“There is absolutely no necessity to learn how to read; meat smells a mile off, anyway. Nevertheless, if you live in Moscow and have a brain in your head, you’ll pick up reading willy-nilly, and without attending any courses. Out of the forty thousand or so Moscow dogs, only a total idiot won’t know how to read the word ‘sausage’.”
When a stray dog dying on the streets of Moscow is taken in b..
Finding himself locked in his room for six weeks, a young officer uses his imagination to travel around his room, using the various objects it contains as inspiration for a delightful parody of contemporary travel-writing and exercise in Sternean picaresque, and humorously demonstrating what one can explore without having to travel to exotic locations. Contains a foreword by Alain de Botton.
'Nowhere could she discover the dens of iniquity about which she had dreamed...'
Sparkling, darkly humorous tales of high society, playboys, courtesans, peasants, sex and savagery in nineteenth-century France, from the father of the short story.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, with coloured jackets echoin..
Among Dostoevsky's later novels, The Adolescent occupies a very special place: published three years after The Devils and five years before his final masterpiece, The Karamazov Brothers, the novel charts the story of nineteen-year-old Arkady - the illigitimate son of the landowner Versilov and the maid Sofia Andreyevna - as he struggles to find his place in society and "become a Rothschild" agai..
Published a year after The Great Gatsby, this short-story collection showcases many of the celebrated novel's themes, as well as its unique writing style. Two of the most famous tales, the beautifully elegiac 'The Rich Boy' and 'Winter Dreams', deal with wealthy protagonists - the old-money Anson Hunter and the self-made man Dexter Green - as they come to terms with lost love, while 'Absolution'..
Eminent Shakespearean scholars Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen provide a fresh new edition of this classic play about gender, desire, and sexual love. This volume also includes more than a hundred pages of exclusive features, like an original Introduction to All's Well That Ends Well, incisive scene-by-scene synopsis and analysis with vital facts about the work, commentary on past and current p..
Leo Tolstoy's most personal novel, Anna Karenina scrutinizes fundamental ethical and theological questions through the tragic story of its eponymous heroine. Anna is desperately pursuing a good, 'moral' life, standing for honesty and sincerity. Passion drives her to adultery, and this flies in the face of the corrupt Russian bourgeoisie. Meanwhile, the aristocrat Konstantin Levin is struggling t..
The first edition of Antony and Cleopatra developed by and for the RSC, with unique material including a new introduction from Jonathan Bate and interviews with important Royal Shakespeare Company directors. This is the first edition of Antony and Cleopatra to be developed by and for the RSC, the world's leading Shakespeare theater company and it includes unique material to help the reader under..
Set in the year after the 1929 crash and incorporating many autobiographical elements, 'Babylon Revisited' tells the story of the widower Charlie Wales, a reformed alcoholic and successful businessman returning to Paris to convince his in-laws to give him back the daughter he abandoned. As the old haunts of the city he used to carouse in seem more and more alien to him, he finds himself assailed..
Basil and Josephine charts the coming of age of two privileged youths from quiet Midwestern towns, Basil Duke Lee and Josephine Perry - based on Fitzgerald himself and a combination of his first love Ginevra King and his wife Zelda. As one struggles to gain the acceptance of his peers and becomes consumed by ambition, the other finds herself obsessed by teenage crushes and has to confront the pi..
'I pity this house; the curse of God is hanging over it'
Two lovers must face tyrants, war, riots, plague and famine as they struggle to be together, in this teeming panorama of seventeenth-century Italian life - the original historical novel.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, with coloured jackets echoing ..
After being saved from a suicide attempt by a literary editor, the journalist and failed novelist Sergei Maxudov has a book suddenly accepted for stage adaptation at a prestigious venue and finds himself propelled into Moscow's theatrical world. In a cut-throat environment tainted by Soviet politics, censorship and egomania - epitomized by the arrogant and incompetent director Ivan Vasilyevich -..
Explore the transcendent world of unity and ultimate beauty in Edgar Allan Poe’s verse in this complete poetry collection.
Although best known for his short stories, Edgar Allan Poe was by nature and choice a poet. From his exquisite lyric “To Helen,” to his immortal masterpieces, “Annabel Lee,” “The Bells,” and “The Raven,” Poe stands beside the celebrated English romantic poets Shelley, Byr..
Jonathan Bate writes with as much elegance as insight about the making of theatre and the creation of the plays.' (Richard Eyre, Sunday Telegraph). From the Royal Shakespeare Company - a fresh new edition of Shakespeare's gripping political and personal tragedy. This edition includes an illuminating introduction to Coriolanus by award-winning scholar Jonathan Bate. The play - with clear and auth..
Constantly rebuffed from the social circles he aspires to frequent, the timid clerk Golyadkin is confronted by the sudden appearance of his double, a more brazen, confident and socially succesful version of himself, who abuses and victimizes the original. As he is increasingly persecuted, Golyadkin finds his social, romantic and professional life unravelling, in a spiral that leads to a catastro..
'Aristocracy, liberalism, progress, principles...useless words! A Russian doesn't need them'
This humane, moving masterpiece of families, love, duels, heartache, failure and the clash between generations caused a scandal in nineteenth-century Russia with its portrayal of youthful nihilism.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pock..
'Then he saw the barrel of a gun aimed dead on target - not at him, as he might have expected, but at the clergyman's back.'
Set in a crumbling Spanish mansion, this gloriously comic and gothic novel follows the fortunes of an innocent young priest as he enters a world of moral decadence, sexual intrigue and corruption.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in ..
This evocative account of the life of the Renaissance's greatest figure traces Leonardo's early development as an artist and court figure to his final years in exile, portraying his loves and sufferings, as well as his intellectual curiosity and tireless loyalty to his ideals. But it is the background to his famous painting La Gioconda and his relationship with the mysterious Florentine woman wh..
'He too began to chase the great pierrot through the corridors of the château...'
A novel of desperate yearning and vanished adolescence, the story of Meaulnes and his restless search for a lost, enchanted world has the atmosphere of a dream and the purity of a fairy tale.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, ..
From the Royal Shakespeare Company - a fresh new edition of Shakespeare's dazzling comedy. This book includes an introduction to Love's Labour's Lost by award-winning scholar Jonathan Bate. The play - with clear explanatory notes on each page. A scene-by-scene analysis. An introduction to Shakespeare's career and the Elizabethan theatre. A rich exploration of approaches to staging the play. The ..
Beautiful Emma Rouault yearns for the life of wealth, passion and romance she has encountered in popular sentimental fiction, and when her doctor, the well-meaning but awkward and unremarkable Charles Bovary, begins to pay her attention, she imagines that she may be granted her wish. However, after their marriage, Emma soon becomes frustrated with the boredom of provincial life and finds herself s..
A literary sensation from its first publication, The Master and Margarita has become an astonishing phenomenon in Russia and has been translated into more than twenty languages, and made into plays and films. Mikhail Bulgakov’s novel is now considered one of the seminal works of twentieth-century Russian literature. In this imaginative extravaganza the devil, disguised as a magician, descends up..
Jonathan Bate is a passionate advocate of Shakespeare and his introductions are full of striking and convincing observations ... footnotes at the bottom of each page gloss unfamiliar items of vocabulary, paraphrase tricky meanings and uncover bawdy puns. There is a universe to be found in these annotations - the Renaissance world of power and fate, sex and death, language and philosophy.' (The T..
When the young salesman Gregor Samsa wakes up one morning transformed into a monstrous insect, his shock and incomprehension are coupled with the panic of being late for work and having to reveal his appearance to family and colleagues. Although over the following weeks he gradually becomes used to this new existence confined within the bounds of the apartment, and his parents and sister adapt t..
'I could hear the frost crackling outside. Greenish moonbeams shone through windows covered with patterns of ice...'
One of the most moving accounts of being a boy ever written, My Childhood is a both wonderful and harrowing memoir - and one of the great works of Russian literature.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-size..
'There are quantities of human beings, but there are many more faces, for each person has several.'
This dreamlike meditation on being young and alone in Paris is a feverish work of nerves, angst and sublime beauty from one of the twentieth century's greatest poets.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, with co..
New, award-winning translation of Goncharov's popular masterpiece. First published in 1859, Oblomov is an indisputable classic of Russian literature, comparable in its stature to such masterpieces as Gogol's Dead Souls, Tolstoy's Anna Karenina and Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov. The book centres on the figure of Ilya Ilyich Oblomov, a member of the dying class of the landed gentry, who spends m..
'When you have caught the rhythm of Africa, you find that it is the same in all her music.'
In one of the most passionate memoirs ever written, Karen Blixen recalls running a farm in Africa at the start of the twentieth century, and the love affair that changed her life.
A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, wi..
Jonathan Bate is a passionate advocate of Shakespeare and his introductions are full of striking and convincing observations ...footnotes at the bottom of each page gloss unfamiliar items of vocabulary, paraphrase tricky meanings and uncover bawdy puns. There is a universe to be found in these annotations - the Renaissance world of power and fate, sex and death, language and philosophy.' (The Ti..
Written in the 1830s and early 1840s, these comic stories tackle life behind the cold and elegant facade of the Imperial capital from the viewpoints of various characters, such as a collegiate assessor who one day finds that his nose has detached itself from his face and risen the ranks to become a state councillor (The Nose), a painter and a lieutenant whose romantic pursuits meet with contrast..
Presented as a series of letters between the humble copying-clerk Devushkin and a distant relative of his, the young Varenka, Poor People brings to the fore the underclass of St Petersburg, who live at the margins of society in the most appalling conditions and abject poverty. As Devushkin tries to help Varenka improve her plight by selling anything he can, he is reduced to even more desperate c..
Brought together - Pygmalion by George bernard Shaw and My Fair Lady, adaptation & lyrics by Alan Jay Lerner, music by Frederick Loewe.
The ancient Greeks told the legend of the sculptor Pygmalion, who created a statue of a woman of such surpassing beauty that he fell in love with his own creation. Then Aphrodite, yaking pity on this man, whose love could not reach beyond the barrier of s..
This is the first edition of Richard III to be developed by and for the Royal Shakespeare Company, the world's leading Shakespeare theatre company, and it includes unique material to help the reader understand and enjoy Shakespeare on the stage as well as on the page. It is illustrated with photographs of classic and unusual performances. It presents outstanding on-page notes which explain words..
The most comprehensive collection of classic Russian tales available in English introduces readers to universal fairy-tale figures and to such uniquely Russian characters such as Koshchey the Deathless, Baba Yaga, the Swan Maiden, and the glorious Firebird. Beautifully illustrated, the more than 175 tales culled from a landmark multi-volume collection by the outstanding Russian ethnographer Alek..
On his way back to Russia after some years spent in the West, Grigory Mikhailovich Litvinov, the son of a retired official of merchant stock, stops over in Baden-Baden to meet his fiancee Tatyana. However, a chance encounter with his old flame, the manipulative Irina - now married to a general and a prominent figure in aristocratic expatriate circles - unearths feelings buried deep inside the yo..
Charles Dickens wrote a number of supernatural and horror stories, some of which were included in his longer works, while others were published in magazines. This collection gathers them together in one volume, providing an invaluable insight into the author's storytelling apprenticeship and his steady growth towards excellence. As well as offering a further dimension to the world of his better-..
A master of many literary genres, Arthur Conan Doyle excelled particularly in the short-story form, and was acclaimed in his day as much for his detective stories as for his thrilling tales of mystery and the supernatural. While the adventures of Sherlock Holmes have become part of our collective imagination, these stories - concerned with ghosts, obscure scientific experiments and other unexpla..
From the Royal Shakespeare Company - a fresh new edition of two of Shakespeare's classical plays This book includes illuminating introductions to Titus Andronicus and Timon of Athens by award-winning scholar Jonathan Bate. The two plays, with clear explanatory notes on each page. Helpful scene-by-scene analyses and key facts about both plays. An introduction to Shakespeare's career and the Eliza..
From the Royal Shakespeare Company - a fresh new edition of Shakespeare's great tragedy of love and war. This edition includes an illuminating introduction to Troilus and Cressida by award-winning scholar Jonathan Bate. The play - with clear and authoritative explanatory notes on each page. A helpful scene-by-scene analysis and key facts about the play. An introduction to Shakespeare's career an..
Eminent Shakespearean scholars Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen provide a fresh new edition of the classic comedy of courtship and delicious rivalry. This volume also includes more than a hundred pages of exclusive features like an original Introduction to Two Gentlemen of Verona. Incisive scene-by-scene synopsis and analysis with vital facts about the work. Commentary on past and current produc..
"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived."
Inspiring, brilliantly written, cantankerous and funny - Walden is both a very specific story about one man's attempt to live the simple life in the wilderness, and the great, foun..
Set in the Ukrainian capital of Kiev during the chaotic winter of 1918 - 19, The White Guard, Bulgakov's first full-length novel, tells the story of a Russian-speaking family trapped in circumstances that threaten to destroy them. As in Tolstoy's War and Peace, the narrative centres on the stark contrast between the cosy domesticity of family life on the one hand, and wide-ranging and destructiv..
This is the first edition of The Winter's Tale to be developed by and for the Royal Shakespeare Company, the world's leading Shakespeare theatre company, and it includes unique material to help the reader understand and enjoy Shakespeare on the stage as well as on the page. It is illustrated with photographs of classic and unusual performances. It contains outstanding on-page notes which explain..
Filled with princesses and witches, dybbuks and wonder-working rebbes, the two hundred tales that make up this delightful compendium were gathered during the 1920s and 1930s by ethnographers in the small towns and villages of Eastern Europe. Collected from people of all walks of life, they include parables and allegories about life, luck, and wisdom; tales of magic and wonder; poignant encounter..
'The sea is everything. It covers seven tenths of the terrestrial globe. Its breath is pure and healthy. It is an immense desert, where man is never lonely, for he feels life stirring on all sides.'
Scientist Pierre Aronnax and his colleagues set out on an expedition to find a strange sea monster and are captured by the infamous and charismatic Captain Nemo and taken abroad the Nautilus subma..
Over the last fifteen years of his life, Tolstoy collected and published the maxims of some of the world’s greatest masters of philosophy, religion and literature, adding his own contributions to various questions that preoccupied him in old age, such as faith and existence, as well as matters of everyday life.
Banned in Russia under Communism, A Calendar of Wisdom was Tolstoy’s las..
The sixty-four poems in A Child's Garden of Verses are a masterly evocation of childhood from the author of Treasure Island and Kidnapped. They are full of delightful irony, wit and the fantasy worlds of childhood imagination, and introduce for the first time the Land of Nod. But they are also touched with a genuine and gentle pathos at times as they recall a world which seems so far away from u..
Ebenezer Scrooge is a miserly old skinflint. He hates everyone, especially children.
But at Christmas three ghosts come to visit him, scare him into mending his ways, and he finds, as he celebrates with Bob Cratchit, Tiny Tim and their family, that geniality brings its own reward.
This finest of all Christmas stories is beautifully illustrated with Arthur Rackham’s superb line drawings.