A list of books allegedly found on the editor's shelf labelled "essential bathroom reading." This is a list-in-progress. New titles materialize and dematerialize contingent on the editor's memory— Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.
Stephen Mitchell$14.99 $13.79
In eighty-one brief chapters, Lao-tzu's Tao Te Ching, or Book of the Way, provides advice that imparts balance and perspective, a serene and generous spirit, and teaches us how to work for the good with the effortless skill that comes from being in accord with the Tao—the basic principle of the universe. Stephen Mitchell's bestselling version has been widely acclaimed as a gift to contemporary culture.
Helen DeWitt$18.95 $17.43
Sibylla, an American-at-Oxford turned loose on London, finds herself trapped as a single mother after a misguided one-night stand. High-minded principles of child-rearing work disastrously well. J. S. Mill (taught Greek at three) and Yo Yo Ma (Bach at two) claimed the methods would work with any child; when these succeed with the boy Ludo, he causes havoc at school and is home again in a month. (Is he a prodigy, a genius? Readers looking over Ludo’s shoulder find themselves easily reading Greek and more.) Lacking male role models for a fatherless boy, Sibylla turns to endless replays of Kurosawa’s masterpiece Seven Samurai. But Ludo is obsessed with the one thing he wants and doesn’t know: his father’s name. At eleven, inspired by his own take on the classic film, he sets out on a secret quest for the father he never knew. He'll be punched, sliced, and threatened with retribution. He may not live to see twelve. Or he may find a real samurai and save a mother who thinks boredom a fate worse than death.
Umberto Eco$18.98 $17.46
The #1 international bestseller, from Umberto Eco, author of The Name of the Rose. Nineteenth-century Europe— from Turin to Prague to Paris— abounds with the ghastly and the mysterious. Jesuits plot against Freemasons. Italian republicans strangle priests with their own intestines. French criminals plan bombings by day and celebrate Black Masses at night. Every nation has its own secret service, perpetrating forgeries, plots, and massacres. Conspiracies rule history. From the unification of Italy to the Paris Commune to the Dreyfus Affair to The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, Europe is in tumult and everyone needs a scapegoat. But what if, behind all of these conspiracies, both real and imagined, lay one lone man?
Alan Lightman$15.95 $14.67
A modern classic, Einstein’s Dreams is a fictional collage of stories dreamed by Albert Einstein in 1905, about time, relativity and physics. As the defiant but sensitive young genius is creating his theory of relativity, a new conception of time, he imagines many possible worlds. In one, time is circular, so that people are fated to repeat triumphs and failures over and over. In another, there is a place where time stands still, visited by lovers and parents clinging to their children. In another, time is a nightingale, sometimes trapped by a bell jar. Now translated into thirty languages, Einstein’s Dreams has inspired playwrights, dancers, musicians, and painters all over the world. In poetic vignettes, it explores the connections between science and art, the process of creativity, and ultimately the fragility of human existence.
Now hailed as an American classic, "Tropic of Cancer," Henry Miller's masterpiece, was banned as obscene in this country for twenty-seven years after its first publication in Paris in 1934. Only a historic court ruling that changed American censorship standards, ushering in a new era of freedomand frankness in modern literature, permitted the publication of this first volume of Miller's famed mixture of memoir and fiction, which chronicles with unapologetic gusto the bawdy adventures of a young expatriate writer, his friends, and the characters they meet in Paris in the 1930s.
Robert M Pirsig$16.99 $15.63
Few books transform a generation and then establish themselves as touchstones for the generations that follow. Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance is one such book. This modern epic of a man's search for meaning became an instant bestseller on publication in 1974, acclaimed as one of the most exciting books in the history of American letters. It continues to inspire millions. A narration of a summer motorcycle trip undertaken by a father and his son, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance becomes a personal and philosophical odyssey into fundamental questions on how to live. The narrator's relationship with his son leads to a powerful self-reckoning; the craft of motorcycle maintenance leads to an austerely beautiful process for reconciling science, religion, and humanism. Resonant with the confusions of existence, this classic is a touching and transcendent book of life. This new edition contains an interview with Pirsig and letters and documents detailing how this extraordinary book came to be.
James Joyce$25.00 $22.50
Having done the longest day in literature with his monumental Ulysses, James Joyce set himself even greater challenges for his next book — the night. "A nocturnal state...That is what I want to convey: what goes on in a dream, during a dream." The work, which would exhaust two decades of his life and the odd resources of some sixty languages, culminated in the 1939 publication of Joyce's final and most revolutionary masterpiece, Finnegans Wake. A story with no real beginning or end (it ends in the middle of a sentence and begins in the middle of the same sentence), this "book of Doublends Jined" is as remarkable for its prose as for its circular structure. Written in a fantantic dream language, forged from polyglot puns and portmanteau words, the Wake features some of Joyce's most brilliant inventive work. Sixty years after its original publication, it remains, in Anthony Burgess's words, "a great comic vision, one of the few books of the world that can make us laugh aloud on nearly every page." For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Kurt Vonnegut$26.00 $23.40
Slaughterhouse-Five is the now famous parable of Billy Pilgrim, a World War II veteran and POW who has, in the later stage of his life, become "unstuck in time" and who experiences at will (or unwillingly) all known events of his chronology out of order and sometimes simultaneously. Traumatized by the bombing of Dresden at the time he had been imprisoned, Pilgrim drifts through all events and history, sometimes deeply implicated, sometimes a witness. He is surrounded by Vonnegut's usual large cast of continuing characters (notably here the hack science fiction writer Kilgore Trout and the alien Tralfamadorians, who oversee his life and remind him constantly that there is no causation, no order, no motive to existence). The "unstuck" nature of Pilgrim's experience may constitute an early novelistic use of what we now call post-traumatic stress disorder; then again, Pilgrim's aliens may be as "real" as Dresden is real to him. Struggling to find some purpose, order, or meaning to his existence and humanity's, Pilgrim meets the beauteous and mysterious Montana Wildhack (certainly the author's best character name), has a child with her, and drifts on some supernal plane, finally, in which Kilgore Trout, the Tralfamadorians, Montana Wildhack, and the ruins of Dresden do not merge but rather disperse through all planes of existence. Slaughterhouse-Five was hugely successful, brought Vonnegut an enormous audience, was a finalist for the National Book Award and a best seller, and remains four decades later as timeless and shattering a war fiction as Catch-22, with which it stands as the two signal novels of their riotous and furious decade.
What Freud did for dreams, André Breton (1896-1966) does for despair: in its distortions he finds the marvelous, and through the marvelous the redemptive force of imagination. Originally published in 1932 in France, Les Vases communicants is an effort to show how the discoveries and techniques of surrealism could lead to recovery from despondency. This English translation makes available "the theories upon which the whole edifice of surrealism, as Breton conceived it, is based." In Communicating Vessels Breton lays out the problems of everyday experience and of intellect. His involvement with political thought and action led him to write about the relations between nations and individuals in a mode that moves from the quotidian to the lyrical. His dreams triggered a curious correspondence with Freud, available only in this book. As Caws writes, "The whole history of surrealism is here, in these pages."
Mark Z Danielewski$22.00 $19.80
Years ago, when House of Leaves was first being passed around, it was nothing more than a badly bundled heap of paper, parts of which would occasionally surface on the Internet. No one could have anticipated the small but devoted following this terrifying story would soon command. Starting with an odd assortment of marginalized youth— musicians, tattoo artists, programmers, strippers, environmentalists, and adrenaline junkies— the book eventually made its way into the hands of older generations, who not only found themselves in those strangely arranged pages but also discovered a way back into the lives of their estranged children. Now, for the first time, this astonishing novel is made available in book form, complete with the original colored words, vertical footnotes, and newly added second and third appendices. The story remains unchanged, focusing on a young family that moves into a small home on Ash Tree Lane where they discover something is terribly wrong: their house is bigger on the inside than it is on the outside. Of course, neither Pulitzer Prize-winning photojournalist Will Navidson nor his companion Karen Green was prepared to face the consequences of that impossibility, until the day their two little children wandered off and their voices eerily began to return another story -- of creature darkness, of an ever-growing abyss behind a closet door, and of that unholy growl which soon enough would tear through their walls and consume all their dreams.
Alphabetical Africa, Walter Abish's delightful first novel, is an extraordinary linguistic tour de force, high comedy set in an imaginary dark continent that expands and contracts with ineluctable precision, as one by one the author adds the letters of the alphabet to his book, and then subtracts them. While the "geoglyphic" African landscape forms and crumbles, it is, among other things, attacked by an army of driver ants, invaded by Zanzibar, painted orange by the transvestite Queen Quat of Tanzania, and becomes a hunting ground for a pair of murderous jewel thieves tracking down their nymphomaniac moll.
Djuna Barnes$14.95 $13.75
Nightwood, Djuna Barnes' strange and sinuous tour de force, "belongs to that small class of books that somehow reflect a time or an epoch" (Times Literary Supplement). That time is the period between the two World Wars, and Barnes' novel unfolds in the decadent shadows of Europe's great cities, Paris, Berlin, and Vienna— a world in which the boundaries of class, religion, and sexuality are bold but surprisingly porous. The outsized characters who inhabit this world are some of the most memorable in all of fiction—t here is Guido Volkbein, the Wandering Jew and son of a self-proclaimed baron; Robin Vote, the American expatriate who marries him and then engages in a series of affairs, first with Nora Flood and then with Jenny Petherbridge, driving all of her lovers to distraction with her passion for wandering alone in the night; and there is Dr. Matthew-Mighty-Grain-of-Salt-Dante-O'Connor, a transvestite and ostensible gynecologist, whose digressive speeches brim with fury, keen insights, and surprising allusions. Barnes' depiction of these characters and their relationships (Nora says, "A man is another persona woman is yourself, caught as you turn in panic; on her mouth you kiss your own") has made the novel a landmark of feminist and lesbian literature. Most striking of all is Barnes' unparalleled stylistic innovation, which led T. S. Eliot to proclaim the book "so good a novel that only sensibilities trained on poetry can wholly appreciate it." Now with a new preface by Jeanette Winterson, Nightwood still crackles with the same electric charge it had on its first publication in 1936.
Roberto Bolaño$27.00 $24.30
National Book Critics Circle, Fiction, 2009. Composed in the last years of Roberto Bolaño’s life, 2666 was greeted across Europe and Latin America as his highest achievement, surpassing even his previous work in its strangeness, beauty, and scope. Its throng of unforgettable characters includes academics and convicts, an American sportswriter, an elusive German novelist, and a teenage student and her widowed, mentally unstable father. Their lives intersect in the urban sprawl of Santa Teresa—a fictional Juárez—on the U.S.-Mexico border, where hundreds of young factory workers, in the novel as in life, have disappeared.
William T Vollmann$25.00
A rich, haunting novel of street life in San Francisco's Mission District, from the National Book Award-winning author of Europe Central. In The Royal Family, William T. Vollmann uses the story of two brothers to construct a haunting series of parallels between the lives of the dispossessed and the anxious middle class. Henry Tyler is a failing private detective in San Francisco. When the love of his life, Irene— who happens to be married to his brother John, an ambitious contract lawyer— commits suicide, he clings despairingly to her ghost. Struggling to turn his grief into something precious, Henry enters into a new life of nightmare beauty and degradation as he attempts to track down the legendary Queen of the Prostitutes. Crafted out of language by turns eloquent, humorous, sensual, and obscene, and full of vividly rendered depictions of low-life bars, office politics, and hobo camps, here are Vollmann's familiar but ever surprising characters— the seekers, the vigilantes, the hypocrites, the sex workers. He has woven their stories into a vivid and unforgettable novel about the eerie paradoxes of possession and loss.
James Joyce$22.00 $19.80
Ulysses is a novel by Irish writer James Joyce. It was first serialised in parts in the American journal The Little Review from March 1918 to December 1920, and then published in its entirety by Sylvia Beach in February 1922, in Paris. It is considered to be one of the most important works of Modernist literature, and has been called "a demonstration and summation of the entire movement". "Before Joyce, no writer of fiction had so foregrounded the process of thinking." However, even proponents of Ulysses such as Anthony Burgess have described the book as "inimitable, and also possibly mad". Ulysses chronicles the passage of Leopold Bloom through Dublin during an ordinary day, 16 June 1904 (the day of Joyce's first date with his future wife, Nora Barnacle). Ulysses is the Latinised name of Odysseus, the hero of Homer's poem Odyssey, and the novel establishes a series of parallels between its characters and events and those of the poem (e.g., the correspondence of Leopold Bloom to Odysseus, Molly Bloom to Penelope, and Stephen Dedalus to Telemachus). Ulysses is approximately 265,000 words in length, uses a lexicon of 30,030 words (including proper names, plurals and various verb tenses), and is divided into eighteen episodes. Since publication, the book has attracted controversy and scrutiny, ranging from early obscenity trials to protracted textual "Joyce Wars." Ulysses' stream-of-consciousness technique, careful structuring, and experimental prose—full of puns, parodies, and allusions, as well as its rich characterisations and broad humour, made the book a highly regarded novel in the Modernist pantheon. In 1998, the Modern Library ranked Ulysses first on its list of the 100 best English-language novels of the 20th century. Joyce fans worldwide now celebrate 16 June as Bloomsday.
Gravity's Rainbow (Classics Deluxe Edition): (penguin Classics Deluxe Edition) (Penguin Classics Deluxe)
Thomas Pynchon and Frank Miller$23.00 $20.70
Winner of the 1973 National Book Award, Gravity's Rainbow is a postmodern epic, a work as exhaustively significant to the second half of the 20th century as Joyce's Ulysses was to the first. Its sprawling, encyclopedic narrative and penetrating analysis of the impact of technology on society make it an intellectual tour de force.
Robert Musil$25.00 $22.50
Set in Vienna on the eve of World War I, this great novel of ideas tells the story of Ulrich, ex-soldier and scientist, seducer and skeptic, who finds himself drafted into the grandiose plans for the 70th jubilee of the Emperor Franz Josef. This new translation— published in two elegant volumes— is the first to present Musil's complete text, including material that remained unpublished during his lifetime.
Malcolm Lowry$16.99 $15.63
On the Day of the Dead, in 1938, Geoffrey Firmin, an alcoholic and ruined man, is fatefully living out his last day, drowning himself in mescal while his former wife and half-brother look on, powerless to help him. The events of this one day unfold against a backdrop unforgettable for its evocation of a Mexico at once magical and diabolical.
Witold Gombrowicz$16.00 $14.72
A "creatively captivating and intellectually challenging" existential mystery from the great Polish author“ sly, funny, and... lovingly translated" (The New York Times). Winner of the 1967 International Prize for Literature. Milan Kundera called Witold Gombrowicz "one of the great novelists of our century." Now his most famous novel, Cosmos, is available in a critically acclaimed translation by the award-winning translator Danuta Borchardt. Cosmos is a metaphysical noir thriller narrated by Witold, a seedy, pathetic, and witty student, who is charming and appalling by turns. In need of a quiet place to study, Witold and his melancholy friend Fuks head to a boarding house in the mountains. Along the way, they discover a dead bird hanging from a string. Is this a strange but meaningless occurrence or is it the first clue to a sinister mystery? As the young men become embroiled in the Chekhovian travails of the family that runs the boarding house, Grombrowicz creates a gripping narrative where the reader questions who is sane and who is safe. "Probably the most important 20th-century novelist most Western readers have never heard of." (Benjamin Paloff, Words Without Borders).
Kazuo Ishiguro$17.00 $15.64
From the winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature and author of the Booker Prize–winning novel The Remains of the Day, here is a novel that is at once a gripping psychological mystery, a wicked satire of the cult of art, and a poignant character study of a man whose public life has accelerated beyond his control. The setting is a nameless Central European city where Ryder, a renowned pianist, has come to give the most important performance of his life. Instead, he finds himself diverted on a series of cryptic and infuriating errands that nevertheless provide him with vital clues to his own past. In The Unconsoled Ishiguro creates a work that is itself a virtuoso performance, strange, haunting, and resonant with humanity and wit.
Franz Kafka$15.95 $14.67
Translated and with a preface by Mark Harman.Left unfinished by Kafka in 1922 and not published until 1926, two years after his death, The Castle is the haunting tale of K.'s relentless, unavailing struggle with an inscrutable authority in order to gain access to the Castle. Scrupulously following the fluidity and breathlessness of the sparsely punctuated original manuscript, Mark Harman's new translation reveals levels of comedy, energy, and visual power previously unknown to English language readers.
Joan Didion$16.00 $14.72
From one of America's iconic writers, a stunning book of electric honesty and passion. Joan Didion explores an intensely personal yet universal experience: a portrait of a marriage– and a life, in good times and bad– that will speak to anyone who has ever loved a husband or wife or child. Several days before Christmas 2003, John Gregory Dunne and Joan Didion saw their only daughter, Quintana, fall ill with what seemed at first flu, then pneumonia, then complete septic shock. She was put into an induced coma and placed on life support. Days later– the night before New Year's Eve– the Dunnes were just sitting down to dinner after visiting the hospital when John Gregory Dunne suffered a massive and fatal coronary. In a second, this close, symbiotic partnership of forty years was over. Four weeks later, their daughter pulled through. Two months after that, arriving at LAX, she collapsed and underwent six hours of brain surgery at UCLA Medical Center to relieve a massive hematoma. This powerful book is Didion's attempt to make sense of the "weeks and then months that cut loose any fixed idea I ever had about death, about illness... about marriage and children and memory... about the shallowness of sanity, about life itself."
William H. Gass and Gass William H.$16.95 $15.59
Thirty years in the making, William Gass's second novel first appeared on the literary scene in 1995, at which time it was promptly hailed as an indisputable masterpiece. The story of a middle aged professor who, upon completion of his massive historical study, "Guilt and Innocence in Hitler's Germany," finds himself writing a novel about his own life instead of the introduction to his magnum opus. "The Tunnel" meditates on history, hatred, unhappiness, and, above all, language.
Nadine Gordimer$16.00 $14.72
Mehring is rich. He has all the privileges and possessions that South Africa has to offer, but his possessions refuse to remain objects. His wife, son, and mistress leave him; his foreman and workers become increasingly indifferent to his stewardship; even the land rises up, as drought, then flood, destroy his farm.
Stephen King$19.99 $18.39
On November 22, 1963, three shots rang out in Dallas, President Kennedy died, and the world changed. What if you could change it back? In this brilliantly conceived tour de force, Stephen King— who has absorbed the social, political, and popular culture of his generation more imaginatively and thoroughly than any other writer— takes readers on an incredible journey into the past and the possibility of altering it. It begins with Jake Epping, a 35-year-old English teacher in Lisbon Falls, Maine, who makes extra money teaching GED classes. He asks his students to write about an event that changed their lives, and one essay blows him away: a gruesome, harrowing story about the night more than 50 years ago when Harry Dunning's father came home and killed his mother, his sister, and his brother with a sledgehammer. Reading the essay is a watershed moment for Jake, his life - like Harry's, like America's in 1963— turning on a dime. Not much later his friend Al, who owns the local diner, divulges a secret: his storeroom is a portal to the past, a particular day in 1958. And Al enlists Jake to take over the mission that has become his obsession - to prevent the Kennedy assassination. So begins Jake's new life as George Amberson, in a different world— of Ike and JFK and Elvis, of big American cars and sock hops and cigarette smoke everywhere. From the dank little city of Derry, Maine (where there's Dunning business to conduct), to the warmhearted small town of Jodie, Texas, where Jake falls dangerously in love, every turn is leading, eventually of course, to a troubled loner named Lee Harvey Oswald and to Dallas, where the past becomes heart-stoppingly suspenseful— and where history might not be history anymore. Time-travel has never been so believable. Or so terrifying.
Virginia Woolf$15.99 $14.71
To the Lighthouse (5 May 1927) is a novel by Virginia Woolf. A landmark novel of high modernism, the text, centering on the Ramsay family and their visits to the Isle of Skye in Scotland between 1910 and 1920, skillfully manipulates temporality and psychological exploration. To the Lighthouse follows and extends the tradition of modernist novelists like Marcel Proust and James Joyce, where the plot is secondary to philosophical introspection, and the prose can be winding and hard to follow. The novel includes little dialogue and almost no action; most of it is written as thoughts and observations. The novel recalls the power of childhood emotions and highlights the impermanence of adult relationships. One of the book's several themes is the ubiquity of transience.
William S. Burroughs$17.95 $16.51
Before the era of fake news and anti-fascists, William S. Burroughs wrote about preparing for revolution and confronting institutionalized power. In this work, Burroughs' parody becomes a set of rationales and instructions for destabilizing the state and overthrowing an oppressive and corrupt government. As with much of Burroughs' work, it is hard to say if it is serious or purely satire. The work is funny, horrifying, and eerily prescient, especially concerning the use of language and social media to undermine institutions. The Revised Boy Scout Manual was a work Burroughs revisited many times, but which has never before been published in its complete form. Based primarily on recordings of a performance of the complete piece found in the archives at the OSU libraries, as well as various incomplete versions of the typescript found at Arizona State University and the New York Public Library archives, this lost masterpiece of satiric subversion is finally available in its entirety.
William S. Burroughs Jr$16.00 $14.72
Naked Lunch is one of the most important novels of the 20th century, a book that redefined not just literature but American culture. This is an unnerving tale of a narcotics addict unmoored in New York, Tangiers, and, ultimately, a nightmarish wasteland known as Interzone. The restored text includes many editorial corrections and incorporates Burroughs's notes on the text and several essays he wrote over the years about the book. For the Burroughs enthusiast and neophyte alike, this is a valuable and fresh experience of this classic of our culture.
Fernando Pessoa$24.95 $22.46
The Book of Disquiet is the Portuguese modernist master Fernando Pessoa's greatest literary achievement. An "autobiography" or "diary" containing exquisite melancholy observations, aphorisms, and ruminations, this classic work grapples with all the eternal questions. Now, for the first time the texts are presented chronologically, in a complete English edition by master translator Margaret Jull Costa. Most of the texts in The Book of Disquiet are written under the semi-heteronym Bernardo Soares, an assistant bookkeeper. This existential masterpiece was first published in Portuguese in 1982, forty-seven years after Pessoa's death. A monumental literary event, this exciting, new, complete edition spans Fernando Pessoa's entire writing life.
Carlos Castaneda$9.99 $9.19
Thirty years ago the University of California Press published a remarkable manuscript by an anthropology student named Carlos Castaneda. "The Teachings of Don Juan" initiated a generation of seekers dissatisfied with the limitations of the Western worldview. Castaneda's now classic book remains controversial for the alternative way of seeing that it presents and the revolution in cognition it demands. In a series of fascinating dialogues, Castaneda sets forth his partial initiation with don Juan Matus, a Yaqui Indian shaman from the state of Sonora, Mexico. He describes Don Juan's perception and mastery of the "non-ordinary reality" and how peyote and other plants sacred to the Mexican Indians were used as gateways to the mysteries of "dread, " "clarity, " and "power."
Graced with opening words by His Holiness The Dalai Lama, the Penguin Deluxe Edition of The Tibetan Book of the Dead is "immaculately rendered in an English both graceful and precise." Translated with the close support of leading contemporary masters and hailed as "a tremendous accomplishment," this book faithfully presents the insights and intentions of the original work. It includes one of the most detailed and compelling descriptions of the after-death state in world literature, practices that can transform our experience of daily life, guidance on helping those who are dying, and an inspirational perspective on coping with bereavement. For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
Mary Gaitskill$16.00 $14.72
When SugarLoaf discovers that her parents once bestowed the Best Kid in the World Award on her brother, her first thought is: But... but... but what about me? She wants to be the Best Kid in the World, so she decides to be so very helpful that her parents can't not give the award to her. However, every one of SugarLoaf's good deeds ends in disaster, and it seems that the award is farther away from her grasp than ever. But what she doesn't realize is that trying counts for a lot, so she might have a better chance at taking the Best Kid in the World throne than she imagines.
William Faulkner's provocative and enigmatic 1929 novel, The Sound and the Fury, is widely acknowledged as one of the most important English-language novels of the twentieth century. This revised and expanded Norton Critical Edition builds on the strengths of its predecessors while focusing new attention on both the novel's contemporary reception and its rich cultural and historical contexts. The text for the Third Edition is again that of the corrected text scrupulously prepared by Noel Polk, whose textual note precedes the novel. David Minter's annotations, designed to assist readers with obscure words and allusions, have been retained. "Contemporary Reception," new to the Third Edition, considers the broad range of reactions to Faulkner's extraordinary novel on publication. Michael Gorra's headnote sets the stage for assessments by Evelyn Scott, Henry Nash Smith, Clifton P. Fadiman, Dudley Fitts, Richard Hughes, and Edward Crickmay. New materials by Faulkner ("The Writer and His Work") include letters to Malcolm Cowley about The Portable Faulkner and Faulkner's Nobel Prize for Literature address. "Cultural and Historical Contexts" begins with Michael Gorra's insightful headnote, which is followed by seven seminal considerations— five of them new to the Third Edition— of southern history, literature, and memory. Together, these works— by C. Vann Woodward, Richard H. King, Richard Gray, William Alexander Percy, Lillian Smith, William James, and Henri Bergson— provide readers with important contexts for understanding the novel. "Criticism" represents eighty-five years of scholarly engagement with The Sound and the Fury. New to the Third Edition are essays by Eric Sundquist, Noel Polk, Doreen Fowler, Richard Godden, Stacy Burton, and Maria Truchan-Tataryn. A Chronology of Faulkner's life and work is newly included along with an updated Selected Bibliography.
Donna Tartt$17.00 $15.64
Donna Tartt, winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for her most recent novel, The Goldfinch, established herself as a major talent with The Secret History, which has become a contemporary classic. Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality their lives are changed profoundly and forever, and they discover how hard it can be to truly live and how easy it is to kill.
Haruki Murakami$17.95 $16.51
The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is a tour de force - and one of Haruki Murakami’s most acclaimed and beloved novels. In a Tokyo suburb, a young man named Toru Okada searches for his wife’s missing cat - and then for his wife as well - in a netherworld beneath the city’s placid surface. As these searches intersect, he encounters a bizarre group of allies and antagonists. Gripping, prophetic, and suffused with comedy and menace, this is an astonishingly imaginative detective story, an account of a disintegrating marriage, and an excavation of the buried secrets from Japan’s forgotten campaign in Manchuria during World War II.
Anthony Doerr$18.00 $16.56
Winner of the 2015 Audie Award for Fiction. Marie-Laure lives with her father in Paris near the Museum of Natural History, where he works as the master of its thousands of locks. When she is six, Marie-Laure goes blind and her father builds a perfect miniature of their neighborhood so she can memorize it by touch and navigate her way home. When she is 12, the Nazis occupy Paris and father and daughter flee to the walled citadel of Saint-Malo, where Marie-Laure’s reclusive great-uncle lives in a tall house by the sea. With them they carry what might be the museum’s most valuable and dangerous jewel. In a mining town in Germany, the orphan Werner grows up with his younger sister, enchanted by a crude radio they find. Werner becomes an expert at building and fixing these crucial new instruments, a talent that wins him a place at a brutal academy for Hitler Youth, then a special assignment to track the resistance. More and more aware of the human cost of his intelligence, Werner travels through the heart of the war and, finally, into Saint-Malo, where his story and Marie-Laure’s converge.
The Narrator is a sensitive young man who wishes to become a writer, whose identity is kept vague. As a child, his anxiety at leaving his mother at night and his attempts to force her to come and kiss him goodnight, culminates in a spectacular success, when his father suggests that his mother stay the night with him. The Narrator's anxiety leads to manipulation, much like the manipulation employed by his invalid aunt Leonie and all the lovers in the entire book, who use the same methods of petty tyranny to manipulate and possess their loved ones. Swann's Way is considered to be Marcel Proust's most prominent work, known both for its length and its theme of involuntary memory, the most famous example being the "episode of the madeleine" which occurs early in the first volume. While there is an array of symbolism in the work, it is rarely defined through explicit "keys" leading to moral, romantic or philosophical ideas. The significance of what is happening is often placed within the memory or in the inner contemplation of what is described. This focus on the relationship between experience, memory and writing and the radical de-emphasizing of the outward plot, have become staples of the modern novel but were almost unheard of in 1913. This cloth-bound book includes a Victorian inspired dust-jacket, and is limited to 100 copies.
Hermann Hesse$6.95 $6.39
In the novel, Siddhartha, a young man, leaves his family for a contemplative life, then, restless, discards it for one of the flesh. He conceives a son, but bored and sickened by lust and greed, moves on again. Near dispair, Siddhartha comes to a river where he hears a unique sound. This sound signals the true beginning of life - the beginning of suffering, rejection, peace and, finally, wisdom.
Ludwig Wittgenstein$9.95 $9.15
Philosophy is not a theory, asserted Austro-British philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951), but an activity. In this 1921 opus, his only philosophical work published during his lifetime, Wittgenstein defined the object of philosophy as the logical clarification of thoughts and proposed the solution to most philosophic problems by means of a critical method of linguistic analysis. In proclaiming philosophy as a matter of logic rather than of metaphysics, Wittgenstein created a sensation among intellectual circles that influenced the development of logical positivism and changed the direction of 20th-century thought. Beginning with the principles of symbolism and the necessary relations between words and objects, the author applies his theories to various branches of traditional philosophy, illustrating how mistakes arise from inappropriate use of symbolism and misuses of language. After examining the logical structure of propositions and the nature of logical inference, he discusses the theory of knowledge as well as principles of physics and ethics and aspects of the mystical. Supervised by the author himself, this translation from the German by C. K. Ogden is regarded as the definitive text. A magisterial introduction by the distinguished philosopher Bertrand Russell hails Wittgenstein's achievement as extraordinarily important, one which no serious philosopher can afford to neglect. Introduction by Bertrand Russell.
R. Buckminster Fuller and Daniel López-Pérez$40.00 $36.00
The work of R. Buckminster Fuller (1895-1983) is among the most extraordinary and inventive in 20th-century design and architecture, not least for its incorporation of a range of intellectual and technical disciplines. Fuller described himself as an "engineer, inventor, mathematician, architect, cartographer, philosopher, poet, cosmogonist, comprehensive designer and choreographer.'' R. Buckminster Fuller: Pattern-Thinking is a major reassessment of Fuller's legacy in the context of design, examining his singular vision of new conceptual models for design and architecture, alongside his ideas on their potentially world-altering consequences. Drawing extensively on his archive and with over 300 images, the book follows Fuller's explorations of geometry, language and intellectual property in their relation to design principles and pedagogy, organizing its survey of Fuller's work through parallel conceptual threads rather than in a linear chronology of his career.
Frances A. Yates$36.95 $33.26
A revolutionary book about mnemonic techniques, and their relation to the history of philosophy, science, and literature The ancient Greeks, to whom a trained memory was of vital importance as it was to everyone before the invention of printing created an elaborate memory system, based on a technique of impressing "places" and "images" on the mind. Inherited and recorded by the Romans, this art of memory passed into the European tradition, to be revived, in occult form, at the Renaissance, and particularly by the strange and remarkable genius, Giordano Bruno. Such is the main theme of Frances Yates's unique and distinctive book, in the course of which she sheds light on such diverse subjects as Dante's "Divine Comedy," the form of the Shakespearian theater, and the history of ancient architecture. Aside from its intrinsic fascination, this book is an invaluable contribution to aesthetics and psychology, and to the history of philosophy, of science, and of literature."
Massimo Pigliucci$16.99 $15.63
In the tradition of How to Live and How Proust Can Change Your Life, a philosopher asks how ancient Stoicism can help us flourish today Whenever we worry about what to eat, how to love, or simply how to be happy, we are worrying about how to lead a good life. No goal is more elusive. In How to Be a Stoic, philosopher Massimo Pigliucci offers Stoicism, the ancient philosophy that inspired the great emperor Marcus Aurelius, as the best way to attain it. Stoicism is a pragmatic philosophy that focuses our attention on what is possible and gives us perspective on what is unimportant. By understanding Stoicism, we can learn to answer crucial questions: Should we get married or divorced? How should we handle our money in a world nearly destroyed by a financial crisis? How can we survive great personal tragedy? Whoever we are, Stoicism has something for us--and How to Be a Stoic is the essential guide.
Neville Goddard (1905-1972) was a profoundly influential teacher, and author, writing more than ten books under the pen name Neville. He was a popular speaker on metaphysical themes and is associated with the New Thought philosophy.
Eknath Easwaran$11.95 $10.99
Easwaran's best-selling translation of the ancient wisdom texts called the Upanishads is reliable, readable, and profound. In the Upanishads, illumined sages share flashes of insight, the results of their investigation into consciousness itself. In extraordinary visions, they have direct experience of a transcendent Reality which is the essence, or Self, of each created being. They teach that each of us, each Self, is eternal, deathless, one with the power that created the universe. Easwaran's translation of the principal Upanishads and five others includes an overview of the cultural and historical setting, with chapter introductions, notes, and a Sanskrit glossary. But it is Easwaran's understanding of the wisdom of the Upanishads that makes this edition truly outstanding. Each sage, each Upanishad, appeals in a different way to the reader's head and heart. In the end, Easwaran writes, "The Upanishads are part of India's precious legacy, not just to Hinduism but to humanity, and in that spirit they are offered here."
Ludwig Von Mises$42.00 $37.80
In Human Action, Mises starts from the ideas set forth in his Theory and History that all actions and decisions are based on human needs, wants, and desires and continues deeper and further to explain how studying this human action is not only a legitimate science (praxeology) but how that science is based on the foundation of free-market economics. Mises presents and discusses all existing economic theories and then proceeds to explain how the only sensible, realistic, and feasible theory of economics is one based on how the needs and desires of human beings dictate trends, affect profits and losses, adjust supply and demand, set prices, and otherwise maintain, regulate, and control economic forces. Ludwig von Mises (1881-1973) was the leading spokesman of the Austrian School of economics throughout most of the twentieth century. Bettina Bien Greaves is a former resident scholar and trustee of the Foundation for Economic Education and was a senior staff member at FEE from 1951 to 1999.
From 1959 to 1964, a chilling new anthology series held audiences captive with tales of horror, delight, and mystery. Rod Serling changed the face of television with The Twilight Zone, a groundbreaking series that enticed viewers to tap into the wonders of a "dimension of sound, a dimension of sight, a dimension of mind." When they accepted that cryptic invitation, viewers found themselves in The Twilight Zone. Now, one of those minds transported to strange new worlds extends his invitation to you as well. Join author Kenneth Reynolds on a detailed journey through each of the 156 episodes of Serling's classic series. Featuring detailed plot synopses, analysis, and commentary, The Twilight Zone: Rod Serling's Wondrous Land invites you into a new world of imagination. It thoroughly studies and analyzes every episode, emphasizing important dialogue and concluding with a list of the episode's applicable themes and lessons. Featuring commentary from several Twilight Zone actors, this guide offers a behind-the-scenes glimpse into the making of this landmark series. Unlock the door of your imagination with The Twilight Zone: Rod Serling's Wondrous Land.
From Galileo to today's amateur astronomers, scientists have been rebels, writes Freeman Dyson. Like artists and poets, they are free spirits who resist the restrictions their cultures impose on them. In their pursuit of nature's truths, they are guided as much by imagination as by reason, and their greatest theories have the uniqueness and beauty of great works of art. Dyson argues that the best way to understand science is by understanding those who practice it. He tells stories of scientists at work, ranging from Isaac Newton's absorption in physics, alchemy, theology, and politics, to Ernest Rutherford's discovery of the structure of the atom, to Albert Einstein's stubborn hostility to the idea of black holes. His descriptions of brilliant physicists like Edward Teller and Richard Feynman are enlivened by his own reminiscences of them. He looks with a skeptical eye at fashionable scientific fads and fantasies, and speculates on the future of climate prediction, genetic engineering, the colonization of space, and the possibility that paranormal phenomena may exist yet not be scientifically verifiable. Dyson also looks beyond particular scientific questions to reflect on broader philosophical issues, such as the limits of reductionism, the morality of strategic bombing and nuclear weapons, the preservation of the environment, and the relationship between science and religion. These essays, by a distinguished physicist who is also a prolific writer, offer informed insights into the history of science and fresh perspectives on contentious current debates about science, ethics, and faith.
Food of the Gods: The Search for the Original Tree of Knowledge a Radical History of Plants, Drugs, and Human Evolution
Terence McKenna$20.00 $18.00
An exploration of humans' symbiotic relationships with plants and chemicals presents information on prehistoric partnership societies, the roles of spices and spirits in the rise of dominator societies; and the politics of tobacco, tea, coffee, opium, and alcohol. Why, as a species, are humans so fascinated by altered states of consciousness? Can altered states reveal something to us about our origins and our place in nature? In Food of the Gods, ethnobotanist Terence McKenna's research on man's ancient relationship with chemicals opens a doorway to the divine, and perhaps a solution for saving our troubled world. McKenna provides a revisionist look at the historical role of drugs in the East and the West, from ancient spice, sugar, and rum trades to marijuana, cocaine, synthetics, and even television--illustrating the human desire for the "food of the gods" and the powerful potential to replace abuse of illegal drugs with a shamanic understanding, insistence on community, reverence for nature, and increased self-awareness.
Robert Anton Wilson$16.95 $15.59
Is history a vast conspiracy? A cosmic joke? Discover the truth - maybe - in the long-awaited new edition of Robert Anton Wilson's classic cult bestseller The Illuminati Papers. Created as a vehicle to amuse and enlighten, the story of the Illuminati has attracted devoted readers world-wide, who have found in it a perfect metaphor for our times. This edition has a new introduction, cover and layout.
Raymond Buckland$22.99 $20.69
With the discovery that neo-Witchcraft - or Wicca - is not devil-worship, thousands of religious seekers around the world have finally come to realize that this earth religion may well be the answer to their needs. Yet it has been almost impossible to gather all the ingredients that go to make up this religious practice; particularly in addressing specific personal needs.
Jose Rizal$18.00 $16.56
In more than a century since its appearance, José Rizal's Noli Me Tangere has become widely known as the great novel of the Philippines. A passionate love story set against the ugly political backdrop of repression, torture, and murder, "The Noli," as it is called in the Philippines, was the first major artistic manifestation of Asian resistance to European colonialism, and Rizal became a guiding conscience— and martyr— for the revolution that would subsequently rise up in the Spanish province.
H. M. E. de Jong$80.00
C. G. Jung$8.99 $8.27
Mary Anne Atwood$24.95