The first volume of Will Durant's Pulitzer Prize-winning series, Our Oriental Heritage: The Story of Civilization, Volume I chronicles the early history of Egypt, the Middle East, and Asia.
Among the autobiographies of great military figures, Ulysses S. Grant’s is certainly one of the finest, and it is arguably the most notable literary achievement of any American president: a lucid, compelling, and brutally honest chronicle of triumph and failure. From his frontier boyhood, to his heroics in battle, to the grinding poverty from which the Civil War ironically rescued him, these memoirs are a mesmerizing, deeply moving account of a brilliant man told with great courage.
"What makes a great commander?? Read this book"
One of the great innovators in American letters, Walt Whitman created a daringly new kind of poetry that became a major force in world literature. Leaves of Grass is his masterpiece, written in a pure, uninhibited style, combining sensual and mystical sensibilities. Its bold, joyous voice, its expansive optimism, and its transcendental vision made it uniquely American.
In the early spring of 1845, Henry David Thoreau built and lived in a cabin near the shore of Walden Pond in rural Massachusetts. For the next two years, he enacted his own Transcendentalist experiment, living a simple life based on self-reliance, individualism, and harmony with nature. The journal he kept at that time evolved into his masterwork, Walden, an eloquent expression of a uniquely American philosophy.
William Stoner is born at the end of the 19th century into a dirt-poor Missouri farming family. Sent to the state university to study agronomy, he instead falls in love with English literature and embraces a scholar's life, far different from the hardscrabble existence he has known. And yet as the years pass, Stoner encounters a succession of disappointments.
The Origin of Species sold out on the first day of its publication in 1859. It is the major book of the 19th century and one of the most readable and accessible of the great revolutionary works of the scientific imagination. Though, in fact, little read, most people know what it says—at least they think they do. The Origin of Species was the first mature and persuasive work to explain how species change through the process of natural selection. Upon its publication, the book began to transform attitudes about society and religion.
"Best way to read the classic!"
These stories display Twain's place in American letters as a master writer in the authentic native idiom. He was exuberant and irreverent, but underlying the humor was a vigorous desire for social justice and a pervasive equalitarian attitude.
"Great but incomplete"
Franklin’s Autobiography, one of the most regarded works in early American literature, began as a private collection of anecdotes for his son, but was soon transformed from reflective personal journaling into a work of national history. Filled with the inimitable nuances & wit of the inventor, philosopher, scientist and statesman, this engaging narration of Benjamin Franklin’s classic is as certain to delight modern readers as it did with his original audience.
"Wisely written and mesmerizingly read"
A mere 18 years of age when his uncle, Julius Caesar, is murdered, Octavius Caesar prematurely inherits rule of the Roman Republic. Surrounded by men who are jockeying for power—Cicero, Brutus, Cassius, and Mark Antony—young Octavius must work against the powerful Roman political machinations to claim his destiny as first Roman emperor. Sprung from meticulous research and the pen of a true poet, Augustus tells the story of one man’s dream to liberate a corrupt Rome.
"The son of Caesar calls to you."
A collection of letters Mark Twain wrote for a newspaper publication - from a long, turbulent journey to the island to his encounters with the islanders and the myriad Englishmen who have taken up residence on the island.
Thomas Paine's The Age of Reason; Being an Investigation of True and Fabulous Theology, published in three parts from 1794, was a best seller in America, where it caused a short-lived deistic revival. Promoting a creator-God while advocating reason in the place of revelation, Paine’s controversial pamphlet caused his native British audience, fearing the results of the French Revolution, to receive it with more hostility than their American counterparts.
"Amazed by the energy, originality & bravery"
First published in 1873, The Gilded Age is both a biting satire and a revealing portrait of post-Civil War America - an age of corruption when crooked land speculators, ruthless bankers, and dishonest politicians voraciously took advantage of the nation's peacetime optimism. With his characteristic wit and perception, Mark Twain and his collaborator, Charles Dudley Warner, attack the greed, lust, and naiveté of their own time in a work that endures as a valuable social document and one of America's most important satirical novels.
In July 1883, just a few days after the 20th anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, a group of editors at the Century magazine engaged in a lively argument: Which Civil War battle was the bloodiest battle of them all? One claimed it was Chickamauga, another Cold Harbor. The argument inspired a brainstorm: Why not let the magazine’s 125,000 readers in on the conversation by offering “a series of papers on some of the great battles of the war, to be written by officers in command on both sides.”
"The war as seen by the men who were there."
The Innocents Abroad is a keenly observant, politically incorrect and often hilarious narration of the author’s cruise to the Holy Land aboard a retired Civil War ship. First published in 1869 and the bestselling of Twain’s works in his lifetime, The Innocents Abroad will delight listeners with the celebrated author’s musings on historic landmarks, cultural differences and silly travelling companions.
"A step in the right direction."
Working at a plantation in his youth, Joel Chandler Harris found that much of his shyness disappeared in the slave QTLYters, and his background as the illegitimate son of an Irish immigrant helped fuse a close bond with the slaves. The language of his new friends and the African-American animal tales they shared later became the inspiration for Joel’s beloved Uncle Remus stories.
"Not a PC Telling"
Published together for the first time are three of Ayn Rand's compelling stage plays. The courtroom drama Night of January 16th, a 1935 Broadway success famous for leaving the verdict to the audience, is presented here in its definitive, final revised text - a superb dramatization of Rand's vision of human strengths and weaknesses.
Pinocchio, The Tale of a Puppet is a novel for children by Carlo Collodi is about the mischievous adventures of Pinocchio, an animated marionette, and his poor father, woodcarver Geppetto. It is considered a classic of children's literature and has spawned many derivative works of art. This is not the story we've seen in film, but the original version - full of harrowing adventures faced by Pinocchio.
"To Calvin H. Higbie, of California, an honest man, a genial comrade and a steadfast friend," this book is inscribed by the author, "in memory of the curious time when we two were millionaires for ten days." So the witty Mark Twain dedicates his second travelogue and charming SEMI-sequel to The Innocents Abroad.
Originally published in 1907, The Shepherd of the Hills is Harold Bell Wright's most famous work. In The Shepherd of the Hills, Wright spins a tale of universal truths across the years to the modern-day reader. His Eden in the Ozarks has a bountiful share of life's enchantments, but is not without its serpents.
In his groundbreaking and controversial book The DIM Hypothesis, Dr. Leonard Peikoff casts a penetrating new light on the process of human thought and thereby on Western culture and history. In this far-reaching study, Peikoff identifies the three methods people use to integrate concrete data into a whole, as when connecting diverse experiments by a scientific theory, separate laws into a constitution, or single events into a story.