of has an edge because it’s a retelling of a classic, The Illiad. So it’s got classic-like quality built into its frame but what gives this book a modern classic feel is its exploration of a more intimate relationship between Achilles and Patroclus, a relationship that has frequently been theorized by readers and critics for centuries now. Miller has produced a story that is written beautifully and presents a story that feels just as epic and ground-shaking as the original source material.
THE NIGHT CIRCUS | Erin Morgenstern
You know those classics that become classics because the writing is spectacular and the imagery even more so? Those classics that become classic because of the way that they’ve told a story is so outstanding and just outright memorable that people can’t help but remember them for years to come? Yeah, that’s The Night Circus for me. I feel like this book could become a great example for literary technique, figures of speech, style, and structure. There’s so much to learn from it without being bored by the material itself. And I think it’s promising that this book is frequently presented next to classics such as To Kill a Mockingbird and Fahrenheit 451 in the “Books to Read” section of B&N.
Note: Because I have yet to read THUG, I’ve had to put it here. But I definitely believe it has the makings of a classic, as do these other picks! Themes of political unrest, civil rights, exploration of sexual identity, POC protagonists, maturation and bildungsroman, world-building, and so on. All these can be greats in a few years!
Also, I already consider Harry Potter as classics so those don’t count!
Anyways, that’s all I got! What do you think?? Thanks for stopping by and until next time ❤