Penguin USA has posted a trailer about the top ten “essential” literary classics, suggesting you can’t impress women at parties if you don’t know your literature.
Before you attend any holiday soirees you might want to check these out:
Inferno by Dante Alighieri
Walden by Henry David Thoreau (also available here to read online)
Oedipus Rex in The Complete Plays of Sophocles (you can read it here online or watch a 1984 British production of the play featuring Sir John Gielgud)
The Odyssey of Homer (read it online here)
Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice (online here)
Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre (online here)
Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis
Moby Dick, or, The Whale by Herman Melville (read it here online)
William Shakespeare’s Hamlet (watch the 1948 production directed by Sir Laurence Olivier here)
Of Mice and Men in The Short Novels of John Steinbeck
Conversely you could take a shortcut and check out Pierre Bayard’s How to Talk About Books You Haven’t Read.