Quiz: Can You Match This Classic British Novel to the Correct Author?: HowStuffWorks
Can You Match This Classic British Novel to the Correct Author?
By: Bambi Turner
7 Min Quiz
Image: lisegagne/E+/Getty Images
About This Quiz
You can name every Hogwarts student by name, but do you know which British writer created Harry and his friends? Remember who came up with the horrors of "Frankenstein," the hope of "Great Expectations" or the whimsy of "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland?" Take our quiz to see if you can match some of the greatest British novels ever written to the correct author.
At the start of the 18th century, as Americans were struggling to survive frigid winters and scrape together enough food, British writers were thriving, penning books that readers are still devouring hundreds of years after publication. The years since then have brought even more classics, from the important social commentary in "Pride and Prejudice" or "Never Let Me Go," to the pure entertainment offered by "The Wind in the Willows" or the Harry Potter series. Books like "The Lord of the Flies" and "Cloud Atlas" have become required reading because they force us to see society, and ourselves, in a new light, even if some of us might not like what we see, while "Ulysses" is a favorite of college professors because it is writing at its finest, and most challenging.
Think you know which British writers penned some of the UK's best-loved books? Prove it with this quiz!
Which author introduced the world to an orphan named Pip in his 1861 novel "Great Expectations"?
Charles Dickens is one of England's best-loved writers, thanks to works like "Oliver Twist," "David Copperfield" and "A Christmas Carol." In his 13th book, "Great Expectations," which was released in 1861, readers take a journey with Pip from childhood into adulthood, getting to know characters like Miss Havisham and Abel Magwitch.
Who showed readers the depravity of fear and hunger among a group of marooned boys in his 1954 classic "Lord of the Flies?"
What happens when the rules of society no longer apply? William Golding showed how a group of British boys handle being marooned on an island -- and how quickly social standards unravel -- in his 1954 "Lord of the Flies."
"Frankenstein" introduced the world to one of the most misunderstood of all the classic monsters. Do you know which writer penned this work?
It was Mary Shelley who invented Dr. Frankenstein and his infamous Creature in her 1818 novel. The classic Gothic tale reveals the horror unleashed when monsters are brought to life.
This writer's "1984" was so effective at bringing readers into his dystopian setting that his name has become a synonym for totalitarian surveillance societies. Know who he is?
In the 1949 George Orwell release "1984," the characters live in a totalitarian state called Oceania, which is ruled by a regime called the Party. The dystopian novel was so effective at describing the horrors of a world ruled by propaganda and surveillance that the term Orwellian is now used to refer to such a state.
"Jane Eyre" takes readers along with the title character to the mysterious Thornfield, which looms large over the novel. Remember who wrote this tome?
It was Charlotte Bronte who penned the 1847 book about the young Jane Eyre. After a miserable experience at the Lowood School, she becomes a governess at Thornfield, where she falls for her mysterious boss Mr. Rochester. The bad news, as Jane eventually learns, is that Rochester is already married to a madwoman.
Which author's 1848 classic "Vanity Fair" was originally titled "A Novel without the Hero?"
Framed as a puppet show taking place at a local fair, "Vanity Fair" is an 1848 masterpiece by William Makepeace Thackeray. Generations of readers have fallen under the spell of the scheming Becky Sharp and her friend Emily Sedley as they made their way through 19th century English life.
In addition to the 1925 classic "Mrs. Dalloway," which author also gave the world "To the Lighthouse" and "The Waves?"
It's hard to believe that a novel that covers just one day of activity can be such a success, but Virginia Woolf did just that with her 1925 book "Mrs. Dalloway." As the title character goes about her day, organizing a party she will host that same evening, she examines her role in society and her family in this book set between the wars.
If you've spent many hours re-reading the story of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy in "Pride and Prejudice," you have this beloved British writer to thank. Who is it?
Jane Austen created magic in the 1800s with books like "Sense and Sensibility" and "Mansfield Park," but it was "Pride and Prejudice" that gave readers a glimpse into the mind of the mind of the bold Elizabeth Bennet. She finds herself questioning the very idea that "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”
Can you identify the author of the sweeping 2001 masterpiece "Atonement," which describes rural life in 1940s England?
Set in the '30s and '40s in England and France, Ian McEwan's "Atonement" introduces readers to Briony Tallis. After a devastating mistake as a teen, Briony spends her life seeking to right her wrongs, even if she can only do so on paper.
Whose novel "Heart of Darkness" takes readers on a difficult journey through the heart of Africa?
In the 1899 novel "Heart of Darkness," Joseph Conrad takes readers on a terrifying journey with Charles Marlow as he travels up the Congo River. The novel served as the inspiration for the 1979 film "Apocalypse Now," though the setting was changed from Africa to Vietnam.
This writer used the pen name Ellis Bell when publishing "Wuthering Heights," but do you know the author's true name?
Emily Bronte's Gothic classic "Wuthering Heights" was criticized after its 1847 release for questioning social standards and the status quo. This tale in which the ghost of Catherine haunts Heathcliff and the moors around Thrushcross Grange has since become required reading for fans of great books.
"The Lord of the Rings" takes readers on an epic journey with Frodo Baggins as he carries the One Ring. Remember who penned this beloved tale?
Tolkien intended "The Lord of the Rings" as a sequel to "The Hobbit." Instead, he found himself lost in his immersive tale, and ended up splitting the story of Middle Earth and the One Ring into three very treasured books.
The 18th century novel "Robinson Crusoe" gave readers a glimpse at an ingenious castaway, but do you know who wrote this beloved classic?
Move over Tom Hanks, and make room for the original castaway. In Daniel Defoe's 1719 novel "Robinson Crusoe," our narrator spends 28 years trapped on what he names the Island of Despair before being rescued. The story was originally credited to Robinson Crusoe himself, so early readers believed they were reading a true account of his adventure.
Can you remember which iconic British author is responsible for the 1908 novel "A Room with a View"?
"A Room with a View" tells the story of a young woman coming of age in the Edwardian era. Readers of the 1908 E.M. Forster novel follow Lucy Honeychurch as she decides whether to follow tradition or explore a new way of living in the early 1900s.
If you love Mole, Rat, Mr. Toad and Mr. Badger of "The Wind in the Willows," then you have which writer to thank?
Kenneth Grahame's "The Wind in the Willows" has been delighting readers young and old since 1908. The classic stories of mole, rat, toad and badger were transformed into a movie in 1949 with the release of "The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad."
Which author took readers on an emotional and thought-provoking journey with a group of clones in "Never Let Me Go"?
It's hard not to weep for the doomed characters in Kazuo Ishiguro's thought-provoking masterpiece "Never Let Me Go." As clones raised only so their organs can be harvested, Tommy and Ruth are forced to find a way to live knowing they will die young in this 2005 novel.
Love going down the rabbit hole with Alice while flipping through "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland"? Then you're probably a big fan of this writer.
Lewis Carroll wrote one of the first books intended just for young readers with "Alice's Adventures in Wonderland" in 1865. The novel, with characters like the White Rabbit, the Caterpillar and the Mad Hatter has since been made into a beloved 1951 Disney film as well as a 2010 live-action movie starring Johnny Depp.
"Tess of the D'Ubervilles" is a heart-wrenching tale of life in rural England in the 19th century. Can you name its author?
Thomas Hardy takes readers along on a bleak journey with his 1891 release "Tess of the D'Ubervilles." After being raped and giving birth to a child who dies, Tess is shunned by her future husband and eventually put to death for killing the man who raped her.
Publishing traveling tales was all the rage in 18th-century England. Can you remember which writer released his own satirical version with the novel "Gulliver's Travels"?
Tired of the same old travel stories? Jonathan Swift's 1726 classic "Gulliver's Travels" follows the title character as he is imprisoned by tiny people, runs into a bunch of giants, visits a floating island and finds a family of talking horses. The novel has been adapted to the big screen many times, including a 2010 version starring Jack Black.
The Harry Potter series was one of the biggest pop culture phenomenons of the '90s and '00s. Know which writer is responsible for the creation of Harry and the Hogwarts crew?
After a whole bunch of rejections, J.K. Rowling finally found someone to publish "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" in 1997. Two decades later, she's one of the most loved -- and richest -- women on the planet thanks to her magical tales of the Boy Who Lived.
Who brought readers into a terrifying and violent dystopia in the 1962 novel "A Clockwork Orange"?
Author Anthony Burgess claimed it took him just three weeks to write his 1962 masterpiece "A Clockwork Orange." This tale of a violent dystopian future features "Your humble narrator" Alex, who takes readers along as he rapes, robs and kills.
"The Woman in White" is one of Britain's most beloved 19th-century mysteries, but do you remember who wrote it?
In Wilkie Collins' 1859 mystery "The Woman in White," the main character Walter Hartright meets a lost woman, whom he later learns has escaped from an asylum. When he takes a job at a nearby estate, he is stunned to see her again -- or does he?
"Middlemarch" is a sweeping tale of life in century England. Which author penned this tale about Dorothea Brooke and Tertius Lydgate?
George Eliot's 1871 novel "Middlemarch" is an epic tale of life in England at the dawn of the 19th century. While the story focuses on an orphan named Dorothea and a doctor named Tertius, none of the residents of the fictional town of Middlemarch are left out of this story, which reflects upon how actual historical events of the period affected everyday people.
Originally called "The Saddest Story" after its opening line, "The Good Soldier" was renamed after this author was pressured by his publishers to take advantage of WWI fever.
The 1915 Ford Madox Ford novel begins with the line, "The is the saddest story I have ever heard," and readers might just agree. This novel focuses on two unfaithful couples and their troubles as WWI looms in the background, with an unreliable narrator to make things even more interesting.
Which writer penned one of the longest novels in the English language with the 1748 release "Clarissa"?
Kudos to you if you've made it all the way through Samuel Richardson's "Clarissa." At around a million words, it's one of the longest books in the English language. The novel tells the story of a woman trying to make her way in society but ends up in ruins thanks to her own family.
"The History of Tom Jones, A Foundling," takes readers along as an orphan named Tom grows to adulthood. Do you know which author needed 18 books to complete this classic tale?
The 350,000 words that make up Henry Fielding's "The History of Tom Jones" are divided among 18 books. After being adopted into the Allworthy family, orphan Tom Jones makes his way to the big city to find his place in the world in 18th century London.
Who wrote "Cloud Atlas," which was transformed into a sci-fi flick starring Tom Hanks and Halle Berry in 2012?
It's hard to find the right words to describe David Mitchell's 2004 sci-fi/fantasy classic "Cloud Atlas." Consisting of six interconnected stories set in different places and eras, the book was made into a big-budget 2010 film starring Tom Hanks and Halle Berry.
Do you know who made readers dream they were back at Manderley with the Gothic classic "Rebecca"?
Part of the horror in Daphne du Maurier's "Rebecca" is that the narrator is never given a name except for "the second Mrs. de Winter." As she moves into Manderley and faces off with housekeepers Mrs. Danvers, the narrator of this classic 1938 novel learns that her new home may come with some spooky secrets.
"The Picture of Dorian Gray," about a picture that ages so that its subject can keep his youthful appearance, was the only full-length novel by this writer.
Oscar Wilde was a famous writer in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, but "The Picture of Dorian Gray" was his only full novel. Released in 1890, it tells the story of a man willing to sell his soul to maintain his youthful appearance as his portrait absorbs the effects of his hedonistic lifestyle.
Pretty much everything you know about pirates, from peg legs to parrots, comes from this author's 1883 tome "Treasure Island."
It's hard to underestimate the effect that Robert Louis Stevenson's "Treasure Island" has had on pirate lore. The 1883 tale introduced the concept of peg legs, parrots and treasures buried on tropical islands with an "x" to mark the spot.
From "The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe" to "The Last Battle," this author's Narnia series has thrilled readers for decades. Do you know his name?
"The Chronicles of Narnia" by C.S. Lewis has been taking children on a grand adventure since its 1950 release. Admit it, after you read these books, did you try to follow Peter, Susan, Lucy and Edmund through the wardrobe to meet the lion Aslan?
"The Golden Notebook" takes readers inside the damaged mind of Anna Wulf. Remember who penned this engaging tomb?
Doris Lessing's 1962 novel "The Golden Notebook" examines what happens when a compartmentalized life starts to divide the mind. Main character Anna Wulf is a writer who struggles to combine the notebooks that rule her life into a single, golden volume, and readers come along as she heads towards a mental breakdown.
Whose 2000 novel "White Teeth" explores the life of immigrants and their relationship to native Londoners?
After forming a friendship fighting in WWII, the main characters in Zadie Smith's "White Teeth" reunite in London. The 2000 novel takes a profound and gritty look at immigration, religion, social class and poverty.
"The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" tells the story of a teacher who takes charge of six special young girls. Can you ID its author, who also penned "Memento Mori" and "The Mandelbaum Gate?"
Muriel Spark's "The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie" follows the title character as she selects six students to form a special group she will advise in school starting in the 1930s. After years of manipulation, including a risque love triangle, Miss Brodie is betrayed by one of her beloved group of six.
This Irish writer has frustrated and delighted readers with his 1922 novel "Ulysses," as well as other classics like "Finnegan's Wake" and "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man." Can you name him?
James Joyce's books are a challenge but have remained classics because of their brilliance, not to mention the stories and characters. His 1922 novel "Ulysses" is inspired by Homer's Odysseus, and tells the tale of two Dublin men named Stephen Dedalus and Leopold Bloom who form a connection after each experiences a tragic loss.
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