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See below for a selection of the latest books from Classic fiction (pre c 1945) category. Presented with a red border are the Classic fiction (pre c 1945) books that have been lovingly read and reviewed by the experts at Lovereading. With expert reading recommendations made by people with a passion for books and some unique features Lovereading will help you find great Classic fiction (pre c 1945) books and those from many more genres to read that will keep you inspired and entertained. And it's all free!
O. Henry was a master of the short story and one of the most popular American writers of the twentieth century. This selection of tales from across his writing career ranges from New York apartments to the cattle-lands of Texas, taking in con men, clerks, hustlers, shop assistants, tramps and tricksters. They all highlight his ironic, comic eye, his gift for evoking speech and setting, and his unique approach to life's quirks of fate. The Penguin English Library - collectable general readers' editions of the best fiction in English, from the eighteenth century to the end of the Second World War.
'A great shout of life and individuality ... an act of defiance that gladdens the soul' Guardian Lolly Willowes, so gentle and accommodating, has depths no one suspects. When she suddenly announces that she is leaving London and moving, alone, to the depths of the countryside, her overbearing relatives are horrified. But Lolly has a greater, far darker calling than family: witchcraft. 'The book I'll be pressing into people's hands forever . . . It tells the story of a woman who rejects the life that society has fixed for her in favour of freedom ... tips suddenly into extraordinary, lucid wildness' Helen McDonald 'Witty, eerie, tender ... her prose, in its simple, abrupt evocations, has something preternatural about it' John Updike
A Village Romeo and Juliet is a bitter-sweet tragedy telling the tale of two young lovers kept apart by a family feud. Inspired by the story of two real-life sweethearts and set in rural Switzerland, it evokes the overwhelming beauty of young love and nature, but is ultimately pessimistic about the possibility of such beauty surviving in the real world. Although it attracted controversy when it was first published in 1856, Keller's timeless novella has now rightfully entered the canon of world literature and is widely considered as one of the finest examples of nineteenth-century poetic realism.
Hagar's Daughter is Pauline Elizabeth Hopkins's first serial novel, published in the Boston-based Colored American Magazine (1901-1902). The novel itself features concealed and mistaken identities, dramatic revelations, and extraordinary plot twists. In Part 1, Maryland plantation heirs Hagar Sargeant and Ellis Enson fall in love, marry, and have a daughter. However, Ellis's covetous younger brother, St. Clair, claims that Hagar is of mixed-race ancestry, putting her and her infant in peril. When Ellis is presumed to be dead, St. Clair sells Hagar and her child into slavery, and they presumably die when Hagar, in despair, leaps into the Potomac River with her daughter. This is the backdrop for Part 2 (set twenty years later), which includes a high-profile murder trial, an abduction plot, and a steady succession of surprises as the young Black maid Venus Johnson assumes male clothing to solve a series of mysteries that are both current and decades-old. The appendices to this Broadview edition feature advertising for the original publication, other writing by Hopkins and her contemporaries, and reviews that situate the work within the popular literature and political culture of its time.
When Francis Raven is roused from his sleep on the eve of his birthday and confronted by the sight of a woman trying to stab him, he is unsure whether she is real or an apparition. Years later, against the wishes of his mother, he marries Alicia, a woman with a strange resemblance to the mysterious visitor, who ends up attacking him on his birthday, before vanishing from his life. Is Francis's wife a ghost, a demon or a living human being? And will the prophecy of the night-time visitation be fulfilled one day? Originally published in Household Words in 1855 as 'The Ostler', but recast and expanded two decades later, The Dream Woman is a powerfully dark and suspenseful multi-narrative novella from the master of the mystery genre and the author of some of the most enduringly popular novels of the Victorian era.
The first incarnation of this Broadview edition of Heart of Darkness appeared in 1995, the second in 1999; both were widely acclaimed, and the Goonetilleke Heart of Darkness remained for many years one of Broadview's best-selling titles. For the third edition the book has been completely revised and updated to take account of the scholarship of the most recent generation. The introduction has been extensively rewritten, and the appendices of contextual materials thoroughly overhauled.The two previous editions of the Goonetilleke Heart of Darkness included a substantial selection of documents on the history of Benin, ranging from excerpts taken from Olaudah Equiano's eighteenth-century narrative to documents concerning the Benin massacre of 1897. Those documents concerning a neighboring Bantu society were included in large part because of the paucity of known late nineteenth-century documents concerning the Congo by black Africans - or indeed by black observers of any nationality. In place of those Benin-related materials, this new edition includes substantial excerpts from George Washington Williams's Letter to Leopold II, as well as substantial excerpts from an extraordinary document not included in any other edition of Heart of Darkness (but discussed extensively in two ground-breaking twenty-first century works of scholarship, David Van Reybrouck's Congo: The Epic History of a People and Maya Jasanoff's The Dawn Watch: Joseph Conrad in a Global World): the autobiography of Disasi Makulo. Makulo grew up near the shore of the Congo River in the 1880s and early 1890s, was enslaved by notorious ivory dealer Tippu Tip, and then was taken under the wing of Henry Morgan Stanley. Makulo's account - substantial excerpts of which are here translated into English for the first time - opens an unprecedented window on life in the equatorial forest of the Congo in the late nineteenth century.
Travelling to Italy on their honeymoon, Erszi and Mihaly are ready to take in all the beauties and pleasures of the country. But when they reach Venice, it is clear that Mihaly prefers to roam around the back alleys and the canals on his own, and as they continue their journey through the Bel Paese there is a growing sense of unrest between them, until Mihaly misses the train to Rome they were due to take together. Wandering alone from city to city, with his marriage rapidly falling apart, Mihaly must confront the ghosts of his past and try to find a sense of purpose. Originally written in 1937, and here presented in a brilliant new translation by Peter V. Czipott, Antal Szerb's gently humorous and psychologically subtle exploration into the workings of a budding bourgeois marriage has been hailed as one of the great rediscovered classics of the twentieth century.
Agnes Grey was one of a trio of novels that defined the 'governess novel' in 1847 and 1848. Alongside Jane Eyre and Vanity Fair, Agnes Grey may be the most radical of the three. Agnes Grey is the younger daughter of a clergyman and his wife of modest means, cherished but also infantilized. When her father's mercantile investment goes disastrously wrong, Agnes decides to contribute to the family's financial rebuilding by working as a governess, despite her mother and sister's misgivings about her fitness for such work. Her first position is indeed trying, as the parents and children are uncouth and even cruel. Her second position is slightly more congenial, but she is still manipulated and ignored. Still, Agnes perseveres and begins to build relationships outside the family, most importantly, with a kind, empathetic young curate. As life brings more trials to Agnes and her family, we watch her persevere in her steady path of hope and determination.This Broadview Edition provides extensive historical documents on the novel's reception, the role of the governess in Victorian England, and contemporary debates about the treatment of non-human animals.
Robinson Crusoe, an adventure tale that fascinated such thinkers as John-Jacques Rousseau, Karl Marx, Virginia Woolf, and J. M. Coetze, has been an international best-seller for three hundred years. An adventure tale involving cannibals, pirates, and shipwrecks, it embodies economic, social, political, and philosophical themes that continue to be relevant today. Moreover, the notion of isolation on a deserted island and a fascination with survival continue to be central to countless popular cinema and television programs. This edition of the novel with its introduction, line notes, and full bibliographical notes provides a uniquely scholarly presentation of the novel. There has been no other edition like it.