Parnassus on Wheels by Christopher Morley (1917)

Greater minds have mused that books are like windows into foreign worlds. A good book can therefore make you love anything from bicycling to sailing. Fewer books renew your love of literature itself. Parnassus on Wheels describes the culture and romance of reading better than many a teacher.

Helen McGill is tired of doing housework for her ungracious author of a brother. When she gets the chance to have a literary adventure of her own, she doesn’t miss the opportunity. The professor sells Parnassus on Wheels, a makeshift bookshop on a wagon, to Ms. McGill sending her off on a fun literary adventure. Gather a crowd and sell some books from Parnassus on Wheels.

 

free audiobook download: https://librivox.org/parnassus-on-wheels-by-christopher-morley

free ebook download: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/5311

Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life by Herman Melville (1846)

This book seems unusual for the time when it was written. Inside the author writes scathingly of missionaries destructive influence on the Polynesian islands. Tales of woe and toil are contrasted with the happy carefree life the natives of Nuku Hiva regularly enjoy. While I don’t believe in the existence of tropical paradise, a book describing the negative results of western influence was refreshing. The story alternates between perilous action and soothing scenery resulting in a pleasant island vacation. Don’t believe everything written in these pages. Typee is confirmed to be a half-truthful collection of autobiographical adventure and fictional ramblings.

Two unhappy sailors are marooned upon an unending voyage. The captain knowing that supplies are running low decides to land at Nuku Hiva in the Marquesas Islands. These two melancholy seamen seize there chance to escape from the tiresome and monotonous whaling journey. On a rainy day, they sneak away from their comrades and scale the mountains. Over these mountains, the two men find adventure and the cannibal tribe of Typee. Jump into the wilderness by reading Typee: A Peep at Polynesian Life.

 

free audiobook download: https://librivox.org/typee-by-herman-melville/

free ebook download: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/1900

The Camera Fiend by E.W. Hornung (1911)

We’ve all seen things out of the corners of our eyes that required a double take. Is a person standing in the moonlit hall? No, that’s just the coat rack with my leather jacket hanging at a confusing angle. Is that leaf floating in mid air? No, only a leaf caught in a spider web. This book is a treat that first looks average and tastes completely different once you bite into it. I’m reminded of painters who aggressively slosh paint on canvas in a haphazard manner creating what appears to be abstract art. After a few minutes, the artist flips the canvas around to reveal some famous face. A cute little trick that makes the whole story worthwhile.

You follow the sickly Pocket Upton on a regular jaunt down to London to see the asthma specialist. After the doctor lectures him against him smoking, he is given two bottles of medicine in exchange for the special asthma cigarettes Pocket uses daily. Pocket walks from the doctor’s office knowing that he has the choice of two places to stay the night. Each rejects him meanly leaving a 16 year old asthmatic boy alone without a bed in the heart of London. Follow Pocket as he bumbles in and out of trouble in The Camera Fiend.

 

free ebook download: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/30096

free audiobook download: https://librivox.org/the-camera-fiend-by-e-w-hornung/

An Amiable Charlatan by E. Phillips Oppenheim(1916)

This was a treat. Yes, yes . . . a real treat. *sigh* I don’t want to spoil it for you. Suffice to say that it is a rollicking good time following around Mr. Parker and his daughter. Sweet cons and crimes galore. Become a card carrying adventurer today by reading An Amiable Charlatan. 

 

free ebook download: http://manybooks.net/titles/oppenheietext068achr10.html

free audiobook download: https://librivox.org/an-amiable-charlatan-by-e-phillips-oppenheim/

The Secret Adversary by Agatha Christie (1922)

I feel kind of bad writing about this book. Not that the book is bad. In fact, it is fantastic and I loved every moment I spent reading it. On the other hand, it feels too easy to recommend  an Agatha Christie book since she is one of the greatest selling authors of all time. But I digress. I loved it and that’s that.
Tommy and Tuppence are a wonderful one, two punch precisely because it is impossible to tell who is one and who is two. They are comrades and companions that rely on each other unlike say the Holmes and Watson pairing. I always felt that Holmes had the ability to solve any case by his lonesome and in many cases he did. But what makes it all the more wonderful is that the running dialogue between Tommy and Tuppence is fantastic. I’m always a sucker for witty dialogue and this is just about the best. They remind me vaguely of another witty and conversational couple: Nero Wolfe and Archie Goodwin. To not be outdone the story itself is also thrilling and leaves the best mystery until the end. So pick up a copy of The Secret Adversary. 

free ebook download: http://www.gutenberg.org/ebooks/1155

A Yellow Journalist by Miriam Michelson (1905)

This was a book I stumbled upon. I just tripped over it and when I looked back I was surprised. Welcome to the world of wild rumors, gossip and every underhanded ploy known to woman. Rhoda Massey is an up and coming journalist in and around San Francisco. Growing up in the Bay Area many of the names and places in this story hold a special meaning to me. These pages chronicle her time spent chasing secrets, stories and scoops. Like a great detective tracks a killer, Rhoda tracks her headline. The headlines range from murder and bribery to gambling. Each story is thrilling and fast-paced. Miriam Michelson creates twists and turns to puzzle and delight the reader. For all lovers of detective novels, please check out A Yellow Journalist.

download free ebook: https://archive.org/details/ayellowjournali00michgoog

download free audiobook: https://librivox.org/a-yellow-journalist-by-miriam-michelson/