'Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird.' A lawyer's advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel - a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with exuberant humour the irrationality of adult attitudes to race and class in the Deep South of the '30s.
"Transported to the wold of Scout and Jem."
What defines a family? That is the underlying question in the life of Pony Boy Curtis. When his parents die in a car wreck, he comes to depend on the love, friendship and support of his two older brothers and a gang of friends defined by poverty, bad attitudes and long greasy hair. The gang, called greasers, carry on a long-standing war with a group of rich kids, known as Socs, a fight fueled by ignorance and prejudice.An American coming-of-age classic, a story of friendship and social prejudice among a gang of friends.
"loved it all"
F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic American novel of the Roaring Twenties is beloved by generations of readers and stands as his crowning work. This new audio edition, authorized by the Fitzgerald estate, is narrated by Oscar-nominated actor Jake Gyllenhaal (Brokeback Mountain). Gyllenhaal's performance is a faithful delivery in the voice of Nick Carraway, the Midwesterner turned New York bond salesman, who rents a small house next door to the mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby. There, he has a firsthand view of Gatsby’s lavish West Egg parties - and of his undying love....
"Enjoyable & a reminder of a well spoken novel"
At the heart of Joseph Heller's best-selling novel, first published in 1961, is a satirical indictment of military madness and stupidity, and the desire of the ordinary man to survive it.
Guy Montag is a fireman. In his world, where television rules and literature is on the brink of extinction, firemen start fires rather than put them out. His job is to destroy the most illegal of commodities, the printed book, along with the houses in which they are hidden. Montag never questions the destruction and ruin his actions produce, returning each day to his bland life and wife, Mildred, who spends all day with her television "family."
"great story poorly presented"
Streetwise George and his big, childlike friend Lennie are drifters, searching for work in the fields and valleys of California. They have nothing except the clothes on their back, and a hope that one day they’ll find a place of their own and live the American dream. But dreams come at a price. Gentle giant Lennie doesn’t know his own strength, and when they find work at a ranch he gets into trouble with the boss’s daughter-in-law. Trouble so bad that even his protector George may not be able to save him....
"A masterclass in story-telling"
Shocking and controversial when it was first published, Steinbeck's Pulitzer prize-winning epic remains his undisputed masterpiece. Set against the background of Dust Bowl Oklahoma and Californian migrant life, it tells of the Joad family, who, like thousands of others, are forced to travel west in search of the promised land.
"Don`t Miss This Experience"
In a scrap heap within an abandoned factory, the greatest invention in history lies dormant and unused. By what fatal error of judgment has its value gone unrecognized, its brilliant inventor punished rather than rewarded for his efforts? In defense of those greatest of human qualities that have made civilization possible, one man sets out to show what would happen to the world if all the heroes of innovation and industry went on strike.
"Interesting philosophy "
Sal Paradise, a young innocent, joins his hero Dean Moriarty, a traveller and mystic, the living epitome of Beat, on a breathless, exuberant ride back and forth across the United States. Their hedonistic search for release or fulfilment through drink, sex, drugs and jazz becomes an exploration of personal freedom, a test of the limits of the American dream.
WARNING: This is not the actual audiobook of To Kill a Mockingbird by Nelle Harper Lee. Do not buy this Study Guide, Summary & Analysis geared towards busy literature students if you are looking for a full copy of this classic book or audiobook. Instead, our expert literary critic has already read To Kill a Mockingbird and pulled out the key characters, events, and action points to give you a comprehensive chapter-by-chapter summary and review guide in a clear, concise, easy-to-understand format.
The Old Man and the Sea is one of Hemingway's most enduring works. Told in language of great simplicity and power, it is the story of an old Cuban fisherman, down on his luck, and his supreme ordeal, a relentless, agonizing battle with a giant marlin far out in the Gulf Stream. Here Hemingway recasts, in strikingly contemporary style, the classic theme of courage in the face of defeat, of personal triumph won from loss.
"A Story Where Hemingway Was Not the Main Character"
A modern masterpiece,The Godfather is a searing portrayal of the 1940s criminal underworld. It is also the intimate story of the Corleone family, at once drawn together and ripped apart by its unique position at the core of the American Mafia. Still shocking 40 years after it was first published, this compelling tale of blackmail, murder, and family values is a true classic.
"I will listen to this again and again"
James Purefoy stars in this BBC Radio 4 full-cast dramatisation of Robert M. Pirsig's multi-million best-selling philosophical novel. One of the most important and influential books of the past half-century, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance tells the iconic story of a father and son's motorcycle trip across America in the 1960s. Yet it also describes a personal and philosophical journey. Now dramatised for the first time by Peter Flannery and starring James Purefoy, this full-cast drama adds a new and original dimension to a true modern classic.
"This is immersive."
This true modern masterpiece is built around the two fateful words that make up the title and herald the end - “Alas, Babylon.” When a nuclear holocaust ravages the United States, a thousand years of civilization are stripped away overnight, and tens of millions of people are killed instantly. But for one small town in Florida, miraculously spared, the struggle is just beginning, as men and women of all backgrounds join together to confront the darkness....
John Fowles’s The Magus was a literary landmark of the 1960s. Nicholas Urfe goes to a Greek island to teach at a private school and becomes enmeshed in curious happenings at the home of a mysterious Greek recluse, Maurice Conchis. Are these events, involving attractive young English sisters, just psychological games, or an elaborate joke, or more? Reality shifts as the story unfolds. The Magus reflected the issues of the 1960s perfectly, and it continues to create tension and concern today.
"Clever. Unique. Enjoyable."
Following the events of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Huckleberry Finn is under the watchful stewardship of the Widow Douglas. However, when he is forced back into his drunken father's custody, Huck fakes his own death and runs off down river. In the process, he meets up with Jim, a runaway slave, and the two become friends as well as travel companions. Their adventures lead them through many twists and turns through the American South, embarking on a legendary journey.
"Love the voice!"
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest is one of the most electrifying, most admired novels of our time. Set in the bleak confines of a state mental hospital and narrated by a half-Indian patient named Chief Bromden, it's the story of a titanic battle of wills between two unforgettable characters.
One of the 20th century's most challenging novels of ideas, The Fountainhead champions the cause of individualism through the story of a gifted young architect who defies the tyranny of conventional public opinion. The struggle for personal integrity in a world that values conformity above creativity is powerfully illustrated through three characters: Howard Roarke, a genius; Gail Wynand, a newspaper mogul and self-made millionaire; and Dominique Francon, a devastating beauty.
"Performance makes perfect"
The most thorough statement of one of Emerson's recurrent themes, the need for each individual to avoid conformity and false consistency, and follow his or her own instincts and ideas. It is the source of one of Emerson's most famous quotations, "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." This essay is a considered a watershed moment in which transcendentalism became a major cultural movement. An American classic.
Waterstone's book of the year. Colum McCann once called Stoner one of the great forgotten novels of the past century, but it seems it is forgotten no longer - in 2013, translations of Stoner began appearing on best-seller lists across Europe. William Stoner enters the University of Missouri at 19 to study agriculture. A seminar on English literature changes his life, and he never returns to work on his father's farm. Stoner becomes a teacher. He marries the wrong woman.
Bernice, a wealthy girl from Eau Claire, Wisconsin, visits her cousin Marjorie for the month of August. One night Bernice overhears Marjorie complain to her mother that Bernice is a drag on her social life. Bernice resigns herself to allow Marjorie to coach her on the fine arts of fashion, flirting, dancing, and conversation. But Bernice becomes more accomplished at these things than her cousin would have liked, attracting the attention of Marjorie's beau. A rivalry develops. There are irreversible consequences.
The Cut Glass Bowl is the story of the beautiful but ill-fated Evelyn Piper, who succumbs to the power of a cut glass bowl - a wedding gift from a spurned former beau. It is a unique and powerful portrait depicting how frivolous choices can lead to deterioration and loss of all that one loves. It was written by F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1920 as a short story for Colliers magazine.
Ardita Farnum is a beautiful but spoiled and rebellious young woman on a yachting trip to Florida with her uncle. On the verge of throwing her life away on a disreputable playboy, she is captured by pirates and becomes enamored with their captain. She wonders if she has she met her match.
Brian Dalyrimple is a hero of WWI who comes home to realize that it's every man for himself. When he begins to understand the challenges of moving up the business ladder, he takes an unusual turn. Dalyrimple Goes Wrong is one of F. Scott Fitzgerald's most popular short stories and has been translated into multiple languages. It was written in 1920 for Colliers magazine.
Benediction tells the story of 19-year-old Lois, who spends an afternoon getting reacquainted with her 36-year-old brother, Keith who is training to become a Jesuit priest. It opens with Lois sending a telegram to her love interest, Howard, whom we never meet, but who is anxious whether she will end their relationship or continue it by meeting with him the next day.
Not long after the beginning of the 20th century, a woman has a dream about what she imagines the 21st century will bring. This utopian fiction piece was written by Winnifred Harper Cooley in 1902. Cooley is best known for her book The New Womanhood. Cooley's mother, Ida Husted Harper, was an author, a journalist, and a prominent figure in the United States' women's suffrage movement.
Sally Carrol Happer is a popular 19-year-old girl living in Tarleton, Georgia. She is bored with her life in Tarleton, and, much to the chagrin of her local friends, she becomes engaged to Harry Bellamy, who is from a northern town. She brushes off the concerns of her friends and describes that she needs something "more in her life" and to see "things happen on a big scale".
Back in the mid-1980s when I was teaching in Warren College at the University of California, San Diego, we were required to use Mark Twain's famous book, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, in our classes. However, we were cautioned beforehand that certain words that were in common usage in the 19th century (such as the n-word) were no longer acceptable either in speech or print today.
The adventures of Dorothy in the Land of Oz. Thanks in part to the 1939 MGM movie, it is one of the best-known stories in American popular culture.
Dark spruce forest frowned on either side the frozen waterway. The trees had been stripped by a recent wind of their white covering of frost, and they seemed to lean towards each other, black and ominous, in the fading light. A vast silence reigned over the land. The land itself was a desolation, lifeless, without movement, so lone and cold that the spirit of it was not even that of sadness.
Henry, or the youth as Crane refers to him leaves his home a naïve boy with visions of grandeur and glory; yet he runs from his first battle only to later join the walking wounded as an imposter. He wished that he, too, had a wound, a red badge of courage. He falls in with men who will shortly die from their wounds. One, a spectral soldier with a terrible wound, turns out to be his friend Jim Conklin.
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.
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.
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.
Edgar Allan Poe (1809-1849) is celebrated as a master of the gothic tale of the macabre and the supernatural, but he also wrote a number of humorous and satirical tales, seven of which are presented here.
A New York 'it' girl, Lily Bart is a beauty of slender means and costly tastes, sought after at all the high society parties in town. Her outstanding looks and charm make it a given that she will soon be married to a man of exceptional wealth and status. One by one, the multimillionaires she meets fall at her feet, but somehow Lily finds herself incapable of making a purely mercenary match and so finds herself caught up in a destructive tussle between her emotional and financial needs.
Inspired by events witnessed during her years as a court reporter in Iowa, Glaspell crafted a story in which two rural women deduce the details of a murder in which a housewife is accused of killing her husband. This nuanced tale revolves around the women's understanding the clues left amidst the "trifles" of the housewife's kitchen.
Buck did not read the newspapers, or he would have known that trouble was brewing, not alone for himself, but for every tide-water dog, strong of muscle and with warm, long hair, from Puget Sound to San Diego. Because men, groping in the Arctic darkness, had found a yellow metal, and because steamship and transportation companies were booming the find, thousands of men were rushing into the Northland.
Washington Square tells the poignant and gently comic story of Catherine Sloper, a sweet and unassuming young heiress, and her fortune-seeking suitor Morris Townsend. Set in New York City during the 1840s, the story follows Ms. Sloper's conflicts with her concerned father, who attempts to thwart Mr. Townsend, and her busybody aunt, who encourages the attachment. But amid all the duplicity and folly, Ms. Sloper slowly grows towards independence and maturity, and begins to make her own decisions.