Around The World In Eighty Days  (1873)

Around The World In Eighty Days

by Jules Verne

Around the World in Eighty Days (French: Le tour du monde en quatre-vingts jours) is a classic adventure novel by the French writer Jules Verne, published in 1873. In the story, Phileas Fogg of London and his newly employed French valet Passepartout attempt to circumnavigate the world in 80 days on a wager ...

Awakening of Helen Richie  (1906)

Awakening of Helen Richie

by Margaret Deland

Helena Richie leaves a drunken husband, who had killed their child, and goes to Old Chester with her friend Lloyd Pryor. Most believe the newcomers Helena and Lloyd are brother and sister, and Helena adopts a homeless boy, David, who had been a ward of the town's minister, Dr. Lavendar.

Babbitt  (1922)


by Sinclair Lewis

Babbitt, first published in 1922, is a novel by Sinclair Lewis. Largely a satire of American culture, society, and behavior, it critiques the vacuity of middle-class American life and its pressure toward conformity. An immediate and controversial bestseller, Babbitt is one of Lewis' best-known novels and was influential in the decision to award him the Nobel Prize in literature in 1930.

The Beautiful and Damned  (1922)

The Beautiful and Damned

by F Scott Fitzgerald

Set in an era of intoxicating excitement and ruinous excess, changing manners and challenged morals, F. Scott Fitzgerald’s second novel chronicles the lives of Harvard-educated Anthony Patch and his beautiful, willful wife, Gloria.

Daisy Miller  (1877)

Daisy Miller

by Henry James

This famous novel by Henry James portrays the courtship of the beautiful American girl Daisy Miller by Winterbourne, a sophisticated compatriot of hers. His pursuit of her is hampered by her own flirtatiousness, which is frowned upon by the other expatriates when they meet in Switzerland and Italy.

A Daughter of the Land  (1918)

A Daughter of the Land

by Gene Stratton Porter

A Daughter of the Land is set in Gene Stratton Porter's Limberlost series. Kate Bates lives in a man's world. It her dream to own and run her own farm. To fulfill her dreams she must give up everything and start anew.

Ethan Frome  (1911)

Ethan Frome

by Edith Wharton

This story takes place against the cold, gray, bleakness of a New England winter. Ethan Frome is an isolated farmer trying to scrape out a meager living while also tending to his frigid, demanding and ungrateful wife Zeena. A ray of hope enters Ethan's life of despair when his wife's cousin Mattie arrives to help.

Freckles  (1904)


by Gene Stratton Porter

The hero is an adult orphan, just under twenty years of age, with bright red hair and a freckled complexion. His right hand is missing at the wrist, and has been since before he can remember. Raised since infancy in a Chicago orphanage, he speaks with a slight Irish accent, "scarcely definite enough to be called a brogue."

Free Air  (1919)

Free Air

by Sinclair Lewis

This road trip novel is set in the early twentieth century and follows the experiences of an aristocratic New Englander and her father as they travel by automobile from Minneapolis to Seattle. She is wooed and won by a noble but simple commoner she meets along the way. Lewis is at his usual wryly humorous self, poking fun at the upper class and treating the common people only slightly better.

A Girl of the Limberlost  (1909)

A Girl of the Limberlost

by Gene Stratton Porter

The novel is set in Indiana. Most of the action takes place either in or around the Limberlost, or in the nearby, fictional town of Onabasha. The novel's heroine, Elnora Comstock, is an impoverished young woman who lives with her widowed mother, Katharine Comstock, on the edge of the Limberlost. Elnora faces cold neglect by her mother, a woman who feels ruined by the death of her husband, Robert Comstock, who drowned in quicksand in the swamp.

The Glimpses of the Moon  (1922)

The Glimpses of the Moon

by Edith Wharton

When the novel opens, Nick and Susy are newlyweds enjoying a glimpse of the moon from the country home that they've borrowed from a friend for their honeymoon. Nick and Susy aren't typical newlyweds though. They have a deal and figure they'll be married to each other for about a year. At the end of that time (roughly determined as the amount of time in which they, the vastly entertaining but poor couple, can live off of their incredibly wealthy friends), they assume they will divorce and each remarry someone more suitable, by which they mean rich.

Great Expectations  (1861)

Great Expectations

by Charles Dickens

The novel is set in Kent and London in the early to mid-19th century and contains some of Dickens' most memorable scenes, including the opening in a graveyard, where the young Pip is accosted by the escaped convict, Abel Magwitch. Great Expectations is full of extreme imagery; poverty, prison ships and chains, and fights to the death and has a colorful cast of characters who have entered popular culture.

Heart of the Hills  (1913)

Heart of the Hills

by John Fox Jr

First published in 1913, The Heart of the Hills is the last novel completed by John Fox Jr. and the final piece in his mountain trilogy. This companion to The Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come and The Trail of the Lonesome Pine is crucial to an understanding of Fox's views.

Her Father's Daughter  (1921)

Her Father's Daughter

by Gene Stratton Porter

HER FATHER'S DAUGHTER (1921) by Gene Stratton Porter is the story of Linda Strong, the titular heroine, a determined and opinionated young woman growing up in California in the 1920s. What could have been a typically charming and heartfelt story of personal discovery, loves and relationships by the beloved naturalist author is unfortunately marred by the strongly pronounced racist and anti-immigrant mindset of the heroine and several other characters. It must be pointed out that the racial prejudice portrayed here is typical of its time and must be viewed in a socio-historical context.

A House Boat on the Styx  (1895)

A House Boat on the Styx

by John Kendrick Bangs

The premise of the book is that everyone who has ever died has gone to Styx, the river that circles the underworld. The book begins with Charon, ferryman of the Styx being startled and annoyed by the arrival of a houseboat on the Styx. At first afraid that the boat will put him out of business, he later finds out that he is actually to be appointed the boat's janitor. What follows are eleven more stories (for a total of twelve) which are set on the house boat.

The House of Mirth  (1905)

The House of Mirth

by Edith Wharton

The House of Mirth tells the story of Lily Bart, a well-born but impoverished woman belonging to New York City's high society around the turn of the last century.

Howard's End  (1910)

Howard's End

by EM Forster

The book is about three families in England at the beginning of the 20th century: the Wilcoxes, rich capitalists with a fortune made in the Colonies; the half-German Schlegel siblings (Margaret, Tibby, and Helen), who have much in common with the real-life Bloomsbury Group; and the Basts, a struggling couple in the lower-middle class. The Schlegel sisters try to help the poor Basts and try to make the Wilcoxes less prejudiced.

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl  (1861)

Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl

by Harriet Jacobs

The book documents Jacobs' life as a slave and how she gained freedom for herself and for her children. Jacobs contributed to the genre of slave narrative by using the techniques of sentimental novels to address race and gender issues.

Jacob's Room  (1922)

Jacob's Room

by Virginia Woolf

Set in pre-war England, the novel begins in Jacob's childhood and follows him through college at Cambridge, and then into adulthood. The story is told mainly through the perspectives of the women in Jacob's life, including the repressed upper-middle-class Clara Durrant and the uninhibited young art student Florinda, with whom he has an affair

The Job  (1917)

The Job

by Sinclair Lewis

The Job is an early work by American novelist Sinclair Lewis. It is considered an early declaration of the rights of working women. The focus is on the main character, Una Golden, desire to establish herself in a legitimate occupation while balancing the eventual need for marriage. The story takes place in the early 1900-1920s and takes Una from a small Pennsylvania town to New York. Forced to work due to family illness, Una shows a talent for the traditional male bastion of commercial real estate and, while valued by her company, she struggles to achieve the same status of her male coworkers.

The Jungle  (1906)

The Jungle

by Upton Sinclair

The Jungle is a 1906 novel written by journalist, socialist, and politician Upton Sinclair.Sinclair wrote the novel with the intent to portray the lives of immigrants in the United States. However, readers were more concerned with the large portion of the book pertaining to the bad practices and corruption of the American meatpacking industry during the early 20th century, and the book is now often interpreted and taught as a journalist's account of the poor working conditions in the industry.

Life on the Mississippi  (1883)

Life on the Mississippi

by Mark Twain

A memoir by Mark Twain of his days as a steamboat pilot on the Mississippi River before the American Civil War, and also a travel book, recounting his trip along the Mississippi River from St. Louis to New Orleans many years after the War.

Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come  (1903)

Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come

by John Fox Jr

This is a story of Kentucky, in a settlement known as Kingdom Come. It is a life rude, semi-barbarous; but natural and honest, from which often springs the flower of civilization.Chad, the little shepherd did not know who he was nor whence he came he had just wandered from door to door since early childhood, seeking shelter with kindly mountaineers who gladly fathered and mothered this waif about whom there was such a mystery a charming waif, by the way, who could play the banjo better that anyone else in the mountains.

Little Women  (1868)

Little Women

by Louisa Alcott

Following the lives of the four March sisters, Meg, Jo, Beth and Amy, the novel details their passage from childhood to womanhood and is loosely based on the author and her three sisters.

The Lone Star Ranger  (1915)

The Lone Star Ranger

by Zane Grey

The book takes place in Texas, the Lone Star State, and several main characters are Texas Rangers, a famous band of highly capable law enforcement officers. It follows the life of Buck Duane, a man who becomes an outlaw and then redeems himself in the eyes of the law.

Magnificent Ambersons  (1918)

Magnificent Ambersons

by Booth Tarkington

The novel and trilogy trace the growth of the United States through the declining fortunes of three generations of the aristocratic Amberson family in an upper-scale Indianapolis neighborhood, between the end of the Civil War and the early part of the 20th century, a period of rapid industrialization and socio-economic change in America.

Main Street  (1920)

Main Street

by Sinclair Lewis

Carol Milford marries Will Kennicott, a doctor, who is a small-town boy at heart. Will convinces her to live in his home-town of Gopher Prairie, Minnesota, a town modeled on Sauk Centre, Minnesota, the author's birthplace. Carol is appalled at the backwardness of Gopher Prairie. But her disdain for the town's physical ugliness and smug conservatism compels her to reform it.

The Market-Place  (1899)

The Market-Place

by Harold Frederic

The hero of the story, Joel Thorpe, is one of those men, huge of body, keen of brain, with cast iron nerves, as sound a heart as most men, and a magnificent capacity for bluff. He has lived and risked and lost in a dozen countries, been almost within reach of fortune a dozen times, and always missed her until, finally, in London, by promoting a great rubber syndicate he becomes a multi-millionaire

The Melting of Molly  (1912)

The Melting of Molly

by Maria Thompson Daviess

Molly is a quirky, spirited twenty-five-year old, widowed for 6 years, living in picturesque Hillsboro with her aunt amidst gossipy neighbors, on a strict diet, and in serious boy trouble.

Mrs Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch  (1902)

Mrs Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch

by Alice Caldwell Hegan

Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch is a 1901 novel by American author Alice Caldwell Hegan, telling of a southern family's humorously coping with poverty. The book was highly popular on its release and has been adapted to film several times.

Our Mr Wrenn  (1914)

Our Mr Wrenn

by Sinclair Lewis

Mr. Wrenn, an employee of a novelty company quits his job after inheriting a fortune from his father. He decides to go traveling.

Penrod  (1914)


by Booth Tarkington

The book follows the misadventures of Penrod Schofield, an eleven-year-old boy growing up in the pre-World War I Midwestern United States, in a similar vein to The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.

The Picture of Dorian Gray  (1890)

The Picture of Dorian Gray

by Oscar Wilde

Dorian Gray is the subject of a full-length portrait in oil by Basil Hallward, an artist who is impressed and infatuated by Dorian's beauty. He believes that Dorian's beauty is responsible for the new mode in his art as a painter. Newly understanding that his beauty will fade, Dorian expresses the desire to sell his soul, to ensure that the picture, rather than he, will age and fade.

The Plastic Age  (1924)

The Plastic Age

by Percy Marks

The Plastic Age is a novel by Percy Marks, which tells the story of co-eds at a fictional college called Sanford.

Poor White  (1920)

Poor White

by Sherwood Anderson

It is the story of an inventor, Hugh McVey, who rises from poverty on the bank of the Mississippi River. The novel shows the influence of industrialism on the rural heartland of America.

The Pursuit of the House Boat  (1897)

The Pursuit of the House Boat

by John Kendrick Bangs

After the House-Boat was hijacked by Captain Kidd at the end of A House-Boat on the Styx, the various members of its club decided that in order to track it down, a detective would have to be called in. So they hired Sherlock Holmes, who, at the time of the book's publication, had indeed been declared dead by his creator.

The Right of Way  (1901)

The Right of Way

by Gilbert Parker

Charley Steele, a Canadian lawyer, goes missing and is though dead by everyone. Seeing an opportunity to changes his life, he adopts a new name.

The Secret Garden  (1911)

The Secret Garden

by Frances Hodgson Burnett

The Secret Garden is a novel by Frances Hodgson Burnett. It was initially published in serial format starting in the autumn of 1910, and was first published in its entirety in 1911. It is now one of Burnett's most popular novels, and is considered to be a classic of English children's literature. Mary Lennox is a sour-faced 10-year-old girl, who is born in India to selfish wealthy British parents who had not wanted her and were too wrapped up in their own lives.

Seventeen  (1916)


by Booth Tarkington

a humorous novel by Booth Tarkington that gently satirizes first love, in the person of a callow 17-year-old, William Sylvanus Baxter. Seventeen takes place in a small city in the Midwestern United States shortly before World War I.

The Shuttle  (1907)

The Shuttle

by Frances Hodgson Burnett

One of Burnett's longer and more complicated books for adults, it deals with themes of intermarriages between wealthy American heiresses and impoverished British nobles.

Sister Carrie  (1900)

Sister Carrie

by Theodore Dreiser

Sister Carrie is a novel by Theodore Dreiser about a young country girl who moves to the big city where she starts realizing her own American Dream, first as a mistress to men that she perceives as superior, and later becoming a famous actress. It has been called the greatest of all American urban novels.

This Side of Paradise  (1920)

This Side of Paradise

by F Scott Fitzgerald

Its protagonist, Amory Blaine, is an attractive Princeton University student who dabbles in literature. The novel explores the theme of love warped by greed and status seeking. The novel famously helped F. Scott Fitzgerald gain Zelda Sayre's hand in marriage due to its success.

Three Men in a Boat  (1889)

Three Men in a Boat

by Jerome K Jerome

A humorous account of a two-week boating holiday on the Thames from Kingston upon Thames to Oxford and back to Kingston. The book was initially intended to be a serious travel guide, with accounts of local history along the route, but the humorous elements took over to the point where the serious and somewhat sentimental passages seem a distraction to the comic novel.

Three Men on the Bummel  (1900)

Three Men on the Bummel

by Jerome K Jerome

A humorous novel by Jerome K. Jerome. It was published in 1900, eleven years after his most famous work, Three Men in a Boat. The sequel brings back the three companions who figured in Three Men in a Boat, this time on a bicycle tour through the German Black Forest.

The Time Machine  (1895)

The Time Machine

by HG Wells

The work is generally credited with the popularization of the concept of time travel by using a vehicle that allows an operator to travel purposely and selectively forwards or backwards in time. The term time machine, coined by Wells, is now almost universally used to refer to such a vehicle.

Tom Brown's School Days  (1857)

Tom Brown's School Days

by Thomas Hughes

Tom, a student at Rugby School in the time of Thomas Arnold's headmastership, is harassed by the school bully, Flashman, but overcomes his trials. The story is set in the 1830s at Rugby School, a public school for boys. Hughes attended Rugby School from 1834 to 1842.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer  (1876)

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer

by Mark Twain

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain is an 1876 novel about a young boy growing up along the Mississippi River. It is set in the 1840s in the fictional town of St. Petersburg, inspired by Hannibal, Missouri, where Twain lived as a boy.

To The Last Man  (1921)

To The Last Man

by Zane Grey

The story follows an ancient feud between two frontier families that is inflamed when one of the families takes up cattle rustling. The ranchers are led by Jean Isbel and, on the other side, Lee Jorth and his band of cattle rustlers. The story is based on a factual event involving the notorious Hashknife gang of Northern Arizona.

Trail of the Lonesome Pine  (1908)

Trail of the Lonesome Pine

by John Fox Jr

Set in the Appalachian Mountains at the turn of the twentieth century, a feud has been boiling for over thirty years between two influential mountain families: the Tollivers and the Falins. The character Devil Judd Tolliver, in the novel was based on the real life of Devil John Wesley Wright, a United States Marshal for the region in and around Wise County, Virginia, and Letcher County, Kentucky. The outside world and industrialization, however, are beginning to enter the area. Coal mining begins to exert its influence on the area, despite the two families feuds

The Turmoil  (1915)

The Turmoil

by Booth Tarkington

The Turmoil tells the intertwined stories of the Sheridans, whose integrity wanes as their wealth increases, and the Vertrees, who remain noble but impoverished.

Unleavened Bread  (1900)

Unleavened Bread

by Robert Grant

This turn of the century American novel is an ambitious three-stage portrayal of a woman's rise from rural schoolteacher to Senator's wife

The Virginian  (1902)

The Virginian

by Owen Wister

It describes the life of a cowboy on a cattle ranch in Wyoming and was the first true fictional western ever written, aside from short stories and pulp dime novels. The Virginian paved the way for many more westerns by such authors as Zane Grey, Louis L'Amour, and several others.

Walden  (1854)


by Henry David Thoreau

The text is a reflection upon simple living in natural surroundings. The work is part personal declaration of independence, social experiment, voyage of spiritual discovery, satire, and, to some degree, a manual for self-reliance

The Way We Live Now  (1875)

The Way We Live Now

by Anthony Trollope

Augustus Melmotte is a financier with a mysterious past. He is rumored to have Jewish origins, and to be connected to some failed businesses in Vienna. When he moves his business and his family to London, the city's upper crust begins buzzing with rumors about him — and a host of people ultimately find their lives changed because of him.

What Maisie Knew  (1897)

What Maisie Knew

by Henry James

When Beale and Ida Farange are divorced, the court decrees that their only child, the very young Maisie, will shuttle back and forth between them, spending six months of the year with each. The parents are immoral and frivolous, and they use Maisie to intensify their hatred of each other.

Winesburg, Ohio  (1919)

Winesburg, Ohio

by Sherwood Anderson

Winesburg, Ohio begins with a sort of prologue, in which an old writer imagines all the people he has known as grotesques, warped in their pursuits of various truths. A series of stories ensues, each concerned with a single resident of Winesburg.

The Winning of Barbara Worth  (1911)

The Winning of Barbara Worth

by Harold Bell Wright

The Winning of Barbara Worth is a book about the development of Imperial County California and its reclamation from desert to farmland.

Wonderful Wizard of Oz  (1900)

Wonderful Wizard of Oz

by L Frank Baum

Dorothy is a young orphaned girl raised by her Uncle Henry and Aunt Em in the bleak landscape of a Kansas farm. She has a little black dog Toto, who is her sole source of happiness on the dry, gray prairies. One day the farmhouse, with Dorothy and Toto inside, is caught up in a cyclone and deposited in a field in Munchkin Country, the eastern quadrant of the Land of Oz. The falling house kills the evil ruler of the Munchkins, the Wicked Witch of the East.

The Woodlanders  (1887)

The Woodlanders

by Thomas Hardy

The story takes place in a small woodland village called Little Hintock, and concerns the efforts of an honest woodsman, Giles Winterborne, to marry his childhood sweetheart, Grace Melbury.