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Paul Alkon analyzes several key works that mark the most significant phases in the early evolution of science fiction, including Frankenstein, Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, A Connecticut Yankee in King arthur's Court and The Time Machine. He places the work in context and discusses the genre and its relation to other kinds of literature.

From renowned historian, biographer and novelist, A.N. Wilson, a deep personal, literary, and historical exploration of the Bible. In The Book of the People, A. N. Wilson explores how readers and thinkers have approached the Bible, and how it might be read today. Charting his own relationship with the Bible over a lifetime of writing, Wilson argues that it remains relevant even in a largely secular society, as a philosophical work, a... more...

Postmodern fiction presents a challenge to the reader: instead of enjoying it passively, the reader has to work to understand its meanings, to think about what fiction is, and to question their own responses. Yet this very challenge makes postmodern writing so much fun to read and rewarding to study. Unlike most introductions to postmodernism and fiction, this book places the emphasis on literature rather than theory. It introduces the most prominent... more...

How did Kafka become Kafka? This eagerly anticipated third and final volume of Reiner Stach's definitive biography of the writer answers that question with more facts and insight than ever before, describing the complex personal, political, and cultural circumstances that shaped the young Franz Kafka (1883-1924). It tells the story of the years from his birth in Prague to the beginning of his professional and literary career in 1910,... more...


From the author of the beloved New York Times best-selling The End of Your Life Book Club, an inspiring and magical exploration of the power of books to shape our lives in an era of constant connectivity. Why is it that we read? Is it to pass time? To learn something new? To escape from reality? For Will Schwalbe, reading is a way to entertain himself but also to make sense of the world, to become a better person, and to find the answers to the big... more...

The sequel to Even Monkeys Full from Trees offers another 100 new translations of insightful Japanese proverbs. Both instructional and fun, this collection is a perfect taste of Eastern philosophy for the Western palate.

Marco Santagata’s Dante: The Story of His Life illuminates one of the world’s supreme poets from many angles―writer, philosopher, father, courtier, political partisan. Santagata brings together a vast body of Italian scholarship on Dante’s medieval world, untangles a complex web of family and political relationships for English readers, and shows how the composition of the Commedia was influenced by local and regional... more...

A fascinating account of the friendship between two of the most brilliant minds of the twentieth century Germany in the mid 1920s, a place and time of looming turmoil, brought together Walter Benjamin—acclaimed critic and extraordinary literary theorist—and Bertolt Brecht, one of the twentieth century’s most influential playwrights. It was a friendship that would shape their writing for the rest of their lives. In this groundbreaking work,... more...

Lucinda Cole’s Imperfect Creatures offers the first full-length study of the shifting, unstable, but foundational status of “vermin” as creatures and category in the early modern literary, scientific, and political imagination. In the space between theology and an emergent empiricism, Cole’s argument engages a wide historical swath of canonical early modern literary texts—William Shakespeare’s Macbeth,... more...