The Lost Books Of The Odyssey

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The Lost Books of the Odyssey

The Lost Books of the Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author:
Editor: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 9781429952491
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The Lost Books of the Odyssey by Summary

A BRILLIANT AND BEGUILING REIMAGINING OF ONE OF OUR GREATEST MYTHS BY A GIFTED YOUNG WRITER Zachary Mason's brilliant and beguiling debut novel, The Lost Books of the Odyssey, reimagines Homer's classic story of the hero Odysseus and his long journey home after the fall of Troy. With brilliant prose, terrific imagination, and dazzling literary skill, Mason creates alternative episodes, fragments, and revisions of Homer's original that taken together open up this classic Greek myth to endless reverberating interpretations. The Lost Books of the Odyssey is punctuated with great wit, beauty, and playfulness; it is a daring literary page-turner that marks the emergence of an extraordinary new talent.

Metamorphica

Metamorphica Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Zachary Mason
Editor: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374709831
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Metamorphica by Zachary Mason Summary

A brilliant and daring novel that reimagines Ovid’s Metamorphoses In the tradition of his bestselling debut novel The Lost Books of the Odyssey, Zachary Mason’s Metamorphica transforms Ovid’s epic poem of endless transformation. It reimagines the stories of Narcissus, Pygmalion and Galatea, Midas and Atalanta, and strings them together like the stars in constellations—even Ovid becomes a story. It’s as though the ancient mythologies had been rewritten by Borges or Calvino; Metamorphica is an archipelago in which to linger for a while; it reflects a little light from the morning of the world.

The Last Odyssey

The Last Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author: James Rollins
Editor: HarperCollins
ISBN: 0062892908
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The Last Odyssey by James Rollins Summary

To save the world and our future, Sigma Force must embark on a dangerous odyssey into an ancient past whose horrors are all too present in this page-turning thriller from #1 New York Times bestselling author James Rollins that combines cutting-edge science, historical mystery, mythology, and pulse-pounding action. For eons, the city of Troy—whose legendary fall was detailed in Homer’s Iliad—was believed to be myth, until archaeologists in the nineteenth century uncovered its ancient walls buried beneath the sands. If Troy was real, how much of Homer’s twin tales of gods and monsters, curses and miracles—The Iliad and The Odyssey—could also be true and awaiting discovery? In the frozen tundra of Greenland, a group of modern-day researchers stumble on a shocking find: a medieval ship buried a half-mile below the ice. The ship’s hold contains a collection of even older artifacts—tools of war—dating back to the Bronze Age. Inside the captain’s cabin is a magnificent treasure that is as priceless as it is miraculous: a clockwork gold map imbedded with an intricate silver astrolabe. The mechanism was crafted by a group of Muslim inventors—the Banū Mūsā brothers—considered by many to be the Da Vincis of the Arab world—brilliant scientists who inspired Leonardo’s own work. Once activated, the moving map traces the path of Odysseus’s famous ship as it sailed away from Troy. But the route detours as the map opens to reveal a fiery river leading to a hidden realm underneath the Mediterranean Sea. It is the subterranean world of Tartarus, the Greek name for Hell. In mythology, Tartarus was where the wicked were punished and the monstrous Titans of old, imprisoned. When word of Tartarus spreads—and of the cache of miraculous weapons said to be hidden there—tensions explode in this volatile region where Turks battle Kurds, terrorists wage war, and civilians suffer untold horrors. The phantasmagoric horrors found in Homer’s tales are all too real—and could be unleashed upon the world. Whoever possesses them can use their awesome power to control the future of humanity. Now, Sigma Force must go where humans fear to tread. To prevent a tyrant from igniting a global war, they must cross the very gates of Hell.

An Odyssey

An Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Daniel Mendelsohn
Editor: Signal
ISBN: 0771057431
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An Odyssey by Daniel Mendelsohn Summary

From award-winning memoirist and critic, and bestselling author of The Lost, comes a deeply moving tale of a father and son's transformative journey in reading -- and reliving -- Homer's epic masterpiece. When eighty-one-year-old Jay Mendelsohn decides to enroll in the undergraduate Odyssey seminar his son teaches at Bard College, the two find themselves on an adventure as profoundly emotional as it is intellectual. For Jay, a retired research scientist who sees the world through a mathematician's unforgiving eyes, this return to the classroom is his "one last chance" to learn the great literature he'd neglected in his youth -- and, even more, a final opportunity to more fully understand his son, a writer and classicist. But through the sometimes uncomfortable months that the two men explore Homer's great work together -- first in the classroom, where Jay persistently challenges his son's interpretations, and then during a surprise-filled Mediterranean journey retracing Odysseus's famous voyages -- it becomes clear that Daniel has much to learn, too: Jay's responses to both the text and the travels gradually uncover long-buried secrets that allow the son to understand his difficult father at last. As this intricately woven memoir builds to its wrenching climax, Mendelsohn's narrative comes to deeply echo The Odyssey itself, with its timeless themes of deception and recognition, marriage and children, the pleasures of travel, and the meaning of home. Rich with literary and emotional insight, An Odyssey is a renowned author-scholar's most triumphant entwining yet of personal narrative and literary exploration.

The Book of Lost Things

The Book of Lost Things Pdf/ePub eBook Author: John Connolly
Editor: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 1416542752
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The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly Summary

New York Times bestselling author John Connolly's unique imagination takes readers through the end of innocence into adulthood and beyond in this dark and triumphantly creative novel of grief and loss, loyalty and love, and the redemptive power of stories. High in his attic bedroom, twelve-year-old David mourns the death of his mother. He is angry and alone, with only the books on his shelf for company. But those books have begun to whisper to him in the darkness, and as he takes refuge in his imagination, he finds that reality and fantasy have begun to meld. While his family falls apart around him, David is violently propelled into a land that is a strange reflection of his own world, populated by heroes and monsters, and ruled over by a faded king who keeps his secrets in a mysterious book... The Book of Lost Things. An imaginative tribute to the journey we must all make through the loss of innocence into adulthood, John Connolly's latest novel is a book for every adult who can recall the moment when childhood began to fade, and for every adult about to face that moment. The Book of Lost Things is a story of hope for all who have lost, and for all who have yet to lose. It is an exhilarating tale that reminds us of the enduring power of stories in our lives.

Three Rings

Three Rings Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Daniel Mendelsohn
Editor: University of Virginia Press
ISBN: 0813944678
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Three Rings by Daniel Mendelsohn Summary

In this genre-defying book, best-selling memoirist and critic Daniel Mendelsohn explores the mysterious links between the randomness of the lives we lead and the artfulness of the stories we tell. Combining memoir, biography, history, and literary criticism, Three Rings weaves together the stories of three exiled writers who turned to the classics of the past to create masterpieces of their own—works that pondered the nature of narrative itself. Erich Auerbach, the Jewish philologist who fled Hitler’s Germany and wrote his classic study of Western literature, Mimesis, in Istanbul... François Fénelon, the seventeenth-century French archbishop whose ingenious sequel to the Odyssey, The Adventures of Telemachus—a veiled critique of the Sun King and the best-selling book in Europe for one hundred years—resulted in his banishment... and the German novelist W. G. Sebald, self-exiled to England, whose distinctively meandering narratives explore Odyssean themes of displacement, nostalgia, and separation from home. Intertwined with these tales of exile and artistic crisis is an account of Mendelsohn’s struggles to write two of his own books—a family saga of the Holocaust and a memoir about reading the Odyssey with his elderly father—that are haunted by tales of oppression and wandering. As Three Rings moves to its startling conclusion, a climactic revelation about the way in which the lives of its three heroes were linked across borders, languages, and centuries forces the reader to reconsider the relationship between narrative and history, art and life. -- Ayad Akhtar

The Buried Book

The Buried Book Pdf/ePub eBook Author: David Damrosch
Editor: Henry Holt and Company
ISBN: 142992389X
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The Buried Book by David Damrosch Summary

Adventurers, explorers, kings, gods, and goddesses come to life in this riveting story of the first great epic—lost to the world for 2,000 years, and rediscovered in the nineteenth century Composed by a poet and priest in Middle Babylonia around 1200 bce, The Epic of Gilgamesh foreshadowed later stories that would become as fundamental as any in human history, The Odyssey and the Bible. But in 600 bce, the clay tablets that bore the story were lost—buried beneath ashes and ruins when the library of the wild king Ashurbanipal was sacked in a raid. The Buried Book begins with the rediscovery of the epic and its deciphering in 1872 by George Smith, a brilliant self-taught linguist who created a sensation when he discovered Gilgamesh among the thousands of tablets in the British Museum's collection. From there the story goes backward in time, all the way to Gilgamesh himself. Damrosch reveals the story as a literary bridge between East and West: a document lost in Babylonia, discovered by an Iraqi, decoded by an Englishman, and appropriated in novels by both Philip Roth and Saddam Hussein. This is an illuminating, fast-paced tale of history as it was written, stolen, lost, and—after 2,000 years, countless battles, fevered digs, conspiracies, and revelations—finally found.

The Making of the Odyssey

The Making of the Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author: M. L. West
Editor: OUP Oxford
ISBN: 0191028150
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The Making of the Odyssey by M. L. West Summary

The poet of the Odyssey was a seriously flawed genius. He had a wonderfully inventive imagination, a gift for pictorial detail and for introducing naturalistic elements into epic dialogue, and a grand architectural plan for the poem. He was also a slapdash artist, often copying verses from the Iliad or from himself without close attention to their suitability. With various possible ways of telling the story bubbling up in his mind, he creates a narrative marked by constant inconsistency of detail. He is a fluent composer who delights in prolonging his tale with subsidiary episodes, yet his deployment of the epic language is often inept and sometimes simply unintelligible. The Making of the Odyssey is a penetrating study of the background, composition, and artistry of the Homeric Odyssey. Martin West places the poem in its late seventh-century context in relation to the Iliad and other poetry of the time. He also investigates the traditions that lie behind it: the origins of the figure of Odysseus, and folk tales such as those of the One-eyed Ogre and the Husband's Return.

The Forgotten Books Of Eden

The Forgotten Books Of Eden Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Rutherford H. Platt
Editor: Jazzybee Verlag
ISBN: 3849621855
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The Forgotten Books Of Eden by Rutherford H. Platt Summary

This is the extended and annotated edition including * an extensive annotation of more than 5.000 words about the history and evolution of the book we call 'The Bible' * an interactive table-of-contents * perfect formatting for electronic reading devices This edition contains a selection of Apocrypha. Contents: The First Book Of Adam And Eve The Second Book Of Adam And Eve The Book Of The Secrets Of Enoch. The Psalms Of Solomon The Odes Of Solomon. The Letter Of Aristeas Fourth Book Of Maccabees The Story Of Ahikar The Testaments Of The Twelve Patriarchs Testament Of Reuben Testament Of Simeon Testament Of Levi The Testament Of Judah The Testament Of Issachar The Testament Of Zebulun The Testament Of Dan The Testament Of Naphtali The Testament Of Gad The Testament Of Asher The Testament Of Joseph The Testament Of Benjamin

The Odyssey

The Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Homer
Editor: Phoemixx Classics Ebooks
ISBN: 3985948208
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The Odyssey by Homer Summary

The Odyssey - Homer - "Wilson's language is fresh, unpretentious and lean...It is rare to find a translation that is at once so effortlessly easy to read and so rigorously considered." —Madeline Miller, author of Circe Composed at the rosy-fingered dawn of world literature almost three millennia ago, The Odyssey is a poem about violence and the aftermath of war; about wealth, poverty and power; about marriage and family; about travelers, hospitality, and the yearning for home. This fresh, authoritative translation captures the beauty of this ancient poem as well as the drama of its narrative. Its characters are unforgettable, none more so than the "complicated" hero himself, a man of many disguises, many tricks, and many moods, who emerges in this version as a more fully rounded human being than ever before. Written in iambic pentameter verse and a vivid, contemporary idiom, Emily Wilson's Odyssey sings with a voice that echoes Homer's music; matching the number of lines in the Greek original, the poem sails along at Homer's swift, smooth pace. A fascinating, informative introduction explores the Bronze Age milieu that produced the epic, the poem's major themes, the controversies about its origins, and the unparalleled scope of its impact and influence. Maps drawn especially for this volume, a pronunciation glossary, and extensive notes and summaries of each book make this is an Odyssey that will be treasured by a new generation of readers.

The Land of Stories: An Author's Odyssey

The Land of Stories: An Author's Odyssey Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Chris Colfer
Editor: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
ISBN: 0316383201
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The Land of Stories: An Author's Odyssey by Chris Colfer Summary

The fifth book in Chris Colfer's #1 New York Times bestselling series The Land of Stories! The Masked Man has captured all the royal families from the Land of Stories with the help of his army of literature's greatest villains, including the Wicked Witch of the West, the Queen of Hearts, and Captain Hook. With his sinister plan finally in motion, he is eager to destroy the families and take his place as emperor. Alex and Conner know they are no match against the Masked Man's legion of villains, but they realize that they may be in possession of the greatest weapon of all: their own imaginations! So begins the twins' journey into Conner's very own stories to gather an army of pirates, cyborgs, superheroes, and mummies as they band together for the ultimate fight against the Masked Man. Meanwhile, an even more dangerous plan is brewing--one that could change the fates of both the fairy-tale world and the Otherworld forever. Conner's tales come alive in the thrilling fifth adventure in the #1 New York Times bestselling Land of Stories series.

Ulysses

Ulysses Pdf/ePub eBook Author: James Joyce
Editor: Graphic Arts Books
ISBN: 1513265199
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Ulysses by James Joyce Summary

"I hold this book to be the most important expression which the present age has found; it is a book to which we are all indebted, and from which none of us can escape." T.S. Eliot Ulysses depicts a day in Leopold Bloom’s life, broken into episodes analogous to Homer’s Odyssey and related in rich, varied styles. Joyce’s novel is celebrated for its depth of learning, earthy humor, literary allusions and piercing insight into the human heart. First published in Paris in 1922 Ulysses was not published in the United States until 1934. Immediately recognized as an extraordinary work that both echoed the history of English literature and took it in new, unheralded directions, Joyce’s book was controversial. Its widespread release was initially slowed by censors nitpicking a few passages. The novel is challenging, in that it is an uncommon reader who will perceive all that Joyce has put into his pages upon first reading, but it is uniquely rewarding for anyone willing to follow where the author leads. Far more than a learned exercise in literary skill, Ulysses displays a sense of humor that ranges from delicate to roguish as well as sequences of striking beauty and emotion. Chief among the latter must be the novel’s climactic stream of consciousness step into the mind of the protagonist’s wife, Molly Bloom, whose open-hearted acceptance of life and love is among the most memorable and moving passages in English literature. With an eye-catching new cover, and professionally typeset manuscript, this edition of Ulysses is both modern and readable.

The Book of Lost Friends

The Book of Lost Friends Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Lisa Wingate
Editor: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 1984819895
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The Book of Lost Friends by Lisa Wingate Summary

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the bestselling author of Before We Were Yours comes a dramatic historical novel of three young women searching for family amid the destruction of the post–Civil War South, and of a modern-day teacher who learns of their story and its vital connection to her students’ lives. “An absorbing historical . . . enthralling.”—Library Journal Bestselling author Lisa Wingate brings to life startling stories from actual “Lost Friends” advertisements that appeared in Southern newspapers after the Civil War, as newly freed slaves desperately searched for loved ones who had been sold away. Louisiana, 1875: In the tumultuous era of Reconstruction, three young women set off as unwilling companions on a perilous quest: Hannie, a freed slave; Lavinia, the pampered heir to a now destitute plantation; and Juneau Jane, Lavinia’s Creole half sister. Each carries private wounds and powerful secrets as they head for Texas, following roads rife with vigilantes and soldiers still fighting a war lost a decade before. For Lavinia and Juneau Jane, the journey is one of stolen inheritance and financial desperation, but for Hannie, torn from her mother and siblings before slavery’s end, the pilgrimage west reignites an agonizing question: Could her long-lost family still be out there? Beyond the swamps lie the limitless frontiers of Texas and, improbably, hope. Louisiana, 1987: For first-year teacher Benedetta Silva, a subsidized job at a poor rural school seems like the ticket to canceling her hefty student debt—until she lands in a tiny, out-of-step Mississippi River town. Augustine, Louisiana, is suspicious of new ideas and new people, and Benny can scarcely comprehend the lives of her poverty-stricken students. But amid the gnarled live oaks and run-down plantation homes lie the century-old history of three young women, a long-ago journey, and a hidden book that could change everything.

Void Star

Void Star Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Zachary Mason
Editor: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
ISBN: 0374709823
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Void Star by Zachary Mason Summary

A riveting, beautifully written, fugue-like novel of AIs, memory, violence, and mortality Not far in the future the seas have risen and the central latitudes are emptying, but it’s still a good time to be rich in San Francisco, where weapons drones patrol the skies to keep out the multitudinous poor. Irina isn’t rich, not quite, but she does have an artificial memory that gives her perfect recall and lets her act as a medium between her various employers and their AIs, which are complex to the point of opacity. It’s a good gig, paying enough for the annual visits to the Mayo Clinic that keep her from aging. Kern has no such access; he’s one of the many refugees in the sprawling drone-built favelas on the city’s periphery, where he lives like a monk, training relentlessly in martial arts, scraping by as a thief and an enforcer. Thales is from a different world entirely—the mathematically inclined scion of a Brazilian political clan, he’s fled to L.A. after the attack that left him crippled and his father dead. A ragged stranger accosts Thales and demands to know how much he can remember. Kern flees for his life after robbing the wrong mark. Irina finds a secret in the reflection of a laptop’s screen in her employer’s eyeglasses. None are safe as they’re pushed together by subtle forces that stay just out of sight. Vivid, tumultuous, and propulsive, Void Star is Zachary Mason’s mind-bending follow-up to his bestselling debut, The Lost Books of the Odyssey.

Into the Wild

Into the Wild Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Jon Krakauer
Editor: Anchor
ISBN: 0307476863
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Into the Wild by Jon Krakauer Summary

Krakauer’s page-turning bestseller explores a famed missing person mystery while unraveling the larger riddles it holds: the profound pull of the American wilderness on our imagination; the allure of high-risk activities to young men of a certain cast of mind; the complex, charged bond between fathers and sons. "Terrifying... Eloquent... A heart-rending drama of human yearning." —New York Times In April 1992 a young man from a well-to-do family hitchhiked to Alaska and walked alone into the wilderness north of Mt. McKinley. He had given $25,000 in savings to charity, abandoned his car and most of his possessions, burned all the cash in his wallet, and invented a new life for himself. Four months later, his decomposed body was found by a moose hunter. How Christopher Johnson McCandless came to die is the unforgettable story of Into the Wild. Immediately after graduating from college in 1991, McCandless had roamed through the West and Southwest on a vision quest like those made by his heroes Jack London and John Muir. In the Mojave Desert he abandoned his car, stripped it of its license plates, and burned all of his cash. He would give himself a new name, Alexander Supertramp, and, unencumbered by money and belongings, he would be free to wallow in the raw, unfiltered experiences that nature presented. Craving a blank spot on the map, McCandless simply threw the maps away. Leaving behind his desperate parents and sister, he vanished into the wild. Jon Krakauer constructs a clarifying prism through which he reassembles the disquieting facts of McCandless's short life. Admitting an interst that borders on obsession, he searches for the clues to the drives and desires that propelled McCandless. When McCandless's innocent mistakes turn out to be irreversible and fatal, he becomes the stuff of tabloid headlines and is dismissed for his naiveté, pretensions, and hubris. He is said to have had a death wish but wanting to die is a very different thing from being compelled to look over the edge. Krakauer brings McCandless's uncompromising pilgrimage out of the shadows, and the peril, adversity, and renunciation sought by this enigmatic young man are illuminated with a rare understanding--and not an ounce of sentimentality. Mesmerizing, heartbreaking, Into the Wild is a tour de force. The power and luminosity of Jon Krakauer's stoytelling blaze through every page.

The Cyclops

The Cyclops Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Euripides
Editor: BEYOND BOOKS HUB
ISBN: 2021071111
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The Cyclops by Euripides Summary

The Cyclops is an Ancient Greek satyr play by Euripides, the only complete satyr play that has survived. It is a comical burlesque-like play on a story that occurs in book nine of Homer's Odyssey. Odysseus has lost his way on the voyage home from the Trojan War. He and his hungry crew make a stop in Sicily at Mount Aetna, which is inhabited by Cyclopes. They come upon the Satyrs and their father Silenus, who have been separated from their god Dionysus and enslaved by a Cyclops.

Circe

Circe Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Madeline Miller
Editor: Little, Brown
ISBN: 0316556335
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Circe by Madeline Miller Summary

"A bold and subversive retelling of the goddess's story," this #1 New York Times bestseller is "both epic and intimate in its scope, recasting the most infamous female figure from the Odyssey as a hero in her own right" (Alexandra Alter, The New York Times). In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child -- not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power -- the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves. Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus. But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love. With unforgettably vivid characters, mesmerizing language, and page-turning suspense, Circe is a triumph of storytelling, an intoxicating epic of family rivalry, palace intrigue, love and loss, as well as a celebration of indomitable female strength in a man's world. #1 New York Times Bestseller -- named one of the Best Books of the Year by NPR, the Washington Post, People, Time, Amazon, Entertainment Weekly, Bustle, Newsweek, the A.V. Club, Christian Science Monitor, Refinery 29, Buzzfeed, Paste, Audible, Kirkus, Publishers Weekly, Thrillist, NYPL, Self, Real Simple, Goodreads, Boston Globe, Electric Literature, BookPage, the Guardian, Book Riot, Seattle Times, and Business Insider.

The Lost Books of Jane Austen

The Lost Books of Jane Austen Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Janine Barchas
Editor: JHU Press
ISBN: 1421431602
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The Lost Books of Jane Austen by Janine Barchas Summary

Thoroughly innovative and occasionally irreverent, this book will appeal in equal measure to book historians, Austen fans, and scholars of literary celebrity.

A Handbook to the Reception of Classical Mythology

A Handbook to the Reception of Classical Mythology Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Vanda Zajko,Helena Hoyle
Editor: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1119072115
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A Handbook to the Reception of Classical Mythology by Vanda Zajko,Helena Hoyle Summary

A Handbook to the Reception of Classical Mythology presents a collection of essays that explore a wide variety of aspects of Greek and Roman myths and their critical reception from antiquity to the present day. Reveals the importance of mythography to the survival, dissemination, and popularization of classical myth from the ancient world to the present day Features chronologically organized essays that address different sets of myths that were important in each historical era, along with their thematic relevance Features chronologically organized essays that address different sets of myths that were important in each historical era, along with their thematic relevance Offers a series of carefully selected in-depth readings, including both popular and less well-known examples

Waiting for the Barbarians

Waiting for the Barbarians Pdf/ePub eBook Author: Daniel Mendelsohn
Editor: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 159017609X
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Waiting for the Barbarians by Daniel Mendelsohn Summary

FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD AND THE PEN ART OF THE ESSAY AWARD Over the past decade and a half, Daniel Mendelsohn’s reviews for The New York Review of Books, The New Yorker, and The New York Times Book Review have earned him a reputation as “one of the greatest critics of our time” (Poets & Writers). In Waiting for the Barbarians, he brings together twenty-four of his recent essays—each one glinting with “verve and sparkle,” “acumen and passion”—on a wide range of subjects, from Avatar to the poems of Arthur Rimbaud, from our inexhaustible fascination with the Titanic to Susan Sontag’s Journals. Trained as a classicist, author of two internationally best-selling memoirs, Mendelsohn moves easily from penetrating considerations of the ways in which the classics continue to make themselves felt in contemporary life and letters (Greek myth in the Spider-Man musical, Anne Carson’s translations of Sappho) to trenchant takes on pop spectacles—none more explosively controversial than his dissection of Mad Men. Also gathered here are essays devoted to the art of fiction, from Jonathan Littell’s Holocaust blockbuster The Kindly Ones to forgotten gems like the novels of Theodor Fontane. In a final section, “Private Lives,” prefaced by Mendelsohn’sNew Yorker essay on fake memoirs, he considers the lives and work of writers as disparate as Leo Lerman, Noël Coward, and Jonathan Franzen. Waiting for the Barbarians once again demonstrates that Mendelsohn’s “sweep as a cultural critic is as impressive as his depth.”