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 End of the Affair

The End of the Affair

Graham Greene, Monica Ali

The love affair between Maurice Bendix and Sarah, flourishing in the turbulent times of the London Blitz, ends when she suddenly and without explanation breaks it off. After a chance meeting rekindles his love and jealousy two...

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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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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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Money

Money

Martin Amis

John Self is a consumer extraordinaire. Rolling around New York and London, he makes deals, spends wildly and does reckless movie-world business, all the while grabbing everything he can to sate his massive appetites: alcohol,...

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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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A Spot of Bother

A Spot of Bother

Mark Haddon

At fifty-seven, George is settling down to a comfortable retirement. Then Katie, his tempestuous daughter, announces that she is getting remarried, to Ray. Her mother Jean is a bit put out by all the arguing the wedding has...

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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

Includes what you need to know about where to meet a beau, how to handle illicit affairs and how to maintain your allure.

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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 a Latin American poet's individualistic verse, rooted in the physical landscape and people of Chile. This title includes songs of love, tender odes to the sea, melancholy lyrics of heartache, fiery political statements...

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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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Claudine Married

Claudine Married

Colette, Antonia White

Claudine's marriage to Renaud has settled into a pattern of bickering and inattention. Just as she begins to fear herself confined to a stifled existence, a chance meeting with a friend's wife, the beautiful Rezi, draws her into...

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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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Claudine in Paris

Claudine in Paris

Colette, Antonia White

Claudine is in despair, having left her beloved Montigny for a new life in Paris. But her instinctive curiosity gradually leads to an awakened interest in the city. She records her witty observations and adventures amongst the...

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The Last of Cheri

The Last of Cheri

Colette

A sequel to Cheri : as Cheri's looks and his reputation begin to deteriorate, his life is thrown into crisis and he finds it impossible to settle down to a new life with his efficient, entrepreneurial wife, Lea, and friends.

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Gigi: and, The Cat

Gigi: and, The Cat

Colette

Gigi's days are filled with cigars, lobster, lace and superstitions: the education of a future courtesan. Bored and unconvinced by what she's taught, Gigi surprises all with her approach to love.

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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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The Sound of One Hand Clapping

The Sound of One Hand Clapping

Richard Flanagan

'A truly extraordinary work: vivid, passionate and utterly compelling ... It opens a world that is strange, brutal and poetic at once, and ultimately achieves he kind of spirit-healing few novels do' Niall Williams, author of Four...

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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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Everything Flows

Everything Flows

Vasily Grossman, Robert Chandler

Ivan Grigoryevich has been in the Gulag for thirty years. Released after Stalin's death, he finds that the years of terror have imposed a collective moral slavery. He must struggle to find a place for himself in an unfamiliar...

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The Wild Palms

The Wild Palms

William Faulkner

In New Orleans in 1937, a man and woman embark on a headlong flight into the wilderness of illicit passion. In Mississippi ten years earlier, a convict sets forth across a flooded river, risking his one chance at freedom to rescue...

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Vertigo

Vertigo

W. G. Sebald

At moments when reality shows itself to be unstable or uncanny, we experience a form of vertigo. This experience is further complicated when we try to transform experience into writing, and fact clashes with memory. Sebald's...

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The Three Musketeers

The Three Musketeers

Alexandre Dumas

The young D'Artagnan travels to Paris determined to join King Louis XIII's elite guards. Hot-headed and raring to prove himself, D'Artagnan challenges three strangers to a duel. These strangers are none other than the daring band...

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The Call of the Wild and White Fang

The Call of the Wild and White Fang

Jack London

Buck is the pampered offspring of a St Bernard and a shepherd dog. When men find gold in the Yukon, Buck's comfortable life in the sun-kissed Santa Clara Valley comes to an end. Kidnapped and dragged away to be a sledge dog in the...

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Sanctuary

Sanctuary

William Faulkner

Spolit, feckless Temple Drake, the daughter of a judge, runs away from school with an unsuitable man. Abandoned by him with a gang of moonshiners, Temple falls into the clutches of the psychotic Popeye.

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The Sea-Hawk

The Sea-Hawk

Rafael Sabatini, Ben Kane

Oliver Tressilian, a Cornish gentleman, is blessed with 'youth, wealth, and good digestion'. He is betrayed by his half-brother and becomes a renegade and Barbary corsair winning the title of Sakr-el-Bahr - hawk of the sea.

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The House of the Spirits

The House of the Spirits

Isabel Allende

As a girl, Clara del Valle can read fortunes, make objects move as if they had lives of their own, and predict the future. Following the mysterious death of her sister, Rosa the Beautiful, Clara is mute for nine years. When she...

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Selected Stories

Selected Stories

John O'Hara

Presents stories that expose the world of bartenders and 'b-girls', car washers and criminals. This title dissects the subtleties that bind humans together and the pressures that separate them.

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A Rage to Live

A Rage to Live

John O'Hara

When the beautiful, imperious and moneyed Grace Caldwell Tate wants something she goes after it. Her affair scandalises Pennsylvania's elite and she must face the costs to her marriage and the man she really loves.

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The Campus Trilogy

The Campus Trilogy

David Lodge

Beginning in the late 60s Changing Places follows the undistinguished English lecturer Philip Swallow and hotshot American professor Morris Zapp as they exchange jobs, habitats and eventually wives. Small World sees Swallow, Zapp,...

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Westwood

Westwood

Stella Gibbons, Lynne Truss

Margaret Steggles, a plain bookish girl whose mother has told her that she is 'not the type that attracts men'. What she lacks for in looks she makes up for with a romantic nature and cultural aspirations - she goes to concerts at...

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Starlight

Starlight

Stella Gibbons

Gladys and Annie Barnes are impoverished sisters who have seen better times. They live in a modest cottage in the backstreets of Highate with Mr Fisher, a mild but eccentric old man living secretively in the attic above them....

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Doctor Zhivago

Doctor Zhivago

Boris Pasternak, Larissa Volokhonsky, Richard Pevear

Taking his family from Moscow to what he hopes will be shelter in the Ural Mountains, Yuri Zhivago finds himself instead embroiled in the battle between the Whites and the Reds, and in love with the tender and beautiful nurse...

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While Mortals Sleep

While Mortals Sleep

Kurt Vonnegut

A travelling salesman falls in love a robot, Jenny, a refrigerator with personality. A man plays with his model trains too much until the women in his life decide to take matters into their own hands.

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Voltaire in Love

Voltaire in Love

Nancy Mitford

The meeting of Voltaire, successful financier, famous poet and troublemaker, and the enchanting amateur physicist and countess Emilie du Chatelet, was a meeting of both hearts and minds. In the Chateau de Cirey, the two brilliant...

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The Sun King

The Sun King

Nancy Mitford, Stella Tillyard

During his reign Louis XIV was the most powerful king in Europe. He presided over a golden age of military and artistic achievement in France, and deployed his charm and talents for spin and intrigue to hold his court and country...

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Madame De Pompadour

Madame De Pompadour

Nancy Mitford

When Jeanne-Antoinette was nine, she was told by a fortune teller that she would one day become the mistress of the handsome young Louix XV - from that day she was groomed to become 'a morsel fit for a King'. This title tells the...

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Madame Bovary

Madame Bovary

Gustave Flaubert, Adam Thorpe

Exquisite, moving, at times ferociously satirical and always psychologically acute, Madame Bovary remains one of the greatest, most beguiling novels ever written. This title presents a translation of Madame Bovary .

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Ghost Stories

Ghost Stories

M. R. James, Ruth Rendell

The author wrote his ghost stories to entertain friends on Christmas Eve, and they went on to both transform and modernise a genre. He harnesses the power of suggestion to move from a recognisable world to one that is indefinably...

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Frederick the Great

Frederick the Great

Nancy Mitford, Kate Williams

Frederick II of Prussia attempted to escape his authoritarian father as a boy, but went on to become one of history's greatest rulers. He loved the flute, and devoted hours of study to the arts and French literature, forming a...

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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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Love

Love

Angela Carter, Audrey Niffenegger

Charts the destructive emotional war between a young woman, her husband and his disruptive brother as they move through a labyrinth of betrayal, alienation and lost connections. This revised edition evokes the ebb of the 1960s,...

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Jailbird

Jailbird

Kurt Vonnegut

Pay attention please to the life of Walter F Starbuck. 1913, gave him the gift of life. 1970, gave him a job in the Nixon White House. 1975, sent him to prison for his part in the 'Watergate' scandal. Now he is coming out of jail,...

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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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Conference at Cold Comfort Farm

Conference at Cold Comfort Farm

Stella Gibbons, Alexander McCall Smith, Libby Purves

Robert Poste's child is back at Cold Comfort Farm. But all is not well. Flora finds the farm transformed into a twee haven filled with Toby jugs and peasant pottery, and rooms labeled'Quiete Retreate' and 'Greate laundrie'. It is,...

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The Captain and the Enemy

The Captain and the Enemy

Graham Greene

A young boy, Victor, is collected from school by a stranger in a bowler hat - the stranger says he has won Victor in a game of backgammon with Victor's father. The stranger, known as the Captain, takes Victor to live with the...

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A Novel

A Novel

Andy Warhol

In the late 1960s Andy Warhol, one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century, set out to turn an ordinary book into a piece of pop art. This title was created from audiotapes recorded in and around the Factory...

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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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The Cave

The Cave

Jose Saramago

Cipriano and his daughter craft a new line of small ceramic figurines and the Centre orders cast quantities and then recants. Resigned to idleness, Cipriano moves to a soulless megaplex, until late one night he comes across a...

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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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Charlotte Bronte

Charlotte Bronte

Rebecca Fraser

'If men could see us as we really are, they would be amazed', wrote Charlotte Bronte, the outwardly conventional parson's daughter who had rarely met any men beyond those of the church or classroom in 1847. This book places...

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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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An Accidental Man

An Accidental Man

Iris Murdoch

Austin is one of those people who needs to survive through the destruction of others. The others, in Austin's case, include his successful elder brothers, Matthew, and the women who, one after the other, are so touchingly...

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The Red and the Green

The Red and the Green

Iris Murdoch

The scene is Ireland. The time, 1916, is the eve of the famous, tragic Easter Rebellion in Dublin, which startled Europe even in the midst of the First World War. A single Anglo Irish family provides the extremely diverse...

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A Word Child

A Word Child

Iris Murdoch

Saved from a delinquent childhood by education, cheated out of Oxford by a tragic love tangle, Hilary Burde cherishes his obsessive guilt and ekes out a living in a dull civil service job.

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A Severed Head

A Severed Head

Iris Murdoch, Miranda Seymour

Martin believes he can possess both a beautiful wife and a delightful lover. But when his wife, Antonia, suddenly leaves him for her psychoanalyst, Martin is plunged into an intensive emotional re-education. Then he meets a woman...

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The Nice and the Good

The Nice and the Good

Iris Murdoch

A revolver shot rings through a Whitehall office one hot afternoon in the middle of an English summer. A Government official has apparently shot himself, but the circumstances are questionable - prompting Octavian Gray, head of...

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The Unicorn

The Unicorn

Iris Murdoch, Stephen Medcalf

When Marian Taylor takes the post of governess at Gaze castle, remote house on a beautiful but desolate coast, she finds herself confronted with many strange mysteries. What kind of crime or catastrophe in the past still keeps the...

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Nuns and Soldiers

Nuns and Soldiers

Iris Murdoch

Gertrude has lost her husband and Anne, an ex-nun, her God. They plan to live together and do good works. Tim is a different sort of soldier. He plans to live off rich friends. Who will judge whom in this story?

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The Italian Girl

The Italian Girl

Iris Murdoch

Edmund has escaped from his family into a lonely life. Returning for his mother's funeral he finds himself involved in the old, awful problems, together with some new ones. One by one his relatives reveal their secrets to a...

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The Philosopher's Pupil

The Philosopher’s Pupil

Iris Murdoch

In the English town of Ennistone, hot springs bubble up from deep beneath the earth. In these healing waters the townspeople seek health and regeneration, rightousness and ritual cleansing. To this town steeped in ancient lore and...

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The Book and the Brotherhood

The Book and the Brotherhood

Iris Murdoch

A group of liberal-minded intellectuals get together in their youth to subsidize their friend, David Crimond, to write the definitive book about their political beliefs. Now, years later, there is no sign of the book, but Crimond...

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Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals

Metaphysics as a Guide to Morals

Iris Murdoch

Can we reject the literal truth of the Gospels, yet still retain a Christian morality? Can we defence any moral values against the constant enroachments of technology? Indeed, are we in danger of losing most of the qualities which...

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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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The Atom Station

The Atom Station

Halldor Laxness

When the Americans make an offer to buy Icelandic land to build an atomic war base, a storm of protest is provoked. Told by a country girl from the north, this novel follows her experiences upon taking up employment as a maid in...

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The Tin Drum

The Tin Drum

Gunter Grass

Delivers a scathing dissection of the years from 1925 to 1955 through the eyes of Oskar Matzerath, the dwarf whose manic beating on the toy of his retarded childhood fantastically counterpoints the accumulating horrors of Germany...

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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

This moving fable 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...

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Loving, Living, Party Going

Loving, Living, Party Going

Henry Green

Brings together three of the author's original novels. He explores class distinctions through the medium of love. This book presents a comedy of manners, presenting a party of wealthy travellers stranded by fog in a London railway...

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Jacob's Room

Jacob’s Room

Virginia Woolf, Lawrence Norfolk, Elisabeth Bronfen

A portrait of a young man, tracing his life from childhood, to Cambridge University, and to his early adult life in artistic London. Jacob always yearns for something greater, and embarks on a voyage to the Mediterranean before...

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A Gun for Sale: An Entertainment

A Gun for Sale: An Entertainment

Graham Greene

Raven is an ugly man dedicated to ugly deeds. The money he receives in payment for the killing of the Minister of War is made up of stolen notes. When the first of these is traced, Raven is a man on the run. As he tracks down the...

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A Burnt-out Case

A Burnt-out Case

Graham Greene, Giles Foden

Querry, a world famous architect, is the victim of a terrible attack of indifference: he no longer finds meaning in art or pleasure in life. Arriving anonymously at a Congo leper village, he is diagnosed as the mental equivalent...

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The Double

The Double

Jose Saramago

What happens when Deadline M-ximo Afonso, a 38-year-old professor of history, discovers that there is a man living in the same city who is identical to him on every physical detail, but not related by blood at all. And what...

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Mr Weston's Good Wine

Mr Weston’s Good Wine

T.F. Powys

Presents a tale of the struggle between the forces of good and evil in a small Dorset village.

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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

After being demobbed 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, the colour of his skin will...

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Three Men in a Boat: To Say Nothing of the Dog!

Three Men in a Boat: To Say Nothing of the Dog!

Jerome K. Jerome, Vic Reeves

Three men and a dog decide to head for a restful vacation on the Thames. Anticipating peace and leisure, they encounter, in fact, the joys of roughing it, of getting their boat stuck in locks, of being towed by amateurs, of having...

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Trainspotting

Trainspotting

Irvine Welsh

A jarring, fragmented ride through the dark underbelly of Edinburgh, the festival city. There is not an advocate, a festival performer or a fur coat in sight as, with bitter passion and rancid humour, Welsh lays bare the lives of...

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Life and Fate

Life and Fate

Vasily Grossman, Linda Grant

An epic tale of a country told through the fate of a single family, the Shaposhnikovs.

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In Search of Lost Time

In Search of Lost Time

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

Travelling backwards in time, the narrator tells the story of a love affair that had taken place before his own birth.

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The Bridge on the River Kwai

The Bridge on the River Kwai

Pierre Boulle

Tells the story of three POWs who endure the hell of the Japanese camps on the Burma-Siam railway - Colonel Nicholson, a man prepared to sacrifice his life but not his dignity; Major Warden, a modest hero, saboteur and deadly...

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Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Journey to the Centre of the Earth

Jules Verne

After decoding a scrap of paper in runic script, the intrepid Professor Lidenbrock and his nervous nephew Axel travel across Iceland to find the secret passage to the centre of the earth. Enlisting the silent Hans as a guide, the...

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The Call of Cthulu and Other Weird Tales

The Call of Cthulu and Other Weird Tales

H. P. Lovecraft

Lets you find things that lurk, things that scurry in the walls, things that move unseen, things that have learnt to walk that ought to crawl, unfathomable blackness, unconquerable evil, inhuman impulses, abnormal bodies, ancient...

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Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea

Jules Verne

Professor Aronnax embarks on an expedition to hunt down and destroy a menacing sea monster. However, he discovers that the beast is metal - it is a giant submarine called the Nautilus built by the renegade scientist Captain Nemo....

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Planet of the Apes

Planet of the Apes

Pierre Boulle

In a spaceship that can travel at the speed of light, Ulysse, a journalist, sets off from Earth for the nearest solar system. He finds there a planet which resembles his own, but on Soror humans behave like animals, and are hunted...

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The Lost World

The Lost World

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

The notorious Professor Challenger claims that dinosaurs still walk the earth. When the press and the scientific community ridicule him, Challenger vows to show them proof. And so he sets off for South America, accompanied by a...

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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. Her encounter with her manipulative cousin, Alec, leads her onto a path that is beset with suffering and betrayal. When she...

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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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Eugenie Grandet

Eugenie Grandet

Honore de Balzac

Monsieur Grandet is a very rich man whose chief care is his gold. He runs his household with exacting miserly attention and his wife and daughter suffer a Spartan existence. On the evening of his daughter Eugenie's twenty third...

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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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Death in Venice and Other Stories

Death in Venice and Other Stories

Thomas Mann

Gustav von Aschenbach, a successful ageing writer, travels to Venice for a holiday. One day, Aschenbach notices an exceptionally beautiful young boy. Soon his days begin to revolve around seeing this boy and he is too distracted...

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Save Me the Waltz

Save Me the Waltz

Zelda Fitzgerald

Presents the story of the confessional of a famous glamour girl of the affluent 1920s and an aspiring ballerina which captures the spirit of an era.

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Medea

Medea

Euripides, Robin Robertson

Medea has been abandoned by her husband. Jason, for whom she has sacrificed so much, has left her and their two children for a younger woman. His new bride is the daughter of the most powerful man in Corinth and Medea and the boys...

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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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Doctor Zhivago

Doctor Zhivago

Boris Pasternak

Doctor Zhivago is the epic novel of Russia in the throes of revolution and one of the greatest love stories ever told.

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When Love Speaks: Poetry and Prose for Weddings, Relationships and Married Life.

When Love Speaks: Poetry and Prose for Weddings, Relationships and Married Life.

Adam O'Riordan

An anthology that brings together the writing on love and commitment - from Donne to Cole Porter, Sappho to PG Wodehouse, love letters of the great composers to Edwardian marriage advice. It provides a range of readings for a...

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Sons and Lovers

Sons and Lovers

D. H. Lawrence, Richard Eyre

Paul Morel is the focus of his disappointed and fiercely protective mother's life. Their tender, devoted and intense bond comes under strain when Paul falls in love with Miriam Leivers, a local girl his mother disapproves of.

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Moonfleet

Moonfleet

John Meade Falkner

Orphaned John Trenchard grows up in the village of Moonfleet with his aunt, entranced by the local legend of the ghostly Blackbeard, who rises each winter night to search for his lost diamond. While conducting his own hunt for the...

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Barnaby Rudge

Barnaby Rudge

Charles Dickens

Barnaby Rudge is a young innocent simpleton who is devoted to his talkative raven, Grip. When he gets caught up in the mayhem of the Gordon riots and a mysterious unsolved murder, his life is put in jeopardy.

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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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Mapp and Lucia

Mapp and Lucia

E. F. Benson

Miss Elizabeth Mapp reigns supreme over the village of Tilling... until the advent of Mrs Emmeline Lucas, or 'Lucia' to her friends. No one could compete, surely, with Lucia's formidable armoury: her duchesses, her Italian, her...

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The Rainbow

The Rainbow

D. H. Lawrence, Rachel Cusk

Set between the 1840s and the early years of the twentieth century, this title tells the story of three generations of the Brangwen family, ancient occupiers of Marsh Farm, Nottinghamshire.

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Nicholas Nickleby

Nicholas Nickleby

Charles Dickens

When Nicholas' father dies he, his mother and sister are left penniless. To earn his keep, Nicholas becomes a tutor at Dotheboys Hall but soon discovers that the headmaster, Wackford Squeers, is a one-eyed tyrant who insists on a...

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The Essential Hemingway

The Essential Hemingway

Ernest Hemingway

Brings together a wide selection of the author's works, that offers an introduction to his extensive writing. This title includes the full text of Fiesta ; and, long extracts from his three works of fiction, A Farewell to Arms ,...

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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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The Green Man

The Green Man

Kingsley Amis

Dr Thomas Underhill, a notorious seventeenth-century practitioner of black arts and sexual deviancy. However, the landlord, Maurice Allington, is the sole witness to the renaissance of the malevolent Underhill. Led by an anxious...

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You Can't Do Both

You Can’t Do Both

Kingsley Amis

Robin Davies knows how to look after number one. Raised in a bland suburb of South London in the 1930s, Robin longs for the freedom to do what he wants. When he escapes to study in Oxford, he meets Nancy Bennett, a young woman...

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The House of Mirth

The House of Mirth

Edith Wharton

Lily Bart has no fortune, but she possesses everything else she needs to make an excellent marriage: beauty, intelligence, a love of luxury and an elegant skill in negotiating the hidden traps and false friends of New York's high...

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Annapurna: The First Conquest of an 8000- Metre Peak

Annapurna: The First Conquest of an 8000- Metre Peak

Maurice Herzog, Joe Simpson

In 1950, no mountain higher than 8,000 meters had ever been climbed. Maurice Herzog and other members of the French Alpine Club resolved to try. This title tells the story of the first conquest of Annapurna and the harrowing...

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The Journals

The Journals

John Fowles

In 1963 John Fowles won international recognition with his first published novel The Collector. But his roots as a serious writer can be traced back long before to the journal he began as a student at Oxford in the late 1940s and...

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Daniel Martin

Daniel Martin

John Fowles

Daniel Martin is a screenwriter working in Hollywood, who finds himself dissatisfied with his career and with the person he has become. So he travels home to reconcile with a dying friend, and also to visit his own forgotten past...

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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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 Special priceCrome Yellow

Crome Yellow

Aldous Huxley

Denis Stone, a naive young poet, is invited to stay at Crome, a country house renowned for its gatherings of 'bright young things'. His hosts, Henry Wimbush and his exotic wife Priscilla, are joined by a party of colourful guests...

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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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The Devils of Loudon

The Devils of Loudon

Aldous Huxley

In 1634 Urbain Grandier, a handsome and dissolute priest of the parish of Loudun was tried, tortured and burnt at the stake. He had been found guilty of conspiring with the devil to seduce an entire convent of nuns in what was the...

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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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Clochemerle

Clochemerle

Gabriel Chevallier

Clochemerle satirizes the titanic confrontation of secular and religious forces in a small wine-growing village in Beaujolais which begins when the mayor, wishing to leave behind a monument to his administration's achievements,...

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Birdsong

Birdsong

Sebastian Faulks

Set in France before and during World War I, this is the story of a young Englishman who is impelled through a series of extreme experiences, from a traumatic clandestine love affair which tears apart the bourgeois French family...

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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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Tender is the Night

Tender is the Night

F. Scott Fitzgerald

It is the French Riviera in the 1920s. Nicole and Dick Diver are a wealthy, elegant, magnetic couple. A coterie of admirers are drawn to them, none more so than the blooming young starlet Rosemary Hoyt. When Rosemary falls for...

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The Beautiful and Damned

The Beautiful and Damned

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Anthony Patch and Gloria Gibson are the golden children of the Jazz Age. They marry and embark on a life of glittering parties, lavish expenditure and scandalous revelry. When the money dries up their marriage founders.

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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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America

America

Franz Kafka

Presents the story of Karl Rossman who, after an embarrassing sexual misadventure with a servant girl, is banished to America by his parents. Expected to redeem himself in the magical land of opportunity, he instead gets swept up...

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Requiem for a Wren

Requiem for a Wren

Nevil Shute

Alan Duncan returns to his family home in Australia after the war and several years of study in England. But his homecoming is marred by the mysterious suicide of his parents' quiet and reliable parlour-maid. A search through her...

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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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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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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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The Diary of a Nobody

The Diary of a Nobody

George Grossmith, Weedon Grossmith

Mr Charles Pooter has just moved into a home in Holloway with his dear wife Carrie. Unfortunately neither his friends Mr Cummings and Mr Gowing, nor the butcher, the greengrocer's boy and the Lord Mayor seem to recognise Mr...

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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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The Road to Oxiana

The Road to Oxiana

Robert Byron

In 1933, the delightfully eccentric Robert Byron set out on a journey through the Middle East via Beirut, Jerusalem, Baghdad and Teheran to Oxiana. This title presents a record of his adventures and an account of the architectural...

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Will 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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Captain Corelli's Mandolin

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Louis de Bernieres

It is 1941 and Captain Antonio Corelli, a young Italian officer, is posted to the Greek island of Cephallonia as part of the occupying forces. At first he is ostracised by the locals, but as a conscientious but far from fanatical...

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Power without Glory

Power without Glory

Frank Hardy

John West rose from a Melbourne slum to dominate Australian politics with bribery, brutality and fear. His attractive wife and their children turned away from him in horror. Friends dropped away. At the peak of his power,...

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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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Eyeless in Gaza

Eyeless in Gaza

Aldous Huxley

Anthony Beavis is a man inclined to recoil from life. His past is haunted by the death of his friend Brian and by his entanglement with the cynical and manipulative Mary Amberley. Realising that his determined detachment from the...

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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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A Special Providence

A Special Providence

Richard Yates

Bobby is eighteen and lost on the battlefields of Europe, stumbling his way through World War II. He has turned out to be the heroic soldier he imagined and his experience of battle principally involves fear and confusion. Back...

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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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The Malayan Trilogy

The Malayan Trilogy

Anthony Burgess

Victor Crabbe is a well meaning, ineffectual English man in the tropics, keen to teach the Malays what the West can do for them. Through Crabbe's rise and fall and a series of characters, this title lays bare racial and social...

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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 Berlin Novels: Mr Norris Changes Trains ,  Goodbye to Berlin

The Berlin Novels: Mr Norris Changes Trains , Goodbye to Berlin

Christopher Isherwood

Includes novels Mr Norris Changes Trains and Goodbye to Berlin .

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Fiesta

Fiesta

Ernest Hemingway

Paris in the twenties: Pernod, parties and expatriate Americans, loose-living on money from home. Jake is wildly in love with Brett Ashley, aristocratic and irresistibly beautiful, with an abandoned, sensuous nature that she...

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Earthly Powers

Earthly Powers

Anthony Burgess

Kenneth Toomey is an eminent novelist of dubious talent; Don Carlo Campanati is a man of God, a shrewd manipulator who rises through the Vatican to become the architect of church revolution and a candidate for sainthood. In this...

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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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The Worm Forgives the Plough

The Worm Forgives the Plough

John Stewart Collis, Robert Macfarlane

Set in the south of England, this book captures the soft-handed, city-dweller's naivety and wonder both at the workings of nature and the toughness of life on a farm. It contains sections on whatever happens to take the author's...

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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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Breakfast of Champions

Breakfast of Champions

Kurt Vonnegut

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

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A Time in Rome

A Time in Rome

Elizabeth Bowen

Presenting an account of a time spent in Rome, the author describes its history, its architecture, its atmosphere, and the famous classical sites in the city.

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The Pickwick Papers

The Pickwick Papers

Charles Dickens

Tells the tale of the irrepressible Mr Pickwick and his fellow Pickwick Club members who travel around the English countryside getting into all kinds of scrapes and adventures.

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They Came Like Swallows

They Came Like Swallows

William Maxwell

Elizabeth Morison is an ordinary woman. Yet to eight-year-old Bunny, his mother is the centre of his universe. To his older brother, Robert, she is someone he must protect against the dangers of the outside world. And to James...

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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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Mansfield Park

Mansfield Park

Jane Austen

Fanny Price's rich relatives offer her a place in their home so that she can be properly brought up. Her only ally is her cousin Edmund. When her cousins befriend two glamorous new young people who have arrived in the area, Edmund...

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Mary Barton

Mary Barton

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

Mary Barton rejects her childhood friend Jem's affections in the hope of marrying Henry, mill-owner's charming son, and escaping from the hard and bitter life that is the fate of the mill workers. But when Henry is shot dead in...

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The Thirty Nine Steps

The Thirty Nine Steps

John Buchan, Stella Rimington

It's May, 1914. Britain is on the eve of war with Germany. Richard Hannay is living a quiet life in London, but after a chance encounter with a mysterious stranger he stumbles into a hair-raising adventure - a desperate hunt...

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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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The Old Man and the Sea

The Old Man and the Sea

Ernest Hemingway

Set in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Havana, this work presents the tale of an old man, a young boy and a giant fish. It is a story of heroic endeavour and of the beauty and grief of man's challenge to the elements.

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

Slaughterhouse 5: 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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Inferno

Inferno

Dante Alighieri, Steve Ellis

One evening, Dante finds himself lost in a dark and menacing wood. The ghost of Virgil offers to lead him to safety but the path lies through the terrifying kingdom of Satan, where Dante witnesses the strange and gruesome...

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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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The Heart of the Matter

The Heart of the Matter

Graham Greene, James Wood

Scobie, a police officer serving in a war-time West African state, is distrusted, being scrupulously honest and immune to bribery. But then he falls in love, and in doing so he is forced to betray everything he believes in, with...

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The Emigrants

The Emigrants

W. G. Sebald, Michael Hulse

Documents the lives of four Jewish emigres in the twentieth century.

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Doctor Zhivago

Doctor Zhivago

Boris Pasternak

Yuri Zhivago, physician and poet, wrestles with the new order and confronts the changes cruel experience has made in him and the anguish of being torn between the love of two women. This novel talks about Russia in the throes of...

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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, and a spokesman for (and against) an Australia he both hated and loved. The author secured White's co-operation...

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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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The True History of the Kelly Gang

The True History of the Kelly Gang

Peter Carey

In this book, the legendary Ned Kelly speaks for himself, scribbling his narrative on errant scraps of paper in semi-literate but magically descriptive prose as he flees from the police.

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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: Revised and with New Material

The Leopard: Revised and with New Material

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 Complete Novels of Kafka

The Complete Novels of Kafka

Franz Kafka

Includes novels which are intended to be read as allegories of totalitarian government in whatever guise it appears.

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Little Women and Good Wives

Little Women and Good Wives

Louisa May Alcott

Sensible Meg, impetuous Jo, shy Beth and artistic Amy each have to confront different challenges as they grow up together and attempt to learn how to be both happy and good. This book tells the story of four very different March...

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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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On The Beach

On The Beach

Nevil Shute

After the war is over, a radioactive cloud begins to sweep southwards on the winds, gradually poisoning everything in its path. An American submarine captain is among the survivors left sheltering in Australia, preparing with the...

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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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Jake's Thing

Jake’s Thing

Kingsley Amis

Jake Richardson, an Oxford don nearing sixty with a lifetime's lechery behind him, is in pursuit of his lost libido and heads off to the consulting room of a miniature sex therapist. Not one to disobey a doctor's orders, he runs...

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The Old Devils

The Old Devils

Kingsley Amis

Malcolm, Peter and Charlie and their Soave-sodden wives have one main ambition left in life: to drink Wales dry. But their routine is both shaken and stirred when they are joined by professional Welshman Alun Weaver (CBE) and his...

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The Rachel Papers

The Rachel Papers

Martin Amis

Charles Highway, a precociously intelligent and highly sexed teenager, is determined to sleep with an older woman before he turns twenty. Rachel fits the bill perfectly and Charles plans his seduction meticulously, sets the scene...

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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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Three Plays: Absurd Person ,  Singular, Absent Friends ,  Bedroom Farce

Three Plays: Absurd Person , Singular, Absent Friends , Bedroom Farce

Alan Ayckbourn

Features settings that are simple - a kitchen, a bedroom, a party - and the relationships between the husbands and wives that are more complicated. This title presents fraught relationships with humour, bathos and an understanding...

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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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Peter Pan

Peter Pan

J. M. Barrie

Wendy, Michael and John are sleeping when the window of their nursery blows open and lets in a very remarkable boy, Peter Pan, and his fairy, Tinker Bell. Peter soon entices the three children from their beds and out through the...

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Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography

Camera Lucida: Reflections on Photography

Roland Barthes, Richard Howard

Examines the themes of presence and absence, the relationship between photography and theatre, history and death. This title offers an investigation into the nature of photographs.

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Mythologies

Mythologies

Roland Barthes, Annette Lavers

A collection of essays that explores the myths of mass culture. It deciphers the symbols and signs embedded deep in familiar aspects of modern life, unmasking the hidden ideologies and meanings which implicitly affect our thought...

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Poems: Introduction by Patti Smith

Poems: Introduction by Patti Smith

William Blake, Patti Smith

William Blake is one of Britain's most fascinating writers, who, as well as being a groundbreaking poet, is also well known as a painter, engraver, radical and mystic. This collection brings together a selection of Blake's poems,...

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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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The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

Anne Bronte

When the mysterious and beautiful young widow Helen Graham becomes the new tenant at Wildfell Hall rumours immediately begin to swirl around her. As her neighbour Gilbert Markham comes to discover, Helen has painful secrets buried...

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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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The Complete Fairy Tales

The Complete Fairy Tales

Jacob Grimm, Wilhelm Grimm, Jack Zipes

Wolves and grandmothers, ugly sisters, a house made of bread, a goose made of gold. This is a collection of folk tales collected by the Grimm brothers.

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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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A Dead Man in Deptford

A Dead Man in Deptford

Anthony Burgess

Poet, lover and spy, Christopher Marlowe must negotiate the pressures placed upon him by theatre, Queen and country. This title re-imagines the riotous life and suspicious death of Christopher Marlowe. It brings this dazzling...

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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

Possession is an exhilarating novel of wit and romance, at once a literary detective novel and a triumphant love story. It is the tale of a pair of young scholars investigating the lives of two Victorian poets. Following a trail...

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Villette

Villette

Charlotte Bronte

When Lucy Snowe leaves England to look for a new life on the Continent she has no idea what lies in store for her. This quiet, lonely girl must learn quickly when she finds herself teaching in a foreign school, with no friends or...

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Adam, One Afternoon

Adam, One Afternoon

Italo Calvino

A collection of fables. It is populated with waifs and strays, a gluttonous thief and a mischievous gardener. It features a comic story The Argentine Ant .

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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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Marcovaldo: Or the Seasons in the City

Marcovaldo: Or the Seasons in the City

Italo Calvino

A collection of twenty stories that are both melancholy and funny, farce and fantasy. It charts the struggles of an Italian peasant to reconcile country habits with urban life, combining comical disasters with a surrealistic view...

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Mr.Palomar

Mr.Palomar

Italo Calvino

Mr Palomar is a delightful eccentric whose chief activity is looking at things. He is seeking knowledge. Whether contemplating a fine cheese, a hungry gecko, a woman sunbathing topless or a flight of migrant starlings, Mr...

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Our Ancestors

Our Ancestors

Italo Calvino

A triptych of novels in one volume. Viscount Medardo is bisected by a cannonball on the plains of Bohemia; Baron Cosimo, aged 12, retires to the trees for the rest of his days; and Charlemagne's knight, Agiluf, is an empty suit of...

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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

One boring summer afternoon, Alice 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 croquet match. This story...

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The Bloody Chamber And Other Stories

The Bloody Chamber And Other Stories

Angela Carter

Includes tales that glitter and haunt.

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Cathedral

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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Don Quixote

Don Quixote

Miguel de Cervantes, Edith Grossmann

Widely regarded as the world's first modern novel, and one of the funniest and most tragic books ever written, Don Quixote chronicles the famous picaresque adventures of the noble knight-errant Don Quixote de La Mancha and his...

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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 20th century. In depicting the lives...

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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 Worst Journey In The World

The Worst Journey In The World

Apsley Cherry-Garrard

Presents an account of an expedition gone disastrously wrong. This book details scientific discovery and anecdotes of human resilience in a harsh environment, supported by diary excerpts and accounts from explorers.

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The Moonstone

The Moonstone

Wilkie Collins

When Rachel Verinder receives a gift of an astonishing yellow diamond from her bitter old uncle for her eighteenth birthday, she has no idea that the stone brings great danger with it. When the diamond goes missing during the...

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No Name

No Name

Wilkie Collins

After the tragic deaths of their parents, Magdalen and Norah discover the devastating news that they are both illegitimate and not entitled to any inheritance. Norah is forced to become a governess to earn her keep but Magdalen...

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The Woman in White

The Woman in White

Wilkie Collins

Marian and her sister Laura live a quiet life under their uncle's guardianship until Laura's marriage to Sir Percival Glyde. Sir Percival is a man of many secrets. Hence, Marian and the girls' drawing master, Walter, have to turn...

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The Heart of Darkness: and, Youth

The Heart of Darkness: and, Youth

Joseph Conrad

The silence of the jungle is broken only by the ominous sound of drumming. Life on the river is brutal and unknown threats lurk in the darkness. Marlow's decision to hunt down the mysterious Mr Kurtz, an ivory trader who is the...

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The Secret Agent: With an Introduction by Giles Foden

The Secret Agent: With an Introduction by Giles Foden

Joseph Conrad, Giles Foden

London is under threat. Frequent bomb threats and disturbances interrupt the lives of the city's inhabitants, who live in fear of the terrorists in their midst. One such terrorist is Verloc. He is the secret agent who is given the...

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Talleyrand

Talleyrand

Duff Cooper

Talleyrand is a silver-tongued master diplomat, infamous turncoat, peacekeeper and libertine. Talleyrand held high office in five successive regimes from France's Ancient Regime, into the Revolution of 1789, Robespierre's Terror,...

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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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Bleak House

Bleak House

Charles Dickens

'Jarndyce and Jardyce' is an infamous lawsuit that has been in process for generations. Nobody can remember exactly how the case started but many different individuals have found their fortunes caught up in it. Esther Summerson...

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A Christmas Carol

A Christmas Carol

Charles Dickens

Ebenezer Scrooge is unimpressed by Christmas. He has no time for festivities or goodwill toward his fellow men and is only interested in money. Then, on the night of Christmas Eve, his life is changed by a series of ghostly...

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David Copperfield

David Copperfield

Charles Dickens

When David Copperfield escapes from the cruelty of his childhood home, he embarks on a journey to adulthood which will lead him through comedy and tragedy, love and heartbreak and friendship and betrayal.

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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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Great Expectations

Great Expectations

Charles Dickens

Pip's life as an ordinary country boy is destined to be unexceptional until a chain of mysterious events lead him away from his humble origins and up the social ladder. His desire to improve himself is matched only by his longing...

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Hard Times

Hard Times

Charles Dickens

The children at Mr Gradgrind's school are sternly ordered to stifle their imaginations and pay attention only to cold, hard reality. They live in a smoky, troubled industrial town so entertainment is hard to come by and...

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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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Martin Chuzzlewit

Martin Chuzzlewit

Charles Dickens, Simon Callow

Wealthy old Martin Chuzzlewit is surrounded by a host of grasping, unscrupulous relatives and suspects the family vices of selfishness and greed are already showing in his grandson. The younger Martin is therefore cast out upon...

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The Old Curiosity Shop

The Old Curiosity Shop

Charles Dickens

Gentle Nell Trent lives a simple, if solitary life with her doting grandfather in his curiosity shop. Her parents died in poverty and unbeknownst to Nell her grandfather is obsessed with winning her an inheritance through...

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Oliver Twist

Oliver Twist

Charles Dickens

Oliver is an orphan living on the dangerous London streets with no one but himself to rely on. Fleeing from poverty and hardship, he falls in with a criminal street gang who will not let him go, however hard he tries to escape....

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Our Mutual Friend

Our Mutual Friend

Charles Dickens, Nick Hornby

John Harmon returns to England after years in exile to claim his inheritance: a great fortune and a beautiful young woman to whom he is betrothed, but has never met. When Harmon's body is pulled out of the Thames, all of London is...

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A Tale of Two Cities

A Tale of Two Cities

Charles Dickens

Lucie Manette has been separated from her father for eighteen years while he languished in Paris' most feared prison, the Bastille. Finally reunited, the Manettes' fortunes become inextricably intertwined with those of two men,...

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Crime and Punishment: A Novel in Six Parts with Epilogue

Crime and Punishment: A Novel in Six Parts with Epilogue

F. M. Dostoevsky, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Raskolnikov is desperate for money, but convinces himself that his motive for the murder is to benefit mankind.

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The Brothers Karamazov

The Brothers Karamazov

F. M. Dostoevsky, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Presents erotic rivalry in a series of triangular love affairs involving Karamazov and his three sons. This book portrays the social and spiritual strivings in Russian culture.

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Demons: A Novel in Three Parts

Demons: A Novel in Three Parts

F. M. Dostoevsky, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Based on a real-life crime which horrified Russia in 1869, this novel castigates the fanaticism of the country's revolutionaries, particularly those known as Nihilists. It presents a disturbing portrait of five young men saturated...

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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 Adventures and Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

The Adventures and Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, David Peace

Collects together Sherlock Holmes' intriguing cases, including adventures with mysterious masked strangers, ingenious heists, murderous plots and hidden jewels, which take the famous detective and his faithful sidekick Dr Watson...

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The Hound of the Baskervilles

The Hound of the Baskervilles

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

When Sir Charles Baskerville is found dead in the grounds, with a large animal footprint near his lifeless body, the locals are convinced that the hound is back. It is up to Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson to uncover the truth and...

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Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha

Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha

Roddy Doyle

Paddy Clarke is ten years old. Paddy Clarke lights fires. Paddy Clarke's name is written in wet cement all over Barrytown, north Dublin. Paddy Clarke's heroes are Father Damien (and the lepers), Geronimo and George Best. Paddy...

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The Count of Monte Cristo

The Count of Monte Cristo

Alexandre Dumas

Imprisoned for a crime he didn't commit, Edmond Dantes spends fourteen bitter years in a dungeon. When his daring escape plan works he uses all he has learnt during his incarceration to mastermind an elaborate plan of revenge that...

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Kings in Grass Castles

Kings in Grass Castles

Mary Durack

When Patrick Durack left Western Ireland for Australia in 1853, he was to found a pioneering dynasty and build a cattle empire across the great stretches of Australia. This title presents the Durack saga.

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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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The Mill on the Floss

The Mill on the Floss

George Eliot, Marina Lewycka

Maggie and Tom Tulliver are both willful, passionate children, and their relationship has always been tempestuous. As they grow up together on the banks of the River Floss, Tom's self-righteous stubbornness and Maggie's emotional...

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Silas Marner

Silas Marner

George Eliot

Silas Marner lives a friendless and isolated existence near the country village of Raveloe, hoarding his gold. One night his fortune is stolen and Silas loses everything he holds dear. But then the golden-haired child Eppie...

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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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As I Lay Dying

As I Lay Dying

William Faulkner

Successive episodes in the death and burial of Addie Bundren are recounted by various members of the family circle, principally as they are carting their mother's coffin to Jefferson, Mississippi, in order to bury her among her...

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Light in August

Light in August

William Faulkner

Joe Christmas - a man doomed, deracinated and alone - wanders the Deep South in search of an identity, and a place in society. After killing his perverted God-fearing lover, it becomes inevitable that he is pursued by a...

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The Good Soldier

The Good Soldier

Ford Madox Ford, Zoe Heller

John Dowell and his wife befriend Edward and Leonora Ashburnham they appear to be perfect couple. He is a distinguished soldier and she is beautiful and intelligent. However, what lies beneath the surface of their marriage is far...

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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

Set in Lyme Regis in 1867, 'The French Lieutenant's Woman' tells the story of a woman wronged, depicted against an unrelenting Victorian England.

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The Journals of John Fowles

The Journals of John Fowles

John Fowles

Charts the rewards and struggles of the author's literary career, and reveals the often reluctant celebrity behind the outward success. This volume marks a writer's continuing quest for wisdom and self-understanding. It provides...

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The Magus

The Magus

John Fowles

On a remote Greek Island, Nicholas Urfe finds himself embroiled in the deceptions of a master trickster. As reality and illusion intertwine, Urfe is caught up in the darkest of psychological games.

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Mantissa

Mantissa

John Fowles

Miles Green wakes up in a mysterious hospital with no idea of how he got there or who he is. He definitely doesn't remember his wife, or his children's names. An impossibly shapely specialist doctor tells him his memory...

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The Essentials of Psychoanalysis

The Essentials of Psychoanalysis

Sigmund Freud, Anna Freud

Covers the themes that Sigmund Freud explored in his work from the meaning of dreams and the concept of the unconscious, instinctual and sexual life to the structure of the personality. This collection is intended as a guide to...

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The Cranford Chronicles

The Cranford Chronicles

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

The arrival of handsome young Doctor Harrison causes yet further agitation not just because of his revolutionary methods but also because of his effect on the hearts of the ladies. Meanwhile Miss Matty Jenkyns nurses her own...

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North and South

North and South

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell, Jenny Uglow

Milton is a northern town centred around the cotton mills that employ most of its inhabitants. Arriving from a rural idyll, Margaret Hale is initially shocked by the social unrest and poverty she finds in her new hometown....

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Wives and Daughters

Wives and Daughters

Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

Molly Gibson is the spirited, loyal daughter of the local doctor. Their peaceful close-knit home is turned upside down when Molly's father decides to remarry. Whilst Molly struggles to adjust to her snobbish stepmother, she forms...

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The Wind in the Willows

The Wind in the Willows

Kenneth Grahame

The day that Mole abandons his spring-cleaning and sets out to enjoy the sunshine is the start of many adventures. Not only does he discover the river and the joys of messing around in boats, but he also makes lifelong friends...

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Nothing ,  Doting ,  Blindness

Nothing , Doting , Blindness

Henry Green, D. J. Taylor

Features three novels that span the author's career as a novelist and display his unique talents as a writer. This title includes his first novel, wherein a young man is blinded in a senseless accident but thereafter discovers new...

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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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Doctor Fischer of Geneva

Doctor 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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 Read reviewThe End of the Affair

The End of the Affair

Graham Greene, Monica Ali

The love affair between Maurice Bendix and Sarah, flourishing in the turbulent times of the London Blitz, ends when she suddenly and without explanation breaks it off. After a chance meeting rekindles his love and jealousy two...

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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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Our Man in Havana: An Introduction by Christopher Hitchens

Our Man in Havana: An Introduction by Christopher Hitchens

Graham Greene, Christopher Hitchens

Wormold is a vacuum cleaner salesman in a city of powercuts. His adolescent daughter spends his money with a skill that amazes him so when a mysterious Englishman offers him an extra income he's tempted. In return all he has to do...

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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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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

Features two stories that include The Third Man , which is a recreation of post-war Vienna, a 'smashed dreary city' occupied by the four Allied powers; and, The Fallen Idol , a story of a small boy caught up in the games that...

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See Under Love

See Under Love

David Grossman

Momik, the only child of two survivors, is brought up in Israel by a family seeking to ignore the past. No-one will explain to him what life was like 'Over There' or what the 'Nazi Beast' is. His 9-year-old mind imagines a Nazi...

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Life and Fate

Life and Fate

Vasilii Grossman

A novel that focuses on overshadowing the lives of a huge cast of Russian and German characters which looms the battle of Stalingrad.

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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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Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky

Twenty Thousand Streets Under the Sky

Patrick Hamilton, Michael Holroyd

The Midnight Bell, a pub on the Euston Road, is where barman, Bob, falls in love with Jenny, a West End prostitute who comes in off the streets for a gin and pep. Around his obsessions, and Ella the barmaid's secret love for him,...

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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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The Scarlet Letter

The Scarlet Letter

Nathaniel Hawthorne

Hester Prynne is a beautiful young woman. She is also an outcast. In the eyes of her neighbours she has committed an unforgivable sin. Everyone knows that her little daughter, Pearl, is the product of an illicit affair but no one...

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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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Death in the Afternoon

Death in the Afternoon

Ernest Hemingway

Shares the sights, the sounds, the excitement, and the knowledge which fuelled the authors passion for Spain and the bullfight. This book contains some of his finest writing, inspired by the intense life, as well as the inevitable...

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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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The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner

The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner

James Hogg

Robert is a difficult and disturbed young man. He comes from a troubled family background and turns to his Calvinist faith for solace but finds it hard to get along with other people, particularly his brother and his dissolute...

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Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age

Dancing Lessons for the Advanced in Age

Bohumil Hrabal

Saints and sinners, emperors and embezzlers, barmaids and balalaikas all play their part in the bawdy reminiscences of Hrabal's cobbler as he charms an audience of young beauties.

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Les Miserables

Les Miserables

Victor Hugo, Julie Rose, Adam Thirlwell

Peopled by colourful characters from the nineteenth-century Parisian underworld; the street children, the prostitutes and the criminals, this novel tells the story of an escaped convict Jean Valjean, and his efforts to reform his...

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Ape and Essence

Ape and Essence

Aldous Huxley

In February 2108, the New Zealand Rediscovery Expedition reaches California at last. It is over a century since the world was devastated by nuclear war, but the blight of radioactivity and disease still gnaws away at the...

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Brave New World

Brave New World

Aldous Huxley, Margaret Atwood

Far in the future, the World Controllers have created the ideal society. Through clever use of genetic engineering, brainwashing and recreational sex and drugs all its members are happy consumers. Bernard Marx seems alone...

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Brave New World Revisited

Brave New World Revisited

Aldous Huxley, David Bradshaw

Includes the author's views on overpopulation, propaganda, advertising and government control. This book appeals for the defence of relevant individualism.

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The 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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Island

Island

Aldous Huxley, David Bradshaw

For over a hundred years the Pacific island of Pala has been the scene of a unique experiment in civilisation. Its inhabitants live in a society where western science has been brought together with eastern philosophy and humanism...

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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 ,   The Jolly Corner

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

Ulysses

James Joyce

Set entirely on one day, 16 June 1904, this book follows Leopold Bloom and Stephen Daedalus as they go about their daily business in Dublin. After its first publication in Paris in 1922, it was published in Great Britain by The...

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The Metamorphosis

The Metamorphosis

Franz Kafka, Adam Thirlwell, Edwin Muir

One morning, Gregor Samsa wakes up to find himself transformed into a giant insect. His family is understandably perturbed and he finds himself an outsider in his own home. The author explores the confusing nature of human...

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The Complete Short Stories

The Complete Short Stories

Franz Kafka

A collection of all Kafka's shorter fiction, from fragments, parables and sketches, to longer, complete tales. Together, they reveal the breadth of Kafka's literary vision and the depth of his thought. Some, like The...

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The Trial

The Trial

Franz Kafka

Presents a terrifying tale of Joseph K, a respectable functionary in a bank, who is suddenly arrested and must defend his innocence against a charge about which he can get no information. This book is a vision of the excesses of...

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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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Three Cheers for the Paraclete

Three Cheers for the Paraclete

Tom Keneally

From the moment he allows his young cousin and bride to spend the night in his room, Father Maitland causes raised eyebrows and dark mutterings amongst the brothers at St Peter's.

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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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The Giants

The Giants

J. M. G. Le Clezio

Upon an immense stretch of flat ground at the mouth of a river bathed in sunlight rises Hyperpolis. It stands there, surrounded by its four asphalt car-parks, to condemn us - a huge enveloping supermarket. Each of us will see...

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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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In His Own Write

In His Own Write

John Lennon, Paul McCartney

A collection of John Lennon's stories, drawings and poems.

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The Monk

The Monk

Matthew Lewis

Noble and devout, Ambrosio is the abbot of a Spanish monastery and spends his days in prayer and preaching. However his monastery is harboring a malevolent force in the form of a young monk called Rosario. Rosario attaches himself...

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The Prince

The Prince

Niccolo Machiavelli, Peter Constantine

Machiavelli made his name notorious for centuries with the Prince, his clever and cynical work about power relationships. The key themes of this influential, and ever timely, writer are that adaptability is the key to success and...

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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 Monarch of the Glen

The Monarch of the Glen

Sir Compton Mackenzie

Chester Royde, an American millionaire, travels to Scotland with his new bride Carrie and sister Myrtle, to find out more about Carrie's Scottish ancestry. Their new 'relatives' turn out to be a little more authentically Scottish...

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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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More Far Eastern Tales

More Far Eastern Tales

W. Somerset Maugham

From the love affair between a missionary and a drunkard to the mystery surrounding a death at sea, this collection gives a warm and humourous insight into life and history of life in the colonies.

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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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The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

Mark Twain

Impish, daring young Tom Sawyer is the bane of the old, the hero of the young. During one hot summer, Tom witnesses a murder, runs away to be a pirate, attends his own funeral, searches for treasure in a haunted house, foils a...

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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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General of the Dead Army

General of the Dead Army

Ismail Kadare, Derek Coltman, David Smiley

Twenty years after the end of the Second World War, an Italian general is despatched to Albania to recover his country's dead. Once there he meets a German general who is engaged upon an identical mission, and their conversations...

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Darkness at Noon

Darkness at Noon

Arthur Koestler

N S Rubashov, an old guard Communist, falls victim to an unnamed government. This novel traces his story through arrest, imprisonment and trail.

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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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The Vagrant Mood: Six Essays

The Vagrant Mood: Six Essays

W. Somerset Maugham

From Kant to Raymond Chandler; from the legend of Zurbaran to the art of the detective story; and, from Burke to Augustus Hare, this collection of essays explores the genre of literary criticism.

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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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Far Eastern Tales

Far Eastern Tales

W. Somerset Maugham

A collection of short stories born of the author's experiences in Malaya, Singapore and other outposts of the former British Empire.

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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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W B Yeats - Collected Poems

W B Yeats - Collected Poems

W. B. Yeats, Augustine Martin

W B Yeats' life spanned the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, and his poetry reflects all the turmoil, fervour, traditions and revolutions of that period. This collection shows the impact of a great poet whose...

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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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Weekend Wodehouse

Weekend Wodehouse

P. G. Wodehouse, Hilaire Belloc

Includes Drones Club stories, Mr Mullinger stories, and stories of Jeeves, Lord Amsworth and Ukridge.

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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 Murders in the Rue Morgue

The Murders in the Rue Morgue

Edgar Allan Poe, Matthew Pearl

Includes stories of a young eccentric named C Auguste Dupin: 'The Murders in the Rue Morgue', 'The Mystery of Marie Roget' and 'The Purloined Letter'.

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The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Stories

The Fall of the House of Usher and Other Stories

Edgar Allan Poe

Features a collection of the author's short stories and novellas that includes tales such as 'The Pit and the Pendulum' and 'The Tell-Tale Heart'.

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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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The Foundation Pit

The Foundation Pit

Andrey Platonov, Robert Chandler, Elizabeth Chandler, Olga Meerson

Describes the lives of a group of Soviet workers who believe they are laying the foundations for a radiant future.

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Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values

Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance: An Inquiry into Values

Robert Pirsig

Tells a story of the narrator, his son Chris and their month-long motorcycle odyssey from Minnesota to California profoundly affected an entire generation.

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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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Sonnets

Sonnets

William Shakespeare, Germaine Greer

Shakespeare's sonnets are lyrical, haunting, beautiful and often breath-taking, representing one of the finest bodies of poetry ever penned. They demonstrate the writer's skill in capturing the full range of human emotions within...

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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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Anna Karenina

Anna Karenina

Leo Tolstoy, Louise Shanks Maude, Aylmer Maude

Set against the backdrop of Russian high society, this novel charts the course of the doomed love affair between Anna, a beautiful married woman, and Count Vronsky, a wealthy army officer who pursues Anna after becoming infatuated...

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Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

William Makepeace Thackeray

Becky Sharp is a poor orphan when she first makes friends with the lovely Amelia Sedley at Miss Pinkerton's Academy for Young Ladies. She may not have the natural advantages of her companion but she more than makes up for it with...

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Kidnapped

Kidnapped

Robert Louis Stevenson

When young David Balfour is orphaned he discovers some surprising truths about his family. His meeting with his uncle Ebenezer turns out to have disastrous consequences leading to kidnap and imprisonment on board a ship bound for...

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One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, H.T. Willetts

The Gulag, the Stalinist labour camps to which millions of Russians were condemned for political deviation, has become a household word in the West. This title tells the story of one typical day in a labour camp as experienced by...

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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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Touching the Void

Touching the Void

Joe Simpson

Presents an account of the author and Simon's (author's climbing partner) terrifying adventure in the Peruvian Andes. This book shows how the pair dealt with the psychological traumas. It not only tells the story of their survival...

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Revolutionary Road

Revolutionary Road

Richard Yates

Presents 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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Suite Francaise

Suite Francaise

Irene Nemirovsky, Sandra Smith

In June 1940 France fell to the Nazis. This novel explores the effects of this momentous event on the lives of ordinary Parisians and the inhabitants of a small rural community under occupation. It conjures up a cast of characters...

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Sophie's Choice

Sophie’s Choice

William Styron

Stingo, an inexperienced 22 year old Southerner, takes us back to the summer of 1947 and a boarding house in a leafy Brooklyn suburb. There, he meets Nathan, a fiery Jewish intellectual; and Sophie, a beautiful and fragile Polish...

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V

V

Thomas Pynchon

The quest for V. sweeps us through sixty years and a panorama of Alexandria, Paris, Malta, Florence, Africa and New York. But who, where or what is V.?

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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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The File on H

The File on H

Ismail Kadare, David Bellos

Two Irish-American scholars from Harvard journey to Albania in the 1930s with a tape recorder in order to record the last genuinely oral epic singers. Their purpose, they say, is to show how Homer's epics might have been culled...

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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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Under the Net

Under the Net

Iris Murdoch, Kiernan Ryan

Jake Donaghue is a drifting, clever, likeable young man who makes a living out of translation work and sponging on his friends. A meeting with Anna, an old flame, leads him into a series of fantastic adventures. Jake is captivated...

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War and Peace

War and Peace

Leo Tolstoy, Richard Pevear, Larissa Volokhonsky

Depicts Russia's war with Napoleon and its effects on the lives of those caught up in the conflict. This book follows the rise and fall of families in St Petersburg and Moscow who are linked by their personal and political...

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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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In Search of Lost Time: The Guermantes Way

In Search of Lost Time: The Guermantes Way

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

Recalling his initiation into the dazzling world of Parisian high society and looking back over his time in the glamorous salons of the aristocracy, the narrator satirises this shallow world and his own youthful infatuation with...

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Year Of Living Dangerously

Year Of Living Dangerously

Christopher Koch

The charismatic god-king Sukarno has brought Indonesia to the edge of chaos - to an abortive revolution that will leave half a million dead. For the Western correspondents here, this gathering apocalypse is their story and their...

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In Search of Lost Time

In Search of Lost Time

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

Travelling from Paris to the sunny seaside town of Balbec, the narrator meets an intriguing set of acquaintances who provide him with both friendship and entertainment. Most significantly, he meets a dark-haired girl with...

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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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Magnificent Meaulnes (Le Grand Meaulnes)

Magnificent Meaulnes (Le Grand Meaulnes)

Henri Alain-Fournier, Valerie Lester

When Augustin Meaulnes arrives in Francois' home, it changes everything. On one of his escapades, Meaulnes gets lots in the countryside and finds himself at a party where he meets the girl of his dreams. He is haunted by her...

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Kim

Kim

Rudyard Kipling

Kim is an orphan who earns his living begging on the streets of Lahore. One day he befriends an aged Tibetan Lama who, although content to live simply in India, is a rich and powerful abbot in his own country. When the Lama...

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The Jungle Books

The Jungle Books

Rudyard Kipling

Mowgli is rescued as a baby from the jaws of the evil tiger, Shere Khan. Raised by wolves and guided by Baloo the bear, Mowgli and his animal friends embark on a series of hair-raising adventures through the jungles of India.

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I Served the King of England: Featuring an Introduction by Adam Thirlwell

I Served the King of England: Featuring an Introduction by Adam Thirlwell

Bohumil Hrabal, Adam Thirlwell

Ditie is a hotel waiter who rises to become a millionaire and then loses it all again against the backdrop of events in Prague from the German invasion to the victory of Communism.

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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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The Voyage Out

The Voyage Out

Virginia Woolf, Frances Spalding, Erica Wagner

A party of English people board the Euphrosyne bound for South America. Among them is Rachel Vinrace, young, innocent and wholly ignorant of the world of politics and society. She is a free spirit, half-caught, momentarily and...

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The Black Prince

The Black Prince

Iris Murdoch, Candia McWilliam

Bradley Pearson, narrator and hero, is an elderly writer with a 'block'. Finding himself surrounded by predatory friends and relations - his ex-wife, her delinquent brother, a younger, deplorably successful writer, Arnold Baffin,...

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Sartre: Romantic Rationalist

Sartre: Romantic Rationalist

Iris Murdoch

A that study analyses and evaluates the different strands of Sartre's rich and complex work. Combining the objectivity of the scholar with an interest in contemporary problems, this title discusses the tradition of philosophical,...

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Catalina

Catalina

W. Somerset Maugham

Catalina is the one person unable to join in the festivities of the Feast of the Assumption. But then she has a vision of the Virgin, and is miraculously cured. In the dark days of the Spanish Inquisition, such a claim to...

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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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Independent People

Independent People

Halldor Laxness

Bjartus is a sheep farmer determined to eke a living from a blighted patch of land. Nothing, not merciless weather, nor his family will come between him and his goal of financial independence. Only Asta Solillja, the child he...

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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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Cry, the Beloved Country

Cry, the Beloved Country

Alan Paton

Tells the story of the Zulu pastor Stephen Kumalo and his son Absalom, set against the background of a land and a people riven by racial injustice. This work talks about love and hope, courage and endurance, born of the dignity of...

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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 History of Tom Jones: and The Female Husband

The History of Tom Jones: and The Female Husband

Henry Fielding

Tom Jones, born a foundling, he romps through the English countryside getting himself into all kinds of trouble. Betrayed by jealous relatives, Tom Jones is exiled from home and must undergo a variety of trials and adventures in...

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The Age of Innocence

The Age of Innocence

Edith Wharton, Lionel Shriver

Newland Archer and May Welland are the perfect couple. He is a wealthy young lawyer and she is a lovely and sweet-natured girl. All seems set for success until the arrival of May's unconventional cousin Ellen Olenska, who returns...

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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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Beloved

Beloved

Toni Morrison

Terrible, unspeakable things happened to Sethe at Sweet Home, the farm where she lived as a slave for 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 new...

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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 title explores passionate family relationships where there is no love, only self-centredness. It is about lovelessness - 'only an...

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Temple of the Golden Pavillion

Temple of the Golden Pavillion

Yukio Mishima

Because of the boyhood trauma of seeing his mother make love to another man in the presence of his dying father, Mizoguchi becomes a hopeless stutterer. Taunted by his schoolmates, he feels utterly alone untill he becomes an...

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We: Introduction by Will Self

We: Introduction by Will Self

Yevgeny Zamyatin, Will Self, Natasha Randall

The citizens of the One State live in a condition of 'mathematically infallible happiness'. D-503 keeps a diary of his days working for the collective good in this city state where nature, privacy and individual liberty have been...

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A Writer's Notebook

A Writer’s Notebook

W. Somerset Maugham

Part autobiographical, part confessional, this title contains Somerset Maugham's observations, confidences, experiments and jottings, from 1892, when he was eighteen, until 1949.

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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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The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Mark Twain

Huck is a young, naive white boy fleeing from his drunken, dangerous Pa and Jim is a runaway slave longing to be reunited with his family. Flung together by circumstance, they journey down the Mississippi together on a log raft,...

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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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In Search of Lost Time: The Captive & The Fugitive

In Search of Lost Time: The Captive & The Fugitive

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

Far from an idyllic state of affairs, the narrator is living in his mother's apartment in Paris with his lover, Albertine. His obsessive love for her means that their relationship is shadowed by jealousy and headed for tragedy.

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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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Appointment in Samarra

Appointment in Samarra

John O'Hara

Julian English is part of the social elite of his 1930s American hometown but from the moment he impetuously throws a cocktail in the face of one of his powerful business associates his life begins to spiral out of control -...

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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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1915: A Novel of Gallipoli

1915: A Novel of Gallipoli

Roger McDonald

The tragedy and violence of Gallipoli provide the climax to this very personal, moving and surprisingly romantic story. This astonishing first novel, published to great critical acclaim in 1979, tells the story of two boys from...

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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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Beyond the Black Stump

Beyond the Black Stump

Nevil Shute

Stanton Laird is sent from his town in America to work in a remote outpost in Western Australia. While out there he befriends Regan family and falls in love with the daughter Mollie. However, when Mollie travels to America to...

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The Chequer Board

The Chequer Board

Nevil Shute

John Turner, a young man with a checkered past, has been told he has just one year to live. He decides to use his time in search of three very different men he met briefly during the war: a snobbish British pilot, a young corporal...

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The Far Country

The Far Country

Nevil Shute

A young English woman leaves her aging parents to visit friends living in the Australian outback. She falls in love, both with the country and with Carl, a doctor and Czech refugee. Brought together through dramatic encounters and...

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In the Wet

In the Wet

Nevil Shute

It is the rainy season. Drunk and delirious, an old man lies dying in the Queensland bush. In his opium-hazed last hours, a priest finds his deserted shack and listens to his last words. Half-awake and half-dreaming the old man...

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Landfall

Landfall

Nevil Shute

Jerry Chambers, a fresh-faced young pilot, mistakenly sinks a British submarine. He is reprimanded and sent to a remote posting to test an experimental new bomb, a dangerous mission far away from the girl he loves. While Jerry...

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Lonely Road

Lonely Road

Nevil Shute

A rich middle-aged man finds his lonely life turned upside down when he falls in love with a pretty dance hostess and becomes involved in exposing a conspiracy to sabotage the British General Election. But his dogged pursuit of...

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Marazan

Marazan

Nevil Shute

After Philip Stenning is involved in a near-fatal plane crash, he feels he owes a debt of gratitude to the man who rescued him. However, his mysterious savior is an escaped convict, and his determination to help him leads Stenning...

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Most Secret

Most Secret

Nevil Shute

In their trusty fishing boat Genevieve, armed with a flame thrower and limited ammunition, a small group of officers and men take a stand against the might of the German army after the fall of France in World War II. This title...

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An Old Captivity

An Old Captivity

Nevil Shute

Young pilot Donald Ross has little in common with the Oxford don who has employed him on an expedition to the Arctic - and still less with his beautiful but stubborn daughter, Alix. But once the three of them reach the treacherous...

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Pastoral

Pastoral

Nevil Shute

During the Second World War, Peter Marshall's crew become one of the most successful bombing teams in their Oxfordshire airbase. However, when Peter falls in love with a young WAAF officer, his concentration begins to suffer and...

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The Rainbow and the Rose

The Rainbow and the Rose

Nevil Shute

When Johnny Pascoe attempts to rescue a sick girl from the Tasmanian outback his plane crashes leaving him dangerously injured. Ronnie Clarke, who was trained by Pascoe, endeavours to fly a doctor in to help but this proves more...

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Ruined City

Ruined City

Nevil Shute

Through a series of mishaps, Henry Warren, a recently divorced City financier, ends up in hospital in a Northern town ruined by the closure of its shipyard. Moved by the fate of the town's inhabitants, Warren risks his fortune and...

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Slide Rule

Slide Rule

Nevil Shute

Nevil Shute was a power and a pioneer in the world of flying long before he began to write the stories that made him a bestselling novelist. This autobiography charts Shute's path from childhood to his career as a gifted...

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So Disdained

So Disdained

Nevil Shute

When Peter Moran picks up a man on the roadside while driving through a bitter rainy night on the South Downs, he embarks upon an adventure that will lead him into treasonous international plots, flying adventures and tests of...

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Stephen Morris

Stephen Morris

Nevil Shute

Stephen Morris has just called off his engagement to the girl of his dreams because he is a penniless graduate with no prospects. He finds a job working as an aircraft mechanic, hoping to make his fortune.

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What Happened to the Corbetts

What Happened to the Corbetts

Nevil Shute

A novel that describes the devastation resulting from an aerial bomb attack in Southampton which destroys the city's infrastructure and leaves the inhabitants at the mercy of cholera and further assaults. It follows the trials and...

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Olivia

Olivia

Dorothy Strachey

When Olivia turns sixteen she is sent to a Parisian finishing school to broaden her education. Soon after her arrival, she finds herself falling under the spell of her beautiful and charismatic teacher. But Madamoiselle Julie's...

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Timequake

Timequake

Kurt Vonnegut

Addresses memory, suicide, the Great Depression, the loss of American eloquence, and the obsolescent thrill of reading books.

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The Aerodrome: A Love Story

The Aerodrome: A Love Story

Rex Warner, Michael Moorcock

Roy, coming of age in the messy, violent and adulterous world of the villagers, is simultaneously attracted and repelled by the aerodrome standing on a hill and by the powerful figure of the Air Vice-Marshal. Soon he has to leave...

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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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Room Of One's Own And Three Guineas

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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Don Fernando

Don Fernando

W. Somerset Maugham

Discusses the writings of St. Teresa and the paintings of El Greco, and comments with sagacity and wit on such illustrious figures as Cervantes, Velazquez and the creator of Don Juan. This title is full of happy surprises, curious...

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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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Black Boy: A Record of Youth and Childhood

Black Boy: A Record of Youth and Childhood

Richard Wright

At four years of age, Richard Wright set fire to his home; at five his father deserted the family; by six Richard was - temporarily - an alcoholic. It was in saloons, railroad yards and streets that he learned the facts about life...

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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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The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea

The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea

Yukio Mishima

A band of savage 13-year-old boys reject the adult world as hypocritical and sentimental, and train themselves in a brutal callousness. When the mother of one of them begins an affair with a ship's officer, he and his friends...

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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

A lawyer's advice to his children as he defends a black man charged with attacking a white girl. This book explores the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South. It creates one of the heroes of...

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The Odyssey: Translated by Robert Fitzgerald

The Odyssey: Translated by Robert Fitzgerald

Homer, Robert Fitzgerald

Penelope has been waiting for her husband Odysseus to return from Troy for many years. Little does she know that his path back to her has been blocked by astonishing and terrifying trials. Will he overcome the hideous monsters,...

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Sense and Sensibility

Sense and Sensibility

Jane Austen

Elinor is as prudent as her sister Marianne is impetuous. Each must learn from the other after they are they are forced by their father's death to leave their home and enter into the contests of polite society. The charms of...

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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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The Rape of the Lock

The Rape of the Lock

Alexander Pope, Sophie Gee, Aubrey Beardsley

A hideous crime is committed at a fashionable London society gathering. The victim is the beautiful, innocent Belinda, her attacker is the dastardly Baron, and his weapon of choice is a pair of scissors...Pope's mock-epic is the...

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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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Thirst for Love

Thirst for Love

Yukio Mishima

After the early death of her philandering husband, Etsuko moves into her father-in-law's house, where she numbly submits to the old man's advances. But soon she finds herself in love with the young servant Saburo. Tormented by his...

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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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The Gospel According to Jesus Christ

The Gospel According to Jesus Christ

Jose Saramago, Giovanni Pontiero

A retelling of the Gospel following the life of Christ from his conception to his crucifixion. A naive Jesus is the son not of God, but of Joseph. In the desert it is not Satan, but God that Christ tussles with, an autocrat with...

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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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All Quiet on the Western Front

All Quiet on the Western Front

Erich Maria Remarque, Brian O. Murdoch

In 1914, a room full of German schoolboys, fresh-faced and idealistic, are goaded by their schoolmaster to troop off to the 'glorious war'. With the fire and patriotism of youth, they sign up. What follows is the story of a young...

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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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