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La plage

Author Alain Robbe-Grillet Title La plage Year 1962 Alain Robbe Grillet (1922-2008) was a French author, one of the leading figures in the nouveau roman literary movement, and since 2004 member of the Académie française. His best-known novels are Le Voyeur and La Jalousie. Robbe-Grillet also wrote short stories and screenplays, including L’Année dernière à...

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Crime and punishment

Author Fyodor Dostoevsky Title Crime and punishment Year 1866 Original title Преступление и наказание Translation Crime and punishment, English translation by Constance Garnett Fyodor Mikhailovich Dostoevsky (1821-1861) was a Russian novelist. His novels depict life in 19th century urban Russia. His characters are often poor, working class people (unlike Tolstoy’s...

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For whom the bell tolls

Author Ernest Hemingway Title For whom the bell tolls Year 1940 Ernest Hemingway (1899-1961) was an American journalist, short story author and novelist. In the 1920s he became part of the American expatriate literary community in Paris (sometimes known as The lost generation). In the 1930s, he became war correspondent in Europe, first during the civil war in Spain (he...

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As I lay dying

Author William Faulkner Title As I lay dying Year 1930 William Faulkner (1897-1962) was an American novelist and poet. He is probably the second-most influential Southern author (after Twain). His experimental use of literary devices – in particular stream of consciousness – makes his work often difficult to understand. He won the 1949 Nobel prize for...

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Southern reading challenge

August was for me the month of the Southern reading challenge: With a bottle of Southern Comfort, a large box of Southern pecans and three books I enjoyed a month of Southern literature. The masterpieces I read: The adventures of Huckleberry Finn, by Mark Twain. This novel has been on my to-be-read list ever since high school (and I can assure you that is quite a while...

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To kill a mockingbird

Author Harper Lee Title To kill a mockingbird Year 1960 Harper Lee (b. 1926) is the first living artist to make an appearance on Masterpieces. She wrote just one novel, To kill a mockingbird. The novel was an instant bestseller and won her the 1961 Pulitzer prize. It was voted “Best novel of the century” by readers of the library journal. The story is set in...

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Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

Author Mark Twain Title Adventures of Huckleberry Finn Year 1884 Mark Twain is the pen name of Samuel Langhorne Clemens (1835-1910). With his novels The adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, Twain became one of the best-known American authors. Huckleberry Finn starts with a rather severe warning: Persons attempting to find a motive in this...

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A midsummer night’s dream

All that we see or seem Is but a dream within a dream. E.A. Poe Author William Shakespeare Title A midsummer night’s dream Year c.1596 With the reading of Shakespeare’s Midsummer night’s dream, I completed the 2007 Once upon a time challenge. You don’t read (or watch) Shakespeare for the plots, and you certainly do not read A midsummer...

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A clod of clay

Author William Blake Title The clod and the pebble Year 1794 The year 1789 is engraved on the second plate of The book of Thel (discussed yesterday). This is the same year the Songs of innocence were published. The motto and the conclusion of The book of Thel seem to be from a later date. Apparently Blake changed the ending (and added a motto) while he was working on the...

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Thel

Author William Blake Title The book of Thel Year 1789 Thel’s motto: Does the eagle know what is in the pit, or wilt thou go ask the mole? Can wisdom be put in a silver rod, or love in a golden bowl? William Blake William Blake (1757-1827) was an English poet, engraver, and painter. He illustrated, engraved, printed and hand-coloured his own poems. Blake is best...

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War and peace

Author Leo Tolstoy Title War and peace Year 1865-1869 Original title Война и мир (Voyna i mir) Translation Oorlog en vrede, Dutch translation by René de Vries Yasnaya Polyana Leo Tolstoy (or Tolstoi) is considered one of the greatest novelists of all times, mainly because of his two masterpieces, War and peace and Anna Karenina. He was born in 1828 at the Yasnaya Polyana...

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Jorinde und Joringel

Author Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm Title Jorinde und Joringel The Grimm brothers Jakob Grimm (1785-1863) and Wilhelm Grimm (1786-1859) were two German professors working mostly in linguistics. They are best known, however, for their collection of folk tales and fairy tales. They collected German and French tales that were probably handed down orally for many generations, and...

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