This year, I have been forming some new reading goals as I go. The #52books52weeks goal remains unchanged, but the desire to finally catch up on some never read classics has so far seen me pick up (and finish) George Elliot's Middlemarch and Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina.
For the past two weeks I have lugged this beautiful edition of Anna Karenina around with me, leading to some lovely conversations with strangers in cafés.
An Indian engineer - who I had previously shared nothing more than a polite smile and wave - confessed that he had begun but never completed a Tolstoy; an older (and wonderfully eccentric) woman told me she loves Tolstoy but had never picked up Anna Karenina (I suspect she might now); and a fellow mother, and ER physician, simply exclaimed at what a beautiful story it is.
I read Middlemarch on my ereader, and while it did not take away from the reading experience at all (I truly loved MM) I did not ever find myself in conversations with strangers.