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Four Great American Classics

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ISBN-10: 0553213628

ISBN-13: 9780553213621

Edition: 2008

Authors: Herman Melville, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Mark Twain, Stephen Crane

List price: $7.99
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Description:

These four landmark novels of nineteenth-century American literature have gained a permanent place in our culture as great classics. They are not only part of our national heritage, but masterpieces of world literature whose deep and lasting influence is felt to this day. The Scarlet Lettervividly records America's moral and historical roots in Puritan New England and masterfully re-creates a society's preoccupation with sin, guilt, and pride. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finncarries readers along on Huck's unforgettable journey down the Mississippi in America's foremost comic epicthe first great novel in a truly American voice. The Red Badge of Couragere-creates the brutal reality of war…    
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Book details

List price: $7.99
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 12/1/1992
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 896
Size: 4.50" wide x 7.00" long x 1.25" tall
Weight: 0.792
Language: English

Melville was born into a seemingly secure, prosperous world, a descendant of prominent Dutch and English families long established in New York State. That security vanished when first, the family business failed, and then, two years later, in young Melville's thirteenth year, his father died. Without enough money to gain the formal education that professions required, Melville was thrown on his own resources and in 1841 sailed off on a whaling ship bound for the South Seas. His experiences at sea during the next four years were to form in part the basis of his best fiction. Melville's first two books, Typee (1846) and Omoo (1847), were partly romance and partly autobiographical travel books…    

Nathaniel Hawthorne was born on July 4, 1804 in Salem, Mass. When Hawthorne was four years old, his father died. Years later, with financial help from his maternal relatives who recognized his literary talent, Hawthorne was able to enroll in Bowdoin College. Among his classmates were the important literary and political figures Horatio Bridge, Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, and Franklin Pierce. These friends supplied Hawthorne with employment during the early years after graduation while Hawthorne was still establishing himself as a legitimate author. Hawthorne's first novel, Fanshawe, which he self-published in 1928, wasn't quite the success that he had hoped it would be. Not willing to give…    

Samuel Clemens - steamboat pilot, prospector, and newspaper reporter - adopted the pen name "Mark Twain" when he began his career as a literary humorist. The pen name - a river's pilot's term meaning "two fathoms deep" or "safe water" - appears to have freed Clemens to develop the humorous, deadpan manner that became his trademark. During his lifetime, Twain wrote a great deal. Much of his writing was turned out quickly to make money. Even his least significant writing, however, contains flashes of wit and reveals his marvelous command of colloquial American English. His best work is his "Mississippi writing" - Life on the Mississippi (1883) and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884). In…    

Stephen Crane authored novels, short stories, and poetry, but is best known for his realistic war fiction. Crane was a correspondent in the Greek-Turkish War and the Spanish American War, penning numerous articles, war reports and sketches. His most famous work, The Red Badge of Courage (1896), portrays the initial cowardice and later courage of a Union soldier in the Civil War. In addition to six novels, Crane wrote over a hundred short stories including "The Blue Hotel," "The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky," and "The Open Boat." His first book of poetry was The Black Riders (1895), ironic verse in free form. Crane wrote 136 poems. Crane was born November 1, 1871, in Newark, New Jersey. After…