First published in 1938, this volume of stories collected with the encouragement of his longtime editor Pascal Covici serves as a wonderful introduction to the work of Nobel Prize winner John Steinbeck. Set in the beautiful Salinas Valley of California, where simple people farm the land and struggle to find a place for themselves in the world, these stories reflect Steinbeck’s characteristic interests: the tensions between town and country, laborers and owners, past and present. Included here are the O. Henry Prize-winning story “The Murder”; “The Chrysanthemums,” perhaps Steinbeck’s most challenging story, both personally and artistically; “Flight,” “The Snake,” “The White Quail,” and the classic tales of “The Red Pony.” With an introduction and notes by John H. Timmerman.
For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.
“There it lay, the great pearl, perfect as the moon.”
Like his father and grandfather before him, Kino is a poor diver, gathering pearls from the gulf beds that once brought great wealth to the Kings of Spain and now provide Kino, Juana, and their infant son with meager subsistence. Then, on a day like any other, Kino emerges from the sea with... Read more »
Dating to the ninth century BC, Homer’s timeless poem still vividly conveys the horror and heroism of men and gods wrestling with towering emotions and battling amidst devastation and destruction, as it moves inexorably to the wrenching, tragic conclusion of the Trojan War. Renowned classicist Bernard Knox observes in his superb Introduction... Read more »
Celebrating its 75th anniversary, John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men remains one of America's most widely read and beloved novels. Here is Steinbeck’s dramatic adaptation of his novel-as-play, which received the New York Drama Critics’ Circle Award for Best Play in 1937-1938 and has featured a number of actors who have played the iconic roles of... Read more »
The bestselling novel that became an Oscar-winning film starring Elizabeth Taylor about New York's speakeasy generation
A masterpiece of American fiction and a bestseller upon its publication in 1935, BUtterfield 8 lays bare with brash honesty the unspoken and often shocking truths that lurked beneath the surface of a society still reeling from... Read more »
Robert Pinsky's new verse translation of the Inferno makes it clear to the contemporary listener, as no other in English has done, why Dante is universally considered a poet of great power, intensity, and strength. This critically acclaimed translation was awarded the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for Poetry and the Harold Morton Landon... Read more »
From the award-winning translator of The Iliad and The Odyssey comes a brilliant new translation of Virgil's great epic
Fleeing the ashes of Troy, Aeneas, Achilles’ mighty foe in the Iliad, begins an incredible journey to fulfill his destiny as the founder of Rome. His voyage will take him through stormy seas, entangle him in a tragic love... Read more »
A 50th anniversary hardcover edition of Kerouac’s classic novel that defined a generation
Few novels have had as profound an impact on American culture as On the Road. Pulsating with the rhythms of 1950s underground America, jazz, sex, illicit drugs, and the mystery and promise of the open road, Kerouac’s classic novel of freedom and longing... Read more »
A magnificent volume of short novels and an essential World War II report from one of America's great twentieth-century writers
A Penguin Classic
On the heels of the enormous success of his masterwork The Grapes of Wrath and at the height of the American war effort John Steinbeck, one of the most prolific and influential literary figures of his... Read more »
This timeless classic is now an easy-to-read chapter book!
The four March sisters--Meg, Amy, Beth, and feisty Jo--share the joys and sorrows of growing up while their father is away at war. The family is poor in worldly goods, but rich in love and character. Read more »
A riveting novel of labor strife and apocalyptic violence that maps the frontier where the masses become a mobAt once a relentlessly fast-paced, admirably observed novel of social unrest and the story of a young man's struggle for identity, In Dubious Battle is set in the California apple country, where a strike by migrant workers against... Read more »
John Steinbeck's masterpiece celebrates the spirit and courage of adolescence. Steinbeck draws on his memories of childhood in these stories about a boy who embodies both the rebellious spirit and the contradictory desire for acceptance of early adolescence. Unlike most coming-of-age stories, the cycle does not end with a hero "matured" by... Read more »
The final novel of one of America’s most beloved writers—a tale of degeneration, corruption, and spiritual crisis
A Penguin Classic
In awarding John Steinbeck the 1962 Nobel Prize in Literature, the Nobel committee stated that with The Winter of Our Discontent, he had “resumed his position as an independent expounder of the truth, with an... Read more »
Rilke's powerfully touching letters to an aspiring young poet, now available in a beautiful hardcover Penguin edition
At the start of the twentieth century, Rainer Maria Rilke wrote a series of letters to a young officer cadet, advising him on writing, love, sex, suffering, and the nature of advice itself. These profound and lyrical letters have... Read more »
From the mid-1650s through the 1660s, Henry Morgan, a pirate and outlaw of legendary viciousness, ruled the Spanish Main. He ravaged the coasts of Cuba and America, striking terror wherever he went. Morgan was obsessive. He had two driving ambitions: to possess the beautiful woman called La Santa Roja and to conquer Panama, the “cup of gold.”... Read more »
The Odyssey is literature's grandest evocation of every man's journey through life. In the myths and legends that are retold here, the energy and poetry of Homer's original is captured in a bold, contemporary idiom, giving us an edition of The Odyssey that is a joy to listen to, worth savoring treasuring for its sheer lyrical mastery. This... Read more »
Go back to Whitehall and look for more spies on your drawing boards.
George Smiley is no one's idea of a spy—which is perhaps why he's such a natural. But Smiley apparently made a mistake. After a routine security interview, he concluded that the affable Samuel Fennan had nothing to hide. Why, then, did the man from the Foreign Office shoot... Read more »
Steinbeck and Capa’s account of their journey through Cold War Russia is a classic piece of reportage and travel writing.
Just after the Iron Curtain fell on Eastern Europe, Pulitzer Prize-winning author John Steinbeck and acclaimed war photographer Robert Capa ventured into the Soviet Union to report for the New York Herald Tribune. This rare... Read more »
The legendary 1951 scroll draft of On the Road, published as Kerouac originally composed it
IN THREE WEEKS in April of 1951, Jack Kerouac wrote his first full draft of On the Road—typed as a single-spaced paragraph on eight long sheets of tracing paper, which he later taped together to form a 120-foot scroll. A major literary event when it was... Read more »
The novelist who wrote THE GRAPES OF WRATH and the director who produced CRISIS AND LIGHTS OUT in Europe combined their superb talents to tell the story of the coming of modern medicine to the natives of Mexico. There have been several notable examples of this pen-camera method of narration, but THE FORGOTTEN VILLAGE is unique among them in that... Read more »
The epic battle between man and monster reaches its greatest pitch in the famous story of Frankenstein. In trying to create life, the young student Victor Frankenstein unleashes forces beyond his control, setting into motion a long and tragic chain of events that brings Victor himself to the very brink. How he tries to destroy his creation, as... Read more »
Occupied by enemy troops, a small, peaceable town comes face-to-face with evil imposed from the outside--and betrayal born within the close-knit community. Originally published at the zenith of Nazi Germanyâ's power, this masterful fable uncovers profound, often unsettling truths about war--and about human nature. Steinbeck's self-described... Read more »
In Nobel Prize winner John Steinbeck’s beautifully rendered depictions of small yet fateful moments that transform ordinary lives, these twelve early stories introduce both the subject and style of artistic expression that recur in the most important works of his career. Each of these self-contained stories is linked to the others by the... Read more »
Steinbeck's tough yet charming portrait of people on the margins of society, dependent on one another for both physical and emotional survivalPublished in 1945, Cannery Row focuses on the acceptance of life as it is: both the exuberance of community and the loneliness of the individual. Drawing on his memories of the real inhabitants of... Read more »
Moby-Dick is one of the great epics in all of literature. Captain Ahab's hunt for the white whale drives the narrative at a relentless pace, while Ishmael's meditations on whales and whaling, on the sublime indifference of nature, and on the grimy physical details of the extraction of oil provide a reflective counterpoint to the headlong... Read more »
John le Carré’s third novel—A #1 New York Times bestseller for 34 weeks—and the book that launched his career worldwide
In the shadow of the newly erected Berlin Wall, Alec Leamas watches as his last agent is shot dead by East German sentries. For Leamas, the head of Berlin Station, the Cold War is over. As he faces the prospect of retirement or... Read more »
A fiftieth-anniversary edition of Ken Kesey's searing American classic.
Boisterous, ribald, and ultimately shattering, Ken Kesey's One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest has left an indelible mark on the literature of our time. Turning conventional notions of sanity and insanity on their heads, the novel tells the unforgettable story of a mental... Read more »
The last of John Steinbeck’s play-novelettes, Burning Bright was the author’s final attempt after 1937’s Of Mice and Men and 1942’s The Moon is Down to create what he saw as a new, experimental literary form. Four scenes, four people: the husband who yearns for a son, ignorant of his own sterility; the wife who commits adultery to fulfill her... Read more »
After eighteen years as a political prisoner in the Bastille the aging Dr Manette is finally released and reunited with his daughter in England. There two very different men, Charles Darnay, an exiled French aristocrat, and Sydney Carton, a disreputable but brilliant English lawyer, become enmeshed through their love for Lucie Manette. From the... Read more »
Over the course of his seemingly irreproachable life, Magnus Pym has been all things to all people: a devoted family man, a trusted colleague, a loyal friend—and the perfect spy. But in the wake of his estranged father’s death, Magnus vanishes, and the British Secret Service is up in arms. Is it grief, or is the reason for his disappearance more... Read more »
An unforgettable spiritual journey through the Himalayas...
IN 1973, Peter Matthiessen and field biologist George Schaller traveled high into the remote mountains of Nepal to study the Himalayan blue sheep and possibly glimpse the rare and beautiful snow leopard. Matthiessen, a student of Zen Buddhism, was also on a spiritual quest to find the... Read more »
Raskolnikov, a destitute and desperate former student, wanders through the slums of St Petersburg and commits a random murder without remorse or regret. He imagines himself to be a great man, a Napoleon: acting for a higher purpose beyond conventional moral law. But as he embarks on a dangerous game of cat and mouse with a suspicious police... Read more »
An intimate journey across America, as told by one of its most beloved writers
To hear the speech of the real America, to smell the grass and the trees, to see the colors and the light—these were John Steinbeck's goals as he set out, at the age of fifty-eight, to rediscover the country he had been writing about for so many years.
Featuring George Smiley, The Honourable Schoolboy is the second installment in the renowned Karla Trilogy, the follow-up to the New York Times bestselling Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy, which was the inspiration for the Oscar-nominated film starring Gary Oldman as George Smiley, Colin Firth and Tom Hardy.
In his first novel to follow the publication of his enormous success, The Grapes of Wrath, Steinbeck’s vision comes wonderfully to life in this imaginative and unsentimental chronicle of a bus traveling California’s back roads, transporting the lost and the lonely, the good and the greedy, the stupid and the scheming, the beautiful and the... Read more »
Winner of the 1973 National Book Award, Gravity's Rainbow is a postmodern epic, a work as exhaustively significant to the second half of the twentieth century as Joyce's Ulysses was to the first. Its sprawling, encyclopedic narrative and penetrating analysis of the impact of technology on society make it an intellectual tour de force.
You want to catch the lion, first you tether the goat.
On holiday in Mykonos, Charlie wants only sunny days and a brief escape from England’s bourgeois dreariness. Then a handsome stranger lures the aspiring actress away from her pals—but his intentions are far from romantic. Joseph is an Israeli intelligence officer, and Charlie has been wooed... Read more »
The National Book Award–winning novel by the writer whom Fran Lebowitz called “the real F. Scott Fitzgerald”
Joe Chapin led a storybook life. A successful small-town lawyer with a beautiful wife, two over-achieving children, and aspirations to be president, he seemed to have it all. But as his daughter looks back on his life, a different man... Read more »
This exciting day-by-day account of Steinbeck's trip to the Gulf of California with biologist Ed Ricketts, drawn from the longer Sea of Cortez, is a wonderful combination of science, philosophy, and high-spirited adventure. Read more »
A portrait in her own words of the female Lawrence of Arabia, the subject of the PBS documentary Letters from Baghdad, voiced by Tilda Swinton, and the major motion picture Queen of the Desert, starring Nicole Kidman, James Franco, Damian Lewis, and Robert Pattinson and directed by Werner Herzog
Gertrude Bell was leaning in 100 years before... Read more »
In his only work of political satire, The Short Reign of Pippin IV, John Steinbeck turns the French Revolution upside down as amateur astronomer Pippin Héristal is drafted to rule the unruly French. Steinbeck creates around the infamous Pippin the most hilarious royal court ever: Pippin’s wife, Queen Marie, who “might have taken her place at the... Read more »