Fighting the Flames

Fighting the Flames by R. M. Ballantyne

Fighting the Flames by R. M. Ballantyne

Frank Willders is a brave young member of the London Fire Brigade – Willie is his mischievous but helpful younger brother. The two of them encounter a cast of unforgettable characters as Frank and his companions perform heroic rescues and fight the never-ending battle against the flames. Meanwhile the mysterious and sinister Gorman is hatching dark plots, lovely Emma Ward has set Willie’s heart on fire, and Mrs. Denman can’t forgive the courageous fireman who carried her out of a burning building in her nightclothes! All these and more come together in a rousing adventure and inspiring story you won’t soon forget.

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The Naval War of 1812

The Naval War of 1812 by Theodore Roosevelt

The Naval War of 1812 by Theodore Roosevelt

Somewhat detailed history of naval engagements between the United States and England during the War of 1812, from a decidedly American perspective. Completed by the author as a young man at age 24. After 120 years, it remains a standard study of the war.

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The Coral Island

The Coral Island by R. M. Ballantyne

The Coral Island by R. M. Ballantyne

Ralph Rover is a traveler at heart, and has always dreamed of shipping out to the South Seas islands. He finally convinces his aging parents to let him go and find his way in the world. But the islands that Ralph finds are not as idyllic as in his dreams. Shipwrecked on a large, uninhabited island, Ralph and his fellow survivors, Jim and Peterkin, discover a world of hostile natives and villainous pirates. Danger, high adventure, and wonders of the sea greet them at every turn. When all seems lost, they find help from an unexpected source.

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The Clock Strikes Thirteen

The Clock Strikes Thirteen by Mildred A. Wirt

The Clock Strikes Thirteen by Mildred A. Wirt

Penny Parker is a teen-aged sleuth and amateur reporter who has an uncanny knack for uncovering and solving unusual, sometimes bizarre mysteries. The only daughter of widower Anthony Parker, publisher of the “Riverview Star,” Penny has been raised to be self-sufficient, outspoken, innovative, and extraordinarily tenacious. Her cheerful, chatty manner belies a shrewd and keenly observant mind. Penny was the creation of Mildred A. Wirt, who was also the author of the original Nancy Drew series (under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene). Wirt became frustrated when she was pushed to “tone down” Nancy Drew and make her less independent and daring. With Penny Parker, Wirt had a freer hand and received full credit. Wirt once said, ” ‘I always thought Penny Parker was a better Nancy Drew than Nancy is.” In “The Clock Strikes Thirteen,” Penny is confronted by two mysteries that ultimately converge. First there is the odd extra chime from the Hubell Clock Tower at midnight and the inexplicable replacement of the dedicated old clock tower caretaker by a shiftless friend of a real estate developer. Then there is a series of terrorizing attacks of local farmers, including a barn burning. The attacks appear to be the work of a band of thugs known as the “Night Riders.” With the help of her friend Louise, Penny works to solve the dual mystery before an another attack and to save an innocent man from jail.

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Ben-Hur; a tale of the Christ

Ben-Hur; a tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace

Ben-Hur; a tale of the Christ by Lew Wallace

Ben-Hur is a story of two very different heroes. Judah Ben-Hur, a prince of Jerusalem, is involved in an accident to the Roman procurator which is taken to be intentional. He is seized and sent to the fleet as a galley-slave, while his family is imprisoned and the family goods confiscated. When Ben-Hur saves the fleet captain from drowning after his ship is sunk in a fight with pirates, that officer adopts him as son and heir. With Roman training, Ben-Hur distinguishes himself in the arena and the palistrae and appears to be on the way to high military command.

With the help of a faithful family retainer and a generous Arab sheik, Ben-Hur is enabled to take part in a widely touted chariot race, where one of the other charioteers is the boyhood friend who connived to punish him for the accident and split his estate. That rival is crippled, financially and bodily, in a no-holds-barred race.

Ben-Hur turns his attention to the prophesied King of the Jews, when through the sheik he meets Balthasar, one of the Three Wise Men, and hears of the child born years ago. Will Ben-Hur be the general who brings victories to the King, and finally liberates Israel from the oppressive Roman yoke? In his quest for the answer, Ben-Hur seeks out the Nazarene, now rumored to be The Messiah.

THAT hero needs no introduction.

Curious about the lack of kingly trappings and ambitions about this man, Ben-Hur begins to suspect that his kingdom is not of this world. And with him, we receive a gut-wrenching eye-witness view of Jesus’ arrest, humiliation, and crucifixion.

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The Secret Pact

The Secret Pact by Mildred A. Wirt

The Secret Pact by Mildred A. Wirt

PENNY PARKER is a teen-aged sleuth and amateur reporter with an uncanny knack for uncovering and solving unusual, sometimes bizarre mysteries. The only daughter of widower Anthony Parker, publisher of the “Riverview Star,” Penny has been raised to be self-sufficient, outspoken, innovative, and extraordinarily tenacious. Her cheerful, chatty manner belies a shrewd and keenly observant mind. Penny was the creation of Mildred A. Wirt, who was also the author of the original Nancy Drew series (under the pseudonym Carolyn Keene). Wirt became frustrated when she was pushed to “tone down” Nancy Drew and make her less independent and daring. With Penny Parker, Wirt had a freer hand and received full credit. Wirt once said, ” ‘I always thought Penny Parker was a better Nancy Drew than Nancy is.” In THE SECRET PACT, Penny sees a man savagely pushed off a bridge into the river one foggy night. The man is rescued, but his stubborn denial of the attack, combined with the grotesque octopus tattoo he bears on his back, alerts Penny to the possibility of a deeper mystery. When her editor father, reporter friends, and even the high school newspaper all reject her story about the incident, she takes matters into her own hands. With her friend Louise’s help, Penny starts her own local paper, operating out of a formerly abandoned newspaper plant. As new clues emerge to the “Octopus tattoo” mystery, she enlists the help of anyone willing, even persuading Mrs. Weems to go “under cover.” Nothing, not even threats and an unexpected tornado, can deter the determined Miss. Parker.

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Kazan

Kazan by James Oliver Curwood

Kazan by James Oliver Curwood

Probably the most widely read of his novels during his lifetime was this engrossing tale of a magnificent animal that is part husky and part wolf. There is a struggle between the two breeds in Kazan’s makeup; he is torn between love for a particular man and woman and the desire to run free with the wolves, especially the one that he has chosen for his mate. In both of these contrasting parts of his life, he meets tremendous challenges that require all his instinct, strength, and spirit to overcome.

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Psmith, Journalist

Psmith, Journalist by P. G. Wodehouse

Psmith, Journalist by P. G. Wodehouse

Psmith takes over editing a paper while the usual editor is away on vacation. He takes on a local slum lord, and divers alarms ensue.

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The Quest of the Sacred Slipper

The Quest of the Sacred Slipper by Sax Rohmer

The Quest of the Sacred Slipper by Sax Rohmer

Cavanagh becomes involved in the adventurous search for a precious relic in the mysterious East.

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The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen

The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen by Rudolf Erich Raspe

The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchausen by Rudolf Erich Raspe

The stories about Münchhausen were first collected and published by an anonymous author. An English version was published in London by Rudolf Erich Raspe, as Baron Munchhausen’s Narrative of his Marvelous Travels and Campaigns in Russia, also called The Surprising Adventures of Baron Munchhausen. It is not clear how much of the story material derives from the Baron himself; however, it is known that the majority of the stories are based on folktales that have been in circulation for many centuries before Münchhausen’s birth. (Summary by Wikipedia)

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