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CLASSICS CLUB — Book Authors

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All CLASSIC CLUB Books Authors

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  • Author: Jane Addams  ( 1 Book Title )
    Illinois native Jane Addams was the daughter of a prosperous Quaker businessman. The founder of Hull House, she devoted her life to furthering social reform and was involved in the passage of many early labor laws, including the abolition of child labor, the establishiment of juvenile court law, tenement house regulation, an eight-hour working day for women, factory inspection, and workmen's compensation. In 1931, she received a Nobel Prize in recognition of her pioneering social work.

  • Author: Victor Appleton  ( 15 Book Titles )
    By 1910, "Victor Appleton" had already published "Tom Swift and his Motor-Cycle, Or, Fun and Adventures on the Road," "Tom Swift and his Motor-Boat," "Tom Swift and his Airship," "Tom Swift and his Submarine Boat," and "Tom Swift and his Electric Runabout, Or, the Speediest Car on the Road." And, according to the copyright page of one book, he had "other volumes in preparation." Not bad, for a man who never existed!

  • Author: Louisa May Alcott  ( 1 Book Title )
    Daughter of the transcendentalist intellectual, Bronson Alcott, and a close friend of the philosopher-writers of Concord and Boston, she was nonetheless a child of necessity most of her life. After working as a seamstress, a teacher, and as a Civil War nurse, her letters were published in book form as Hospital Sketches in 1863. This was her first real writing success. Five years later she wrote a book for girls based on her childhood experiences. Little Women which enabled her, at last, to pay off her family's debts, and her subsequent children's books eventually freed her from financial fears.

  • Author: Marcus Aurelius  ( 1 Book Title )
    (121-180) The Roman Emperor Marcus Aurelius was probably the greatest of the Stoic philosophers. When he was still a very young man, his uncle was adopted by the Emperor Hadrian and thus made the heir apparent to the ruler. The uncle in his turn adopted his philosopher-nephew who eventually became emperor.

  • Author: Jane Austen  ( 4 Book Titles )
    (1775-1817) Jane Austin was the seventh child of English clergyman George Austin and his wife, Cassandra. At 17, she was already attempting serious writing, and by the time she was 20, she had already completed a novel called "Elinor and Marianne," which later became the basis for "Sense and Sensibility." The first versions of "First Impressions" — later to become her masterwork, "Pride and Prejudice" — were written in the following two years.

  • Author: L. Frank Baum  ( 2 Book Titles )
    (1856-1919) Stories told to his four young sons led L. Frank Baum to write The Wizard of Oz in 1900. Its success inspired a host of sequels, as well as later plays and films. Baum ultimately called himself "The Royal Historian" — and so he was. His rulers were the generations of children and adults who have loved his wonderful stories for over a hundred years! So here they are: Ozma and Dorothy, the Scarecrow, the Tin Woodman, The Patchwork Girl, Jack Pumpkinhead, and all the other marvelous creatures that inhabit the lands of Oz!

  • Author: Charlotte Bronte  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1816-1855) Charlotte Bronte, her two older sisters, her younger sisters Emily and Anne, and her brother Branwell were the children of Patrick Bronte, the rector of Haworth, in Yorkshire, England. Their mother, Marie, also the daughter of a clergyman, died in 1821, when Charlotte was five years old and Anne, the youngest, was not yet two.

  • Author: Edgar Rice Burroughs  ( 17 Book Titles )
    (1875-1950) The Chicago-born creator of one of the best-loved (and often parodied) adventure characters, "Tarzan of the Apes," Edgar Rice Burroughs had also been a soldier, a business executive, a gold miner, a cowboy, and a policeman. After writing "Tarzan" in 1914, he produced more than 20 sequels which were translated into more than 50 languages, and which formed the basis of dozens of films. In 1917, Burroughs also created the character of John Carter of Mars, plus many other adventure tales with a science fiction theme.

  • Author: Lewis Carroll  ( 2 Book Titles )
    (1832-1898) Englishman Charles Dodson thought of himself as a scholar and teacher of mathematics at Christ Church, Oxford, rather than as an author. When he did write books, his first published work was a syllabus of plane geometry, followed by a biography of Euclid. His best known books, The Alice In Wonderland series, reflect the complex abstraction of higher mathematics, at the same time capturing the simple innocence of childhood.

  • Author: G. K. Chesterton  ( 1 Book Title )
    During his lifetime, English author and journalist Gilbert Keith Chesterton was known for his writings in social and literary criticism, criticism, and, later in life, religious argument. Brilliantly intellectual, he was part of a literary circle that included such Bernard Shaw, H.G. Wells, and Hillaire Belloc. He championed political integrity and in the last years before his death was deeply critical of the rising Nazi regime in Germany. But he is probably best remembered as a mystery writer — the author of this book, and of the "Father Brown" mystery series.

  • Author: Agatha Christie  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1891-1976) English mystery writer, Agatha Christie, was the creator of detective Hercule Poirot, and also of the clever, innocent-seeming Miss Marple, a sedate elderly lady from a small English town. These characters have taken on such a life of their own that they made Christie (Mrs. Mallowan) a rich and famous woman. In addition, they helped her earn the honor of Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire and the right to call herself Dame Agatha.

  • Author: Confucious  ( 1 Book Title )
    (551-474 B.C.) Confucious, the most famous person in the whole long history of China, was not a king, not a warrior, and not a rich man; nor was he a religious leader. He was largely self-educated, and he never realized his own greatest ambitions. He taught not merely the rich and the great, but even the poorest and humblest, accepting any student who was earnest and intelligent. Yet the ethical philosophy he developed has persisted for almost 2,500 years, and is with us still.

  • Author: Joseph Conrad  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1857-1924)Born Josef Teodor Konrad Nalecz Korzeniowski in the Polish Ukraine, he was orphaned at the age of ten and grew up in Cracow under the care of his uncle Tadeusz Bobrowski. He went to sea at the age of 17 and did not learn English, the language in which his novels were written, until he was in his twenties. Thus it is no surprise that he did not complete his first book until he was 38 years old. Heart of Darkness was completed in 1902.

  • Author: Charles Dickens  ( 6 Book Titles )
    (1812-1870) The prodigious Charles Dickens, coming from an impoverished and unhappy childhood, was a lifelong champion of hungry children and needy families. His books had an immense impact on the social conscience of his day. But although he pities the down-at-the-heel slackers he writes about, he laughs at them — as well as at the pompous bullies in his stories. His massive novels are crammed with incident — catastrophic love affairs, murders, unjust accusations, lost heirs, drunken brawls, monsters, dying children, and mistaken identities. He shows all that is humorous, piteous, dramatic, and melodramatic about the complex lives of his many hundreds of memorable characters, and frequently . . . all at the same time!

  • Author: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle  ( 5 Book Titles )
    (1859-1930) Most readers know English writer Arthur Conan Doyle as the creator of Sherlock Holmes, with his hawkish profile and rapier-quick mind. Many also know that Doyle was a doctor before he was a writer, and thus in real life more like Watson than Holmes. But fewer know that his 1902 knighthood was conferred, not because he was the creator of the Great Detective, but to acknowledge his outstanding medical work with the Langman field hospital during the Bloemfontein, his history of the Boer War in 1900, and a pamphlet (a small monograph on the subject?) written in 1902, defending the actions of the British army.

  • Author: Alexandre Dumas  ( 4 Book Titles )
    (1802-1870) A dramatist, an immensely prolific writer, and a wild spender, the French writer, Alexandre Dumas, Père, (the father, so-called to distinguish him from his writer-son, who bore the same name) was author of many dozens of successful — and some not so successful — romantic plays, farces, and dramas that were produced in Paris theaters throughout most of his life, beginning in the early 1820s.

  • Author: Benjamin Franklin  ( 1 Book Title )
    Benjamin Franklin was one of the most capable and original minds in all of America's history. A printer, a writer, an inventor, and a brilliant politician, he helped to draft the Declaration of Independence and the Federal Constitution. A diplomat, a wit, and a sage, he was trusted by all who knew him. And his brilliant, small autobiography shows you how and why!

  • Author: Zane Grey  ( 8 Book Titles )
    (1875-1939) Zane Grey was perhaps the most successful writer of Western novels in the world. Born in Zanesville, Ohio, he was a New York dentist until 1904, after which he authored some 60 novels of the old west, including "Riders of the Purple Sage," "The Lone Star Ranger," "Code of the West," and "West of the Pecos." Many of his novels were made into films, and many continue to be best-sellers, over 60 years after their author's death.

  • Author: Bret Harte  ( 1 Book Title )
    Francis Bret Harte virtually invented the style of short story that made him famous. The mannerisms and pungent speech of his characters, and the clever, often tricky endings of his stories helped to make him a rich and famous author in his day. Born in Albany, New York in 1836, he spent his young manhood in California. Although his actual contact with the gold camps was very brief, his journalist's imagination mined them for stories during most of his life. His reputation rests on the quality and humor of his short stories — at one point his contributions to the prestigious Atlantic Monthly commanded the then-highest sum ever paid for such work.

  • Author: Hackers - Courtesy of the Gutenberg Project  ( 1 Book in 2 Volumes )
    This On-Line Hacker Jargon File, Volume 2.9.10, JULY 1, 1992, is a comprehensive compendium of hacker slang illuminating many aspects of hackish tradition, folklore, and humor. PART I includes the introduction, and an alphabetical "dictionary," from "A" through "N." The remainder of the dictionary, plus selected anecdotes appear in PART II.

  • Author: Henry James  ( 3 Book Titles )
    (1843-1916) The shy, bookish Bostonian, younger brother of psychologist-philosopher William James, is acknowledged as one of the most influential theorists of fiction in the English-speaking world. By the time he was 25, he was a regular contributor to the prestigious Atlantic Monthly and The North American Review and was hailed as the "Best writer of short stories in America." He is also one of its greatest novelists.

  • Author: William James  ( 1 Book Title in 2 Volumes )
    (1842-1910) Born in New York City into a brilliant, eccentric family which also produced his younger brother, novelist Henry James, William James was a distinguished psychologist and philosopher who has been called the foremost thinker ever produced in America. He was one of the developers of Pragmatism, which argues that our acts, our characters, and our beliefs are in our own hands, and are not pre-established in any way. We are the active agents that integrate and create the societies we live in, the creators of the daily history of the world. It is we who validate our own beliefs by living them . . . we who invalidate our beliefs by failing to live them. Personally, William James argued for freedom and change, and opposed absolutes and dogmatism.

  • Author: Rudyard Kipling  ( 4 Book Titles )
    (1865-1936) The British author and poet, Rudyard Kipling, was born in Bombay, India, to British parents. His father was both an artist and a scholar and was for many years the curator of the Lahore Museum there. The description of the Keeper of the Wonder House in the opening chapter of Kim is a faithful description of — and a tribute to — his father.

  • Author: Andrew Lang, Editor  ( 6 Book Titles )
    (1844-1912) Scotsman Andrew Lang was a scholar, an anthropologist, and a writer. In addition to authoring several novels and histories, and a volume of poetry and ballads, he was a serious student of world folklore. From 1889 through 1907 he collected and edited numerous folk tales and fairy tales from France, England, Germany, Scandinavia, and Greece. His books of fairy tales are a staple of all generations of children (and adults.)

  • Author: Lao-Tze, Translated By James Legge  ( 1 Book Title )
    The Tao-Teh King, the book central to the practice of Taoism, is attributed to the Chinese scholar Lao-Tzu (6th century B.C.). It was codified over 2,000 years ago, and as it contains between 5,227 and 5,722 words, it is often called the 5,000 character classic.

  • Author: The Princess Der Ling  ( 1 Book Title )
    Lord Yu Keng was one of the most advanced and progressive Chinese officials of his generation. His daughters were educated in missionary schools and later attended a convent school in France. Der Ling became a member of French society, and when her father was recalled to China, she became First Lady-in-Waiting to the Empress Dowager. Her fresh, original narrative about the Empress and Chinese court life reveal the secrets of the Forbidden City during the early years of the 20th century.

  • Author: Jack London  ( 14 Book Titles )
    (1876-1916) California-born novelist, John Griffith London, quit school at the age of 14 and ran off to find a life of adventure. He found what he looked for. Much like Melville's Ishmael he went to sea, although hunting seal rather than whales, and sailed as far as Japan in the process. At about age 17, he marched on Washington with Kelly's Industrial Army, a protest group assembled during the financial panic of 1893. During the depression that followed, he became a railroad tramp and even served a prison term for vagrancy. The life he led gave him a painful look at human suffering — as well as bitter first-hand experience. By the age of 18, after reading Karl Marx, he embraced Socialism, and some of his books reflect that belief.

  • Author: Nicolo Machiavelli, Translated By W. K. Marriot  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1469-1527) A relatively obscure public servant, although from one of the influential families in Florence, Italy, Machiavelli lived in a land and time dominated by two terrible families: The Borgias and The Medicis. Thus he was in a position to observe cruelty, depravity, and the ruthless use of power at close hand. During the latter part of his life, he created several major works of historical philosophy based on the political realities of his time — The Prince, is the foremost of these.

  • Author: Herman Melville  ( 1 Book Title in 3 volumes )
    (1819-1891) Melville was a schoolteacher and then a seaman on a whaling ship before he became a writer, and his early novels describe his sea-going experiences in the far parts of the earth. "Typee," describes his stay among cannibals in the Marquesqas Islands; "Omoo," a humorous novel and social commentary about his wanderings in Tahiti with "Doctor" Long Ghost, includes a brief mutiny at sea. His masterpiece, "Moby Dick," uses the life of a whaling ship as a backdrop for all its action.

  • Author: A.A. Milne  ( 1 Book Title )
    Yes, this is the same author who created Winnie-ther-Pooh and the charming verses in When We Were Very Young and Now We Are Six. Here, he shows himself to be an excellent mystery writer as well. The well-plotted, amusing Red House Mystery is sure to keep you guessing.

  • Author: O. Henry ( William Sidney Porter )  ( 4 Book Titles )
    (1862-1910) Short-story writer Sidney Porter's early life was one of hard knocks and strong recoveries. He was born in North Carolina just before the start of the Civil War. When he was 20 years old, he moved to Texas to become a cowboy, but was set to herding sheep and carrying the mail. So two years later, he moved to Austin soon became a bank teller. After his marriage in 1887, he launched an humor magazine, and when that failed, he moved on to become a reporter, columnist and occasional cartoonist at the Houston Post.

  • Author: Tom Paine, plus other authors of America's freedom  ( 1 Book Title )
    Contents of the book: The Magna Carta; The Mayflower Compact: The Declaration of Independence; Patrick Henry's speech: "Give me Liberty, or give me Death!" Tom Paine's COMMON SENSE; Preamble to The Constitution of the United States; The Words of Chief Joseph; Abraham Lincoln's First Inagural Address; The Emancipation Proclamation; The Gettysburg Address; The Life and Adventures of Calamity Jane; The Inaugural Address of John Fitzgerald Kennedy; I Have a Dream, by Martin Luther King

  • Author: Plato, Translated By Benjamin Jowett  ( 2 Book Titles )
    (circa 428 B.C. - circa 348 B.C) The philosopher Plato was arguably the foremost writer and teacher of ancient Greece, and his influence on thought has been apparent for over 2,400 years!

  • Author: Edgar Allan Poe  ( 3 Book Titles )
    (1809-1849) Son of an American actor and an English actress, Poe was orphaned early, and he was adopted and raised by his godfather, John Allen, and his wife. After a classical education, he entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, but left the academy without graduating, due at least in part to his gambling and drinking. He began writing and publishing poetry before he was out of his 'teens.

  • Author: Mary Roberts Rinehart  ( 2 Book Titles )
    Mary Roberts Rinehart (1876-1958) was a popular and prolific writer of romantic mysteries. Trained as a nurse, and married to a physician, she turned to writing in 1903 when her family was in financial difficulties and was almot instantly successful. The Circular Staircase and The Man in Lower Ten are her most popular mysteries. Her books feature charming gentlemen, beautiful women, and plenty of civilized thrills and surprises.

  • Author: Anna Sewell  ( 1 Book Title )
    Although herself an invalid and hardly able to walk, Anna Sewell's heart went out to the sufferings of the helpless horses who powered England's wheels before the days of engines, trucks, and cars. Her touching book did much to rouse public opinion against the cruel treatment to which work horses were often subjected. And her pen supplied the horsepower that helped to change the world she lived in.

  • Author: Count Leo Tolstoy  ( 1 Book Title )
    A harsh social critic, though not a reformer, Count Leo Tolstoy believed that the society he lived in was absolutely corrupt and corrupting, as was all society everywhere. He believed in absolute equality and that his first duty was to abstain from living by the work of others and from taking part in the "organized violence" of Government. He gave away much of his ancestral fortune, and in attempting to live like his peasants and with them, he became estranged from most of his family and remained so until the time of his death. He is considered one of the most important names in Russian Literature largely on the basis of his two greatest literary works: War and Peace. and Anna Karenena. This book, Thoughts on the Moscow Census, reflects his powerful social consciousness.

  • Author: Mary Wollstonecraft ( Godwin ) Shelley  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1797-1851) Mary Shelley, daughter of the English economist and bookseller, William Godwin, was barely eighteen years old when she eloped with the poet, Percy Bysshe Shelley. She was 21, at most, when her great horror novel, Frankenstein, was written. The book was created as the result of friendly contest among the Shelleys, the poet Byron,and their guests. They were competing to see who could write the most effective horror fantasy; history has judged that Mary Shelley won.

  • Author: Robert Louis Stevenson  ( 5 Book Titles )
    (1850-1894) Despite the fact that the Scottish novelist, poet, and essayist suffered from acutely poor health all his life, he traveled widely, going to America in 1879. He lived there during the year in which he wooed and married his American wife. They journeyed across Europe and, after being diagnosed with tuberculosis, to the south seas where they lived until his death at the age of forty-four.

  • Author: Sun Tzu, Translated From Chinese By Lionel Giles  ( 1 Book Title )
    (Circa 100 B.C. - 100 A.D.) The legendary "warrior philosopher," Sun Tzu, who is credited with authoring "The Art of War," is described as both a superb general and a follower of the Tao philosophy/religion. This appears to be a contradiction in terms, as TAO 49 states: The Tao person dwells in peace: / Reaching out in a community of heart, / Regarding that all lives as one family. For many years, this book has been recommended as the one best handbook for business success — a commentary on the nature of modern business practices as well as on the quality of the book!

  • Author: Anthony Trollope  ( 1 Book Title )
    Trollope began writing in earnest while working as a surveyor's clerk in Ireland, and after a slow beginning he learned his trade well. His output was prodigious, an during most of his career he was able to live comfortably on his earnings. He produced more than 50 novels and numerous other works besides, working steadily and writing several thousand words each day. Trollope wrote no tragedies, instead, his novels are good, entertaining stories of middle-class Victorian manners and behavior that are as amusing and charming today as they were when they were written.

  • Author: Sojourner Truth ( as narrated to Olive Gilbert )  ( 1 Book Title )
    Born a slave, and originally called Isabella, she later took the name Sojourner Truth. In this, her dictated autobiography, she describes the trials through which she attained her freedom, and the impact she made on her society through her efforts and the force of her personality. It is a stirring, true tale of a remarkable woman and her tireless work to change the inequities of the world in which she lived. It was completed during her lifetime, and written down by her friend, Olive Gilbert, who was a member of the free community where she settled during the latter part of her life. This important book is a must-read for every American!

  • Author: Mark Twain ( Samuel Langhorne Clemens )  ( 3 Book Titles )
    (1835-1910) Sam Clemens, a native of Missouri, lived and worked along the Mississippi River as a young man. With not much formal schooling, he was apprenticed to a printer, and as a young man he worked as a printer and a newspaper writer. He enjoyed a short but successful career as a riverboat pilot (a highly respectable position), and after a brief stint in the militia during the Civil War, he joined his brother in Nevada and resumed writing — this time as free-lance writer and columnist.

  • Author: Jules Verne  ( 5 Book Titles )
    (1828-1905) Born in Nantes, France, Verne's first training was as a lawyer, but he soon turned to adventure writing. His first success was Cinq semaines en ballon (Five Weeks in a Balloon), and thereafter, he produced a long series of marvelous tales at the rate of approximately one a year for the next 25 years. His most successful books include Journey to the Center of the Earth, From the Earth to the Moon, 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, and Around the World in 80 days.

  • Author: Booker T. Washington  ( 1 Book Title )
    Born in 1856, in a slave hut and into utmost poverty, Booker Taliaferro Washington received little schooling as a child. But his determination to learn led him at age 16 to Hampton Virginia to attend school at the Hampton Normal and Agricultural Institute, meanwhile working as a janitor to defray the expenses of his education. A brilliant speaker and thinker, Washington became president of a well-known college. A champion of education and self-sufficiency, he impressed senators and presidents, educators and businessmen, and in his middle years and later life he was honored and sought after throughout the U.S.

  • Author: H. G. Wells  ( 4 Book Titles )
    (1866-1946) Born in Bromley, Kent, England, Wells had an unpropitious start in life. Apprenticed to a draper when he was 14, he tried and rejected several other trades, and after finding work as a schoolmaster's assistant, he won a scholarship to study biology and graduated from London University in 1888. His best known books today are his early works of science fiction.

  • Author: Oscar Wilde  ( 1 Book Title )
    (1854-1900) The Irish-born author and playwrite wrote The Picture of Dorian Gray 1891, followed in the next years by several highly successful plays, including Lady Windermere's Fan, An Ideal Husband, and The Importance of Being Earnest. His wit and talent made him the darling of London, but his private life violated the norms of Victorian society, and in 1895, he was convicted of having shared what he described as "the love that dare not speak its name" and was sentenced to two years imprisonment at hard labor. His health was seriously impaired by the time he was released, and he died in Paris three years later.

  • Author: Harry Leon Wilson  ( 1 Book Title )
    Harry Leon Wilson's humorous twist on the old Cinderella tale is not exactly "Pretty Woman," but it is a story of romance and rescue nevertheless. And although Merton's dreams come true (after an odd fashion) by the end of the story he is a sadder and wiser man. "Merton of the Movies" has been parodied a hundred times or more, but it still has the power to charm the reader, who is sure to get the point far earlier than poor Merton does. This book is a true classic ... in its own way.

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