After reading Christmas Carol, the notoriously reculsive Thomas Carlyle was “seized with a perfect convulsion of hospitality” and threw not one but two Christmas dinner parties. The impact of the story may not always have been so dramatic but, along with Dickens other Christmas writings, it has had a lasting and significant influence upon our ideas about the Christmas spirit, and about the season as a time for celebration, charity, and memory.
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George Eliot - Middlemarch (angol)
Often called the greatest nineteenth-century British novelist, George Eliot (the pen name of Mary Ann Evans) created in Middlemarch a vast panorama of life in a provincial Midlands town. At the story’s center stands the intellectual and idealistic Dorothea Brooke—a character who in many ways resembles Eliot herself. But the very qualities that set Dorotheaapart from the materialistic, mean-spirited society around her also lead her into a disastrous marriage with a man she mistakes for her soul mate. In a parallel story, young doctor Tertius Lydgate, who is equally idealistic, falls in love with the pretty but vain and superficial Rosamund Vincy, whom he marries to his ruin. Eliot surrounds her main figures with a gallery of characters drawn from every social class, from laborers and shopkeepers to the rising middle class to members of the wealthy, landed gentry. Together they form an extraordinarily rich and precisely detailed portrait of English provincial life in the 1830s. But Dorothea’s and Lydgate’s struggles to retain their moral integrity in the midst of temptation and tragedy remind us that their world is very much like our own. Strikingly modern in its painful ironies and psychological insight, Middlemarch was pivotal in the shaping of twentieth-century literary realism.
Charles Dickens - Hard Times
Coketown is dominated by the figure of Mr Thomas Gradgrind, school headmaster and model of Utilitarian success. Feeding both his pupils and family with facts, he bans fancy and wonder from any young minds. As a consequence his obedient daughter Louisa marries the loveless businessman and ‘bully of humanity’ Mr Bounderby, and his son Tom rebels to become embroiled in gambling and robbery. And, as their fortunes cross with those of free-spirited circus girl Sissy Jupe and victimized weaver Stephen Blackpool, Gradgrind is eventually forced to recognize the value of the human heart in an age of materialism and machinery. This edition of Hard Times is based on the text of the first volume publication of 1854. Kate Flint’s introduction sheds light on the frequently overlooked character interplay in Dickens’s great critique of Victorian industrial society.
Jane Austen - Pride and Prejudice
The Collector's Library in Colour takes the favourite illustrated titles of The Collector's Library and presents them in full colour. Jane Austen's best-loved novel is a memorable story about the inaccuracy of first impressions, about the power of reason, and above all about the strange dynamics of human relationships and emotions. Here, where Hugh Thomson's delightful period illustrations were originally black-and-white, they have been sensitively coloured by Barbara Frith, one of Britain 's most accomplished colourists. A tour de force of wit and sparkling dialogue, Pride and Prejudice shows how the headstrong Elizabeth Bennett and the aristocratic Mr Darcy must have their pride humbled and their prejudices dissolved before they can acknowledge their love for each other." With an Afterword by Henry Hitchings.
Charles Dickens - A Christmas Carol
This engrossing tale relates Ebenezer Scrooge's ghostly journeys through Christmases past, present, and future and his ultimate transformation from a harsh and grasping old miser to a charitable and compassionate human being. A perennial classic that has become as much a part of the holiday season as holly, mistletoe, and evergreen wreaths.
Charles Dickens - Hard Times (Oxford Dominoes)
Thomas Gradgrind believes that facts and money are more important than feelings and imagination. After Cissy Jupe a circus child is left alone in the world, Gradgrind takes her into his house, looking after her and teaching her facts with his own children Tom and Louisa. Some years later the Gradgrind family meets hard times. Louisa becomes a prisoner in a loveless marriage, and Tom has problems at work. In the end, Thomas Gradgrind learns the importance of feelings and imagination.
Charles Dickens - David Copperfield (angol)
'Please, Mr Murdstone! Don't beat me! I've tried to team my lessons, really I have, sir!' sobs David. Although he is only eight years old, Mr Murdstone does beat him, and David is so frightened that he bites his cruel stepfather's hand. For that, he is kept locked in his room for five days and nights, and nobody is allowed to speak to him. As David grows up, he learns that life is full of trouble and misery and cruelty. But he also finds laughter and kindness, trust and friendship... and love.
Jane Austen - Mansfield Park
Jane Austen views the social mores of her day through Fanny Price, a shy and sweet-tempered girl adopted by wealthy relations. An outsider looking in on an unfamiliar and often inhospitable world, Fanny eventually wins the affection of her benefactors, endearing herself to the Bertram family and the audience alike.
Jane Austen - Northanger Abbey
Harper Collins is proud to present its new range of best-loved, essential classics. 'Northanger Abbey! These were thrilling words, and wound up Catherine's feelings to the highest point of ecstasy.' Considered the most light-hearted and satirical of Austen's novels, Northanger Abbey tells the story of an unlikely young heroine Catherine Morland. While staying in Bath, Catherine meets Henry Tilney and his sister Eleanor who invite her to their family estate, Northanger Abbey. A fan of Gothic Romance novels, naive Catherine is soon letting her imagination run wild in the atmospheric abbey, fuelled by her friendship with the vivacious Isabella Thorpe. It is only when the realities of life set in around her that Catherine's fantastical world is shattered. A coming-of-age novel, Austen expertly parodies the Gothic romance novels of her time and reveals much about her unsentimental view of love and marriage in the eighteenth century.
Jane Austen - Persuasion
At twenty-seven, Anne Elliot is no longer young and has few romantic prospects. Eight years earlier, she had been persuaded by her friend Lady Russell to break off her engagement to Frederick Wentworth, a handsome naval captain with neither fortune nor rank. What happens when they encounter each other again is movingly told in Jane Austen's last completed novel. Set in the fashionable societies of Lyme Regis and Bath, "Persuasion" is a brilliant satire of vanity and pretension, but, above all, it is a love story tinged with the heartache of missed opportunities.
Jane Austen - Sense and Sensibility
"I could hardly keep my seat." Spirited and impulsive, Marianne Dashwood is the complete opposite to her controlled and sensible sister, Elinor. When it comes to matters of the heart, Marianne is passionate and romantic and soon falls for the charming, but unreliable Mr Willoughby. Elinor, in contrast, copes stoically with the news that her love, Edward Ferrars is promised to another. It is through their shared experiences of love that both sisters come to learn that the key to a successful match comes from finding the perfect mixture of rationality and feeling.
William Makepeace Thackeray - Vanity Fair
"Ah! Vanitas Vanitatum! Which of us is happy in this world? Which of us has his desire? or, having it, is satisfied?" —Vanity Fair A bewitching beauty who bends men to her will using charm, sex, and guile. An awkward man who remains loyal to his friends, even when those friends don't deserve his affection. A mother who cannot get over the loss of her husband and devotes her life to her child. Though written in 1847-48, William Makepeace Thackeray's Vanity Fair is peopled by types who remain familiar today. The novel's early nineteenth-century setting immerses us in a strange world of social stratification, moral strictures, and self-conscious sentiment. Yet its characters—from dissolute playboys and self-important heirs to judgmental aunts and finicky gourmands—are instantly recognizable. None of the novel's characters is more memorable than Becky Sharp, one of Victorian literature's most remarkable creations. While Thackeray's narrator takes pains to expose Becky's subterfuges and to insinuate sexual immorality and even murder, we cannot help but admire her intelligence and élan. Alone among the novel's major characters, she is not content to live out the life she was born into—that of a governess. Lacking money and family, she uses the only tools at her disposal, sex and cunning, to seek advancement in the world. Her success in gaining entrée to society's most exclusive circles, despite the hostility of her husband's family and a chronic lack of cash, is a testament to Becky's audacity and brilliance, her ultimate downfall notwithstanding. Thackeray juxtaposes Becky's story with that of Amelia Osborne, the naïve, sentimental daughter of a wealthy merchant who goes bankrupt partway through the book. Her artless modesty and devotion to her first love, the good-for-nothing George Osborne, contrast sharply with Becky's amoral machinations and social climbing. Yet as a paragon of womanhood, Amelia also falls short. Her passivity, her maudlin illusions, and her selfish exploitation of William Dobbin, a man who devotes his life to her, make her less than completely sympathetic; near the end of the book, Dobbin himself declares that he has wasted his life in pursuit of someone who is not worthy. Dobbin alone comes through the book with dignity. He is, as Thackeray declares, a true gentleman. But in the end, having achieved what he long sought—marriage to Amelia—Dobbin too is disillusioned, fonder of his daughter and his History of the Punjab than he is of his wife, though he would never admit as much. Thackeray interweaves the stories of these three main characters into an exuberant narrative that's chockablock with indelible secondary characters and cynical aperçus that illuminate all manner of human folly. His withering gaze lands on both lords and ladies, exposing the mean-spirited pretensions and craving for distinction that permeate the whole social world. By placing the social skirmishes and family clashes of his characters against the backdrop of the Napoleonic Wars, Vanity Fair invites us to contemplate the pervasiveness of human strife—and the damage that our egotism and self-delusion do every day.
Charlotte Brontë - Jane Eyre (angol)
The orphaned Jane Eyre has emerged a fiercely independent young woman. As governess at Thornfield Hall, she’s found her first real home—though it stands in the shadow of the estate’s master, Mr. Rochester, and its haunted halls ring with maniacal laughter. For even the grandest houses have secrets. As much a story about defying convention as it is about coming-of-age, Jane Eyre remains one of the most beloved novels in the English language. Both Gothic and Victorian in its influence and scope, it captures one woman’s determination to live life on her own terms—choosing courage over fear, while finding power in love and compassion. Revised edition: Previously published as Jane Eyre, this edition of Jane Eyre (AmazonClassics Edition) includes editorial revisions.
Charles Dickens - David Copperfield (német)
Das England der beginnenden Industrialisierung: harsche Erziehungseinrichtungen, Schuldnergefängnisse. Es schlägt Mitternacht an einem Freitag, da mischt sich unter die Glockenschläge der Schrei des Neugeborenen David Copperfield. Kein gutes Omen. Doch Charles Dickens versteht es, mit überbordendem Realismus und scharfer Zunge, mit Gefühl und Witz, nicht nur den Leidensweg des Jungen zu schildern, sondern ein buntes Regiment an Figuren vorzuführen, die in ihrer Verbohrtheit oder Herzensgüte noch lange lebendig bleiben, nachdem man das Buch zugeschlagen hat.
Lewis Carroll - Alice's Adventures in Wonderland / Through the Looking-Glass
This edition contains _Alice's Adventures in Wonderland_ and its sequel _Through the Looking-Glass_. It is illustrated throughout by Sir John Tenniel, whose drawings for the books add so much to the enjoyment of them. Tweedledum and Tweedledee, the Mad Hatter, the Cheshire Cat, the Red Queen and the White Rabbit all make their appearances, and are now familiar figures in writing, conversation and idiom. So too, are Carroll's delightful verses such as The Walrus and the Carpenter and the inspired jargon of that masterly Wordsworthian parody, The Jabberwocky.
Charles Dickens - Karácsonyi ének
A szőrösszívű Scrooge úr, a -zaklató, szipolyozó, zsugori, kapzsi vén bűnös-, akinek a karácsony is csak olyan nap, mint a többi, dühvel és megvetéssel nézi az emberek ünnepi készülődését. Kidobja a karácsonyi énekeket kántáló koldus kisfiút és a szegényeknek gyűjtő úriembert egyaránt, kiszipolyozott írnokát is felmondással fenyegeti. Este, hazatérve magányos házába jelenést lát: meglátogatja Marley, rég halott üzlettársa, s bejelenti három további szellem érkezését. Az első a régi karácsonyok szelleme, aki végigvezeti Scrooge urat saját hajdani életén, s elfelejtett, fájó emlékeket elevenít föl benne. A második az új karácsony szelleme, aki felnyitja Scrooge szemét a körülötte élők sorsára, nyomorúságára és vidámságára, szenvedéseikre és emberségükre. Végül a harmadik, a jövő szelleme megmutatja neki saját, ijesztő, magányos halálát. Scrooge urat a jelenések új emberré teszik: más szemmel kezdi látni a világot, karácsonyi pulykát küld írnoka családjának, ellátogat megvetett unokaöccséhez, s jó barát, jó gazda, jó szomszéd válik belőle. Dickensnek ez az 1843-ban írt kis tanmeséje már az érett mester keze nyomát viseli magán: remekmű, melynek nem hervad a népszerűsége sem.
F. Scott Fitzgerald - The Great Gatsby
The exemplary novel of the Jazz Age, F. Scott Fitzgeralds' third book, The Great Gatsby (1925), stands as the supreme achievement of his career. T. S. Eliot read it three times and saw it as the "first step" American fiction had taken since Henry James; H. L. Mencken praised "the charm and beauty of the writing," as well as Fitzgerald's sharp social sense; and Thomas Wolfe hailed it as Fitzgerald's "best work" thus far. The story of the fabulously wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when, The New York Times remarked, "gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession," it is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s that resonates with the power of myth. A novel of lyrical beauty yet brutal realism, of magic, romance, and mysticism, The Great Gatsby is one of the great classics of twentieth-century literature.
Charles Dickens - Copperfield Dávid
Charles Dickens, a XIX. századi angol realista regényirodalom legjelentősebb alakja. 1850-ben jelent meg Copperfield Dávid című regénye, melynek központi témája a szegénység és a kiszolgáltatottság. Hőse egy kisfiú, az ő szenvedésein keresztül tárul fel a felnőtt-társadalom gonosz, embertelen világa. Az író alakjai sorsát részvéttel, felfokozott érzelmekkel, őszinte és mély humanizmussal, humorral ábrázolja. Az enciklopédikus igényű nagy összefoglalás az alkotó legjellemzőbb látomása a világról, egyben nem is túlságosan burkolt önéletrajz.
Victor Hugo - Les Misérables (angol)
Hugo's classic tale set against the backdrop of political upheaval in 19th-century France retains its timeless appeal in this notably condensed rendition of the struggles of former convict Jean Valjean. While the abridgment inevitably cuts many of the intricate subplots and minor characters who enrich Hugo's vast tome, this suspenseful central plot tracing Valjean's endeavor to emerge from desperate circumstances while being pursued by the duty-obsessed Inspector Javert remains intact and comprehensible to listeners. The principal characters retain their epic proportions, and the major themes of redemption through good works and the importance of authentic charity are undiminished. Narrator Michael York adds vigor and distinct characterizations to the broad cast of characters in this fittingly dramatic performance. Suitable for collections that do not already contain one of the many audio versions of this work
Sir Arthur Conan Doyle - Sherlock Holmes - The Complete Illustrated Short Stories
This handsome collection contains all fifty-six short stories written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle about the world's most famous detective, Sherlock Holmes. The stories were originally published to widespread acclaim in The Strand Magazine, London's most celebrated illustrated periodical, between 1891 and 1927; they are still just as popular today. These fascinating tales of Holmes's deductive genius will enthrall every armchair sleuth but will also fascinate those readers who simply enjoy an exciting adventure mystery. This collected edition of the Sherlock Holmes short stories is enhanced by original illustrations from The Strand Magazine.