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163 Featured Titles

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Exam Copy
Mencken Chrestomathy

Written by H.L. Mencken


Format: Trade Paperback, 656 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: April 12, 1982
Price: $21.95
ISBN: 978-0-394-75209-9 (0-394-75209-0)

Edited and annotated by H.L.M., this is a selection from his out-of-print writings. They come mostly from books—the six of the Prejudices series, A Book of Burlesques, In Defense of Women, Notes on Democracy, Making A President, A Book of Calumny, Treatise on Right and Wrong—but there are also magazine and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Minority Report

Written by H.L. Mencken


Format: eBook, 304 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: October 2, 2013
Price: $9.99
ISBN: 978-0-307-83090-6 (0-307-83090-X)

In the fall of 1948 H. L. Mencken, then at the top of his unmatchable form (he had spoken at a meeting of the American Philosophical Society in Philadelphia only a little while before), suffered a stroke. He soon recovered his physical vigor, but writing was for him a thing of... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Complete Works

Written by Michel de Montaigne


Format: Hardcover, 1392 pages
Publisher: Everyman's Library
On Sale: April 29, 2003
Price: $35.00
ISBN: 978-1-4000-4021-6 (1-4000-4021-3)

Humanist, skeptic, acute observer of himself and others, Michel de Montaigne (1533–92) was the first to use the term “essay” to refer to the form he pioneered and he has remained one of its most famous practitioners. He reflected on the great themes of existence in his masterly and engaging writings... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Hero And the Blues

Written by Albert Murray


Format: Trade Paperback, 112 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: January 16, 1996
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-76220-1 (0-679-76220-5)

In this visionary book, Murray takes an audacious new look at black music and, in the process, succeeds in changing the way one reads literature. Murray's subject is the previously unacknowledged kinship between fiction and the blues. Both, he argues, are virtuoso performances that impart information, wisdom, and moral guidance to... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
City of the Soul
A Walk in Rome
Written by William Murray


Format: Hardcover, 144 pages
Publisher: Crown
On Sale: February 4, 2003
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-609-60614-8 (0-609-60614-X)

“One lifetime is not enough for Rome,” the famous saying goes, and anyone who’s ever been there knows these words to be true. In City of the Soul, William Murray begins to show us why.

Growing up in Rome and spending much of his life in the city, William Murray is an... Read more >

Exam Copy
Literary Occasions
Essays
Written by V.S. Naipaul


Format: Trade Paperback, 240 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: August 10, 2004
Price: $14.00
ISBN: 978-1-4000-3130-6 (1-4000-3130-3)

From a master of the English language—winner of the Nobel Prize in Literature—a collection of essays about reading, writing, and identity.

In these eleven pieces—brought together for the first time—Naipaul charts more than half a century of personal inquiry into the mysteries of written expression and of fiction in particular. Here... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Masque of Africa
Glimpses of African Belief
Written by V.S. Naipaul


Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: October 4, 2011
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-307-45499-7 (0-307-45499-1)

A remarkable work of reportage by Nobel Prize Laureate V. S. Naipaul that surveys belief and religion among the disparate peoples of Africa.

Like all of Naipaul’s “travel” books, The Masque of Africa encompasses a much larger narrative and purpose: to judge the effects of belief (in indigenous animisms, the foreign religions... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Writer and the World
Essays
Written by V.S. Naipaul


Format: Trade Paperback, 544 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: September 9, 2003
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-70730-8 (0-375-70730-1)

Spanning four decades and four continents, this magisterial volume brings together the essential shorter works of reflection and reportage by our most sensitive, literate, and undeceivable observer of the post-colonial world. In its pages V. S. Naipaul trains his relentless moral intelligence on societies from India to the United States and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Poetry in Person
Twenty-five Years of Conversation with America's Poets
Written by Alexander Neubauer


Format: Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: September 6, 2011
Price: $18.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-71175-6 (0-375-71175-9)

“In the fall of 1970, at the New School in Greenwich Village, a new teacher posted a flyer on the wall,” begins Alexander Neubauer’s introduction to this remarkable book. “It read ‘Meet Poets and Poetry, with Pearl London and Guests.’” Few students responded. No one knew Pearl London, the daughter of... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Owls and Other Fantasies
Poems and Essays
Written by Mary Oliver


Format: Trade Paperback, 88 pages
Publisher: Beacon Press
On Sale: April 1, 2006
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-8070-6875-5 (0-8070-6875-6)

Within these pages Mary Oliver collects twenty-six of her poems about the birds that have been such an important part of her life-hawks, hummingbirds, and herons; kingfishers, catbirds, and crows; swans, swallows, and, of course, the snowy owl; among a dozen others-including ten poems original to this volume. She adds two... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a hardcover.

Exam Copy
Essays

Written by George Orwell


Format: Hardcover, 1416 pages
Publisher: Everyman's Library
On Sale: October 15, 2002
Price: $40.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-41503-6 (0-375-41503-3)

The most generous and varied single volume selection available of the literary and political writings of one of our greatest essayists of the twentieth century. In these 240 plus essays, Orwell elevated political writing to the level of art, and his motivating ideas–his desire for social justice, his belief in universal... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Book That Changed My Life
Interviews with National Book Award Winners and Finalists
Edited by Diane Osen
Introduction by Neil Baldwin


Format: Trade Paperback, 208 pages
Publisher: Modern Library
On Sale: September 17, 2002
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-78351-0 (0-679-78351-2)

Every reader can name at least one book that changed his or her life—and many more beloved titles will surely come to mind as well. In The Book That Changed My Life, fifteen of America’s most influential authors discuss their own special literary choices. These unique interviews with National Book Award... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Fame & Folly
Essays
Written by Cynthia Ozick


Format: Trade Paperback, 304 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: May 27, 1997
Price: $14.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-76754-1 (0-679-76754-1)

From one of America's great literary figures, a new collection of essays on eminent writers and their work, and on the war between art and life. The perilous intersection of writers' lives with public and private dooms is the fertile subject of many of these remarkable essays from such literary giants... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Metaphor & Memory

Written by Cynthia Ozick


Format: Trade Paperback, 300 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: September 3, 1991
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-679-73425-3 (0-679-73425-2)

In these intellectually dazzling essays, Ozick writes about Saul Bellow and Henry James, William Gaddis and Primo Levi. She observes the tug-of-war between written and spoken language and the complex relation between art's contrivances and its moral truths. She has given us an exceptional book that demonstrates the possibilities of literature... Read more >

Exam Copy
Quarrel & Quandary
Essays
Written by Cynthia Ozick


Format: Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: November 13, 2001
Price: $13.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-72445-9 (0-375-72445-1)

Quarrel & Quandary showcases the manifold talents of one of our leading and award-winning critics and essayists.

In nineteen opulent essays, Cynthia Ozick probes Dostoevsky for insights into the Unabomber, questions the role of the public intellectual, and dares to wonder what poetry is. She roams effortlessly from Kafka to James, Styron... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Stranger Than Fiction
True Stories
Written by Chuck Palahniuk


Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: May 10, 2005
Price: $15.95
ISBN: 978-0-385-72222-3 (0-385-72222-2)

Chuck Palahniuk’s world has always been, well, different from yours and mine. In his first collection of nonfiction, Chuck Palahniuk brings us into this world, and gives us a glimpse of what inspires his fiction.

At the Rock Creek Lodge Testicle Festival in Missoula, Montana, average people perform public sex acts on... Read more >
Also available as an abridged audiobook download and an eBook.

Exam Copy
Other Colors
Essays and a Story
Written by Orhan Pamuk


Format: Trade Paperback, 464 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: November 11, 2008
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-38623-6 (0-307-38623-6)

In the three decades that Nobel prize-winning author Orhan Pamuk has devoted himself to writing fiction, he has also produced scores of witty, moving, and provocative essays and articles. He engages the work of Nabokov, Kundera, Rushdie, and Vargas Llosa, among others, and he discusses his own books and writing process... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Promised Land
Thirteen Books That Changed America
Written by Jay Parini


Format: Trade Paperback, 400 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: January 12, 2010
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-38618-2 (0-307-38618-X)

“These thirteen books must be seen as representative, not definitive, works. They are nodal points, places where vast areas of thought and feeling gathered and dispersed, creating a nation as various and vibrant as the United States, which must be considered one of the most successful nation-states in modern history, and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
A New World Order
Essays
Written by Caryl Phillips


Format: Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: April 30, 2002
Price: $14.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-71403-0 (0-375-71403-0)

The Africa of his ancestry, the Caribbean of his birth, the Britain of his upbringing, and the United States where he now lives are the focal points of award-winning writer Caryl Phillips’ profound inquiry into evolving notions of home, identity, and belonging in an increasingly international society.

At once deeply reflective and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Subject to Debate
Sense and Dissents on Women, Politics, and Culture
Written by Katha Pollitt


Format: Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Publisher: Modern Library
On Sale: February 6, 2001
Price: $25.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-78343-5 (0-679-78343-1)

Subject to Debate, Katha Pollitt’s column in The Nation, has offered readers clear-eyed yet provocative observations on women, politics, and culture for more than seven years. Bringing together eighty-eight of her most astute essays on hot-button topics like abortion, affirmative action, and school vouchers, this selection displays the full range of... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Ballyhoo, Buckaroo, and Spuds
Ingenious Tales of Words and Their Origins
Written by Michael Quinion


Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: October 17, 2004
Price: $19.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-219-5 (1-58834-219-0)

The real story of a word or phrase’s origin and evolution is often much stranger–and much more humorous–than the commonly accepted one; the many entries will certainly leave you “happy as a clam.” Happy as a clam? Really, what’s so happy about being a clam? The saying makes much more sense... Read more >

Exam Copy
Half Empty

Written by David Rakoff


Format: Trade Paperback, 240 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: September 6, 2011
Price: $14.95
ISBN: 978-0-7679-2905-9 (0-7679-2905-5)

In this deeply smart and sneakily poignant collection of essays, the bestselling author of Fraud and Don’t Get Too Comfortable makes an inspired case for always assuming the worst—because then you’ll never be disappointed. Whether he’s taking on pop culture phenomena with Oscar Wilde-worthy wit or dealing with personal tragedy, Rakoff’s... Read more >
Also available as an unabridged audiobook download and an eBook.

Sex, Death and God in L.A.

Written by David Reid


Format: eBook, 368 pages
Publisher: Pantheon
On Sale: October 2, 2013
Price: $22.99
ISBN: 978-0-8041-5012-5 (0-8041-5012-5)

Los Angeles is the labyrinth at the end of the American Dream, a city often celebrated, often condemned—rarely understood. In this fascinating and unusual collection David Reid has gathered together the novelists, journalists, and cultural critics who could best debunk the myths, define the truths, and decipher the strange iconography of... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Snows of Yesteryear

Written by Gregor Von Rezzori
Translated by H. F. Broch De Rothermann
Introduction by John Banville


Format: Trade Paperback, 304 pages
Publisher: NYRB Classics
On Sale: December 2, 2008
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-1-59017-281-0 (1-59017-281-7)

Gregor von Rezzori was born in Czernowitz, a onetime provincial capital of the Austro-Hungarian Empire that was later to be absorbed successively into Romania, the USSR, and the Ukraine—a town that was everywhere and nowhere, with a population of astonishing diversity. Growing up after World War I and the collapse of... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Selected Speeches and Writings of Theodore Roosevelt

Written by Theodore Roosevelt
Edited by Gordon Hutner


Format: Trade Paperback, 384 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: April 22, 2014
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-345-80611-6 (0-345-80611-5)

Theodore Roosevelt was our most published president with an incredible output of writing including forty books, more than one thousand articles, and countless speeches and letters. Collected here in one volume are examples of Roosevelt’s voluminous writings covering a dazzling array of topics.
 
“Roosevelt was not only astonishingly prolific, he was thoughtful, thorough... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.
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