An elder sister came to visit her younger sister in the country. The elder was married to a tradesman in town, the younger to a peasant in the village. As the sisters sat over their tea talking, the elder began to boast of the advantages of town life: saying how comfortably they lived there, how well they dressed, what fine clothes her children wore, what good things they ate and drank, and how she went to the theatre, promenades, and entertainments. The younger sister was piqued, and in turn disparaged the life of a tradesman and stood up for that of a peasant.
The Cry of a Century is a short story about a gifted 11 year old who supports his mother by performing great feats of memory and general knowledge every night on the stage in the Brixton Theatre of Varieties. One night after his performance, his mother does not come to pick him up from the theatre. The young Marvel catches a ride on the back of a passing motor car. But the exhausted boy drifts off to sleep and when he awakes he is far outside London at a mysterious house whose inhabitants are holding a very strange and eerie celebration.
Joseph Smith Fletcher (1863-1935) was a British journalist and author. He wrote more than 230 books on a wide variety of subjects, both fiction and nonfiction. He was one of the leading writers of detective fiction in the Victorian golden age of the short story. The eminent Doctor Clement Holford has a strange artifact in his study. A glass-fronted wall cabinet containing many rare books about poisons and a hermetically sealed glass box in which is a single white kid glove. The story behind these objects is an uncanny one.
Award winning narrator Mike Vendetti reads Edgar Allan Poe's classic tale about a man taking fatal revenge on a friend who, he believes, has insulted him. Like several of Poe's stories, and in keeping with the 19th-century fascination with the subject, the narrative revolves around a person being buried alive - in this case, by immurement.
The Last Adventure is the bizarre tale of a young rake who regularly suffers from amnesia while out having adventures. He wakes up with no memory of how he got into his current predicament, nor of what went before it. In this story, he discovers himself in the company of an attractive woman and gradually becomes aware that something very terrible has happened...something that shocks him to the very core....
Day had broken cold and grey, exceedingly cold and grey, when the man turned aside from the main Yukon trail and climbed the high earth-bank, where a dim and little-travelled trail led eastward through the fat spruce timberland. It was a steep bank, and he paused for breath at the top, excusing the act to himself by looking at his watch. It was nine o'clock. There was no sun nor hint of sun, though there was not a cloud in the sky. It was a clear day, and yet there seemed an intangible pall over the face of things, a subtle gloom that made the day dark.
Winifred Holtby (1898-1935) was an English novelist, short story writer and journalist. 'Why Herbert Killed His Mother' is the story of a perfect baby who wins a beautiful baby contest and becomes a tiny celebrity, bringing fame and fortune to his family. When Herbert grows up, he spends most of his life trying to leave 'Baby Herbert' behind him...but his mother cannot quite relinquish the glory days when she was hailed as the perfect mother.
Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) is renowned for his tales of the macabre and the supernatural. "William Wilson" is the disturbing story of a doppelganger and how he leads the eponymous narrator through a series of experiences that annoy, infuriate, and finally drive him to a violent reaction with a fatal conclusion.
Francis Marion Crawford (1854-1909) was an American writer, born in Italy and educated in the United States. He also studied at the universities of Cambridge and Heidelberg. He was a prolific writer in many fields, but it was his novels that were most popular, commanding a large following. His stories of the macabre and supernatural are very highly regarded.
'The Registered Packet' is the story of Martineau, a young man returning home by ship after a two-year absence. On the ship he meets a stranger and volunteers to deliver a small parcel for him to the nearest post office, in order that his fellow traveller might catch his train. But on arrival in Hull, Martineau inadvertently leaves his bag in the cab. He is able to track down the vehicle and find his bag again, but to his horror the packet which was entrusted to him has disappeared.
One of the most remarkable figures of the Renaissance, Michel de Montaigne was a brilliant French philosopher and statesman whose work directly influenced René Descartes, Friedrich Nietzsche, Isaac Asimov and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. He was a humanist and a sceptic, with an insatiable and wide-ranging curiosity. In 1571, on his 38th birthday, he withdrew from public life and retired to the library in his castle tower, where he assembled a body of work that is still highly relevant today.
E. F. Benson (1867-1940) is probably best known today for his sparkling, comic Lucia novels. In his own day it was his ghost stories that were his most popular works. "Naboth's Vineyard" exemplifies Benson's fine literary style and his ability to create the most frightening of supernatural and macabre tales.
Our lovable and headstrong hero D'Artagnan bounds from one brush with death to another, uncovering a plot orchestrated by Cardinal Richelieu that threatens the beautiful Queen Anne of Austria and the entire Kingdom of France. Together with his friends Athos, Porthos, and Aramis, he must stop at nothing to thwart the Cardinal's murderous schemes and rescue the love of his life in a quest that takes him to all corners of 17th Century France and beyond.
Emma is a literary classic by Jane Austen following the genteel women of Georgian-Regency England in their most cherished sport: matchmaking. Emma is spoiled, headstrong, and self-satisfied. After a couple she has introduced gets married, she greatly overestimates her own matchmaking abilities and, blind to the dangers of meddling in other people's lives, proceeds to forge ahead in her new interest despite objections.
This anthology is a thorough introduction to classic literature for those who have not yet experienced these literary masterworks. From the finding of Merlin to the death of King Arthur, follow every thrilling adventure in the Arthurian legend! For those who have known and loved these works in the past, this is an invitation to reunite with old friends in a fresh new format.
Lady Susan is a short, epistolary novel by Jane Austen. Lady Susan Vernon is a selfish, attractive, and unscrupulous woman, who tries to trap the best possible husband while maintaining a relationship with a married man. As a widow, she seeks a match for herself, as well as husband-hunting for her daughter. Lady Susan is not only beautiful but intelligent and witty; she's highly attractive to men and her suitors are always significantly younger.
'The Red Mark' tells the tale of Bloomah Beckenstein, whose family's many demands on her continually prevent her from getting to school on time. Week after week her lateness prevents her class from winning the attendance prize. But Bloomah is determined that her class should win the prize and have the honour of displaying the school banner on the classroom wall for a week. By Thursday it seems as if nothing can go wrong...but then a postcard arrives....
Edward Frederic Benson (1867-1940) was an English novelist, biographer, memoirist, archaeologist, and short story writer, best known for his evocative and beautifully narrated ghost stories. 'Royal Visitors' is a humorous story set at Trinity College, Cambridge, and tells the story of a revenge prank by the undergraduate nicknamed 'The Babe' on his tutor, Mr. Stewart, who at short notice had withdrawn a lunch invitation to dine with visiting foreign royals.
'Mr. Leggatt Leaves His Card' tells the story of a robbery. The famous and invaluable Hislip Chalice is stolen from the safe of the parish church at Meddersley, and the Reverend Francis Leggatt, Vicar of Meddersley, sets quickly out to solve the mystery before the ecclesiastical authorities get wind of it.
A mysterious sea monster, theorized by some to be a giant narwhal, is sighted by ships of several nations; an ocean liner is also damaged by the creature. The United States government finally assembles an expedition to track down and destroy the menace. Professor Pierre Aronnax, a noted French marine biologist and narrator of the story, master harpoonist Ned Land, and Aronnax's faithful assistant Conseil join the expedition.