No matter how avid of a reader you are, it'd be impossible to read everything. As NPR culture blogger Linda Holmes says, "The vast majority of the world's books, music, films, television and art, you will never see. It's just numbers."
So if you can't read it all, you might as well read what you like, right? Oftentimes, that doesn't include the most revered authors. As Mark Twain once said, "a classic is a book which people praise and don't read."
Still, not having read Hemingway or Faulkner could be difficult to explain to teachers, significant other's parents, interviewers, or fancy-schmancy dinner party guests. So we suggest doing what insecure book lovers have done for ages: fake it.
Why not analyze Hemingway's ability to craft concise dialogue, or Faulkner's ability to pen poetic interior monologues without having read their work? Sure, it's not the same as actually reading it, but life is short and books are often long.
So check out our tips for how to bluff seven classic novels, as well as what actually happens in their plots (CONTAINS SPOILERS!), and then get back to reading what you really enjoy.
Which classics have you never read? Which other classics can you help us summarize? Let us know in the comments!
Related on HuffPost:
Get top stories and blog posts emailed to me each day. Newsletters may offer personalized content or advertisements. Learn more