Sylvia Plath - Johnny Panic and the Bible of Dreams
"What I fear most, I think, is the death of the imagination.... If I sit still and don't do anything, the world goes on beating like a slack drum, without meaning. We must be moving, working, making dreams to run toward; the poverty of life without dreams is too horrible to imagine."-- Sylvia Plath, from Notebooks, February 1956 Renowned for her poetry, Sylvia Plath was also a brilliant writer of prose. This collection of short stories, essays, and diary excerpts highlights her fierce concentration on craft, the vitality of her intelligence, and the yearnings of her imaginaton. Featuring an introduction by Plath's husband, the late British poet Ted Hughes, these writings also reflect themes and images she would fully realize in her poetry. Jonny Panic and the Bible of Dreams truly showcases the talent and genius of Sylvia Plath.
F. Scott Fitzgerald - Tales of the Jazz Age
Though most widely known for the novella The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald gained a major source of income as a professional writer from the sale of short stories. Over the course of his career, Fitzgerald published more than 160 stories in the period's most popular magazines. His second short fiction collection, Tales of the Jazz Age (1922), includes two masterpieces as well as several other stories from his earlier career. One, "May Day," depicts a party at a popular club in New York that becomes a night of revelry during which former soldiers and an affluent group of young people start an anti-Bolshevik demonstration that results in an attack on a leftist newspaper office. "The Diamond as Big as the Ritz" is a fantastic satire of the selfishness endemic to the wealthy and their undying pursuit to preserve that way of life. All of these stories, like his best novels, meld Fitzgerald's fascination with wealth with an awareness of a larger world, creating a subtle social critique. With his discerning eye, Fitzgerald elucidates the interactions of the young people of post-World War I America who, cut off from traditions, sought their place in the modern world amid the general hysteria of the period that inaugurated the age of jazz. This new edition reproduces in full the original collection, stories that represent a clear movement in theme and character development toward what would become The Great Gatsby. In introducing each story, Fitzgerald offers accounts of its textual history, revealing decisions about which stories to include.
Charles Bukowski - The Most Beautiful Woman in Town
‘One of those writers whom each new reader discovers with a transgressive thrill’The New Yorker ‘Funny and sharp, observant, clever with details and honest’ Times Literary Supplement This collection of short stories propels the reader into the lowlife of America’s underworld, full of drunks, bums and gamblers, where sex and violence are everywhere and the most beautiful woman in town drinks and fights. Bukowski writes with brutal honesty and sardonic humour of the things he experienced in life; poverty, hard women and chronic hangovers. Charles Bukowski was one of America’s best-known and most prolific writers. During his lifetime he published more than forty-five books of poetry and prose including the novels Post Office (1971), Factotum (1975) and Pulp (1994), all available from Virgin Books.
John Cheever - Thirteen Uncollected Stories by John Cheever
They have been called "the best kept secret of American letters" and "a virtual literary treasure trove." Originally published in the 1930s and '40s in often obscure magazines, these stories will undoubtedly surprise those readers familiar only with Cheever's post-1947 work.
Edgar Allan Poe - The complete illustrated works of Edgar Allan Poe
Here in one superb volume are tales, adventures and poems from the world's master of the mysterious - Edgar Allan Poe. Famous for his horror stories and brooding poetry, Poe is credited with the invention of the modern detective story and a distinctive style of science fiction writing. Included in this collection are: _The Complete Tales of Mystery and Imagination_ - contains all 70 of the remarkable stories of terror and fantasy that established Poe as the supreme craftsman of the short story and a great American author. _The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket_ - is Poe's only full-length work and a masterful blending of science and romance. W.H. Auden described it as 'one of the finest adventure stories ever written'. _The Raven and Other Poems_ - reflects Poe's obsession with the macabre and solitude. The stories are complemented with illustrations by Arthur Rackham, Aubrey Beardsley, Edouard Manet and others.
Thomas Pynchon - Slow Learner
Thomas Pynchon's literary career was launched not with the release of his widely acclaimed first novel, V., but with the publication in literary magazines of the five stories collected here. In his introduction to Slow Learner the author reviews his early work with disarming candor and recalls the American cultural landscape of the early post-Beat era in which the stories were written. Time magazine described this introductory essay as "Pynchon's first public gesture toward autobiography. /Synopsis from barnesandnoble.com/
Ian McEwan - First Love, Last Rites
Ian McEwan's Somerset Maugham Award-winning collection First Love, Last Rites brought him instant recognition as one of the most influential voices writing in England today. Taut, brooding, and densely atmospheric, these stories show us the ways in which murder can arise out of boredom, perversity can result from adolescent curiosity, and sheer evil might be the solution to unbearable loneliness. These tales are as horrifying as anything written by Clive Barker or Stephen King, but they are crafted with a lyricism and intensity that compel us to confront our secret kinship with the horrifying.
Ray Bradbury - The October Country
The October Country is a 1955 collection of twenty macabre short stories by Ray Bradbury. It reprints fifteen of the twenty-seven stories of his 1947 collection Dark Carnival, and adds four more of his stories previously published elsewhere.
Charles Bukowski - Tales of Ordinary Madness
In these tales of ordinary madness, Charles Bukowski ingeniously mixes high and low culture, from prostitutes and the philosophy of Kant to despair and classical music, to create his modern dystopia. Inspired by D.H. Lawrence, John Fante and Hemingway, Bukowski’s writing is passionate, extreme and relentlessly realistic. These are angry yet tender, humorous and haunting portrayals of life in the underbelly of America. Charles Bukowski was one of America’s best-known and most prolific writers. During his lifetime he published more than forty-five books of poetry and prose including the novels Post Office (1971), Factotum (1975), Women (1978), and Pulp (1994) all available from Virgin Books.
Raymond Carver - Where I'm Calling From - Selected Stories
The last story collection published during Carver's life (he died in 1988) contains most of his greatest hits from his earlier books, as well as seven stories that hadn't been collected up to that point. The breadth of the collection makes these 37 stories an extremely complete map of Carver territory, of a particular area of America and of the specific texture of the people Carver writes about -- their difficult attempts at survival in a world where happiness does not arrive wrapped up in neat packages but comes in far more peculiar parcels, if it comes at all.
Raymond Carver - Will You Please Be Quiet, Please?
With this, his first collection of stories, Raymond Carver breathed new life into the American short story. Carver shows us the humor and tragedy that dwell in the hearts of ordinary people; his stories are the classics of our time.
J. D. Salinger - Nine Stories
Including: * "A Perfect Day for Bananafish" (1948) * "Uncle Wiggily in Connecticut" (1948) * "Just Before the War with the Eskimos" (1948) * "The Laughing Man" (1949) * "Down at the Dinghy" (1949) * "For Esmé – with Love and Squalor" (1950) * "Pretty Mouth and Green My Eyes" (1951) * "De Daumier-Smith's Blue Period" (1952) * "Teddy" (1953)
Edgar Allan Poe - The Complete Tales and Poems
All of the tales by the master of the detective and the macabre story. 53 of his best-known poems plus essays and criticisms. Edgar Allan Poe self-published his first book, Tamerlane and Other Poems, in 1827. In 1830, Poe embarked on a career as a writer and began contributing reviews and essays to popular periodicals. He also wrote sketches and short fiction and in 1833 published his only completed novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket. Over the next five years he established himself as a master of the short story form through the publication of "The Fall of the House of Usher," "The Masque of the Red Death," "The Tell-tale Heart" and other well-known works. In 1841, he wrote "The Murders in the Rue Morgue," generally considered the first modern detective story. The publication of The Raven and Other Poems in 1845 brought him additional fame as a poet.
Edgar Allan Poe - Selected Tales
Since their first publication in the 1830s and 1840s, Edgar Allan Poe's extraordinary Gothic tales have established themselves as classics of horror fiction and have also created many of the conventions which still dominate the genre of detective fiction. As well as being highly enjoyable, Poe's tales are works of very real intellectual exploration. Attentive to the historical and political dimensions of these very American tales, this new selection places the most popular - 'The Fall of the House of Usher', 'The Masque of the Red Death', 'The Murders in the Rue Morgue' and 'The Purloined Letter' - alongside less well-known travel narratives, metaphysical essays and political satires.
Edgar Allan Poe - Spirits of the Dead
A unique one volume collection of all Poe's best tales and poems. Full of variety, entries include The Murders in the Rue Morgue, The Mystery of Marie Roget, The Purloined Letter - three classic detective stories - plus The Raven, one of his greatest poems. A wonderful selection of tales and poems that are representative of every genre written by Poe, from the macabre and horrifying to the humorous and purely descriptive.
J. D. Salinger - The Catcher in the Rye
Ever since it was first published in 1951, this novel has been the coming-of-age story against which all others are judged. Read and cherished by generations, the story of Holden Caulfield is truly one of America's literary treasures. Salinger's classic coming-of-age story portrays one young man's funny and poignant experiences with life, love, and sex.
Mark Twain - The Complete Short Stories of Mark Twain
For deft plotting, riotous inventiveness, unforgettable characters, and language that brilliantly captures the lively rhythms of American speech, no American writer comes close to Mark Twain. This sparkling anthology covers the entire span of Twain’s inimitable yarn-spinning, from his early broad comedy to the biting satire of his later years. Every one of his sixty stories is here: ranging from the frontier humor of “The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County,” to the bitter vision of humankind in “The Man That Corrupted Hadleyburg,” to the delightful hilarity of “Is He Living or Is He Dead?” Surging with Twain’s ebullient wit and penetrating insight into the follies of human nature, this volume is a vibrant summation of the career of–in the words of H. L. Mencken–“the father of our national literature.”