08/26/2013

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J. M. Barrie's Peter Pan - classic fiction selection How to captivate and audience by flying around in leotards. About this book: Peter Pan; or, the Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up or Peter and Wendy is J. M. Barrie's most famous work, in the form of a 1904 play and a 1911 novel, respectively. Both versions tell the story of Peter Pan, a mischievous little boy who can fly, and his adventures on the island of Neverland with Wendy Darling and her brothers, the fairy Tinker Bell, the Lost Boys, the Indian princess Tiger Lily, and the pirate Captain Hook. The play and novel were inspired by Barrie's friendship with the Llewelyn Davies family. Barrie continued to revise the play for years after its debut; the novel reflects one version of the story. The novel was first published in 1911 by Hodder & Stoughton in the United Kingdom and Charles Scribner's Sons in the United States. The original book contains a frontispiece and 11 half-tone plates by artist F. D. Bedford (whose illustrations are still in copyright in the EU). The novel was first abridged by May Byron in 1915, with Barrie's permission, and published under the title Peter Pan and Wendy, the first time this form was used. This version was later illustrated by Mabel Lucie Attwell in 1921. The novel is now usually published under that title or simply Peter Pan. The script of the play, which Barrie had continued to revise since its first performance, was published in 1928. Peter makes night-time calls on the Darlings' house in Bloomsbury,[5] listening in on...
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Herman Melville's Moby Dick The classic fiction which almost took down the author, much as his character Captain Ahab. About this book: Moby-Dick; or, The Whale, is a novel by Herman Melville first published in 1851. It is considered to be one of the Great American Novels. The story tells the adventures of wandering sailor Ishmael, and his voyage on the whaleship Pequod, commanded by Captain Ahab. Ishmael soon learns that Ahab has one purpose on this voyage: to seek out Moby Dick, a ferocious, enigmatic white sperm whale. In a previous encounter, the whale destroyed Ahab's boat and bit off his leg, which now drives Ahab to take revenge. Moby-Dick begins with the line "Call me Ishmael." According to the American Book Review's rating in 2011, this is one of the most recognizable opening lines in Western literature. The narrator, Ishmael, is an observant young man setting out from Manhattan who has experience in the merchant marine but has recently decided his next voyage will be on a whaling ship. On a cold, gloomy night in December, he arrives at the Spouter-Inn in New Bedford, Massachusetts, and agrees to share a bed with a then-absent stranger. When his bunk mate, a heavily tattooed Polynesian harpooner named Queequeg, returns very late and discovers Ishmael beneath his covers, both men are alarmed, but the two quickly become close friends and decide to sail together from Nantucket, Massachusetts, on a whaling voyage. In Nantucket, the pair signs on with the Pequod, a whaling ship that is soon to leave port. The ship’s...