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What Dreams May Come: A Romance

by Gertrude Atherton

Originally published in the late nineteenth century, this novel was initially overlooked by critics, but it is now regarded as an early classic in the genre of fantasy fiction. Struck by a dizzying thunderbolt...


by Gertrude Atherton

Many of Gertrude Atherton's novels are set in her native state of California and feature gutsy, headstrong heroines. In Rezanov, a high-ranking Russian official travels to California and is blown over by his...

The Sisters-in-Law: A Novel of Our Time

by Gertrude Atherton

Fans of Gertrude Atherton's California series of novels and stories will want to add The Sisters-in-Law to their must-read list. This tale focuses on a young woman named Alexina and her amusing exploits in turn-of-the-century...

Words for the Wise

by T. S. Arthur

American author Timothy Shaw Arthur gained widespread acclaim in the nineteenth century by penning a series of stories with strong moral themes. The collection Words for the Wise brings together a number of...

The Doomswoman: An Historical Romance of Old California

by Gertrude Atherton

This refreshingly innovative take on the age-old theme of star-crossed lovers is set during the period when Mexico and the U.S. were warring over the control of California. The lovely Doña Chonita is loyal...

The Valiant Runaways

by Gertrude Atherton

Though originally intended for younger audiences, The Valiant Runaways is a rip-roaring action-adventure tale that will ensnare the interest of readers of all ages. Roldan Castanada is a young man who has strong...

Senator North

by Gertrude Atherton

This exhaustively researched historical novel presents a rich, three-dimensional representation of the late nineteenth-century politics in the United States. The focal point of the novel is Senator North, a...

A Daughter of the Vine: The Randolphs of Redwood

by Gertrude Atherton

In this emotionally engaging and richly detailed multi-generational epic, author Gertrude Atherton uses her own family history as a lens through which to trace the evolution of the fictional Randolph family,...

Domestic Peace

by Honore de Balzac, Ellen Marriage & Clara Bell

From the "Scenes of Private Life" section of Honore de Balzac's great masterwork The Human Comedy, this novella is set at a grand ball at the height of the Napoleonic era. The usual suspects from the city's...

A Drama on the Seashore

by Honore de Balzac & Katharine Prescott Wormeley

This short section of Honore de Balzac's vast story cycle The Human Comedy unfolds against the beautiful backdrop of the western coast of France. A couple on vacation have a chance encounter with a fisherman....

The Elixir of Life

by Honore de Balzac, Clara Bell & James Waring

Some of the short stories in the Philosophical Studies section of Honore de Balzac's The Human Comedy have hints of the mystical and supernatural. These elements are very pronounced in the spine-chilling tale...

A Distinguished Provincial at Paris

by Honore de Balzac & Ellen Marriage

The novel A Distinguished Provincial at Paris is the second volume of Honore de Balzac's Lost Illusions trilogy. In it, Balzac masterfully revisits one of his most commonly called-upon themes: the harsh realization...

Eve and David

by Honore de Balzac & Ellen Marriage

The novel Eve and David is the third entry in Honore de Balzac's Lost Illusions trilogy, which in turn is part of his larger novel cycle, The Human Comedy. The story focuses on a pair of earnest, good-hearted...

The Exiles

by Honore de Balzac, Clara Bell & James Waring

Though Honore de Balzac is now lauded as a master of the literary genre of social realism, a sizable number of his stories and novels also contain supernatural and mystical elements. The story "The Exiles" is...

Facino Cane

by Honore de Balzac & Clara Bell

The short story "Facino Cane" has been categorized as both a "Philosophical Study" and a "Scene of Paris Life" in various editions of French writer Honore de Balzac's sprawling series The Human Comedy. The narrator...

An Episode Under the Terror

by Honore de Balzac & Clara Bell

Set in the aftermath of the French Revolution, this short story from the Scenes of Political Life section of Honore de Balzac's The Human Comedy immerses readers in the terrifying tumult of the period. Brimming...

The Firm of Nucingen

by Honore de Balzac & James Waring

One of the key themes that is woven throughout Balzac's masterpiece, The Human Comedy, relates to the dangers of materialism and greed. In this novella, the narrator overhears some fellow diners discussing a...


by Honore de Balzac

The novella Gambara is part of the Philosophical Studies section of Honore de Balzac's The Human Comedy. It follows a tumultuous relationship between Italian nobleman Andrea Marcosini and the beautiful, young...


by Honore de Balzac & Ellen Marriage

An extract from Honore de Balzac's sweeping novel cycle The Human Comedy, Gobseck is a novella that recounts the social ascendancy of young Anastasie de Restaud. Born into a wealthy family, Anastasie marries...


by Honore de Balzac & Katharine Prescott Wormeley

A heartbroken cavalry officer, Auguste de Maulincour, is strolling through a rather seedy section of Paris when he happens to spot the object of his unrequited love, a married young woman named Clemence. Even...