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By: Lawrence Turnbull (-1927)

Book cover A Golden Book of Venice

By: Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910)

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy War and Peace

Leo Tolstoy's War and Peace chronicles the lives of five Russian aristocratic families during Napoleon's invasion of Russia. Many considered this book to be the best Russian work of literature of all time and it is massive in scale. The book is divided in four volumes and the chapters don't just contain the narrative of the plot to the novel but philosophical discussions as well. This may be intimidating to average book readers but they shouldn't be discouraged to try reading War and Peace. After all, this book was written for all and not just for intellectuals...

Master and Man by Leo Tolstoy Master and Man

A land owner, Vasili Andreevich, takes along one of his peasants, Nikita, for a short journey to another town. He wishes to get to the town quickly ‘for business’. They find themselves in the middle of a blizzard, but the master in his avarice wishes to press on. They eventually get lost off the road and they try to camp. The master’s peasant soon finds himself about to die from hypothermia. The master leaves him on the horse to stubbornly try to find the road. When he returns, he attains a spiritual/moral revelation, and Tolstoy once again repeats one of his famous themes: that the only true happiness in life is found by living for others. (Wikipedia)

Book cover War and Peace Vol. 1 (Dole Translation)

”War and Peace” is a panoramic novel: It is its own justification, and perhaps needs no introduction. It always reminds the translator of a broad and mighty river flowing onward with all the majesty of Fate. On its surface, float swiftly by logs and stumps, cakes of ice, perhaps drowned cattle or men from regions far above. These floating straws, insignificant in themselves, tell the current. Once embark upon it, and it is impossible to escape the onward force that moves you so relentlessly. What landscapes you pass through, what populous towns, what gruesome defiles, what rapids, what cataracts! The water may be turbid, or it may flow translucent and pure, – but still it rushes on...

Book cover War and Peace Vol. 2 (Dole Translation)

I am inclined to rank Count Tolstoy not among the realists or naturalists, but rather as an impressionist. He is often careless about accuracy. Numberless incongruities can be pointed out. He is as willing to adopt an anachronism as a medieval painter. I would defy an historian to reconstruct the battle of Austerlitz from Count Tolstoy's description. And yet what a picture of a battle was ever more vivid! It is like a painting where the general impression is true, but a close analysis discovers...

By: Leonard Woolf (1880-1969)

Book cover Village in the Jungle

Woolf wrote this novel based on his experience as a government agent for British imperialist-controlled Ceylon in the early part of the twentieth-century. He focuses his story on one poor family in a jungle village as they struggle to survive, not just faced with a very harsh environment but with their own human prejudices, superstitions, jealousies, violence, ignorance, and greed. In the background is the other enemy: the foreign government that controls them but does not really understand or care for these uncivilized, not really human beings. It was an important work because its point of view was sympathetically a native one. JL

By: Louis Ulbach (1822-1889)

The Steel Hammer by Louis Ulbach The Steel Hammer

A large inheritance greatly transforms the lives of three people: a good man, who would have inherited at least a part of the fortune if his uncle hadn't passed away before he could alter the will, his cousin, who inherits all but is prevented from enjoying it, and a gambler, who is in desperate need of such a sum of money. The connection of the three ends fatal for at least one of them.

By: Louisa May Alcott

Shoes and Stockings: A Collection of Short Stories by Louisa May Alcott Shoes and Stockings: A Collection of Short Stories

Here are tales of love and war, modesty and frivolity, laughter and tears. Louisa May Alcott wrote many, many short stories. This collection shares but 7 of them.

By: Lucy Foster Madison (1865-1932)

Book cover In Doublet and Hose A Story for Girls

By: Lucy Maud Montgomery (1874-1942)

Rainbow Valley by Lucy Maud Montgomery Rainbow Valley

If you've read and loved Anne of Green Gables, you'd definitely like to add Rainbow Valley by Lucy Maud Montgomery to your collection. Published in 1919, it is the seventh book in the series and follows the further life and adventures of Anne Shirley. At Ingleside, Anne is now happily married to her childhood friend the devoted Gilbert Blythe and have now been together blissfully for fifteen years. They have six children. The book opens with the return of Anne and Gilbert (who is now a brilliant doctor) from a sojourn in London, where they had gone to attend a big medical congress...

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: Luise Mühlbach (1814-1873)

Book cover Marie Antoinette and Her Son

Marie Antoinette lives a happy life in a glittering court as Queen of France, but that soon changes as the revolution begins. Her son is Louis Charles, and his whole life changes with the death of his parents. But, that life is not what the people of France would expect.

By: Madame de La Fayette (1634-1693)

Book cover The Princess of Cleves

By: Marcus Clarke

For the Term of His Natural Life by Marcus Clarke For the Term of His Natural Life

For the Term of his Natural Life, written by Marcus Clarke, was published in the Australian Journal between 1870 and 1872 (as His Natural Life), appearing as a novel in 1874. It is the best known novelisation of life as a convict in early Australian history. Described as a “ripping yarn”, and at times relying on seemingly implausible coincidences, the story follows the fortunes of Rufus Dawes, a young man transported for a murder which he did not commit. The harsh and inhumane treatment meted out to the convicts, some of whom were transported for relatively minor crimes, is clearly conveyed...

By: Margaret Horton Potter (1881-1911)

Book cover Castle of Twilight

"Wistfully I deliver up to you my simple story, knowing that the first suggestion of “historical novel” will bring before you an image of dreary woodenness and unceasing carnage. Yet if you will have the graciousness but to unlock my castle door you will find within only two or three quiet folk who will distress you with no battles nor strange oaths. Even in the days of rival Princes and never-ending wars there dwelt still a few who took no part in the moil of life, but lived with gentle pleasures and unvoiced sorrows, somewhat as you and I; wherefore, I pray you, cross the moat...

By: Margaret S. Comrie (1851-?)

Book cover Key to the Riddle

Young Azerole Montoux and her brother Leon find themselves separated from their family by the religious persecutions of 1686. Threatened by the authorities and forced to depend on strangers, they must decide whether they can trust God to make sense out of the riddle of their lives.

By: Margaret Wilson (1882-1973)

Book cover Able McLaughlins

The Able McLaughlins won the Pulitzer Prize for a novel in 1924 in Margaret Wilson's debut work. Aptly described as "Little House on the Prairie - but for adults" the novel follows a group of Scottish families who pioneer the Iowa prairie in the 1860’s. The main storyline concerns Wully, the eldest McLaughlin son, who returns home from the Civil War to find that his sweetheart, Chirstie, has experienced an unspeakable tragedy that will profoundly affect the couple's lives. Their story is one of shame and honor, secrets and guilt, fear and loathing, revenge and forgiveness...

By: Maria Edgeworth (1768-1849)

Book cover Castle Rackrent

By: Marjorie Bowen (1885-1952)

Book cover Prince and Heretic

This novel is centered on the Dutch House of Orange, and begins with its prince, William. It is set in the time of the Holy Inquisition, when tensions between the Catholic and Protestant churches dominated.

By: Mark Twain (1835-1910)

The Prince and the Pauper by Mark Twain The Prince and the Pauper

A poor young boy from the slums of London watches a royal procession pass, with the youthful Prince of Wales riding at its head. He ventures too close and is caught and beaten by the Prince's guards. However, the young royal stops them and invites the vagrant to the palace. Here the two boys sup alone and are stunned to discover that they bear a startling resemblance to each other. The Prince is Edward, long awaited heir of the monarch, Henry VIII, while the vagrant is Tom Canty, the son of a thief and a beggar...

Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc, Volumes 1 & 2 by Mark Twain Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc, Volumes 1 & 2

Mark Twain’s work on Joan of Arc is titled in full “Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc, by the Sieur Louis de Conte.” De Conte is identified as Joan’s page and secretary. For those who’ve always wanted to “get behind” the Joan of Arc story and to better understand just what happened, Twain’s narrative makes the story personal and very accessible. The work is fictionally presented as a translation from the manuscript by Jean Francois Alden, or, in the words of the published book, “Freely Translated out of the Ancient French into Modern English from the Original Unpublished Manuscript in the National Archives of France...

Goldsmith's Friend Abroad Again by Mark Twain Goldsmith's Friend Abroad Again

This satire on the U.S.A.'s myth of being the "Home of the Oppressed, where all men are free and equal", is unrelenting in its pursuit of justice through exposure. It draws a scathingly shameful portrait of how Chinese immigrants were treated in 19th century San Francisco. (Introduction by John Greenman)

The American Claimant by Mark Twain The American Claimant

The American Claimant is an 1892 novel by American humorist and writer Mark Twain. The story focuses on the class differences and expectations of monarchic, hierarchical Britain and the upstart, "all men are created equal" America. Twain wrote the novel with the help of phonographic dictation, the first author (according to Twain himself) to do so. This was also (according to Twain) an attempt to write a book without mention of the weather, the first of its kind in fictitious literature. Indeed, all the weather is contained in an appendix, at the back of the book, which the reader is encouraged to turn to from time to time.

Book cover How To Tell A Story, and Other Essays (Version 2)

The complete collection of works using this title. Other versions, including the Project Gutenberg version, have been radically shortened. Mark Twain published several collections of his short stories and essays. This collection, like the others, dramatically demonstrates the eclectic nature of his work and the depth of his humanistic thinking. Each essay stands alone. Listeners will find many instances where modern times come to mind.

Book cover Death Disk

Mark Twain's "Death Disk" was inspired by the historical account of the execution of Colonel John Poyer of Pembroke, Wales on April 21, 1649. A small child was given the responsibility of selecting which of three rebel leaders of a civil uprising would receive a death penalty. The unfortunate fate was given to Poyer who was shot in front of a large crowd at Covent Garden. In 1883 Twain read about the child's role in the execution in a copy of Carlyle's Letters and Speeches of Oliver Cromwell, . In his personal notebook, Twain's imagination led him to remark, "By dramatic accident, it could have been his own child" ...

By: Marshall Saunders (1861-1947)

Book cover 'Tilda Jane

When spunky 'Tilda Jane isn't allowed to keep her beloved dog with her at the orphanage, she decides to set out on her own in search of a home where the inseparable pair will be accepted. Throughout her weary travels she encounters many people, both rich and poor, kind and cantankerous -- but will she ever find family? Set in the Canadian wilderness and coast of Maine, 'Tilda Jane is a story of true grit, forgiveness, and unlikely friendship.

By: Martha Finley (1828-1909)

Book cover Elsie's Children

This book continues the delightful "Elsie Dinsmore" series. Elsie's children, introduced in the previous volume, live life, grow up, and encounter various problems of their own. Additional Proof Listeners: AlaynaMay & Rachel.

By: Mary (Mary C. Johnson) Dillon

Book cover The Rose of Old St. Louis

By: Mary Brunton (1778-1818)

Book cover Self-Control: A Novel

The author: "This little tale was begun at first merely for my own amusement. It is published that I may reconcile my conscience to the time which it has employed, by making it in some degree useful. Let not the term so implied provoke a smile! If my book is read, its uses to the author are obvious. Nor is a work of fiction necessarily unprofitable to the readers." Jane Austen comments about this novel in a letter to her sister: “I am looking over Self Control again, & my opinion is confirmed of its’ being an excellently-meant, elegantly-written Work…”  - Summary by Author and Jane Austen

By: Mary Cholmondeley (1859-1925)

Book cover Diana Tempest

Colonel Tempest , his wastrel son Archie and beautiful daughter Diana are dismayed when they are cut out of the will of old Mr Tempest, Colonel Tempest’s brother. All of the Tempest fortune and estates at Overleigh pass to son John. However, everyone except John knows that he is illegitimate. Colonel Tempest, enraged, agrees in a drunken stupor to a bounty of £10,000 on John’s head although he later comes to bitterly regret this. Meanwhile, Di, who is strong and independent, has vowed she will never marry...

Book cover Notwithstanding

The book starts with Annette Georges choosing between two fates: suicide and running away with a disreputable stranger. She is rescued by a kind woman who looks after her until she can go to live with her maiden aunts in a village in the English countryside. There she meets and makes friends with various people and, almost coincidentally, the facts of her past come back to play a crucial part in the story. - Summary by Simon Evers

By: Mary Elizabeth Braddon (1837-1915)

Lady Audley's Secret by Mary Elizabeth Braddon Lady Audley's Secret

Inspired by a true life story, Lady Audley's Secret is the story of a woman's overwhelming ambition and passion for social success. When the first book came out in 1862, Victorian readers were shocked and outraged by its portrayal of aspects like bigamy, insanity, yearning for social status and the will to commit murder to achieve one's goals. The novel belongs to a genre that became very popular during that era. Known as “sensation novels” they can probably be equated to today's pulp fiction...

The Doctor's Wife by Mary Elizabeth Braddon The Doctor's Wife

This is one of the Victorian “Sensationist” Mary Elizabeth Braddon's many novels (best known among them: “Lady Audley’s Secret”). It is extremely well written, fluid, humorous and, in places, self-mocking: one of the main characters is a Sensation Author. The motifs of the-woman-with-a-secret, adultery, and death are classic “sensationist” material. Yet this is also a self-consciously serious work of literature, taking on various social themes of the day. Specifically, Braddon presents...

Book cover Sons of Fire

"He was a stranger in Matcham, a 'foreigner' as the villagers called such alien visitors. He had never been in the village before, knew nothing of its inhabitants or its surroundings, its customs, ways, local prejudices, produce, trade, scandals, hates, loves, subserviencies, gods, or devils , and yet henceforward he was to be closely allied with Matcham, for a certain bachelor uncle had lately died and left him a small estate within a mile of the village."

By: Mary Esther Miller MacGregor (1876-1961)

Book cover Black-Bearded Barbarian

A fictionalized biography of George Mackay (1844-1901), an influential Presbyterian missionary in northern Taiwan.

By: Mary Hallock Foote (1847-1938)

Book cover In Exile and Other Stories

Six short stories by Mary Hallock Foote (1847–1938), an American author and illustrator. She is best known for her illustrated short stories and novels portraying life in the mining communities of the turn-of-the-century American West. She is famous for her stories of place, in which she portrayed the rough, picturesque life she experienced and observed in the old West, especially that in the early mining towns. She wrote several novels, and illustrated stories and novels by other authors for various publishers...

By: Mary Jane Holmes (1828-1907)

Tempest and Sunshine by Mary Jane Holmes Tempest and Sunshine

Tempest and Sunshine is the first book written by Mary Jane Holmes. Set in the pre-Civil War south, it follows the struggles and romances of two sisters, as different as night and day; blonde Fanny and dark haired Julia. (Introduction by jedopi)

Book cover Rose Mather: A Tale

Fiction merges with history in this novel taking place during the turbulent times of the civil war and the horrors it entailed. Holme's silly, coquettish yet kind-hearted Rose will pull you in from the start. The sweet and pious Annie, the noble Tom Carleton, the motherly widow Mrs. Simms, the young and courageous Isaac, the mischievous rebel working for the south, and the brash, uneducated Bill Baker are just a few of the unforgettable characters who grow with every chapter. This is a tale of hardships and bravery, of fears and hopes, of inconsolable grief and love which will enthrall you to the end. - Summary by Celine Major

By: Mary Johnston (1870-1936)

To Have And To Hold by Mary Johnston To Have And To Hold

When I first started reading this book, I thought it to be a historical romance novel. As I read further, I pondered whether it might be a sea-faring story. Reading still further, I determined it to be an adventure story. Alas, it is all three. To Have And To Hold, written by Mary Johnston was the bestselling novel of 1900. The story takes place in colonial Jamestown during the 1600’s. Captain Ralph Percy, an English soldier turned Virginian explorer buys a wife - little knowing that she is the escaping ward of King James I...

Book cover 1492

By: Mary Raymond Shipman Andrews (1860-1936)

Book cover Yellow Butterflies

The title of this historical fiction could as well have been "A Soldier’s Mother" or “An Unknown Soldier”. There are indeed butterflies, and there is a small boy who grows into a fine, strapping young man who goes to war. But this moving novella centers squarely on the young man's mother, her love for him and her abiding faith.

By: Mary Roberts Rinehart (1876-1958)

The Amazing Interlude by Mary Roberts Rinehart The Amazing Interlude

It is the early days of The Great War. As the curtain rises, Sara Lee is sitting by the fire in her aunt and uncle’s home, knitting a baby afghan. Her beau’s name is Harvey. He has his eye on a little house that is just perfect for two and he will soon propose to Sara Lee. But in this play, the mise en scène is about to change. A fairyland transformation will take place and Sara Lee will step into a new and different story, where she is the princess in a forest of adventure. There is a prince, too, whose name is Henri...

Book cover More Tish

Mary Roberts Rinehart wrote 6 books about the elderly Letitia (Tish) Carberry and the escapades she gets her elderly lady cronies into. The series led to a 1942 movie with Marjorie Main. This particular book, the third in the series, was written after Mary's stint as a war correspondent in Belgium during the first World War.

By: Maurice Henry Hewlett (1861-1923)

Book cover The Fool Errant Being the Memoirs of Francis-Anthony Strelley, Esq., Citizen of Lucca

By: Melville Davisson Post (1869-1930)

Book cover Selected Uncle Abner Mysteries

Fourteen mysteries from the pages of the Saturday Evening Post, the Metropolitan, Red Book, and Pictorial Review magazines featuring Uncle Abner, who solves crimes in the pre-Civil War West Virginia hill country. His weapons are keen observation, logic, and a fundamentalist’s belief in the victory of good over evil. Post’s historical mysteries have been favorably compared to those of his fellow American Edgar Alan Poe. - Summary by Winston Tharp

By: Mór Jókai (1825-1904)

Eyes Like the Sea by Mór Jókai Eyes Like the Sea

He was a painter, a poet, a novelist. He lived during the Hungarian revolution and his love of freedom meant his life was often in peril. She was his first love, this girl with the eyes like the sea. She was at heart noble, good and loving. What an excellent lady might have been made out of this woman, if she had only met with a husband who, in the most ordinary acceptance of the word, had been a good fellow, as is really the case with about nine men out of every ten. But she always managed to draw the unlucky tenth out of the urn of destiny...

Book cover Tales from Jókai

Móric Jókay de Ásva, known as Mór Jókai or Maurus Jokai, was a Hungarian dramatist and novelist. He was a very prolific writer from an early age and wrote hundreds of novels, novellas, and short stories in his lifetime. The nine stories in this selection tell about hard times in Eastern Europe, especially in Hungary (Jokai was involved in the Hungarian uprising of 1848), as well as of ancient superstitions and folk lore. In the novella "The City of the Beast", Jokai gives his version of the sinking of Atlantis.

By: Myrtle Reed

Old Rose and Silver by Myrtle Reed Old Rose and Silver

The novel follows the lives of Rose and her widowed Aunt, Madame Francesca Bernard, along with young visitor and cousin Isabel, whose lives are changed by the return of an old friend and neighbour Colonel Kent, and his grown son, Allison. Other characters that help shape their lives in significant ways are the Crosby twins, unconventional and uninhibited youths that set society at naught, and an unconventional doctor who specializes in the impossible. Through the limited "wide-scope" descriptions...

By: Nathan Gallizier (1866-1927)

Book cover Under the Witches' Moon

The scene is Rome, 935 A.D. Thirty-year-old Tristan, dressed as a pilgrim, overhears a conversation between Basil, the Grand Chamberlain, and Il Gobbo, his assistant. After the two have left, Tristan continues to observe the revelry on the Eve of St. John. Suddenly a chariot containing a beautiful woman stops before him. They exchange words. He kisses her hand. Then she moves on, leaving him to ponder her beauty as he returns to the inn where he is staying. That night he has an enchanting and haunting dream of him together with another woman...

By: Nathaniel Hawthorne (1804-1864)

The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne The Scarlet Letter

A beautiful woman who is punished for the mortal sin of loving a man other than her husband, a cowardly lover, a vengeful husband, a rebellious illegitimate child and the oppressive and patriarchal morality of 17th century Puritanism in Boston. Together these form an unforgettable and thought-provoking glimpse of how much social attitudes have changed over the centuries. Nathaniel Hawthorne was the creator of such beloved works as Twice-Told Tales, A Wonder Book for Boys and Girls, The House of the Seven Gables and spine-chilling tales like Roger Malvin's Burial...

The House of the Seven Gables by Nathaniel Hawthorne The House of the Seven Gables

“The wrongdoing of one generation lives into the successive ones and… becomes a pure and uncontrollable mischief.” Hawthorne’s moral for “The House of the Seven Gables,” taken from the Preface, accurately presages his story. The full weight of the gloomy mansion of the title seems to sit on the fortunes of the Pyncheon family. An ancestor took advantage of the Salem witch trials to wrest away the land whereon the house would be raised… but the land’s owner, about to be executed as a wizard, cursed the Pyncheon family until such time as they should make restitution...

Book cover The Snow Image and other stories
Book cover John Inglefield's Thanksgiving (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover The Wives of the Dead (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover Main Street (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover The Man of Adamant (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover Little Daffydowndilly (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover Old Ticonderoga, a Picture of the Past (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover Sylph Etherege (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")
Book cover Old News (From: "The Snow Image and Other Twice-Told Tales")

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