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By: Robert Louis Stevenson

The Wrong Box by Robert Louis Stevenson The Wrong Box

The Wrong Box is a comedy about the ending of a tontine (a tontine is an arrangement whereby a number of young people subscribe to a fund which is then closed and invested until all but one of the subscribers have died. That last subscriber then receives the whole of the proceeds). The story involves the last two such survivors and their relations, a train crash, missing uncles, surplus dead bodies and innocent bystanders. A farce really.

Olalla by Robert Louis Stevenson Olalla

“Olalla” was a “shilling shocker” written for the Christmas season in 1885, just before the publication of Stevenson’s Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. The nameless protagonist of this Gothic tale, a wounded soldier, goes to the Spanish countryside to recuperate. He finds himself enthralled by the beautiful Olalla, the daughter of his hostess, whose family conceals a terrible secret.

Essays of Robert Louis Stevenson by Robert Louis Stevenson Essays of Robert Louis Stevenson

“Extreme busyness…is a symptom of deficient vitality; and a faculty for idleness implies a catholic appetite and a strong sense of personal identity.” What comforting words for the idle among us! Like many of the best essayists, Stevenson is very much the genial fireside companion: opinionated, but never malicious; a marvellous practitioner of the inclusive monologue. In this collection of nine pieces he discusses the art of appreciating unattractive scenery, traces the complex social life of dogs, and meditates in several essays upon the experience of reading literature and writing it...

Book cover New Arabian Nights

New Arabian Nights is a collection of short stories which include Robert Louis Stevenson's earliest fiction as well as those considered his best work in the genre. The first and longest story stars Prince Florizel of Bohemia who appears in the later collection of stories "More New Arabian Nights: The Dynamiter."

Book cover Island Nights' Entertainments

A marvelous depiction of two sides of South Sea Islands' life through three separate tales. One, the experience of the incoming British keen to live free and exploit the innocent; the other the supernatural as perceived by Stevenson working in the lives of the natives. One tale carries the germ of the story of Madame Butterfly, since become a part of Western culture. Another is an extraordinary retelling of a German horror story transposed to a South Sea Island setting. The last is an effort of the pure Stevensonian imagination and there can be nothing better.

Book cover Wrecker

The Wrecker (1892) is a novel written by Robert Louis Stevenson in collaboration with his stepson Lloyd Osbourne. The story is a 'sprawling, episodic adventure story, a comedy of brash manners and something of a detective mystery'. It revolves around the abandoned wreck of the Flying Scud at Midway Island. Clues in a stamp collection are used to track down the missing crew and solve the mystery. It is only in the last chapter that different story elements become linked.

Book cover Inland Voyage

As a young man, Stevenson wished to be financially independent and began his literary career by writing travelogues. This is his first published work, written at a time when travel for pleasure was still a rarity. He and a friend traveled by canoe through France and Belgium and he relates how they were thrown in jail, mistaken for traveling salesmen and became embroiled in gypsy life.

By: Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne (1850-1894)

Book cover The Ebb-Tide

Three men down on their luck in Tahiti agree to ship out on a vessel whose officers have died of smallpox. Their desperate venture inspires them to a further idea: they will steal the schooner and its cargo of champagne, sell them, and live a plentiful life. The thought is intoxicating... and so is the cargo, which they sample. Inattention nearly brings them to grief in a sudden storm. This sobering experience is followed by another - apparently the dead officers had a similar ambition! - and their dreams of riches vanish...

By: Robert Michael Ballantyne (1825-1894)

The Golden Dream by Robert Michael Ballantyne The Golden Dream

A young Englishman struck by Gold Fever! He is desperate to travel to California and become part of the great gold rush. He journeys to this remote and unfamiliar place and there he discovers the true value of gold, humanity and God. The Golden Dream by RM Ballantyne is one of more than one hundred books written for young adults by this Scottish author. Published in 1861, the book follows the glorious tradition of Victorian adventure sagas which emerged from the great discoveries that were made during this time, as England began colonizing distant lands...

The Coral Island - A Tale of the Pacific Ocean by Robert Michael Ballantyne The Coral Island - A Tale of the Pacific Ocean

Ralph Rover is a traveler at heart, and has always dreamed of shipping out to the South Seas islands. He finally convinces his aging parents to let him go and find his way in the world. But the islands that Ralph finds are not as idyllic as in his dreams. Shipwrecked on a large, uninhabited island, Ralph and his fellow survivors, Jim and Peterkin, discover a world of hostile natives and villainous pirates. Danger, high adventure, and wonders of the sea greet them at every turn. When all seems lost, they find help from an unexpected source.

Fighting the Whales by Robert Michael Ballantyne Fighting the Whales

A fatherless boy joins the crew of a whaling ship in order to earn a living for himself and his mother. Beyond being a fascinating depiction of a now-alien time, occupation, and culture, it’s also a rousing adventure story. One is left with the impression that hunting and catching a whale in a sailing ship was akin to you or me being stalked, ambushed, and killed by a shoebox full of mice.

Fast in the Ice by Robert Michael Ballantyne Fast in the Ice

At the age of 16 Ballantyne went to Canada and was six years in the service of the Hudson’s Bay Company. His rule in writing, being in every case, was to write as far as possible from personal knowledge of the scenes he described. In this book he details the lives of the crew as they must overwinter in the frozen north including their meetings with Eskimos and bears and their struggles with disease. This is a realistic account of what life was like for the explorers of the Arctic.

The Madman And The Pirate by Robert Michael Ballantyne The Madman And The Pirate

R. M. Ballantyne (April 24, 1825 – February 8, 1894) was a Scottish juvenile fiction writer. Born Robert Michael Ballantyne in Edinburgh, he was part of a famous family of printers and publishers. At the age of 16 he went to Canada and was six years in the service of the Hudson’s Bay Company. He returned to Scotland in 1847, and published his first book the following year, Hudson’s Bay: or, Life in the Wilds of North America. For some time he was employed by Messrs Constable, the publishers, but in 1856 he gave up business for the profession of literature, and began the series of adventure stories for the young with which his name is popularly associated.

The Dog Crusoe and His Master by Robert Michael Ballantyne The Dog Crusoe and His Master

This is a story of an adventure involving a young man, his dog, and two friends. Together they wander through the Western prairies on a mission to make peace between the “pale-faces” and the “Red men”. They face many perils and become heroes many times over. This wonderful story takes the characters (and the reader) on an action-packed journey through the Western prairies during the times when relations between the white man and the Natives were not always peaceful.

Black Ivory by Robert Michael Ballantyne Black Ivory

Although the book's title Black Ivory denotes dealing in the slave trade it is not our heroes who are doing it. At the very first chapter there is a shipwreck, which leaves the son of the charterer of the sinking ship, and a seaman friend of his, alone on the east coast of Africa, where Arab and Portuguese slave traders were still carrying out their evil trade, despite the great efforts of patrolling British warships to limit it and free the unfortunates whom they found being carried away in the Arab dhows...

My Doggie and I by Robert Michael Ballantyne My Doggie and I

This story surrounds a child waif, a young woman, a young gentleman doctor, and an elderly lady. This tale unfolds the story of a bond that brings these unlikely friends together and merges their separate paths of life into one common path. The bond is "Dumps", or "Pompey", the "doggie". With many twists, turns, and uncertainties, the ending may surprise the reader. All's well that ends well in this doggie "tail". (Introduction by Allyson Hester)

Book cover Gorilla Hunters

Ralph Rover is happily at home from his adventure on The Coral Island and wondering if he should settle down when he receives a visit from an eccentric stranger that won't give his name. This visit starts him on a string of adventures that find him getting charged by rhinoceroses, chased by African natives, and facing down a larger-than-life gorilla on his own. Of course, this is only the start of his adventure in to the land of the gorillas. Please note: this book has some words now considered derogatory, which are used in a generic way without any derogatory meaning...

Book cover Iron Horse

“Is that your bundle, sir?” repeated Mr Blunt a little louder. “Eh? yes, yes—all right,” replied Edwin, annoyed at the interruption, and thinking only of Emma Lee, to whom he turned, and went on—“Well, when Colonel Jones had scaled the first wall—” “Come, sir,” said Blunt, entering the carriage, and laying his hand on Edwin’s shoulder, “it’s not all right. This is another man’s property.” The youth turned round indignantly, and, with a flushed countenance, said, “What do you mean?” “I mean that you are travelling with another man’s property,” said Blunt, quietly pointing to the strapped rug...

Book cover Charlie to the Rescue

Charlie Brooke is always rescuing others, and sometimes even himself! His latest rescue, though, could turn out to be fatal...

Book cover Post Haste

In this book, Ballantyne weaves the story of Phillip Mayland and his friend, George Aspel with an interesting portrayal of the British Post Office as it existed in the 19th century. In the words of R. M. Ballantyne himself: "This tale is founded chiefly on facts furnished by the Postmaster-General’s Annual Reports, and gathered, during personal intercourse and investigation, at the General Post-Office of London and its Branches. It is intended to illustrate—not by any means to exhaust—the subject of postal work, communication, and incident throughout the Kingdom...

Book cover Island Queen

The story of Dominic, Otto and Pauline Rigonda, three siblings who are blown onto an island after being shipwrecked, and are later joined by the immigrant passengers and crew of a ship that is wrecked on the same island. When the question of government comes up, the little colony chooses a queen, and they work on improving the island for some time, despite internal dissensions, and an attack by savages. But eventually the colony encounters natural forces it cannot resist, and the queen and her family return to England, hopefully to live "happily ever after".

Book cover Jarwin and Cuffy

Jarwin is an English sailor who has been shipwrecked. He is stranded on a raft with only his dog Cuffy, and land is nowhere in sight. Their food and water is running out. What can Jarwin do to save his dog's (and his own) life?

Book cover Fighting the Flames
Book cover Twice Bought

This story is set in the gold fields of Oregon, where Tom Brixton, and his best friend, Fred Westly, are digging gold to try to “make their pile”. Before leaving England, the steady and God-fearing Fred had promised Tom's mother that he would do his best to take care of his friend, but in spite of all his efforts, Tom had fallen in with bad companions and taken to gambling. He was convinced that he could make his fortune quicker by attempting to increase it at the dice or card table, and all his friend's attempts to make him see his errors were unavailing...

By: Robert Millikan (1868-1953)

On the Elementary Electrical Charge by Robert Millikan On the Elementary Electrical Charge

The experiments herewith reported were undertaken with the view of introducing certain improvements into the oil-drop method of determining e and N and thus obtaining a higher accuracy than had before been possible in the evaluation of these most fundamental constants. From the Physical Review, Vol. II, No. 2

By: Robert Pitcher Woodward (1866-)

Book cover On A Donkey's Hurricane Deck

" A Tempestous Voyage of Four Thousand and Ninety-Six Miles Across the American Continent on a Burro, in 340 Days and 2 Hours - starting without a dollar and earning my way." The journey could be accomplished in 5 days by train, but the author took close to a year to work his way across the country. This is a witty and amusing account of one man (and his donkey)'s adventures crossing the American continent from New York to San Francisco.

By: Robert Sheckley (1928-2005)

Book cover The Status Civilization

Will Barrent awakes without memories just before being deposited on Omega, a planet for criminals where the average life expectancy is 3 years. He’s listed as a murderer and released into the illicit society as a “peon” the lowest class imaginable. A mysterious girl gives him a weapon that starts him on his path to status, a path that requires constant brutality. But it must be borne if our hero is to discover the reason for his imprisonment; A reason that pits him against himself, and involves the sardonically similar but devoutly different creeds of Omega and Earth...

Book cover Watchbird

3 Robert Sheckley short stories that demonstrate the breathof his fantastic imagination. In Watchbird, the question "can machines solve human problems?" is answered with a resounding YES! But there may be a few unforeseen glitches. Just a few. Warrior Race drops us into an alien race of warriors who fight in a way you will never be able to imagine until you listen. And Beside Still Waters is a gentle story that shows us a man who really wants to get away from it all ... sitting on a rock in the asteroid belt with only a robot for a friend. No girls allowed! A poignant and unsettling story to say the least.

Book cover Watchbird

3 Robert Sheckley short stories that demonstrate the breathof his fantastic imagination. In Watchbird, the question "can machines solve human problems?" is answered with a resounding YES! But there may be a few unforeseen glitches. Just a few. Warrior Race drops us into an alien race of warriors who fight in a way you will never be able to imagine until you listen. And Beside Still Waters is a gentle story that shows us a man who really wants to get away from it all ... sitting on a rock in the asteroid belt with only a robot for a friend. No girls allowed! A poignant and unsettling story to say the least.

By: Robert Silverberg (1935-)

Starman's Quest by Robert Silverberg Starman's Quest

Travelling at speeds close to that of light, spacemen lived at an accelerated pace. When one of the twin boys left the starship, he grew older while his twin in space barely aged. So the starship twin left the ship to find what happened to his brother who was aging away on earth.

By: Robert Silverberg and Randall Garrett (1935-)

Book cover The Judas Valley

Why did everybody step off the ship in this strange valley and promptly drop dead? How could a well-equipped corps of tough spacemen become a field of rotting skeletons in this quiet world of peace and contentment? It was a mystery Peter and Sherri had to solve. If they could live long enough! [from the Judas Valley]Originally published in Amazing Stories, October 1956

By: Robert Smythe Hichens

The Return of the Soul by Robert Smythe Hichens The Return of the Soul

Can the soul of the dead come back to haunt the one who was responsible for its death? What would happen if the responsible one did not believe it could be so, and yet was in love with the returned soul? The Return of the Soul is a horror story of a man who is visited by the returning soul of a deceased, and who has some very perplexing issues to deal with upon that return. (Introduction by Roger Melin)


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