In Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker, novelist Jennifer Chiaverini presents a stunning account of the friendship that blossomed between Mary Todd Lincoln and her seamstress, Elizabeth “Lizzie” Keckley, a former slave who gained her professional reputation in Washington, D.C. by outfitting the city’s elite. Keckley made history by sewing for First Lady Mary Todd Lincoln within the White House, a trusted witness to many private moments between the President and his wife, two of the most compelling figures in American history.
In March 1861, Mrs. Lincoln chose Keckley from among a number of applicants to be her personal “modiste,” responsible not only for creating the First Lady’s gowns, but also for dressing Mrs. Lincoln in the beautiful attire Keckley had fashioned. The relationship between the two women quickly evolved, as Keckley was drawn into the intimate life of the Lincoln family, supporting Mary Todd Lincoln in the loss of first her son, and then her husband to the assassination that stunned the nation and the world.
Keckley saved scraps from the dozens of gowns she made for Mrs. Lincoln, eventually piecing together a tribute known as the Mary Todd Lincoln Quilt. She also saved memories, which she fashioned into a book, Behind the Scenes: Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House. Upon its publication, Keckley’s memoir created a scandal that compelled Mary Todd Lincoln to sever all ties with her, but in the decades since, Keckley’s story has languished in the archives. In this impeccably researched, engrossing novel, Chiaverini brings history to life in rich, moving style.
Mór Jókai - The Baron's Sons
The post-prandial orator was in the midst of his toast, the champagne-foam ran over the edge of his glass and trickled down his fat fingers, his lungs were expanded and his vocal chords strained to the utmost in the delivery of the well-rounded period upon which he was launched, and the blood was rushing to his head in the generous enthusiasm of the moment. In that brilliant circle of guests every man held his hand in readiness on the slender stem of his glass and waited, all attention, for the toast to come to an end in a final dazzling display of oratorical pyrotechnics. The attendants hastened to fill the half-empty glasses, and the leader of the gypsy orchestra, which was stationed at the farther end of the hall, held his violin-bow in the air, ready to fall in at the right moment with a burst of melody that should drown the clinking of glasses at the close of the toast.
Alexander Kent - Enemy in sight
Now acknowledged to be the greatest living writer of eighteenth-century naval fiction, Alexander Kent has created in Richard Bolitho a character who has countless admirers throughout the world. The Mediteranean, 1793. Despite Britain's successes, the outcome of the sea war is still in the balance. As soon as his ship's refit is completed, Captain Richard Bolitho is ordered to join the blockade off the French coast. Hyperion's new crew is still little better than a rabble. But if he is to be victorious, Bolitho must test them prematurely - and risk a court-martial if he fails...
Charles Dickens - A Tale of Two Cities (Oxford Bookworms)
Egyszerűsített olvasmány angol nyelven. Hasznos segítség a nyelvtanulásban. A kötet 4. nehézségi fokozatú, az olvasásához kb. 1400 szavas szókincs szükséges. "Oxford Bookworms Stage 4"
Leo Tolstoy - War and Peace
At a glittering society party in St Petersburg in 1805, conversations are dominated by the prospect of war. Terror swiftly engulfs the country as Napoleon's army marches on Russia, and the lives of three young people are changed for ever. The stories of quixotic Pierre, cynical Andrey and impetuous Natasha interweave with a huge cast, from aristocrats and peasants to soldiers and Napoleon himself. In War and Peace (1863-9), Tolstoy entwines grand themes - conflict and love, birth and death, free will and fate - with unforgettable scenes of nineteenth-century Russia, to create a magnificent epic of human life in all its imperfection and grandeur. Anthony Briggs's superb translation combines stirring, accessible prose with fidelity to Tolstoy's original, while Orlando Figes's afterword discusses the novel's vast scope and depiction of Russian identity. This edition also includes appendices, notes, a list of prominent characters and maps.
George Eliot - Silas Marner
Silas Marner: The Weaver of Raveloe, by Victorian novelist George Eliot, was first published in 1861. The idea for the short novel, which she described as “a story of old-fashioned village life,” came upon Eliot suddenly and interrupted her plans for the writing of another novel, Romola. After the publisher John Blackwood read some of the manuscript and told her he found it somber, Eliot replied that it was not a sad story because “it sets in a strong light the remedial influences of pure, natural human relations.” Silas Marner is a story of loss, alienation, and redemption that combines elements of fairy tale and myth with realism and humor. Set in the fictional village of Raveloe, it centers on Silas Marner, a weaver who is forced to leave his hometown in the north after being falsely accused of theft by members of his chapel. His religious faith gone, for fifteen years Marner isolates himself from the life of the village and becomes a miser. But when the gold that he cherishes is stolen, and he adopts a child whose mother has just died, his life changes dramatically for the better. Silas Marner has always been admired as one of Eliot’s best and most appealing works. Not only is it a touching story that ends, like the fairy tale, happily ever after, it also presents a realistic portrait of nineteenth-century life in a traditional English village in which the spirit of kindness and cooperation overrule petty differences.
Mark Twain - A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court
This story is both a whimsical fantasy and a social satire chock-full of brilliant Twainisms. Hank Morgan, a 19th century American-a Connecticut Yankee-by a stroke of fate is sent back into time to 6th century England and ends up in Camelot and King Arthur's Court. Although of average intelligence, he finds himself with knowledge beyond any of those in the 6th century and uses it to become the king's right hand man, and to challenge Merlin as the court magician. Astounded at the way of life in Camelot, Hank does the only thing he can think of to do: change them. In his attempt to civilize medieval Camelot he experiences many challenges and misadventures.
George R. R. Martin - A Storm of Swords: Steel and Snow
Reissued for September 2011 in B format. Split into two books for the paperback, the third volume in George R.R. Martin's superb and highly acclaimed epic fantasy A Song of Ice and Fire continues the richest, most exotic and mesmerising saga since The Lord of the Rings. The Seven Kingdoms are divided by revolt and blood feud, and winter approaches like an angry beast. Beyond the Northern borders, wildlings leave their villages to gather in the ice and stone wasteland of the Frostfangs. From there, the renegade Brother Mance Rayder will lead them South towards the Wall. Robb Stark wears his new-forged crown in the Kingdom of the North, but his defences are ranged against attack from the South, the land of House Stark's enemies the Lannisters. His sisters are trapped there, dead or likely yet to die, at the whim of the Lannister boy-king Joffrey or his depraved mother Cersei, regent of the Iron Throne. And Daenerys Stormborn will return to the land of her birth to avenge the murder of her father, the last Dragon King on the Iron Throne.
Alice Hoffman - The Dovekeepers
The lives of four sensuous, bold and remarkable women intersect in the year 70AD, in the desperate days of the siege of Masada, when supplies are dwindling and the Romans are drawing near. All are dovekeepers, and all are keepers of secrets - about who they are, where they come from, who fathered them, and whom they love. There is Yael, the assassin's daughter whose heartbreak leads to her true path in the ruins of the desert; Revka, the baker's wife who loses her dearest treasure on earth and yet finds the strength to protect her family; Aziza, the warrior's beloved who leads a secret life not even those closest to her could imagine; and Marit, beautiful witch of Moab, a woman as loyal as she is dangerous.
Tracy Chevalier - The Last Runaway
In New York Times bestselling author Tracy Chevalier's newest historical saga, she introduces Honor Bright, a modest English Quaker who moves to Ohio in 1850, only to find herself alienated and alone in a strange land. Sick from the moment she leaves England, and fleeing personal disappointment, she is forced by family tragedy to rely on strangers in a harsh, unfamiliar landscape. Nineteenth-century America is practical, precarious, and unsentimental, and scarred by the continuing injustice of slavery. In her new home Honor discovers that principles count for little, even within a religious community meant to be committed to human equality. However, drawn into the clandestine activities of the Underground Railroad, a network helping runaway slaves escape to freedom, Honor befriends two surprising women who embody the remarkable power of defiance. Eventually she must decide if she too can act on what she believes in, whatever the personal costs. A powerful journey brimming with color and drama, The Last Runaway is Tracy Chevalier's vivid engagement with an iconic part of American history.
Stephen Crane - The Red Badge of Courage
Stephen Crane's American Civil War masterpiece The Red Badge of Courage is one of the greatest of all war novels. Two days of fighting on a woodland battlefield are focused through the excited senses of a raw Union recruit, Henry Fleming. Dreaming ofheroism, but shamefully discovering his own mortal fear of danger and death - and of fear itself - he flees from his first encounter with Confederate troops. But when he is drawn back into the battle he wins by accident his 'red badge', the wound that signifies initiation into manhood and possession of courage to join the world of men. The Red Badge of Courage conveys with intense immediacy the sensations, colours, fever and chaos of battle. It concentrates on the experience of an individual soldier, and it is one of the few novels written before this century that meets our modern sense of the realities of mass warfare.
Bernard Cornwell - Sword Song
'Cornwell's narration is quite masterly and supremely well-researched' OBSERVER The year is 885, and England is at peace, divided between the Danish kingdom to the north and Alfred's Wessex in the south. But trouble stirs, a dead man has risen and new Vikings have arrived to occupy London. It is a dangerous time, and it falls to Uhtred, half Saxon, half Dane, a man feared and respected the length and breadth of Britain, to expel the Viking raiders and take control of London for Alfred. His uncertain loyalties must now decide England's future. A gripping tale of love, rivalry and violence, Sword Song tells the story of England's making. ' y.ere is Alfred's world restored - impeccably researched and illuminated with the colour and-passion of a master storyteller' JUSTIN POL HOR OF ALFR
George R. R. Martin - A Dance With Dragons: After the Feast
The fifth volume, part two of A Song of Ice and Fire, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. GAME OF THRONES is now a major Sky Atlantic TV series from HBO, featuring a stellar cast. The future of the Seven Kingdoms hangs in the balance. In King's Landing the Queen Regent, Cersei Lannister, awaits trial, abandoned by all those she trusted; while in the eastern city of Yunkai her brother Tyrion has been sold as a slave. From the Wall, having left his wife and the Red Priestess Melisandre under the protection of Jon Snow, Stannis Baratheon marches south to confront the Boltons at Winterfell. But beyond the Wall the wildling armies are massing for an assault! On all sides bitter conflicts are reigniting, played out by a grand cast of outlaws and priests, soldiers and skinchangers, nobles and slaves. The tides of destiny will inevitably lead to the greatest dance of all.
George R. R. Martin - A Dance With Dragons: Dreams and Dust
The fifth volume, part one of A Song of Ice and Fire, the greatest fantasy epic of the modern age. GAME OF THRONES is now a major Sky Atlantic TV series from HBO, featuring a stellar cast. In the aftermath of a colossal battle, new threats are emerging from every direction. Tyrion Lannister, having killed his father, and wrongfully accused of killing his nephew, King Joffrey, has escaped from King's Landing with a price on his head. To the north lies the great Wall of ice and stone -- a structure only as strong as those guarding it. Eddard Stark's bastard son Jon Snow has been elected 998th Lord Commander of the Night's Watch. But Jon has enemies both inside and beyond the Wall. And in the east Daenerys Targaryen struggles to hold a city built on dreams and dust.
Khaled Hosseini - The Kite Runner
Twelve-year-old Amir is desperate to win the approval of his father and resolves to win the local kite-fighting tournament, to prove that he has the makings of a man. His loyal friend Hassan promises to help him - for he always helps Amir - but this is 1970s Afghanistan and Hassan is merely a low-caste servant who is jeered at in the street, although Amir still feels jealous of his natural courage and the place he holds in his father's heart. But neither of the boys could foresee what would happen to Hassan on the afternoon of the tournament, which was to shatter their lives. After the Russians invade and the family is forced to flee to America, Amir realises that one day he must return, to find the one thing that his new world cannot grant him: redemption.
David Benioff - City of Thieves
As wise and funny as it is thrilling and original - the story of two young men on an impossible adventure. A writer visits his retired grandparents in Florida to document their experience during the infamous siege of Leningrad. His grandmother won't talk about it, but his grandfather reluctantly consents. The result is the captivating odyssey of two young men trying to survive against desperate odds. Lev Beniov considers himself built for deprivation. He's small, smart, and insecure, a Jewish virgin too young for the army, who spends his nights working as a volunteer firefighter with friends from his building. When a dead German paratrooper lands in his street, Lev is caught looting the body and dragged to jail, fearing for his life. He shares his cell with the charismatic and grandiose Kolya, a handsome young soldier arrested on desertion charges. Instead of the standard bullet in the back of the head, Lev and Kolya are given a shot at saving their own lives by complying with an outrageous directive: secure a dozen eggs for a powerful colonel to use in his daughter's wedding cake. In a city cut off from all supplies and suffering unbelievable deprivation, Lev and Kolya embark on a hunt to find the impossible. A search that takes them through the dire lawlessness of Leningrad and the devastated surrounding countryside creates an unlikely bond between this earnest, lust-filled teenager and an endearing lothario with the gifts of a conman. Set within the monumental events of history, _City of Thieves_ is an intimate coming-of-age tale with an utterly contemporary feel for how boys become men.
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.
C. S. Forester - The Gun
Abandoned by the retreating Spanish army during the Peninsular War, the gun is an eighteen pounder bronze cannon, thirteen feet long, weighing three tons. When a group of Spanish partisans come across it two years later they see in it a chance for victory against the French - but first they must haul it across the mountains with nothing but a handful of donkeys and half-starved oxen. On its epic journey the cannon begins to gain almost mystical significance. For, with the gun, they are no longer a band of Spanish irregulars, they are an army able to take on the cream of Napoleon's troops...
Libba Bray - The Diviners
It's 1920s New York City. It's flappers and Follies, jazz and gin. It's after the war but before the depression. And for certain group of bright young things it's the opportunity to party like never before. For Evie O'Neill, it's escape. She's never fit in in small town Ohio and when she causes yet another scandal, she's shipped off to stay with an uncle in the big city. But far from being exile, this is exactly what she's always wanted: the chance to show how thoroughly modern and incredibly daring she can be. But New York City isn't about just jazz babies and follies girls. It has a darker side. Young women are being murdered across the city. And these aren't crimes of passion. They're gruesome. They're planned. They bear a strange resemblance to an obscure group of tarot cards. And the New York City police can't solve them alone. Evie wasn't just escaping the stifling life of Ohio, she was running from the knowledge of what she could do. She has a secret. A mysterious power that could help catch the killer - if he doesn't catch her first.