On the Irrawaddy

On the Irrawaddy by G. A. Henty

On the Irrawaddy by G. A. Henty

With the exception of the terrible retreat from Afghanistan, none of England’s many little wars have been so fatal–in proportion to the number of those engaged–as our first expedition to Burma. It was undertaken without any due comprehension of the difficulties to be encountered, from the effects of climate and the deficiency of transport; the power, and still more the obstinacy and arrogance of the court of Ava were altogether underrated; and it was considered that our possession of her ports would assuredly bring the enemy, who had wantonly forced the struggle upon us, to submission. Events, however, proved the completeness of the error. The Burman policy of carrying off every boat on the river, laying waste the whole country, and driving away the inhabitants and the herds, maintained our army as prisoners in Rangoon through the first wet season; and caused the loss of half the white officers and men first sent there. The subsequent campaign was no less fatal and, although large reinforcements had been sent, fifty percent of the whole died; so that less than two thousand fighting men remained in the ranks, when the expedition arrived within a short distance of Ava. Not until the last Burmese army had been scattered did the court of Ava submit to the by no means onerous terms we imposed

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Scaramouche

Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Scaramouche by Rafael Sabatini

Scaramouche is a romantic adventure and tells the story of a young aristocrat during the French Revolution. His successive endeavors as a lawyer, politician, actor, lover, and buffoon lead his enemies to call him “Scaramouche” (also called Scaramuccia, a roguish character in the commedia dell’arte), but he impresses many with his elegant orations and precision swordsmanship. The later film version includes one of the longest, and many believe, best swashbuckling sword-fighting scenes ever filmed.

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The Thirty-Nine Steps

The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan

The Thirty-Nine Steps by John Buchan

Richard Hannay’s boredom is soon relieved when the resourceful engineer is caught up in a web of secret codes, spies, and murder on the eve of WWI.

Recommended for fans of Tom Clancy and the Bourne series by Robert Ludlum.

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Heritage of the Desert

Heritage of the Desert by Zane Grey

Heritage of the Desert by Zane Grey

Jack Hare is a young cowboy who was rescued from sure death by an old settler by the name of August Naab. Hare learns that Naab’s ranch is a dangerous place and is challenged by cattle thieves and a corrupt rancher who is after Naab’s water rights. The greatest danger Hare faces though, is over Mescal, a half-Navajo shepherdess who is already promised in marriage to Naab’s first-born son. Hare must stop the marriage, but can’t kill the son of his benefactor, August Naab…until a gun battle with rustlers brings the two face-to-face over drawn pistols.

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Northwest!

Northwest! by Harold Bindloss

Northwest! by Harold Bindloss

Northwest! takes place in western Canada, primarily western Alberta and British Columbia. The story revolves around Jimmy not being sure whether or not he shot and killed a Northwest Mounted while he and some friends were out hunting one day. Not exactly a bushman, he needs to head northwest to avoid capture by the officials who are out to find him and bring him to trial. At least that’s what he suspects. Survival in the wilderness for one who was raised in British class proves to be a daunting experience, and we learn of the trials he is to be put through while he is on the lam.

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Allan Quatermain

Allan Quatermain by Henry Rider Haggard

Allan Quatermain by Henry Rider Haggard

Allan Quatermain was the quintessential Victorian English gentleman come African big-game hunter. In this book, the second in the series, Quaterman and his two good friends from KSM have tired of their dull and unfulfilling lives in England, and decide to search for the truth of an old tale about the existence of an isolated white kingdom deep in darkest Africa. Their journey and subsequent adventures are sure to satisfy those who enjoy tales of dangerous quests and heroic just-in-time derring-do.

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Cutlass and Cudgel

Cutlass and Cudgel by George Manville Fenn

Cutlass and Cudgel by George Manville Fenn

Based around the crew of cutter HMS White Hawk, this is a tale of smuggling off the coast of Wessex. The midshipman of the cutter is taken hostage by the smugglers and is befriended by a farm-boy, son of one of the smugglers. His friendship is rudely rebuffed, the midshipman eventually escapes and the farm-boy gets his long-held dream of becoming a seaman on an Excise vessel.

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The Adventures of a Dog, and a Good Dog Too

The Adventures of a Dog, and a Good Dog Too by Alfred Elwes

The Adventures of a Dog, and a Good Dog Too by Alfred Elwes

This fictional work is written in 1st person by the dog himself. It’s a cute story of the adventures in the life of a noble dog who is appropriately named, Job. The canine society in which he lives is an interesting parallel to human society.

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Bunyip Land

Bunyip Land by George Manville Fenn

Bunyip Land by George Manville Fenn

Joe Carstairs is a boy on a farm in Australia. His father is a keen naturalist who, some years before had set off for New Guinea in search of specimens, and never been heard of again. Joe is old enough to mount a search expedition, and takes with him a local doctor and an aboriginal worker on his farm. They find themselves joined by a stowaway, Jimmy, whose father is a squatter (farmer) nearby, together with his dog, Gyp.
This team sets off, arrive in New Guinea, hire some more porters, and travel guided by some sixth sense straight to where Mr. Carstairs has been kept a prisoner, along with another Englishman, whose mind has gone, under the stress of his imprisonment.

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She

She by Henry Rider Haggard

She by Henry Rider Haggard

At 5 years old Leo Vincey is left in the care of a Cambridge professor by the name of Horace Holly. His father leaves him a strange casket which he is to open on his 25th Birthday. On opening the Casket Leo and Horace discover the strange history of Leo’s ancestors. Leo and his adoptive father Horace must travel all the way to Africa in order to uncover the solve his family’s strange history.

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