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Running Water

Running Water by A. E. W. Mason

Running Water by A. E. W. Mason

Running Water is a tale of romantic adventure. Though much of the story takes place in England, the real setting here is in the high Alps, in the range of Mont Blanc near Chamonix and Courmayeur. Here it is that Captain Hilary Chayne arrives, having spent the prior four years of his army service on the shores of the Red Sea, dreaming all the time of his return to the Alps, to the world of rock, ice, and snow, to mountaineering with all its challenges and joys, and to its comradeship. And here it is too that he meets the young and beautiful Sylvia Thesiger, a girl already in love with the high mountains, and seeking in them an escape, as far as possible, from her unpleasant and domineering mother.
Is it necessary to add that disappointments. problems, misunderstandings, and outright villainies, ensue to complicate the course of true love? After the twists and turns of novel’s English midsection, the setting shifts back to the high Alps, and the final, climactic scene is played out on the heights of the Italian face of the Mont Blanc. This is the Brenva — where thousands of feet of rock and glacier sweep steeply up to reach the highest point in western Europe. It is an Alpine route that today, over century later, even experienced climbers still find a challenge.

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Ralestone Luck

Ralestone Luck by Andre Norton

Ralestone Luck by Andre Norton

Rupert Ralestone is officially the Marquess of Lorne–but with no family money or prestige, the title is worthless. He and his younger brother and sister return to the old family homestead–Pirate’s Haven. Their only hope is to find the family’s talisman, a great sword, and restore it to its proper place.

Recommended for fans J. R. R. Tolkien Hobbit and Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin.

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Five Children and It

Five Children and It by E. Nesbit

Five Children and It by E. Nesbit

This delightful novel begins when a family of five children moves from London to the English countryside. While playing in a gravel pit soon after the move, they discover an ancient and rather grumpy sand-fairy known as the Psammead, who agrees to grant one wish of theirs per day. The children’s wishes send them on adventure after adventure, but rarely turn out as expected.

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At the Back of the North Wind

At the Back of the North Wind by George MacDonald

At the Back of the North Wind by George MacDonald

Diamond the little boy sleeps in the hayloft above the stall of Diamond the horse. The loft is snug but drafty, and after plugging a hole in the wall one night, Diamond is scolded by the beautiful Lady North Wind for closing her “window” into his room. Thus begins their friendship. Spirited away by the North Wind, Diamond embarks on a series of adventures both near to and far from his home. His pure heart and his simple, loving spirit guide him as he journeys to the back of the North Wind and home again.

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Black Beauty

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Black Beauty by Anna Sewell

Black Beauty is Anna Sewell’s first and only novel. The story is told in the “first person” (or first horse) as an autobiographical memoir of a highbred horse named Black Beauty, from his carefree days as a foal on an English farm, to his difficult life pulling cabs in London, to his happy retirement in the country. Along the way, he meets with many hardships and recounts many tales of cruelty and kindness. Each short chapter recounts an incident in Black Beauty’s life containing a lesson or moral typically related to the kindness, sympathy, and understanding treatment of horses. (Summary from wikipedia)

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The Legend of Sleepy Hollow

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving

The Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving

The quiet Dutch community of Sleepy Hollow lies in the Adirondack Mountains on the western shore of the mighty Hudson River in America’s colonial period. The solitude of the woods is breathtaking, and not even a schoolmaster is immune from the eerie miasma which everyone knows permeates the dense forest. Washington Irving’s The Legend Of Sleepy Hollow has become a classic of American literature, and has been retold in many different ways. Here is the original, from Irving’s own hand.

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The Master of the World

The Master of the World by Jules Verne

The Master of the World by Jules Verne

Chief Inspector Strock gets the tough cases. When a volcano suddenly appears to threaten mountain towns of North Carolina amid the non-volcanic Blue Ridge Mountains, Strock is posted to determine the danger. When an automobile race in Wisconsin is interrupted by the unexpected appearance of a vehicle traveling at multiples of the top speed of the entrants, Strock is consulted. When an odd-shaped boat is sighted moving at impossible speeds off the New England coast, Stock and his boss begin to wonder if the incidents are related. And when Strock gets a hand-lettered note warning him to abandon his investigation, on pain of death, he is intrigued rather than deterred.

Set in a period when gasoline engines were in their infancy and automobiles were rare, and when even Chief Inspectors had to engage a carriage and horses to move about, the appearance of a vehicle that can move at astounding speeds on land, on water – and as later revealed, underwater and through the air – marks a technological advance far beyond the reach of nations. It is technology invented by and for the sole benefit of a man who styles himself (with some justification) “The Master of the World.”

This book is a sequel to an earlier Verne novel, “Robur the Conqueror”, but enough detail is given to fully appreciate this story without having first read the other.

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The Odyssey

The Odyssey by Homer

The Odyssey by Homer

The Odyssey is one of the two major ancient Greek epic poems (the other being the Iliad), attributed to the poet Homer. The poem is commonly dated to between 800 and 600 BC. The poem is, in part, a sequel to the Iliad, and concerns the events that befall the Greek hero Odysseus in his long journey back to his native land Ithaca after the fall of Troy.

It takes Odysseus ten years to return to his native land of Ithaca after ten years of war; during his 20-year absence, his son Telemachus and his wife Penelope must deal with a group of unruly suitors who have moved into Odysseus’ home to compete for Penelope’s hand in marriage, since most have assumed that Odysseus had died.
The poem is a fundamental text in the Western canon and continues to be read in both Homeric Greek and translations around the world.

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South! Shackleton’s Last Expedition

South! Shackleton's Last Expedition by Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton

South! Shackleton's Last Expedition by Sir Ernest Henry Shackleton

Shackleton’s most famous expedition was planned to be an attempt to cross Antarctica from the Weddell Sea south of the Atlantic, to the Ross Sea south of the Pacific, by way of the Pole. It set out from London on 1 August 1914, and reached the Weddell Sea on January 10, 1915, where the pack ice closed in on the Endurance. The ship was broken by the ice on 27 October 1915. The 28 crew members managed to flee to Elephant Island, bringing three small boats with them. Shackleton and five other men managed to reach the southern coast of South Georgia in one of the small boats (in a real epic journey). Shackleton managed to rescue all of the stranded crew from Elephant Island without loss in the Chilean’s navy seagoing steam tug Yelcho, on August 30, 1916, in the middle of the Antarctic winter. (Summary from Wikipedia)

As the last section is a short original recording by Ernest Shackleton about the expedition.

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The Lost City

The Lost City by Joseph E. Badger

The Lost City by Joseph E. Badger

Bruno and Waldo Gillespie are orphaned brothers living with the extremely eccentric Professor Phaeton Featherwit. One day they set off in one of the professor’s machines to investigate a tornado at close range and accidentally get sucked into it! They are then transported by the tornado and find themselves in a barren, uncharted wasteland wherein lies a city– a long lost Aztec city! Find out what happens next to the brothers and the professor in this harrowing and exhilarating adventure!

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