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A BOOK LIST °°

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You will find introductions and summaries
for many of these books at

'Spark Notes,'
for which,
CLICK HERE!

AMIS, KINGSLEY LUCKY JIM
AMIS, MARTIN MONEY
ANGELOU, MAYA I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS
ASIMOV, ISSAC FOUNDATION,

THE FIRST OF THE 'FOUNDATION TRILOGY' AUSTIN, JANE PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
EMMA

BALDWIN, JAMES ANOTHER COUNTRY
BELLOW, SAUL HENDERSON THE RAIN KING
THE BIBLE
Old Testament : JUDGES,JOB & PSALMS (Revised Standard Version) New Testament: MARK, 2 CORINTHIANS
BOWEN, ELIZABETH COLLECTED STORIES

See especially 'The Demon Lover' BRADBURY, RAY THE ILLUSTRATED MAN
BRONTE, CHARLOTTE JANE AYRE
BRONTE, EMILY WUTHERING HEIGHTS
BURGESS, ANTHONY TIME FOR A TIGER
( from the trilogy: THE LONG DAY WANES) THE CLOCKWORK ORANGE

CAPOTE, TRUMANN BREAKFAST AT TIFFANY'S
CAREY, JOYCE THE HORSE'S MOUTH

The Story:

The Horse's Mouth, the third and most celebrated volume of Joyce Cary's First Trilogy, is perhaps the finest novel ever written about an artist. Its painter hero, the charming and larcenous Gulley Jimson, has an insatiable genius for creation and a no less remarkable appetite for destruction. I she a great artist? a has-been? or an exhausted, drunken ne'er-do-well? He is without doubt a visionary, and as he criss-crosses London in search of money and inspirat ion the world as seen though his eyes is both an outrage and a place of terrible beauty.

Each volume of Cary's trilogy, which begins with Herself Surprised and continues in To Be a Pilgrim, brings a single character to intense and memorable life and can be read entirely on its own. But when read together the three books, with their three s trikingly different narrators, afford new and startling perspectives on eachother. In the end, the trilogy offers a sweeping vision, at once funny and sad, sympathetic and satirical, of humanity in all its fallenness and freedom. It is the masterwork of a writer of dazzling insight and verbalresource, and one of the outstanding landmarks of twentieth-century fiction.

CARROLL, LEWIS						THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS
CATHER, WILLA MY ANTONIA

CHANDLER, RAYMOND THE LONG GOODBYE
CHESNUTT, C.W. HOUSE BEHIND THE CEDARS
CHILDRESS, MARK CRAZY IN ALABAMA
CHOPIN, KATE THE AWAKENING
COLLINS, WILKIE THE MOONSTONE
CONAN-DOYLE, ARTHUR SHERLOCK HOLMES STORIES
CONRAD, JOSEPH YOUTH , TYPHOON

The Story:

Many chronicles have been written about life at sea, but few, if any, can compare with Joseph Conrad's masterpiece. It is the story of one unremarkable steamship captain, pitted against a storm of incredible fury. Captain Macwhirr has a reputation as a solid, steadfast man, who "having just enough imagination to carry him through each successive day, and no more" cannot fully believe any storm would be a match for his powerful ship. So, when the barometer and other clues begin to hint at trouble ahead, he is only moderately concerned and unwilling to change course and lose precious time--a decision that may prove more costly than he could ever have imagined.

DAHL, ROAL TALES OF THE UNEXPECTED
DICKENS, CHARLES OLIVER TWIST
HARD TIMES

DEFOE, DANIEL MOLL FLANDERS
DEIGHTON, LEN THE IPCRESS FILE
DOCTOROW, E.L. RAGTIME
DONLEAVY, J.P. THE GINGER MAN

The Story:

If you can enjoy a book about a boozing expatriot in Ireland who disregards all responsibilities (including his family) and owes money to everyone he has come into contact with, then read on. This is not to say that Donleavy necessarily endorses a life of drinking and whoring, he is merely writing about it (more drinking than whoring). Fans of literature, this book cannot be ignored. Donleavy breaks every rule in the book with his poetic sensibilites. He writes with a flourish and a sense of imagery that is both uncommon and incredible. I cannot say that I have much regard for the modern library or their lists, but I can see why they included this book in their "Top 100 Books of the 20th Century in the English Language." This is a book I will not easily forget.

DREISER,THEODORE					SISTER CAREY
The Story:

Sister Carrie,

Theodore Dreiser's revolutionary first novel, was published in 1900--sort of. The story of Carrie Meeber, an 18-year-old country girl who moves to Chicago and becomes a kept woman, was strong stuff at the turn of the century, and what Dreiser's wary publisher released was a highly expurgated version. Times change, and we now have a restored "author's cut" of Sister Carrie that shows how truly ahead of his time Dreiser was. First and foremost, he has written an astute, nonmoralizing account of a woman and her limited options in late-19th-century America. That's impressive in and of itself, but Dreiser doesn't stop there. Digging deeply into the psychological underpinnings of his characters, he gives us people who are often strangers to themselves, drifting numbly until fate pushes them on a path they can later neither defend nor even remember choosing.

Dreiser's story unfolds in the measured cadences of an earlier era. This sometimes works brilliantly as we follow the choices, small and large, that lead some characters to doom and others to glory. On the other hand, the middle chapters--of which there are many--do drag somewhat, even when one appreciates Dreiser's intentions. If you can make it through the sagging midsection, however, you'll be rewarded by Sister Carrie's last 150 pages, which depict the harrowing downward spiral of one of the book's central characters. Here Dreiser portrays with brutal power how the wrong decision--or lack of decision--can lay waste to a life.>br> --Rebecca Gleason

 
DURRELL, LAWRENCE					MOUNTOLIVE
From the 'Alexandria Quartet':
One of a series of four novels by Lawrence Durrell.

The lush and sensuous tetralogy, which consists of Justine (1957), Balthazar (1958), Mountolive (1958), and Clea (1960), is set in Alexandria, Egypt, during the 1940s. Three of the books are written in the first person, Mountolive in the third. The first three volumes describe, from different viewpoints, a series of events in Alexandria before World War II; the fourth carries the story forward into the war years. The events of the narrative are mostly seen through the eyes of one L.G. Darley, who observes the interactions of his lovers, friends, and acquaintances in Alexandria. In Justine, Darley attempts to recover from and understand his recently ended affair with J ustine Hosnani. Reviewing various papers and examining his memories, he reads the events of his recent past in romantic terms. Balthazar, named for Darley's friend, a doctor and mystic, reinterprets Darley's views from a philosophical and intellectual point ofview. The third novel is a straightforward narrative of events, and Clea, volume four, reveals Darley healing, maturing, and becoming capable of loving Clea Montis, a painter and the woman for whom he was destined.

ELIOT, GEORGE SILAS MARNER

FALKNER, WILLIAM THE SOUND AND THE FURY
FARRRELL, J.G. THE SINGAPORE GRIP
FIELDING, HENRY TOM JONES
FIRBANK, RONALD VALMOUTH
FITZGERALD, F. SCOTT THE GREAT GATSBY
FOSTER, E.M. A PASSAGE TO INDIA
A ROOM WITH A VIEW

FOWLES, JOHN THE MAGUS

GARNER, ALAN THE RED SHIFT
GASKELL, ELIZABETH et al. CANFORD
GIBBON, LEWIS GRASSIC CLOUD HOWE inA Scots Quair
GOLDING, WILLIAM THE SPIRE
GRAVES, ROBERT SHORT STOEIES
GREEN, GRAHAM THE QUIET AMERICAN

Best novel of the 1950s

So slim yet such a nugget of gold. Manages to analyze Vietnam and show the stupidity of America's involvement with it, while ostensibly telling a love-triangle crime & punishment story complete with a French Raskolnikov. After one reading, you can read it again, taking Pyle for America's government itself, Phuong for the Vietnamese people (they make dangerous bedfellows!), and Fowler for Greene himself. The magnificent use of a few words to characterize people and places is world class. This book is maybe the best novel of the 20th century, certainly of the '50s. Must-read for any literate American.

GREEN, HENRY						LIVING, LOVING AND PARTY GOING
A brilliant writer whose books, alas, are seldom read.

"Loving" and "Nothing" are exceptional books and fuse literary experimentation with social satire. "Loving" is possibly the most accessible of his novels; if you dislike it, the chances are good that you will hate everything else he wrote (but you will probably avoid him anyway). But if you enjoy the moments of stunning imagery and artistic innovation -- despite Green's idiosyncratic use of grammar -- you should want to read all of the remaining novels. "Nothing," therefore, is my next recommendation: consisting almost entirely of dialogue, it is a model of parallelism in which four characters move apart, come together again, then shift once more in their emotional attachments (all set within similar repeating scenes) -- a clever overlapping of different generations at a time when old and new worlds were both threatening to fall apart.

Such a treat

All three of these novels are terrific, but I think PARTY GOING is really Green's masterpiece. It's one of the funniest accounts of the Bright Young Things ever written, but it veers beyond Waugh to say much more serious things about class, modernity, social maneuvering, and abovve all compassion--Miss Fellowes' determination to take care of the dead pigeon, while initially absurd, comes to reach almost Shakespearean proportions in its utter pathos and dignity.

Green is always overlooked by fans of British social comedy simply because his prose is initially so surprising. But there's a real cult around his writings, and if you start with LOVING (the most accessible of his novels, and one of the best), you'll quickly see why.

HAMMETT, DASHIELL THE MALTESE FALCON
HARDY, THOMAS FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD
HARTLEY, L.P. THE GO-BETWEEN
HAWTHORN, NATHANIEL THE SCARLET LETTER

or The Scarlet Letter
HELLER, JOSEPH CATCH 22

The plot constitutes the desperate efforts of the protagonist, Captain Yossarian, to achieve his goal: to get out of the army. The story depicts the many misadventures he goes through to obtain this, which he finally does, but in the most ironically imaginable way.The whole twist in the tale is that whatever he does to get out of the army, there is a catch, that turns his efforts around, and keeps him from doing so.

The whole story is based on a catch, Catch 22. Yossarian’s aim is to get out of the army, but the only way for him to be sent home, is for him to either be dead, or have gone mad. But he doesn’t want to get home dead, so he refuses to fly any more missions. By refusing to fly any more missions, he would normally be forced to fly even more, so he discounts that possibility. The next possibility for being sent home is if he is crazy, but he is not. If he says that he is, they’ll know that he isn’t, but if he says that he isn’t, they’ll have no reason to doubt him, so it seems as if there is no way out, until he does refuse to fly more missions, is worrying about the consequences, and is called into Colonel Cathcart and Colonel Korn’s office for an important chapter.

The colonels offer him a great deal, if he decides to like them, be friends with them, defend their name and become their “hero”, they’ll send him home. He had not of course yet thought of that possibility, since, although he did regard the system as a bit pathetic, this trurn of events was beyond not onléy his wildest dreams but those of this reader.

The story takes place on an island in the Meditarranean Sea in war time. but that doesn’t really matter. The book is a satire on war and the irony of mankind. it could be set anywhere at anytime. The reader meets and gets to know new, cynical, and stranger characters in each chapter (each named after one of them). Each character is like a puzzle piece to form the final picture of the patheticacy of war.

The tone of the book is extreemely cynical, ironic, and satirical. It shows not only, how stupid war is, but how the organisation of the army is pathetic. The outward, publicized goal of the army is to train men to be honest, obeyant, attentive and to give them things to work for, fight for, and look forwards to. The men are supposed to be fighting for their country, but men such as Yossarian, start to feel that no matter how many missions they fly, their country is not gaining much, though they are risking their lives. Also, their country is represented by cynical, and haughty Colonels, officers and generals, that are not worth fighting for, and give the wrong example of what is to be gained by war.

The idea of Yossarian being sent home a make-believe hero, suggests the fact that there is no reason to fight bravely, the best thing to do, to get promoted or acclaimed , would be to defy the system rather than obey it. Which, is ironic. The subject of the book is serious, that is, war but the matter-of-factness of it all just turns the whole thing into a satire.

-Dominique.B. EN 3:1. 01.05.00

HEMINGWAY, EARNEST				FOR WHOM THE BELL TOLLS
HIMES, CHESTER THE HEAT'S ON
HOBAN, RUSSEL RIDLEY WALKER
HUGHES, LANGSTON LAUGHING TO KEEP FROM CRYING
HUXLEY, ALDOUS BRAVE NEW WORLD

IRVING, JOHN THE WORLD ACCORDING TO GARP
ISHERWOOD, CHRISTOPHER THE BERLIN STORIES

JAMES, HENRY THE APSERN PAPERS
JEROME, JEROME K. THREE MEN IN A BOAT
JHABVALA, J.H. HEAT AND DUST
JOYCE, JAMES PORTRAIT OF THE ARTIST AS A YOUNG MAN

KEASY, KEN ONE FLEW OVER THE CUCKOO'S NEST
KENEALLY, THOMAS SCHINDLER'S LIST
KEROUAC, JACK ON THE ROAD
KINGSTON, MAXINE HONG CHINA MEN
KIPLING, RUDYARD RIKI-TIKI-TAVI
KOSINSKI, JERZY BEING THERE
KöSTLER, ARTHUR DARKNESS AT NOON

LARDNER, RING SELECTED STORIES
especially 'Hair Cut'
LAWRENCE, D. H. SONS AND LOVERS
LE CARRé THE HOROURABLE SCHOOLBOY
LEE, LAURIE CIDER WITH ROSEY
LESSING, DORIS THE GOLDEN NOTEBOOK
LEWIS, SINCLAIR ELMER GANTRY
LLEWELLYN, RICHARD HOW GREEN WAS MY VALLEY
LODGE, DAVID CHANGING PLACES

MACGOYE, MARJORIE OLUDNE COMING TO BIRTH (Out of Print) MACKENZIE, COMPTON WHISKY GALORE
MAILER, NORMAN THE NAKED AND THE DEAD
MALAMUD,BERNARD THE FIXER
MANNING, OLIVIA THE LEVANT TRILOGY
Fight to keep good books in print!
MANSFIELD, KATHERINE STORIES
MAUGHAM, W. SOMERSET OF HUMAN BONDAGE
MC CULLERS, CARSON A MEMBER OF THE WEDDING
REFLECTIONS IN A GOLDEN EYE
Fight to keep good books in print!

MC KAY, CLAUDE BANANA BOTTOM
MELVILLE, HERMAN BILLY BUDD,SAILOR
MERTON, THOMAS THE SEVEN STORY MOUNTAIN
MORRISON, TONI JAZZ
MURDOCH, IRIS A SEVERED HEAD

NABOKOV,VLADIMIR LAUGHTER IN THE DARK
NAIPAUL, V.S. THE MYSTIC MASSEUR

O'CONNOR, FLANNERY THE COMPLETE STORIES
0'HENRY SELECTED STORIES
ORWELL, GEORGE DOWN AND OUT IN PARIS AND LONDON

POWYS, JOHN COWPER WOLF SOLENT
POWYS, T.F. MRS. WESTON’S GOOD WINE (Out of Print) PYNCHON, THOMAS GRAVITY'S RAINBOW

RICHARDSON, SAMUEL PAMELA
RUNYON, DAMON GUYS AND DOLLS & OTHER STORIES
RUSHDIE, SALAMON MIDNIGHT'S CHILDREN

SCOTT, SIR WALTER ROB ROY
SINCLAIR, UPTON MAIN STREET
SINGER, ISSAC BESHEVIS COLLECTED STORIES
STEINBECK, JOHN OF MICE AND MEN

And A Guide

SWIFT, JONATHAN GULLIVER'S TRAVELS

TOLKEIN, J.R.R. LORD OF THE RINGS
TROLLOPE, ANTHONY THE WARDEN
TWAIN, MARK TOM SAWYER

UPDIKE, JOHN PIGEON FEATHERS AND OTHER STORIES

Try some now: a short story by Updike:Click Here.

VONNEGUT, KURT, JR. CAT'S CRADLE

WAUGH, EVLYN DECLINE AND FALL
WELTY, EUDORA COLLECTED STORIES (PENGUIN)
WELLS, H.G. THE INVISIBLE MAN
WILDE, OSCAR THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GREY
WILSON, ANGUS DREAM CHILDREN
WOOLF, VIRGINIA MRS. DALLOWAY
WRIGHT, RICHARD EIGHT MEN and Other Stories
WODEHOUSE, P.G. LEAVE IT TO PSMITH
WYNDHAM, J. MIDWICH CUCKOOS



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