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Christmas Reading List

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    A Study in Scarlet

    Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's A Study in Scarlet is the literary debut of the world's most famous fictional detective, Sherlock Holmes, introduced by Iain Sinclair with notes by Ed Glinert in Penguin Classics.Convalescing in London after a disastrous experience of war in Afghanistan, Dr John Watson finds himself sharing rooms with his enigmatic new acquaintance, Sherlock Holmes. But their quiet bachelor life at 221B Baker Street is soon interrupted by the grisly discovery of a dead man in a grimy 'ill-omened' house in south-east London, his face contorted by an expression of horror and hatred such as Watson has never seen before. On the wall, the word rache - German for 'revenge' - is written in blood, yet there are no wounds on the victim or signs of a struggle. Watson's head is in a whirl, but the formidable Holmes relishes this challenge to his deductive powers, and so begins their famous investigative partnership.In his introduction, Iain Sinclair discusses the links between Sherlock Holmes mysteries and the Jack the Ripper murders, Conan Doyle's narrative style and his depiction of London. This edition also includes further reading, a chronology and notes.Sir Arthur Conan Doyle (1859-1930) was born in Edinburgh where he qualified as a doctor, but it was his writing which brought him fame, with the creation of Sherlock Holmes, the first scientific detective. He was also a social reformer who used his investigative skills to prove the innocence of individuals. Iain Sinclair is the author of Downriver (winner of the James Tait Black Memorial Prize and the Encore Award), and his latest book Ghost Milk: Calling Time on the Grand Project is published by Penguin.Ed Glinert writes a regular column for Time Out magazine, and is the author of The Literary Guide to London. Glinert's latest book, The London Compendium, is published by Penguin.If you liked A Study in Scarlet you might enjoy The Hound of the Baskervilles, also available in Penguin Classics.

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    The Mysterious Affair at Styles

    With impeccable timing Hercule Poirot, the renowned Belgian detective, makes his dramatic entrance on to the English crime stage. Recently, there had been some strange goings on at Styles St Mary. Evelyn, constant companion to old Mrs Inglethorp, had stormed out of the house muttering something about 'a lot of sharks'. And with her, something indefinable had gone from the atmosphere. Her presence had spelt security; now the air seemed rife with suspicion and impending evil. A shattered coffee cup, a splash of candle grease, a bed of begonias all Poirot required to display his now legendary powers of detection.

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    Le Morte D'Arthur

    Central figures in the Matter of Britain, King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table still inspire many books and films today. Drawing on the legends of Camelot from French and English sources, Sir Thomas Malory compiled the drama of illicit love, the magic of sorcery, and the quest for the Holy Grail into a sordid and chivalrous tale that's been recounted for centuries. This beautiful leather-bound volume, with gilded edges and a ribbon bookmark so you never lose your place, makes a treasured edition of classic Arthurian folklore in any home library.

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    Ancient Greek Philosophy

    Ancient Greek Philosophy: From the Presocratics to the Hellenistic Philosophers presents a comprehensive introduction to the philosophers and philosophical traditions that developed in ancient Greece from 585 BC to 529 AD. Provides coverage of the Presocratics through the Hellenistic philosophersMoves beyond traditional textbooks that conclude with AristotleA uniquely balanced organization of exposition, choice excerpts and commentary, informed by classroom feedbackContextual commentary traces the development of lines of thought through the period, ideal for students new to the disciplineCan be used in conjunction with the online resources found at http://tomblackson.com/Ancient/toc.html

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    The Thirteenth Tale

    Now a major BBC film, directed by Oscar-winner Christopher Hampton (Atonement and Dangerous Liaisons), starring Vanessa Redgrave and Olivia Colman. Angelfield House stands abandoned and forgotten. It was once home to the March family - fascinating, manipulative Isabelle, brutal, dangerous Charlie, and the wild, untamed twins, Emmeline and Adeline. But Angelfield House hides a chilling secret which strikes at the very heart of each of them, tearing their lives apart...Now Margaret Lea is investigating Angelfield's past - and the mystery of the March family starts to unravel. What has Angelfield been hiding? What is its connection with the enigmatic writer Vida Winter? And what is the secret that strikes at the heart of Margaret's own, troubled life? As Margaret digs deeper, two parallel stories unfold, and the tale she uncovers sheds a disturbing light on her own life...

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