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Action/Adventure Books

The Purple Land

The Purple Land by W. H. Hudson

The Purple Land by W. H. Hudson

In W.H. Hudson’s first novel, an Englishman wandering on horseback across the pampas finds adventure and romance in Uruguay. The full title became: “The Purple Land: Being the Narrative of One Richard Lamb’s Adventures in The Banda Oriental, in South America, as Told By Himself”. In the preface to “The Sun Also Rises”, President Teddy Roosevelt said that everyone should read “The Purple Land.”

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The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night – Volume 9

The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night - Volume 9

The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night – Volume 9

This is a collection of stories collected over thousands of years by various authors, translators and scholars. The are an amalgam of mythology and folk tales from the Indian sub-continent, Persia, and Arabia. No original manuscript has ever been found for the collection, but several versions date the collection’s genesis to somewhere between AD 800-900. The stories are wound together under the device of a long series of cliff-hangers told by Shahrazad to her husband Shahryar, to prevent him from executing her. Many tales that have become independently famous come from the Book, among them Ali Baba and the Forty Thieves, and the voyages of Sinbad the Sailor. This collection comes from the ninth of sixteen volumes translated by Burton.

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The Trail of the Hawk

The Trail of the Hawk by Sinclair Lewis

The Trail of the Hawk by Sinclair Lewis

Trail of the Hawk, is Sinclair Lewis’ second novel published under his own name. It was not at the time of release a smashing success as his later works, Babbitt, Elmer Gantry, and others, but his style and immense talent are certainly evident.

We travel with The Hawk, or Carl Ericson, son of Norwegian immigrants, born at the end of the 19th century through the first three adventurous periods of the young man’s life. We see him as an adventurous boy, running away with Gertie Cowels, the girl that lives in the big house in the better part of town, only to be rescued by Bone Stillman, a backwoods philosopher and influence on Carl.

We travel with him as he leaves his childhood, Gertie and Joralemon behind, for a short attempt at higher education, then to pursue the hobo life, a Bowery bartender, an engineer in Panama and an aviator. It is during the aviator phase that he becomes Hawk Ericson barnstorming his way across America, an exciting but dangerous lifestyle. Leaving aviation after too many close calls, and the loss of his best friend, he becomes an automobile man, and moves into phase three.

It is in phase three, love adventure, that we find The Hawk in New York, mingling with polite society quite by accident. He is smitten by Ruth Winslow, while riding on a streetcar after a fight with Gertie, and follows Ruth to a party which he crashes.

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Heart of the West

Heart of the West by O. Henry

Heart of the West by O. Henry

A collection of short stories by the legendary O. Henry.

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The White Feather

The White Feather by P. G. Wodehouse

The White Feather by P. G. Wodehouse

Sheen, a member of Seymour’s House at Wrykyn School, flees from an unexpected assault by town boys. His colleagues wade into the fight with relish, acquiring bruises and sore heads, but in the fracas, Sheen is missed, and the story makes the rounds of Wrykyn that when blows were traded, Sheen “funked it.”

Honor in such institutions depends on reliably standing with your House. As punishment for his defection, Sheen is “cut” – treated as if he did not exist.

In a later expedition into town, Sheen is set upon by the town bullies and finds that when retreat is no option, he can take their blows and fight against odds. Seeing his pluck, bystander Joe Bevan, an ex-champion boxer, offers to tutor Sheen.

Surprisingly, Sheen finds he has a knack for boxing. And with that discovery comes a plan: he will fight for his House in the Lightweight division and win back his honor.

But the best-laid plans… may go awry!

Wodehouse, a humorist, picks up the sober topic of cowardice but treats it with his customary panache.

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The Cruise of the Esmeralda

The Cruise of the Esmeralda by Harry Collingwood

The Cruise of the Esmeralda by Harry Collingwood

After his father died, Captain Saint Leger and his family are left destitute. However, the Saint Legers have a family secret: an ancestor is said to have buried a vast fortune in gold and jewels somewhere in the Eastern Seas. The catch: all directions are encrypted. Nevertheless, Captain Saint Leger decides to take a chance and sails east. A journey full of adventure begins, including pirates, storms and mutiny.

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Red Nails

Red Nails by Robert E. Howard

Red Nails by Robert E. Howard

Conan the Cimmerian pursues the beautiful and deadly pirate Valeria after she kills a Stygian only to find himself cornered by a dragon. Apparently this dragon doesn’t know who he’s messing with. The pair then encounters the city of Xuchotl with its warring factions and ancient secrets. Swordplay and sorcery ensue. – Red Nails is Howard’s final Conan story and was published in the July, August, September and October 1936 issues of Weird Tales magazine.

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The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard

The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

The hero, Etienne Gerard, is a Hussar in the French Army during the Napoleonic Wars. Gerard’s most notable attribute is his vanity – he is utterly convinced that he is the bravest soldier, greatest swordsman, accomplished horseman and gallant lover in all France. Gerard is not entirely wrong since he displays notable bravery on many occasions, but his self-satisfaction undercuts this quite often. Obsessed with honor and glory, he is always ready with a stirring speech or a gallant remark to a lady.

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An Amiable Charlatan

An Amiable Charlatan by E. Phillips Oppenheim

An Amiable Charlatan by E. Phillips Oppenheim

An Englishman is enjoying his dinner at Stephano’s, at which he is a regular diner. A man enters quickly, sits at his table, starts eating his food, and hands him a packet underneath the table! So begins Paul Walmsley’s acquaintance – and adventures – with American adventurer Joseph H. Parker and his lovely daughter, Eve.

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The Outlaw of Torn

The Outlaw of Torn by Edgar Rice Burroughs

The Outlaw of Torn by Edgar Rice Burroughs

The Outlaw of Torn is set in 13th century England and concerns the fictitious outlaw Norman of Torn, who purportedly harried the country during the power struggle between King Henry III and Simon de Montfort. Norman is the supposed son of the Frenchman de Vac, once the king’s fencing master, who has a grudge against his former employer and raises the boy to be a simple, brutal killing machine with a hatred of all things English. His intentions are partially subverted by a priest who befriends Norman and teaches him his letters and chivalry towards women. (excerpt from Wikipedia)

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