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Charlie Mackesy – The Boy, The Mole, The Fox and The Horse

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Friedrich Nietzsche – Beyond Good and Evil

Beyond Good and Evil confirmed Nietzsche's position as the towering European philosopher of his age. The work dramatically rejects traditional Western thought with its notions of truth and God, good and evil. Nietzsche seeks to demonstrate that the Christian world is steeped in a false piety and infected with a 'slave morality'. With wit and energy, he turns from this critique to a philosophy that celebrates the present and demands that the individual impose their own 'will to power' upon the world. Translated by R. J. HOLLINGDALE With an Introduction by MICHAEL TANNER

Mary Oliver – A Thousand Mornings

I go down to the shore in the morning and depending on the hour the waves are rolling in or moving out, and I say, oh, I am miserable, what shall- what should I do? And the sea says in its lovely voice: Excuse me, I have work to do. Whether studying the leaves of a tree or mourning her treasured dog Percy, Mary Oliver is beautifully open to the teachings contained within the smallest of moments. In A Thousand Mornings she explores, with startling clarity, humour and kindness, the mysteries of our daily experience.

Thomas Hardy Boxed Set – Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Far from the Madding Crowd, The Mayor of Casterbridge, Jude

Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset in 1840 and became an apprentice architect at the age of sixteen. He spent his twenties in London, where he wrote his first poems. In 1867 Hardy returned to his native Dorset, whose rugged landscape was a great source of inspiration for his writing. Between 1871 and 1897 he wrote fourteen novels, including Tess of the D'Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure. This final work was received savagely; thereafter Hardy turned away from novels and spent the last thirty year of his life focusing on poetry. He died in 1928.

Friedrich Nietzsche – Thus Spoke Zarathustra

Nietzsche was one of the most revolutionary thinkers in Western philosophy, and Thus Spoke Zarathustra remains his most influential work. It describes how the ancient Persian prophet Zarathustra descends from his solitude in the mountains to tell the world that God is dead and that the Superman, the human embodiment of divinity, is his successor. With blazing intensity, Nietzsche argues that the meaning of existence is not to be found in religious pieties or meek submission, but in an all-powerful life force: passionate, chaotic and free. Translated with an introduction by R. J. HOLLINGDALE

Charlotte Brontë – Jane Eyre

Charlotte Brontë's first published novel, Jane Eyre was immediately recognised as a work of genius when it appeared in 1847. Orphaned into the household of her Aunt Reed at Gateshead, subject to the cruel regime at Lowood charity school, Jane Eyre nonetheless emerges unbroken in spirit and integrity. How she takes up the post of governess at Thornfield Hall, meets and loves Mr Rochester and discovers the impediment to their lawful marriage are elements in a story that transcends melodrama to portray a woman's passionate search for a wider and richer life than that traditionally accorded to her sex in Victorian society.

Helen Keller – The Story of My Life

An American classic rediscovered by each generation, The Story of My Life is Helen Keller's account of her triumph over deafness and blindness. Popularized by the stage play and movie The Miracle Worker, Keller's story has become a symbol of hope for people all over the world. This book-published when Keller was only twenty-two-portrays the wild child who is locked in the dark and silent prison of her own body. With an extraordinary immediacy, Keller reveals her frustrations and rage, and takes the reader on the unforgettable journey of her education and breakthroughs into the world of communication. From the moment Keller recognizes the word "water" when her teacher finger-spells the letters, we share her triumph as "that living word awakened my soul, gave it light, hope, joy, set it free!" An unparalleled chronicle of courage, The Story of My Life remains startlingly fresh and vital more than a century after its first publication, a timeless testament to an indomitable will.

Vincent van Gogh – A Life in Letters

Vincent van Gogh's letters have long been prized as some of the most valuable documents in the world of art. Not only do they throw light on Van Gogh's own complex and intriguing character, they enlighten the whole creative process as seen through his eyes. Here we can observe Van Gogh's thoughts and opinions at first hand, as well as his close ties with his brother Theo, his sometimes troubled relationships with friends and fellow artists, his personal doubts and fears, and above all his overriding passion for his art. This is not only an immense treasure trove of biographical and art-historical information, it provides a lasting pleasure as a personal written testimony to a life consecrated to art. Vincent van Gogh: A Life in Letters belongs on the shelves of every reader in search of self-revelatory documents of one of the greatest creative minds.

Oriana Mountain Dreamer – The Invitation

Cult bestseller The Invitation is more than just a poem. It is a profound invitation to a life that is more fulfilling and passionate, with greater integrity. This book is a word-of-mouth sensation, whose truths have resonated with people all over the world, and is now reissued with a beautiful new cover design. When workshop leader and author Oriah Mountain Dreamer wrote her heartfelt ‘Invitation’, she did not expect the small prose poem to reach the level of popularity that it has. It has spread far and wide by word of mouth and the internet and has been read aloud at weddings, funerals and spiritual gatherings. In this inspirational book, the author explains and expands upon the ideas contained in her poem, creating a guidebook for living a life full of integrity, commitment and passion and inviting readers on a journey to find and accept their true selves. In this accessible book, Oriah Mountain Dreamer provides a line-by-line exploration of the poem, showing us how we can meet the challenge that it gives us.

Mary Oliver – New and Selected Poems, Volume One: 1

Mary Oliver's perceptive, brilliantly crafted poems about the natural landscape and the fundamental questions of life and death have won high praise from critics and readers alike. Do you love this world? she interrupts a poem about peonies to ask the reader. Do you cherish your humble and silky life? She makes us see the extraordinary in our everyday lives, how something as common as light can be an invitation/to happiness, /and that happiness, /when it's done right, /is a kind of holiness, /palpable and redemptive. She illuminates how a near miss with an alligator can be the catalyst for seeing the world as if for the second time/the way it really is. Oliver's passionate demonstrations of delight are powerful reminders of the bond between every individual, all living things, and the natural world.

Rainer Maria Rilke – Letters to a Young Poet

Born in 1875, the great German lyric poet Rainer Maria Rilke published his first collection of poems in 1898 and went on to become renowned for his delicate depiction of the workings of the human heart. Drawn by some sympathetic note in his poems, young people often wrote to Rilke with their problems and hopes. From 1903 to 1908 Rilke wrote a series of remarkable responses to a young, would-be poet on poetry and on surviving as a sensitive observer in a harsh world. Those letters, still a fresh source of inspiration and insight, are accompanied here by a chronicle of Rilke's life that shows what he was experiencing in his own relationship to life and work when he wrote them.
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