By: Lewis Carroll (1832-1898)
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
An acclaimed children’s classic depicting the odd, but riveting journeys of the curious Alice as she explores the surreal world of Wonderland. Written by Charles Lutwidge Dodgson or better known under his pseudonym Lewis Caroll, this episodic novel is assembled in twelve chapters each containing a prominent adventure. The departure from logic and its embracement of pure imagination is what makes Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland a model for fantasy novels and a timeless classic. The novel begins when the self-aware young Alice, who grows bored of sitting by the river with her sister, and spots a peculiar looking rabbit, dressed in a waistcoat...
Alice's Adventures Underground
This is the handwritten book that Carroll wrote for private use before being urged to develop it later into Alice in Wonderland. It was generously illustrated by Carroll and meant to entertain his family and friends. When a sick child in a hospital enjoyed it so much, the mother wrote him saying it had distracted her for a bit from her pain and led eventually to Carroll expanding the story. The Reverend Charles Lutwidge Dodgson and the Reverend Robinson Duckworth rowed in a boat, on 4 July 1862,...
By: Jules Verne (1828-1905)
Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea
An early science fiction novel written by the second most translated author, French writer Jules Verne, the classic tale depicts an incredible sea expedition on board a state-of-the-art submarine. First published in 1870 and a part of the Voyages Extraordinaires series, the novel is regarded as one of the most thrilling adventure stories and one of Verne’s greatest pieces of work. Immersed in themes of exploration, avant-garde technology, and man’s insatiable desire for knowledge and scientific progression, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea has been an influence for many writers as well as an inspiration for numerous film adaptations...
A Journey to the Interior of the Earth
A historical manuscript penned by a medieval Norse poet. A mysterious code. Three intrepid explorers. A subterranean world filled with prehistoric creatures and proto-humans. These are some of the brilliant ideas that are superbly blended in A Journey to the Interior of the Earth by Jules Verne. Jules Verne, the French writer who created several works of science fiction, adventure stories and very popular novels, wrote A Journey to the Interior of the Earth in 1864. Some of his other books explore different aspects of geography, space and time travel...
From the Earth to the Moon
One of the earliest examples of literature written in the science fiction genre, From the Earth to the Moon is a part of the Voyages Extraordinaires series by French novelist Jules Verne. Written more than a century before the Apollo mission, Verne’s classic is somewhat a prophetic novel of man’s travel to the moon with its thorough and descriptive detail. A remarkable blend of action, humor, science, and audacious schemes, the timeless classic is sure to fascinate with its unique vision of lunar exploration...
Off on a Comet
The story starts with a comet that touches the Earth in its flight and collects a few small chunks of it. Some forty people of various nations and ages are condemned to a two-year-long journey on the comet. They form a mini-society and cope with the hostile environment of the comet (mostly the cold). The size of the 'comet' is about 2300 kilometers in diameter - far larger than any comet or asteroid that actually exists.
Doctor Ox's Experiment
An early, light-hearted short story, published in 1872 by Jules Verne. It takes place in the Flemish town of Quiquendone, where life moves at an extraordinarily tranquil pace. Doctor Ox has offered to light the town with a new gas, but actually has other plans in place.
By: L. Frank Baum (1856-1919)
Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz
Its publication soon after the 1906 San Francisco earthquake got readers instantly hooked on the story in which Dorothy and her friends sink into the bowels of the earth, following a devastating earthquake in California. Dorothy and the Wizard in Oz is the fourth in the series of books written by American children's author L. Frank Baum. In this novel, Dorothy visits her Uncle Henry in his California ranch. She, her friends, her cousins and a few pets are traveling in a buggy when the earth suddenly splits open and the entire lot falls into the crack...
The Scarecrow of Oz
Published in 1915, The Scarecrow of Oz is the ninth book in the Oz book series and focuses on the adventures of Cap’n Bill, Trot, and the Scarecrow, who find themselves entangled in the politics of Jinxland and must work against formidable odds to overthrow its despot and restore rule to its rightful successor. Apart from the appearances of familiar faces, the novel also accommodates a fresh set of characters and magical creatures residing in the Land of Oz, further contributing to its classification as a typical Baum masterpiece...
The Marvelous Land of Oz
Published in 1904, The Marvelous Land of Oz is the second book in Baum’s Oz series and follows the adventures of Tip, a young boy who travels the mystical Oz after running away from the terrifying witch Mombi. Furthermore, the novel reunites readers with familiar characters including the Scarecrow, Tin Woodman, Glinda the Good Witch, while also introducing bright new characters who deem to be just as memorable. Unlimited action, intense magic, captivating characters, and an unexpected twist, the adventure novel has remained a classic for generations, and has only strengthened the series appeal with its fresh intake on the familiar set...
Tik-Tok of Oz
Betsy Bobbin encounters many strange and exciting adventures and people in the land of Oz; a side-plot is Queen Ann of Oogaboo’s mission to take over Oz.
The Lost Princess of Oz
Who is stealing all the magic in Oz? Dorothy and her friends set out to comb all of Oz, not only for magic stolen from Glinda and the Wizard, but also for the kidnapped princess, Ozma. Along the way, they explore regions never seen in other Oz books, meeting strange and interesting people and animals, and falling into peril more than once. It’s a desperate mission – for if the thefts are all linked, then it means that some magician unknown to them has acquired powers beyond any available to them now. How will they find him? And how will they conquer him? Not one of them knows – but with continuing faith that goodness will triumph, they march forth to try.
Published in 1912, the fantasy novel focuses on the exciting adventures of Trot, Cap’n Bill and Button Bright, as they are accidentally transported to a mysterious island in the sky, where they encounter its eccentric residents, an unscrupulous ruler, and a strange set of laws. The story sets into motion when Trot, a little girl from the southern coast of California, and Cap’n Bill meet a peculiar young boy carrying a large umbrella. Introduced as Button Bright, the young boy reveals that...
Little Wizard Stories of Oz
The “Little Wizard Stories of Oz” are six short stories written by L. Frank Baum in 1913. By all accounts, Baum intended to finish the Oz series with “The Emerald City of Oz,” published in 1910. Following that, he attempted to write non-Oz books, publishing “The Sea Fairies” in 1911 and “Sky Island” in 1912. But, (as Baum himself laments in the prefaces of many of his Oz books,) his “little tyrants” were only interested in hearing more Oz stories. So in 1913, he returned to writing about Oz, putting out both The “Little Wizard Stories” and “The Patchwork Girl of Oz” that year...
The Enchanted Island of Yew
A fairy has become bored with her life, and convinces some young girls to transform her into a human boy so she can go on adventures. The adventures come fast and furious, as the newly-named Prince Marvel explores the surrounding kingdoms. A masochistic squire accompanies Marvel, helping him with assorted kings, knights, dragons, and other medieval menaces along the way.
The Master Key
The Master Key was one of Baum’s earliest full length fantasy books for children, published in 1901 just one year after The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. The protagonist, Rob, while experimenting in his workshop, accidentally summons up an electrical fairy who presents him with electrical devices so advanced as to seem magical. His gifts include a flying contraption, a stun gun, and something resembling an omniscient portable TV set. Rob travels the world, rendering assistance to European heads of state and narrowly escaping disaster at the hands of “primitive” cannibals, Turks and Tatars, pirates, and evil scientists who try to steal his inventions...
Glinda of Oz
Glinda of Oz is the fourteenth Land of Oz book and is the last one written by the original author L. Frank Baum, although the series was continued after his death by several other authors. Dorothy and Ozma discover that a war is brewing in a distant and unexplored part of Oz, between two mysterious races, the Flatheads and the Skeezers. The girls set out to try to prevent the fighting, not knowing what dangers await them.
The Magic of Oz
L. Frank Baum’s last beloved Oz book before his death, this story deals with the discovery of a powerful magic word by a young boy from Oz, who immediately is plunged head-first into adventure through his discovery.
Rinkitink in Oz
Rinkitink in Oz is the tenth book in the Oz series written by L. Frank Baum, first published in 1916. It was originally written in 1905 as a stand alone fantasy work and subequently rewritten as an Oz book. Therefore, most of the action takes place outside of Oz in neighboring fairy countries. It tells the story of Prince Inga’s quest to rescue his parents from captivity after his island home is ravaged by enemies. With the help of three magical pearls and the more dubious assistance of the excessively...
The Tin Woodman of Oz
The Tin Woodman of Oz is the twelfth Land of Oz book written by L. Frank Baum and was originally published on May 13, 1918. The Tin Woodman is unexpectedly reunited with his Munchkin sweetheart Nimmie Amee from the days when he was flesh and blood. This was a backstory from The Wizard of Oz.
The Sea Fairies
In 1910, Baum hoped to end the Oz series and follow with a new series about a little girl named Trot and her sailor companion, Cap’n Bill. The Sea Fairies (1911) was the first book in the projected series and took Trot and Cap’n Bill under the sea where they had adventures with mermaids and other fantastic creatures. It was followed by Sky Island (1912) and then Baum returned to the Oz titles. He brought Trot and Cap’n Bill to Oz in the Scarecrow of Oz (1915).
The Patchwork Girl of Oz
An unlucky Munchkin boy named Ojo must travel around Oz gathering the ingredients for an antidote to the Liquid of Petrifaction which has turned his beloved uncle Unc Nunkie and the wife of the Liquid's creator into marble statues. Ojo is joined by the patchwork girl Scraps, Dorothy, Dr. Pipt's Glass Cat, the Woozy, the Shaggy Man, the Scarecrow and the Tin Woodman. They eventually visit the Emerald City to ask for help from the Wizard of Oz.
The Surprising Adventures of the Magical Monarch of Mo and His People
The Magical Monarch of Mo is a set of stories about the titular king, his queen, and his royal children. The stories are uproariously funny, dealing with topics as absurd as a man losing his temper who then tries to find it, an evil midget who steals a princess's big toe, and an entire city filled with highly civilized monkeys! Join the Monarch and all his friends for a rollicking adventure, filled with fun for the whole family!
By: H. G. Wells (1866-1946)
The First Men in the Moon
Written nearly seven decades before Neil Armstrong's historic “Giant leap for Mankind” this book by one of the most influential sci-fi writers in English is an interesting read. The First Men in the Moon by Herbert George Wells, the English author who is today called the Father of Science Fiction, describes a strange and fantastic voyage. Businessman and budding playwright, John Bedford takes a sabbatical from his work and decides to write a play. He moves to a lonely cottage in Kent where he hopes to come up with a theatrical masterpiece...
By: Jack London (1876-1916)
"Before Adam is a mixture of sound science and sci-fi speculation. It is based around Darwin's theory of evolution and the idea of racial memory. The main character lives in the current world but has dreams and nightmares that he relives the pre-stone age life of one of his proto-human ancestors. Those who are scientifically inclined may enjoy this novel more than fans of "standard" science fiction such as Edgar Rice Burroughs.
By: Edgar Rice Burroughs (1875-1950)
Tarzan of the Apes
An aristocratic English family is marooned off the coast of West Africa. They find their way into the interior of the dense jungle that lines the coast and here, Lord Greystoke is killed by a predatory ape. Lady Greystoke survives with her infant boy, but in a few months, she too succumbs to the perils of jungle life. The baby is adopted by a maternal she-ape who nurses him along with her own child. This marks the dawn of a legend – Tarzan of the Apes. Edgar Rice Burroughs was an American novelist who turned to fiction writing after an unsuccessful stint as a pencil sharpener salesman...
The Chessmen of Mars
If you're a sci-fi fan, then you've probably heard of Edgar Rice Burroughs' famous Barsoom series of science fiction fantasy novels. Set in the “dying planet” Mars, the ten books in the series portray an Earthman, John Carter and his astral journey to the Red Planet, his marriage with a native princess and his descendants. The Chessmen of Mars is the fifth book in the Barsoom set, written in 1921 and published in serial form in Argosy magazine over the period of a year. Here, John Carter's daughter Tara meets Prince Gahan of the Gathol kingdom, but takes an instant dislike to the young and fashionable man, feeling that he is just a shallow youth...
At the Earth's Core
This is the first book in the Pellucidar series. Pellucidar is a fictional Hollow Earth milieu invented by Edgar Rice Burroughs for a series of action adventure stories. The stories initially involve the adventures of mining heir David Innes and his inventor friend Abner Perry after they use an “iron mole” to burrow 500 miles into the earth’s crust. (adapted from Wikipedia)
The Return of Tarzan
The novel picks up where Tarzan of the Apes left off. The ape man, feeling rootless in the wake of his noble sacrifice of his prospects of wedding Jane Porter, leaves America for Europe to visit his friend Paul d’Arnot. On the ship he becomes embroiled in the affairs of Countess Olga de Coude, her husband, Count Raoul de Coude, and two shady characters attempting to prey on them, Nikolas Rokoff and his henchman Alexis Paulvitch.
The Beasts of Tarzan
Originally featured as a five-part serial in All-Story Cavalier magazine in 1914 and later published in book form in 1916, The Beasts of Tarzan is the third book in the gripping Tarzan series. Shifting from London to the natural African scenery, the novel follows Tarzan as he finds himself in the wicked ploy of old enemies, which launches him into a mission to save his beloved wife and son, while also caring for his own welfare. Furthermore, he must go back to his previous life and reclaim his position as king of the jungle...
Thuvia, Maid of Mars
Published in 1920, Thuvia, Maid of Mars is the fourth book in the Barsoom series and concentrates on Carthoris, the son of infamous John Carter, and Thuvia, the princess of Ptarth, as they find themselves entangled in a complex web of love and strict traditions of Barsoom. A typical Burroughs piece, the installment contains all the required elements of an effective pulp fiction, including a hero, a damsel in distress, unforeseen complications, and a generous supply of action. Welcoming a new...
Son of Tarzan
This is the fourth of Burrough’s Tarzan novels. Alexis Paulvitch, a henchman of Tarzan’s now-deceased enemy, Nikolas Rokoff, survived his encounter with Tarzan in the third novel and wants to even the score. (adapted from Wikipedia)
Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar
This is the fifth of Burrough’s Tarzan novels. Tarzan finds himself bereft of his fortune and resolves to return to the jewel-room of Opar, leaving Jane to face unexpected danger at home.
Jungle Tales of Tarzan
Jungle Tales of Tarzan is a collection of twelve loosely-connected short stories written by Edgar Rice Burroughs, comprising the sixth book in order of publication in his series about the title character Tarzan. Chronologically, the events recounted in it actually occur between chapters 12 and 13 of the first Tarzan novel, Tarzan of the Apes.
Pellucidar is a fictional “Hollow Earth” milieu invented by Edgar Rice Burroughs for a series of action adventure stories. The stories initially involve the adventures of mining heir David Innes and his inventor friend Abner Perry after they use an “iron mole” to burrow 500 miles into the earth’s crust. This is the second book in the series.
Tarzan the Terrible
In the previous novel, during the early days of World War I, Tarzan discovered that his wife Jane was not killed in a fire set by German troops, but was in fact alive. In this novel two months have gone by and Tarzan is continuing to search for Jane. He has tracked her to a hidden valley called Pal-ul-don, which means "Land of Men." In Pal-ul-don Tarzan finds a real Jurassic Park filled with dinosaurs, notably the savage Triceratops-like Gryfs, which unlike their prehistoric counterparts are carnivorous...
The Mad King
Shades of The Prisoner of Zenda! All our old friends are here—the young king, the usurping uncle and his evil henchman, the beautiful princess, the loyal retainer and the unwilling imposter. What more could you Hope for? This fast-paced story stays far away from Tarzan’s jungle or the inner world of Pellucidar.
Tarzan the Untamed
This book follows Tarzan and the Jewels of Opar chronologically. The action is set during World War I. While away from his plantation home in East Africa, invading German troops destroy it and kill his wife Jane and the Waziri warrior Wasimbu who is left crucified. Tarzan's search for vengeance is filled with much danger, many fierce fights and tons of action as he becomes active in the war on the British side. This is really just the start of the exciting adventures portrayed in this book.
By: Rudyard Kipling (1865-1936)
The Brushwood Boy
The experiences in public school, Sandhurst and military life in India of Major George Cottar together with his adventures in the dream world he discovers and frequents.
By: Kenneth Grahame (1859-1932)
The Reluctant Dragon
Regarded as one of Grahame’s most distinguished short stories, the children’s classic was first published in 1898 and featured in Dream Days, a reminiscent short story collection for children, and has also been adapted into a feature film from Walt Disney Productions. The story centers on the events following the discovery of a dragon living inside a cave near a small town, which its residents perceive as dangerous and a threat to their safety, whereas as a young boy goes out of his way to prove the dragon’s harmless nature...
Dream Days is a collection of children’s fiction and reminiscences of childhood written by Kenneth Grahame. A sequel to Grahame’s 1895 collection The Golden Age (some of its selections feature the same family of five children), Dream Days was first published in 1898 under the imprint John Lane: The Bodley Head. (The first six selections in the book had been previously published in periodicals of the day—in the Yellow Book, the New Review, and in Scribner’s Magazine in the United States.) The book is best known for its inclusion of Grahame’s classic story The Reluctant Dragon...
By: G. K. Chesterton (1874-1936)
The Man Who was Thursday
Two poets in a London park at sunset, debating on the attributes of poetry and whether it's really a metaphor for anarchy. A group that meets in secret, planning to overthrow the world order. Disguises and deceptions, ideals and ideology. A medley of themes and genres makes this a great read for anyone who's a fan of Chesterton and his iconic Father Brown. The Man Who Was Thursday includes Chesterton's favorite theme of Christianity with touches of delightful humor to enliven the twists and turns that abound throughout the book...
The Napoleon of Notting Hill
While the novel is humorous (one instance has the King sitting on top of an omnibus and speaking to it as to a horse: “Forward, my beauty, my Arab,” he said, patting the omnibus encouragingly, “fleetest of all thy bounding tribe”), it is also an adventure story: Chesterton is not afraid to let blood be drawn in his battles, fought with sword and halberd in the London streets, and Wayne thinks up a few ingenious strategies; and, finally, the novel is philosophical, considering the value of one man’s actions and the virtue of respect for one’s enemies.
The Ball and the Cross
The Ball and the Cross is G. K. Chesterton's third novel. In the introduction Martin Gardner notes that it is a "mixture of fantasy, farce and theology." Gardner continues: "Evan MacIan is a tall, dark-haired, blue-eyed Scottish Highlander and a devout Roman Catholic.... James Turnbull is a short, red-haired, gray-eyed Scottish Lowlander and a devout but naive atheist.... The two meet when MacIan smashes the window of the street office where Turnbull publishes an atheist journal. This act of rage occurs when MacIan sees posted on the shop's window a sheet that blasphemes the Virgin Mary, presumably implying she was an adulteress who gave birth to an illegitimate Jesus...
The Flying Inn
The Flying Inn is a novel first published in 1914 by G.K. Chesterton. It is set in a future England where a bizarre form of "Progressive" Islam has triumphed and largely dominates the political and social life of the country. Because of this, alcohol sales are effectively prohibited. The plot centers around the adventures of Humphrey Pump and Captain Patrick Dalroy, who roam the country in their cart with a barrel of rum in an attempt to evade Prohibition, exploiting loopholes in the law to temporarily prevent the police taking action against them.
By: Alan Edward Nourse (1928-1992)
Five Stories by Alan Nourse
These Five Stories were written by Alan Edward Nourse, an American science fiction (SF) author and physician. He wrote both juvenile and adult science fiction, as well as nonfiction works about medicine and science. His SF works generally focused on medicine and/or psionics. Psionics refers to the practice, study, or psychic ability of using the mind to induce paranormal phenomena. Examples of this include telepathy, telekinesis, and other workings of the outside world through the psyche.
By: Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)
The Murders in the Rue Morgue
This story opens with a mother and daughter found brutally murdered inside a locked room in an upstairs apartment on a street in Paris. The police are baffled by both the ferocity of the crime and the lack of clues. Neighbors give conflicting evidence. Two friends are intrigued by the entire situation as reported in the newspapers. They decide to do a little investigating on their own. What they come up with is one of the most shocking and strangest of conclusions. The Murders in the Rue Morgue by Edgar Allan Poe is perhaps the first modern detective tale, though similar stories by Voltaire and ETA Hoffman did appear a few decades earlier...
Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym
Published in 1838, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket is Poe’s only complete novel and concentrates on several sea adventures gone awry. The novel follows Arthur Gordon Pym, who finds himself in the center of gloomy occurrences on board numerous vessels, as his anticipated sea adventure takes a drastic shift in the wind. Shipwreck, starvation, mutiny, near death experiences and cannibalism are just some of the issues endured in the gripping, and at times gruesome novel. The adventure...
Two Poe Tales
Edgar Allan Poe is best known for his famous short horror stories; however, horror is not the only genre in which he wrote. How To Write a Blackwood Article and its companion piece A Predicament are satirical works exploring the pieces of the formula generally seen in short horror stories (”articles”) found in the Scottish periodical “Blackwood’s Magazine” and the successful misapplication of said formula by – horrors! – a woman author! – respectively.
By: H. Rider Haggard (1856-1925)
A timeless classic of fantasy literature, She is recognized as the groundwork for the lost world literary sub- genre. First published serially in The Graphic magazine from 1886 to 1887, the novel has reached critical acclaim with approximately 100 million copies sold and is regarded as one of the best-selling books of all time. Exploring themes of imperialism, lost civilization, female authority and psyche, the novel also serves as a mirror to reflect Victorian issues such as gender and race. ...
The Ivory Child
Allan Quatermain's first adventure with Lord Ragnall. (Introduction by laineyben)
By: George MacDonald
A fantasy novel first published in 1895, Lilith follows a young man on his inter-dimensional journey of spiritual discovery, as he acquaints himself with his family’s past and unearths a life-changing secret. Moreover, it deals with the introspection of its protagonist, as he is hurled into a mysterious setting where he encounters bizarre creatures that challenge the validity of his temporal values. Examining issues including the essence of life, wisdom, death, redemption, and salvation, the novel presents a masterfully woven plot that marks the piece as one of MacDonald’s darkest and most intense contributions to the fantasy genre...
The Day Boy and the Night Girl
First appearing in Harper’s Young People as a serial, the piece focuses on the extraordinary tale of a young boy and a girl who have been brought up in a secluded and controlled environment by a wicked witch, incognizant of the world outside of their custom tailored settings. Enriched with magic, fantasy, romance, and allegory, The Day Boy and the Night Girl is a great instance of MacDonald’s excellent use of metaphors to express a deeper meaning to a seemingly simple fairy tale. The novel begins with the introduction of Watho, a wicked witch who has an insatiable thirst for knowledge...
The Princess and Curdie
The Princess and Curdie is the sequel to The Princess and the Goblin by George MacDonald. It’s been a year since the Princess Irene and Curdie first met, and a year since the goblin incident and all appears to be going well in the Kingdom. Or is it? After a visit from Irene’s great-great-grandmother, Curdie finds himself on a mission to save the kingdom, with a rather strange companion in tow.
“Old Ralph Rinkelmann made his living by comic sketches, and all but lost it again by tragic poems. So he was just the man to be chosen king of the fairies…” George MacDonald (December 10, 1824 – September 18, 1905) was a Scottish author, poet, and Christian minister. Though no longer well known, his works (particularly his fairy tales and fantasy novels) have inspired admiration in such notables as W. H. Auden, J. R. R. Tolkien, and Madeleine L’Engle. The Shadows is one such fairy tale...
A young man named Anodos experiences dream-like adventures in Fairy Land, where he meets tree-spirits, endures the presence of the overwhelming shadow, journeys to the palace of the fairy queen, and searches for the spirit of the earth. The story conveys a profound sadness and a poignant longing for death. (Brad Powers)
The Cruel Painter
This is the story of a daring college student's quest to win the icy heart of a beautiful girl. Unfortunately, the girl is the daughter of a cunning and sadistic master artist, who takes the student as an apprentice with the express intent of torturing the youth with his own hopeless love. The story is set in late 16 century Prague, amid mysterious happenings and the terrifying rumors of a vampire on the loose.
By: Jonathan Swift (1667-1745)
Comprised of four parts, Gulliver’s Travels documents the bizarre, yet fascinating voyages of Lemuel Gulliver as he makes his way through several uncharted destinations, experiencing the lives of the small, the giant, the scientific, and downright eccentric societies. Narrated in first person, Swift successfully portrays Gulliver’s thoughts and reactions as he faces struggles of integration throughout his travels. Beginning with the introduction of Gulliver, an educated ship’s surgeon, who after a series of unfortunate events is victim to repeated shipwrecks, desertions, and set adrift...
By: Edith Nesbit (1858-1924)
The Enchanted Castle
A children’s fantasy novel first published in 1907, The Enchanted Castle recounts the marvelous adventures encountered by a curious group of children searching to enliven their summer holiday. Written in episodes, the novel has a different adventure in store for its young heroes in each chapter, including vibrant statues, banquets with Greek gods, and reunited lovers. The novel begins when siblings Gerald, James and Kathleen are required to spend their summer holiday in a boarding school, due to unfortunate events at home and are consequently left under the supervision of a French schoolmistress...
The Story of the Treasure Seekers
The six Bastable children are plunged into grief when their mother dies and their father's business partner cheats him of all his money. As a result, he loses not only his fortune but also his good name. However, the children decide to lend a hand. Determined to restore both, the children set out to find some way of making money. A variety of amusing and exciting events follow as they plunge into a series of scrapes in search of a legendary lost treasure. Published in 1899, The Story of the Treasure Seekers by E Nesbit was her first children's novel...
The Magic City
Philip and Lucy discover that the city Philip has built using toys, books and household objects, has come alive. This is the account of their incredible adventures in those magical lands, where they meet characters from books and history, mythical beasts, and many other nice (and not so nice) people and creatures. As with all Edith Nesbit’s tales, The Magic City has generous helpings of humour, imagination and interesting ideas, as well as the over-arching story of how a boy and girl who have unwillingly become step-brother and sister eventually learn to like each other. A story that works on many levels and will be equally enjoyed by adults and children.
The Wonderful Garden or The Three C.'s
Do you believe in magic? Caroline, Charles and Charlotte do, and nothing that happens during their summer holiday at their great uncle's house does anything to diminish that belief. There the Three C.'s find a wonderful garden and some very old books, resulting in escapades which do not necessarily please the grown-ups.E. Nesbit, as usual, transports us back to the hazy summer days of a well-to-do Edwardian childhood, liberally spiced with magic, humour and lessons learned.Published exactly 100 years ago, this is one of her least-known children's books, out of print for many years, and with no text available online at the time of recording...
By: Thornton W. Burgess (1874-1965)
The Adventures of Buster Bear
Known to generations of children and their parents as the Bedtime Story Man, Thornton Waldo Burgess wrote nearly two hundred much loved children's books. They were tales that recounted the doings of delightful characters who inhabited the Green Meadow and the Green Forest. Burgess, who was also an ardent conservationist besides being a writer and journalist shared his love of Nature and respect for all beings who share this earth with us. The Adventures of Buster Bear is a fun children's book that helps children understand that animals and the forest deserve respect and it is also a sincere call for responsible conservationism...
By: Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)
The Marble Faun
The Marble Faun is Hawthorne's most unusual romance. Writing on the eve of the American Civil War, Hawthorne set his story in a fantastical Italy. The romance mixes elements of a fable, pastoral, gothic novel, and travel guide. In the spring of 1858, Hawthorne was inspired to write his romance when he saw the Faun of Praxiteles in a Roman sculpture gallery. The theme, characteristic of Hawthorne, is guilt and the Fall of Man. The four main characters are Miriam, a beautiful painter who is compared...
By: William Blake
The First Book of Urizen
The Book of Urizen is one of the major prophetic books of the English poet William Blake, illustrated by Blake’s own plates. It was originally published as The First Book of Urizen in 1794. Later editions dropped the word “first”. The book takes its name from the character Urizen in Blake’s mythology, who represents alienated reason as the source of oppression. The book describes Urizen as the “primeaval priest”, and describes how he became separated from the other Eternals to create his own alienated and enslaving realm of religious dogma...
By: Joseph Smith Fletcher (1863-1935)
Dead Men's Money
A naïve but sincere young lawyer's assistant who only dreams of marrying his childhood sweetheart and yearns to have a home and family with her. His sharp witted boss keeps the firm going by dint of shrewd business sense and legal talent. When the assistant accidentally stumbles into a murder case, the scene is set for events that change all their lives. Dead Men's Money by Joseph Smith Fletcher was published in 1920, the era considered to be the Golden Age of detective fiction. Writers like Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Dorothy L...
By: H. Beam Piper (1904-1961)
Fenris isn't a hell planet, but it's nobody's bargain. With 2,000-hour days and an 8,000-hour year, it alternates blazing heat with killing cold. A planet like that tends to breed a special kind of person: tough enough to stay alive and smart enough to make the best of it. When that kind of person discovers he's being cheated of wealth he's risked his life for, that kind of planet is ripe for revolution. (Introduction from the Gutenberg text)
By: Arnold Bennett (1867-1931)
Ghost: A Modern Fantasy
The novel opens with Carl Foster, a recently qualified doctor, coming to London to try and make his fortune. He meets a famous tenor, Signor Alresca, who suffers a dreadful injury backstage and Foster tends to him. He thus meets the lead soprano, Rosetta Rosa, and falls hopelessly in love with her.Alresca takes Foster under his wing and they travel to Alresca's home in Bruges. It is clear to Foster that Alresca has some strange obsession. Foster also notices a stranger who seems to be dogging his footsteps.Things take an even more sinister turn when Alresca inexplicably dies. . .
By: John Bunyan
The Holy War
The Holy War is perhaps John Bunyan’s second most popular work, after The Pilgrim’s Progress. It tells the story of afierce battle to take control of a city from its rightful ruler.
By: J. M. Barrie (1860-1937)
His name has become a metaphor for one who will never grow old. Peter Pan by JM Barrie is the story of a boy who remains a boy while the world around him changes. Sir James Mathew Barrie was a Scottish playwright and novelist whose works were received with great critical and commercial success in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. He discovered the main inspiration for his creative genius in his friendship (and later guardianship) with the children of Arthur and Sylvia Llewellyn-Davies...
By: Charles Lamb
The Adventures of Ulysses
In The Adventures of Ulysses, Charles Lamb re-tells the story of Ulysses’s journey from Troy to his own kingdom of Ithaca. The book uses Homer’s The Odyssey as the basis for the story, but it isn’t a direct translation of the Greek classic. The book is considered a modern version of the epic tale when it was published in 1808. In the preface of the book, Lamb said that he made the narration of the story faster so that more readers would be attracted to it. To begin with, Homer’s Odyssey is already a classic and in re-telling this story, Charles Lamb aimed to make this epic poem more comprehensible to the average person...
By: Hugh Lofting (1886-1947)
The Voyages of Doctor Dolittle
The delightfully eccentric Doctor Dolittle, rendered immortal on screen by the gifted Rex Harrison, has remained a firm favorite with generations of children ever since he made his debut in an earlier novel, The Story of Doctor Dolittle. In his second outing titledThe Voyages of Doctor Dolittle, the maverick physician takes on a new assistant, Tommy Stubbins. The story is structured as a first person account given by Tommy, who is now a very old man. The boy who was the son of the village cobbler first meets Doctor Dolittle when he takes a hurt squirrel to the doctor for treatment...
The Story of Doctor Dolittle
An adventurous children’s novel, The Story of Doctor Dolittle is the first book in the Doctor Dolittle series. The novel depicts the many adventures of Dr. John Dolittle as he learns the language of animals and takes on various feats including exotic travel, a dangerous encounter with pirates, and a mission to set right from wrong. The novel begins with the introduction of Dr. John Dolittle, an animal lover and respected physician, who lives in the small English town of Puddleby-on-the-Marsh with his unmarried sister...
By: Andrew Lang (1844-1912)
The Pink Fairy Book
All people in the world tell nursery tales to their children, and the stories are apt to be like each other everywhere. A child who has read the Blue and Red and Yellow Fairy Books will find some old friends with new faces in the Pink Fairy Book. Courage, youth, beauty, kindness, have many trials, but they always win the battle; while witches, giants, unfriendly cruel people, are on the losing hand. So it ought to be, and so, on the whole, it is and will be; and that is all the moral of fairy tales...
By: Ayn Rand (1905-1982)
The title 'Anthem' is derived as an anthem to sense of self and self-governing thoughts. Anthem is a story of Equality 7-2521 who is a young man living in some unspecified future time and place. In this future era freedom and individual rights have been eradicated. The starring character of the novel is an inquisitive street cleaner. He lives in a society where people have lost their knowledge of individualism, to the extreme that people do not know words like 'I' or 'mine'. All the people live and work for their livelihood in collective groups, along with the people with power, namely the 'Councils'...
By: E. T. A. Hoffmann (1776-1822)
Ernst Theodor Wilhelm Hoffmann (1776 – 1822), better known by his pen name E.T.A. Hoffmann (Ernst Theodor Amadeus Hoffmann), was a German Romantic author of fantasy and horror, a jurist, composer, music critic, draftsman and caricaturist. Hoffmann's stories were very influential during the 19th century, and he is one of the major authors of the Romantic movement.He is the subject and hero of Jacques Offenbach's famous but fictional opera The Tales of Hoffmann, and the author of the novelette The Nutcracker and the Mouse King, on which the famous ballet The Nutcracker is based...
By: Joel Chandler Harris (1848-1908)
Uncle Remus and Brer Rabbit
Uncle Remus' stories feature a trickster hero called Br'er Rabbit ("Brother" Rabbit), who uses his wits to slide out of trouble and gain the advantage over the slower witted other animals, many of whom are trying to eat him. Br'er Rabbit stories were mostly collected directly from the afro-american oral story-telling tradition and are said to be a direct interpretation of Yoruba tales of Hare. This book contains 11 unique stories and was the last one published before the author's death. (Introduction by Phil Chenevert)
By: Murray Leinster (1896-1975)
The Mad Planet
It is 30,000 years following dramatically changed climate conditions on earth which had let massive amounts of carbon dioxide belch from the interior of the planet into the atmosphere. Over the millenia this would have quite devastating effects on life as it had once been known. Much of the human and animal population would not survive the climate change, and indeed those few humans who did survive knew nothing of all which their predecessors had learned and built. Indeed, they knew not even of their existence...
Operation: Outer Space
Jed Cochrane is about to take off on man's first interstellar voyage. His mission: Make sure it's good television! (Introduction by Mark Nelson)
By: Edith Nesbit (1858-1924)
The Book of Dragons
Eight enchanting tales about a variety of whimsical dragons, by a master of the craft, E Nesbit, are contained in this absolutely delightful volume, The Book of Dragons. While it's essentially meant for children, there are plenty of adults who will find it irresistible enough to peek into and a most charming way to spend a magical hour. Beautifully illustrated by the enormously talented Harold Robert Millar, the Scottish designer and illustrator famed for his unique and imaginative illustrations, The Book of Dragons is sure to delight both first time readers of the unique writer Edith Nesbit and those who have found pleasure in her other works...
The Phoenix and the Carpet
The Phoenix and the Carpet is a fantasy novel for children, written in 1904 by E. Nesbit. It is the second in a trilogy of novels that began with Five Children and It (1902), and follows the adventures of the same five protagonists – Cyril, Anthea, Robert, Jane and the Lamb. Their mother buys the children a new carpet to replace the one from the nursery that was destroyed in an unfortunate fire accident. Through a series of exciting events, the children find an egg in the carpet which cracks into a talking Phoenix. The Phoenix explains that the carpet is a magical one that will grant them three wishes per day.
Harding's luck is sequel to E. Nesbit's "The House of Arden". It tells the story of Dickie Harding, a disabled boy, who one day accidentelly discovers an old magic, that allows him to travel into his own past. There he meets Elfrida and Edred Arden (as told in "The House of Arden") and together they seek for a long lost treasure.
By: Montague R. James (1862-1936)
The Five Jars
The Five Jars is the only novel written by James, who is best known for his ghost stories. It is a peculiarly surreal fantasy apparently written for children. While he is out walking, the narrator is drawn to a remote pool, and finds a small box that has been hidden since Roman times. He gradually learns how to use its contents, fighting off a series of attempts to steal it, and becomes aware of a strange world hidden from our own.
By: Charles Kingsley (1819-1875)
First published in 1863, The Water Babies by Rev Charles Kingsley became a Victorian children's classic along with J.M. Barrie's Peter Pan and Lewis Caroll's Alice books. It is an endearing and entertaining novel that can equally be enjoyed by adult readers as well. However, it fell out of favor in later years since it contained many ideas that are considered politically incorrect and offensive today from a humanitarian perspective. The Water Babies, A Fairy Tale for a Land Baby to give the book its complete title tells the story of Tom, a young orphan chimney-sweep in Victorian London...
By: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930)
The Mystery of Cloomber
This novel is written by the author of, among other novels, the Stories of Sherlock Holmes. It is narrated by John Fothergill West, who tries to discover why the tenant of Cloomber Hall, General Heatherstone, is nervous to the point of being paranoid. Why are his fears becoming stronger every year at the fifth of October? And why doesn't he let his children leave home? This is a great mystery novel with a sharp twist at the end.
Doings of Raffles Haw
The people of the small town of Tamfield are not used to exciting things happening. When millionaire Raffles Haw moves to town, rumors spread like wildfire about him. The advent of Mr. Haw, however, changes the town, and particularly the lives of the McIntyre family, in ways no one could ever have guessed.
By: E.M. Berens
Myths and Legends of Ancient Greece and Rome
Silver footed, fair haired Thetis, Ares the God of War, Nike the Goddess of Victory, The Furies and The Muses, Zeus the presiding deity of the Universe and the magical, mysterious Olympus, are some of the amazing, mythical Greek and Roman deities you'll encounter in this book. Myths and Legends of Ancient Greece and Rome by EM Berens was originally intended for young readers. Written in an easy and light style, the author attempts to bring the pantheon of gods into a comprehensible format....
By: Robert E. Howard (1906-1936)
Conan the Cimmerian pursues the beautiful and deadly pirate Valeria after she kills a Stygian only to find himself cornered by a dragon. Apparently this dragon doesn’t know who he’s messing with. The pair then encounters the city of Xuchotl with its warring factions and ancient secrets. Swordplay and sorcery ensue. – Red Nails is Howard’s final Conan story and was published in the July, August, September and October 1936 issues of Weird Tales magazine
By: Edwin Abbott Abbott (1838-1926)
Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions
If you've never heard the term “Mathematical Fiction” before, Edwin Abbott Abbott's 1884 novella, Flatland can certainly enlighten you! Flatland: A Romance of Many Dimensions was published in 1884 and since then, it has been discovered and re-discovered by succeeding generations who have been delighted by its unique view of society and people. The plot opens with a description of the fictional Flatland. The narrator calls himself “Square” and asks readers to “Imagine a vast sheet of paper on which straight Lines, Squares, Triangles, Pentagons, Hexagons and other figures, instead of remaining fixed in their places, move freely about...
By: Eugene Field (1850-1895)
Love-Songs of Childhood
If you've heard and loved that delightful nursery rhyme/lullaby, Wynken Blynken and Nod you'd certainly enjoy browsing through its creator Eugene Field's Love Songs of Childhood. The volume contains some forty or more poems for children, which are ideal for read aloud sessions with young folks. Parents will certainly enjoy reading them too. Most of these poems have been set to music and are ideal for family sing-alongs too. Eugene Field was a gifted humorist as well as being a talented children's writer...
By: John Kendrick Bangs (1862-1922)
Alice in Blunderland: an Iridescent Dream
John Kendrick Bangs (May 27, 1862 – January 21, 1922) was an American author and satirist, and the creator of modern Bangasian Fantasy, the school of fantasy writing that sets the plot wholly or partially in the afterlife. (Wikipedia)Plot summary: J K Bangs has taken Alice from Lewis Carroll’s “Alice in Wonderland” and lets her on a boring day travel with the Mad Hatter, the March Hare, the Cheshire Cat and the other of Carroll’s familiar characters to Blunderland. The story is a well written Satire, a witty, humorous tale of adventure and city politics, a tale of Alice in a land where nothing is as it should be. (Summary by Lars Rolander)
A House-Boat on the Styx
The premise of the book is that everyone who has ever died (up until the time in which the book is set, which seems to be about the time of its publication) has gone to Styx. This does not appear to be the conventional Hell described by Dante in The Inferno, but rather the Hades described in Greek myth (both of which had Styxes): a universal collecting pot for dead souls, regardless of their deeds in life. The book begins with Charon, ferryman of the Styx (in The Inferno, he was the ferryman of the river Acheron) being startled—and annoyed—by the arrival of a house boat on the Styx...
The Pursuit of the House-Boat
This sequel to Bangs' A House-Boat on the Styx continues the "thought-experiment" of bringing various historical and fictional figures together, detailing the adventures of the ladies of Hades after they are kidnapped by pirates and the attempts of the Associated Shades (led by Sherlock Holmes) to retrieve their house-boat. (Introduction by Emma Joyce)
The author has discovered for us in this volume the present stopping place of that famous raconteur of dear comic memory, the late Hieronymous Carl Friederich, sometime Baron Munchausen, and he transmits to us some further adventures of this traveler and veracious relator of merry tales. There are about a dozen of these tales, and, judging by Mr. Bangs' recital of them, the Baron's adventures on this mundane sphere were no more exciting than those he has encountered since taking the ferry across the Styx...
The Enchanted Typewriter is a collection of short stories by the American author John Kendrick Bangs, written in 1899 in the style that has become known as Bangsian fantasy. Bangs attributes many of the stories to the late (and invisible) James Boswell, who has become an editor for a newspaper in Hades, and who communicates with the author by means of an old typewriter. The fantasy stories in this book are part of the author's Hades series, named for the stories' setting.
By: Maude L. Radford (1875-1934)
King Arthur and His Knights
Published in 1903, King Arthur and His Knights by Maude L. Radford is an easy to read version of the Arthurian legends, made simple and interesting for children. Maude Lavinia Radford Warren was a Canadian born American who taught literature and composition at the University of Chicago between 1893-1907. Following the success of some of her books, she left teaching to take up writing as a full time career. She also served as a war correspondent for the New York Times magazine during WWI and contributed several remarkable features on the role of women in the conflict...
By: Lord Dunsany (1878-1957)
The Book of Wonder
“Come with me, ladies and gentlemen who are in any wise weary of London: come with me: and those that tire at all of the world we know: for we have new worlds here.” – Lord Dunsany, the preface to “The Book of Wonder”
Time and the Gods
Lord Dunsany (24 July 1878 – 25 October 1957) was a London-born Anglo-Irish writer and dramatist notable for his work in fantasy. He was influenced by Algernon Swinburne, who wrote the line “Time and the Gods are at strife” in his 1866 poem “Hymn to Proserpine”, as well as by the fairy tales of the Brothers Grimm and Hans Christian Andersen. In turn, Dunsany’s influence was felt by H. P. Lovecraft and Ursula K. Le Guin. Arthur C. Clarke corresponded with Dunsany between 1944 and 1956. Those letters are collected in the book Arthur C. Clarke & Lord Dunsany: A Correspondence. Time and the Gods, a series of short stories written in a myth-like style, was first published in 1906.
By: Walter De la Mare (1873-1956)
Return (de la Mare version)
A story of psychological horror, The Return explores ideas of identity, love, and alienation. Arthur grapples with the reactions of his family and community, and his own sanity, when he experiences a sudden and mysterious "transformation". (
By: Miss Mulock
Adventures of a Brownie as Told to My Child
Adventures of a Brownie follows the life of a brownie who lives in a family’s coal cellar and the adventures he gets into with the members of the household. (Written by Ancilla)