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By: Victor Hugo (1802-1885)

Les Misérables by Victor Hugo Les Misérables

Victor Hugo's Les Misérables is a novel which tells the story of ex-convict Jean Valjean, his struggles and eventual redemption. It's hailed by many critics as not just Victor Hugo's finest work but also one of the best French novels of all time. Like most epic novels written in the 19th century, the storyline of Les Misérables spans through several decades beginning in the early 1800s and culminating in the 1832 June Rebellion in Paris. The events related to the lives of the central characters in the novel are also tied to the great historical events of the time from the French Revolution to the June Rebellion...

The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo The Hunchback of Notre Dame

One of the great literary tragedies of all time, The Hunchback of Notre Dame features some of the most well-known characters in all of fiction - Quasimodo, the hideously deformed bellringer of Notre-Dame de Paris, his master the evil priest Claude Frollo, and Esmeralda, the beautiful gypsy condemned for a crime she did not commit.

Toilers of the Sea by Victor Hugo Toilers of the Sea

This is the story of a man’s monumental struggle against nature, to win the hand of the woman he loves, and surmount every difficulty that Nature puts in his path

The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo The Man Who Laughs

The Man Who Laughs is a novel by Victor Hugo, originally published in April 1869 under the French title L'Homme qui rit. Also published under the title "By Order of the King". (Introduction by Wikipedia)

By: P. G. Wodehouse

The Adventures of Sally by P. G. Wodehouse The Adventures of Sally

Pretty, charming, but impoverished Sally Nicholas' humdrum life is turned upside down when fate decides to step in. In this breezy, romantic comedy, PG Wodehouse delights readers with his portrayal of a charming young American girl who unexpectedly inherits a fortune which changes her life forever. The story follows Sally's fortunes and is told in Wodehouse's typical humorous style and keeps the reader thoroughly entertained to the very end. First published in 1921 as a serial in Collier's Magazine in the US and in 1922 in the Grand Magazine, UK it appeared in book form titled Mostly Sally in 1922...

Right Ho, Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse Right Ho, Jeeves

If you're encountering the zany Bertie Wooster and his exceptionally astute Man Friday, Jeeves, for the first time, be assured that you're embarking on a lifetime of fun and laughter! On the other hand, for eternal Wodehouse fans, Right Ho Jeeves provides more glimpses of the delightful world created by one of the best loved English writers. It is the second in the series of Bertie Wooster and Jeeves novels and features some of the regular characters of Brinkley Court, the country seat ruled over by Bertie's much-loved Aunt Dahlia...

My Man Jeeves by P. G. Wodehouse My Man Jeeves

First published in 1919, My Man Jeeves is a collection of short stories featuring the well known fictional characters Jeeves and Bertie Wooster. The compilation consists of eight stories, of which four feature the popular duo while the other four stories feature Reggie Pepper, an early model of Bertie Wooster. Set in the early 20th century, the stories carry much humor, wit, and charming mischief as the characters seem to attract trouble wherever they go. Wodehouse sets the stories in the early 20th century and allows the audience to enter the world of the upper-class establishments, and experience the many awkward situations the characters find themselves in...

Love Among the Chickens by P. G. Wodehouse Love Among the Chickens

A young, but not too brilliant writer is conscripted by a ne'er-do-well friend to help out on a chicken farm in remote Dorset. While traveling to the country, the writer encounters a lovely young girl and her academician father on the train. He is delighted to discover that she is reading a copy of his latest book. In the countryside, he also discovers that the professor and his daughter are neighbors. However, over dinner one night, he gets into an acrimonious debate with the elderly scholar who storms out, furious with his daughter's potential suitor...

Something New by P. G. Wodehouse Something New

When the absent-minded Earl of Emsworth wanders off with the pride of his scarab collection, American millionaire J. Preston Peters is willing to pay $5000 to the person who can get it back for him. Discretion is necessary since Peters’ daughter is engaged to Emsworth’s son. Joan Valentine and Ashe Marson both decide to go after the reward—she as Aline Peter’s ladies maid, and he as Mr. Peter’s valet—and they all end up at Blandings Castle. But is it possible for anyone to steal back the scarab with The Efficient Baxter ever vigilant? This is, IMHO, one of Wodehouse’s funniest novels. –Debra Lynn

Psmith in the City by P. G. Wodehouse Psmith in the City

Mike’s dream of studying and playing cricket at Cambridge are thwarted as his father runs into financial difficulties. Instead, Mike takes on the job of clerk at the “New Asiatic Bank.” Luckily, school friend Psmith, with his boundless optimism and original views, soon joins his department, and together they endeavour to make the best of their new life in London.

A Wodehouse Miscellany; Articles and Stories by P. G. Wodehouse A Wodehouse Miscellany; Articles and Stories

Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse was an English comic writer who enjoyed enormous popular success for more than seventy years. Best known today for the Jeeves and Blanding Castle novels and short stories, Wodehouse was also a talented playwright and lyricist who was part author and writer of fifteen plays and of 250 lyrics for some thirty musical comedies.

A Damsel in Distress by P. G. Wodehouse A Damsel in Distress

A Damsel in Distress is a novel by P. G. Wodehouse, first published in the U.S. on October 4, 1919 by George H. Doran, New York, and in the U.K. by Herbert Jenkins, London, on October 17 1919. It had previously been serialised in The Saturday Evening Post, between May and June that year.Golf-loving American composer George Bevan falls in love with a mysterious young lady who takes refuge in his taxicab one day; when he tracks her down to a romantic rural manor, mistaken identity leads to all manner of brouhaha.

Three Men and a Maid by P. G. Wodehouse Three Men and a Maid

This book with two titles, Three Men and a Maid in the USA and The Girl on the Boat in the UK is a typical P.G. Wodehouse romantic comedy, involving, at various times: a disastrous talent quest, a lawyer with a revolver, a bulldog with a mind of his own and a suit of armour! The maid, or marriageable young woman, of the American title is red-haired, dog-loving Wilhelmina “Billie” Bennet. The three men are Bream Mortimer, a long-time friend and admirer of Billie, Eustace Hignett, a poet of sensitive disposition who is engaged to Billie at the opening of the tale, and Sam Marlowe, Eustace’s would-be-dashing cousin, who falls for Billie at first sight...

Indiscretions of Archie by P. G. Wodehouse Indiscretions of Archie

It wasn’t Archie’s fault really. It’s true he went to America and fell in love with Lucille, the daughter of a millionaire hotel proprietor and if he did marry her–well, what else was there to do?From his point of view, the whole thing was a thoroughly good egg; but Mr. Brewster, his father-in-law, thought differently, Archie had neither money nor occupation, which was distasteful in the eyes of the industrious Mr. Brewster; but the real bar was the fact that he had once adversely criticised one of his hotels...

Mike: A Public School Story by P. G. Wodehouse Mike: A Public School Story

This novel introduces the characters Mike Jackson and Psmith, who are featured in several of Wodehouse’s later works. It shows how the two characters first met each other as teenagers at boarding school. As Psmith doesn’t appear until about halfway through this book, it was later released as two separate books, Mike at Wrykyn and Mike and Psmith. There’s lots of cricket, but you don’t need to understand the game to enjoy the antics of these public school boys as they "rag" each other and the authorities.

A Man of Means by P. G. Wodehouse A Man of Means

A Man of Means is a collection of six short stories written in collaboration by P. G. Wodehouse and C. H. Bovill. The stories all star Roland Bleke, a nondescript young man to whom financial success comes through a series of “lucky” chances, the first from a win in a sweepstake he had forgotten entering. Roland, like many a timid young man seeks love and marriage. In this pursuit his wealth is regularly a mixed blessing. The plot of each story follows its predecessor, sometimes directly, and occasionally refer back to past events in Bleke’s meteoric career...

Selected Short Stories by P. G. Wodehouse Selected Short Stories

"A miscellaneous collection of short stories, not featuring any of Wodehouse's regular characters, most concern love and romance and, being Wodehouse, all are amusing."

The Swoop! by P. G. Wodehouse The Swoop!

The Swoop! tells of the simultaneous invasion of England by several armies — “England was not merely beneath the heel of the invader. It was beneath the heels of nine invaders. There was barely standing-room.” (ch. 1) — and features references to many well-known figures of the day, among them the politician Herbert Gladstone, novelist Edgar Wallace, actor-managers Seymour Hicks and George Edwardes, and boxer Bob Fitzsimmons.

Uneasy Money by P. G. Wodehouse Uneasy Money

Uneasy Money is a romantic comedy by P.G. Wodehouse, published during the First World War, it offers light escapism. More romantic but only a little less humorous that his mature works, it tells of the vicissitudes of poor Lord Dawlish, who inherits five million dollars, but becomes a serially disappointed groom. When the story opens Bill (Lord Dawlish, a thoroughly pleasant man) is engaged to a demanding actress. His first thought when hearing of his massive legacy from a stranger whose tendency to slice he once cured on a West Country golf course is of the disappointed relatives...

The Man With Two Left Feet, and Other Stories by P. G. Wodehouse The Man With Two Left Feet, and Other Stories

The Man With Two Left Feet, and Other Stories is a collection of short stories by P. G. Wodehouse, first published in the United Kingdom on March 8, 1917 by Methuen & Co., London, and in the United States in 1933 by A.L. Burt and Co., New York. All the stories had previously appeared in periodicals, usually the Strand in the UK and the Red Book magazine or the Saturday Evening Post in the US. It is a fairly miscellaneous collection — most of the stories concern relationships, sports and household...

Not George Washington by P. G. Wodehouse Not George Washington

It has been said that behind every successful man is a good woman. This is certainly true in the case of James Orlebar Cloyster. However, some funny things happened on his road to success. His story is humorously told from the point of view of several parties involved.According to Wikipedia, the book is a humorous, fictionalized account of Wodehouse's early years as a journalist, with Wodehouse being portrayed by the character of Cloyster.

Piccadilly Jim by P. G. Wodehouse Piccadilly Jim

A young red-head plots to kidnap her irritating cousin with the help of a former boxer, her uncle, and a rogue who has his eye on her. Things don't work out exactly as planned, as criminals, detectives and cases of mistaken identity all get in the way.

The Prince and Betty by P. G. Wodehouse The Prince and Betty

The Prince and Betty is a novel by P. G. Wodehouse. It was originally published in Ainslee's Magazine in the United States in January 1912, and, in a slightly different form, as a serial in Strand Magazine in the United Kingdom between February and April 1912, before being published in book form, in the UK only, by Mills & Boon, London, on 1 May that year. A substantially different version, which incorporated the plot of Psmith, Journalist, was published in the US by W. J. Watt, New York on 14 February 1912, and is the only version now widely available...

Psmith, Journalist by P. G. Wodehouse Psmith, Journalist

Psmith takes over editing a paper while the usual editor is away on vacation. He takes on a local slum lord, and divers alarums ensue. (description by Psuke Bariah)

Their Mutual Child by P. G. Wodehouse Their Mutual Child

Their Mutual Child (aka The Coming of Bill and The White Hope) is full of the loveable characters, preposterous situations, and opportunities to chuckle, if not outright laughs, that we expect from PG Wodehouse. It lacks the frantic slapstick of some Wodehouse comedy, but has a quieter more reflective humour. Kirk, the erstwhile hero, is a typical Wodehousian hero. At the beginning of the story, he is thoroughly likeable, a healthy, but a somewhat weak and malleable fellow. He dabs at beings a painter for a living, and runs with a gang of hangers-on, who sponge off him...

William Tell Told Again by P. G. Wodehouse William Tell Told Again

This is the classic story of William Tell - Swiss patriot and great apple-shooter - as seen through the eyes of English humorist P.G. Wodehouse. No Swiss were (permanently) injured in the telling of this story; however, results differed for Austrian tyrants. The original volume also included a humorous poem encapsulating the whole Tell legend, written by John W. Houghton to accompany the sixteen color illustrations. For this audiobook, the stanzas have been collected and read as a single poem. (Introduction by Mark F. Smith)

The White Feather by P. G. Wodehouse The White Feather

Sheen, a member of Seymour's House at Wrykyn School, flees from an unexpected assault by town boys. His colleagues wade into the fight with relish, acquiring bruises and sore heads, but in the fracas, Sheen is missed, and the story makes the rounds of Wrykyn that when blows were traded, Sheen "funked it." Honor in such institutions depends on reliably standing with your House. As punishment for his defection, Sheen is "cut" - treated as if he did not exist. In a later expedition into town, Sheen is set upon by the town bullies and finds that when retreat is no option, he can take their blows and fight against odds...

By: Eleanor H. Porter (1868-1920)

Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter Pollyanna

This is a timeless classic expressing the universal message that every aspect of life should be looked at in a positive way. It follows the actions of its protagonist, eleven-year old Pollyanna who goes to live with her stern Aunty Polly, where she faces many challenges with a smile on her face. The best-selling novel begins with the introduction of Pollyanna who goes to live in Vermont with her strict Aunt Polly after the death of her parents which have left her an orphan. The young heroine refuses to give in to her seemingly gloomy situation and instead chooses to look at the bright side of things...

Just David by Eleanor H. Porter Just David

A delightful story supporting the notion of finding beauty in all aspects of life, Just David follows a young boy, who slowly transforms the lives of those around him, as he teaches them to embrace the smaller things in life. The classic presents an encouraging tale to look beyond the horizon and not allow the world to dictate one’s action. The story begins with the introduction of a charismatic ten-year old boy David, who together with his father lives in the serene and secluded mountains...

Pollyanna Grows Up by Eleanor H. Porter Pollyanna Grows Up

Pollyanna, now cured of her crippling spinal injury, and able to walk again, goes to live in Boston with Mrs. Carew, a heart-broken woman searching for her lost nephew. Aunt Polly goes abroad with Pollyanna’s new Uncle, Dr. Chilton. While in Boston, Pollyanna meets new friends and has several interesting adventures… A startling change in Aunt Polly’s and Pollyanna’s circumstances require Pollyanna to come up with a workable solution. Pollyanna’s solution brings all her new friends from Boston and her old friends in Beldingsville together. Pollyanna also discovers she has to make a choice. Who will win her heart?

Oh, Money! Money! by Eleanor H. Porter Oh, Money! Money!

Mr. Stanley Fulton is worth millions, but he has no one to leave his money to except some unknown distant cousins. In order to find out how they would handle a fortune, he decides to give each of them $100,000 dollars during his life, and go – incognito - to live in their midst! Who will prove worthy to inherit his millions and will his deception be discovered?Eleanor H. Porter was an early 20th century author of children’s literature and novels. Her most well known book was “Pollyanna” and it’s sequel, “Pollyanna Grows Up”.

Miss Billy by Eleanor H. Porter Miss Billy

Mr. Neilson was determined to name his first child after his boyhood chum, William Henshaw. When the baby disappointed him by being a girl, he was consoled by naming her Billy. Miss Billy, now 18, orphaned and all alone in the world, takes her lawyer’s suggestion to ask her namesake to take her in. Only one little problem – Mr. Henshaw did not know of her existence, and then mistakenly thinks that Billy is a boy!Eleanor H. Porter was an early 20th century author of children’s literature and novels. Her most well known book was “Pollyanna” and it’s sequel, “Pollyanna Grows Up”.

Miss Billy's Decision by Eleanor H. Porter Miss Billy's Decision

When Miss Billy closed, Miss Billy and Bertram were happily engaged. In this first sequel to Miss Billy, will the path to wedded bliss run smooth or will misunderstandings and heartache cross their path? Find out in “Miss Billy’s Decision”!

By: Elizabeth Gaskell (1810-1865)

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell North and South

Mrs. Gaskell as she was popularly known, had a hard and lonely childhood, spent with various aunts and relatives after her mother died and her father left her. The young Elizabeth met and married a clergyman and moved to Manchester with him. It was here that she developed her strong sense of social justice and the themes which form the basis of her writing. Her biography of her dear friend Charlotte Bronte is considered a classic and provides a wonderfully human picture of the Yorkshire genius and her equally talented, tragic family...

Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell Wives and Daughters

This story opens with a young girl on a visit to a stately mansion, which is a local tourist attraction. Exhausted and waiting for the rest of the party to finish the tour, she falls asleep under a tree. She is discovered by the daughter of the house and the governess, who comfort her and put her to bed in the governess's room, promising to wake her before the tourists leave. However, the governess forgets and the girl is stranded in the mansion. Her father arrives to take her home. Many years later, her father brings the same governess home as his new wife...

The Grey Woman by Elizabeth Gaskell The Grey Woman

A “Bluebeard” story in which a young woman marries a man whom she discovers has killed his previous wives and is trying to kill her as well.

Mary Barton by Elizabeth Gaskell Mary Barton

Mary Barton is the first novel by English author Elizabeth Gaskell, published in 1848. The story is set in the English city of Manchester during the 1830s and 1840s and deals heavily with the difficulties faced by the Victorian lower class. The novel begins in Manchester, where we are introduced to the Bartons and the Wilsons, two working class families. John Barton reveals himself to be a great questioner of the distribution of wealth and the relation between the rich and the poor. He also relates how his sister-in-law Esther has disappeared after she ran away from home...

Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell Ruth

The book is a social novel, dealing with Victorian views about sin and illegitimacy. It is a surprisingly compassionate portrayal of a ‘fallen woman’, a type of person normally outcast from respectable society. The title of the novel refers to the main character Ruth Hilton, an orphaned young seamstress who is seduced and then abandoned by gentleman Henry Bellingham. Ruth, pregnant and alone, is taken in by a minister and his sister. They conceal her single status under the pretence of widowhood in order to protect her child from the social stigma of illegitimacy...

Cousin Phillis by Elizabeth Gaskell Cousin Phillis

Cousin Phillis (1864) is a novel by Elizabeth Gaskell about Paul Manning, a youth of seventeen who moves to the country and befriends his mother's family and his second cousin Phillis Holman, who is confused by her own placement at the edge of adolescence. Most critics agree that Cousin Phillis is Gaskell's crowning achievement in the short novel. The story is uncomplicated; its virtues are in the manner of its development and telling.

Book cover The Grey Woman and other Tales
Book cover My Lady Ludlow

This novella by the acclaimed Elizabeth Gaskell follows the reminiscences and life of aristocratic Lady Ludlow, told through the eyes of one of her charges, the young Margaret Dawson. Lady Ludlow epitomizes the unwillingness of the old English gentry to accept the progression of social reform and technology, such as education for the poor and religious leniency. She reminisces about her friends in the French revolution and tries to protect and guide the numerous young ladies she has taken under her care.

Book cover Dark Night's Work

Love, murder and class commentary in Mrs Gaskell's usual brilliant style! This novel was originally serialised and published by Charles Dickens, with whom Mrs Gaskell had several disagreements. She chose to avoid melodrama and concentrate on psychological realism to produce a moving story of people meeting and parting across class divides.

Book cover Doom of the Griffiths
Book cover Lizzie Leigh
Book cover Round the Sofa
Book cover Half a Life-Time Ago
Book cover An Accursed Race
Book cover The Poor Clare
Book cover The Half-Brothers

By: Gaston Leroux (1868-1927)

The Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux The Mystery of the Yellow Room

One of the first locked room mysteries, The Mystery of the Yellow Room focuses on a supposedly impossible crime which has been committed within a locked room. The novel was initially published in the French periodical L’illustration, and was later published as a book in 1908. It is the first of a series of novels featuring the famous fictional reporter Joseph Rouletabille. The mystery begins when Joseph Rouletabille, a reporter and amateur sleuth is sent to investigate a crime scene at the Château du Glandier, home to renowned chemist Joseph Stangerson...

The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux The Phantom of the Opera

A masterly mix of romance, drama, mystery, suspense, love and jealousy, The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux will haunt you long after you've turned the last page. Today the world knows it by Andrew Lloyd-Webber's long running musical on stage and its 2004 film adaptation, and earlier from Lon Chaney's screen portrayal of the dark intruder who roams the Paris Opera House. However, Gaston Leroux's novel was first released as a serial in the French magazine, La Gaulois over four months in 1909-10...

The Secret of the Night by Gaston Leroux The Secret of the Night

Gaston Leroux, perhaps best known as the author of The Phantom of the Opera in its novel form, was also the author of a popular series of mystery novels featuring a young journalist cum detective named Joseph Rouletabille. It is most likely that Leroux styled his hero after himself. Rouletabille was in the tradition of other great detectives who solved their cases by pure deductive reasoning. Much as Sherlock Holmes, who eliminated the impossible and concluded that whatever remained, however improbable must be the truth, Rouletabille included the known facts about the case and eliminated everything that was not a known fact, no matter how much it appeared to relate to the case...

By: Edith Wharton (1862-1937)

The Age of Innocence by Edith Wharton The Age of Innocence

If you've watched and loved Winona Ryder playing the innocent May Welland in the 1993 film adaptation of Edith Wharton's sweeping novel about class-consciousness in nineteenth century America, you will certainly enjoy reading the original. Though Martin Scorcese's brilliant work was certainly true to the spirit of the original novel, no film can reproduce the charm of language and turn of phrase employed by one of America's greatest writers. The Age of Innocence was Edith Wharton's 12th novel and is located in familiar Wharton territory...

Afterward by Edith Wharton Afterward

A short story classified under the American Gothic genre, the piece depicts an eerie set of events following the distressing occurrences within the Boyne household, as their dream relocation takes a drastic turn. Wharton cleverly weaves together Gothic themes including horror, retribution, and despair to create a dynamic plot which is additionally aided by the use of foreshadowing, an uncanny setting, and the reflective voice of its character. Divided into five parts, Afterward introduces newly rich couple Mary and Ned Boyne, who decide to make their dream move to England after Ned strikes a good business investment...

Ethan Frome by Edith Wharton Ethan Frome

Ethan Frome is a novel published in 1911 by the Pulitzer Prize-winning American author Edith Wharton. It is set in the fictitious town of Starkfield, Massachusetts, New England, where an unnamed narrator tells the story of his encounter with Ethan Frome, a man with dreams and desires that end in an ironic turn of events. (

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton The House of Mirth

Wharton's classic story of an aging (by Victorian-era standards) spinster socialite who would rather marry for money than for true love.

Summer by Edith Wharton Summer

Wharton's 1917 novella Summer, like her more famous work Ethan Frome, is set in a very small rural New England town. Charity Royall longs to escape the claustrophobic confines of North Dormer and the inappropriate advances of her guardian Mr. Royall, who adopted her as a child from the nearby Mountain community. Hope arrives in the form of city boy Lucius Harney, who has come to research the architecture of the region; but will his presence in Charity's life mean her salvation - or her undoing? (Introduction by Elizabeth Klett)

Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton Custom of the Country

Edith Wharton was a novelist of manners of late 19th Century New York “Society”, who spent much of her life in France. In this novel she tells the story of Undine Sprague, the thrice- (or more) married, upwardly mobile beauty from “Apex City”, transplanted to New York, and finally to France, leaving the dead and wounded in the wake of her “experiments in happiness”.

The Reef by Edith Wharton The Reef

George Darrow, Anna Leath’s first love, is finally coming from London to propose to her. However, he drifts to an affair with Sophy Viner, Anna’s daughter’s naïve and young governess. Sophy’s relationship with Darrow and Anna’s family can threaten his success. In this novel, as in many of Wharton’s other well known novels, we see the eternal love triangle. With her sly and lovely writing style, Wharton delivers to us in this wonderful novel a cast of unforgettable characters and many unforgettable scenes which we can vividly imagine. What would Darrow choose: success or love? Would Anna marry him despite his affair with Sophy? (Summary by Stav Nisser.)

Bunner Sisters by Edith Wharton Bunner Sisters

“Bunner Sisters,” like “The Age of Innocence” is set in 1870s New York, however the lives of Ann Eliza and Evelina Bunner reflect impoverished New York. The sisters run a “very small shop, in a shabby basement, in a sidestreet already doomed to decline.” Shabby as it is, the sisters are happy in their small orderly community of supportive women. The story tells of the destruction of this life, and how the once content sisters are thrown into the realistic world outside of their little shop.

The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton The Glimpses of the Moon

"The Glimpses of the Moon" (1922) is about Nick and Susy Lansing, both of whom live a decadent life in Europe by sponging off wealthy friends. They marry out of convenience and have an "open" relationship, but are unprepared for where their feelings will take them.

The Fruit of the Tree by Edith Wharton The Fruit of the Tree

When published in 1907, this novel about the lives of a wealthy mill owner, her socially progressive husband and friends caused a stir due to its treatment of drug abuse, mercy killing, divorce and second marriages.

The Touchstone by Edith Wharton The Touchstone

Stephen Glennard's career is falling apart and he desperately needs money so that he may marry his beautiful fiancee. He happens upon an advertisement in a London magazine promising the prospect of financial gain. Glennard was once pursued by Margaret Aubyn, a famous and recently deceased author, and he still has her passionate love letters to him. Glennard removes his name from the letters and sells them, making him a fortune and building a marriage based on the betrayal of another.

Sanctuary by Edith Wharton Sanctuary

Kate Orme, shocked by the discovery of her fiance's complicity in a tragedy, and by society's willingness to overlook such transgressions, nevertheless marries him. Years later, her son faces a moral crisis similar to the one that showed her his father's moral weakness. (Introduction by Christine Dufour)

The Greater Inclination by Edith Wharton The Greater Inclination

This is Edith Wharton's earliest published collection of short stories (1899). Like much of her later work, they touch on themes of marriage, male/female relationships, New York society, and the nature and purpose of art. One of the stories, "The Twilight of the God," is written as a short play. The role of Warland is read by mb, and the role of Oberville by Bruce Pirie.

Crucial Instances by Edith Wharton Crucial Instances

This is Edith Wharton's second published collection of short stories (1901). One of these seven stories, "Copy: A Dialogue," is written as a short play. The role of Hilda is read by Arielle Lipshaw, and the role of Ventnor by Mark F. Smith.

Madame de Treymes by Edith Wharton Madame de Treymes

Edith Wharton's 1907 novella explores the milieu of Americans living abroad in Paris. New Yorker John Durham travels to Paris to woo an old flame, Fanny Frisbee, now the Marquis de Malrive. Fanny is separated from her husband and wants to marry John and return to America, but she doubts whether her Catholic husband will grant her a divorce. When John meets Fanny's sister-in-law, the enigmatic Madame de Treymes, he hopes she may be able to help them in their quest for happiness. (Introduction by Elizabeth Klett)

Book cover Tales of Men and Ghosts

Tales of Men and Ghosts was published as a collection in 1910, though the first eight of the stories had earlier appeared in Scribner's and the last two in the Century Magazine. Despite the title, the men outnumber the ghosts, since only "The Eyes" and "Afterward" actually call on the supernatural. In only two of the stories are women the central characters, though elsewhere they play important roles. Wharton enjoys subjecting her subjects -- all of them American gentlemen and gentlewomen, in the conventional senses of the word -- to various moral tests and sometimes ironic tests...

Book cover The Valley of Decision
Book cover Xingu 1916
Book cover The Triumph Of Night 1916
Book cover The Choice 1916
Book cover Kerfol 1916
Book cover Autres Temps... 1916
Book cover The Long Run 1916

By: Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849)

The Murders in the Rue Morgue by Edgar Allan Poe 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 by Edgar Allan Poe 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 by Edgar Allan Poe 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.

Book cover The Fall of the House of Usher

By: James Joyce (1882-1941)

Ulysses by James Joyce Ulysses

Banned in the United States and United Kingdom throughout the 1920s, Ulysses turned conventional ideas of the novel inside out with its bold new form, style and theme. Deeply rooted in the Greek myth of the hero of the Trojan War, Joyce bases his novel on Ulysses or Odysseus, who is doomed to voyage for ten years before returning home to Ithaca. Joyce had been deeply influenced by the Iliad and the Odyssey, which he had read from Charles Lamb's adaptations as a child. In fact, he considered him the epitome of the heroic ideal and constantly thought of giving the myth a new dimension in modern literature...

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man

His family name is derived from a Greek craftsman who created the Labyrinth and designed wings for himself and his son to fly away from the island they were imprisoned in. But Stephen Dedalus, the young hero of James Joyce's first novel, is a young man who rises above his baser instincts and seeks a life devoted to the arts. This quintessential coming of age novel describes the early life of Stephen Dedalus. It is set in Ireland during the nineteenth century which was a time of emerging Irish nationalism and conservative Catholicism...

Dubliners by James Joyce Dubliners

A young boy falls in love with his friend's much older sister and is desperate to get her the perfect gift from the Araby Fair. After a party, a man discovers something he had never known about his wife, which has a devastating impact on their marriage. An ambitious mother schemes to get her daughter a role in a series of concerts. A drunken legal clerk takes out his frustrations on his helpless young son. These and other brilliant stories are contained in the collection entitled Dubliners...

The Dead by James Joyce The Dead

This novella is the final story in Joyce’s collection Dubliners. It describes a Christmas party given by Kate and Julia Morkan, two elderly Dublin ladies, that is attended by their nephew, Gabriel Conroy, and his wife. While the party is festive, full of dancing, drinking, and eating, it is also pervaded by political, religious, and sexual tensions, as well as memories of loss. When Gabriel and his wife go home at the end of the night, she reveals a long-kept secret that leads to an epiphany.

By: Giovanni Boccaccio (1313-1375)

The Decameron by Giovanni Boccaccio The Decameron

Giovanni Boccaccio’s The Decameron is a collection of novellas or short novels written during the 14th century. There are 100 tales contained in the book which is presented together. The book’s title The Decameron combines the two Greek words “deka” meaning ten and “hemera” meaning day. The title can be literally translated as “ten day,” which is also the time frame in which the stories are told by the 7 young women and 3 young men. In the book, each of the ten persons took their turns to tell stories for a day...

By: H. Rider Haggard (1856-1925)

King Solomon's Mines by H. Rider Haggard King Solomon's Mines

King Solomon’s Mines is the story of the leader Allan Quatermain and his adventurous group of followers on their mission to find the lost brother of an aristocrat, Sir Henry Curtis. Considered similar to Robert Louise Stevenson’s novel Treasure Island, Haggard’s book proved to be another must-read adventure novel in the international literary world. The African desert hides underneath its sands myths and legends that lasted for centuries in the minds of the locals. Quatermain has a mysterious map that could lead to the ancient mines of the wise King Solomon...

Allan Quatermain by H. Rider Haggard Allan Quatermain

“An Adventurer – He that goes out to meet whatever may come!” This is the credo of Allan Quatermain, the quintessential, swashbuckling protagonist of Allan Quatermain by H. Rider Haggard. Quatermain first makes his appearance as a character in Haggard's most famous bestselling adventure tale, King Solomon's Mines. Published in 1885, this Victorian action novel depicts a group led by Allan Quatermain who travel to a remote region in Africa in search of the missing brother of one of them. It is considered the very first English adventure tale set in what was perhaps disparagingly then called the “Dark Continent...

Heart of the World by H. Rider Haggard Heart of the World

Set in the heart of Central America, the adventure novel accounts an enthralling tale marked by zealous adventure, discovery of a lost civilization, and unconditional love. Published in 1895, Heart of the World presents a fusion of suspense, foreshadowing, legend, unforeseen twists, and endearing characters to create a piece highly valuable in the world of fiction. Narrated by an elderly Ignatio on his deathbed, the novel recounts his great escapade alongside Englishman James Strickland as they venture off in search of a lost civilization...

She by H. Rider Haggard She

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. ...

Allan's Wife by H. Rider Haggard Allan's Wife

The story of Allan Quatermain's wife and further adventures of Allan Quatermain.

Book cover Allan and the Holy Flower

Further adventures of Allan Quatermain

The Tale of Three Lions by H. Rider Haggard The Tale of Three Lions

Taking place in the heart of Africa, “The Tale of Three Lions” is one more thrilling adventure from the eventful life of old hunter Quartermain, the famous hero of “King Solomons Mines”. This time, though there are no bloodthirsty people for the old hunter to deal with, the dangers are no less. He has to face the mighty and fierce King of Animals – the Lion.

Colonel Quaritch, V.C.: A Tale of Country Life by H. Rider Haggard Colonel Quaritch, V.C.: A Tale of Country Life

This is not your typical H. Rider Haggard adventure book yet it is full of mystery and intrigue including a coerced marriage, bigotry, adultery, murder and a buried treasure! This is the tale of an ancient family’s struggles to survive, one woman’s selflessness and another’s evil schemes; Two Gentlemen, two scoundrels and one very underestimated, loyal servant. Listen as the tale unfolds and guess where the treasure is hidden that can save them all!

The Ivory Child by H. Rider Haggard The Ivory Child

Allan Quatermain's first adventure with Lord Ragnall. (Introduction by laineyben)

Book cover The Wizard

Described by the author, best known for his King Solomon's Mines, as "a tale of victorious faith," this story begins on a Sunday afternoon in an English church. Most of the book, though, is set in Africa, and the adventure story is as engaging as any of Haggard's African tales. What makes this one different is the religious question: What has happened to miracles in the church? Is there any power left in Jesus' promise, "Whoso that believeth in me, the works that I do he shall do also, and whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do"?

Black Heart and White Heart by H. Rider Haggard Black Heart and White Heart

Black Heart and White Heart, is a story of the courtship, trials and final union of a pair of Zulu lovers in the time of King Cetywayo. (Introduction by H. Rider Haggard)

Book cover Eric Brighteyes

The Saga of Eric Brighteyes is the title of an epic viking novel by H. Rider Haggard, and concerns the adventures of its eponymous principal character in 10th century Iceland. Eric Thorgrimursson (nicknamed 'Brighteyes' for his most notable trait), strives to win the hand of his beloved, Gudruda the Fair. Her father Asmund, a priest of the old Norse gods, opposes the match, thinking Eric a man without prospects. But deadlier by far are the intrigues of Swanhild, Gudruda's half-sister and a sorceress who desires Eric for herself. She persuades the chieftain Ospakar Blacktooth to woo Gudrida, making the two men enemies. Battles, intrigues, and treachery follow.

By: Stephen Leacock

Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town by Stephen Leacock Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town

Known as the Canadian Mark Twain, Stephen Leacock was a humorist whose gentle parodies and spoofs still evoke a smile and a chuckle more than a hundred years after they were first published. Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town was published in 1912. Set in the fictional town of Mariposa in Canada, which is peopled by a delightful assortment of characters, the book has proved to be an enduring classic in the humor genre. Readers around the world continue to enjoy these little stories about the inhabitants of Mariposa because Leacock portrays people whom we have all met at some time or the other in our own lives...

Frenzied Fiction by Stephen Leacock Frenzied Fiction

From the cave man to Santa Claus; spies, know-it-alls, and journalists: all are fair game for Leacock’s special brand of humor. He touches on the changes time has brought about in the city, education, and work habits. Among the other topics in this work are nature, fishing, gardening, success, and spirits–both of the departed and of the variety Prohibition prohibited. Each chapter of this book is a standalone story and if you love a good laugh, these stories are for you. In me, Leacock’s wit produced the full range of laughter: smiles, chuckles, guffaws, and some uncontrollable giggles. Also, occasionally, I found myself shedding a tear or two. (Review by Debra Lynn)

Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich by Stephen Leacock Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich

“Arcadian Adventures with the Idle Rich” is a work of humorous fiction by Stephen Leacock first published in 1914. It is the follow-up to his 1912 classic “Sunshine Sketches of a Little Town.” Like that work, it is a sequence of interlocking stories set in one town, but instead of focusing on a small Canadian town in the countryside, it is set in a major American metropolis and its characters are the upper crust of society. Although currently not as well-known as the earlier book, “Arcadian Adventures” was extremely popular in North America at the time of its publication and for a while was considered the greater success...

Winsome Winnie and other New Nonsense Novels by Stephen Leacock Winsome Winnie and other New Nonsense Novels

Eight silly stories by Canadian humourist Stephen Leacock.


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