Lawrence Durrell - Justine
The Egyptian city of Alexandria once boasted the world's greatest library, home to scholars dedicated solely to the pursuit of knowledge. But on the eve of World War II, the obsessed characters in this mesmerizing novel find that their pursuits lead only to bedrooms in which each seeks to know-and possess-the other.
John Berger - G. (angol)
This novel centres on G, who seems impervious to everything around him. His interests are purely sexual, his crowning ideal fulfilment. Yet, in the end this is enough for the politics of desire to expose the criminal politics of oppression.
Iris Murdoch - A Severed Head
Martin Lynch-Gibbon believes he can possess both a beautiful wife and a delightful lover. But when his wife, Antonia, suddenly leaves him for her psychoanalyst, Martin is plunged into an intensive emotional re-education. He attempts to behave beautifully and sensibly. Then he meets a woman whose demonic splendour at first repels him and later arouses a consuming and monstrous passion. As his Medusa informs him, 'this is nothing to do with happiness'.
Craig Ferguson - American on Purpose
In American on Purpose, Craig Ferguson delivers a moving and achingly funny memoir of living the American dream as he journeys from the mean streets of Glasgow, Scotland, to the comedic promised land of Hollywood. Along the way he stumbles through several attempts to make his mark—as a punk rock musician, a construction worker, a bouncer, and, tragically, a modern dancer. To numb the pain of failure, Ferguson found comfort in drugs and alcohol, addictions that eventually led to an aborted suicide attempt. (He forgot to do it when someone offered him a glass of sherry.) But his story has a happy ending: in 1993, the washed-up Ferguson washed up in the United States. Finally sober, Ferguson landed a breakthrough part on the hit sitcom The Drew Carey Show, a success that eventually led to his role as the host of CBS's The Late Late Show. By far Ferguson's greatest triumph was his decision to become a U.S. citizen, a milestone he achieved in early 2008, just before his command performance for the president at the White House Correspondents' Association Dinner. In American on Purpose, Craig Ferguson talks a red, white, and blue streak about everything our Founding Fathers feared.
Kurt Vonnegut - God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater
Eliot Rosewater—drunk, volunteer fireman, and President of the fabulously rich Rosewater Foundation—is about to attempt a noble experiment with human nature . . . with a little help from writer Kilgore Trout. _God Bless You, Mr. Rosewater_ is Kurt Vonnegut’s funniest satire, an etched-in-acid portrayal of the greed, hypocrisy, and follies of the flesh we are all heir to.
Nick Georgano - Art of the American Automobile
The American automobile has always been more than a means of transportation. The inspired fusion of form and function has meant that for more than a century now men and women have been driving about their daily business in machines which can only be described as works of art on wheels. This is the story of how the great cars, such as Hudson, Packard, Duesenberg, Cord, Pontiac, Lincoln, Ford and Chrysler were created, and the men whose artistry shaped them. The lines of their bodies, the shapes of their fenders, hoods and trunks, the jewel-like array of colors, their emblems and their trims - every detail was the product of the creative teamwork in the hot-house atmosphere of the studios, where imagination was as important as engineering. Nick Georgano traces the history of the great designers, including Harley Earl, Bill Mitchell, John Tjaarda, Raymond Loewy, Gordon Buehrig and Bob Gregoire, and their automobiles from the beginning of the century to the present day. The book includes interviews with major figures and behind-the-scenes stories from their studios. The cars are captured in more than 250 spectacular color photographs by Nicky Wright, taken specially for this book. These are accompanied by many original designs and drawings.
Ismeretlen szerző - Conversations with Salman Rushdie
Acclaim, success, and controversy follow every one of Salman Rushdie's writings. His novels and stories have won him awards and made him both famous in the literary world and a catalyst for protests worldwide. For nearly a decade after publication of The Satanic Verses, he faced a bounty on his life. Although Rushdie has participated in a great number of interviews, many of his most revealing conversations were published in journals and newspapers throughout the globe-not only in England and the United States, but also in India, Canada, and across Europe. Conversations with Salman Rushdie, the first collection of interviews with Rushdie, brings together the best and some of the rarest of the interviews the author has granted. Though many know Rushdie for his novels, what most do not realize is the breadth of Rushdie's writing and thinking. There are many other Salman Rushdies-the travel writer, the crafter of short stories, the filmmaker, the "children's" story writer, the essayist and critic, and the unflinching commentator on contemporary culture, particularly on race and inequality. "The speaking of suppressed truths is one of the great possibilities of the novel", he tells the Third World Book Review", and it is perhaps the main reason why the novel becomes the most dangerous of art forms in all countries where people, governments, are trying to distort the truth". Rushdie talks extensively about the creative process, about his views on art and politics, and about his life before and after the fatwa. Articulate, witty, and learned, he shows the side of himself that sparks such controversy. While not necessarily seeking to provoke, Rushdie shows how controversy is ofteninseparable from the politically charged situations and issues that compel him to write. Rushdie takes risks in his writing, pushing both the novelistic form and language to its limits. "Dispense with safety nets", he says in Imaginary Homelands. These interviews reveal a man with a powerful mind, a wry sense of humor, and an unshakable commitment to justice.
Thomas Pynchon - Bleeding Edge
It is 2001 in New York City, in the lull between the collapse of the dot-com boom and the terrible events of September 11th. Silicon Alley is a ghost town, Web 1.0 is having adolescent angst, Google has yet to IPO, Microsoft is still considered the Evil Empire. There may not be quite as much money around as there was at the height of the tech bubble, but there’s no shortage of swindlers looking to grab a piece of what’s left. Maxine Tarnow is running a nice little fraud investigation business on the Upper West Side, chasing down different kinds of small-scale con artists. She used to be legally certified but her license got pulled a while back, which has actually turned out to be a blessing because now she can follow her own code of ethics—carry a Beretta, do business with sleazebags, hack into people’s bank accounts—without having too much guilt about any of it. Otherwise, just your average working mom—two boys in elementary school, an off-and-on situation with her sort of semi-ex-husband Horst, life as normal as it ever gets in the neighborhood—till Maxine starts looking into the finances of a computer-security firm and its billionaire geek CEO, whereupon things begin rapidly to jam onto the subway and head downtown. She soon finds herself mixed up with a drug runner in an art deco motorboat, a professional nose obsessed with Hitler’s aftershave, a neoliberal enforcer with footwear issues, plus elements of the Russian mob and various bloggers, hackers, code monkeys, and entrepreneurs, some of whom begin to show up mysteriously dead. Foul play, of course. With occasional excursions into the DeepWeb and out to Long Island, Thomas Pynchon, channeling his inner Jewish mother, brings us a historical romance of New York in the early days of the internet, not that distant in calendar time but galactically remote from where we’ve journeyed to since. Will perpetrators be revealed, forget about brought to justice? Will Maxine have to take the handgun out of her purse? Will she and Horst get back together? Will Jerry Seinfeld make an unscheduled guest appearance? Will accounts secular and karmic be brought into balance? Hey. Who wants to know?
Halldór Kiljan Laxness - Iceland's Bell
Sometimes grim, sometimes uproarious, and always captivating, _Iceland’s Bell_ by Nobel Laureate Halldór Laxness is at once an updating of the traditional Icelandic saga and a caustic social satire. At the close of the 17th century, Iceland is an oppressed Danish colony, suffering under extreme poverty, famine, and plague. A farmer and accused cord-thief named Jon Hreggvidsson makes a bawdy joke about the Danish king and soon after finds himself a fugitive charged with the murder of the king’s hangman. In the years that follow, the hapless but resilient rogue Hreggvidsson becomes a pawn entangled in political and personal conflicts playing out on a far grander scale. Chief among these is the star-crossed love affair between Snaefridur, known as “Iceland’s Sun,” a beautiful, headstrong young noblewoman, and Arnas Arnaeus, the king’s antiquarian, an aristocrat whose worldly manner conceals a fierce devotion to his downtrodden countrymen. As their personal struggle plays itself out on an international stage, _Iceland’s Bell_ creates a Dickensian canvas of heroism and venality, violence and tragedy, charged with narrative enchantment on every page.
Herman Melville - Bartleby, the Scrivener
By the American novelist, essayist and poet, widely esteemed as one of the most important figures in American literature and best remembered today for his masterpiece Moby-Dick (1851). His short story "Bartleby, the Scrivener" (1853) is among his most important pieces, and has been considered a precursor to Existentialist and Absurdist literature. It tells the story of a quiet, hardworking legal copyist who works in an office in the Wall Street area of New York City. One day Bartleby declines the assignment his employer gives him with the inscrutable "I would prefer not." The utterance of this remark sets off a confounding set of actions and behavior, making the unsettling character of Bartleby one of Melville's most enigmatic and unforgettable creations. _"I prefer not to," he respectfully and slowly said, and mildly disappeared._ Academics hail it as the beginning of modernism, but to readers around the world—even those daunted by Moby-Dick—Bartleby the Scrivener is simply one of the most absorbing and moving novellas ever. Set in the mid-19th century on New York City’s Wall Street, it was also, perhaps, Herman Melville's most prescient story: what if a young man caught up in the rat race of commerce finally just said, "I would prefer not to"? The tale is one of the final works of fiction published by Melville before, slipping into despair over the continuing critical dismissal of his work after Moby-Dick, he abandoned publishing fiction. The work is presented here exactly as it was originally published in Putnam's magazine—to, sadly, critical disdain.
Amy Tan - The Kitchen God's Wife
Pearl Louie Brandt has a terrible secret which she tries desperately to keep from her mother, Winne Louie. And Winnie has long kept her own secrets - about her past and the confusing circumstances of Pearl's birth. Fate intervenes in the form of Helen Kwong, Winnie's so-called sister-in-law, who believes she is dying and must unburden herself of all falsehoods before she flies off to heaven. But, unfortunately, the truth comes in many guises, depending on who is telling the tale! Thus begins a story that takes us back to Shanghai in the 1920s, through World War II, and the harrowing events that led to Winnie's arrival in America in 1949. The story is one of innocence and its loss, tragedy and survival and, most of all, the enduring qualities of hope, love and friendship.
José Saramago - The Cave
Cipriano Algor, an elderly potter, lives with his daughter Marta and her husband Marçal in a small village on the outskirts of The Center, an imposing complex of shops, apartments, and offices to which Cipriano delivers his pots and jugs every month. On one such trip, he is told not to make any more deliveries. Unwilling to give up his craft, Cipriano tries his hand at making ceramic dolls. Astonishingly, The Center places an order for hundreds, and Cipriano and Marta set to work-until the order is cancelled and the three have to move from the village into The Center. When mysterious sounds of digging emerge from beneath their apartment, Cipriano and Marçal investigate, and what they find transforms the family's life. Filled with the depth, humor, and the extraordinary philosophical richness that marks each of Saramago's novels, The Cave is one of the essential books of our time.
James Joyce - Stephen Hero (angol)
Stephen Hero is the original draft of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, which was thrown into the fire by Joyce after a domestic argument. His sister Eileen rescued most of it and the fragment was later bought for the Library of Harvard University. The draft is extremely valuable to all readers, especially students of James Joyce. It differs considerably from the final published version, and includes characters and incidents which were later cut for the sake of compression. The edition published was carefully edited with footnotes and prepared for press by Dr Theodore Spencer in such a way as to show Joyce's queries, deletions and alternative ideas, but in this country it was printed during wartime and a few literal errors of transcription passed unnoticed. The text has now been carefully collated and the mistakes corrected. After the war a further fragment of the original manuscript came to light, and was added to this edition with an explanatory note and a foreword. Stephen Hero is a remarkable literary work in its own right as well as being an important insight into the workings of Joyce's mind, for it not only throws light on the great artist's development as a writer but also presents a wonderfuly convincing transcript of life.
Paul Auster - In the Country of Last Things
Here is the story of Anna Blume, a woman who has come to an unnamed city in search of her brother. Her notebook recounts her quest in this cruel modern landscape, and through her anguished narrative, Auster presents a frightening vision of the future.
Frédéric Mistral - The Memoirs of Frédéric Mistral
Frederic Mistral was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1904- and he gave the prize money to a folklore museum he had founded in Arles. Two years later at age 27 he published MEMOIRS - which was a recollection of the life of ordinary country people in his early years, filled with delightful tales, folksongs and poetry. This illustrated edition includes the original texts of Provencal songs and verse with the author, Professor George Wickes, English versions printed 'en face'.
Michael Palin - Hemingway's Chair
Martin Sproale is an assistant postmaster obsessed with Ernest Hemingway. Martin lives in a small English village, where he studies his hero and putters about harmlessly--until an ambitious outsider, Nick Marshall, is appointed postmaster instead of Martin. Slick and self-assured, Nick steals Martin's girlfriend and decides to modernize the friendly local office by firing dedicated but elderly employees and privatizing the business. Suddenly, gentle Martin is faced with a choice: meedly accept defeat as he always has, or fight for what he believes in, as his hero, Hemingway, would. Filled with Michael Palin's trademark wit and good humor, this novel is for anyone who has ever dreamed of triumphing over the technocrats and backstabbers of the world. Hilarious, touching, and ultimately inspirational, _Hemingway's Chair_ will make readers stand up and cheer.
Mindy Kaling - Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?
Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?” Perhaps you want to know what Mindy thinks makes a great best friend (someone who will fill your prescription in the middle of the night), or what makes a great guy (one who is aware of all elderly people in any room at any time and acts accordingly), or what is the perfect amount of fame (so famous you can never get convicted of murder in a court of law), or how to maintain a trim figure (you will not find that information in these pages). If so, you’ve come to the right book, mostly! In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka.
William Golding - Rites of Passage
In the cabin of an ancient, stinking warship bound for Australia, a man writes a journal to entertain his godfather back in England. With wit and disdain he records mounting tensions on board, as an obsequious clergyman attracts the animosity of the tyrannical captain and surly crew.
Edna O'Brien - James Joyce
One of Ireland's greatest contemporary writers turns her attention to one of the country's greatest novelists from the past. Edna O'Brien depicts James Joyce as a man hammered by Church, State and family, yet from such adversities he wrote works "to bestir the hearts of men and angels". The journey begins with Joyce the arrogant youth, his lofty courtship of Nora Barnacle, their hectic sexuality, children, wanderings, debt and profligacy, and Joyce's obsession with the city of Dublin, which he would re-render through his words. Nor does Edna O'Brien spare us the anger and isolation of Joyce's later years, when he felt that the world had turned its back on him, and she asks how could it be otherwise for a man who knew that conflict is the source of all creation.
Meat Loaf - David Dalton - To Hell and Back: an Autobiography
Meat Loaf's bizarre and spectacular life story is scarcely credible. After surviving an abusive childhood, during which he was almost murdered by his alcoholic father, he starred in one of the biggest stage and film musicals ever, then went on to record the third best-selling album of all time. To Hell and Back is the story of a man who ran away from a cruel home life at 17 and starred in the legendary Rocky Horror Picture Show before turning to rock-'n'roll. His first album, Bat Out Of Hell, was considered so uncommercial by his first record label that they dropped him - only for it to go on to sell 20 million copies worldwide. He then spent the Eighties on the skids, with a severe drink and drugs problem and mounting money problems leading him to a nervous breakdown, before making a triumphant comeback with 1993's album Bat Out Of Hell II and colossal hit single 'I'd Do Anything For Love'. This is an extraordinary story and a classic rock autobiography.