Penguin English Library 

A collection of 100 of the best classics of English Literature, all with elegant, eye-catching cover art.

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    I never have been in love; it is not my way, or my nature; and I do not think I ever shall. Beautiful, clever, rich - and single - Emma Woodhouse is perfectly content with her life and sees no need for either love or marriage. Nothing, however, delights her more than interfering in the romantic lives of others. But when she ignores the warnings of her...

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    A parish child - the orphan of a workhouse - the humble, half-starved drudge - to be cuffed and buffeted through the world, despised by all, and pitied by none. Dark, mysterious and mordantly funny, Oliver Twist features some of the most memorably drawn villains in all of fiction - the treacherous gangmaster Fagin, the menacing thug Bill Sikes, the...

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    The more solitary, the more friendless, the more unsustained I am, the more I will respect myself. Passionate, poetic and revolutionary, Jane Eyre is a novel of naked emotional power. Its story of a defiant, fiercely intelligent woman who refuses to accept her appointed place in society - and instead finds love on her own terms - has become famous as one...

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    In a word, I was too cowardly to do what I knew to be right, as I had been too cowardly to avoid doing what I knew to be wrong. Great Expectations, Dickens's funny, frightening and tender portrayal of the orphan Pip's journey of self-discovery, is one of his best-loved works. Showing how a young man's life is transformed by a mysterious series of events...

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    Never did I behold a vision so horrible as his face, of such loathsome, yet appalling hideousness. A twisted, upside-down creation myth, Mary Shelley's chilling Gothic tale lays bare the dark side of science, and the horror within us all. It tells the story of Victor Frankenstein, who plunders graveyards to create a new being from the bodies of the dead...

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    Fifteen hundred of the Emperor's largest horses, each about four inches and an half high, were employed to draw me towards the Metropolis, which, as I said, was half a Mile distant. A savage and hilarious satire, Gulliver's Travels sees Lemuel Gulliver shipwrecked and adrift, subject to bizarre and unnerving encounters with, among others, quarrelling...

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    I walk'd about on the shore, lifting up my hands, and my whole being, as I may say, wrapt up in the contemplation of my deliverance ... reflecting upon all my comrades that were drown'd, and that there should not be one soul sav'd but my self... Who has not dreamed of life on an exotic isle, far away from civilization? Here is the novel which has...

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    It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife. When Elizabeth Bennet first meets eligible bachelor Fitzwilliam Darcy, she thinks him arrogant and conceited; he is indifferent to her good looks and lively mind. When she later discovers that Darcy has involved himself in the troubled...

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    'Death!' I shouted. 'Death is coming! Death!'. In this pioneering, shocking and nightmarish tale, naïve suburban Londoners investigate a strange cylinder from space, but are instantly incinerated by an all-destroying heat-ray. Soon, gigantic killing machines that chase and feed on human prey are threatening the whole of humanity. A pioneering work of...

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    May you not rest, as long as I am living. You said I killed you - haunt me, then. Lockwood, the new tenant of Thrushcross Grange on the bleak Yorkshire moors, is forced to seek shelter one night at Wuthering Heights, the home of his landlord. There he discovers the history of the tempestuous events that took place years before: of the intense passion...

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    Mr Holmes, they were the footprints of a gigantic hound!The terrible spectacle of the beast, the fog of the moor, the discovery of a body: this classic horror story pits detective against dog, rationalism against the supernatural, good against evil. When Sir Charles Baskerville is found dead on the wild Devon moorland with the footprints of a giant hound...

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    Her attachment and regrets had, for a long time, clouded every enjoyment of youth; and an early loss of bloom and spirits had been their lasting effect. Persuasion, Jane Austen's last novel, is a moving, masterly and elegiac love story tinged with the heartache of missed opportunities. It tells the story of Anne Elliot, who, persuaded to break off her...

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    Alone with the dead! I dare not go out, for I can hear the low howl of the wolf through the broken window. A chilling masterpiece of the horror genre, Dracula also illuminated dark corners of Victorian sexuality. When Jonathan Harker visits Transylvania to advise Count Dracula on a London home, he makes a horrifying discovery. Soon afterwards, a number...

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    I am jealous of everything whose beauty does not die. I am jealous of the portrait you have painted of me... Why did you paint it? It will mock me some day - mock me horribly! A story of evil, debauchery and scandal, Oscar Wilde's only novel tells of Dorian Gray, a beautiful yet corrupt man. When he wishes that a perfect portrait of himself would bear...

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    Madness and despair! Give me that for a lever, and I'll move the world. In the only novel Conrad set in London, The Secret Agent communicates a profoundly ironic view of human affairs. The story is woven around an attack on the Greenwich Observatory in 1894 masterminded by Verloc, a Russian spy working for the police, and ostensibly a member of an...

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    Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast. 'I had sent my heroine straight down a rabbit-hole ... without the least idea what was to happen afterwards,' wrote Lewis Carroll, describing how Alice was conjured up one 'golden afternoon' in 1862 to entertain his child-friend Alice Liddell. His dream worlds of nonsensical...

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    Liberty, equality, fraternity, or death; - the last, much the easiest to bestow, O Guillotine! Described by Dickens as 'the best story I have written', A Tale of Two Cities interweaves thrilling historical drama with heartbreaking personal tragedy. It vividly depicts a revolutionary Paris running red with blood, and a London where the poor starve. In the...

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    He knew the wonderful walled city of Lahore from the Delhi Gate to the outer Fort Ditch; was hand in glove with men who led lives stranger than anything Haroun al Raschid dreamed of; and he lived in a life wild as that of the Arabian Nights... Kipling's epic rendition of the imperial experience in India is also his greatest long work. Two men - Kim, a...

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    But indeed I would rather have nothing but tea. Taken from the poverty of her parents' home in Portsmouth, Fanny Price is brought up with her rich cousins at Mansfield Park, acutely aware of her humble rank and with her cousin Edmund as her sole ally. During her uncle's absence in Antigua, the Crawford's arrive in the neighbourhood bringing with them the...

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    The more I know of the world, the more am I convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much! Jane Austen's novel tells the story of Marianne Dashwood, who wears her heart on her sleeve, and when she falls in love with the dashing but unsuitable John Willoughby she ignores her sister Elinor's warning that her impulsive...

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    The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid. During an eventful season at Bath, young, naïve Catherine Morland experiences the joys of fashionable society for the first time. She is delighted with her new acquaintances: flirtatious Isabella, who shares Catherine's love of Gothic romance and...

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    Mrs. Dalloway said she would buy the flowers herself. On a June morning in 1923, Clarissa Dalloway is preparing for a party and remembering her past. Elsewhere in London, Septimus Smith is suffering from shell-shock and on the brink of madness. Their days interweave and their lives converge as the party reaches its glittering climax. Here, Virginia Woolf...

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    The Lighthouse was then a silvery, misty-looking tower with a yellow eye that opened suddenly and softly in the evening. To the Lighthouse is at once a vivid impressionistic depiction of a family holiday, and a meditation on marriage, on parenthood and childhood, on grief, tyranny and bitterness. For years now the Ramsays have spent every summer in their...

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    All children, except one, grow up. It was Friday night. Mr and Mrs Darling were dining out. Nana had been tied up in the backyard. The poor dog was barking, for she could smell danger. And she was right - this was the night that Peter Pan would take the Darling children on the most breath-taking adventure of their lives, to a place called Neverland, a...

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    All human beings, as we meet them, are commingled out of good and evil: and Edward Hyde, alone in the ranks of mankind, was pure evil.Published as a 'shilling shocker', Robert Louis Stevenson's dark psychological fantasy gave birth to the idea of the split personality. The story of respectable Dr Jekyll's strange association with 'damnable young man'...

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    Who controls the past controls the future: who controls the present controls the past. Hidden away in the Record Department of the sprawling Ministry of Truth, Winston Smith skilfully rewrites the past to suit the needs of the Party. Yet he inwardly rebels against the totalitarian world he lives in, which demands absolute obedience and controls him...

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    A dense yellow miasma swirls in the streets of London as Sherlock Holmes and Dr Watson accompany a beautiful young woman to a sinister assignation. For Mary Marston has received several large pearls - one a year for the last six years - and now a mystery letter telling her she is a wronged woman. If she would seek justice she is to meet her unknown...

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    When Dr John Watson takes rooms in Baker Street with amateur detective Sherlock Holmes, he has no idea that he is about to enter a shadowy world of criminality and violence. Accompanying Holmes to an ill-omened house in south London, Watson is startled to find a dead man whose face is contorted in a rictus of horror. There is no mark of violence on the...

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    A new Penguin English Library edition of Jane Austen's tantalizing final work. Written in the last months of Austen's life, Sanditon features a glorious cast of hypochondriacs and speculators in a newly established seaside resort, and shows the author contemplating a changing society with scepticism and amusement. It tells the story of Charlotte Heywood,...

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    Dickens's epic, exuberant novel is one of the greatest coming-of-age stories in literature. It chronicles David Copperfield's extraordinary journey through life, as he encounters villains, saviours, eccentrics and grotesques, including the wicked Mr Murdstone, stout-hearted Peggotty, formidable Betsey Trotwood, impecunious Micawber and odious Uriah Heep....

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    All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others. When the downtrodden animals of Manor Farm overthrow their master Mr Jones and take over the farm themselves, they imagine it is the beginning of a life of freedom and equality. But gradually a cunning, ruthless élite among them, masterminded by the pigs Napoleon and Snowball, starts to...

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    Every idiot who goes around with 'Merry Christmas' on his lips, should be boiled with his own pudding.Charles Dickens's tale of Ebenezer Scrooge, who is haunted by three spirits and learns the true meaning of Christmas has had, along with Dickens's other Christmas writings, a lasting and significant influence upon our ideas about the season as a time for...

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    I'm not afraid of storms, for I'm learning how to sail my ship. Meg, Jo, Amy and Beth - four "little women" enduring hardships and enjoying adventures in Civil War New England The charming story of the March sisters, Little Women has been adored by generations. Readers have rooted for Laurie in his pursuit of Jo's hand, cried over little Beth's death,...

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    Books, indeed, were his sole luxuries. Horror, madness, violence and the dark forces hidden in humanity abound in this collection of Poe's brilliant tales, including - among others - the bloody, brutal and baffling murder of a mother and daughter in Paris in 'The Murders in the Rue Morgue', the creeping insanity of 'The Tell-Tale Heart', the Gothic...

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    Shame, Despair, Solitude! These had been her teachers, - stern and wild ones, - and they had made her strong, but taught her much amiss. Fiercely romantic and hugely influential, The Scarlet Letter is the tale of Hester Prynne, imprisoned, publicly shamed, and forced to wear a scarlet 'A' for committing adultery and bearing an illegitimate child, Pearl....

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    It was one of those rare smiles with a quality of eternal reassurance in it, that you may come across four or five times in life. Jay Gatsby is the man who has everything. But one thing will always be out of his reach ... Everybody who is anybody is seen at his glittering parties. Day and night his Long Island mansion buzzes with bright young things...

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    The frail gunwales bent in, collapsed, and snapped, as both jaws, like an enormous shears, sliding further aft, bit the craft completely in twain... Moby-Dick is one of the most expansive feats of imagination in the whole of literature: the mad, raging, Shakespearean tale of Captain Ahab's insane quest to kill a giant white whale that has taken his leg,...

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    Jane Austen's masterworks in a single beautiful Penguin English Library volume. Few novelists have observed their society with the wit and insight of Jane Austen. This volume brings together her seven great novels: Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma, Northanger Abbey, Persuasion and Lady Susan. Ironic, comic and wise, these...

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