By: Henry Fielding (1707-1754)
An Apology for the Life of Mrs. Shamela Andrews
An Apology for the Life of Mrs. Shamela Andrews, or simply Shamela, as it is more commonly known, is a satirical novel written by Henry Fielding and first published in April 1741 under the name of Mr. Conny Keyber. Fielding never owned to writing the work, but it is widely considered to be his. It is a direct attack on the then-popular novel Pamela (November 1740) by Fielding's contemporary and rival Samuel Richardson and is composed, like Pamela, in epistolary form. Shamela is written as a shocking revelation of the true events which took place in the life of Pamela Andrews, the main heroine of Pamela...
By: Henry James (1843-1916)
The Europeans: A sketch is a short novel by Henry James, published in 1878. It is essentially a comedy contrasting the behaviour and attitudes of two visitors from Europe with those of their relatives living in the ‘new’ world of New England. The novel first appeared as a serial in The Atlantic Monthly for July-October, 1878. James made numerous minor revisions for the first book publication.
By: Henry Murger (1832-1861)
Bohemians of the Latin Quarter
As much as any other work of literature, Henri Murger’s 1851 collection of witty sketches Scènes de la vie de bohème shaped the later romanticized image of the bohemian artist: independent, insouciant, exuberantly lustful, devoted to Art for Art’s sake no matter how cold and hungry the artist might be. Four young Parisian artists, Schaunard the composer, Marcel the painter, Rodolphe the poet, and Colline the philosopher, form an informal Bohemian alliance dedicated to Art and the joy of Life...
By: Henry W. Lucy (1845-1924)
Faces and Places
Faces and Places is a collection of articles on nineteenth century travel, events and personalities by the British journalist Henry Lucy, who wrote for the Daily News, a London newspaper. His open letter To Those About to Become Journalists rings as true today as when it was written.The first article, “Fred” Burnaby, includes a lively account of a balloon trip, while Night and Day on the Cars in Canada and Easter on Les Avants relate Lucy’s experiences of rail travel at that time. Other travel tales (A Night on a Mountain, Mosquitoes and Monaco, and Oysters and Arcachon) provide an insight into the Victorian Englishman’s attitude to Europe...
By: Henry Wallace Phillips (1869-1930)
This collection of eleven short stories is packed with Henry Wallace Phillips' offbeat humor. You will find a trolley car driver, bored with his route, who decides to drive around town instead. There are a couple of men unfamiliar with the basic properties of a canoe. And watch out for the curse of the chewing gum. Fun to read. Fun to record
By: Herbert George Jenkins (1876-1923)
Herbert Jenkins' most popular fictional creation was Mr. Joseph Bindle, who first appeared in a humorous novel in 1916 and in a number of sequels. In the preface to the books, T. P. O'Connor said that "Bindle is the greatest Cockney that has come into being through the medium of literature since Dickens wrote Pickwick Papers". The stories are based on the comedic drama of life at work, at home and all the adventures that take place along the way. It becomes clear as the stories progress that Bindle would not be who he is without Mrs. Bindle, and this book seeks to tell the stories of the Bindles from the distaff point of view.
Adventures of Bindle
Jenkins' most popular fictional creation was Mr. Joseph Bindle, who first appeared in a humorous novel in 1916 and in a number of sequels. In the preface to the books, T. P. O'Connor said that "Bindle is the greatest Cockney that has come into being through the medium of literature since Dickens wrote Pickwick Papers". The stories are based on the comedic drama of life at work, at home and all the adventures that take place along the way.
By: Herman Melville (1819-1891)
The Encantadas, Or Enchanted Isles
The Encantadas or Enchanted Isles is a novella by American author Herman Melville. First published in Putnam's Magazine in 1854, it consists of ten philosophical "Sketches" on the Encantadas, or Galápagos Islands. It was collected in The Piazza Tales in 1856. The Encantadas was to become the most critically successful of that collection. All of the stories are replete with symbolism reinforcing the cruelty of life on the Encantadas. (Introduction excerpted from Wikipedia)
By: Heywood Broun (1888-1939)
Seeing Things at Night
This Book is a collection of humorous short stories which describe the comedy in everyday things and situations.
Pieces of Hate and other Enthusiasms
This book is a collection of humorous short stories about ordinary instances in daily life. We learn many interesting things about life, such as how to court women successfully, what it feels like to be a god, and why sometimes it would be a good idea to exchange one's own newborn baby for a better one at the hospital.
By: Hugh McHugh (1867-1926)
Down The Line with John Henry
A humorous comedy of errors and light-hearted wit in the life of the likeable John Henry. When it comes to betting at the races, booze, his friends, and his woman Clara Jane, it's never a dull moment. The Hot-Air Association is in full session! Will Clara continue to go "down the line" with John Henry?
By: Hugh Walpole (1884-1941)
Jeremy And Hamlet: A Chronicle Of Certain Incidents In The Lives Of A Boy, A Dog, And A Country Town
Hamlet is Jeremy’s dog. This 1923 book is Hugh Walpole’s second volume in his Jeremy semi-autobiographical trilogy , Jeremy at Crale ), about a ten-year-old English boy. One commentator wrote this of the first book: “With affectionate humor, Mr. Walpole tells the story of Jeremy and his two sisters, Helen and Mary Cole, who grow up in Polchester, a quiet English Cathedral town…. Mr. Walpole has given his narrative a rare double appeal, for it not only recreates for the adult the illusion of his own happiest youth, but it unfolds for the child-reader a genuine and moving experience with real people and pleasant things...
By: Imogen Clark
Rhymed Receipts for Any Occasion
In addition to being amusing, recipes written in a poetic form were easy to remember and used as learning tools for the young housekeeper. Many of the poems in this 1912 publication were originally published in Woman's Home Companion, Good Housekeeping Magazine, the Housewife, Table Talk, and the Boston Cooking School Magazine.
By: Ingersoll Lockwood (1841-1918)
Baron Trump's Marvellous Underground Journey
The Little Baron Trump is a man of adventure. He and his dog Bulger have already braved many adventures together, but at the time our story opens, they are kind of dull at home, upset with the increasing familiarity of both two- and four legged neighbours. What to do? Luckily, an old manuscript of the learned Spaniard, Don Constantino Bartolomeo Strepholofidgeguaneriusfum, falls into his hands, and off he goes to a journey to the centre of the earth. This is a remarkable book from 1893, blending the tradition of the Münchhausen stories with more modern fantasy and science fiction. - Summary by Carolin
By: Irvin S. Cobb (1876-1944)
Irvin Shrewsbury Cobb was born on June 23, 1876. At seventeen years of age, he began writing for the Paducah Daily News, his hometown paper. At nineteen he became the managing editor; up to that point, our nation’s youngest. He worked as a columnist, a humorist and an author. But ‘horror,’ and ’short stories,’ are not why he is remembered. He is remembered because he was, and still is, funny. And although he is now dead–he died March 11, 1944–this work “Cobb’s Anatomy,” among others, has left an indelible mark upon mankind: a smile.
One Third Off
Irvin Shrewsbury Cobb (June 23, 1876–March 11, 1944) was an American author, humorist, and columnist who lived in New York and wrote over 60 books and 300 short stories. Cobb has been described as “having a round shape, bushy eyebrows, full lips, and a triple chin. He always had a cigar in his mouth.” This book is a hilarious account of Cobb’s attempts at weight-loss.
J. Poindexter, Colored
This comic novel relates the first-person adventures in New York City of Jefferson Poindexter, personal assistant to Cobb's famous Judge Priest, while the judge is vacationing abroad. (Introduction by Grant Hurlock)
By: Irving Bacheller (1859-1950)
Prodigal Village; A Christmas Tale
Small town life in early twentieth century New York state. This is a piquant parable of human nature. Bacheller's lightly humorous voice is evident throughout. Not all listeners will agree with the author's view of labor and management. - Summary by david wales
By: Irwin Leslie Gordon (1888-1954)
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: Irwin S. Cobb (1876-1944)
Irwin Cobb’s humorous Europe Revised is a travelogue and comedy almost in the style of Mark Twain. The dedication says it best, “To My Small DaughterWho bade me shed a tear at the tomb of Napoleon, which I was very glad to do, because when I got there my feet certainly were hurting me.”
By: Israel Zangwill (1864-1926)
The King of Schnorrers
Manasseh da Costa is a schnorrer (beggar) who lives on the charitable contributions of the Jews of late 18th-century London. But Manasseh is far from being a humble panhandler for, as every schnorrer knows, supporting the poor is a commandment from God (a mitzvah) not just a favour. And as the descendant of Portuguese Jews who had lived in England for many generations, Manasseh is the social superior of those newly arrived from Eastern Europe (called ‘Tedesco’), even his wealthy patron Joseph Grobstock...
Grotesques and Fantasies
A set of often funny, sometimes tragic stories by Israel Zangwill. Most famous for his scathingly accurate portrayals of the Jewish ghetto, these stories have a wider stage, poking fun at social conventions and society itself, both high and low. The real and the fantastic collide to produce a world uniquely Zangwill's.These are the tales of figures as diverse as a pantomime dragon, an excellent butler, a man living his life in the wrong order and a Jewish maiden who knows exactly what she is worth...
The Bachelors' Club is a sanctuary for an elite group of London's unmarried men to gather. To qualify as a Bachelor, each had to undergo a strict background check to ensure that they were not only unmarried, but a zealot in the movement that held marriage to be an undue punishment...upon women. As our story goes, we learn many revealing things about these men's convictions and pasts, as well as insightful commentaries on life and society in 1890 that is markedly similar to today. Summary by Keith Salis
By: J. Jefferson Farjeon (1883-1955)
No. 17 (Number 17)
A thriller about a down-and-out sailor finding his way in London. The book followed a successful play that was filmed by Alfred Hitchcock, and even made into a silent film. Its humour is irresistible. - Summary by Czandra
By: J. Thorne Smith, Jr. (1892-1934)
The hilarious diary of a young man's recruitment into, and service in a navy, which, though well equipped and disciplined, remains woefully ill prepared for his arrival and dubious contribution. (Introduction by Nigel Boydell)
By: James Stephens
There is a Tavern in the Town
The soul of Irish wit is captured in this unique tale of a barstool philosopher, the concluding story from 'Here Are Ladies' by James Stephens. (Introduction by iremonger)
A humorous tale about a poor Irish charwoman living in the slums of Dublin, and her innocent teenage daughter, Mary Makebelieve, whose first forays into courtship and romance, and their desire to escape from drudgery -- provide us with a charming picture of youth's enthusiasm and a mother's devotion, amidst Dublin's many parks and shops. The chapters are filled with James Stephens' witty Irish observations on life, love, ignorance, the frustrations of the poor and the wishful thinking that sustains them . . . . told as jauntily as only a few authors can equal.
By: James T. Fields (1817-1881)
The Owl Critic
James Thomas Fields was an American publisher, editor, and poet. At the age of 14, Fields took a job at the Old Corner Bookstore in Boston. His first published poetry was included in the Portsmouth Journal in 1837 but he drew more attention when, on September 13, 1838, he delivered his “Anniversary Poem” to the Boston Mercantile Library Association.
By: James Thomson (1834-1882)
Satires and Profanities
"Believing as I do that James Thomson is, since Shelley, the most brilliant genius who has wielded a pen in the service of Freethought, I take a natural pride and pleasure in rescuing the following articles from burial in the great mausoleum of the periodical press. There will doubtless be a diversity of opinion as to their value. One critic, for instance, has called “The Story of a Famous Old Jewish Firm” a witless squib; but, on the other hand, the late Professor Clifford considered it a piece of exquisite mordant satire worthy of Swift...
By: Jane Austen (1775-1817)
Love and Friendship
Begun when she was just eleven years old, Love and Friendship is one of Jane Austen's stories that very few readers may have encountered before. Austen experts feel that this story was written, like many others, only for the pleasure of her family and friends. It is scribbled across three notebooks, in childish handwriting, and the complete work is thought to have been written over a period of six or seven years. It is dedicated to one of her cousins, whom she was very close to, Eliza de Feuillide...
An epistolary novel, Lady Susan is an early work by Austen that was posthumously published in 1871. The short novel focuses on the self-serving eponymous anti-heroine, as she cunningly maneuvers her way through society in search of a wealthy husband for both her daughter and herself. Disregarding anything but her own selfish goals, Susan employs her charms to lure men and draw them into her web of deceit, no matter their age or status. Exploring issues including morals, manners, self-indulgence, malevolence, and social machinations, the relatively short novel is sure to fascinate with its atypical form...
By: Jean Webster (1876-1916)
When Patty Went to College
When Patty Went to College is Jean Webster's first novel, published in 1903. It is a humorous look at life in an all-girls college at the turn of the 20th century. Patty Wyatt, the protagonist of this story is a bright, fun loving, imperturbable girl who does not like to conform. The book describes her many escapades on campus during her senior year at college. Patty enjoys life on campus and uses her energies in playing pranks and for the entertainment of herself and her friends. An intelligent girl, she uses creative methods to study only as much as she feels necessary...