Narrator

Simon Vance

Simon Vance
  • The fascinating story of how an eccentric group of intelligence agents used amateur diplomacy to penetrate the Nazi high command in an effort to prevent the start of World War II

    How might the British have handled Hitler differently?” remains one of history’s greatest “what ifs."

    Coffee with Hitler tells the astounding story of how a handful of amateur British intelligence agents wined, dined, and befriended the leading National Socialists between the wars. With support from royalty, aristocracy, politicians, and businessmen, they hoped to use the recently founded Anglo-German Fellowship as a vehicle to civilize and enlighten the Nazis.

    At the heart of the story are a pacifist Welsh historian, a World War I flying ace, and a butterfly-collecting businessman, who together offered the British government better intelligence on the horrifying rise of the Nazis than any other agents. Though they were only minor players in the terrible drama of Europe’s descent into its second twentieth-century war, these three protagonists operated within the British Establishment. They infiltrated the Nazi high command deeper than any other spies, relaying accurate intelligence to both their government and to its anti-appeasing critics.

    Straddling the porous border between hard and soft diplomacy, their activities fueled tensions between the amateur and the professional diplomats in both London and Berlin. Having established a personal rapport with President Franklin D. Roosevelt, they delivered intelligence to him directly, too, paving the way for American military support for Great Britain against the Nazi threat.

    The settings for their public efforts ranged from tea parties in Downing Street, banquets at London’s best hotels, and the Coronation of George VI to coffee and cake at Hitler’s Bavarian mountain home, champagne galas at the Berlin Olympics, and afternoon receptions at the Nuremberg Rallies. More private encounters between the elites of both powers were nurtured by shooting weekends at English country homes, whisky-drinking sessions at German estates, discreet meetings in London apartments, and whispered exchanges in the corridors of embassies and foreign ministries.

  • During World War II, an American soldier encounters a German woman living a secret life in bomb-blighted London.

    In September of 1940, during the Blitz in London, Audrey Stocking is blending in with other civilians who are trying to survive the nightly bombings, but she has a secret. She’s not British; she’s German. Her fake passport and nearly perfect English allow her to blend in as she works hard to help evacuate British children into the countryside. Audrey longs to reunite with her family in Hamburg, but her double life, the bombings, and the watchful British Military Intelligence have forced her to stay put. And then there are the paralyzing nightmares …

    Lieutenant Wesley Bowers, an American soldier training with London’s Bomb Disposal Company 5, meets Audrey when an air raid leaves an unexploded bomb on the floor of her flat. She is attractive, intelligent, and compassionate, and there’s an immediate connection between them. As they get to know each other, Wesley realizes Audrey is the one bright spot amid the war’s unending bleakness and constant threat of death. But will he still feel the same if he discovers the secrets she is hiding? Secrets even Audrey is unaware of?

    In Times of Rain and War is a gripping and heartbreakingly beautiful story about the strength and resilience of the human heart and spirit, reminding us there is always hope in hard times.

  • Every sidekick has a story.

    When a book-loving goblin breaks the rules, he inadvertently becomes the sidekick to a heroic young prince. As they set out to save their kingdom from an evil sorcerer and his minions, no one can be trusted, neither human nor goblin, and the world as they know it will never be the same.

    The Prince and the Goblin is a chapter book in which a goblin who loves to read just may save the world.

  • A darkly luminous new anthology collecting the most terrifying horror stories by renowned female authors, presenting anew these forgotten classics to the modern reader

    Readers are well aware that Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein; few know how many other tales of terror she created. In addition to Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Harriet Beecher Stowe wrote some surprisingly effective horror stories. The year after Little Women appeared, Louisa May Alcott published one of the first mummy tales. These ladies weren’t alone. From the earliest days of gothic and horror fiction, women were exploring the frontiers of fear, dreaming dark dreams that will still keep you up at night.

    More Deadly than the Male includes unexpected horror tales by Louisa May Alcott and Harriet Beecher Stowe, and forgotten writers like Mary Cholmondely and Charlotte Riddell, whose work deserves a modern audience. Listeners will be drawn in by the familiar names and intrigued by their rare stories.

    In The Beckside Boggle, Alice Rea brings a common piece of English folklore to hair-raising life, while Helene Blavatsky, best known as the founder of the spiritualist Theosophical Society, conjures up a solid and satisfying ghost story in The Cave of the Echoes. Edith Wharton’s great novel The Age of Innocence won her the Pulitzer prize, yet her horror stories are known only to a comparative few.

    Listeners will discover lost and forgotten women who wrote horror every bit as effectively as their male contemporaries. They will learn about their lives and careers, the challenges they faced as women working in a male-dominated field, the way they overcame those challenges, and the way they approached the genre―which was often subtler, more psychological, and more disturbing.

  • The revered author’s definitive collection of short fiction, which explores enduring spiritual and science fiction themes such as space, time, reality, fantasy, God, and the fate of humankind.

    From C.S. Lewis—the great British writer, scholar, lay theologian, broadcaster, Christian apologist, and author of Mere Christianity, The Screwtape Letters, The Great Divorce, The Chronicles of Narnia, and many other beloved classics—comes a collection of his dazzling short fiction.

    This collection of futuristic fiction includes a breathtaking science fiction story written early in his career in which Cambridge intellectuals witness the breach of space-time through a chronoscope—a telescope that looks not just into another world, but into another time.

    As powerful, inventive, and profound as his theological and philosophical works, The Dark Tower reveals another side of Lewis’s creative mind and his longtime fascination with reality and spirituality. It is ideal reading for fans of J. R. R. Tolkien, Lewis’s longtime friend and colleague.

  • From acclaimed author and ardent bibliophile Stuart Kells comes an exploration of the quest to find the personal library of the world’s greatest writer.

    Millions of words of scholarship have been expended on the world’s most famous author and his work. And yet a critical part of the puzzle, Shakespeare’s library, is a mystery. For four centuries people have searched for it: in mansions, palaces, and libraries; in riverbeds, sheep pens, and partridge coops; and in the corridors of the mind. Yet no trace of the Bard’s manuscripts, books, or letters has ever been found.

    The search for Shakespeare’s library is much more than a treasure hunt. Knowing what the Bard read informs our reading of his work, and it offers insight into the mythos of Shakespeare and the debate around authorship. The library’s fate has profound implications for literature, for national and cultural identity, and for the global Shakespeare industry. It bears on fundamental principles of art, identity, history, meaning, and truth.

    Unfolding the search like the mystery story that it is, acclaimed author Stuart Kells follows the trail of the hunters, taking us through different conceptions of the library and of the man himself. Entertaining and enlightening, Shakespeare’s Library is a captivating exploration of one of literature’s most enduring enigmas.

  • “The North” is simultaneously a location, a direction, and a mystical concept. Although this concept has ancient roots in mythology, folklore, and fairy tales, it continues to resonate today within modern culture. McIntosh leads listeners, chapter by chapter, through the magical and spiritual history of the North, as well as its modern manifestations, as documented through physical records, such as runestones and megaliths, but also through mythology and lore.

    This mythic conception of a unique, powerful, and mysterious Northern civilization was known to the Greeks as “Hyberborea”—the “Land Beyond the North Wind”—which they considered to be the true origin place of their god, Apollo, bringer of civilization. Through the Greeks, this concept of the mythic North would spread throughout Western civilization.

    In addition, McIntosh discusses Russian Hyperboreanism, which he describes as among “the most influential of the new religions and quasi-religious movements that have sprung up in Russia since the fall of Communism” and which is currently almost unknown in the West.

  • Prize-winning biographer Leo Damrosch tells the story of “the Club,” a group of extraordinary writers, artists, and thinkers who gathered weekly at a London tavern

    In 1763, the painter Joshua Reynolds proposed to his friend Samuel Johnson that they invite a few friends to join them every Friday at the Turk’s Head Tavern in London to dine, drink, and talk until midnight. Eventually the group came to include among its members Edmund Burke, Adam Smith, Edward Gibbon, and James Boswell. It was known simply as “the Club.”

    In this captivating book, Leo Damrosch brings alive a brilliant, competitive, and eccentric cast of characters. With the friendship of the “odd couple” Samuel Johnson and James Boswell at the heart of his narrative, Damrosch conjures up the precarious, exciting, and often brutal world of late eighteenth-century Britain. This is the story of an extraordinary group of people whose ideas helped to shape their age—and our own.

  • The Club is a blistering, timely, and gripping novel set at Cambridge University, centering around an all-male dining club for the most privileged and wealthy young men at Cambridge and following an outsider who exposes the dark secrets of this group, the Pitt Club.

    As a boy, Hans Stichler enjoys a fable-like childhood among the rolling hills and forests of North Germany, living an idyll that seems uninterruptable. A visit from Hans’ ailing English aunt Alex, who comes to stay for an entire summer, has a profound effect on the young Hans, all the more so when she invites him to come to university at Cambridge, where she teaches art history. Alex will ensure his application to St. John’s College is accepted, but in return he must help her investigate an elite university club of young aristocrats and wealthy social climbers, the Pitt Club. The club has existed at Cambridge for centuries, its long legacy of tradition and privilege largely unquestioned. As Hans makes his best efforts to prove club material and infiltrate its ranks, including testing his mettle in the boxing ring, he is drawn into a world of extravagance, debauchery, and macho solidarity. And when he falls in love with fellow student Charlotte, he sees a potential new life of upper-class sophistication opening up to him. But there are secrets in the club’s history, as well as in its present―and Hans soon finds himself in the inner sanctum of what proves to be an increasingly dangerous institution, forced to grapple with the notion that sometimes one must do wrong to do right.

  • The Knight of Maison Rouge is the story of what happens when two people from opposite political camps fall in love during Robespierre’s reign of terror.

    Paris, 1793. Lieutenant Maurice Lindey is an ardent young republican who hates tyranny and injustice whether they come from the left or right. But such even-handedness is a liability at a time when addressing someone as “monsieur” instead of “citizen” can bring one to the guillotine. Maurice makes daily visits to his love, Geneviève Dixmer, who lives in a quarter known as the hiding place of the Chevalier of Maison Rouge, a daring counterrevolutionary with notorious plans to free Marie Antoinette, who languishes in prison awaiting trial and inevitable execution. Soon Lindey is drawn in to the plot by the queen’s champion.

  • A collection of eighteen crime stories with a diverse range of characters and scenarios, from guilt-ridden fraudsters to lovesick murderers.

  • See Napoleon, a major motion picture from director Ridley Scott starring Joaquin Phoenix and Vanessa Kirby.

    Written with great energy and authority―and using the newly available personal archives of Napoleon himself―the first volume of a majestic two-part biography of the great French emperor and conqueror

    All previous lives of Napoleon have relied more on the memoirs of others than on his own uncensored words. This is the first life of Napoleon, in any language, that makes full use of his newly released personal correspondence compiled by the Napoléon Foundation in Paris.

    Michael Broers’ biography draws on the thoughts of Napoleon himself as his incomparable life unfolded. It reveals a man of intense emotion, but also of iron self-discipline; of acute intelligence and immeasurable energy. Tracing his life from its dangerous Corsican roots, through his rejection of his early identity, and the dangerous military encounters of his early career, it tells the story of the sheer determination, ruthlessness, and careful calculation that won him the precarious mastery of Europe by 1807. After the epic battles of Austerlitz, Jena, and Friedland, France was the dominant land power on the continent.

    Here is the first biography of Napoleon in which this brilliant, violent leader is evoked to give the listener a full, dramatic, and all-encompassing portrait.

  • V. S. Naipaul’s legendary command of broad comedy and acute social observation is on abundant display in these classic works of fiction—two novels and a collection of stories—that capture the rhythms of life in the Caribbean and England with impressive subtlety and humor.

    The Suffrage of Elvira is Naipaul’s hilarious take on an electoral campaign in the back country of Trinidad, where the candidates’ tactics include blatant vote-buying and supernatural sabotage. The eponymous protagonist of Mr. Stone and the Knights Companion is an aging Englishman of ponderously regular habits whose life is thrown into upheaval by a sudden marriage and unanticipated professional advancement. And the stories in A Flag on the Island take us from a Chinese bakery in Trinidad—whose black proprietor faces bankruptcy until he takes a Chinese name—to a rooming house in London—where the genteel landlady plays a nasty Darwinian game with her budgerigars.

    Unfailingly stylish, filled with intelligence and feeling, here is the work of a writer who can do just about anything that can be done with language.

  • In a sensational follow-up to Echoes of Sherlock Holmes and In the Company of Sherlock Holmes, a brand-new anthology of stories inspired by the Arthur Conan Doyle canon

    For the Sake of the Game is the latest volume in the award-winning series from New York Times bestselling editors Laurie R. King and Leslie S. Klinger, with stories of Sherlock Holmes, Dr. Watson, and friends in a variety of eras and forms. King and Klinger have a simple formula: ask some of the world’s greatest writers―regardless of genre―to be inspired by the stories of Arthur Conan Doyle.

    The results are surprising and joyous. Some tales are pastiches, featuring the recognizable figures of Holmes and Watson; others step away in time or place to describe characters and stories influenced by the Holmes world. Some of the authors spin whimsical tales of fancy; others tell hardcore thrillers or puzzling mysteries. One beloved author writes a song; two others craft a melancholy tale of insectoid analysis.

    This is not a volume for listeners who crave a steady diet of stories about Holmes and Watson on Baker Street. Rather, it is for the generations of people who were themselves inspired by the classic tales, and who are prepared to let their imaginations roam freely.

    Features stories by Peter S. Beagle, Rhys Bowen, Reed Farrel Coleman, Jamie Freveletti, Alan Gordon, Gregg Hurwitz, Toni L. P. Kelner, William Kotzwinkle and Joe Servello, Harley Jane Kozak, D. P. Lyle, Weston Ochse, Zoe Sharp, Duane Swierczynski, and F. Paul Wilson

  • James Hook is a child who only wants to grow up.

    When he meets Peter Pan, a boy who loves to pretend and is intent on never becoming a man, James decides he could try being a child—at least briefly. James joins Peter Pan on a holiday to Neverland, a place of adventure created by children’s dreams, but Neverland is not for the faint of heart. Soon James finds himself longing for home, determined that he is destined to be a man. But Peter refuses to take him back, leaving James trapped in a world just beyond the one he loves. A world where children are to never grow up.

    But grow up he does.

    And thus begins the epic adventure of a Lost Boy and a pirate.

    This story isn’t about Peter Pan; it’s about the boy whose life he stole. It’s about a man in a world that hates men. It’s about the feared Captain James Hook and his passionate quest to kill the Pan, an impossible feat in a magical land where everyone loves Peter Pan.

    Except one.

  • In a vastly innovative novel, Nobel Prize winner V. S. Naipaul intertwines memory and history to create what is at once an autobiography and an ambitious fictional archaeology of colonialism.

    Spanning continents and centuries and defying literary categories, A Way in the World tells intersecting stories whose protagonists include the disgraced and half-demented Sir Walter Raleigh who seeks El Dorado in the New World; the nineteenth-century insurgent Francisco Miranda, who becomes entangled in his own fantasies and borrowed ideas; and the doomed Blair, a present-day Caribbean revolutionary stranded in East Africa. Among these presences is a narrator who bears a telling resemblance to Naipaul himself: a Trinidadian writer of Indian ancestry and English residence boldly trying to come to terms with the mystery and transience that is his inheritance.

  • Returning us to the extraordinary territory of Jon McGregor’s Man Booker Prize long-listed novel Reservoir 13, The Reservoir Tapes take us deep into the heart of an English village that is trying to come to terms with what has happened on its watch.

    A teenage girl has gone missing. The whole community has been called upon to join the search. And now an interviewer arrives, intent on capturing the community’s unstable stories about life in the weeks and months before Becky Shaw vanished.

    Each villager has a memory to share or a secret to conceal, a connection to Becky that they are trying to make or break. A young wife pushes against the boundaries of her marriage, and another seeks a means of surviving within hers. A group of teenagers dare one another to jump into a flooded quarry, the one weak swimmer still awaiting his turn. A laborer lies trapped under rocks and dry limestone dust as his fellow workers attempt a risky rescue. And meanwhile a fractured portrait of Becky emerges at the edges of our vision―a girl swimming, climbing, and smearing dirt onto a scared boy’s face, images to be cherished and challenged as the search for her goes on.

  • The story of a writer’s singular journey—from one place to another, from the British colony of Trinidad to the ancient countryside of England, and from one state of mind to another—this is perhaps Naipaul’s most autobiographical work. Yet it is also woven through with remarkable invention to make it a rich and complex novel.

  • No writer has rendered our boundaryless, postcolonial world more acutely or prophetically than V. S. Naipaul, or given its upheavals such a hauntingly human face. A perfect case in point is this riveting novel, a masterful and stylishly rendered narrative of emigration, dislocation, and dread, accompanied by four supporting narratives.

    On a road trip through Africa, two English people—Bobby, a civil servant with a guilty appetite for African boys; and Linda, a supercilious “compound wife”—are driving back to their enclave after a stay in the capital. But in between lies the landscape of an unnamed country whose squalor and ethnic bloodletting suggest Idi Amin’s Uganda. And the farther Naipaul’s protagonists travel into it, the more they find themselves crossing the line that separates privileged outsiders from horrified victims. Alongside this Conradian tour de force are four incisive portraits of men seeking liberation far from home.

    By turns funny and terrifying, sorrowful and unsparing, In a Free State is Naipaul at his best.

  • When Tom’s heavily pregnant girlfriend Karin is rushed to the hospital, doctors are able to save the baby. But they are helpless to save Karin from what turns out to be acute leukemia. And in a cruel, fleeting moment Tom gains a daughter but loses his soulmate. In Every Moment We Are Alive is the story of the year that changes everything, as Tom must reconcile the fury and pain of loss with the overwhelming responsibility of raising his daughter, Livia, alone.

    By turns tragic and redemptive, meditative and breathless, achingly poignant and darkly funny, this autobiographical novel has been described as “hypnotic,” “impossible to resist,” and “one of the most powerful books about grief ever written.”

  • The Golden Age is a collection of Kenneth Grahame’s reminiscences of childhood, notable for their conception of a world where children are locked in perpetual warfare with the adult “Olympians” who have wholly forgotten how it feels to be young—a theme later explored by J. M. Barrie and other authors.

  • Secular humanism has triumphed. Everything the late Victorians and Edwardians believed would bring human happiness has been achieved: technology has made it so no one needs to work for a living, the social sciences ensure a smooth-running social order, and in the name of tolerance, religious beliefs have been uprooted and eliminated except for a single holdout: a largely discredited and rapidly shrinking Catholic Church. Yet people are unhappy.

    What has been created is a sterile world of crass materialism, a world without spiritual dimension, a world where people daily choose legalized euthanasia over the emptiness of existence. Out of this culture of despair, there arises a charismatic leader: Julian Felsenburgh. Soon the masses are in Felsenburgh’s thrall and he becomes leader of the world. But in their eagerness for change, have the citizens of the world embraced the Antichrist and hastened the end of days?

    Father Percy Franklin remains a bastion of stability, even as the Catholic Church disintegrates around him. Finally outlawed and driven underground, it is only this small and shrinking Church that stands against the “Lord of the World.”

  • The must-read new thriller from the bestselling author of Safe House

    Nick Miller and his team provide a unique and highly illegal service, relocating at-risk individuals across Europe with new identities and new lives. Nick excels at what he does for a reason: he’s spent years living in the shadows under an assumed name.

    But when Nick steps in to prevent the attempted murder of witness-in-hiding Kate Sutherland on the Isle of Man, he triggers a chain of events with devastating consequences for everyone he protects—because Nick and Kate share a common enemy in Connor Lane, a man who will stop at nothing to get what he wants, even if it means tearing Nick’s entire network apart.

  • From #1 internationally bestselling Swedish crime sensation Camilla Läckberg comes a new psychological thriller—irresistible for fans of Stieg Larsson and Jo Nesbø.

    Mats Sverin was Fjällbacka’s financial director on a regeneration project worth millions. When he’s found dead, detective Patrik Hedström must find answers.

    It seems Mats was a man who everybody liked yet nobody really knew—a man with something to hide. Is it just a coincidence that his high school sweetheart, Nathalie, has returned to the area? Does she know who Mats really was?

    Nathalie has her own secret. Something has forced her and her five-year-old son to flee to their remote family home on the Ghost Isle, where she’ll shield her son from the evils of the world.

    But as the murder investigation draws a blank, the police have to dig deeper—and before long, everyone’s lives will be dragged into the light.

  • Reimagining the Sutton Hoo dig, the greatest Anglo-Saxon archaeological discovery on British soil, John Preston brilliantly dramatizes three months of intense activity on a small estate when locals fought outsiders, professionals thwarted amateurs, and love and rivalry flourished in equal measure.

    In the long hot summer of 1939, Britain is preparing for war, but on a riverside farm in Suffolk there is excitement of another kind. Mrs. Pretty, a widowed farmer, has had her hunch proved correct that the strange mounds on her land hold buried treasure. As an archaeological dig proceeds against a background of mounting national anxiety, it becomes clear that this is no ordinary find, and the discovery leads to a host of jealousies and tensions.

    Elegantly crafted with great tenderness and a poignant attention to detail, The Dig is more than a novel about archaeology. At its very core, this is a novel about the traces of life we all leave behind.

  • In 1848, a motley crew of Danish sailors sets sail from the small island town of Marstal to fight the Germans. Not all of them return—and those who do will never be the same. Among them is the daredevil Laurids Madsen, who promptly escapes again into the anonymity of the high seas.

    This is also the story of the port town of Marstal, Denmark, whose inhabitants sailed the world from the mid-nineteenth century to the end of the Second World War and about the women and children they left behind. The novel tells of ships wrecked and blown up in wars, of places of terror and violence that continue to lure each generation with their cannibals, shrunken heads, prophetic dreams, forbidden passions, cowards, heroes, tragedies, and miraculous survivals.

    The result is a brilliant seafaring novel, a gripping saga encompassing industrial growth, the years of expansion and exploration, the crucible of the first half of the twentieth century, and most of all, the sea.

    Hailed in Europe as an instant classic, We, the Drowned, spanning four generations, two world wars, and a hundred years, is an epic tale of adventure, ruthlessness, and passion destined to take its place among the greatest seafaring literature.

  • Throughout her career, Patricia Highsmith brought a keen literary eye and a genius for plumbing the psychopathic mind to more than thirty works of fiction, unparalleled in their placid deviousness and sardonic humor. With deadpan accuracy, she delighted in creating true sociopaths in the guise of the everyday man or woman. In A Suspension of Mercy, a masterpiece of noir fantasy, Highsmith revels in eliciting the unsettling psychological forces that lurk beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life.

    Sydney Bartleby has killed his wife. At least, he has thought about it, compulsively, repeatedly, plotting schemes, designing escapes, forging alibis. Of course he has; he’s a thriller writer. He even knows how to dispose of her body. But when Alicia takes a long, unannounced holiday, Sydney descends into the treacherous world of his own fantasy.

  • A sterling roster of natural and social scientists in conversation with top-flight journalist Stefan Klein—shedding new light on their work, their lives, and what they still hope to discover

    When acclaimed science writer Stefan Klein asks Nobel Prize–winning chemist Roald Hoffmann what sets scientists apart, Hoffmann says, “First and foremost, curiosity.” In this collection of intimate conversations with nineteen of the world’s best-known scientists (including three Nobel Laureates), Klein lets us listen in as today’s leading minds reveal what they still hope to discover—and how their paradigm-changing work entwines with their lives outside the lab.

    From the sports car that physicist Steven Weinberg says helped him on his quest for “the theory of everything” to the jazz musicians who gave psychologist Alison Gopnik new insight into raising children, these scientists explain how they find inspiration everywhere.

    Hear from renowned scientists including:

    • evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins on selfishness,
    • anthropologist Sarah Hrdy on motherhood,
    • primatologist Jane Goodall on animal behavior,
    • neuroscientist V. S. Ramachandran on consciousness,
    • geographer Jared Diamond on chance in history, and
    • many other luminaries.
  • In the latest from worldwide bestseller Camilla Läckberg, a new novel from a reclusive Fjällbacka resident has enraptured the community—but what secrets and tragedies are lurking behind the pages and threatening to come to life?

    Christian Thydell’s dream has come true. His debut novel, The Mermaid, has been published to rave reviews. So why is he as distant and unhappy as ever?

    When crime writer Erica Falck, who helped Christian discover and develop his talents, learns he has been receiving anonymous threats, she investigates not just the messages but also the young author’s mysterious past. Then, one of Christian’s closet friends, Magnus, goes missing.

    Erica’s husband, Detective Patrik Hedström, has his worst suspicions confirmed as the mind-games aimed at Christian become a disturbing reality. Christian’s group of friends—a “gang of four” from childhood—is a tangled web of relationships, love triangles, and family secrets that Erica and Patrik must unravel in order to discover what really happened to Magnus and who is still threatening Christian.

    But, with the victims themselves concealing evidence, the investigation is going nowhere. Is their silence driven by fear or guilt? What is the secret they would rather die to protect than live to see revealed?

  • One of P. G. Wodehouse's most enticing later works, Barmy in Wonderland is a gem of a novel from the master of social satire and comedy.

    Cyril Fotheringay-Phipps, known to his friends as Barmy, has made a poor decision. He has invested ten thousand dollars in a stage production that seems doomed from the start in order to be near the woman of his dreams—Miss Dinty Moore. Will he find true love, or merely lose a fortune?

    Featuring a cast of sharply drawn characters, from haughty film stars and monstrous producers to detestable critics and total divas, Barmy in Wonderland is a brilliant satire on life behind the curtains.

  • The predecessor to Helen Macdonald’s H Is for Hawk, T. H. White’s nature-writing classic, The Goshawk, asks the age-old question: What is it that binds human beings to other animals? White, author of The Once and Future King and Mistress Masham’s Repose, was a young writer who found himself rifling through old handbooks of falconry. A particular sentence—“the bird reverted to a feral state”—seized his imagination, and, White later wrote, “A longing came to my mind that I should be able to do this myself. The word ‘feral’ has a kind of magical potency which allied itself to two other words, ‘ferocious’ and ‘free.’” Immediately White wrote to Germany to acquire a young goshawk. Gos, as White named the bird, was ferocious and Gos was free, and White had no idea how to break him in beyond the ancient (and, as it happened, long superseded) practice of depriving him of sleep, which meant that he, White, also went without rest. Slowly man and bird entered a state of delirium and intoxication, of attraction and repulsion that looks very much like love.

    White kept a daybook describing his volatile relationship with Gos—at once a tale of obsession, a comedy of errors, and a hymn to the hawk. It was this that became The Goshawk, one of modern literature’s most memorable and surprising encounters with the wilderness—as it exists both within us and without.

  • The quintessential comedy master returns with another tale that will have you laughing out loud and yearning for more.

    For Edmund Biffen Christopher, life is about to be very good—assuming he can stay out of trouble. If he can avoid being arrested until his thirtieth birthday, he will inherit his godfather's millions. The trouble is, Biff has a certain proclivity for getting into fisticuffs … particularly with policemen. And he's already nearing thirty.

    Adding to his troubles is Lord Tilbury, who wants the fortune for himself. If Tilbury can make Biff fall foul of the law, his wish will come true. True to form, Wodehouse will see to it that everyone gets what's coming to them, one way or another.

  • They are icons of the literary world whose soaring works have been discussed and analyzed in countless classrooms, homes, and pubs. Yet for most readers, the living, breathing human beings behind the classics have remained unknown—until now. In this utterly captivating book, Dr. Elliot Engel, a leading authority on the lives of great authors, illuminates the fascinating and flawed members of literature’s elite. In lieu of stuffy biographical sketches, Engel provides fascinating anecdotes.

    You’ll never look at these literary giants the same way again.

  • Filled with faces old and new, this collection of stories from the master of humor promises pure entertainment for audiobook lovers everywhere.

    P. G. Wodehouse's famed collection of ten stories marks the reappearance of many old friends—who find themselves in delightfully absurd situations. In "How's That, Umpire?" a mutual hatred of cricket reunites two lovers. In "Birth of a Salesman," Lord Emsworth has strayed from Blandings Castle to become an encyclopedia salesman for a day. "Success Story" tells of Ukridge's finest swindle yet—after which he finally emerges triumphant in the struggle against his fearsome aunt Julia. Other stories include "The Shadow Passes," "Bramley Is So Bracing," "Up from the Depths," "Feet of Clay," "Excelsior," "Rodney Has a Relapse," and "Tangled Hearts."

  • This stand-alone novel is another fine example of the wonderful, zany humor of P. G. Wodehouse.

    Imperious American widow Beatrice Chavender is visiting her sister's country home near London when a most unfortunate thing happens: she takes a bite of inferior ham while having her breakfast. Soon everyone around her is suffering the consequences—her sister, her brother-in-law, the butler, poor Sally, Sally's fianc├®, and even Mrs. Chavender's ex-fianc├®, "Ham King" J. B. Duff.

    Don't miss this wild romp from the acknowledged master of British humor.

  • George Uffenham, the eccentric sixth viscount of Uffenham, has just converted the family fortune into diamonds—and stashed them away in a secret hiding place. But as luck would have it, an unfortunate car accident soon thereafter causes him to forget the jewels' location. In order to recover the gems, he must let out his estate, Shipley Hall, to big game hunter Clarissa Cork and return posing as the butler, Cakebread. Thus disguised, he will have the opportunity to search all the rooms and reclaim his family pile!

    In typical Wodehouse fashion, Money in the Bank is a lively narrative full of witty banter, bumbling buffoons, and wild shenanigans.

  • Sir George Pyke is quite disappointed in his son Roderick's business acumen. Roderick, unlike his old man, lacks the aggressive drive required of a business tycoon. So the elder Pyke resolves to marry him off to the sprightly Felicia, who has enough spark to manage any man and may just do him a world of good. All is going well until Bill West arrives from New York. Felicia recognizes in this strong, ambitious chap the man for whom she should forsake all others—but making their way to the altar may be easier said than done.

    This romantic comedy from master humorist P. G. Wodehouse is sure to delight, whether you're new to his work or a longtime fan.

  • From New England Book Award winner Lily King comes a breathtaking novel about three young anthropologists of the 1930s caught in a passionate love triangle that threatens their bonds, their careers, and ultimately, their lives.

    English anthropologist Andrew Bankson has been alone in the field for several years, studying the Kiona river tribe in the territory of New Guinea. Haunted by the memory of his brothers' deaths and increasingly frustrated and isolated by his research, Bankson is on the verge of suicide when a chance encounter with colleagues, the controversial Nell Stone and her wry and mercurial Australian husband, Fen, pulls him back from the brink. Nell and Fen have just fled the bloodthirsty Mumbanyo and, in spite of Nell's poor health, are hungry for a new discovery. When Bankson finds them a new tribe nearby—the artistic, female-dominated Tam—he ignites an intellectual and romantic firestorm between the three of them that burns out of anyone's control.

    Set between two World Wars and inspired by events in the life of revolutionary anthropologist Margaret Mead, Euphoria is an enthralling story of passion, possession, exploration, and sacrifice from accomplished author Lily King.

  • Charlie Howard, part-time writer, part-time thief, has been engaged in a veritable spree of larceny and misappropriation since moving to Berlin. He's supposed to be working on his next novel. But high rent and a love for thrill-seeking has been hard on his word count. 

    But Charlie's larcenous binge is interrupted by the call to duty—on behalf of Her Majesty's Government. Four embassy employees are suspected of stealing a sensitive item. Charlie is to break into their homes, find the culprit, and recover the stolen property. But there's a catch. The item is so sensitive, Charlie isn't told what he's looking for. Not its size, not its weight, nothing. He's only told that he'll recognize it when he sees it. 

    Charlie has been a successful thief because he follows his own rules, the first being "Don't get caught." Well, after he enters the first suspect's home, he has to add a new rule: "Don't admire the view." As Charlie stares across the street, he sees something he really wishes he hadn't—a woman being murdered. And that's just for starters. What follows is a wild adventure in the former cauldron of spies.

  • Join Jordy, Alex, and Chloe as they cross the portal from our world to a strange and wonderful place, accessible for just a moment through the trapdoor of the attic in their family home. From hat-stand forests to towering hills of old musical instruments, deserts of old books, and a great water-tank lake, the vast continent they stumble upon is one of limitless surprises—and that's before they meet the inhabitants. The strange clans of small, lumpen people live in homes constructed from all manner of found things and drive vehicles powered by old sewing-machine parts. It is against this remarkable backdrop that the three children will embark on a spellbinding adventure to recover a prized possession, save a life, and—somehow—find a way back home.

    A story of courage, loyalty, and friendship; of incredible landscapes, ingenious devices, and cunning plot twists; Attica has a richness and depth that will delight listeners of all ages.

  • In this third and final installment of Anna Kendall's Soulvine Moor Chronicles, it's a race against time—and against death itself—if Roger is going to save both of his worlds. 

    It's a question of life, death—or something even worse

    Roger has faced down queens, barbarians, dangerous ghostly dogs, and even armies. There is one challenge left: to stand against the mysterious Soulviners and their dangerous plans to dominate the Land of the Dead. His friends held captive, his true powers still undiscovered, it's possible only the legendary bright and terrible sword can save them now.

    A fast-paced, character-driven story, this tale is packed with action, emotion, and danger.

  • The brilliant conclusion to the Palliser novels, this touching story follows the elderly Duke of Omnium, the former prime minister of England, as he struggles to overcome his grief at the loss of his beloved wife, Lady Glencora. To complicate matters, he must also deal with the willfulness of his three adult children as he tries to guide and support them—his plans for them are quite different from their own.

    While his two sons, sent down from university in disgrace, rack up gambling debts, the duke's only daughter yearns to marry the poor son of a country squire. Though the duke's noble plans for his children are ultimately thwarted, he comes to realize that parents can learn from their children as well.

    This final Palliser novel is a tale of love, family relationships, loyalty, and principles, as well as a compelling exploration of wealth, pride, and the strength of love.

  • Unscrupulous financial speculator Ferdinand Lopez, aspiring to marry into respectability and wealth, has society at his feet: well-connected ladies vying with each other to exert influence on his behalf. Even Lady Glencora, the wife of Plantagenet Palliser, prime minister of England, supports the exotic imposter. 

    Palliser, respectable man of power and inherited wealth, is appalled by the rise of this man who seemingly appeared out of nowhere. When Lopez achieves his socially advantageous marriage, Palliser must decide whether to stand by his wife’s support for Lopez in a by-election or leave him to face exposure as a fortune-hunting adventurer.

    This fifth installment in Trollope’s six-volume Palliser series is a brilliantly subtle portrait of love, marriage, and politics.

  • The classic account of the final offensive against Hitler's Third Reich

    The Battle for Berlin was the culminating struggle of World War II in the European theater. The last offensive against Hitler's Third Reich, it devastated one of Europe's historic capitals and marked the final defeat of Nazi Germany. It was also one of the war's bloodiest and most pivotal battles, whose outcome would shape international politics for decades to come.

    The Last Battle is Cornelius Ryan's compelling account of this final battle, a story of brutal extremes, of stunning military triumph alongside the stark conditions that the civilians of Berlin experienced in the face of the Allied assault. As always, Ryan delves beneath the military and political forces that were dictating events to explore the more immediate imperatives of survival, where, as the author describes it, "to eat had become more important than to love, to burrow more dignified than to fight, to endure more militarily correct than to win."

    The Last Battle is the story of ordinary people, both soldiers and civilians, caught up in the despair, frustration, and terror of defeat. It is history at its best, a masterful illumination of the effects of war on the lives of individuals, and one of the enduring works on World War II.


  • As the shadows lengthen over the June grass, all of England is heading for Epsom Down—high life and low life, society beauties and Whitechapel street girls, bookmakers and gypsies, hawkers and thieves. Hopes are high, nerves are taut, hats are tossed in the air—this is Derby Day. For months people have been waiting and plotting for this day. Everyone's eyes are on champion horse Tiberius, on whose performance half a dozen destinies depend. 

    In this rich and exuberant novel, rife with the idioms of Victorian England, the mysteries pile high, propelling us toward the day of the great race, and we wait with bated breath as the story gallops to a finish that no one expects.

  • His beloved wife having died in childbirth, Phineas Finn finds Irish society and his job as a poorhouse inspector dull and unsatisfying, particularly after the excitement of his former career as a member of Parliament. Back in England, the Whigs are determined to overturn the Tory majority in the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Since Finn had once been considered the most promising of the younger set, he is encouraged to run for office again. Bribery, romance, and murder are peppered throughout this Trollope novel.

    The fourth novel in the Palliser series, Phineas Redux stands alone as a compelling work of political intrigue, personal crisis, and romantic jealousy.

  • Mortal Coils is a collection of five pieces, which were written by Aldous Huxley in the 1920s. The first one, "The Giaconda Smile," is a short murder story. "Permutations among the Nightingales" is a play concerning amorous problems had by patrons of a certain establishment. "The Tillotson Banquet" tells of an old artist who was thought to be dead. "Green Tunnels" is about the boredom of a young girl on holiday with her family. "Nuns at Luncheon" is a story being told of a nun falling in love. The story mocks the writer's process, a concept Huxley used in his "Crome Yellow." Each story is read by the talented narrator, Simon Vance.

  • Sometimes a choice between life and death is no choice at all…

    Whether it’s a curse or a blessing, the fact remains: whenever Roger is in enough pain he can cross over to the Land of the Dead and speak to the people there. It’s an unexpected gift—and one that, throughout Roger’s life, has been taken advantage of by his violent uncle; the mysterious, malign Soulviners performing their dark magic on Soulvine Moor; and even by a queen, fighting for her queendom with every possible weapon she can find.

    But not anymore. The dangerous life of queen’s fool is behind him, young Princess Stephanie sits on the throne, and Roger is living a life of his choosing. He, Maggie, and Jee have a small, out of the way, increasingly prosperous inn, supported by their hard work. It’s a simple, industrious life—and it’s about to be destroyed.

    The war is not over. The savage invaders are back. And they’re looking for the boy who killed their leader. They’re looking for Roger.

  • Can You Forgive Her? is the first of the six Palliser novels. Here Trollope examines parliamentary election and marriage, politics and privacy. As he dissects the Victorian upper class, issues and people shed their pretenses under his patient, ironic probe.

    Alice Vavasor cannot decide whether to marry her ambitious but violent cousin George or the upright and gentlemanly John Grey—and so finds herself accepting and rejecting each of them in turn. She is increasingly confused about her own feelings and unable to forgive herself for such vacillation—a situation contrasted with that of her friend Lady Glencora, forced by “sagacious heads” to marry the rising politician Plantagenet Palliser in order to prevent her true love, the worthless Burgo Fitzgerald, from wasting her vast fortune. In asking his listeners to pardon Alice for her transgression of the Victorian moral code, Trollope created a telling and wide-ranging account of the social world of his day.

  • The third and least political novel of the Palliser series, The Eustace Diamonds concerns the beautiful pathological liar Lizzie Greystock. Determined to marry into wealth, Lizzie snares the ailing Sir Florian Eustace and quickly becomes a widow. Despite the brevity of their marriage, Lizzie still inherits according to the generous terms of Sir Florian’s will, which include the Eustace diamonds. When the Eustace family solicitor, Mr. Camperdown, begins to question her legal claim to the family heirloom, Lizzie begins to weave a tangled web of deception and crime to gain possession of the diamonds.

    Enlisting the aid of her cousin Frank Greystock, much to the dismay of his fiancée, Lucy Morris, Lizzie seeks to both avoid legal prosecution and have a true love affair, first with Frank, and later with Lord George de Bruce Carruthers. Considered a satire of the acceptance of the corrupting influence of money and greed in Victorian society, Trollope’s novel blends elements of mystery, politics, and romance in a memorable and thought-provoking work.

  • On the night before he is to be married, Michael Crawford joins his friends for an evening of drinking and revelry. In a fateful, inebriated moment, Crawford slips his fiancée’s ring on the finger of a nearby statue. The following day, the statue is gone.

    When Crawford discovers his bride brutally murdered in their wedding bed, he is forced to flee not only to prove his innocence but to avoid the deadly embrace of a vampire who has claimed him as her true bridegroom. Joining forces with Byron, Keats, and Shelley in a desperate journey that crisscrosses Europe, Crawford desperately seeks his freedom from this vengeful lover who haunts his dreams and will not rest until she destroys all that he cherishes. Told in the guise of a secret history, this tale of passion and terror brilliantly evokes the nineteenth century. The chilling horror and adventure blend to create a riveting romantic fantasy.

  • Whether it’s a curse, or a blessing, or an ability, the fact remains that whenever Roger is injured or in enough pain he crosses over to the land of the dead. Once there, there are rules. Only the newly dead will talk, for example, and nothing will raise the longer dead from their tranquility. There are rules in the land of the living as well, rules which would have Roger hanged for witchcraft if he was ever caught. But refusing to cross over isn’t an option. His uncle depends on Roger to hide under the table in their fairground act, listen to the recently bereaved asking questions of their dear departed, and then cross over to find the answers. It’s a hard way of life, made all the harder as his uncle’s fists usually provide the trigger for Roger to cross over. It’s not the only way of life, though, and when Roger sees a chance to escape he fights for it—little knowing that love, loss, shocking revelations and, ultimately, war lie ahead of him.

  • This superlative collection of futuristic tales explores ground-breaking supernatural themes from the founding heroes of the science-fiction genre. The short story form is perfect for capturing the atmospheric tension of these legendary stories.

    This collection includes the following stories:

    • "The Door in the Wall" by H. G. Wells—A man must choose between the rationality of science and the magic of imagination.
    • "All Cats Are Gray" by Andre Norton—A down-on-his-luck spaceman and a mysterious woman and her cat take off to explore and bring back a derelict ship said to hold great treasure.
    • "A Martian Odyssey" by Stanley G. Weinbaum—A four-man crew lands on Mars and makes a startling discovery.
    • "Victory" by Lester del Rey—A victorious captain returns to his home planet after an alien war and finds that victory has a very steep price.
    • "The Moon Is Green" by Fritz Leiber—On post-apocalyptic Earth, a woman comes face-to-face with humanity exposed to catastrophe.
    • "The Winds of Time" by James H. Schmitz—When the spaceship is battered by an unknown force, the pilot has to investigate—and what he finds could alter his life forever.
    • "The Defenders" by Philip K. Dick—Years after nuclear war between the US and the Soviet Union has contaminated the Earth's surface, soldier robots continue the fight on humanity's behalf.
    • "Missing Link" by Frank Herbert—Lewis Orne is sent to investigate a missing ship and runs into "native" trouble on the planet Gienah III.
  • Thirty-five years after the events of The Three Musketeers, D’Artagnan, Athos, Porthos, and Aramis find themselves caught between conflicting loyalties in a power struggle that could change the face of the French monarchy.

    For eight long years, a young prisoner has languished within the dreaded Bastille, his face hidden in an iron mask. He knows neither his true identity nor the crime for which he has been imprisoned. But Aramis knows this secret—a secret so dangerous, it could topple the King from his throne. Will his cause divide the once indivisible band of musketeers?

    A tale of mystery, adventure, and political intrigue, this conclusion to Dumas’s swashbuckling musketeer saga is based on the true story of a masked prisoner who dwelled in the Bastille during Louis XIV’s reign and whose identity remains in question to this day.

  • Following The Three Musketeers and Twenty Years After, Dumas continued his D'Artagnan romances with a final trilogy set during the reign of Louis XIV. Louise de La Valli├¿re, the second novel in that trilogy, continues the suspense which began with The Vicomte de Bragelonne and will end with The Man in the Iron Mask. Filled with behind-the-scenes political intrigues and set against a tender love story, the novel brings the aging Musketeers out of retirement to face an impending crisis within the royal court of France.

    It is 1661, and King Louis XIV is strengthening France's military, preparing to undermine superintendent of finance Nicolas Fouquet at the behest of wily social-climber Jean-Baptiste Colbert. D'Artagnan has assumed command of the king's Musketeers while Aramis has risen to the top of the Jesuit order. Meanwhile, Porthos remains tied to the military, and the wealthy Athos is concerned with the affairs of his son, Raoul, who finds himself smitten with the lovely Louise de la Vallière.

    As always, Dumas brings French history to life with excitement and romance.

  • Dumas continues his Musketeer Romances with a final trilogy. The Vicomte de Bragelonne opens an epic adventure which continues with Louise de la Vallière and reaches its climax in The Man in the Iron Mask.

    It is May 1660, and the fate of nations is at stake. Mazarin plots, Louis XIV is in love, and Raoul de Bragelonne, son of Athos, is intent on serving France and winning the heart of Louise de la Vallière. Meanwhile, d’Artagnan learns that his old comrades have great projects in hand. Athos seeks the restoration of Charles II, while Aramis, with Porthos in tow, has a secret plan involving a masked prisoner and the fortification of the island of Belle-Ile. D’Artagnan finds a thread leading him to the French court, the banks of the Tyne, the beaches of Holland, and the dunes of Brittany.

    Never short on swashbuckling action, breathtaking suspense, and romantic intrigue, Dumas’s classic works are must-haves for any collection.

  • Narcissus and Goldmund is the story of a passionate yet uneasy friendship between two men of opposite character. Narcissus, an ascetic instructor at a cloister school, has devoted himself solely to scholarly and spiritual pursuits. One of his students is the sensual, restless Goldmund, who is immediately drawn to his teacher's fierce intellect and sense of discipline. When Narcissus persuades the young student that he is not meant for a life of self-denial, Goldmund sets off in pursuit of aesthetic and physical pleasures, a path that leads him to a final, unexpected reunion with Narcissus.

  • Emma Bovary is a sensuous, sentimental young woman whose romantic ideals make her dissatisfied with her humdrum married life. Attempting to escape into an exciting world of passion and dreams, she drifts into sordid affairs with Rodolphe Boulanger and Léon Dupuis. The first of these lovers, an older man, dominates the affair, while the second, inexperienced and young, is dominated. The eventual collapse of Emma’s romantic dreams is inevitable, and her disillusionment leads ultimately to her doom.

    A brilliant psychological portrait, Madame Bovary searingly depicts the human mind in search of transcendence. Acclaimed as a masterpiece upon its publication in 1857, it catapulted Flaubert to the ranks of the world’s greatest novelists and ushered in a new age of realism in literature.

  • While on a sailing trip in the Baltic Sea, two young adventurers-turned-spies uncover a secret German plot to invade England. Widely recognized as the first modern spy thriller, this lone masterpiece by World War I Royal Navy officer Erskine Childers was written in 1903 as a wake-up call to the British government to attend to its North Sea defenses. It accomplished that task and has been considered a classic of espionage literature ever since. Praised for its nautical action and richly authentic background as much as for its suspenseful spycraft, The Riddle of the Sands is the brilliant forerunner to the realism of Graham Greene and John le Carré.

  • Dorian Gray, a handsome and narcissistic young man, lives thoughtlessly for his own pleasure—an attitude encouraged by the company he keeps. One day, after having his portrait painted, Dorian makes a frivolous Faustian wish: that he should always remain as young and beautiful as he is in that painting, while the portrait grows old in his stead.

    The wish comes true, and Dorian soon finds that none of his wicked actions have visible consequences. Realizing that he will appear fresh and unspoiled no matter what kind of life he lives, Dorian becomes increasingly corrupt, unchecked by public opinion. Only the portrait grows degenerate and ugly, a powerful symbol of Dorian’s internal ruin.

    Wilde’s dreamlike exploration of life without limits scandalized its late-Victorian audience and has haunted readers’ imaginations for more than a hundred years.

  • Anthony Trollope's Barsetshire novels are well loved for their wit, satire, and keen perceptions of human nature. This final installment brings back some of his best loved characters: Major Henry Grantly, first met as a boy in The Warden, the sparkling Lily Dale and her thwarted lover, Johnny Eames, and the domineering Mrs. Proudie.

    Barsetshire's latest scandal involves Mr. Crawley, the impoverished curate of Hogglestock, accused of theft when he uses a large check to pay off his debts. Unable to remember how he came by the money, he feels ashamed and even begins to question his own sanity. The scandal fiercely divides the citizens of Barsetshire and threatens to tear apart Mr. Crawley's family. Trollope offers a devastating portrait of a man oppressed by poverty, social humiliation, and self-doubt.

  • "Hither the Gods come not at any summons. The Nameless One has insulted them and is forever alone. Go not nigh, lest their vengeance wither you away!" The warning was inscribed on the entrance of the hidden tomb, forgotten for millennia in the sands of mystic Egypt. Then the archaeologists and grave robbers came in search of the fabled Jewel of Seven Stars, which they found clutched in the hand of the mummy. Few heeded the ancient warning, until all who came in contact with the jewel began to die in a mysterious and violent way, with the marks of a strangler around their neck.

    Now, in a bedroom filled with ancient relics, a distinguished Egyptologist lies senseless, stricken by a force that challenges human understanding. From beyond the grave, Queen Tera is reaching out for the mysterious jewel that will bring her five-thousand-year-old plan to fulfillment.

  • Mark Robarts, a young vicar, is newly arrived in the village of Framley. With ambitions to further his career, he seeks connections in the county's high society. He is soon preyed upon by a local member of parliament to guarantee a substantial loan, which Mark in a moment of weakness agrees to—despite knowing the man is a notorious debtor—and which brings him to the brink of ruin. He must face the awful reality this loss will bring his family.

    Meanwhile, Mark's sister, Lucy, is deeply in love with Lord Lufton, the son of the lofty Lady Lufton. Lord Lufton has proposed, but Lady Lufton is against the marriage, preferring that her son choose the coldly beautiful Griselda Grantly.

    The novel will conclude with four happy marriages, including one involving Doctor Thorne, the hero of the preceding book in the Chronicles of Barsetshire series.

    One of Trollope's most popular novels, Framley Parsonage depicts nineteenth-century country life beautifully, crafted with acute insight into human nature.

  • In 1685, Irish physician Peter Blood is happily settled in a small English town when the rebellion of the Duke of Monmouth interrupts the peace. After saving the life of a wounded nobleman who turns out to be a rebel, Blood is charged with treason and sentenced to ten years as an indentured slave in the Caribbean colonies.

    On the islands, Blood is recognized for his knowledge as a physician, and thus he develops a romance with a young lady. But their attachment is ill-fated, as her father is the owner of Blood's servitude. When Spaniards attack the colony, Blood and his fellow convicts take advantage of their victory celebration to steal their ship, sailing off to become the boldest and most fearless pirates on the Spanish Main.

  • “Pirates, Buccaneers, Marooners, those cruel but picturesque sea wolves who once infested the Spanish Main, all live in present-day conceptions in great degree as drawn by the pen and pencil of Howard Pyle…It is improbable that anyone else will ever bring his combination of interest and talent to the depiction of these old-time Pirates, any more than there could be a second Remington to paint the now extinct Indians and gun-fighters of the Great West.”

    So writes Merle Johnson, who has here gathered together in one volume all of the nineteenth-century author-artist’s classic pirate stories that had been scattered through many magazines and books. Well-researched and with richly drawn characters, Pyle’s work will appeal to students of history and adventure lovers alike.


  • Imagine a Britain stripped of democracy, a world of the not-too-distant future in which freedom has been surrendered willingly to a totalitarian regime which rose to power by exploiting the people’s worst fears and most damning weaknesses.

    This is the setting for the parable of Evey, a young woman saved from death by a masked man calling himself V. Beguiling and dangerous, V ignites the fuse of revolution when he urges his fellow citizens to shed the blanket of tyranny and oppression that they have permitted themselves to be cloaked in. While those in power take steps to neutralize the threat, police pursue the mystery of V, unaware of the terrible truth that awaits them. But it is Evey who, with V as her enigmatic guide, sets out on the painful path of deception and self-discovery, deconstruction and re-creation, vindication and vengeance.

  • In 1878, two young stage magicians clash in the dark during the course of a fraudulent séance. From this moment on, their lives become webs of deceit and revelation as they vie to outwit and expose each other.

    Their rivalry will take them to the peaks of their careers—but with terrible consequences. In the course of pursuing each other’s ruin, they will deploy all the deception their magician’s craft can command, the highest misdirection and the darkest science. Blood will be spilled, but it will not be enough. In the end, their legacy will pass on for generations to descendants who must, for their sanity’s sake, untangle their puzzle.

  • This magnificent sequel to The Warden satirizes the struggle for ascendancy among the clergy of a cathedral city as they contend for each newly vacant post within the archdiocese.

    The contest for power is between Archdeacon Grantly and his followers, who favor high-church tendencies, and the new bishop and his followers, with their distinctly low-church preferences. Speaking loudly and cleverly for the latter is the ambitious Mr. Obadiah Slope, championed by Mrs. Proudie and the newcomers. Each wishes to become the dominant voice in the quiet diocese of Barchester, but their antics, including romantic ones, reveal that their priorities are more social and political than spiritual or moral.

    Their intrigues and misunderstandings entwine through the lives of many memorable characters and provide a humorous backdrop for an exploration of the clash between old and new ways in Victorian England.

  • Anthony Trollope once said, "A novel should give a picture of common life enlivened by humor and sweetened by pathos." Trollope admirably fulfills his own criteria in this charming third novel in the Chronicles of Barsetshire.

    When Doctor Thomas Thorne adopts his niece, Mary, he chooses to keep secret her illegitimate birth as he introduces her to the best local social circles. There she meets and falls in love with Frank Gresham, heir to a vastly mortgaged estate. With such a deeply depleted fortune, Frank is obliged to find a wealthy wife. And so, at the behest of his mother, Mary is banished and Frank proposes to woman deemed financially appropriate, despite his unfailing love for Mary.

    Only Doctor Thorne knows that Mary is to inherit a large legacy that will make her acceptable to the otherwise disapproving middle-class society to which Frank belongs. The question is, will he reveal the secret before it's too late?

    Where fiery passion fails, understated English virtues of patience, persistence, and good humor prevail in this most appealing of Trollope's novels.

  • This historical romance, perhaps the greatest cloak-and-sword story ever written, relates the adventures of four fictional swashbuckling heroes who loyally served the French kings Louis XIII and Louis XIV.

    When the dashing young d’Artagnan arrives in Paris from Gascony, he becomes embroiled in three duels with the musketeers Athos, Porthos, and Aramis. But when he proves himself by fighting with, not against, the three Musketeers, they form a quick and lasting friendship. The daring escapades of the four pit them against the master of intrigue, Cardinal Richelieu, and the quintessential wicked woman, Lady de Winter.

    Alexandre Dumas’s swashbuckling epic has embroidered upon history a colorful world of swordplay, intrigue, and romance.

  • TheSmall House at Allingtonintroduces Trollope's most beloved heroine, the charming Lily Dale, to the Barsetshire scene. Lily is the niece of Squire Dale, an embittered old bachelor living in the main house on his property at Allington. He has loaned an adjacent small house rent-free to his widowed sister-in-law and her daughters, Lily and Bell. But the relations between the two houses are strained, affecting the romantic entanglements of the girls.

    Lily has long been unsuccessfully wooed by John Eames, a junior clerk at the income tax office. The handsome and personable Adolphus Crosbie looks like an enticing alternative; but Adolphus has his eye on the rigid Lady Alexandrina de Courcy, whose family is in a position to further his career. Bell, meanwhile, must choose between the local doctor, James Crofts, and her wealthy cousin, Bernard.

  • The Warden is the first of the six classic Chronicles of Barsetshire novels, Trollope's best-loved and most famous work.

    Anthony Trollope's classic novel centers on Mr. Harding, a clergyman of great personal integrity, whose charitable income far exceeds the purpose for which it was intended. On discovering this, young John Bold turns his reforming zeal toward exposing what he regards as an abuse of privilege, despite the fact that he is in love with Mr. Harding's daughter, Eleanor.

    Though the bishop and archdeacon stand behind him, the honest Reverend Harding is caught in a moral dilemma, questioning whether he truly deserves the money or should resign.

    Set in the world of the Victorian professional and landed classes that Trollope portrayed so superbly, The Warden explores the complexities of human motivation and social morality.

  • Every two years the international art world descends on Venice for the opening of the Biennale. Among them is Jeff Atman, a jaded and dissolute journalist, whose dedication to the cause of bellini-fuelled party-going is only intermittently disturbed by the obligation to file a story. When he meets the spellbinding Laura, he is rejuvenated, ecstatic. Their romance blossoms quickly, but is it destined to disappear just as rapidly?

    Every day thousands of pilgrims head to the banks of the Ganges at Varanasi, the holiest Hindu city in India. Among their number is a narrator who may or may not be the Atman previously seen in Venice. Intending to visit only for a few days, he ends up staying for months, and suddenly finds a hitherto unexamined idea of himself, the self. In a romance he can only observe, he sees a reflection of the kind of pleasures that, willingly or not, he has renounced. In the process, two ancient and watery cities become versions of each other. Could two stories, in two different cities, actually be one and the same story?

    An irrepressible and wildly original novel of erotic fulfillment and spiritual yearning, Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi is dead-on in its evocation of place, longing, and the possibility of neurotic enlightenment.

  • In London in 1735, eleven-year-old Forrest Harper is living with his family in the Tower of London. There he helps his father tend the ravens and guard the prisoners. Still, life is lonely. When vicious Scottish Rebels are captured, Forrest is delighted. Perhaps now he can prove his courage and impress the local bullies who torment him. His happiness is short-lived, though, when the Harpers are only given custody of Maddy, a Scottish Rebel’s daughter, for a rebel in a dress will surely make Forrest a laughingstock.

    As the days pass, Maddy’s beauty and warmth and her touching stories of life in Scotland seal a friendship between them. But when she is slated for execution, Forrest is faced with a horrifying choice: commit treason and help her escape, or obey the law and allow his innocent friend to be executed.

  • In the days of chivalry, when men were made of iron, young Myles Falworth, a lord’s son, is forced to make his own fortune when his father is unjustly disgraced for treason. How he enters the service of a powerful lord, rises to knighthood, defeats his father’s old enemy in thrilling combat, and at last wins the friendship of the king is told against the background of the dangerous times of fourteenth-century England.

    Master storyteller Howard Pyle is at his best, incorporating fascinating historical information about medieval life into this fast-moving and entertaining story of a boy’s fight to restore his family’s rights and good name. This classic story remains a favorite not only among young readers but also among educators because of the author’s effortless way of teaching virtues such as courage, loyalty, steadfastness, and generosity.

  • This gripping story of courage and achievement is an account of Robert Falcon Scott's last fateful expedition to the Antarctic, as told by surviving expedition member Apsley Cherry-Garrard. Cherry-Garrard tells of the journey from England to South Africa and southward to the ice floes, where began the unforgettable polar journey across a forbidding and inhospitable region. On November 12, 1912, in arctic temperatures, Cherry-Garrard, in a search party, found the bodies of Scott and his companions, along with their poignant last notebook entries, some of them recorded in this work.

    Among Cherry-Garrard's friends and admirers were John Galsworthy, H. G. Wells, Arnold Bennett, and Bernard Shaw. His background in the arts and humanities makes The Worst Journey in the World stand out as a literary accomplishment as well as a classic in the annals of exploration.

  • In The Idiot, a saintly man, Prince Myshkin, is thrust into the heart of a society more concerned with wealth, power, and sexual conquest than the ideals of Christianity. Myshkin soon finds himself at the center of a violent love triangle in which a notorious woman and a beautiful young girl become rivals for his affections. Extortion, scandal, and murder follow, testing the wreckage left by human misery to find “man in man.”

    The Idiot is a quintessentially Russian novel, one that penetrates the complex psyche of the Russian people. “They call me a psychologist,” wrote Dostoevsky. “That is not true. I’m only a realist in the higher sense; that is, I portray all the depths of the human soul.”

  • Encamped in the Holy Land, the crusaders are torn by the dissensions and jealousies of their leaders. The army’s impotence is accentuated by the illness of their chief, Richard I of England. Meanwhile, a poor but doughty Scottish crusader known as Sir Kenneth, on a mission far from the camp, encounters a Saracen Emir. After an inconclusive combat, he strikes up a friendship with the Emir, who turns out to be Saladin himself. His alliance with the Moor will save him from more than one misfortune.

    Carrying a mystical talisman, Saladin enters the camp of the crusaders in disguise and cures Richard. When Sir Kenneth is later falsely dishonored, Saladin is in a position to intervene in his execution and receive him as his slave. Presenting the knight with the talisman, Saladin then arranges a plot for Sir Kenneth’s vindication.

  • No writer is more identified with the modern idea of Christmas than Charles Dickens. In some ways, Dickens helped define the holiday that we now celebrate by immortalizing it as a time of warmth and sharing, with an emphasis on family and friends.

    Dickens wrote all the stories presented here during the 1850s as contributions to the special Christmas issues of Household Words, the weekly magazine he founded and edited. Included are fictional sketches verging on the autobiographical, recollections of childhood, reflections on past holidays and old friends, as well as tales of misunderstandings and lost opportunities. They reaffirm the virtue of nurturing our traditions and offer a master storyteller's vision of the real meaning of Christmas.

  • The first book written by C. S. Lewis after his conversion, The Pilgrim's Regress is, in a sense, a record of Lewis' own search for meaning and spiritual satisfaction that eventually led him to Christianity. It is the story of John and his odyssey to an enchanting island that has created in him an intense longing, a mysterious, sweet desire. John's pursuit of this desire takes him through adventures with such people as Mr. Enlightenment, Media Halfways, Mr. Mammon, Mother Kirk, Mr. Sensible, and Mr. Humanist and through such cities as Thrill and Eschropolis, as well as the Valley of Humiliation. Though the dragons and giants here are different from those in Bunyan's The Pilgrim's Progress, Lewis' allegory performs the same function of enabling the author to say in fable form what would otherwise have demanded a full-length philosophy of religion.

  • Sigmund Freud’s landmark work The Interpretation of Dreams forever changed the way we think about our dreams. It is here that Freud made many of his most important discoveries about the subconscious mind, as he explored why we dream, what we dream, and what our dreams mean. What does it symbolize when we fly in our dreams? When we fall?

    Freud’s dream analysis proved particularly valuable in his treatment of abnormal mental states. He claimed that dreams not only reveal the cryptic mechanisms of phobias, obsessions, and delusions but are also the most potent weapon in the healing of them. It is through our dreams that the unconscious mind strives to resolve conflict.

  • Phineas Finn is an Irish MPA who is climbing the political ladder, largely through the assistance of his string of lovers. The questions he is forced to ask himself about honesty, independence, and parliamentary democracy are questions still asked today.

    Phineas Finn is the second of Anthony Trollope's six Palliser novels, which together comprise a large, coherent composition that captures the fashions, manners, and politics of two decades of society in the high Victorian period. Trollope's unrivaled understanding of the institutions of mid–Victorian England and his sympathetic vision of human fallibility are informed by an unobtrusive irony that shines in these stories.

  • The most gorgeously theatrical of all Dickens’ novels, Nicholas Nickleby follows the delightful adventures of a hearty young hero in nineteenth-century England. Nicholas, a gentleman’s son fallen upon hard times, must set out to make his way in the world. His journey is accompanied by some of the most swaggering scoundrels and unforgettable eccentrics in Dickens’ pantheon.

    From the dungeon-like Yorkshire boys’ boarding school run by the cruel Wackford Squeers to the high-spirited stage of Vincent Crummles’ extraordinary acting troupe, Nicholas Nickleby is a triumph of the imagination, bursting with color, humor, and poignant social commentary.

  • Do miracles really happen? Can we know if the supernatural world exists?

    “The central miracle asserted by Christians is the Incarnation. They say that God became Man. Every other miracle prepares the way for this, or results from this.” This is the key statement of Miracles, in which C. S. Lewis shows that a Christian must not only accept but rejoice in miracles as a testimony of the unique personal involvement of God in His creation.

    Using his characteristic lucidity and wit to develop his argument, Lewis challenges the rationalists, agnostics, and deists on their own grounds. He makes an impressive case for the irrationality of their assumptions by positing: “Those who assume that miracles cannot happen are merely wasting their time by looking into the texts. We know in advance what results they will find for they have begun by begging the question.”

  • Here are two classics of moral philosophy from one of the most revered Christian voices of our time.

    In The Abolition of Man, C. S. Lewis reflects on society and nature and the challenges of how best to educate our children. He describes what public education should be and how far from this standard modern education has fallen. Lewis eloquently argues that, as a society, we need to underpin reading and writing lessons with moral education.

    In The Great Divorce, Lewis presents his vision of the afterworld. A fictional narrator boards a bus on a drizzly English afternoon and embarks on an incredible voyage through Heaven and Hell, where he meets a host of supernatural beings and comes to some significant realizations about the nature of good and evil.

  • For centuries, Christians have been tormented by one question above all: “If God is good and all-powerful, why does he allow his creatures to suffer pain?” Is there justice or wisdom to be won by suffering, or some reward beyond understanding? And what of the suffering of animals, which neither deserve pain nor can be improved by it? Is the quantity and variety of suffering in the world inconsistent with, or evidence against, an omnipotent and perfectly loving God?

    The greatest Christian thinker of all time sets out to disentangle this knotty issue. With his signature wealth of compassion and insight, C. S. Lewis offers answers to these crucial questions and shares his hope and wisdom to help heal a world hungering for a true understanding of human nature, free will, and the will of the Divine.

  • Who rules this world—God or the Devil?

    This theological classic, first published in 1919, was notorious for its independent take on the Bible. In it, Arthur Pink fiercely defends the sovereignty of God against the apparent threat of the Devil. His doctrinal belief is that God both elects and reprobates, as Romans 9:21–23 clearly teaches. "Fear not!" he admonishes. "All things are moving in accord with His eternal purpose, and therefore, all things are working together for the good of them that love God."

    With admirable facility and clear, simple language, Pink uses the scriptures to answer a host of questions that may have remained unresolved in the minds of many Christians. The result is an important guide post for the recently converted as well as a strong defense against the free will of man.

  • Padraic Colum's classic retelling combines the immortal stories from Homer's Iliad and Odyssey into one glorious saga of heroism and magical adventure. Come voyage to ancient Greece with Achilles who, guided by the gods, seeks vengeance on the Trojans. And follow Odysseus on his perilous journey on the sea—through the land of the Cyclopes, past Circe the Enchantress, the terrible Charybdis, and the six-headed serpent Scylla.

    Young readers will delight in these accessible tales of action and adventure.

  • This sinister masterpiece was Dickens’ last completed novel and perhaps his ultimate vision of a dark, macabre London and the corrupting power of money. Opening with a father and daughter scavenging for corpses on the Thames, this chilling tale unfolds around drownings, disguises and doubles, violence, murder, and triumphant love.

    Young John Harmon, presumed killed on his return home to England, is very much alive. The heir to a dust merchant’s fortune, he goes to work under an assumed name for his father’s current heirs, the amiable, elderly Boffins—who are about to be blackmailed by the unscrupulous one-legged Wegg.

    So begins the intrigue in a novel that is quintessentially Dickensian in flavor—in its grotesque caricatures, its rich symbolism, and in the astonishing realism of its heroine, Bella Wilfer, one of Dickens’ most splendid female characters.

  • One of the most popular of Hardy’s novels, this charming pastoral idyll is a lightly humorous depiction of life in an early Victorian rural community. Drawn from Hardy’s childhood memories, it represents, he said, “a true picture at first hand of the personages, ways, and customs which were common in the villages.”

    The story delicately balances the concerns of the Mellstock parish choir with a romance between Dick Dewy, a member of the choir, and Fancy Day, the village schoolmistress. While the choir battles for its survival against the new vicar’s mechanical church organ, personal conflicts arise over the anachronistic customs of tradition.

  • Little Amy Dorrit was born in debtor’s prison, where her father, an aristocrat by birth, has been an inmate for the past twenty years.

    Though her father is too proud to acknowledge their reduced status, Amy secretly works as a seamstress to support her family. In this way she meets and befriends Arthur, her employer’s son, who wants to help.

    When Arthur uncovers an unknown inheritance due to Mr. Dorrit, the family is finally freed from prison. Newly wealthy, they travel to Italy, where Mr. Dorrit instructs his children to sever old connections and learn the ways of the upper class. But leaving their past behind proves not to be so easy.

    Meanwhile, their benefactor, Arthur, falls on hard times himself when he becomes the victim of a gigantic financial fraud. When he next meets Little Dorrit, their places are reversed: Arthur is imprisoned in the Marshalsea, too ashamed of his reduced status to declare his love. But to Little Dorrit, love has always transcended class.

    A masterly evocation of the state and psychology of imprisonment, Little Dorrit is one of the supreme works of Dickens’ maturity.

  • Alexandre Dumas brings an extraordinary period of history to life in this exciting period romance.

    It is the twilight of the reign of King Charles IX, and France is dominated by religious wars between Catholics and Protestants. King Charles' sister, Marguerite, daughter of staunch Catholics Henri II and Catherine de Medici, is set to marry the Protestant Henri de Navarre. Their marriage sets off a series of conspiracies between the Catholics and the Protestants in a dangerous and breathtaking game for power.

    From the mysterious murder of Henri de Navarre's mother, cleverly plotted by the evil Catherine de Medici, to the notorious Saint Bartholomew Massacre, which killed thousands of Protestants lured to Paris by the wedding, Queen Margot is full of suspense, intrigue, betrayals, and daring escapes. At the center of it all are the good-hearted Marguerite and Henri, perfect political allies with fascinating love lives.

  • Theodore Gumbril, a mild young Oxford tutor, has become thoroughly dismayed by the formality of college life and the staid British institutions of learning. An impetuous need for celebration, even rebellion, possesses him. He and his bohemian companions embark on wild and daring bacchanalian adventures that steer them resolutely away from stifling conventions of behavior, charging them for the first time with an exuberant vitality and lust for life.

    A sardonic and outspoken novel, Antic Hay unfolds its polemical theme against the backdrop of London’s postwar nihilistic bohemia. This is Huxley at his biting, brilliant best—a novel charged with excitement and loud with satiric laughter at conventional morality and stuffy people everywhere.

  • For nearly ninety years, Lord Charnwood’s Abraham Lincoln has been the standard life history of the Great Emancipator. It has become one of the great classics of modern biography and has been read by millions.

    Charnwood describes the frontier life and continual self-education that developed Lincoln’s rare character and helped him to adapt to great events and demands such as few other men have experienced. Lincoln the man is analyzed against the dramatic historical background of the Colonial days, the Revolution, the War of 1812, the Missouri Compromise, secession, and an exciting history of the Civil War. Lincoln’s administrative genius, his war strategy, and his neglect of the lesser for the greater are all treated in this masterly portrait.

  • Even more thrilling thanTarzan of the Apesis the sequel,The Return of Tarzan.Combine the uncanny mystery of Conan Doyle, the vivid imagination of H. G. Wells, and the thrill of Rider Haggard's stories and you'll know why Tarzan has proved to be one of the most sensational figures in fiction.

    Tarzan had renounced his right to the woman he loved, and civilization held no pleasure for him. After a brief and harrowing period among men, he had turned back to the African jungle where he had grown to manhood—a world he understood. It was there that he first heard of Opar, the city of gold, a relic of the fabled Atlantis.

    It was a city of hideous men and of beautiful, savage women, a city ruled by La, high priestess of the Flaming God. Its altars were stained with the blood of many sacrifices. Heedless of the dangers, Tarzan led a band of savage warriors toward the ancient crypts—and even more ancient evil—of Opar.

  • Bleak House opens in a London shrouded by fog—a fog that swirls most densely about the Court of Chancery, where the obscure case of Jarndyce v. Jarndyce lies lost in endless litigation, slowly devouring an inheritance in legal costs.

    Against this ominous background, Dickens’ rich tapestry of a novel weaves together the fortunes and desires of several characters whose fates are tied to the case: Ada and Richard, two young orphans who stand to inherit and wish to marry when they do; the worthy John Jarndyce, their voluntary guardian while the case is pending; and Esther Summerson, Jarndyce’s protégée, whose romance is complicated by torn loyalties and whose heritage is shrouded in mystery and scandal. This darkly comic portrait of London society is often regarded as Dickens’ best.

  • Dickens' first historical novel is set in 1780s England at the time of the Gordon Riots. In a case of mistaken identity, Barnaby Rudge—a pale half-wit with long red hair who dresses all in green and carries a large raven on his back—is arrested as the leader of a mob of anti-Catholic rioters. He is condemned to death on the gallows, but an upright locksmith named Gabriel Varden comes to his aid.

    Set beneath the cloud of an unsolved murder, this classic tale of treachery and forbidden love is often overlooked by present-day readers. Nevertheless, Dickens provides another memorable cast of characters, including the dull-witted, tyrannical John Willet, Dennis the Hangman, and Hugh the savage ostler.

  • For his Royal Highness Klaus Heinrich, prince of a small German duchy, life means servitude to traditional ducal functions—until he meets the independent-spirited and liberal-minded American Miss Spoelmann. During the course of his unorthodox and quixotically tender wooing, Heinrich is forced to reach into unknown depths of his personality and discover the real meaning of the word "duty."

    Peopled with a range of characters from aristocrat to artisan, Royal Highness provides a microcosmic view of Europe before the Great War. Mann's charming fable of a decaying, stratified society rejuvenated by modern forces illustrates what he regarded as a universal truth: that ripeness and death are necessary conditions for rebirth.

  • Frank Harris, a journalist and editor, delighted in Oscar Wilde’s genial wit and self-assurance. Wilde’s verbal charms evoked Harris’ financial and emotional support when Victorian England disdained the playwright for his paganism and imprisoned him for “homosexual offenses.” Harris relates the proceedings of Wilde’s trial and the malice that sent him to France after release from prison.

    Later years found Harris increasingly frustrated with Wilde, as the playwright’s humor gave way to bitterness and self-pity. Repeatedly, Harris urged the author of The Importance of Being Earnest to continue to write. His pleas were met with excuses, indolence, and incessant requests for money. Harris’ frustration peaked when he bought an idea for a play from Wilde, then learned that Wilde had already sold the idea to several others.

  • Next to the Bible, The Pilgrim’s Progress has probably been more widely read than any other book in the English language, and rightfully so. It is considered by many critics to be the greatest allegory in any language. And to think that it was written by a jailed tinker who received very little formal education.

    This classic allegory tells of a Christian’s epic journey toward heaven and the many temptations and distractions he encounters along the way. With a burden on his back, Christian reads a book that tells him that the city in which he and his family dwell will be set ablaze. Christian flees from the City of Destruction and journeys through the Slough of Despond, the Valley of Humiliation, the Valley of the Shadow of Death, Vanity Fair, Doubting Castle, and the Delectable Mountains before finally reaching the Celestial City.

  • This blood-curdling tale of thirsty vampires continues to hold audiences spellbound more than a century after its publication.

    Summoned to assist with legal matters regarding a real estate transaction, young Englishman Jonathan Harker journeys to the dismal, dreary castle of Count Dracula in Transylvania. The fledgling solicitor is completely unprepared for what he will discover in the days to come—and the horrifying chain of events sparked by his unsettling stay with the mysterious Count.

    The Dracula mythology has inspired a vast subculture, but the story has never been better told than by Bram Stoker. He succeeds entirely in his aim to terrify. His myth is powerful because it allows evil to remain mysterious, unconquerable by strength of mind or virtuous action.

    Van Helsing’s high-thinking and scientific skill cannot resist the dreadful potency of the undead. The high virtue of Lucy can simply be drained away, as her blood is drained away, until she too joins the vampire brood. Only the old magic—a crucifix, garlic, a wooden stake—can provide effective weapons against the Count’s appalling power.

  • A classic since its first publication in 1863, The Water-Babies is the story of a little chimney sweep named Tom and his magical adventures beneath the waves. The ill-treated Tom flees his dangerous toil and his cruel master, Grimes. When he jumps into a cool stream to clean the soot off himself, he becomes a water baby, cleaner and happier than he has ever been, in a hidden fairy world. There, Tom meets haughty dragonflies, makes friends with a slow-witted lobster, and dodges hungry otters. Eventually, he meets the other water-babies and their clever rulers, Mrs. Bedonebyasyoudid and Mrs. Doasyouwouldbedoneby. After a long and arduous quest to the Other-end-of-Nowhere, young Tom achieves his heart’s desire.

  • One of the greatest prose writers and social commentators of the twentieth century, Aldous Huxley here introduces us to a delightfully cynical, comic, and severe group of artists and intellectuals engaged in the most freethinking and modern kind of talk imaginable. Poetry, occultism, ancestral history, and Italian primitive painting are just a few of the subjects competing for discussion among the amiable cast of eccentrics drawn together at Crome, an intensely English country manor.

    When the quirky group has gathered for the house party, Henry Wimbush, the owner and self-appointed historian of the estate, relates Crome's history; apocalypse is prophesied, and a young, sensitive poet suffers from unrequited love. This stunning satire of the fads and fashions of the time is not to be missed.

  • At the age of seventeen, Spurgeon became pastor to a handful of believers at Waterbeach in Cambridgeshire, meeting in what had been a dovecote. Within five years, he had become the best-known minister in London. Two years later, following the Sepoy Mutiny, he conducted a service of national humiliation in the Crystal Palace that was attended by twenty-four thousand people.

    But this volume is far from being a record of human fame and success. From his first years of childhood in rural Essex to the first years of revival in London, Spurgeon pours out his story with an enthralling fullness and color that emphasizes the center and passion of his life. Whatever Spurgeon did, he did it for Christ; and therefore, even his autobiography leads our eyes from his own works of service to the Savior behind them.

  • A master Italian sculptor, goldsmith, and writer, Benvenuto Cellini is best remembered for his magnificent autobiography. In this work, which was begun in 1558 but not published until 1730, Cellini beautifully chronicles his own flamboyant times. He tells of his adventures in Italy and France and his relations with popes, kings, and fellow artists. From Florence and Pisa to Siena and Rome, Cellini portrays a tumultuous period—the age of Galileo, Michelangelo, and de Medicis—with an artist’s eye for detail and a curmudgeon’s propensity for criticism. Cellini, according to himself, seems to have lived a very full life, and his account of his exploits, though grandiloquent and somewhat suspect, are always entertaining. Historians have considered this work as a prime example of the emergence of modern individualism during the Renaissance.

  • With swordfights and romance, adventure and treachery set against the backdrop of the French Revolution, this is the book that made Rafael Sabatini famous.

    Andr├®-Louis Moreau has good prospects as a young lawyer, but an unfair duel with the ruthlessly cruel Count de La Tour d'Azyr leaves Andr├®-Louis' best friend dead and Andr├®-Louis himself a fugitive from the king's justice. While incognito, disguised as "Scaramouche,"he becomes both a wildly popular actor and a firebrand of the Revolution. His vow to avenge his friend's murder leads him deeper into the political intrigues that surround the Revolution and to a position of power. But there are secrets to be revealed that will stun all of Paris.

    One of the best historical romances of all time, Scaramouche was a bestseller upon its original publication in the United States in 1921. Today it remains a classic of swashbuckling adventure.

  • With a wealth of fancy and an irrepressible high spirit, this beloved adventure story pokes fun at the exaggerated social and literary conventions of Cervantes’ day. Driven mad by reading too many chivalric romances, Don Quixote decks himself out in rusty armor and a cardboard helmet, determined to become a knight-errant and roam the world righting wrongs. He persuades the practical Sancho Panza to become his squire, and his inspiration on his quest is the peasant girl Aldonza, whom he idealizes as his queen of love and beauty, Dulcinea. From his first fighting encounter with a score of windmills to his climactic confrontation with a victorious enemy, Don Quixote’s feeble mind and heroic heart have earned him a place as one of the best-loved characters in fiction. A work consistently ranked among the greatest in all of literature, Don Quixote de la Mancha has inspired and influenced a host of notable writers over the past four centuries.

  • Hurlbut's Story of the Bible has its roots in the old custom of parents telling their children stories from the Bible. One of those parents who kept this custom particularly alive and meaningful was Dr. Jesse Lyman Hurlbut. Like many great works of literature, the stories that make up this book were told and retold innumerable times before being set down on paper.

    Hurlbut’s classic retelling of the Bible contains 168 stories from the Bible, each one complete in itself, while together combining to form one narrative. It is the complete Bible story, running from Genesis to Revelation, told in the language of today for both young and old alike.

  • In this tale of intrigue and adventure,Richard Hannay, the South African mining engineer and war hero first introduced inThe Thirty-Nine Steps, travels across war-torn Europe in search of a German plot—the creation of a secret weapon—and an Islamic messiah.

    He is joined by three others: John S. Blenkiron, an American who is determined to battle the Kaiser; Peter Pienaar, an old Boer Scout; and the colorful Sandy Arbuthnot, who is modeled on Lawrence of Arabia. Disguised, they travel through Germany to Constantinople and the Russian border to confront their enemies, the hideous Stumm and the evil beauty Hilda von Einem. Their success or failure could change the outcome of the First World War.

    With all the elements of a good spy novel, this tale offers a glimpse into the complex times of a tumultuous era.

  • In this comprehensive survey, William Hudson explores the forces responsible for bringing about the Renaissance, which he describes as the West's "transition from the medieval to the modern world."

    Voyages of discovery, inventions, the revival of classical learning, and the advent of science contribute to the intellectual upheavals of this creative period, which are reflected in its literature and art. Hudson focuses on the one thread of continuity which he sees as both the seed and the fruit of this exciting era: the awakening of secular humanism and the emergence of the individual. This history gives the listener a lucid, perceptive analysis of the splendid Renaissance.

  • Set against the larger-than-life backdrop of the Napoleonic wars, Hardy’s only historical novel tells of the loves and sorrows of ordinary people caught in extraordinary times.

    When an anticipated invasion brings several regiments to her small rural community, young country maid Anne Garland is courted by three men in uniform: the loyal trumpet-major John Loveday, his sailor-brother Bob, and cowardly Festus Derriman of the yeomanry cavalry.

    Founded largely on testimony from elders known to Hardy in his childhood, The Trumpet-Major offers a complex weave of historical fact and fiction that explores the subversive effects of ordinary human desires on systematized versions of history.

  • William FitzWilliam Delamere Chalmers, Lord Dawlish, is afflicted with a moneyless title. His status has earned him a beautiful fianc├®e, but the stresses of his woefully meager income are too much for young Claire to bear. She has therefore refused to marry him until his financial situation improves—significantly.

    Lord Dawlish's fortunes improve greatly, literally, when a man he barely knows dies and leaves him a million dollars. Once the initial shock subsides, he is overcome with guilt and feels he must restore at least half of the money to the rightful heirs. His attempts to do so take him to America, where a cast of colorful characters and all manner of plot twists come to play in true Wodehouse style.

    Full of Wodehouse's unrivaled humor, this novel takes listeners on a whirlwind ride across the Atlantic.