Short-cut classics: all your own work

Last month, The Independent published a compendium of classic novels whose plots were summarised in 25 words or less - and challenged you to do better. These are the highlights...

THE BIBLE

God worked. God rested. Man toiled. God promised rest. God worked again (on wood). "It is finished." God sat down, now man can rest eternally. John Kerr, by e-mail

"Be Good!" Tony Viney, Enniskillen, Co Fermanagh

WAR AND PEACE, by Leo Tolstoy

Men: Aristocratic estate managers gallop about, fight battles and discuss Napoleon and God.

Girls: Aristocratic adolescents say prayers, wear posh frocks and attend soirées. Stephen Davies, by e-mail

MOBY DICK, by Herman Melville

Man goes fishing and eventually has a whale of a time. White is definitely not his colour. Ian Dovey, West Bridgford, Nottingham

THE FRENCH LIEUTENANT'S WOMAN, by John Fowles

A Victorian tale of impossible love involving Charles the Darwinist, a mysterious, caped woman and an absent Frenchman. Poignant or just corn on the cobb? Terry Williams, St Julian's School, Carcavelos, Portugal

WHEN THE WIND BLOWS, by Raymond Briggs

"Let's have a nice cup of tea and listen to the wireless, dear." Boom. "Oh, you look a bit peaky!" Linda Cutts, by e-mail

OLIVER TWIST, by Charles Dickens

Workhouse boy's future takes twist when Oliver bumbles into Fagin's smoker. Could Oliver be Maylie? May be. Sykes' no nancy, but Nancy shops her Bill. Janey Thompson, by e-mail

CRIME AND PUNISHMENT, by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Never cared much for landladies. Anyone seen my sister? Honest, officer! Rushin' toward a bleak ending. Excellent paper-weight. Laura Ashton, Richmond, Surrey

CHOCOLAT Joanne Harris

Good-time girl blows into town. Pious mayor satisfies lust for titillating Mayan delight. Floating gypsy breezes into town, gets girl, fixes draught excluder. Stephen Davies, by e-mail

GONE WITH THE WIND, by Margaret Mitchell

He loves her, she loves him not. There's a big fire in Atlanta. She loves him, he loves her not. See what happens tomorrow. Ian Dovey, West Bridgford, Nottingham

TO THE LIGHTHOUSE, by Virginia Woolf

"Shall we go?"

"Not until Mrs Ramsay has died in brackets." Amanda Langley, by e-mail

THE WOODLANDERS, by Thomas Hardy

Little Hintock, early 19th century: simple girl loves woodman. Woodman loves sophisticated girl. Sophisticated girl falls for doctor. Doctor runs off with rich bald woman. Virginia Astley, by e-mail

PRIDE AND PREJUDICE, by Jane Austen

Suitable girl from unsuitable stock meets unsuitable man from suitable stock. After suitable length of time, she discovers he has behaved very suitably. Suitable ending. Linda Cutts, by e-mail

OEDIPUS REX, by Sophocles

Boy loves girl, girl is his mother. Richard Hutley, by e-mail

DAVID COPPERFIELD, by Charles Dickens

Something turning up. Must be a girl! No, it's the boy David. Heaps of infamy - donkeys trespass; Ham is sandwiched; Emily steers forth, comes third. J Thompson, by e-mail

CAPTAIN CORELLI'S MANDOLIN, by Louis de Bernières

He's feeling plucky. She's feeling lucky. The beach starts getting mucky. Who are you calling ducky? It's all Greek to me. John Ellis, London

A TALE OF TWO CITIES, by Charles Dickens

Londoner volunteers to have his head chopped off in revolutionary tale - he could be in Seine. Ian Dovey, West Bridgford, Nottingham

HEDDA GABLER, by Henrik Ibsen

Oh my God. Bang. David Thompson, by e-mail

BRIDESHEAD REVISITED, by Evelyn Waugh

I was once having lunch in the Granada Television canteen in Manchester. At the next table two electricians were discussing the production of Brideshead, then being made at the studio. "What's it about then?" one asked the other. "Well," came the reply, "it's about two poofs, and one of them dies." As a succinct summary of Waugh's masterpiece, it was hard to beat. David Kemp, by e-mail

MACBETH, by William Shakespeare

Scottish megalomaniac urged on by wife, eventually meets his doom because he can't see the trees for the wood. Ian Dovey, West Bridgford, Nottingham

Three knew: ambition angst. Dripping daggers; spooks, spots and somnambulant Scots; shifting shrubbery and an unborn boy. Who'll mop up the castle in the end? Laura Ashton, Richmond

TRAINSPOTTING, by Irvine Welsh

Yir jokin? Naw, jist gies a line ah'm all oot ay puff. Rents stirrin n away wi the big kitty. Widnae trust nae one. Stephen Davies, by e-mail

ULYSSES, by James Joyce

Man ambles round Dublin for hundreds upon hundreds upon hundreds of pages. Nothing happens. Amanda Langley, by e-mail

WAR OF THE WORLDS, by HG Wells

Ooh-la-la. Overgreen, overlord and over here. Avoid Clapham and take the underground for a brave, new whirl. Tiny ticks topple tinned terrors. Laura Ashton, Richmond

Nasty aliens from Mars decide to invade. Doesn't matter - our weapons are smaller than theirs. Nature is wonderful. Ian Dovey, West Bridgford, Nottingham

FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD, by Thomas Hardy

Curiously named country girl falls for the wrong bloke, but gets together with a nice farmer at the end. Louise Dempsey, London

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