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Essays

Most popular at the top

  • The John McPhee Readerby John McPhee; William L. Howarth

    Farrar, Straus and Giroux 2011; US$ 22.99

    The John McPhee Reader , first published in 1976, is comprised of selections from the author's first twelve books. In 1965, John McPhee published his first book, A Sense of Where You Are ; a decade later, he had published eleven others. His fertility, his precision and grace as a stylist, his wit and uncanny brilliance in choosing subject matter,... more...

  • How To Survive From Nine To Fiveby Jilly Cooper

    Random House 2012; US$ 4.78

    Jilly Cooper's witty thumbnail sketch of office life - part valentine, part poison pen letter - offers a vivid evocation of the world in which many of us spend a large part of our lives. There will be few office workers, whether they are bosses, sekketries or office crones, who do not recognize the Machiavellian politics and the lunacies she describes.... more...

  • Everything I Need to Know I Learned from a Children's Bookby Anita Silvey

    Roaring Brook Press 2009; US$ 30.99

    "What children's book changed the way you see the world?" Anita Silvey asked this question to more than one hundred of our most respected and admired leaders in society, and she learned about the books that shaped financiers, actors, singers, athletes, activists, artists, comic book creators, novelists, illustrators, teachers... The lessons they... more...

  • Urne-Burialby Thomas Browne

    Penguin Books Ltd 2005; US$ 6.38

    Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves - and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives - and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals... more...

  • Small Wonderby Barbara Kingsolver

    Faber & Faber 2011; US$ 14.57

    In this collection of essays, the author of High Tide in Tucson brings to us (out of one of history's darker moments) an extended love song to the world we still have. From its opening parable gleaned from recent news about a lost child saved in an astonishing way, the book moves on to consider a world of surprising and hopeful prospects ranging from... more...

  • Consolation in the Face of Deathby Samuel Johnson

    Penguin Books Ltd 2009; US$ 7.98

    In his moving essay, Samuel Johnson offers wise words on confronting grief at the loss of a loved one. The other pieces here, ranging from art to marriage to morality, demonstrate the brilliance, perception and wit that made Johnson the leading man of letters of his day, and one of the finest essayists in the English language. Throughout history,... more...

  • Decline of the English Murderby George Orwell

    Penguin Books Ltd 2009; US$ 7.98

    In these timeless and witty essays George Orwell explores the English love of reading about a good murder in the papers (and laments the passing of the heyday of the 'perfect' murder involving class, sex and poisoning), as well as unfolding his trenchant views on everything from boys' weeklies to naughty seaside postcards. Throughout history,... more...

  • On Powerby William Shakespeare

    Penguin Books Ltd 2009; US$ 7.98

    These are Shakespeare's greatest writings on power in all its forms - in love, in war, in politics and in the family. From Macbeth's vaulting ambition to Richard II's fragile grip on authority, from the violent rivalries of King Lear to the exquisite poetry of the love sonnets, these pieces show, with philosophical subtlety and psychological acuity,... more...

  • The Decay of Lying: And Other Essaysby Oscar Wilde

    Penguin Books Ltd 2010; US$ 11.18

    In 'The Decay of Lying' Oscar Wilde uses his decadent ideology in an attempt to reverse and therefore reject his audiences' 'normal' conceptualizations of nature, art and morality. Wilde's views of life and art are illustrated through the use of Platonic dialogue where the character Vivian takes on the persona of Wilde. Wilde's goal is to subvert the... more...

  • On Solitudeby Michel de Montaigne

    Penguin Books Ltd 2009; US$ 7.98

    Blending intellectual speculation with anecdote and personal reflection, the Renaissance thinker and writer Montaigne pioneered the modern essay. This selection contains his idiosyncratic and timeless writings on subjects as varied as the virtues of solitude, the power of the imagination, the pleasures of reading, the importance of sleep and why we... more...