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A Confederacy of Dunces

A Confederacy of Dunces: The Classic Novel Nearly Lost to History

John O'Toole's classic American novel about New Orleans and the tragicomedic lives of its residents, was almost never published because of the tragic decision of John Kennedy Toole to take his own life. It was due to his mother's persistent efforts that over a decade later she convinced an author and instructor at a nearby university to read the manuscript. It won the Pulitzer Prize a year after publication.





The Best Biographies and Autobiographies

The Best Biographies and Autobiographies of All Time

Biographies and autobiographies afford us a connection with another human being, famous or not, and allow us to live their lives vicariously. All great biographies share certain things in common: a true undistorted picture of their lives giving us an insight into another way of living and perceiving the world. Here are our picks for the best biographies and autobiogarphies of all time.





Catcher in the Rye

How World War II Shaped Salinger's Classic Catcher in the Rye

He started writing Catcher in the Rye shortly before going to Europe as a sergeant in the war and carried chapters of the unfinished book with him throughout his tour of duty. He shared a drink with Hemingway in liberated France and later participated in the liberation of the infamous concentration camp Dachau. Holden Caufield's struggles are likely at least partially a reflection of Salinger's real life struggles, dealing with the trauma of war.





To Kill a Mocking Bird

Truman and Capote: A Literary Bond

Everyone has heard the saying, "it's a small world." So it is within the literary world as well. One of the most interesting examples of this is defined by the diametrically opposed personalities of a couple of literary giants that grew up next to each other in Monroeville, Alabama, a town known for little else.




Jewish Legends and Folklore, Legends of the Jews

Legends of the Jews

This book offers a concise collection of Jewish folklore and legends. Very interesting and entertaining as well.


Medieval Libraries

Medieval Libraries

As Europe recovered from the Dark Ages, the university libraries of Paris, Milan, and Oxford were beacons of learning and research. Explore the great medieval libraries of Europe.


Books by William Hope Hodgson

William Hope Hodgson

Before he was killed in World War One, at the Battle of Ypres, William Hope Hodgson succeeded in creating one of the greatest works of macabre fantasy - the Nightland. Set in the distant future after our sun has died, the Earth is a desolate evil place. The age of man has passed and world has passed on to demonic creatures of the night that surround the Last Redoubt of mankind, where the last few million humans endure.

We also have online books of some of his other works: The House on the Borderland and The Boats of the Glen Carrig

Embroidered Books

Embroidered Books

This is the first in our collection of 'Books about Books.' It describes the now forgotten art of English embroidered books. The bindings of these books were truly works of art.


The Loves of Krishna

Loves of Krishna

This illustrated book presents a collection of 15th and 16th century paintings illustrating the loves of the god Krishna. View the Gallery.


Useful Phrases

Useful Phrases

We have added an online collection of useful phrases and word combinations that you can use in your own writings or everyday speech to add impact to what your say.


Illustrations from Holbein's Dance of Death

Holbein's Dance of Death

Holbein's Dance of Death is a collection of 49 medieval illustrations depicting Death in all its forms: from the unexpected to the welcome. The drawings were engraved on wood and the woodcuts were then used to transfer the ink to the page. The copies given in the present issue are impressions from the blocks engraved in 1833 for Douce's Holbein's Dance of Death.


Fantasy Books by George MacDonald

George MacDonald

We have assembled one of the most comprehensive online archives of the works of the great Scottish fantasy writer, George MacDonald. Although now best known for his landmark books of fantasy such as The Princess and the Goblin, Lilith and Phantastes, George MacDonald wrote many books including historical romances, poetry and essays. His works influenced writers such as C.S. Lewis and J.R.R. Tolkien. Now you can discover the works of George MacDonald presented in a readable online format.


The Adventures of Baron Munchausen

Adventures of Baron Munchausen

Baron Munchausen has become synonymous with telling improbable tales of adventure. Read about his exploits here.


Egyptian Book of the Dead

Egyptian Book of the Dead

Actually a collection of funerary texts and prayers meant to guide the soul of the dead through the afterlife. We have an online edition of the book of the dead here.


Secret Hiding Places

A fascinating tour of the secret chambers and hiding places that are tucked away in the corners and walls of many British homes. These hiding places sheltered defeated Royalists, Catholic priests and common robbers. Who knows what secrets are still hidden in the attics and basements of manor houses and castles.


Memoirs of Casanova

Memoirs of Casanova

The greatest lover in history was also a highly literate diarist and observer of human behaviour. His memoirs comprise a huge opus, spanning his enire career as a ladies man. But Casanova's memoirs are much more than a tell-all book; they are rich with minute observations of social mores and customs of the time. The memoirs will be added online soon.


Books and Short Stories by Edgar Allan Poe

Edgar Allan Poe

All of the short stories and poems of Edgar Allan Poe are presented online, including his famous works such as The Fall of the House of Usher, and The Tell-Tale Heart.


Quotations About Books

Quotes About Books


Books have shaped societies and influence the course of history. Books are at the heart of human culture; they can teach tolerance or fan the flames of hate; they can enlighten and deceive. Here is a collection of quotes about books and the people who read them.




Books Online

All books are divisible into two classes, the books of the hour and the books of all time. - John Ruskin.

Talent alone cannot make a writer. There must be a man behind the book. - Ralph Waldo Emerson

More Great Books and Authors to Explore!
Edgar Allan Poe
Edgar Allan Poe
William Hope Hodgson
William Hope Hodgson
Secret Hiding Places
Secret Hiding Places
Egyptian Book of the Dead
Egyptian Book of the Dead


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Articles About Books and Authors that Matter

The Fascinating Story of Medieval Libraries

The Lost Art of Embroidered Books

Holbein's Dance of Death: A Cheerily Macabre World View

Quotes About Books: Writers Writing About Books and the Art of Reading





Explore

Micro Nations: Sometimes the Smallest Countries Have the Biggest Dreams

George Cruikshank: A Moralistic Victorian Crusader With a Secret Life

Marguerite de Navarre: Queen, Feminist and Author of Raunchy Medieval Lit

The Weird and Wonderful Illustrations of Gustave Dore

World War One Propaganda Posters







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