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Classics

Classics are books that are as relevant and popular now as in their own era. Have a glance through history when you scroll through our selection of time-tested Classics. You might re-discover a forgotten gem!

Murder on the Orient Express

Murder on the Orient Express

Author: Agatha Christie Format: Paperback Release Date: 19/10/2017

Agatha Christie's most famous murder mystery, reissued with a new cover to tie in with the hugely anticipated 2017 film adaptation. Just after midnight, a snowdrift stops the Orient Express in its tracks. The luxurious train is surprisingly full for the time of the year, but by the morning it is one passenger fewer. An American tycoon lies dead in his compartment, stabbed a dozen times, his door locked from the inside. Isolated and with a killer in their midst, detective Hercule Poirot must identify the murderer - in case he or she decides to strike again.

eBooks of the Month
Postcards from No Man's Land

Postcards from No Man's Land

Author: Aidan Chambers Format: Paperback Release Date: 04/08/2016

Aidan Chambers' Carnegie-medal winning novel is about love, discovery and betrayal. Jacob, aged 17, is abroad on his own for the time, visiting his grandfather's grave at the commemoration of the Second World War Battle of Arnhem in Holland. Jacob's life-changing experiences are interwoven with the extraordinary wartime story of passion and treachery that he learns from Geertrui, whose family is linked to Jacob's in a way he never suspected.

eBooks of the Month
Brave New World

Brave New World

Author: Aldous Huxley Format: Hardback Release Date: 10/06/2021

This volume of criticism presents a variety of new essays on Aldous Huxley's Brave New World, a classic in the science fiction and dystopian genres. These essays delve into the cultural, historical, comparative and critical contexts for understanding Brave New World. For readers who are studying it for the first time, several essays survey the critical conversation regarding this work from all standard critical perspectives - social, gender, post-modern, psychological, and cultural as well as the more traditional historical and close readings. Aldous Huxley's Brave New World is (along with Evgeny Zamyatin's We and George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four) one of the founding texts of the genre of dystopian fiction. Such narratives, involving the exploration of possible dark, oppressive futures, have become one of the most popular genres of contemporary popular culture. Those narratives have recently become extremely common, even in Young Adult fiction. However, the founding texts of the genre remain compelling and continue to set its terms. Of these founding texts, Brave New World is widely acknowledged to be the one whose dystopian future most closely matches the Western world as it has actually evolved since the initial publication of the text more than eighty years ago. The essays in this volume examine the ways in which Brave New World continues to serve as an effective satirical commentary on our own reality, as well as the ways it continues to provide models for the numerous dystopian fictions that are being produced today.

eBooks of the Month
The Count of Monte Cristo

The Count of Monte Cristo

Author: Alexandre Dumas, Alexandre Dumas Format: Paperback Release Date: 27/03/2003

So incredibly entertaining, this is a novel I can read again and again. Discover adventure, betrayal, revenge and love between the pages of a drama filled belter of a read. Yes, I love this book, and it is one of my favourite classic reads. Visit our '50 Classics Everyone Should Read' collection to discover more classic titles.

The Color Purple

The Color Purple

Author: Alice Walker Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/08/2017

Set in the deep American south between the wars, this is the classic tale of Celie, a young poor black girl. Raped repeatedly by her father, she loses two children and then is married off to a man who treats her no better than a slave. She is separated from her sister Nettie and dreams of becoming like the glamorous Shug Avery, a singer and rebellious black woman who has taken charge of her own destiny. Gradually Celie discovers the support of women that enables her to leave the past behind and begin a new life. Head to our 'Black Lit Matters' list to find more must-read novels by black writers. Visit our 'Women's Words - 60+ works of feminist-minded fiction' to explore our collection of feminist-minded fiction from around the world, and across centuries.

eBooks of the Month
The Secret Garden

The Secret Garden

Author: Anchee Min Format: Paperback Release Date: 07/11/2013

One of the best loved stories in children’s literature, The Secret Garden brings nature alive in the story of how Mary Lennox, a lonely, unhappy and spoilt child is transformed by finding her way into a hidden garden. Brought to her Uncle’s house in Yorkshire after the death of her mother, Mary has no friends and no occupation. Used to being waited she is selfish and mean spirited. But when Mary unlocks the door to the garden she not only finds the wonders of nature as the flowers and trees grow and bear fruit but she also finds a friend in Dickon, the kindly gardener’s boy. How Mary, and her wheelchair bound cousin Colin are transformed by the garden remains as magical as when it was first written.

The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories

The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories

Author: Angela Carter, Helen Simpson Format: Hardback Release Date: 15/09/2016

With an introduction by Helen Simpson. From familiar fairy tales and legends - Red Riding Hood, Bluebeard, Puss in Boots, Beauty and the Beast, vampires and werewolves - Angela Carter has created an absorbing collection of dark, sensual, fantastic stories.

Black Beauty

Black Beauty

Author: Anna Sewell Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/07/2021

Black Beauty is a handsome, sweet-tempered colt with a strong spirit. As a young colt he is free to gallop in the fresh green meadows with his beloved mother, Duchess, and their kind master. But when his owners are forced to sell him, Black Beauty goes from a life of comfort and kindness to one of hard labour and cruelty. Bravely he works as hard as he can, suffering at the hands of men who treat animals badly. But Black Beauty has an unbreakable spirit and will, and is determined to survive...With a wonderful introduction by award-winning author Meg Rosoff, Black Beauty is one of the twelve best-loved classic stories being launched in the newly branded Puffin Classics series in March 2008.

eBooks of the Month
Can You Forgive Her?

Can You Forgive Her?

Author: Anthony Trollope Format: Paperback Release Date: 31/10/2018

The first novel in Anthony Trollope's Palliser series, Can You Forgive Her? traces the fortunes of three very different women in an exploration of whether social obligations and personal happiness can ever coincide. This Penguin Classics edition is edited with an introduction by Stephen Wall. Alice Vavasor cannot decide whether to marry her ambitious but violent cousin George or the upright and gentlemanly John Grey - and finds herself accepting and rejecting each of them in turn. Increasingly confused about her own feelings and unable to forgive herself for such vacillation, her situation is contrasted with that of her friend Lady Glencora - forced to marry the rising politician Plantagenet Palliser in order to prevent the worthless Burgo Fitzgerald from wasting her vast fortune. In asking his readers to pardon Alice for her transgression of the Victorian moral code, Trollope created a telling and wide-ranging account of the social world of his day. In his introduction, Stephen Wall examines Trollope's skill in depicting the strengths and weaknesses of his characters, their behaviour and inner lives. This edition also includes notes and a bibliography.

eBooks of the Month
The Way We Live Now

The Way We Live Now

Author: Anthony Trollope, Peter Merchant Format: Paperback Release Date: 05/06/1995

Not recognised as a masterpiece until years after Anthony Trollope's death (perhaps it made people flinch a little too much), The Way We Live Now is just as current and relevant as it was when it was written. Corruption, social climbing, and scandal is as prevalent today as it has always been and the main character Melmotte is truly wonderful, because he is so very dreadful. A book to make you smirk, wince, and nod. There are surely some well known people alive today that would easily step between the pages and feel right at home.  Visit our '50 Classics Everyone Should Read' collection to discover more classic titles.  

The Little Prince

The Little Prince

Author: Antoine De Saint-Exupery Format: Hardback Release Date: 28/10/2021

Antoine de Saint-Exupery's tender and magical classic fable, adapted for picture book readers for the very first time! Please - draw me a sheep. I blinked. The voice belonged to a charming little prince. The characters of Antoine de Saint-Exupery's classic tale have captured the hearts of generations of readers. Meet the pilot stranded in the desert. Meet the Little Prince who tends his beautiful rose on a planet of his own. Follow him as he embarks on a strange and wonderful journey to puzzling new planets and finally to Earth, where he discovers the nature of love. Adapted by award-winning poet Louise Greig, author of the Greenaway-medal-nominated Sweep and The Night Box, with enchanting new artwork from the critically acclaimed illustrator of The Velveteen Rabbit and Star in the Jar.

The Card A Story of Adventure in the Five Towns

The Card A Story of Adventure in the Five Towns

Author: Arnold Bennett Format: Paperback Release Date: 28/07/2016

One of fiction's greatest chancers - the story of Denry Machin and his unceasing, ingenious efforts to become a great man. Set in the raw, Victorian world of the 'Five Towns', The Card tells the extremely funny and tangled story of Denry Machin's rise from mediocrity to fame through a series of ludicrous and yet perversely successful schemes. He dances, pleads, cheats and inspires his way through life in a series of set-pieces which wonderfully evoke a now long-gone world of civic balls, seaside excursions, newspaper boys and patent chocolate remedies. As everybody said after one of his most stylish coups, Denry 'was not simply a card; he was the card.'