Vintage Classics

I Capture the Castle

I Capture the Castle

Dodie Smith, Valerie Grove

Cassandra Mortmain lives with her bohemian and impoverished family in a crumbling castle in the middle of nowhere. However, all their lives are turned upside down when the American heirs to the castle arrive and Cassandra finds...

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The French Lieutenant's Woman

The French Lieutenant’s Woman

John Fowles

Presents the love story of two people of insight and imagination seeking escape from the cant and tyranny of their age.

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Enduring Love

Enduring Love

Ian McEwan

One windy spring day in the Chilterns Joe Rose's calm, organised life is shattered by a ballooning accident. The afternoon, Rose reflects, could have ended in mere tragedy, but for his brief meeting with Jed Parry. Unknown to...

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The Complete Enderby

The Complete Enderby

Anthony Burgess

Enderby is a poet, social critic and Catholic. He may be found hiding in the lavatory where much of his best work is composed, or perhaps in Rome, brainwashed into respectability by a glamorous wife, aftershave and the dolce...

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The Art of Love

The Art of Love

Ovid, Tom Payne

Written in the days of gladiators and emperors, this book covers all you need to know about where to meet a new beau, how to handle illicit affairs and how to maintain your allure. It also contains the companion volume The Cure...

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Byrne

Byrne

Anthony Burgess

Michael Byrne is an Irish Don Juan - a composer, a charmer, a bigamist and a thug. He moves from country to country, from bed to bed, selling his talents and leaving a trail of children in his wake. His journey takes him from...

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Selected Poems of Pablo Neruda

Selected Poems of Pablo Neruda

Pablo Neruda

Contains resonant, exploratory, intensely individualistic verse, rooted in the physical landscape and people of Chile. In this book, we find sensuous songs of love, tender odes to the sea, melancholy lyrics of heartache, fiery...

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The Last Expedition

The Last Expedition

Captain Robert Falcon Scott, Sir Ranulph Fiennes

Captain Scott's expedition, carried in the Terra Nova, pitted him and his team not only against the elements but also against the Norwegian explorer, Amundsen. Ultimately, Scott was beaten by both. This title provides an account...

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Can You Forgive Her?

Can You Forgive Her?

Anthony Trollope

Alice Vavasor should be married to the sensible, kindly John Grey. But despite what her respectable relations might think, Alice cannot quite reconcile herself to this fate. Once upon a time she was engaged to her wild cousin...

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The Warden

The Warden

Anthony Trollope

Mr Harding is a good man, the warden to an alms house which provides a peaceful home to twelve old men. The young and zealous John Bold is also a good man, but he believes he sees in Harding's comfortable existence an injustice...

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The Way We Live Now

The Way We Live Now

Anthony Trollope

When the Melmottes arrive in London everyone agrees their manners are wanting, their taste is execrable and their lineage and background decidedly shadowy. But their money is far from revolting, and city society quickly makes...

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Cheri

Cheri

Colette

Lea de Lonval is a magnificent and aging courtesan facing the end of her career. She has devoted the last six years to the amorous education of the exquisitely handsome and spoilt Cheri - a playboy half her age. When an...

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The Tree of Man

The Tree of Man

Patrick White

At the turn of the century, Stan Parker takes a wife and makes a home as a small farmer in the wilderness of Australia. Amy bears his children and time brings him a procession of ordinary events - achievements, disappointments,...

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Gould's Book of Fish

Gould’s Book of Fish

Richard Flanagan

Once a upon a time that was called 1828, there was a man named William Buelow Gould, a white convict who fell in love with a black woman and discovered too late that love is not safe. From the author of The sound of One Hand...

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A Sort of Life

A Sort of Life

Graham Greene

Recalls the author's schooldays and Oxford, adolescent encounters with psychoanalysis and Russian roulette, his marriage and conversion to Catholicism, and how he rashly resigned from The Times when his first novel, The Man...

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A Maggot

A Maggot

John Fowles

A title that began as a vision the author had of five travellers riding with mysterious purpose through remote countryside. This image gives way to another - a hanging corpse with violets stuffed in its mouth - which leads us into...

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The Man within

The Man within

Graham Greene

Andrews is a young man who has betrayed his fellow smugglers and fears their vengeance. Fleeing from them, with no hope of pity or salvation, he takes refuge in the house of a young woman, also alone in the world. She persuades...

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God Bless You, Mr.Rosewater

God Bless You, Mr.Rosewater

Kurt Vonnegut

Eliot Rosewater is tortured by a fabulous inheritance he feels he does not deserve, so he devotes himself to drink, and to a life serving the dull, the ugly, the irrelevant and the useless.

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Catch-22

Catch-22

Joseph Heller

Set in the closing months of World War II in an American bomber squadron off the coast of Italy, this title tells the story of a bombardier named Yossarian who is frantic and furious because thousands of people he has never even...

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Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

Jane Austen

When Elizabeth Bennet meets Mr Darcy she is repelled by his overbearing pride, and prejudice towards her family. But the Bennet girls are in need of financial security in the shape of husbands, so when Darcy's friend, the affable...

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Three Elegies for Kosovo

Three Elegies for Kosovo

Ismail Kadare, Peter Constantine

Shows how legends of betrayal and defeat simmered in European civilisation for six hundred years, culminating in the agony of one tiny population at the end of the twentieth century.

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A Fairly Honourable Defeat

A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Iris Murdoch, Susan Hill

Hilda Foster is alone in an isolated cottage when she receives an important telephone call. She must get in touch with her husband but it is virtually impossible. How can she avert the crisis?

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The Book and the Brotherhood

The Book and the Brotherhood

Iris Murdoch

It's the midsummer ball at Oxford, and a group of men and women - friends since university days - have gathered under the stars. Included in this group is David Crimond, a genius and fervent Marxist.

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Cancer Ward

Cancer Ward

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

Solzhenitsyn's celebrated novel describes the lives of people in the Soviet Union under Stalin who were condemned on health grounds to internment or death. It also give a psychological insight into the intensified experience of...

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Spring Flowers, Spring Frost

Spring Flowers, Spring Frost

Ismail Kadare, David Bellos

As spring arrives in the Albanian mountain town of B, some strange things are emerging in the thaw. Bank robbers strike the National Bank. Old terrors are dredged up from the shipwreck of history. And ultra-explosive state secrets...

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The Atom Station

The Atom Station

Halldor Laxness

When the Americans make an offer to buy land in Iceland to build a NATO airbase after the Second World War, a storm of protest is provoked throughout the country. Narrated by a country girl from the north, this novel follows her...

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Stamboul Train

Stamboul Train

Graham Greene, Christopher Hitchens

A gripping spy thriller that unfolds aboard the majestic Orient Express as it crosses Europe from Ostend to Constantinople.

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 Read reviewKing Matt the First

King Matt the First

Janusz Korczak

A fable that follows the adventures of Matt who becomes king when just a child and decides to reform his country according to his own priorities. Ignoring his grown-up ministers, he builds the best zoo in the world and decrees...

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A Gun for Sale: An Entertainment

A Gun for Sale: An Entertainment

Graham Greene

Raven is an assassin, a hired killer, and his brutal murder of the Minister raises the spectre of war across Europe. As the nation prepares for battle, Raven goes on the run, hunted by the police and hunting the man who paid him...

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The Invisible Writing

The Invisible Writing

Arthur Koestler

Tells of Arthur Koestler's travels through Russia and remote parts of Soviet Central Asia and of his life as an exile. This book puts in perspective his experiences in Franco's prisons under sentence of death and in concentration...

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To Sir with Love

To Sir with Love

Edward R. Braithwaite

In 1945, Rick Braithwaite, a smart, highly educated ex-RAF pilot, looks for a job in British engineering. He is deeply shocked to realise that, as a black man from British Guiana, no one will employ him because of the colour of...

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To the Lighthouse

To the Lighthouse

Virginia Woolf, Helen Dunmore, Eavan Boland

From the seemingly trivial postponement of a visit to a nearby lighthouse, this title constructs an examination of the complex tensions and allegiances of family life, and the conflict between male and female principles.

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So Long, See You Tomorrow

So Long, See You Tomorrow

William Maxwell, Ann Patchett

In rural Illinois, two tenant farmers share much, finally too much, until jealously leads to murder and suicide. A tenuous friendship between lonely teenagers - the narrator, whose mother has died young, and Cletus Smith, the...

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 Read reviewRevolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road

Richard Yates, Lionel Shriver

Tells the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a bright, beautiful, and talented couple whose empty suburban life is held together by the dream that greatness is only just round the corner. This title shows how Frank and April...

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Absalom, Absalom!

Absalom, Absalom!

William Faulkner

Quentin Compson and Shreve, his Harvard room-mate, are obsessed by the tragic rise and fall of Thomas Sutpen. As a poor white boy, Sutpen was turned away from a plantation owner's mansion by a negro butler. From then on, he was...

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Mrs Dalloway's Party: A Short Story Sequence

Mrs Dalloway’s Party: A Short Story Sequence

Virginia Woolf

A collection of seven short stories, including The New Dress and Together and Apart . In The New Dress , a nervous young woman frets that her fellow guests are laughing at her yellow silk dress while Together and Apart ...

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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland

Lewis Carroll

Bored on a hot afternoon, Alice, a bright and inquisitive child, follows a white rabbit down a rabbit-hole, and finds herself in Wonderland, a very odd place indeed. This title mixes satire and puzzles, comedy and anxiety, Mock...

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Things: A Story of the Sixties with a Man Asleep

Things: A Story of the Sixties with a Man Asleep

Georges Perec

A story of a young couple who want to enjoy life, but the only way they know how to do so is through ownership of 'things'.

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W or The Memory of Childhood

W or The Memory of Childhood

Georges Perec

Tells two parallel tales, in two parts - one is a story created in childhood and about childhood; and the other story is about two people called Gaspard Winckler: one an eight-year-old deaf-mute lost in a shipwreck, the other a...

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The Seven Pillars of Wisdom

The Seven Pillars of Wisdom

T.E. Lawrence, Robert Fisk

With an account of the Arab Revolt against the Turks during the First World War alongside general Middle Eastern and military history, politics, adventure and drama, this title is also a memoir of the soldier known as 'Lawrence of...

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Flush: A Biography

Flush: A Biography

Virginia Woolf

First published in 1933, this work talks about Flush, Elizabeth Barrett Browning's cocker spaniel. It provides us with the adventures of Flush, along with glimpses of the life of his owner and her days at Wimpole Street as an...

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Night and Day

Night and Day

Virginia Woolf

Virginia Woolf portrays her elder sister Vanessa in the person of Katharine Hilbery - the gifted daughter of a distinguished literary family, trapped in an environment which will not allow her to express herself. This title deals...

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Between the Acts

Between the Acts

Virginia Woolf, Jackie Kay, Lisa Jardine

One of the author's works was published shortly after her death in 1941. The story takes place at Pointz Hall, the country home of the Oliver family for 120 years. Its central focus is the performance of a village pageant, written...

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Roger Fry

Roger Fry

Virginia Woolf, Frances Spalding

After his death, Woolf wrote a loving account of Roger Fry's passion for art and his challenging critical theories. Born in 1866, Fry was primarily responsible for introducing the post-Impressionists to Britain, and establishing...

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A Haunted House: The Complete Shorter Fiction

A Haunted House: The Complete Shorter Fiction

Virginia Woolf

Rich in fictional delights, this complete collection of Woolf's shorter fiction ranges from 1906 until the month before she committed suicide in 1941. It offers a valuable insight into the writer's development, demonstrating her...

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The Confidential Agent: An Entertainment

The Confidential Agent: An Entertainment

Graham Greene

Once a lecturer in medieval French, now a confidential agent, D is a scarred stranger in a seemingly casual England, sent on a mission to buy coal at any price. Initially, this seems to be a matter of straightforward negotiation,...

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The Comedians

The Comedians

Graham Greene, Paul Theroux

The centenary edition with a new introduction by Paul Theroux: three men meet on a ship bound for Haiti. Hiding behind their actors' masks, they hesitate on the edge of life -- afraid of love, afraid of pain, afraid of fear...

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 Special priceAntic Hay

Antic Hay

Aldous Huxley

When Theodore Gumbril hits upon the notion of designing a type of pneumatic trouser to ease the discomfort of a sedentary life, he decides the time has come to leave his position as housemaster in a boys' public school and seek...

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Grey Eminence

Grey Eminence

Aldous Huxley, David Bradshaw

Father Joseph was an aspirant to sainthood and a practising mystic, yet his ruthless exercise of power succeeded in prolonging the unspeakable horrors of the Thirty Years War. This title explores how an intensely religious man...

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Point Counter Point

Point Counter Point

Aldous Huxley

Marjorie has left her family to live with Walter; Walter is in love with the luscious but cold-hearted Lucy who devours every man in sight; the repulsive Spandrell deflowers young girls for the sake of entertainment and all the...

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Lady Chatterley's Lover

Lady Chatterley’s Lover

D. H. Lawrence

Clifford Chatterley returns from the First World War as an invalid. Constance nurses him and tries to be the dutiful wife. However, childless and listless she feels oppressed by their marriage and their isolated life. Partly...

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The Great Gatsby

The Great Gatsby

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Jay Gatsby is a self-made man, famed for his decadent champagne-drenched parties. Despite being surrounded by Long Island's bright and beautiful, he longs only for Daisy Buchanan.

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The Castle

The Castle

Franz Kafka

Kafka's novel is a study of relationships, particularly between the individual and society and between thought and action. K's isolation and perplexity and his begging for the approval of elusive and anonymous powers, epitomize...

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Requiem for a Wren

Requiem for a Wren

Nevil Shute

The mysterious death of a young woman on an Australian farm reveals a heartrending story of doomed wartime romance. Alan Duncan returns to his family home in Australia after the war and several years of study in England. But his...

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The Power and the Glory

The Power and the Glory

Graham Greene, John Updike

During a vicious persecution of the clergy in Mexico, a worldly priest, the 'whisky priest', is on the run. With the police closing in, his routes of escape are being shut off, his chances getting fewer. But compassion and...

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The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories

The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories

Angela Carter, Helen Simpson

From familiar fairy tales and legends - Red Riding Hood , Bluebeard , Puss in Boots , Beauty and the Beast , vampires and werewolves, the author has created a collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories.

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Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights

Emily Bronte

Cathy is a beautiful and wilful young woman torn between her soft-hearted husband and Heathcliff, the passionate and resentful man who has loved her since childhood. The power of their bond creates a maelstrom of cruelty and...

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In Search of Lost Time: Sodom and Gomorrah

In Search of Lost Time: Sodom and Gomorrah

Marcel Proust, Terence Kilmartin, D.J. Enright, C. K. Scott Moncrieff

Describes the class tensions of a changing France at the beginning of the twentieth century and exposes the decadence of aristocratic Parisian society and muses upon the subjects of homosexuality and sexual jealousy.

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Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Edward Albee

Middle-aged history professor George, and his wife Martha, are joined by another college couple. The result is an all-night drinking session that erupts into a nightmare of revelations.

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 Special priceWill You Please Be Quiet, Please

Will You Please Be Quiet, Please

Raymond Carver

Shows how humour and tragedy dwell in the hearts of ordinary people.

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The Mystery of Edwin Drood

The Mystery of Edwin Drood

Charles Dickens, Matthew Pearl

When young Edwin disappears after dinner on Christmas Eve and his watch and chain are later found in the nearby river, everyone suspects foul play. Could one of Edwin's acquaintances have murdered him - and, if so, what could...

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Some Prefer Nettles

Some Prefer Nettles

Jun'ichiro Tanizaki

The marriage of Kaname and Misako is disintegrating. Misako's father believes their relationship has been damaged by the influence of a new and alien culture, and attempts to heal the breach by educating his son-in-law in the...

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Mason and Dixon

Mason and Dixon

Thomas Pynchon

Charles Mason (1728 -1786) and Jeremiah Dixon (1733-1779) were the British Surveyors best remembered for running the boundary between Pennsylvania and Maryland that we know today as the Mason-Dixon Line. This title tells their...

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What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

What We Talk About When We Talk About Love

Raymond Carver

A collection of stories, set in the mid-West among the lonely men and women who drink, fish and play cards to ease the passing of time.

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The Makioka Sisters

The Makioka Sisters

Jun'ichiro Tanizaki, Edward G. Seidensticker

Tells the story of four sisters, and the declining fortunes of a traditional Japanese family. This title presents a loving and nostalgic recreation of the sumptuous, intricate upper-class life of Osaka immediately before World War...

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Moby-Dick

Moby-Dick

Herman Melville

When Ishmael sets sail on the whaling ship Pequod one cold Christmas Day, he has no idea of the horrors awaiting him out on the vast and merciless ocean. The ship's strange captain, Ahab, is in the grip of an obsession to hunt...

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The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle

Haruki Murakami, Jay Rubin

Toru Okada's cat has disappeared and this has unsettled his wife, who is herself growing more distant every day. Then there are the increasingly explicit telephone calls he has started receiving.

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The Poetry of Robert Frost

The Poetry of Robert Frost

Edward Connery Lathem, Robert Frost

With simple images that summon the rural landscape of New England, the author unfailingly moves the reader with his profound grasp of the human condition.

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The Master and Margarita

The Master and Margarita

Mikhail Bulgakov, Will Self

The devil makes a personal appearance in Moscow accompanied by various demons, including a naked girl and a huge black cat. When he leaves, the asylums are full and the forces of law and order in disarray. Only the Master, a man...

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 Special priceBreakfast of Champions

Breakfast of Champions

Kurt Vonnegut

Combines science fiction, memoir, parable, fairy tale and farce.

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The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray

Oscar Wilde, Irvine Welsh

Dorian is a good-natured young man until he falls in with the immoral Lord Henry and discovers the power of his own exceptional beauty. As he gradually sinks deep into a world of selfish luxury, he apparently remains physically...

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A Town Like Alice

A Town Like Alice

Nevil Shute, Eric Lomax

Jean Paget is just twenty years old and working in Malaya when the Japanese invasion begins. When she is captured she joins a group of other European women and children whom the Japanese force to march for miles through the jungle...

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 Read reviewCollected Stories

Collected Stories

John Cheever, Hanif Kureishi

A collection by Pulitzer prize-winning novelist John Cheever that shows the power and range of one of the finest short story writers. It includes masterpieces such as The Swimmer and Goodbye, My Brother and date from the time...

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The Second Sex

The Second Sex

Simone de Beauvoir

A work of anthropology and sociology, of biology and psychoanalysis, which stands - almost five decades after its first appearance - as the first landmark in the modern feminist upsurge that has transformed perceptions of the...

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Mrs. Dalloway

Mrs. Dalloway

Virginia Woolf, Carol Ann Duffy, Valentine Cunningham

Clarissa Dalloway is preoccupied with the last-minute details of party she is to give that evening. As she readies her house she is flooded with memories and re-examines the choices she has made over the course of her life. This...

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Slaughterhouse: The Children's Crusade - A Duty-dance with Death

Slaughterhouse: The Children’s Crusade - A Duty-dance with Death

Kurt Vonnegut

Centring on the infamous fire-bombing of Dresden in the Second World War, Billy Pilgrim's odyssey through time reflects the journey of our own fractured lives as we search for meaning in what we are afraid to know.

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 Read reviewThe Book of Flights

The Book of Flights

J. M. G. Le Clezio

Features a journey that begins in the dazzling streets of a nameless necropolis, and leads across fleeting landscapes - deserts, seas, mountains, islands, cities and great plains - to countless entertainments and adventures in...

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Travels with My Aunt

Travels with My Aunt

Graham Greene

Henry Pulling, a retired bank manager, meets his septuagenarian Aunt Augusta for the first time in over fifty years at his mother's funeral. Accompanying his aunt, Henry joins a shiftless, twilight society: mixing with hippies,...

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The Rings of Saturn

The Rings of Saturn

W. G. Sebald, Michael Hulse

A record of a journey on foot through coastal East Anglia.

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The Honorary Consul

The Honorary Consul

Graham Greene, Nicholas Shakespeare

Graham Greene's gripping tragicomedy of a bungled kidnapping in a provincial Argentinian town is considered one of his finest. It tells of Charley Fortnum, the 'Honorary Consul', a whisky-sodden figure of dubious authority taken...

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Doctor Zhivago

Doctor Zhivago

Boris Pasternak

Banned in the Soviet Union until 1988, Doctor Zhivago is the epic story of the life and loves of a poet-physician during the turmoil of the Russian Revolution. Taking his family from Moscow to shelter in the Ural Mountains, Yuri...

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Patrick White: A life

Patrick White: A life

David Marr

A biography of Patrick White, winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature, author of a dozen novels and many other books, a spokesman for (and against) an Australia he both hated and loved. The author secured White's co-operation in...

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 Read reviewRevolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road

Richard Yates

Tells the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a bright, beautiful, and talented couple whose empty suburban life is held together by the dream that greatness is only just round the corner. The author shows how Frank and April...

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Disgrace

Disgrace

J. M. Coetzee

After years teaching Romantic poetry at the Technical University of Cape Town, David Lurie, middle-aged and twice divorced, has an impulsive affair with a student. The affair sours; he is denounced and summoned before a committee...

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The Leopard

The Leopard

Giuseppe Tomasi di Lampedusa

As the head of the aristocratic family, Don Fabrizio is accustomed to knowing his own place in the world and expects his household to run accordingly. He is aware of the changes which are rapidly making men obsolete but he remains...

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The Handmaid's Tale

The Handmaid’s Tale

Margaret Atwood

Offred is a Handmaid in the Republic of Gilead. She has only one function: to breed. If she deviates, she will, like dissenters, be hanged at the wall or sent out to die slowly of radiation sickness. But even a repressive state...

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The Sea, the Sea

The Sea, the Sea

Iris Murdoch, John Burnside

When Charles Arrowby retires from his glittering career in the London theatre, he buys a remote house on the rocks by the sea. He hopes to escape from his tumultuous love affairs but unexpectedly bumps into his childhood...

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Pied Piper

Pied Piper

Nevil Shute

John Howard is determined to brighten up his old age by taking a fishing trip to France. However, during his stay the Nazis invade and he is forced to try to escape back to England with the two small children of some friends who...

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Selected Poems

Selected Poems

Anna Akhmatova, Carol Ann Duffy

Anna Akhmatova is one of the most accomplished and well loved poets Russia has ever produced. Her passionate writing has won her an ardent readership all over the world. This title illustrates her broad scope and brilliant...

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Northanger Abbey

Northanger Abbey

Jane Austen

Catherine Morland is a young girl with a very active imagination. Her naivety and love of sensational novels lead her to approach the fashionable social scene in Bath and her stay at nearby Northanger Abbey with preconceptions...

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A Country Doctor's Notebook

A Country Doctor’s Notebook

Mikhail Bulgakov

With the ink still wet on his diploma, the twenty-five-year-old Dr Mikhail Bulgakov was flung into the depths of rural Russia in 1916-17. This book show how his alter-ego copes (or fails to cope) with the new and often appalling...

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Flaubert's Parrot

Flaubert’s Parrot

Julian Barnes

Geoffrey Braithwaite is a retired doctor haunted by an obsession with the great French literary genius, Gustave Flaubert. As Geoffrey investigates the mystery of a stuffed parrot Flaubert borrowed from the Museum of Rouen to help...

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The Ascent of Rum Doodle

The Ascent of Rum Doodle

W. E. Bowman, Bill Bryson

Tells how led by the reliably under-insightful Binder, a team of seven British men including Dr Prone (constantly ill); Jungle the route finder (constantly lost), Constant the diplomat (constantly arguing) and 3,000 Yogistani...

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Jane Eyre

Jane Eyre

Charlotte Bronte

As an orphan, Jane's childhood is not an easy one but her independence and strength of character keep her going. However, her biggest challenge is yet to come. Taking a job as a governess, for a passionate man she grows more and...

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Black Snow: A Theatrical Novel

Black Snow: A Theatrical Novel

Mikhail Bulgakov, Terry Gilliam

A satire by the author of The Master and Margarita on his ten-year love-hate relationship with Stanislavsky, Method-acting and the Moscow Arts Theatre.

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Diaboliad

Diaboliad

Mikhail Bulgakov

Contains five satirical stories.

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The Heart of a Dog

The Heart of a Dog

Mikhail Bulgakov, Andrey Kurkov, Michael Glenny

A rich, successful Moscow professor befriends a stray dog and attempts a scientific first by transplanting into it the testicles and pituitary gland of a recently deceased man. A distinctly worryingly human animal is now on the...

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The White Guard

The White Guard

Mikhail Bulgakov

Drawing on the author's personal experiences of the horrors of civil war as a young doctor, this title takes place in Kiev, 1918, a time of turmoil and suffocating uncertainty as the Bolsheviks, Socialists and Germans fight for...

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The Secret Garden

The Secret Garden

Frances Hodgson Burnett

Mary Lennox is an orphan who is sent to live with her uncle at gloomy Misselthwaite Manor. Neglected and lonely, she begins to explore her new home and learns of a secret garden that her uncle has forbidden anyone to enter. A...

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Possession

Possession

A. S. Byatt

Tells the tale of a pair of young scholars investigating the lives of two Victorian poets. This book features a trail of letters, journals and poems they uncover a web of passion, deceit and tragedy, and their quest becomes a...

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Difficult Loves: Smog - A Plunge into Real Estate

Difficult Loves: Smog - A Plunge into Real Estate

Italo Calvino, William Weaver

A collection of stories that follows the adventures of a cast of characters. It includes Smog and A Plunge into Real Estate , as well as other eleven tales.

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If on a Winter's Night a Traveller

If on a Winter’s Night a Traveller

Italo Calvino

Leads you through many different books including a detective adventure, a romance, a satire, an erotic story, a diary, and a quest.

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Invisible Cities

Invisible Cities

Italo Calvino, William Weaver

Marco Polo conjures up cities of magical times for his host, the Chinese ruler Kublai Khan, but gradually it becomes clear that he is actually describing one city: Venice.

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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass

Lewis Carroll

A bright and inquisitive child, one boring summer afternoon she follows a white rabbit down a rabbit-hole. At the bottom she finds herself in a bizarre world full of strange creatures, and attends a very strange tea party and...

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 Special priceCathedral

Cathedral

Raymond Carver

Presents a story in which a blind man guides the hand of a sighted man as together they draw the cathedral the blind man can never see.

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Elephant

Elephant

Raymond Carver

Covers seven stories including Errand , in which the author imagines the death of Chekhov, a writer whom the author hugely admired and to whose work his own was often compared.

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Fires

Fires

Raymond Carver

Contains four essays, including a memoir of the author's father's working life in the saw-mills of the Pacific Northwest, a tribute to his mentor John Gardner, and an essay about the influences on his writing life; fifty poems;...

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In Patagonia

In Patagonia

Bruce Chatwin

Explains author's travels to a remote country in search of a strange beast and his encounters with the people.

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On the Black Hill

On the Black Hill

Bruce Chatwin

A tale of identical twin brothers who grow up on a farm in rural Wales and never leave home. They till the rough soil and sleep in the same bed, touched only occasionally by the advances of the twentieth century.

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The Songlines

The Songlines

Bruce Chatwin

The songlines are the invisible pathways that criss-cross Australia, ancient tracks connecting communities and following ancient boundaries. This is an account which recalls the authors' travels across the length and breadth of...

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Utz

Utz

Bruce Chatwin

Traces the fortunes of the enigmatic and unconventional hero, Kaspar Utz. Despite the restrictions of Cold War Czechoslovakia, Utz asserts his individuality through his devotion to his precious collection of Meissen porcelain.

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The Viceroy of Ouidah

The Viceroy of Ouidah

Bruce Chatwin

Francisco Manoel da Silva, a poor Brazilian sailed to the African kingdom of Dahomey in the early 1800s, determined to make his fortune in the slave trade. Armed with nothing but an iron will, he became a man of substance in...

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What am I Doing Here?

What am I Doing Here?

Bruce Chatwin

Presenting a collection of profiles, essays and travel stories, the author takes us to Benin, where he is arrested as a mercenary during a coup; to Boston to meet an LSD guru who believes he is Christ; to India with Indira Gandhi...

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The Letters of John Cheever

The Letters of John Cheever

John Cheever, Benjamin Cheever, Jay McInerney

Features John Cheever's letters that include correspondence with his contemporaries, such as Philip Roth, John Updike and Saul Bellow, his days as a young, aspiring writer and his battles with bisexuality and alcoholism.

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Bullet Park

Bullet Park

John Cheever

Eliot Nailles loves his wife and son to distraction; Paul Hammer is a bastard named after a common household tool. Neighbours in Bullet Park, the two become fatefully linked by the mysterious binding power of their names in...

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The Journals

The Journals

John Cheever

Presents John Cheever's journals that reveal the inner life of this remarkable writer and the contradictions that drove him.

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Oh, What a Paradise it Seems

Oh, What a Paradise it Seems

John Cheever

In an idyllic American village, elderly romantic Lemuel Sears still has it in him to fall wildly in love with strangers of both sexes. But Sears' paradise is under threat. Can Sears thwart the monstrous aspects of...

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The Wapshot Chronicle

The Wapshot Chronicle

John Cheever

Introduces the Wapshots of St Botolphs. This title features Captain Leander Wapshot, venerable sea-dog and would-be suicide; his licentious older son, Moses; and Moses' adoring and errant younger brother, Coverly.

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The Wapshot Scandal: With an Introduction by Dave Eggers

The Wapshot Scandal: With an Introduction by Dave Eggers

John Cheever, Dave Eggers

Once upon a time the Wapshots of St Botolphs were distinguished for their unshakeable good opinion of themselves. But the family members have drifted far from their New England village - and into the demented caprices of the...

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The Origin of Species: and, The Voyage of the Beagle

The Origin of Species: and, The Voyage of the Beagle

Charles Darwin, Ruth Padel

Presents the author's landmark theory of evolution of species by a process of natural selection, the Origin of Species which is the basis of modern biology and the concept of biodiversity.

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Moll Flanders

Moll Flanders

Daniel Defoe

A tale that presents life in the prisons, alleyways and underworlds of eighteenth-century London.

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Robinson Crusoe

Robinson Crusoe

Daniel Defoe

Robinson Crusoe runs away from home to join the navy. After a series of adventures at sea, he is shipwrecked in a devastating storm, and finds himself alone on a remote desert island. He remains there many years, building a life...

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Dombey and Son

Dombey and Son

Charles Dickens

Paul Dombey is an ambitious London merchant. He pins all his hopes for the future of his shipping firm on his fragile son whilst his daughter, Florence, goes unnoticed and neglected. It is only when the firm faces ruin, and Dombey...

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Little Dorrit

Little Dorrit

Charles Dickens

Amy Dorrit was born in the Marshalsea debtors' prison and has lived there with her family for all of her twenty-two years, only leaving during the day to work as a seamstress for the forbidding Mrs Clennam. The arrival of Mrs...

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Notes from the Underground

Notes from the Underground

F. M. Dostoevsky, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Presenting the apology and confession of a minor mid-19th-century Russian official, this title offers a half-desperate, half-mocking political critique and an account of man's breakaway from society and descent 'underground'.

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The Name of the Rose

The Name of the Rose

Umberto Eco

Franciscans in a wealthy Italian abbey are suspected of heresy, and Brother William of Baskerville arrives to investigate. But his delicate mission is overshadowed by seven bizarre deaths. He collects evidence, deciphers secret...

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Middlemarch

Middlemarch

George Eliot

Dorothea is beautiful and rebellious and has married the wrong man. Lydgate is an ambitious doctor and has married the wrong woman. They long to make a positive difference in the world. But they and other inhabitants of...

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Medea

Medea

Euripides, Robin Robertson

Medea's husband Jason has left her for a younger woman. He has forgotten all the promises he made and is even prepared to abandon their two sons. But Medea is not a woman to accept such disrespect passively. Strong-willed and...

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The Collector

The Collector

John Fowles

Withdrawn, uneducated and unloved, Frederick collects butterflies and takes photographs. He is obsessed with a beautiful stranger, the art student Miranda. When he wins the pools he buys a remote Sussex house and calmly abducts...

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The French Lieutenant's Woman

The French Lieutenant’s Woman

John Fowles

Charles Smithson, a respectable engaged man, meets Sarah Woodruff as she stands on the Cobb at Lyme Regis, staring out to sea. Charles falls in love, but Sarah is a disgraced woman, and their romance will defy all the stifling...

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Brighton Rock

Brighton Rock

Graham Greene, J. M. Coetzee

A gang war is raging through the dark underworld of Brighton. Seventeen-year-old Pinkie, malign and ruthless, has killed a man. Believing he can escape retribution, he is unprepared for the courageous, life-embracing Ida Arnold....

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Dr Fischer of Geneva

Dr Fischer of Geneva

Graham Greene

Doctor Fischer despises the human race. The notorious toothpaste millionaire decides to hold the last of his famous parties.

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Monsignor Quixote

Monsignor Quixote

Graham Greene

With Sancho Panza, a deposed Communist mayor, his faithful Rocinate, an antiquated motorcar, Monsignor Quixote roams through modern-day Spain in this picaresque fable.

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Journey without Maps

Journey without Maps

Graham Greene, Paul Theroux

In 1935, Graham Greene set off to discover Liberia, a remote and unfamiliar West African republic founded for released slaves. Crossing the red-clay terrain from Sierra Leone to the coast at Grand Bassa with a chain of porters, he...

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The Quiet American

The Quiet American

Graham Greene, Zadie Smith

Pyle is a young idealistic American sent to promote democracy through a mysterious 'Third Force'. As his naive optimism starts to cause bloodshed, his friend Fowler, a cynical foreign correspondent, finds it hard to stand aside...

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The Third Man and the Fallen Idol

The Third Man and the Fallen Idol

Graham Greene

Tells the chilling story of a small boy caught up in the games that adults play. Left in the care of the butler and his wife whilst his parents go on a fortnight's holiday, Philip realises too late the danger of lies and deceit....

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We of the Never-Never

We of the Never-Never

Mrs. Aeneas Gunn

In 1902, newly-married Jeannie Gunn left the security and comfort of her Melbourne home to travel to the depths of the Northern Territory, where her husband had been appointed manager of The Elsey , a large cattle station.

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Far from the Madding Crowd

Far from the Madding Crowd

Thomas Hardy

Bathsheba Everdene arrives in the small village of Weatherbury and captures the heart of three very different men; Gabriel Oak, a quiet shepherd, the proud, obdurate Farmer Boldwood and dashing, unscrupulous Sergeant Troy.

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Jude the Obscure

Jude the Obscure

Thomas Hardy

Jude Fawley is a young man who longs to better himself and go to Christminster University. However, poverty forces him into a job as a stonemason and an unhappy marriage. When his wife leaves him Jude moves to Christminster...

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The Mayor of Casterbridge

The Mayor of Casterbridge

Thomas Hardy

The Mayor of Casterbridge is a man haunted by his past. In his youth he betrayed his wife and baby daughter in a shocking incident that led him to swear never to touch alcohol again for twenty-one years. He has since risen from...

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Return of the Native

Return of the Native

Thomas Hardy

Proud, passionate Eustacia Vye marries Clym Yeobright in the hope that he will help her escape her cramped rural existence. But when their relationship falters Eustacia turns to her old lover Damon Wildeve, leading to a disastrous...

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Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Thomas Hardy

Tess is an innocent young girl until the day she goes to visit her rich 'relatives', the D'Urbervilles, in hope that they might help her alleviate her own family's poverty. Her encounter with her manipulative cousin, Alec, leads...

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Catch-22

Catch-22

Joseph Heller, Howard Jacobson

Presents the tale of the dangerously sane Captain Yossarian, who spends his time in Italy plotting to survive. This novel is a satirical indictment of military madness and stupidity, and the desire of the ordinary man to survive...

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A Farewell to Arms

A Farewell to Arms

Ernest Hemingway

In 1918 Ernset Hemingway went to the war to end all wars , in the ambulance service in Italy. He was wounded and twice decorated. Here he recreates the fear, comradeship, and the courage of his young American volunteer and the...

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For Whom the Bell Tolls

For Whom the Bell Tolls

Ernest Hemingway

High in the pine forests of the Spanish Sierra, a guerrilla band prepares to blow up a vital bridge. Robert Jordan, a young American volunteer, has been sent to handle the dynamiting. There, in the mountains, he finds the dangers...

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The Glass Bead Game

The Glass Bead Game

Hermann Hesse

In the remote Kingdom of Castalia, the scholars of the Twenty Third century play the Glass Bead Game. The elaborately coded game is a fusion of all human knowledge - of maths, music, philosophy, science, and art. Intrigued as a...

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The Woman in Black

The Woman in Black

Susan Hill

Arthur Kipps, a junior solicitor, is summoned to attend the funeral of Mrs Alice Drablow, the house's sole inhabitant, unaware of the tragic secrets which lie hidden behind the shuttered windows. It is not until he glimpses a...

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 Special priceThe Doors of Perception: And Heaven and Hell

The Doors of Perception: And Heaven and Hell

Aldous Huxley, J. G. Ballard

In 1953, in the presence of an investigator, Aldous Huxley took four-tenths of a gramme of mescalin, sat down and waited to see what would happen. When he opened his eyes everything was transformed. Huxley described his experience...

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A Single Man

A Single Man

Christopher Isherwood

A novel in which a middle aged professor living in California, is alienated from his students by differences in age and nationality, and from the rest of society by his homosexuality. It explores the depths of the human soul and...

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What Maisie Knew

What Maisie Knew

Henry James

Caught in the crossfire of her parents' acrimonious divorce, witness to their intrigues and affairs, neglected and exploited, Maisie is a child who knows too much about the world of adults. The authors portrays a picture of a...

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The Portrait of a Lady

The Portrait of a Lady

Henry James

Isabel Archer's main aim in life is to protect her independence. She is not interested in settling down and compromising her freedom for the sake of marriage. But, on a trip around Europe, she finds herself captivated by the...

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The Turn of the Screw and Other Stories: The Romance of Certain Old Clothes, the Friends of the Friends and the Jolly Corner

The Turn of the Screw and Other Stories: The Romance of Certain Old Clothes, the Friends of the Friends and the Jolly Corner

Henry James

A young governess is sent to a great country house to care for two orphaned children. To begin with Flora and Miles seem to be model pupils but gradually the governess starts to suspect that something is very wrong with them. As...

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Bright Star: The Complete Poems and Selected Letters

Bright Star: The Complete Poems and Selected Letters

John Keats, Jane Campion

A collection of John Keats' poems.

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Just So Stories

Just So Stories

Rudyard Kipling, Philip Pullman

Have you ever wondered how the leopard got his spots? Or how the camel got his hump? This book contains stories that explain these secrets and many more and introduce such characters as the Elephant's Child, the Cat that Walked by...

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Women in Love

Women in Love

D. H. Lawrence, Howard Jacobson

Ursula and Gudrun are very different sisters who become entangled with two friends, Rupert and Gerald, who live in their hometown. The bonds between the couples quickly become intense and passionate but whether this passion is...

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The Tenth Man

The Tenth Man

Graham Greene

In a prison in Occupied France one in every ten men is to be shot. The prisoners draw lots among themselves - and for rich lawyer Louis Chavel, it seems that his whole life has been leading up to an agonizing and crucial failure...

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The Communist Manifesto

The Communist Manifesto

Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, David Aaronovitch

Stating that the history of the societies is a history of class struggle, this title argues that communism is the only route to equality, and is a call to action aimed at the proletariat. It is intended for those seeking to...

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The Snow Leopard

The Snow Leopard

Peter Matthiessen

One September, the author set out with a field biologist to journey 250 miles through the Himalayas to the Crystal Mountain on the Tibetan plateau. They wanted to study the wild blue sheep, the bharal, but also hoped to see the...

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Collected Short Stories

Collected Short Stories

W. Somerset Maugham

A collection of stories including Rain and The Three Fat Women of Antibes .

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Collected Short Stories

Collected Short Stories

W. Somerset Maugham

The second of four volumes of short stories which reflect Somerset Maugham's wry perception of human foibles and gift for evoking drama from a sense of time and place. Set in Malaya, America and England, they include Flotsam and...

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Collected Short Stories

Collected Short Stories

W. Somerset Maugham

Contains the celebrated series about Ashenden, a secret service agent in World War I. Based on the author's own experiences with the British Intelligence service in Switzerland, this title dramatises both the romance and absurdity...

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Collected Short Stories

Collected Short Stories

W. Somerset Maugham

This final, classic collection of stories reveals Maugham's unique talent for exposing and exploring the bitter realities of human relationships. Included are: The Lotus Eater , The Outstation and The Back of Beyond .

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The Gentleman in the Parlour

The Gentleman in the Parlour

W. Somerset Maugham, Paul Theroux

Somerset Maugham's success as a writer enabled him to indulge his adventurous love of travel, and he recorded the sights and sounds of his wide-ranging journeys with an urbane, wry style all his own. This book presents an account...

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The Magician

The Magician

W. Somerset Maugham

Arthur and his beautiful, innocent fiancee Margaret look forward to an idyllic life together, until they encounter the mesmerising and repulsive Oliver Haddo.

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The Narrow Corner

The Narrow Corner

W. Somerset Maugham

On his way home from a remote Pacific island, Dr Saunders travels with two strangers: the treacherous Captain Nichols, and Fred, a handsome Australian with a shadowy past. Driven to shelter from a storm on the island of Banda, the...

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Dracula

Dracula

Bram Stoker

A young lawyer on an assignment finds himself imprisoned in a Transylvanian castle by his mysterious host. Back at home his fiancee and friends are menaced by a malevolent force which seems intent on imposing suffering and...

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Midnight's Children

Midnight’s Children

Salman Rushdie

Born at the stroke of midnight at the exact moment of India's independence, Saleem Sinai is a special child. However, this coincidence of birth has consequences he is not prepared for: telepathic powers connect him with 1,000...

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Young Hearts Crying

Young Hearts Crying

Richard Yates

Young, newly married and intensely ambitious, Michael Davenport is trying to make a living as a writer. His adoring wife, Lucy, has a private fortune that he won't touch in case it compromises his art. She in turn is never quite...

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The Tin Drum

The Tin Drum

Gunter Grass

On his third birthday Oskar decides to stop growing. Haunted by the deaths of his parents and wielding his tin drum Oskar recounts the events of his extraordinary life; from the long nightmare of the Nazi era to his anarchic...

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Disturbing the Peace

Disturbing the Peace

Richard Yates

John Wilder is a successful salesman with a place in the country, an adoring wife and a ten-year-old son. But something is wrong. His family no longer interests him, his infidelities are leading him nowhere and he has begun to...

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Liza of Lambeth

Liza of Lambeth

W. Somerset Maugham

Down among the drab slums of Lambeth, eighteen-year-old Liza is the darling of Vere Street. Vibrant and bewitching, she is adored by the steady, loyal Tom. But then Liza meets Jim Blakeston, charming and worldy, new to the area,...

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The Merry-go-round

The Merry-go-round

W. Somerset Maugham

Looking out upon the backstreets, the suburbs and the high society haunts of Edwardian London, the delightfully witty and independent spinster Miss Ley surveys a tangled web of lives; she sympathetically observes the struggle...

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Short Stories

Short Stories

W. Somerset Maugham

A collection of short stories such as Rain , The Letter , The Vessel of Wrath and The Alien Corn .

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Points of View

Points of View

W. Somerset Maugham

Features essays ranging from an appreciation of Goethe's novels, to an encounter with an Indian holy man, with a considered analysis of the form at which Maugham himself excelled - the short story. This title presents the views...

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Then and Now

Then and Now

W. Somerset Maugham

Introducing the world of Machiavelli, this title covers three important months in the career of that crafty politician, worldly seducer and high priest of schemers.

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Cider with Rosie

Cider with Rosie

Laurie Lee

Growing up amongst the fields and woods and characters of the place, this memoir is about the authors childhood in a remote Cotswold village, a village before electricity or cars, a timeless place on the verge of change. It also...

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The Bonfire of the Vanities

The Bonfire of the Vanities

Tom Wolfe

Sherman McCoy is a WASP, bond trader and self-appointed 'Master of the Universe'. He has a fashionable wife, a Park Avenue apartment and a Southern mistress. His spectacular fall begins the moment he is involved in an accident in...

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Captain Blood

Captain Blood

Rafael Sabatini, Kate Mosse

Wrongfully arrested following the Monmouth rebellion of 1685, Peter Blood, physician and former soldier, escapes the hangman's noose only to be exiled to the tropical colonies. Sold into slavery to a cruel plantation owner, his...

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The Red House Mystery

The Red House Mystery

A. A. Milne

Tells a detective story, where secret passages, uninvited guests, a sinister valet and a puzzling murder lay the foundations for a classic crime caper.

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Selected Stories

Selected Stories

Alice Munro

Includes a selection of stories that deal with the secrets that cackle beneath the facade of everyday lives, the pain and promises, loves and fears of apparently ordinary men and women whom the author renders extraordinary and...

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The Painted Veil

The Painted Veil

W. Somerset Maugham

Kitty Fane is the beautiful but shallow wife of Walter, a bacteriologist stationed in Hong Kong. Unsatisfied by her marriage, she starts an affair with charming, attractive and exciting Charles Townsend. But when Walter discovers...

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Scaramouche

Scaramouche

Rafael Sabatini, Bernard Cornwell

When Andre-Louis witnesses the murder of his best friend by an arrogant and privileged aristocrat, he swears to avenge his death. Forced to flee his hometown after stirring up revolutionary fervour in the citizens, he falls in...

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The Death of Ivan Ilyich and Other Stories

The Death of Ivan Ilyich and Other Stories

Leo Tolstoy

The Death of Ivan Ilyich is one of the masterpieces of Tolstoy's late fiction. This collection includes The Death of Ivan Ilyich and nine other stories such as Hadji Murat , The Devil , and War and Peace .

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Slow Learner: Early Stories

Slow Learner: Early Stories

Thomas Pynchon

A compilation of five short stories which include: The Small Rain , Lowlands , Entropy , Under the Rose , and The Secret Integration .

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Vineland

Vineland

Thomas Pynchon

Vineland, a zone of blessed anarchy in northern California, is the last refuge of hippiedom, a culture devastated by the sobriety epidemic, Reaganomics, and the Tube. Here, in an Orwellian 1984, Zoyd Wheeler and his daughter...

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Treasure Island

Treasure Island

Robert Louis Stevenson, Jake Arnott

When young Jim Hawkins discovers a treasure map in a pirate's chest in his parents' inn, he is drawn into a world of danger and adventure. He joins the crew setting sail to the Caribbean to seek out the booty and over the course...

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Orlando: A Biography

Orlando: A Biography

Virginia Woolf, Peter Ackroyd, Margaret Reynolds

Orlando is a passionate young nobleman whose days are spent in rowdy revelry, filled with the colourful delights of Queen Elizabeth's court. By the close, he will have transformed into a modern, thirty-six-year-old woman and three...

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The Waves

The Waves

Virginia Woolf, Jeanette Winterson, Gillian Beer

A title that begins with six children playing in a garden by the sea and follows their lives as they grow up and experience friendship, love and grief at the death of their beloved friend Percival.

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 Read reviewArmageddon in Retrospect

Armageddon in Retrospect

Kurt Vonnegut

Offers a collection of twelve writings - a fitting tribute to the author, and an essential contribution to the discussion of war, peace and humanity's tendency towards violence.

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War and Peace

War and Peace

Leo Tolstoy, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Tolstoy's epic depicts Russia's war with Napoleon and its effects on the lives of those caught up in the conflict. In this book, he creates some of the most vital and involving characters in literature as he follows the rise and...

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Life: A User's Manual

Life: A User’s Manual

Georges Perec

Serge Valene wants to create an elaborate painting of the building he has made his home for the last sixty years. As he plans his picture, he contemplates the lives of all the people he has ever known there.

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Restoration

Restoration

Rose Tremain

Robert Merivel is a dissolute young medical student when an accident of fate leads him to the attention of King Charles II. Finding favour with the King, Merivel embarks on the time of his life, enthusiastically enjoying the...

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Paradise Lost: And Paradise Regained

Paradise Lost: And Paradise Regained

John Milton

Satan is out for revenge. His rebellion has failed, he has been cast out from heaven and is doomed to spend eternity in hell. Somehow he must find a way to prove his power and wound his enemies. He fixes upon God's beloved new...

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Remembering Babylon

Remembering Babylon

David Malouf

In the 1840s, a ship's boy cast ashore in northern Australia is taken in by Aborigines. Sixteen years later he steps out of the bush and inadvertently confronts the new white settlers with their unspoken terrors. A picture of...

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Frankenstein

Frankenstein

Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley

Victor Frankenstein's story is one of ambition, murder and revenge. As a young scientist he pushed moral boundaries in order to cross the final scientific frontier and create life. But his creation is a monster stitched together...

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War

War

J. M. G. Le Clezio

War - in the mind of the fragile Bea B, in the infinite icy landscape she journeys through, in Vietnam, in 10,000 years of human history. The war of the title is not merely a war of arms but a generalised state of violence...

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Of Human Bondage

Of Human Bondage

W. Somerset Maugham

After a few months studying in Heidelberg, and a brief spell in Paris as would-be artist, Philip Carey settles in London to train as a doctor. And that is where he meets Mildred, the loud but irresistible waitress with whom he...

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Theatre

Theatre

W. Somerset Maugham

Julia Lambert is in her prime, the greatest actress in England. Off stage, however, she is bored with her handsome husband, coquettish and undisciplined. She is at first flattered and amused by the attentions of a shy and eager...

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Persuasion

Persuasion

Jane Austen

Eight years ago, Anne Elliot bowed to pressure from her family and made the decision not to marry the man she loved, Captain Wentworth. Now, circumstances have conspired to bring him back into her social circle and Anne finds her...

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Death in Venice and Other Stories

Death in Venice and Other Stories

Thomas Mann

Gustave von Aschenbach is a writer who travels to Venice for a holiday. One day he notices a beautiful young boy who is staying with his family in the same hotel. Soon his days begin to revolve around seeing this boy and he is too...

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The Collected Stories of Richard Yates

The Collected Stories of Richard Yates

Richard Yates

Whether addressing the smothered desire of suburban housewives, the white-collar despair of Manhattan office workers or the heartbreak of a single mother with artistic pretensions, Richard Yates examines the hopes and...

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Cold Spring Harbor

Cold Spring Harbor

Richard Yates

Evan Shepard is a young man with a chequered past when he first meets the Drakes, after his car breaks down outside their house. Behind him, he has a troubled adolescence, a failed marriage and a little daughter, but his meeting...

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Eleven Kinds of Loneliness

Eleven Kinds of Loneliness

Richard Yates

A collection of stories of the lives of Manhattan office workers, a cab driver seeking immortality, frustrated would-be novelists, suburban men and their yearning, neglected women in the 1950s, the era when the American dream was...

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The Easter Parade

The Easter Parade

Richard Yates

Even as little girls, Sarah and Emily are very different from each other. Emily looks up to her wiser and more stable older sister and is jealous of her relationship with their absent father, and later her seemingly golden...

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The Aunt's Story

The Aunt’s Story

Patrick White

After her mother's death, middle-aged Theodora Goodman contemplates the desert of her life. Freed of the trammels of convention, she leaves Australia for a European tour and becomes involved with the residents of a small French...

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The Gormenghast Trilogy

The Gormenghast Trilogy

Mervyn Peake

Gormenghast is the vast, crumbling castle to which Titus Groan, is lord and heir. Titus is expected to rule this gothic labyrinth of turrets and dungeons, and his subjects, according to age-old rituals, but things are changing in...

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The Razor's Edge

The Razor’s Edge

W. Somerset Maugham

Larry Darrell is a young American in search of the absolute. The progress of this spiritual odyssey involves him with - his fiancee Isabel, whose choice between love and wealth have lifelong repercussions, and Elliot Templeton,...

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The Crying of Lot 49

The Crying of Lot 49

Thomas Pynchon

Oedipa Maas discovers that she has been made executrix of a former lover's estate. The performance of her duties sets her on a strange trail of detection, in which bizarre characters crowd in to help or confuse her. But gradually,...

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Liars in Love

Liars in Love

Richard Yates

A collection of seven short stories themed around troubled relations.

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A Good School

A Good School

Richard Yates

William Grove is a nervous teenager trying to fit in at his new boarding school. Jack Draper is a teacher whose wife is cheating on him. Edith Stone is the daughter of the English master who falls in love with the most popular boy...

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The Sound and the Fury

The Sound and the Fury

William Faulkner

Depicting the gradual disintegration of the Compson family through four fractured narratives, this novel explores intense, passionate family relationships where there is no love, only self-centredness.

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Up at the Villa

Up at the Villa

W. Somerset Maugham

Mary Panton walls up her desires in a beautiful villa high up in the hills above Florence, as she calmly contemplates her disastrous marriage. But a single act of compassion begins a nightmare of violence that shatters her...

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In Search of Lost Time: Time Regained and a Guide to Proust

In Search of Lost Time: Time Regained and a Guide to Proust

Marcel Proust, Terence Kilmartin, D.J. Enright, C. K. Scott Moncrieff

Years after the First World War's end, the narrator returns to Paris. He reflects on time, reality, jealousy, artistic creation, and the raw material of literature - his past life.

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Sabbath's Theater

Sabbath’s Theater

Philip Roth

Once a scandalously inventive puppeteer, Micky Sabbath at sixty-four is still defiantly antagonistic and exceedingly libidinous. But after the death of his long-time mistress - an erotic free spirit whose adulterous daring exceeds...

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A Void

A Void

Georges Perec, Gilbert Adair

Anton Vowl is missing. Ransacking his Paris flat, a group of his faithful companions trawl through his diary for any hint as to his location and, insidiously, a ghost, from Vowl's past starts to cast its malignant shadow.

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BUtterfield 8

BUtterfield 8

John O'Hara

This particular morning, Gloria finds herself alone in a stranger's apartment with nothing but a torn evening dress and her stockings and panties. When she takes a fur coat from the wardrobe to wear home, she sets in train a...

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On a Chinese Screen

On a Chinese Screen

W. Somerset Maugham

Maugham spent the winter months of 1919 travelling 1500 miles up the Yangtze river. He noted down crafted sketches of those he met on scraps of paper. This collection features Western missionaries, army officers and company...

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Complete Prose Tales

Complete Prose Tales

Aleksandr Sergeevich Pushkin, Gillon R. Aitken

Beyond his perfect expression of Russian mood, Pushkin's universality of vision has made him a permanent place in the history of world literature. This translation contains his prose fiction, including some tales which remained...

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The L-Shaped Room

The L-Shaped Room

Lynne Reid Banks

Pregnant by accident, kicked out of home by her father, 27-year-old Jane Graham goes to ground in the sort of place she feels she deserves. She thinks she wants to hide from the world, but finds out that even at the bottom of the...

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The Years

The Years

Virginia Woolf, Susan Hill

Follows the lives of the Pargiters, a large middle-class London family, from an uncertain spring in 1880 to a party on a summer evening in the 1930s. We see them each endure and remember heart-break, loss, radical change and...

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A Room Of One's Own And Three Guineas

A Room Of One’s Own And Three Guineas

Virginia Woolf, Hermione Lee

With an introduction, notes and references, this title combines two books which were among the greatest contributions to feminist literature this century, which together form a brilliant attack on sexual inequality. It argues...

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Selected Letters

Selected Letters

Virginia Woolf, Joanne Trautmann Banks, Hermione Lee

Whether bemoaning some domestic travail, commenting publicly on the state of the nation, or discussing cultural, artistic or personal concerns, this volume displays the author's courage and brilliance, her generosity and love of...

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Selected Diaries

Selected Diaries

Virginia Woolf, Quentin Bell

Virginia Woolf turned to her diary as to an intimate friend, to whom she could freely and spontaneously confide her thoughts on public events or the joys and trials of domestic life. Between 1st January 1915 and her death in 1941...

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To the Lighthouse

To the Lighthouse

Virginia Woolf, Eavan Boland, Maud Ellmann

'To the Lighthouse' was Virginia Woolf's fifth novel, and was the first book to win her a large public. The story of an English middle class family in the years leading up to the First World War, it has remained the most popular...

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Native Son

Native Son

Richard Wright, Caryl Phillips

Follows Bigger Thomas, a young black man who is trapped in a life of poverty in the slums of Chicago. Unwittingly involved in a wealthy woman's death, he is hunted relentlessly, baited by prejudiced officials, charged with murder...

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Cakes and Ale

Cakes and Ale

W. Somerset Maugham, Nicholas Shakespeare

Traces the fortunes of Edward Driffield and his extraordinary wife Rosie, one of the most delightful heroines of twentieth-century literature.

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Ashenden

Ashenden

W. Somerset Maugham

When war broke out in 1914, Somerset Maugham was dispatched by the British Secret Service to Switzerland under the guise of completing a play. This title collects stories that are rooted in author's own experiences as an agent,...

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The Moon and Sixpence

The Moon and Sixpence

W. Somerset Maugham

Charles Strickland, a conventional stockbroker, abandons his wife and children for Paris and Tahiti, to live his life as a painter. Whilst his betrayal of family, duty and honour gives him the freedom to achieve greatness, his...

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To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird

Harper Lee

'Someone rare has written this very fine novel, a write with the liveliest sense of life and the warmest, most authentic humor. A touching book; and so funny, so likeable' Truman Capote

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Gulliver's Travels: and Alexander Pope's Verses on  Gulliver's Travels

Gulliver’s Travels: and Alexander Pope’s Verses on Gulliver’s Travels

Jonathan Swift

In the course of his famous travels, Gulliver is captured by miniature people who wage war on each other because of religious disagreement over how to crack eggs, is sexually assaulted by giants, visits a floating island, and...

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Emma

Emma

Jane Austen

Emma is young, rich and independent. She has decided not to get married and instead spends her time organising her acquaintances' love affairs. Her plans for the matrimonial success of her new friend Harriet, however, lead her...

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Beloved

Beloved

Toni Morrison

Terrible, unspeakable things happened to Sethe at Sweet Home, the farm where she lived as a slave for so many years until she escaped to Ohio. Her new life is full of hope but eighteen years later she is still not free. Sethe's...

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The Palace of Dreams

The Palace of Dreams

Ismail Kadare, Barbara Bray

At the heart of the Sultan's empire stands the Palace of Dreams. Inside, the dreams of every citizen are collected, sorted and interpreted in order to identify the 'master-dreams' that will provide the clues to the Empire's...

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Broken April

Broken April

Ismail Kadare

After shooting his brother's killer, young Gjorg is entitled to thirty days' grace - not enough to see out the month of April. Then a visiting honeymoon couple cross the path of the fugitive. The bride's heart goes out to Gjorg,...

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Caledonia Australis: Scottish Highlanders on the Frontier of Australia

Caledonia Australis: Scottish Highlanders on the Frontier of Australia

Don Watson

After their military defeat in 1745, the Scottish Highlanders suffered a worse humiliation. They were displaced from their ancestral lands. This is a tale of their dispossession. It also tells the rout of another people, the...

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Gullivers Travels Film Tie In

Gullivers Travels Film Tie In

Jonathan Swift

In the course of his famous travels, Gulliver is captured by miniature people who wage war on each other because of religious disagreement over how to crack eggs, is sexually assaulted by giants, visits a floating island, and...

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Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Stories

Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and Other Stories

Robert Louis Stevenson

Dr Jekyll has been experimenting with his identity. He has developed a drug which separates the two sides of his nature and allows him to occasionally abandon himself to his most corrupt inclinations as the monstrous Mr Hyde. But...

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I Capture the Castle

I Capture the Castle

Dodie Smith, Valerie Grove

Cassandra Mortmain lives with her impoverished family in a crumbling castle. Her journal records her life with her bored sister Rose, her stepmother Topaz, her little brother Thomas and her novelist father who suffers from a...

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Midnight's Children

Midnight’s Children

Salman Rushdie

Born at the stroke of midnight at the exact moment of India's independence, Saleem Sinai is a special child. However, this coincidence of birth has consequences he is not prepared for: telepathic powers connect him with 1,000...

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Ten Novels and Their Authors

Ten Novels and Their Authors

W. Somerset Maugham

A guide that studies the lives and masterpieces of ten great novelists.

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The Bell

The Bell

Iris Murdoch, A. S. Byatt

Dora Greenfield, erring wife, returns to live with her husband in a lay community encamped outside Imber Abbey, home to a mysterious enclosed order of nuns. Watched over by its devout director and the discreet authority of the...

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Mrs. Craddock

Mrs. Craddock

W. Somerset Maugham

Bertha Ley comes of age, inherits her father's money and promptly marries a handsome, calm and unimaginative man. Bertha is wildly in love with Edward and believes she can be happy playing the role of a dutiful wife in their...

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The Summing Up

The Summing Up

W. Somerset Maugham

Presents an avowal of a professional author's ideas about style, literature, art, drama and philosophy, and also an illuminating insight into this great writer's craft.

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