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Classics for Pleasure

 
 
Author
Michael Dirda.
Publisher Harcourt  
Format hardcover
Product Dimensions 9.25 x 6.25 x 1.1 inches
ISBN 9780151012510
Pages/Publication Date 341/2007
Daedalus Item Code 12173
This item is not available.
Description
This is not your father's (or your mother's) list of classics. In delightful short essays, Pulitzer Prize–winning literary critic Michael Dirda writes as an enthusiastic reader to those who love reading, introducing nearly 90 of the world's most entertaining books, which he notes are classics "not because they are educational, but because people have found them worth reading, generation after generation, century after century." These masterpieces—fantasy and science fiction, horror and adventure, biography and history, poetry and children's literature—are the works that have shaped the Western imagination, from Sappho's yearnings to the Arthurian romances; the dramas of Christopher Marlowe to the ghost stories of M.R. James; from magical tales of E.T.A. Hoffmann to the Regency romances of Georgette Heyer.

"In this casually brilliant collection of great book recommendations, [Michael] Dirda, a Pulitzer Prize-winning critic for the Washington Post Book World, discusses titles ranging from well-known favorites such as Sherlock Holmes and Beowulf to more obscure writers such as Jaroslav Hasek and John Masefield. Dirda is a charming and exceedingly well-read host, erudite without slipping into pretension.... The complete works of Christopher Marlowe are summed up in five eventful pages, and Dirda makes Edward Gibbon's History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire sound so essential over the course of three pages that one forgets it would take the better part of a year to actually read. Dirda's greatest accomplishment, however, is rescuing many formerly illustrious masters from the dustbin of our culture's pitifully short memory: James Agee, G.K. Chesterton and Ernst Junger are just three who benefit from their inclusion in this indispensable volume."—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

 
 
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