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By: Christopher Morley (1890-1957)

Book cover Mince Pie

Mince Pie is a compilation of humorous sketches, poetry, and essays written by Christopher Morley. Morley sets the tone in the preface: "If one asks what excuse there can be for prolonging the existence of these trifles, my answer is that there is no excuse. But a copy on the bedside shelf may possibly pave the way to easy slumber. Only a mind "debauched by learning" (in Doctor Johnson's phrase) will scrutinize them too anxiously."

By: William Hope Hodgson (1877-1918)

The House on the Borderland by William Hope Hodgson The House on the Borderland

In 1877, two gentlemen, Messrs Tonnison and Berreggnog, head into Ireland to spend a week fishing in the village of Kraighten. While there, they discover in the ruins of a very curious house a diary of the man who had once owned it. Its torn pages seem to hint at an evil beyond anything that existed on this side of the curtains of impossibility. This is a classic novel that worked to slowly bridge the gap between the British fantastic and supernatural authors of the later 19th century and modern horror fiction. Classic American horror writer H. P. Lovecraft lists this and other works by Hodgson among his greatest influences.

By: Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol

Dead Souls by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol Dead Souls

Dead Souls by Nikolai Gogol, Russian writer, was first published in 1842, and is one of the most prominent works of 19th-century Russian literature. Gogol himself saw it as an “epic poem in prose”, and within the book as a “novel in verse”. Despite supposedly completing the trilogy’s second part, Gogol destroyed it shortly before his death. Although the novel ends in mid-sentence (like Sterne’s Sentimental Journey), it is usually regarded as complete in the extant form. In Russia before the emancipation of the serfs in 1861, landowners were entitled to own serfs to farm their land...

By: John R. Watson

The Hampstead Mystery by John R. Watson The Hampstead Mystery

A Murder Whodunit!Location: Hampstead, England.Victim: Sir Horace Fewbanks, a distinguished High Court judge. Cause of death: gun shot wound.Investigator: Private Detective Crewe, a wealthy bachelor who has taken up crime detection as a hobby, because it provides intellectual challenges more satisfying even than playing twelve simultaneous boards against Russian chess champion Turgieff.His sidekick: Joe is a fourteen year old Cockney boy, whom Crewe saved from a life of crime by hiring him as a messenger-boy and shadower.Other whodunit elements: clues galore, suspects in abundance, an inquest, a trial, and an elegant resolution.

By: Jacob Grimm (1785-1863), Wilhelm Grimm (1786-1859), and Andrew Lang (1844-1912) (1785-1863)

Personal Collection of Short Tales  compiled by Carmie by Jacob Grimm (1785-1863), Wilhelm Grimm (1786-1859), and Andrew Lang (1844-1912) Personal Collection of Short Tales compiled by Carmie

This is a selection of the fairy tales (in English) written by Jacob Ludwig Carl Grimm and Wilhelm Karl Grimm in the early 19th Century. These stories are fantastical and although aimed squarely at the flexible mind of a child which can assimilate much stranger concepts than an adult they are quite dark and occasionally brutal. The stakes can be quite high as in Rumpelstiltskin where a terrible bargain is made without due regard to possible future consequences and Tom Thumb who seems forever about to be imprisoned or sliced in two...

By: Edmund Clerihew Bentley (1875-1956)

Trent's Last Case by Edmund Clerihew Bentley Trent's Last Case

This is one of a series of EC Bentley novels featuring the highly erudite artist qua reporter / detective, Philip Trent.In it, Trent is sent to a charming English seaside village to cover the murder of Sigsbee Manderson for a large London newspaper. The victim is an unpopular and extremely powerful financial tycoon, who is murdered virtually within sight of his own house, at a time when it seems impossible that anyone there – to say nothing of all of its more than half dozen inhabitants – could have failed to see or hear the crime being committed...

By: Dorothy Canfield Fisher

Understood Betsy by Dorothy Canfield Fisher Understood Betsy

Elizabeth Ann is a timid, sickly little girl who lives with her Aunt Frances and her Great-Aunt Harriet. When Great-Aunt Harriet becomes ill, poor little Elizabeth Ann is sent to live with the much-feared Putney cousins, whom, as Great-Aunt Harriet said “Such lack of sympathy, such perfect indifference to the sacred sensitiveness of child-life, such a starving of the child-heart … No, I shall never forget it! They had chores to do … as though they had been hired men!” But to the Putney cousins in Vermont Elizabeth Ann has to go...

By: James Hay (1881-1936)

No Clue!  A Mystery Story by James Hay No Clue! A Mystery Story

“No Clue! A Mystery Story” finds detective Jefferson Hastings at the home of wealthy but eccentric Arthur Sloane one hot summer night, when two other guests at Sloanehurst stumble across the body of young Mildred Brace lying dead on the lawn. Sloane’s daughter Lucille asks Hastings to help solve the crime, but Hastings gets surprisingly little help from anybody he interviews, including Mr. Sloane himself and even the mother of the victim. With few clues to aid him and nobody beyond suspicion,...

By: Marcel Proust (1871-1922)

Book cover Swann's Way (Version 2)

Swann's Way is the first book in the seven-volume work In Search of Lost Time, or Remembrance of Things Past, by Marcel Proust. It is a novel written in the form of an autobiography. Proust's most prominent work, it is popularly known for its length and the notion of involuntary memory, the most famous example being the "episode of the madeleine."

Book cover Swann's Way (Version 2)

Swann's Way is the first book in the seven-volume work In Search of Lost Time, or Remembrance of Things Past, by Marcel Proust. It is a novel written in the form of an autobiography. Proust's most prominent work, it is popularly known for its length and the notion of involuntary memory, the most famous example being the "episode of the madeleine."

By: John Meade Falkner (1858-1932)

Moonfleet by John Meade Falkner Moonfleet

The novel is set in a fishing village in Dorset during the mid 18th century. The story concerns a 15 year old orphan boy, John Trenchard, who becomes friends with an older man who turns out to be the leader of a gang of smugglers.One night John chances on the smugglers’ store in the crypt beneath the church. He explores but hides behind a coffin when he hears voices. He finds a locket which contains a parchment, in the coffin belonging to Colonel Mohune. Unfortunately after the visitors leave,...

The Lost Stradivarius by John Meade Falkner The Lost Stradivarius

The Lost Stradivarius (1895), by J. Meade Falkner, is a short novel of ghosts and the evil that can be invested in an object, in this case an extremely fine Stradivarius violin. After finding the violin of the title in a hidden compartment in his college rooms, the protagonist, a wealthy young heir, becomes increasingly secretive as well as obsessed by a particular piece of music, which seems to have the power to call up the ghost of its previous owner. Roaming from England to Italy, the story involves family love, lordly depravity, and the tragedy of obsession

By: James Otis (1848-1912)

Richard of Jamestown: A Story of the Virginia Colony by James Otis Richard of Jamestown: A Story of the Virginia Colony

Richard of Jamestown by James Otis was written for children with the purpose to show them the daily home life of the Virginia colonists. It is written from the viewpoint of a young boy named Richard Mutton.

Ruth of Boston: A Story of the Massachusetts Bay Colony by James Otis Ruth of Boston: A Story of the Massachusetts Bay Colony

James Otis wrote a series of books depicting life in the new colonies, written from a child’s point of view. Ruth of Boston is the story of 12 year old Ruth, coming from London to live in the Massachusetts Bay Colony. It gives accounts of what a girl’s daily life might have been like during the beginnings of this colony.

Book cover Toby Tyler or Ten Weeks with a Circus

Toby Tyler tells the story of a ten year-old orphan who runs away from a foster home to join the traveling circus only to discover his new employer is a cruel taskmaster. The difference between the romance of the circus from the outside and the reality as seen from the inside is graphically depicted. Toby's friend, Mr. Stubbs the chimpanzee, reinforces the consequences of what happens when one follows one's natural instincts rather than one's intellect and conscience, a central theme of the novel.

By: Edward Elmer Smith (1890-1965)

Masters of Space by Edward Elmer Smith Masters of Space

The Masters had ruled all space with an unconquerable iron fist. But the Masters were gone. And this new, young race who came now to take their place–could they hope to defeat the ancient Enemy of All?

By: Louis Hémon (1880-1913)

Maria Chapdelaine by Louis Hémon Maria Chapdelaine

Maria Chapdelaine is one of the most famous French Canadian novels. It is the love story of Maria Chapdelaine, daughter of a peasant family in the Saguenay-Lac-St-Jean region of Quebec, in the 1900s. It is often seen as an allegory of the French Canadian people, describing simple joys and great tragedies, the bonds of family, the importance of faith, and the strength of body and spirit needed to endure the harshness of life in Canada’s northern wilderness.

By: Johnny Gruelle (1880-1938)

Raggedy Ann Stories by Johnny Gruelle Raggedy Ann Stories

To the millions of children and grown-ups who have loved a Rag Doll, the author dedicated these stories. Now listen as Shannon reads to you Raggedy Ann’s exciting adventures; as gentle and charming today, as they were when first published in 1918. Find out what is written on her candy heart, what was the gift the fairies brought, and all about Raggedy Ann’s new sisters.

By: Saint Patrick (d. 461 or 493)

Collected Works of Saint Patrick by Saint Patrick Collected Works of Saint Patrick

St. Patrick’s Breastplate – This prayer is attributed to St. Patrick and his diciples. It is written with some celtic pagan elements, but is definitely a Christian prayer asking God for protection through daily life. A Letter to the Soldiers of Coroticus – Patrick writes this letter to excommunicate the soldiers of Coroticus’ army who pillaged villages in Ireland and forced many Christian converts into slavery. Confession – A short autobiography by St. Patrick who tells of being abducted...

By: U. Waldo Cutler

Stories of King Arthur and His Knights by U. Waldo Cutler Stories of King Arthur and His Knights

Stories of King Arthur and His Knights. Retold from Malory’s “Morte dArthur”.

By: E.E. “Doc” Smith (1890-1965)

Triplanetary by E.E. “Doc” Smith Triplanetary

“Doc” E.E. Smith pretty much invented the space opera genre, and Triplanetary is a good and well-known example. Physics, time, and politics never stand in the way of a plot that gallops ahead without letup. Having earned a PhD in chemical engineering, it’s understandable that the heroes of Smith’s story are all scientists. He didn’t want to be constrained by the limits of known science, however, so in his hands the electromagnetic spectrum becomes a raw material to be molded into ever-more amazing and lethal forms, and the speed of light is no bar to traveling through the interstellar void...

By: Donald McGibney

32 Caliber by Donald McGibney 32 Caliber

The recent interest that's being generated in the pulp fiction writers of the 1920s has lead to many of the books of that genre being resurrected and read once again. For modern-day readers, these represent what are now called “airport-lounge reads” and ideal for those few hours that you have to kill waiting in an airport or railway station, while traveling or on holiday, when you don't want anything too heavy to weigh you down! Pulp fiction, so called because the books were generally printed on cheaper paper made from recycled wood pulp, had certain characteristics...

By: Sarah Cory Rippey

The Goody-Naughty Book by Sarah Cory Rippey The Goody-Naughty Book

The Goody-Naughty Book was originally published as two books back to back. Opening the book from one end, the reader experiences “The Goody Side” where the children are polite and thoughtful. However, turning the book over and beginning from the other side, one reads “The Naughty Side” where the children are lazy and irritable. These short, moral stories teach children the proper way to behave and that there are consequences if they don’t.

By: Ethel C. Pedley (1859-1898)

Dot and the Kangaroo by Ethel C. Pedley Dot and the Kangaroo

Dot and the Kangaroo, written in 1899, is a children’s book by Ethel C. Pedley about a little girl named Dot who gets lost in the Australian outback and is eventually befriended by a kangaroo and several other marsupials.

By: Luis Vaz de Camões (1524-1580)

The Lusiads by Luis Vaz de Camões The Lusiads

The Lusiads (Os Lusíadas) is a Portuguese epic poem, written in the 16th century by Luis Vaz de Camões. The poem tells the tale of the Portuguese discoveries in the 15th and 16th centuries, specially the voyage to India by Vasco da Gama. Modelled after the classic epic tradition, Camões' Lusiads are considered not only the first literary text in Modern Portuguese, but also a national epic of the same level as Vergil's Aeneid. In the 19th century, Sir Richard Francis Burton translated Camões' Lusiads, in what he considered "the most pleasing literary labour of his life".

By: John Burroughs (1837-1921)

Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers by John Burroughs Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers

Squirrels and other Fur-Bearers, a collection of essays by American naturalist and essayist, John Burroughs, provides fascinating insight into the daily life of small woodland creatures. Included in these essays are Burrough’s personal observations of squirrels, rabbits, mink, and chipmunks, as well as numerous other small mammals. Highly recommended for anyone, both young and old, with an interest in nature and wildlife!

Nature Near Home and Other Papers by John Burroughs Nature Near Home and Other Papers

Nature Near Home is one of many books on natural history by John Burroughs. It is full of simple observations about rural scenes and charming stories about animals, plants, and even people! Burroughs loves the creatures around him and derives great pleasure from his walks and studies in nature’s scenes.

By: Erskine Childers (1870-1922)

The Riddle of the Sands by Erskine Childers The Riddle of the Sands

Containing many realistic details based on Childers’ own sailing trips along the German North Sea coast, the book is the retelling of a yachting expedition in the early 20th century combined with an adventurous spy story. It was one of the early invasion novels which predicted war with Germany and called for British preparedness. The plot involves the uncovering of secret German preparations for an invasion of the United Kingdom. It is often called the first modern spy novel, although others are as well, it was certainly very influential in the genre and for its time...

By: Ada Cambridge (1844-1926)

Sisters by Ada Cambridge Sisters

Ada Cambridge (November 21, 1844 – July 19, 1926), later known as Ada Cross, was an English born Australian writer. While she gained recognition as Australia’s first woman poet of note, her longer term reputation rests on her novels. Overall she wrote more than twenty-five works of fiction, three volumes of poetry and two autobiographical works.[1] Many of her novels were serialised in Australian newspapers, and were never published in book form. The story pans over three – four decades revolving the four Pennycuick sisters.

By: Thomas Henry Huxley (1825-1895)

Has a Frog a Soul? by Thomas Henry Huxley Has a Frog a Soul?

Thomas Huxley, known as “Darwin’s Bulldog” for his championing and development of Darwinism, was perhaps the most important Victorian biologist after Darwin himself. This speech to the Metaphysical Society in 1870 is one of Huxley’s best known texts outside the sphere of his specialism, and remains read today by students of philosophy. In it, Huxley argues from the results of vivisection to metaphysics.

By: H Rider Haggard

She and Allan by H Rider Haggard She and Allan

H Rider Haggard’s “She and Allan”, first published in 1921 is a gripping adventure about Allan Quatermain, who together with Hans, the Hottentot and, the Zulu-Chief Omslopogaas and at the bidding of the old Witch Doctor Zikali seeks out Ayesha, the daughter of Isis to find answers to their questions about life and death, and their many, sometimes strange, Adventures on their way. Written by Lars Rolander

By: Eleanor M. Ingram (1886-1921)

The Thing from the Lake by Eleanor M. Ingram The Thing from the Lake

To get away from city life periodically, New Yorker Roger Locke purchases an abandoned farm house in rural Connecticut, and with the assistance of his cousin Phillida and her beau Ethan Vere, he sets about fixing up the place. Immediately however, an unseen mysterious woman begins giving him warnings during nocturnal visits to leave the house at once. Soon he begins hearing strange ominous sounds emanating from the tiny lake at the back of the house coupled with a permeation of sickly odors. An evil presence then begins to visit him during the witching hours of the late night, challenging him to a battle of wits from which there can be only one victor...

By: Laura Rountree Smith (1876-1924)

Little Bear by Laura Rountree Smith Little Bear

A story for children about a little bear with no name, “there were not enough names to go round,” and his adventures in finding one.

By: Abraham Merritt

The Metal Monster by Abraham Merritt The Metal Monster

The Metal Monster is an Abraham Merritt fantasy novel.Dr. Goodwin is on a botanical expedition in the Himalayas. There hemeets Dick Drake, the son of one of his old science acquaintances. They are witnesses of a strange aurora-like effect, but seemingly a deliberate one. As they go out to investigate, they meet Goodwin’s old friends Martin and Ruth Ventnor, brother and sister scientists. The two are besieged by Persians as Darius III led when Alexander of Macedon conquered them more than two thousand years ago.(Wikipedia)

The Moon Pool by Abraham Merritt The Moon Pool

Dr. David Throckmartin’s scientific expedition to the South Sea Islands discovers among ancient ruins a portal into Muria, an unknown underground world. After the disappearance of Throckmartin, his wife and two companions, his old friend Dr. Walter Goodwin enters Muria with a rescue party, only to confront an fantastic world filled with incredible beings, astounding scientific advances, and the worship of the most evil of all creatures, The Dweller. (Introduction by Mark Nelson)

By: Grant Allen

The Woman Who Did by Grant Allen The Woman Who Did

Most times, especially in the time when this book was written (1895), it is just as nature and society would wish: a man and woman “fall in love” and get married. But it is not so for Herminia Barton and Alan Merrick. They do indeed fall in love, but Herminia has a deeply held belief in freedom for women, and she holds immutable views against what she perceives as the slavery of marriage.Alan unwillingly agrees to her strong wish to remain unmarried and to live together as “close and dear friends”...

The British Barbarians by Grant Allen The British Barbarians

After Civil Servant Philip Christy crosses paths with the mysterious Bertram Ingledew in the respectable suburb of Brackenhurst, Philip and his sister Frida, married to the wealthy Scot Robert Monteith, become friends with the stranger. Bertram has some unconventional concepts about society, and as the story unfolds, his beliefs and actions cause much disruption in the family and the neighbourhood.Who is Bertram? Where does he come from? Allen explores some interesting ideas about society, some of which are curiously relevant today...

Hilda Wade, A Woman With Tenacity of Purpose by Grant Allen Hilda Wade, A Woman With Tenacity of Purpose

In this early detective novel, the detective is Hilda Wade. She is a very capable nurse, but there is something mysterious about her from the moment she arrives at the hospital. Upon meeting her, Dr. Hubert Cumberledge greatly admires her and becomes a devoted friend. It turns out that Hilda has one purpose in life, and in pursuit of that purpose she will travel across the world, from London to South Africa, Rhodesia, India, Nepaul, Tibet and back. With Cumberledge's support, her extraordinary logic and clear thinking lead her on through deadly perils. But will that be enough to accomplish the secret purpose which has driven her so long and so far?

The Type-Writer Girl by Grant Allen The Type-Writer Girl

“There is no more pathetic figure in our world to-day than the common figure of the poor young lady, crushed between classes above and below, and left with scarce a chance of earning her bread with decency.” So says Juliet Appleton’s boss, encouraging her to put her story into print. How will this college-educated 23-year-old survive the Darwinian Battle of Life in late Victorian England? She’s fundless in London but armed, by way of adaptive structures, with those two high-tech devices of the day: a bicycle for mobility and a typewriter for utility.

Miss Cayley's Adventures by Grant Allen Miss Cayley's Adventures

Fun stories of Miss Lois Cayley, independent young woman, as she, beginning with only twopence in her pocket, travels the world.

By: William H. Hudson

Green Mansions: A Romance of the Tropical Forest by William H. Hudson Green Mansions: A Romance of the Tropical Forest

“Green Mansions: A Romance of the Tropical Forest” is a narration of his life story by Abel, a Venezuelan, to a comrade. Once a wealthy young man, he meddled in politics to the extent of provoking a revolution… which failed.Escaping into the tropical forests of Guyana Abel takes up gold hunting, then journal-writing, and fails at both. Now with no aim for his life, he drifts until he takes up residence with a remote Indian tribe. Soon he learns of a wood the Indians avoid, as it is inhabited by a dangerous Daughter of the Didi, who, they say, slew one of them with magic...

By: W. M. Flinders Petrie

Egyptian Tales, translated from the Papyri, Series One by W. M. Flinders Petrie Egyptian Tales, translated from the Papyri, Series One

Brief, and in some cases incomplete, stories of magic from ancient Egypt.

By: Edward George Bulwer-Lytton (1803-1873)

The Coming Race by Edward George Bulwer-Lytton The Coming Race

Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton (1803-1873) was an English novelist, poet, playright, and politician. Lord Lytton was a florid, popular writer of his day, who coined such phrases as “the great unwashed”, “pursuit of the almighty dollar”, “the pen is mightier than the sword”, and the infamous incipit “It was a dark and stormy night.” Despite his popularity in his heyday, today his name is known as a byword for bad writing. San Jose State University holds...

By: Adele Garrison

Revelations of a Wife by Adele Garrison Revelations of a Wife

Adele Garrison was the nom de plume of Nana Springer White, an American writer. Her career included time as a schoolteacher in Milwaukee. She later worked as an editor for the Milwaukee Sentinel and then a reporter and writer for the Chicago Examiner and Chicago American. “Revelations of a Wife” ran as a serial story in her daily newspaper column in multiple American newspapers from 1915 until the Depression. It told the story of the marital ups and downs of Margaret “Madge” Graham, an independent-minded former schoolteacher, and her husband Dicky, an artist. At the height of the story’s popularity, it had one million regular readers.

By: Publius Ovidius Naso

Heroides by Publius Ovidius Naso Heroides

The Heroides, also known as the Heroines, the Letters of the Heroines or simply as Epistles are a very famous collection of poems by Ovid, not only for their interesting subject – letters by famous mythological characters addressed to their beloved ones – but also because it’s considered by some the first example of the Epistle as a literary genre – a statement made by Ovid himself in his Ars Amatoria. The book as we have it nowadays consists of 21 letters, divided in two parts. The first...

By: Edith Œnone Somerville (1858-1949)

Some Experiences of an Irish R.M. by Edith Œnone Somerville Some Experiences of an Irish R.M.

This is the first of three novels which Edith Somerville and her cousin Violet Martin wrote about the English Major Sinclair Yates who leaves the army to take up a position of Resident Magistrate in the West of Ireland in about 1895. The tales tell in a humorous way of his struggles with a new job, new culture, and with his landlord and neighbour Mr. ‘Flurry’ Knox whose prime, if not only, interest is in hunting, which forms the background to all the stories. Miss Somerville was herself the first woman anywhere to become an M.F.H.

By: Charlotte Perkins Gilman (1860-1935)

Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman Herland

Herland is a utopian novel from 1915, written by feminist Charlotte Perkins Gilman. The book describes an isolated society comprised entirely of Aryan women who reproduce via parthenogenesis (asexual reproduction). The result is an ideal social order, free of war, conflict and domination. It first appeared as a serial in Perkin’s monthly magazine Forerunner.

What Diantha Did by Charlotte Perkins Gilman What Diantha Did

Charlotte Perkins Gilman opens a window of history through which we see a small part of the determined efforts made by women to elevate the circumstances of women in the early 20th century.Diantha Bell is a normal young woman desiring marriage and a home, but also she desires a challenging career in new territory that raises many eyebrows and sets malicious tongues wagging. Her effort to elevate housework and cooking to a regulated and even a scientific business, for the relief of homemakers, is a depiction of the late 19th century movement to promote Domestic Science, or Home Economics, as a means of providing more healthful home life, as well as career paths for women...

By: Hans Christian Andersen (1805-1875)

Book cover Little Mermaid

The Little Mermaid" (Danish: Den lille havfrue, literally: "the little sea lady") is a very well known fairy tale by the Danish author Hans Christian Andersen about a young mermaid willing to give up her life in the sea and her identity as a mermaid to gain a human soul and the love of a human prince. The tale was first published in 1837 and has been adapted to various media including musical theatre and animated film. But this tale is not the Disney version, all cleaned up and made pretty. This is the way Andersen wrote it...

Book cover Ice-Maiden: and Other Tales

Short-stories/fairy tales by H. C. Anderson, includes The Ice-maiden -- The Butterfly -- The Psyche -- The Snail and the Rose-treeThe Ice-Maiden: Written toward the end of Hans Christian Andersen's career, "The Ice-Maiden" is the story of Rudy, a boy who's mother died in the ice of the mountains while he survives, saved by the kiss of the Ice-Maiden. The Ice-Maiden, jealous that the boy she claimed has escaped her embrace, pursues him through the rest of his life.The Butterfly: A butterfly searches for the perfect flower to be his bride...

By: William Le Queux (1864-1927)

The Czar's Spy by William Le Queux The Czar's Spy

William Le Queux was a British novelist and prolific writer of mysteries. Indeed, mystery surrounds the author himself as to whether he was a spy or rather just a self-promoter. Regardless of which is true, Le Queux brings us a story of intrigue and espionage that travels across Europe in the true spirit of a good mystery. There are shootings, burglaries, romances, escapes from prisons, and intricate conspiracies that may surprise and leave you scratching your head as you try to solve this “whodunit”. In the best tradition of a good mystery however, you may need to wait for the final chapters to discover the truth.

Hushed Up! A Mystery of London by William Le Queux Hushed Up! A Mystery of London

A young man, Owen Biddulph, is drawn to a beautiful young woman with a mysterious past... a past that seems to have returned to cause her disappearance! Is she his new found love or his nemesis? And who is this mysterious clergyman that warns him to avoid this young woman, at risk of his very life! What possible harm could this sweet young woman inflict? Written by one of the Masters of Mystery, William Le Queux. (Introduction by Tom Weiss)

The Seven Secrets by William Le Queux The Seven Secrets

A true “whodunit” with as many twists and turns as an English country road. Old man Courtenay is found murdered in his bed. Dr. Ralph Boyd is summoned to Courtenay Manor to examine the slain man and discovers a clue that might solve the case. But, he decides to keep the clue private for personal reasons. In the meantime, Scotland Yard has no clues as the culprits or the motive. Dr. Boyd, because of his new found clue, is sure he knows who is the murderer. Or, is it a murderess? His intimate acquaintance, Ambler Jevons, is also investigating the crime but Dr...

The Stretton Street Affair by William Le Queux The Stretton Street Affair

Hugh Gabriel has recently been repatriated from the war and has rejoined his old firm as an electrical engineer. On the way to visit his uncle one night, he is asked by a servant if he would be willing to meet with his wealthy master who is in some distress. Hugh becomes witness to, and directly involved with, a dastardly murder. Or has he? Who is this mysterious millionaire Oswald De Gex he has been asked to meet with? Is Doctor Moroni an honest physician or a diabolical monster? And what about...

The Great White Queen by William Le Queux The Great White Queen

How to describe this book? In a word – savage. For those regular Le Queux mystery listeners, this book is a step in a different direction by the author. The book starts out like most Le Queux. Our hero, Richard Scarsmere, befriends an individual (Omar) at an English boarding school who turns out to be an African prince from a kingdom called Mo. Omar receives a visit from one of his mother’s trusted advisers. His mother, the Great White Queen, seeks him to return home immediately. Omar convinces Scarsmere to return to Africa with him since there is little opportunity awaiting him in London. What follows is a tale of deceit, treachery, barbarity, and mystery.

The Four Faces by William Le Queux The Four Faces

Michael Berrington is a bachelor leading a quiet life in London. Overhearing a conversation at his club one day, he becomes interested in a discussion regarding a man named Gastrell. Gastrell is somewhat of a mystery to the club members in spite of his renting a house from one of them. Berrington’s interest in Gastrell intensifies as his fiancé, Dulcie Challoner, befriends a wealthy widow, Mrs. Connie Stapleton who evidently has some type of relationship with Gastrell. As the plot progresses,...

The Invasion by William Le Queux The Invasion

This novel, also known as The Invasion of 1910, is a 1906 novel written mainly by William Le Queux (with H. W. Wilson providing the naval chapters). It is one of the more famous examples of Invasion literature and is an example of pre-World War I Germanophobia, as it preached the need to prepare for war with Germany. The book takes the form of a military history and includes excerpts from the characters' journals and letters and descriptions of the fictional German campaign itself. The novel originally appeared in serial form in the Daily Mail newspaper from 19 March 1906, and was a huge success...

The Sign of Silence by William Le Queux The Sign of Silence

Edward Royle is the head of a well-known chemical manufacturer in England, which he has inherited. He is engaged to the daughter of his father’s former partner, Phrida Shand, who lives with her mother. One night he is asked by his friend, Sir Digby Kemsley – a very famous railroad engineer, to come to his flat to discuss something although Kemsley is quite mysterious on the telephone. Royle visits, then returns home only to be summoned again by Kemsley, this time imploring him to return at once...

By: Peter Newell (1862-1924)

The Slant Book by Peter Newell The Slant Book

The Slant Book is literally the shape of a parallelogram, with the spine of the book running down one side. When opened, facing pages form a “V” shape. All the pictures on the slanted recto pages show a way-too-precocious infant in a carriage [the "go-cart" of yesteryear] racing downhill who has somehow gotten away from his nanny, gleefully creating havoc all along the way! The facing verso pages contain two stanzas of commentary on the charming –if alarming!– illustrations. This book pioneered the “special format” children’s literature of today, such as pop-up books or cutout books like Eric Carle’s The Very Hungry Caterpillar...

The Rocket Book by Peter Newell The Rocket Book

The Rocket Book begins when the son of a building superintendent sets a match to a rocket he discovered in the basement. Suddenly, the rocket blasts its way up through apartment after apartment in a high-rise, disrupting and transforming the humdrum goings-on of twenty families till it is finally stopped cold by something in the attic. An elliptical hole is punched in each of the book’s pages and illustrations to signify where the rocket passed through every apartment! As in all of Newell’s books, the verse on the verso-page provides commentary on the recto-page illustration...

By: Harrison Ainsworth

The Lancashire Witches by Harrison Ainsworth The Lancashire Witches

The Lancashire Witches is a highly fictionalised account of the activities of the notorious witches Demdike, Chattox and Alice Nutter who, together with others terrorised the district of Lancashire around Pendle Hill and the Forest of Bowland during the early seventeenth century. The witches named in the book were real enough, if not as witches then as people. Ainsworth, in his story brings in the dissolution of Whalley Abbey and the historic families of Assheton, Braddyll and Nowell and takes us through to the final trial and execution at Lancaster Castle in 1612. (Summary by Andy Minter)

By: Katherine Pyle (1863-1938)

The Counterpane Fairy by Katherine Pyle The Counterpane Fairy

A little boy, recuperating from a lengthy illness, is entertained by visits from the Counterpane Fairy, who treats him to stories associated with each of the squares in the counterpane (quilt) on his sickbed. She has him concentrate on one of the squares until it turns into something like a doorway into the story. Once inside the story, he becomes its lead character until it fades out as if he’s awakening from a dream.

By: Frank Froest (1858-1930)

The Grell Mystery by Frank Froest The Grell Mystery

Mr Robert Grell, millionaire and socialite, is found murdered in his study on a stormy evening. It’s up to Heldon Foyle, the detective, to unravel the mystery.

By: Marcus Tullius Cicero

The Philippics by Marcus Tullius Cicero The Philippics

A philippic is a fiery, damning speech delivered to condemn a particular political actor. The term originates with Demosthenes, who delivered an attack on Philip II of Macedon in the 4th century BCE.Cicero consciously modeled his own attacks on Mark Antony, in 44 BC and 43 BC, on Demosthenes’s speeches, and if the correspondence between M. Brutus and Cicero are genuine [ad Brut. ii 3.4, ii 4.2], at least the fifth and seventh speeches were referred to as the Philippics in Cicero’s time. They were also called the Antonian Orations by Aulus Gellius...

By: Giles Lytton Strachey (1880-1932)

Book cover Eminent Victorians

On Modern Library's list of 100 Best Non-Fiction books, "Eminent Victorians" marked an epoch in the art of biography; it also helped to crack the old myths of high Victorianism and to usher in a new spirit by which chauvinism, hypocrisy and the stiff upper lip were debunked. In it, Strachey cleverly exposes the self-seeking ambitions of Cardinal Manning and the manipulative, neurotic Florence Nightingale; and in his essays on Dr Arnold and General Gordon, his quarries are not only his subjects but also the public-school system and the whole structure of nineteenth-century liberal values.

By: Irwin Leslie Gordon (1888-1954)

Who Was Who: 5000 BC – 1914 by Irwin Leslie Gordon Who Was Who: 5000 BC – 1914

A short, humorous biography of famous people from 5000 BC to 1914. — S. McGaughey From the Introduction, “The editor begs leave to inform the public that only persons who can produce proper evidence of their demise will be admitted to Who Was Who. Press Agent notices or complimentary comments are absolutely excluded, and those offering to pay for the insertion of names will be prosecuted. As persons become eligible they will be included without solicitation, while the pages will be expurgated of others should good luck warrant.”

By: Haggard, H. Rider (1856-1925)

Ayesha, the Return of She by Haggard, H. Rider Ayesha, the Return of She

Ayesha, the return of She, is set 16 years after the previous novel She. Horace Holly and Leo Vincey have spent the years travelling the world looking for Ayesha, along the way they experience many adventures, including avalanches, glaciers and even death-hounds before finally arriving in the court of Kaloon. At the court, they hear tell of a woman who Leo suspects to be Ayesha, however things are never simple and conflict soon follows them to Ayesha’s court. (Summarised from Wikipedia)

By: Samuel Johnson (1709-1784)

Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia by Samuel Johnson Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia

In this enchanting fable (subtitled The Choice of Life), Rasselas and his retinue burrow their way out of the totalitarian paradise of the Happy Valley in search of that triad of eighteenth-century aspiration – life, liberty and happiness.According to that quirky authority, James Boswell, Johnson penned his only work of prose fiction in a handful of days to cover the cost of his mother’s funeral. The stylistic elegance of the book and its wide-ranging philosophical concerns give no hint of haste or superficiality...

By: Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593)

The Jew of Malta by Christopher Marlowe The Jew of Malta

Christopher “Kit” Marlowe (baptised 26 February 1564 – 30 May 1593) was an English dramatist, poet, and translator of the Elizabethan era. The foremost Elizabethan tragedian before William Shakespeare, he is known for his magnificent blank verse, his overreaching protagonists, and his own untimely death. The Jew of Malta (1589) is an original story of religious conflict, intrigue, and revenge, set against a backdrop of the struggle for supremacy between Spain and the Ottoman Empire in the Mediterranean...

By: Tom Godwin (1915-1980)

Space Prison by Tom Godwin Space Prison

AFTER TWO CENTURIES….The sound came swiftly nearer, rising in pitch and swelling in volume. Then it broke through the clouds, tall and black and beautifully deadly — the Gern battle cruiser, come to seek them out and destroy them. Humbolt dropped inside the stockade, exulting. For two hundred years his people had been waiting for the chance to fight the mighty Gern Empire … with bows and arrows against blasters and bombs!

By: Samuel Richardson

Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded by Samuel Richardson Pamela, or Virtue Rewarded

Now first Published In order to cultivate the Principles of Virtue and Religion in the Minds of the YOUTH of BOTH SEXES.A Narrative which has its Foundation in TRUTH and NATURE; and at the same time that it agreeably entertains, by a Variety of curious and affecting Incidents, is intirely divested of all those Images, which, in too many Pieces calculated for Amusement only, tend to inflame the Minds they should instruct.(From the frontspiece of the first edition)Pamela tells the story of a 14 year old lady’s maid named Pamela whose master, Mr...

Clarissa, or the History of a Young Lady by Samuel Richardson Clarissa, or the History of a Young Lady

Clarissa Harlowe, the tragic heroine of Clarissa, is a beautiful and virtuous young lady whose family has become very wealthy only in recent years and is now eager to become part of the aristocracy by acquiring estates and titles through advantageous pairings. Clarissa’s relatives attempt to force her to marry a rich but heartless man (Roger Solmes) against her will and, more importantly, against her own sense of virtue. Desperate to remain free, she is tricked by a young gentleman of her acquaintance, Lovelace, into escaping with him. However, she refuses to marry him, longing — unusual for a girl in her time — to live by herself in peace.

By: Ruth Stiles Gannett (1923-)

My Father's Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett My Father's Dragon

A story about a boy who befriends a cat and then sets off on an adventure to rescue a dragon. Illustrations from the original book can be seen at the e-text link.

By: John Charles Dent (1841-1888)

The Gerrard Street Mystery and Other Weird Tales by John Charles Dent The Gerrard Street Mystery and Other Weird Tales

John Charles Dent, the author of the following remarkable stories, was born in Kendal, Westmorland, England, in 1841. His parents emigrated to Canada shortly after that event, bringing with them, of course, the youth who was afterwards to become the Canadian author and historian. Mr. Dent received his primary education in Canadian schools, and afterwards studied law, becoming in due course a member of the Upper Canada Bar. He only practised for a few years, then returned to England to pursue a literary career, writing mostly for periodicals...

By: Giambattista Basile (1566 or 1575-1632)

Stories from Pentamerone by Giambattista Basile Stories from Pentamerone

This is one of the oldest written collections of fairy tales. Although the names are different, listeners should recognise many of the stories as the basis of modern fairy tales. Be warned however, that these stories are a lot more violent and gruesome then the Disney versions you may be familiar with. Parents should listen to the files to gauge their suitability before allowing children to listen to them.

By: Augusta Groner (1850-1929)

The Case of the Pocket Diary Found in the Snow by Augusta Groner The Case of the Pocket Diary Found in the Snow

The account of some adventures in the professional experience of a member of the Imperial Austrian Police. (from the text)

By: Harold MacGrath (1871-1932)

The Drums of Jeopardy by Harold MacGrath The Drums of Jeopardy

The Drums of Jeopardy is a 1920 American novel by Harold MacGrath. The story was serialized by the The Saturday Evening Post beginning in January of 1920.In 1922 the book was made into a Broadway play and the following year a motion picture. A second film version appeared in 1931.It is said that a young Boris Karloff, who previously had a few uncredited film roles, chose his stage name for his first screen credit in 1920 from a Russian mad scientist character named “Boris Karlov” in this novel...

The Pagan Madonna by Harold MacGrath The Pagan Madonna

The Pagan Madonna, one of Harold MacGrath's numerous novels, set in Shanghai, tells a story of intrigue, murder, and illicit art “collecting.” The paths of Jean Norman, a Red Cross nurse from the United States, Ling Foo, a shifty pawn shop keeper, and Anthony Cleigh, millionaire art collector, cross and recross in growing intrigue over a string of beads. It is a world where “. . . every move you make is governed by Chance--the Blind Madonna of the Pagan . . . .” (Introduction by Don Jenkins)

By: Horace Walpole

The Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole The Castle of Otranto

The Castle of Otranto is a 1764 novel by HoraceWalpole. It is generally held to be the first gothic novel,initiating a literary genre which would become extremelypopular in the later 18th century and early 19thcentury. Thus, Castle, and Walpole by extension isarguably the forerunner to such authors as AnnRadcliffe, Bram Stoker, Daphne du Maurier, andStephen King.

By: Roy J. Snell (1878-1959)

The Blue Envelope by Roy J. Snell The Blue Envelope

A mystery and adventure story for girls set in Alaska.

By: Warner Van Lorne

Wanted – 7 Fearless Engineers! by Warner Van Lorne Wanted – 7 Fearless Engineers!

A great civilization’s fate lay in Dick Barrow’s hands as he led his courageous fellow engineers into a strange and unknown land. None of them knew what lay ahead–what dangers awaited them–or what rewards. But they did not hesitate because the first question asked them had been: “Are you a brave man?”

By: Marie Belloc Lowndes (1868-1947)

The Lodger by Marie Belloc Lowndes The Lodger

The Lodger by Marie Belloc Lowndes was inspired by the Jack the Ripper murders. An older couple, the Buntings, are forced to take in lodgers to make ends meet. They are on the verge of starvation when a mysterious man, Mr. Sleuth, appears at their door and asks for lodging, paying in advance. However, when the murders of young women in London attributed to a man known only as “The Avenger” continue, the Buntings, particularly Mrs. Bunting, grow fearful that their lodger may be the murderer.

By: Earl Derr Biggers (1884-1933)

The Agony Column by Earl Derr Biggers The Agony Column

English romantic adventure starring a young American in London and inspired by the personal ads (agony columns) in the London papers. In this treacherous tale of murder and intrigue young American Geoffrey West tracks a killer from the posh dining room of the Carlton Hotel to the opium dens of London’s Limehouse district in search of the truth and the heart of his true love only to find the culprit all too close to home. Earl Derr Biggers is better known as the author of numerous Charlie Chan novels. The Agony Column was released as a movie under the name Second Floor Mystery in 1930. While this movie was in production, its two stars, Loretta Young and Grant Withers, eloped.

By: H. Rider Haggard (1856-1925)

Book cover Lysbeth, a Tale of the Dutch

This is a great book if you're looking for an adventure filled novel. It takes place during the Spanish Inquisition and describes some of the horrors that happened giving you an idea of what it was really like to live during that time period. Follow Lysbeth, a young Hollander girl, as she struggles through life enduring times of hardship and peace, sorrow and happiness, war and love. (Introduction by Abigail Rasmussen)

Book cover The Brethren

Set in the days of the Crusaders, this books tells of a young maiden named Rosamund, and her twin cousins. Godwin is the grey eyed thoughtful man, and Wulf is the blue eyed warrior. They are both knights of England and they are both in love with their fair cousin. But the riddle of the story is which does Rosamund love?The adventure begins when Rosamund is taken from England and carried to the East. The plot thickens as the two young knights follow her in hopes of rescuing her from the Muslim leader, Saladin...

Book cover Marie: An Episode in the Life of the Late Allan Quatermain

This is a superb sweeping romantic adventure story of how Alan Quatermain, hero of fourteen of Rider H Haggard's books, met, fell in love with and married his first wife. It is related from the perspective of old age and is set against the time of the Great Trek in the 1830s. The villains of the piece are truly villainous, Dingaan a portly traitorous despotic Zulu chief, and a Portuguese killer who constantly plots to kill our hero and steal his wife.This book is written with histrionic flair typical of the Victorian era, gripping battles combined with scenes of fervent emotion...

Book cover Beatrice

Beatrice is a lonely twenty-two year old woman. After saving Geoffrey's life, they fall in love. However, Geoffrey is married. In addition, a local rich land owner wants to marry the beautiful Beatrice. This is a romance by the author of King Solomon's Mines, Allen Quatermain, and She."

By: Charles Mackay (1814-1889)

Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

The book chronicles and vilifies its targets in three parts: “National Delusions”, “Peculiar Follies”, and “Philosophical Delusions”.The subjects of Mackay’s debunking include alchemy, beards (influence of politics and religion on), witch-hunts, crusades and duels. Present day writers on economics, such as Andrew Tobias, laud the three chapters on economic bubbles.

By: Randall Garrett (1927-1987)

The Highest Treason by Randall Garrett The Highest Treason

Set in a future in which humanity’s dream of total equality is fully realized and poverty in terms of material wealth has been eliminated, humanity has straight-jacketed itself into the only social system which could make this possible. Class differentiation is entirely horizontal rather than vertical and no matter what one’s chosen field, all advancement is based solely on seniority rather than ability. What is an intelligent and ambitious man to do when enslaved by a culture that forbids him from utilizing his God-given talents? If he’s a military officer in time of war, he might just decide to switch sides...

Book cover That Sweet Little Old Lady

Randall Garrett had this story first published in Astounding Science Fiction September and October of 1959. His twisted sense of humor and gift for the bizarre situation with believable characters shines here. In the not too distant future, Ken Malone, young but promising FBI agent , is given the most important and difficult assignment of his career: find a spy who is stealing information from the Ultra Top Absolute Secret project to develop a non-rocket space ship at Yucca Flats Labs in Nevada. But this is not a normal spy, this spy laughs at the FBI and all attempts to find him or her because they use an unknown new method to steal the information directly from the minds of the scientists.

By: Herbert Jenkins (1876-1923)

Patricia Brent, spinster by Herbert Jenkins Patricia Brent, spinster

A romantic comedy, written in 1918, but with a modern feel to it. Patricia Brent one day overhears two fellow-boarders pitying her because she “never has a nice young man to take her out”. In a thoughtless moment of anger she announces that the following night she will be dining out with her fiance. When she arrives at the restaurant the next day, she finds some of the fellow-boarders there to watch her, so, rendered reckless by the thought of the humiliation of being found out, she goes up to a young man sitting alone at a table, and asks him to help her by “playing up”. Countless complications and adventures ensue…

By: Isabella L. Bird (1831-1904)

A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains by Isabella L. Bird A Lady's Life in the Rocky Mountains

Isabella Bird began travelling while in her early twenties to help alleviate illness that had plagued her since childhood. She was a single woman in her early forties when she made her treck through the Rocky Mountains. A Lady’s Life in the Rocky Mountains details this fascinating account of her travels through a series of letters written to her sister, Henrietta. These letters are filled with beautiful, vivid descriptions of the scenery, the people she encountered, the way of life, and a mountain man named Jim Nugent, that was as rough as they come, but a complete gentleman with Ms...

By: William W.Denslow (1856-1915)

Denslow's Three Bears by William W.Denslow Denslow's Three Bears

This version of the classic tale of the three bears has a heroine named Golden Hair. The jolly bears, instead of chasing her away from their home, come to live with her at Grandmother’s house. The recording can be enjoyed by itself, or you can read along.

By: Edith Howes (1872-1954)

Wonderwings and other Fairy Stories by Edith Howes Wonderwings and other Fairy Stories

A collection of three short stories about fairies, complete with good moral lessons (as every fairy tale should be).

By: Edward Ormondroyd

David and the Phoenix by Edward Ormondroyd David and the Phoenix

David knew that one should be prepared for anything when one climbs a mountain, but he never dreamed what he would find that June morning on the mountain ledge. There stood an enormous bird, with a head like an eagle, a neck like a swan, and a scarlet crest. The most astonishing thing was that the bird had an open book on the ground and was reading from it! This was David’s first sight of the fabulous Phoenix and the beginning of a pleasant and profitable partnership. The Phoenix found a great...

By: Oliver Optic (1822-1897)

The Birthday Party, A Story For Little Folks by Oliver Optic The Birthday Party, A Story For Little Folks

Flora Lee’s birthday came in July. Her mother wished very much to celebrate the occasion in a proper manner. Flora was a good girl, and her parents were always glad to do any thing they could to please her, and to increase her happiness.

Down South or Yacht Adventure in Florida by Oliver Optic Down South or Yacht Adventure in Florida

"Down South" is the fifth and last volume but one of the "Great Western Series." The action of the story is confined entirely to Florida; and this fact may seem to belie the title of the Series. But the young yachtsman still maintains his hold upon the scenes of his earlier life in Michigan, and his letters come regularly from that State. If he were old enough to vote, he could do so only in Michigan; and therefore he has not lost his right to claim a residence there during his temporary sojourn in the South...

Up the River by Oliver Optic Up the River

Up the River is the sixth and last of “The Great Western Series.” The events of the story occur on the coast of Florida, in the Gulf of Mexico, and on the Mississippi River. The volume and the series close with the return of the hero, by a route not often taken by tourists, to his home in Michigan. His voyaging on the ocean, the Great Lakes, and the Father of Waters, is finished for the present; but the writer believes that his principal character has grown wiser and better since he was first introduced to the reader...

By: J. M. Barrie (1860-1937)

Echoes of the War by J. M. Barrie Echoes of the War

Short stories with dramatic parts about civilian life in London during the First World War. Some humorous moments. By the author of "Peter Pan".

Book cover Little White Bird

"A children's book, sharp social commentary and sad psychological thriller about a man's search for a sense of belonging. All in one amazing and lyrical collection. This is the first book in which Peter Pan starts to appear. His adventure in Kensington Gardens are first narrated here. Other than that, it offers a magical portrait of contemporary London, and a realistic tale of a family to which every one of us could have belonged."


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