Books

Book Review: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas by Jules Verne

Title: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas Author: Jules Verne Translator: William Butcher Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2009 (1863) Genre: Adventure Fiction / Science Fiction / Classics Summary: French naturalist Dr Aronnax embarks on an expedition to hunt down a sea monster, but discovers instead the Nautilus, a self-contained world built by its enigmatic captain. Together Nemo and… Continue reading Book Review: Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Seas by Jules Verne

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Book Review: Memoirs from the House of the Dead by Fyodor Dostoevsky

Title: Memoirs from the House of the Dead Author: Fyodor Dostoevsky Translator: Jessie Coulson  Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2008 (1862) Genre: Semi-autobiographical / Philosophical Fiction / Classics Summary: In this almost documentary account of his own experiences of penal servitude in Siberia, Dostoevsky describes the physical and mental suffering of the convicts, the squalor and the degradation,… Continue reading Book Review: Memoirs from the House of the Dead by Fyodor Dostoevsky

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Book Review: Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell

Title: Wives and Daughters Author: Elizabeth Gaskell Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2009 (1863) Genre: Fiction / Classics Summary: Molly Gibson is the daughter of the doctor in the small provincial town of Hollingford. Her widowed father marries a second time to give Molly the woman’s presence he feels she lacks, but until the arrival of Cynthia,… Continue reading Book Review: Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell

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Book Review: A Journal of the Plague Year by Daniel Defoe

Title: A Journal of the Plague Year Author: Daniel Defoe Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2010 (1722) Genre: Classics / Historical Summary: Defoe’s A Journal of the Plague Year is an extraordinary account of the devastation and human suffering inflicted on the city of London by the Great Plague of 1665. Purporting to be an eye-witness, Defoe’s fictional narrator… Continue reading Book Review: A Journal of the Plague Year by Daniel Defoe

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Book Review: Mary & The Wrongs of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft

Title: Mary & The Wrongs of Woman Author: Mary Wollstonecraft Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2009 (1788) Genre: Classics / Fiction / Philosophy Summary: Mary Wollstonecraft is best known for her pioneering views on the rights of women to share equal rights and opportunities with men. Expressed most forcefully in her Vindication of the Rights of Woman (1792), her forthright opinions… Continue reading Book Review: Mary & The Wrongs of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft

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Book Review: Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

Title: Around the World in Eighty Days Author: Jules Verne Translator: William Butcher Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2008 (1873) Genre: Classics / Adventure Summary: One night in the reform club, Phileas Fogg bets his companions that he can travel across the globe in just eighty days. Breaking the well-established routine of his daily life, he immediately sets off for Dover… Continue reading Book Review: Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

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Book Review: Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth

Title: Castle Rackrent Author: Maria Edgeworth Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2009 (1800) Genre: Classics / Historical Summary: With her satire on Anglo-Irish landlords in Castle Rackrent (1800), Maria Edgeworth pioneered the regional novel and inspired Sir Walter Scott’s Waverley (1814). Politically risky, stylistically innovative, and wonderfully entertaining, the novel changes the focus of conflict in Ireland from religion to class, and… Continue reading Book Review: Castle Rackrent by Maria Edgeworth

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Book Review: Confessions of an English Opium-Eater by Thomas De Quincey

Title: Confessions of an English Opium-Eater Author: Thomas De Quincey Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2013 (1821) Genre: Autobiography Summary: Thomas De Quincey’s Confessions of an English Opium-Eater (1821) launched a fascination with drug use and abuse that has continued from his day to ours. In the Confessions De Quincey invents recreational drug-taking, but he also details both the lurid nightmares that beset… Continue reading Book Review: Confessions of an English Opium-Eater by Thomas De Quincey

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Book Review: The Complete Poems by Sir Thomas Wyatt

Title: The Complete Poems Author: Sir Thomas Wyatt Publisher: Penguin Classics Date: 1978 (c.1530s) Genre: Classics / Poetry Summary: As a diplomat in Renaissance Europe, and a luminary at the court of Henry VII, Sir Thomas Wyatt wrote in an incestuous world where everyone was uneasily subject to the royal whims and rages. Wyatt had himself survived… Continue reading Book Review: The Complete Poems by Sir Thomas Wyatt

Books

Book Review: The Major Works of John Donne

Title: The Major Works Author: John Donne Publisher: Oxford University Press Date: 2008 (c.1600s) Genre: Classics / Poetry / Theology Summary: John Donne is perhaps the most important poet of the seventeenth century and has often been referred to as the founder of the metaphysical genre. His poetry is highly distinctive and individual, adopting a multitude of tones, images,… Continue reading Book Review: The Major Works of John Donne