It tells of the love affair between Anna and Count Vronsky. Tragedy unfolds as Anna rejects her passionless marriage and must endure the hypocrisies of society. Set against the backdrop of nineteenth-century Russia, faith is challenged, bonds are broken, love dies and is reborn.
Middlemarch is considered one of the masterpieces of English fiction. Published in 1874, it is the seventh and penultimate novel by George Eliot. It pursues a number of underlying themes, including the status of women, the nature of marriage, idealism and self-interest, religion and hypocrisy, political reform, and education.
"I Loved It!"
Released in 1912, it tells the story of an expedition to a plateau in the Amazon basin where prehistoric animals still survive. The character of Professor Challenger was introduced in this book. The novel also describes a war between Native Americans and a vicious tribe of ape-like creatures.
"Fun book, but characters are muddled"
The story tells of Jim, a young, good-looking, genial, and naive water-clerk on the Patna, a cargo ship plying Asian waters. One night, when the ship collides with an obstacle and begins to sink, acting on impulse, Jim jumps overboard and lands in a lifeboat, which happens to be bearing the unscrupulous captain and his cohorts away from the disaster.
"Great novel, stunning narration."
The story, composed entirely of letters written by the various characters to each other, tells of the Marquise de Merteuil and the Vicomte de Valmont, two rivals who use sex as a weapon to humiliate and degrade others, uncaring of those who face social ruin or whose hearts are broken. It depicts a decadent and corrupt aristocracy exposing the perversions of the so-called Ancien Regime. The relevance of this grew due to the ensuing the French Revolution.
The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman is a novel by Laurence Sterne considered one of the greatest comic novels in English. It was published in nine volumes, the first two appearing in 1759, and seven others following over the next 10 years. Laurence Sterne (1713 - 1768) was an Irish-born English novelist and an Anglican clergyman.
"A classic and a hoot"
First published in 1883, Treasure Island remains one of Robert Louis Stevenson's best-known and best-loved works.
A classic coming of age adventure, featuring buried treasure, treacherous pirates, and the eponymous Long John Silver, Treasure Island tells the enthralling story of Jim Hawkins, a young cabin boy, who sets sail on an 18th century voyage in search of a pirate's buried gold.
"Fantastic story, unprofessional recording"
The Count of Monte Cristo is an adventure novel by Alexandre Dumas.
Published in 1844, it is often considered one of the great thrillers of all time and, along with The Three Musketeers, Dumas' most popular work.
Falsely accused of treason, the young sailor Edmund Dantes is arrested on his wedding day and imprisoned in the island fortress of the Chateau d'If. After staging a dramatic escape, he sets out to discover the treasure of Monte Cristo and catch up with his enemies.
The Brothers Karamazov is the final novel by the Russian author Fyodor Dostoevsky and is generally considered the culmination of his life's work. Published in November 1880, Dostoevsky spent nearly two years writing the novel set in 19th-century Russia. Fydor Karamazov, a mean and disreputable landowner, has three sons, Dmitry, a profligate army officer; Ivan, a writer with revolutionary ideas; and Alexey, a religious novice.
"The Brothers Karamozov"
Late one night, a drawing teacher meets a mysterious woman dressed in white. Who is she, and what is her connection to the teacher's new pupil, a beautiful heiress? Serialized in 1859 - 1860, and first published in book form in 1860 it is still regarded still as one of the best plots in English literature. Told from multiple perspectives, the story is brought to life by its marvellous villains and complex, spirited and believable female characters.
"A Book which keeps one guessing --- wrong"
Moby-Dick by Herman Melville is a classic of American and world literature. Written in 1851, this is the incredible story of the crazed captain Ahab who, consumed by his desire for revenge, drives his crew to scour the oceans of the world for the fearsome white whale, Moby Dick. It soon becomes clear that Ahab will stop at nothing and is prepared to risk everything, his ship, his crew members, and his own life. Herman Melville (1819 - 1891) was an American novelist short story writer, essayist and poet.
One of the great literary classics of Western literature. Set in 1547, this is the tale of a London beggar boy and the English prince who exchange identities.
Mark Twain, real name Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835-1910), is one of the Great American Novelists. Friend to presidents, artists, indutrialists and European royalty, Twain is universally renowned for his wit and astute satire.
"don't waste your money on this production"
Published in twenty monthly installments between March 1852 and September 1853. It is held to be one of Dickens's finest novels. A complex plot, it challenges the reader to make connections--between the fashionable and the outcast, the beautiful and the ugly, the powerful and the victims.
"Too hard to listen to"
Published in 1878, portrays the courtship of the beautiful American girl Daisy Miller by Frederick Winterbourne. Winterbourne's pursuit of her is hampered by her own flirtatiousness, which is frowned upon by the other expatriates they meet in Switzerland and Italy. The the novel coments on the contrast between American and European society that is common to James's work.
Published in 1854, the story describes class conflict in Victorian England and serves as a powerful critique of the social injustices that plagued the Industrial Revolution. Charles Dickens (1812 - 9 June 1870) is arguably the greatest novelist England ever produced. His innate comic genius and shrewd depictions of Victorian life - along with his memorable characters - have made him beloved by readers the world over.
"mediocre story brilliantly read"
The Last of the Mohicans is a historical novel by James Fenimore Cooper, first published in January 1826. James Fenimore Cooper (1789 - 1851) was a prolific and popular American writer of the early 19th century.
"Great voice. Struggles with dialect."
The plot involves the uncovering of secret German preparations for an invasion of the United Kingdom and is sited by Winston Churchill as one of the major reasons the Admiralty decided to establish naval bases at Invergordon, the Firth of Forth and Scapa Flow.
"Excellent including narration"
A comic novel, first published in December 1815, Emma tells of the perils of misconstrued romance. The main character Emma Woodhouse is a well-to-do young woman in a small English town who is a self-appointed matchmaker. The story explores the nature of these orchestrated matches coming to life through the hilarious characters including arguably Austen's two greatest comic creations - the eccentric Mr. Woodhouse and the quintessential bore, Miss Bates.
Jane Eyre remains a classic of 19th-century English literature and is the most famous and influential novel by Charlotte Bronte. Published in 1847, one of the most popular of all English novels, the story tells of the rise of a poor orphan girl against overwhelming odds. It is a work of fiction with memorable characters and vivid scenes exploring themes that have as much relevance today as in the time it was written.
Tess of the d'Urbervilles: A Pure Woman Faithfully Presented was Thomas Hardy's penultimate novel.
First published in 1891 and now considered a great classic of English literature, the book received mixed reviews when it first appeared, in part because it challenged the sexual mores of Hardy's day.