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Gift Idea Number 1 – Dickens at Christmas

Gift Idea No. 1 – Dickens at Christmas

Somehow, Dickens and Christmas have become almost synonymous. It is the very spirit of Christmas which Dickens conjured from his fertile and so charitable mind – and this is the kind of celebration of the Yuletide Feast which over the years we have come to accept as being the archetypal Christmas.

After the massive success attained with A Christmas Carol in 1843 Dickens continued the series throughout the 1840s, maintaining what he called “the Carol philosophy” to “strike a sledgehammer blow” for the poor, uneducated, and repressed. In typical Dickens fashion he drove his message home with a mixture of humour and good cheer. The Christmas Books were: A Christmas Carol 1843, The Chimes 1844, The Cricket on the Hearth 1845, The Battle Of Life 1846, The Haunted Man 1848,

Dickens discontinued the Christmas books after The Haunted Man, devoting his “spare” time to the publication of weekly magazines, Household Words (1850-1858) and All the Year Round (1859-1867), in which he included annual Christmas Stories. Included are fictional sketches verging on the autobiographical, recollections of childhood, reflections on past holidays and old friends, as well as tales of misunderstandings and lost opportunities. Humorous, tragic, uplifting, richly human, they reaffirm the virtue of nurturing our traditions, and offer a master storyteller’s vision of the real meaning of Christmas. These Christmas stories, together with the Christmas books, forever linked Dickens with the celebration of Christmas.

Find More Dickens at Charles Dickens Books

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2018 Charity Book Giveaway

2018 Charity Book Giveaway

Don’t miss The Annual Charity Book Giveaway this Saturday (14/7/18)

Venue: Moortown Baptist Church, 204 King Lane, Leeds LS17 6AA.

In aid of Sunshine & Smiles, the Leeds Down Syndrome Network.

Lots of books for FREE, entry by voluntary donation, then simply help yourself to as many books as you want.

Please support this very worthwhile charity.

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Superb Anthony Trollope Sale

Superb Anthony Trollope Sale

In his own time, Trollope’s novels were as popular with the common reader as they were admired by George Eliot, Henry James, George Bernard Shaw and Nathaniel Hawthorne. Today, he is probably the most widely read and loved nineteenth century English Novelists after Dickens and Jane Austen.

A series of books set in the imaginary English county of Barsetshire remains his best loved and most famous work, but he also wrote convincing novels of political life as well as studies that show great psychological penetration. One of his greatest strengths was a steady, consistent vision of the social structures of Victorian England, which he re-created in his books with unusual solidity.

Starting in 1989 The Folio Society began publishing the first complete edition of Trollope’s novels and continued at the rate of several per year until all 47 novels had been published.

This superb uniformly bound complete collection is generally available on my website together with the edition that was later produced by the Folio Society for the Trollope Society.

View now The Complete Folio Society Anthony Trollope Novels

View now The Trollope Society Novels

For a limited period, I have reduced the price of all my stock of individual novels to the amazing price of £9.99 which when you consider that the postage alone, which by the way is included in the price, in most cases costs me £5.50 is a real bargain.

View now Castle Richmond

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Franklin Library – The Ultimate Private Library

Franklin Library – The Ultimate Private Library

From the early 1970s until 2000, Franklin Library, a division of The Franklin Mint developed a following by providing beautifully bound editions that would not break the bank. Known for beautiful leather bindings, Franklin Library books were published in three styles, full genuine leather, imitation leather, and quarter bound genuine leather. The full leather bound editions were produced throughout the Library’s lifespan but the other two styles (imitation and quarter bound) were only published in the 1970s and ‘80s. For this reason all Franklin Library editions are now considered “out of print” and are no longer available for sale from the Franklin Mint.

The 100 Greatest Books of All Time series is among the most collectable Franklin Library collections. Published between 1974 and 1982, the heavily illustrated 100 Greatest Books of All Time collection features remarkable works by literature’s most legendary writers. Readers will find Charlotte Bronte, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Shakespeare, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Goethe, Robert Frost, William Faulkner, Ernest Hemingway, Herman Melville and John Donne among the long list of greats. Along with each book subscribers received a brief reader’s guide commenting on the content of the book and its author, the design and illustration of the volume, and the enduring significance of the work in world literature.

All Editions were produced using high quality paper with pages that are sewn not glued into the binding and gold gilded page edges on all three sides. Raised spine bands give each book that distinctive antique look. The genuine full leather bound editions are the highest quality of the three. While most characteristics remained constant throughout the different series and years of production the style of end papers varied from silk moiré to decorative paper. The full genuine leather binding had 22k. gold lettering and stampings on the spine and covers and is the only edition that has the attached silk page marker.

This exclusive edition of “The 100 Greatest Books Of All Time” was privately printed and bound solely for those who subscribed to the complete collection. The books were never offered to the general public nor were they sold in bookshops and were not sold singly. This superb collection was published in a single Limited Edition.

Browse the books available at Franklin Library

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Latest Folio Society Arrivals

Latest Folio Society Arrivals

Just arrived 3 fine Folio Society collections;

The Second World War Winston Churchill 6 Vols Folio Society 2003

This can honestly be called the definitive edition, using the final English texts, completely reset in Ehrhardt type, printed on Caxton wove paper, profusely illustrated with photos & in-text maps. History of World War II from the top, being the personal account of British Prime Minister Winston Churchill, who many rightly regard as the greatest man of the 20th century. Volume titles; The Gathering Storm; Their Finest Hour; The Grand Alliance; The Hinge of Fate; Closing The Ring & Triumph and Tragedy. Six volumes in two dark brown titled slip-cases, with a monochrome photograph of Churchill on the front panel.

Thomas Hardy 6 Volume Boxed Set Folio Society 1993

Six of the most popular Hardy novels in one fine boxed set. The novels are : “Far From the Madding Crowd”, “Tess of the d’Urbervilles”, “The Mayor of Casterbridge”,” The Return of the Native”, The Trumpet Major” and “Under the Greenwood Tree”.

Somerset Maugham Collected Short Stories 4 Vols Folio Society 1998

A superb collection of seventy one short stories from one of the masters of this genre. Following the arrangement of Collected Short Stories first published by Pan Books Ltd. In 1975.

Just In…..

Rarely Seen Agatha Christie autobiography

I have just acquired a copy of the rarely seen The Mystery of Agatha Christie by Gwen Robyns in the Heron Books uniformly bound edition. This volume is available with the 41 volume Agatha Christie collection see below or individually see above.

Browse all my books at Hcbooksonline

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The Craft of Raymond Chandler

Crafting and Recrafting the Creations of Raymond Chandler

If you suspect that you may be on the verge of a midlife crisis, having reached your forties and still not really found what you want to do with your life (or perhaps being overwhelmed with a feeling that you haven’t yet reached your full potential) then you can take heart from the story of Raymond Chandler. Chandler was working as an company executive until the Great Depression struck America and he found himself without a job: it was only at that point, and at the age of 44, that he made the decision to become a detective fiction writer instead. His fame now is testament to the fact that that career was, of course, an incredible success.

Raymond Chandler was famed for his direct and sparse prose, with many of his contemporary critics struggling to see his great works as important literature. However that is exactly what they are: Incredibly important works that were incredibly well written, and it is only as time progresses that the magnitude of his contributions are to be fully understood. The influence that Chandler’s works had on American popular literature really shouldn’t be underestimated, nor should the fact that without his contribution, it is unlikely that the genre of hard boiled detective drama would even exist.

The Craft of Writing

Despite starting his career writing what he himself believed to be ‘trash fiction’ in order to make a quick buck, Chandler was truly devoted to the craft of writing, and to honing that craft in order to become the best writer he could possibly be. Chandler worked hard at crafting and recrafting his work. His brutal and simplistic prose was no doubt the result of his meticulous reediting process, as he himself once wrote: “A good story cannot be devised; it has to be distilled. I always regard the first draft as raw material. What seems to be alive in it is what belongs in the story.” Writing didn’t always come naturally to him, and when he found that he was suffering from writer’s block Chandler turned to drink, believing that it helped to cure his writers block and become a better writer: of course, this was far from true.

Whilst he was committed to crafting his works, Chandler didn’t write in a conventional way: there was never a draft, a plan, or even a plot line to follow, he simply started writing letting the characters and stories evolve themselves on the page. This risky writing strategy only worked so well because of Chandlers sheer determination to create, the write, to succeed. When pitching to an audience, Chandler came into his own: he made his creation process seem so effortless. His private letters reveal though that this was far from the case: that everything he crafted mattered to him deeply and he fought hard, within himself, to create.

The Art of Drinking

Whilst he was committed to recrafting his works, Chandler found that he was unable to recraft himself. Unfortunately, like many of the nation’s greatest writers, Chandler’s life was not untinged by tragedy and by trials and tribulations: namely, the author’s rampant alcoholism. With the support of friends, Chandler spent many years in and out of professional health facilities in order to receive treatment and rehabilitation for his alcoholism, however, although he had periods of sobriety, it was an illness that the writer never overcame. When his beloved wife died in 1954, Chandler was truly heartbroken, and it was at this point that his rampant alcoholism reached the point of no return. He began to really suffer with the clinical depression that had tinged much of his adult life, and in 1955 even attempted suicide, although this was seen as an obvious cry for help rather than a genuine attempt to end his life (given that he had called the police before the attempt so that they would be able to find him in time). Although he continued to keep writing throughout this difficult period of alcoholism, the works Chandler was producing at this time were markedly substandard when compared to his earlier novels. Chandler ultimately succumbed to illness (no doubt induced by his alcohol addiction) and died in 1959. In his best loved works however, Chandler lives on.

This article is by courtesy of Helen Salter

Browse all my books at Hcbooksonline