The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
First published in 1886, Dr Jekyll & Mr Hyde has since become one of the most enduring horror stories ever written. Inspired by a frightful dream, Stevenson wished to explore 'that strong sense of man's double being', something which had long preoccupied his thoughts. The book considers the notion that humanity possesses an innate capacity for both good and evil, and that only by suppressing the 'dark' side can we present to the world a facade of civilised respectability. We follow the story of the distinguished physician, Dr Jekyll, who invents a drug which causes him to transform into Mr Hyde, a violent and ruthless criminal who embodies everything that is grotesque in Dr Jekyll's nature. As time passes, Hyde's control over Jekyll begins to grow, and the insidious evil lurking within Jekyll threatens to conquer the good. The continuing relevance of the moral questions posed in this novel has afforded it a firmly established place in the literary canon. This story is, however, above all else, a thrilling and terrifying tale, and a true classic of the gothic genre.
Animal Farm (Signet Classics)
This is a classic tale of humanity awash in totalitarianism. A farm is taken over by its overworked, mistreated animals. With flaming idealism and stirring slogans, they set out to create a paradise of progress, justice, and equality. First published during the epoch of Stalinist Russia, today it is clear that wherever and whenever freedom is attacked, and under whatever banner, the cutting clarity and savage comedy of Orwell's masterpiece is a message still ferociously fresh.
The Great Gatsby
The authentic edition from Fitzgerald's original publisher. The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald's third book, stands as the supreme achievement of his career. This exemplary novel of the Jazz Age has been acclaimed by generations of readers. The story of the fabulously wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when The New York Times noted "gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession," it is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s. The Great Gatsby is one of the great classics of twentieth-century literature.
HarperCollins is proud to present its new range of best-loved, essential classics. 'We have declared before that it is not only expedient but necessary for a prince to take care his foundations be good, otherwise his fabric will be sure to fail.' Considered one of the first works of modern philosophy, Machiavelli's The Prince is an intense study on the nature of power and the course it should take when ruling a country and expresses the author's strong and unyielding ideals and beliefs on using force rather than law to achieve your aims. Responsible for the widely-used phrase 'Machiavellian', with all of its negative connotations, his extreme treatise remains a classic text to this day.
Khalil Gibran (1883-1931) was Lebanese by birth but spent a major part of his life in America in the early part of the 20th century. He wrote many collections of stories with a wise or whimsical tone, but none more popular than "The Prophet", his first collection, or "The Wanderer", his final anthology. They are read here with great sympathy and understanding by Robert Glenister.
“There it lay, the great pearl, perfect as the moon.”
Like his father and grandfather before him, Kino is a poor diver, gathering pearls from the gulf beds that once brought great wealth to the Kings of Spain and now provide Kino, Juana, and their infant son with meager subsistence. Then, on a day like any other, Kino emerges from the sea with a pearl as large as a sea gull's egg, as "perfect as the moon." With the pearl comes hope, the promise of comfort and of security....
A story of classic simplicity, based on a Mexican folk tale, The Pearl explores the secrets of man's nature, the darkest depths of evil, and the luminous possibilities of love.
The Old Man and the Sea
Set in the Gulf Stream off the coast of Havana, Hemingway's magnificent fable is the tale of an old man, a young boy and a giant fish. This story of heroic endeavour won Hemingway the Nobel Prize for Literature. It stands as a unique and timeless vision of the beauty and grief of man's challenge to the elements.
Since it was first published in English, in 1946, Albert Camus's extraordinary first novel, The Stranger (L'Etranger), has had a profound impact on millions of American readers. Through this story of an ordinary man who unwittingly gets drawn into a senseless murder on a sun-drenched Algerian beach, Camus was exploring what he termed "the nakedness of man faced with the absurd."
Now, in an illuminating new American translation (the only English version available for more than forty years was done by a British translator), the original intent of The Stranger is made more immediate, as Matthew Ward captures in exact and lucid language precisely what Camus said and how he said it, thus giving this haunting novel a new life for generations to come.
Albert Camus, son of a working-class family, was born in Algeria in 1913. He spent the early years of his life in North Africa, where he worked at Various jobs -- in the weather bureau, in an automobile-accessory firm, in a shipping company -- to help pay for his courses at the University of Algiers. He then turned to journalism as a career. His report on the unhappy state of the Muslims of the Kabylie region aroused the Algerian government to action and brought him public notice. From 1935 to 1938 he ran the Theatre de L'Equipe, a theatrical company that produced plays by Malraux, Gide, Synge, Dostoevski, and others. During World War II he was one of the leading writers of the French Resistance and editor of Combat, then an important underground newspaper. Camus was always very active in the theater, and several of his plays have been published and produced. His fiction, including The Stranger, The Plague, The Fall, and Exile and the Kingdom; his philosophical essays, The Myth of Sisyphus and The Rebel; and his plays have assured his preeminent position in modern French letters. In 1957 Camus was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. His sudden death on January 4, 1960, cut short the career of one of the most important literary figures of the Western world when he was at the very summit of his powers.
The Diving-Bell and the Butterfly
`Locked-in syndrome: paralysed from head to toe, the patient, his mind intact, is imprisoned inside his own body, unable to speak or move. In my case, blinking my left eyelid is my only means of communication.'
In December 1995, Jean-Dominique Bauby, editor-in-chief of French `Elle' and the father of two young children, suffered a massive stroke and found himself paralysed and speechless, but entirely conscious, trapped by what doctors call `locked-in syndrome'. Using his only functioning muscle - his left eyelid - he began dictating this remarkable story, painstakingly spelling it out letter by letter.
His book offers a haunting, harrowing look inside the cruel prison of locked-in syndrome, but it is also a triumph of the human spirit. The acclaimed 2007 film adaptation, directed by Julian Schnabel, won Best Director at Cannes and was nominated for the Palme d'Or.