I snapped the switch, but there was nobody there. Then I saw something in the far corner which made me drop my cigar and fall into a cold sweat.' When Richard Hannay is warned of an assassination plot that has the potential to take Britain into a war, and then a few days later discovers the murdered body of the American that warned him in his flat, he becomes a prime suspect. He flees to the moors of Scotland and a spirited chase begins as he is pursued by the police and the German spies involve..
Three late-Victorian gentlemen, George, Harris and the writer himself as well as their fox terrier Montmorency take a trip in a boat along the River Thames to Oxford. What ensues is a hilarious journey through the English waterways full of anecdotes, and farcical incidents with Montmorency wreaking havoc along the way...
'I do not cling to life sufficiently to fear death.' Adventurous and spirited in tone, The Three Musketeers is considered one of the greatest historical French novels. When Athos, Porthos and Aramis befriend a young and determined country boy d'Artagnan, together they confront the scheming King's Minister, Cardinal Richelieu and the female spy Milady who threaten to undermine the King. Swashbuckling, romantic and often humourous, Dumas' novel is a timeless tale of friendship and intrigue...
A historical romance, The Three Musketeers tells the story of the early adventures of the young Gascon gentleman, D'Artagnan and his three friends from the regiment of the King's Musketeers - Athos, Porthos and Aramis. Under the watchful eye of their patron M. de Treville, the four defend the honour of the regiment against the guards of Cardinal Richelieu, and the honour of the queen against the machinations of the Cardinal himself as the power struggles of seventeenth century France are vividly..
One of Tolstoy’s last published works of fiction, The Devil revolves around the young landowner Yevgeny’s irrepressible lust for Stepanida, a sensual peasant woman. Even when he gets married to a respectable upper-class lady, he finds himself unable to put an end to his encounters with Stepanida, and becomes increasingly consumed by guilt and helplessness in the face of his urges. In some ways comparable to the controversial Kreutzer Sonata, The Devil shows Tolstoy at his most salacious, and ad..
'It's a poor sort of memory that only works backward.'
In Carroll's sequel to Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, Alice once again finds herself in a bizarre and nonsensical place when she passes through a mirror and enters a looking-glass world where nothing is quite as it seems. From her guest appearance as a pawn in a chess match to her meeting with Humpty Dumpty, Through the Looking Glass follows Alice on her curious adventure and shows Carroll's great skill at creating an imaginary world f..
In the Time Traveller's miraculous new machine, we will be carried from a Victorian dinner table to 802,701 AD, when the Earth is divided between the gentle, ineffective Eloi, and the ape-like Morlocks; forward again by a million years or so to glimpse a dying world of blood-red beaches and menacing shapes; and on again to the last days of our planet, a remote twilight where nothing moves but darkness and a cold wind. Brilliantly imaginative fiction or the shape of things to come? H.G. Well's ma..
Thomas Hughes’ novel about the mischievous but kind-hearted schoolboy Tom Brown inspired other school novels, including Frank Richards’ Billy Bunter stories and J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. The novel begins at Tom’s childhood home in the Vale of the White Horse, where he spends his days out in the fields with his pony. This early idyllic setting it set up as a contrast to the stresses that Tom undergoes later at Rugby boarding school when he encounters the bully Flashman. Tom is helped t..
Lively and mischievous, idle and brave, Tom Brown is both the typical boy of his time and the perennial hero celebrated by authors as diverse as Henry Fielding (in Tom Jones) and Alec Waugh (in The Loom of Youth). The book describes Tom's time at Rugby School from his first football match, through his troubled adolescence when he is savagely bullied by the unspeakable Flashman, to his departure for a wider world as a confident young man. This classic tale of a boy's schooldays under the benevole..
Tom Jones is widely regarded as one of the first and most influential English novels. It is certainly the funniest. Tom Jones, the hero of the book, is introduced to the reader as the ward of a liberal Somerset squire. Tom is a generous but slightly wild and feckless country boy with a weakness for young women. Misfortune, followed by many spirited adventures as he travels to London to seek his fortune, teach him a sort of wisdom to go with his essential good-heartedness. With an introduction an..
Following on from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884-5) Tom Sawyer Abroad (1894) became one of Mark Twain's most popular books. Again we meet his world famous characters: Tom Sawyer, 'Nigger Jim', and Huck Finn - together now on a fantastical balloon journey across the Atlantic to meet lions and Bedouins in the Sahara and retrace something of Twain's own expedition to the Holy Land in his best-selling The Innocents Abroad (1869). Later, in Tom Sawyer Det..
Tom Sawyer, a shrewd and adventurous boy, is as much at home in the respectable world of his Aunt Polly as in the self-reliant and parentless world of his friend Huck Finn. The two enjoy a series of adventures, accidentally witnessing a murder, establishing the innocence of the man wrongly accused, as well as being hunted by Injun Joe, the true murderer, eventually escaping and finding the treasure that Joe had buried. Huckleberry Finn recounts the further adventures of Huck, who runs away from ..
Ibn Battutah - ethnographer, biographer, anecdotal historian and occasional botanist - was just twenty-one when he set out in 1325 from his native Tangier on a pilgrimage to Mecca.
He did not return to Morocco for another twenty-nine years, travelling instead through more than forty countries on the modern map, covering seventy-five thousand miles and getting as far north as the Volga, as far east as China and as far south as Tanzania. He wrote of his travels, and comes across as a superb ethno..
'Fifteen men on the dead man's chest –Yo-ho-ho, and a bottle of rum!'
Upon finding a map in his parents' inn, young Jim Hawkins joins a crew on route to the Caribbean to find buried treasure. One of his crew, the charming, yet devious Long John Silver is determined to snag the booty for himself and Jim's swashbuckling voyage becomes a mutinous and murderous adventure – where his own bravery is put to the test and he discovers much about friendship, loyalty and betrayal...
When people use the adjective 'Kafkaesque', it is The Trial they have in mind - the nightmarish world of Joseph K., where the rules are hidden from even the highest officials, and any help there may be comes from unexpected sources. K. is never told what he is on trial for, and when he says he is innocent, he is immediately asked 'innocent of what?' Is he perhaps on trial for his innocence? Could he have freed himself from the proceedings by confessing his guilt as a human being? Has the trial b..
Now seen as one of the great English comic novels, ‘Tristram Shandy’ caused a stir on publication in polite 18th-century English society. The novel broke with conventions of form and structure, foreshadowing postmodern authors by 200 years, and scandalized with bawdy descriptions and rambling prose. Hugely influenced by Francis Bacon, Rabelais and Jonathan Swift, clergyman Lawrence Sterne manages to both eloquently champion the literary and scientific views of the day, and to satirize those same..
Thomas Hardy's only historical novel, The Trumpet Major is set in Wessex during the Napoleonic Wars. Hardy skilfully immerses us in the life of the day, making us feel the impact of historical events on the immemorial local way of life - the glamour of the coming of George III and his soldiery, fears of the press-gang and invasion, and the effect of distant but momentous events like the Battle of Trafalgar. He interweaves a compelling, bitter-sweet romantic love story of the rivalry of two broth..
O comedie a qui pro quo-urilor, probabil cea mai iubita si inventiva comedie a lui Shakespeare, A douasprezecea noapte incepe cu un naufragiu care ii desparte pe Viola de fratele ei geaman, Sebastian. SIngura intr-o tara straina, Viola se deghizeaza in barbat si devine servitorul lui Cesario pentru a ajunge sa lucreze pentru ducele Orsino. Acesta e indragostit de lady Olivia, dar ea il iubeste pe Cesario. Text integral, cu o introducere despre autor, opera si epoca si cu note semnate de Collin S..
A year after the publication of The Three Musketeers, Alexandre Dumas produced a sequel worthy in every respect of the original. In Twenty Years After the much beloved D'Artaganan, Athos, Porthos and Aramis reunite to fight the forces of evil. In the original novel they defeated Milady, a formidable foe; now they need to face her vengeful son Mordaunt, as well as countering the machinations of the sinister Cardinal Mazarin. With an introduction by A. M. de Medeiros. Coll. Wordsworth Classics..
Joyce's astonishing masterpiece tells us of the diverse events which befall Leopold Bloom and Stephan Dedalus in Dublin on 16 June 1904, during which Bloom's voluptuous wife, Molly, commits Adultery. With a new introduction by Cedric Watts. Col. Wordsworth Classics...
Viewed by many as fuelling the abolitionist movement of the 1850s and laying the groundwork for the Civil War, Harriet Beecher Stowe’s sentimental and moral tale of slaves attempting to secure their freedom was one of the most popular books of the nineteenth century. Centred round the long-suffering Uncle Tom, a devout Christian slave who endures cruelty and abuse from his owners, Tom is often celebrated as the first black hero in American fiction who refuses to obey his white masters. With othe..
From the author of ‘Tess of the D’Urbervilles’, ‘Under the Greenwood Tree’ is a tale of love, tragedy and the changing charm of traditional village life when it is met with the cold reality of modernity. Centring on the quaint rural village of Mellstock, set deep within Hardy’s imagined and picturesque county of Wessex, the novel revolves around a double plot of the hopeful love story of Dick Dewey and Fancy Day and the tragic demise of the Mellstock Choir, and what the crumbling of long-held tr..
More's Utopia is a complex, innovative and penetrating contribution to political thought, culminating in the famous 'description' of the Utopians, who live according to the principles of natural law, but are receptive to Christian teachings, who hold all possessions in common, and view gold as worthless. Drawing on the ideas of Plato, St Augustine and Aristotle, Utopia was to prove seminal in its turn, giving rise to the genres of utopian and dystopian prose fiction whose practitioners include S..
‘The greatest schemer of all time, the organizer of every deviltry, the controlling brain of the underworld, a brain which might have made or marred the destiny of nations – that's the man!’
Summoned to a mysterious manor house by one of the henchmen of his arch nemesis, Professor Moriarty, Holmes and Watson find themselves confronted by the scene of a brutal murder. But the brilliant Holmes soon reveals that there is much more to this case than first meets the eye…
First published as a se..
Brilliant anti-heroine Becky Sharp will do anything to climb to society’s loftiest heights and couldn’t be more different from her rich, sweet-natured schoolmate, Amelia Sedley. Their parallel lives are marked by love, lust, marriage, fortune and loss, in all their different guises, as they navigate the corrupt circus of upper-class Regency England.
Hailed as a literary masterpiece upon first publication, William Makepeace Thackeray’s Vanity Fair has never waned in popularity and remains a hi..
'What did she expect of him? What was her quest? Did she have an unfulfilled desire?'
Transgressive desires and sexual encounters are recounted in these four pieces from one of the greatest writers of erotic fiction.
Penguin Modern: fifty new books celebrating the pioneering spirit of the iconic Penguin Modern Classics series, with each one offering a concentrated hit of its contemporary, international flavour. Here are authors ranging from Kathy Acker to James Baldwin, Truman Capote to St..
'Everything was dead, everything unreal; the dark mob was made up of stiff lay-figures'
One of America's greatest writers explores mob violence, voyeurism and betrayal in these unforgettable tales of Californian life.
Penguin Modern: fifty new books celebrating the pioneering spirit of the iconic Penguin Modern Classics series, with each one offering a concentrated hit of its contemporary, international flavour. Here are authors ranging from Kathy Acker to James Baldwin, Truman Capote to S..
A rattle of the window, a cry of the blast only replied - 'Sleep never came!' Based on Charlotte Bronte's own experiences as a governess in Brussels, her last novel tells the story of lonely Lucy Snowe who finds employment at a girls' boarding school in the town of Villette. Finding the students challenging and experiencing the pain of unrequited love for the first time, Lucy becomes increasingly isolated in a world governed by societal expectation and struggles to maintain her integrity in the ..
Turgenev’s final novel, Virgin Soil traces the destinies of several middle-class revolutionaries who seek to “go to the people” by working on the land and instilling democratic ideas in the countryside’s locals. They include the daydreaming impoverished young tutor Nezhdanov – employed by the liberal councillor Sipyagin and his vain and beautiful wife Valentina – the naive young radical Maryanna and the progressive factory manager Solomin.
Their liaisons, intrigues and conspiracies,..
The young Rachel Vinrance leaves England on her father’s ship, the Euphrosyne, on a voyage to South America. Despite being accompanied by her father and her aunt and uncle, Helen and Ridley Ambrose, the passage leads to Rachel’s awakening, both as a woman and as an individual. As the ship is wracked by storms, she finds herself romantically entangled with Richard Dalloway, an encounter that leaves her troubled and confused. Upon arrival in Santa Marina, Rachel strikes off alone to contemplate he..
War and Peace is a vast epic centred on Napoleon's war with Russia. While it expresses Tolstoy's view that history is an inexorable process which man cannot influence, he peoples his great novel with a cast of over five hundred characters. Three of these, the artless and delightful Natasha Rostov, the world-weary Prince Andrew Bolkonsky and the idealistic Pierre Bezukhov illustrate Tolstoy's philosophy in this novel of unquestioned mastery. This translation, by Louise and Aylmer Maude, received ..
No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man's; that as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied. Yet across the gulf of space, intellects vast and cool and unsympathetic regarded this earth with envious eyes, and slowly and surely drew their plans against us.
Then, late one night, in the middle of the English countryside, they landed...
Introduction and Notes by Ian F.A. Bell, Professor of English Literature, University of Keele.
Washington Square marks the culmination of James's apprentice period as a novelist. With sharply focused attention upon just four principal characters, James provides an acute analysis of middle-class manners and behaviour in the New York of the 1870's, a period of great change in the life of the city. This change is explored through the device of setting the novel's action during the 1840s, similar..
'In fact, the fairies had turned him into a water-baby. A water-baby? You never heard of a water-baby. Perhaps not. That is the very reason why this story was written.' Poor Tom is an orphan, employed by the underhand Grimes as a chimney sweep. While cleaning a chimney one day, Tom becomes lost and appears in Ellie's bedroom. She mistakes him for a thief and he flees in fright, down to the edge of a stream where he falls asleep. In his dreamlike world, he becomes a water baby, swimming with the ..
The first historical novel - this tale of romance and adventure during the 1745 Jacobite rebellion will stir the blood and warm the heart.
King George is on the throne, but there are those in Scotland who swear loyalty to the Stuart heir, Bonnie Prince Charlie, and are prepared to stake his claim in conflict and bloodshed. Young Edward Waverley is caught in the middle: son of a Hanoverian yet nephew and heir to a Jacobite, a captain in the King's army yet drawn to the brave Highlanders and th..
We takes place in a distant future, where humans are forced to submit their wills to the requirements of the state, under the rule of the all-powerful Benefactor, and dreams are regarded as a sign of mental illness. In a city of straight lines, protected by green walls and a glass dome, a spaceship is being built in order to spearhead the conquest of new planets. Its chief engineer, a man called D-503, keeps a journal of his life and activities: to his mathematical mind everything seems to ..
‘And now, Katy, it's your turn. Tell us what you're going to be when you grow up.’ ‘I’m not sure about what I’ll be,’ replied Katy; ‘beautiful, of course, and good if I can. That’s what I’d like to be. But now I’ll tell you what I mean to do…’ Tomboyish Katy Carr is tall, gangling and full of mischief. Constantly scheming and playing with her brothers and sisters, 12-year-old Katy dreams that one day she will be ‘beautiful and beloved, and amiable as an angel’. But goodness and obedience don’t c..
Likened to Louisa May Alcott’s Little Women, What Katy Did Next is a timeless classic for both children and adults to enjoy. The story of Katy Carr, the lanky, good-hearted tomboy who learns to be gentle and patient, is continued in this third instalment of Susan Coolidge’s popular Katy series. When Mrs Ashe, a widower, discovers that her visiting nephew has scarlet fever, she sends her only daughter Amy to stay with the Carr family. Amy finds a true friend in Katy Carr, and Mrs Ashe invites Kat..
Katy Carr is untidy, tall and gangling and lives with her brothers and sisters planning for the day when she will be "beautiful and beloved, and amiable as an angel".
An accidental fall from a swing seems to threaten her hopes for the future, but Katy struggles to overcome her difficulties with pluck, vitality and good humour...
What Katy Did at School and What Katy Did Next continue the story of the high-spirited and rebellious American girl, Katy Carr, and her family, who first appeared in What Katy Did. What Katy Did at School is a compelling tale of the intrigues of life at the New England girls' boarding school which Katy attends. Her trials and adventures are all interwoven with a sense of fun and gently ironic good humour. What Katy Did Next describes a tour by Katy of Europe, as she evolves from the child of ear..
I had got an idea that everyone here spent their lives in making little sacrifices for objects they didn't care for, to please people they didn't love; that they never learned to be sincere - and, what's as bad, never learned how to enjoy themselves' E. M. Forster's first novel is a witty comedy of manners that is tinged with tragedy. It tells the story of Lilia Herriton, who proves to be an embarrassment to her late husband's family as, in the small Tuscan town of Monteriano, she begins a relat..
That is not dead that can eternal lie And with strange aeons even death may die Millenia ago, the Old Ones ruled our planet. Since that time, they have but slumbered. But when a massive sea tremor brings the ancient stone city of R'lyeh to the surface once more, the Old Ones awaken at last.
The Whisperer in Darkness brings together the original Cthulhu Mythos stories of the legendary horror writer H.P. Lovecraft. Included in this volume are several early tales, along with the classics 'The Ca..
Fear urged him to go back, but growth drove him on...' Set in the frozen forests of the Yukon Territory, Canada, during the Klondike Gold Rush of the 1890s, 'White Fang' tells the story of a young wolf-dog's journey from the wild into human territory. As White Fang learns that civilisation is every bit as vicious and violent as nature - and that survival is only awarded to the fittest - we too see how instinct, sensation and emotion drive every one of us. Published in 1906 to wide and instant ac..
'It was what we call in the trade a potato...'
Tales of low-lifes and grifters trying to make ends meet in pre-War Germany.
Penguin Modern: fifty new books celebrating the pioneering spirit of the iconic Penguin Modern Classics series, with each one offering a concentrated hit of its contemporary, international flavour. Here are authors ranging from Kathy Acker to James Baldwin, Truman Capote to Stanislaw Lem and George Orwell to Shirley Jackson; essays radical and inspiring; poems moving ..
Un roman clasic pentru copii care i-a incantat de aproape 100 de ani. La tara, intr-o Anglie idilica, Mole, Badger, Ratty si Toad trec dintr-o aventura intr-alta ci continua sa ii incante pe copii si adulti. Text integral, cu o introducere despre autor, opera si epoca, si cu un glosar de termeni...