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Zeno’s (established 1983) is an online used and out-of-print bookstore specializing in the categories of: literature in translation, modern first editions, and hard-to-find books. We started as a mail order business. In 1992 we moved into a storefront, and then to a bigger location a couple of years later. Eventually we closed the physical store to go online as zenosbooks.com. We have been selling our own hand-picked eclectic selection of used, hard-to-find, and even rare books via the internet ever since.













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 Sheriff John    FROM WIKIPEDIA - Sheriff John was an American children's television host who appeared on KTTV in Los Angeles from July 18, 1952, to July 10, 1970, on two separate series, Sheriff John's Lunch Brigade and Sheriff John's Cartoon Time. He was played by John Rovick, (October 2, 1919, Dayton, Ohio – October 6, 2012, Boise, Idaho) who had served as a radio operator-gunner in the United States Army Air Corps in World War II, surviving 50 combat missions in the European Theater of Operations. Following the war, he became a radio announcer, moving to television in its early days. Rovick developed the program's concept himself. As Sheriff John, he began each program entering his office, singing "Laugh and be happy, and the world will laugh with you." He then said the Pledge of Allegiance and read a safety bulletin. Rovick showed cartoons, including Q.T. Hush, Underdog, Crusader Rabbit and Porky Pig, and was often visited by farm animals. An artist, "Sketchbook Suzie", would draw pictures requested by viewers; he would complete squiggles sent by the children and make a squiggle for them to complete. Sheriff John would give lessons about safety and good health habits. The highlight of the show was the birthday celebration. Sheriff John would read as many as a hundred names, and then bring out a cake and sing the Birthday Party Polka ("Put Another Candle on my Birthday Cake"). In 1979, John Rovick reprised his role as Sheriff John on KTTV, briefly hosting a Sunday morning version of the TV series, TV POWWW. Rovick won an Emmy Award in 1952 and appeared on the Emmy broadcast in 1998, introduced by longtime fan Michael Richards. In 1981 Rovick retired from KTTV after 32 years. On October 6, 2012, he died in Boise, Idaho, after a brief illness. He had just turned 93 years old.



I grew up watching Sheriff John and I especially loved it when he used to sing "Put Another Candle on my Birthday Cake" before wishing a happy birthday to all those kids whose birthday was on that particular day. It is a tradition worth carrying on I think . . . So let's all sing along!





Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. San Francisco. 2018. City Lights. ISBN:9780872867239.  238 pages. paperback. Cover design by Herb Thornby.


9780872867239FROM THE PUBLISHER - 


With President Trump suggesting that teachers arm themselves, with the NRA portrayed as a group of "patriots" helping to Make America Great Again, with high school students across the country demanding a solution to the crisis, everyone in America needs to engage in the discussion about our future with an informed, historical perspective on the role of guns in our society. America is at a critical turning point. What is the future for our children? Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment, is a deeply researched—and deeply disturbing—history of guns and gun laws in the United States, from the original colonization of the country to the present. As historian and educator Dunbar-Ortiz explains, in order to understand the current obstacles to gun control, we must understand the history of U.S. guns, from their role in the "settling of America" and the early formation of the new nation, and continuing up to the present.


PRAISE FOR LOADED: "Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz's Loaded is like a blast of fresh air. She is no fan of guns or of our absurdly permissive laws surrounding them. But she does not merely take the liberal side of the familiar debate."—Adam Hochschild, The New York Review of Books. "If . . . anyone at all really wants to 'get to the root causes of gun violence in America,' they will need to start by coming to terms with even a fraction of what Loaded proposes."—Los Angeles Review of Books. "Her analysis, erudite and unrelenting, exposes blind spots not just among conservatives, but, crucially, among liberals as well. . . . As a portrait of the deepest structures of American violence, Loaded is an indispensable book."—The New Republic. "Dunbar-Ortiz's argument will be disturbing and unfamiliar to most readers, but her evidence is significant and should not be ignored."—Publishers Weekly. " . . . gun love is as American as apple pie—and that those guns have often been in the hands of a powerful white majority to subjugate minority natives, slaves, or others who might stand in the way of the broadest definition of Manifest Destiny."—Kirkus Reviews. "Trigger warning! This is a superb and subtle book, not an intellectual safe space for confirming your preconceptions—whatever those might be—but rather a deeply necessary provocation."—Christian Parenti, author of Lockdown America: Police and Prisons in the Age of Crisis. "Loaded recognizes the central truth about our 'gun culture': that the privileged place of guns in American law and society is the by-product of the racial and class violence that has marked our history from its beginnings."—Richard Slotkin, author of Gunfighter Nation: The Myth of the Frontier in Twentieth-Century America. "From an eminent scholar comes this timely and urgent intervention on U.S. gun culture. Loaded is a high-impact assault on the idea that Second Amendment rights were ever intended for all Americans. A timely antidote to our national amnesia about the white supremacist and settler colonialist roots of the Second Amendment."—Caroline Light, author of Stand Your Ground: A History of America's Love Affair with Lethal Self-Defense. "Loaded unleashes a sweeping and unsettling history of gun laws in the United States, beginning with anti-Native militias and anti-Black slave patrols. From the roots of white men armed to forge the settler state, the Second Amendment evolved as a tool for protecting white, male property owners. It's a must read for anyone who wants to uncover the long fetch of contemporary Second Amendment battles."—Kelly Lytle Hernandez, City of Inmates: Conquest, Rebellion, and the Rise of Human Caging in Los Angeles, 1771-1965. "Now, in Loaded, she widens her lens to propose that the addiction to violence characteristic of American domestic institutions also derives from the frontiersman's belief in solving problems by killing. Whether expressed in individual cruelty like the collection of scalps or group barbarism by settler colonialists calling themselves 'militias,' violence has become an ever-widening theme of life in the United States."—Staughton Lynd, author of Class Conflict, Slavery, and the United States Constitution. "For anyone who believes we need more than 'thoughts and prayers' to address our national gun crisis, Loaded is required reading. Beyond the Second Amendment, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz presents essential arguments missing from public debate. She forces readers to confront hard truths about the history of gun ownership, linking it to ongoing structures of settler colonialism, white supremacy, and racial capitalism. These are the open secrets of North American history. It is our anxious denial as much as our public policies that perpetrate violence. Only by coming to peace with our history can we ever be at peace with ourselves. This, for me, is the great lesson of Loaded."—Christina Heatherton, co-editor of Policing the Planet: Why the Policing Crisis Led to Black Lives Matter. "Roxanne Dunbar-Oritz's Loaded argues U.S. history is quintessential gun history, and gun history is a history of racial terror and genocide. In other words, gun culture has never been about hunting. From crushing slave rebellions to Indigenous resistance, arming individual white settler men has always been the strategy for maintaining racial and class rule and for taking Indigenous land from the founding of the settler nation to the present. With clarity and urgency, Dunbar-Ortiz asks us not to think of our current moment as an exceptional era of mass-shootings. Instead, the very essence of the Second Amendment and the very project of U.S. 'settler democracy' has required immense violence that began with Indigenous genocide and has expanded to endless war-making across the globe. This is a must read for any student of U.S. history."—Nick Estes, author of the forthcoming book Our History is the Future: Mni Wiconi and Native Liberation. "With her usual unassailable rigor for detail and deep perspective, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz has potentially changed the debate about gun control in the United States. She meticulously and convincingly argues that U.S. gun culture—and the domestic and global massacres that have flowed from it—must be linked to an understanding of the ideological, historical, and practical role of guns in seizing Native American lands, black enslavement, and global imperialism. This is an essential work for policy-makers, street activists, and educators who are concerned with Second Amendment debates, #blacklivematters campaigns, global peace, and community-based security."—Clarence Lusane, Chairman and Professor of Political Science at Howard University and author of The Black History of the White House. "Just what did the founding fathers intend the Second Amendment to do? Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz's answer to that question will unsettle liberal gun control advocates and open-carry aficionados alike. She follows the bloodstains of today's mass shootings back to the slave patrols and Indian Wars. There are no easy answers here, just the tough reckoning with history needed to navigate ourselves away from a future filled with more tragedies."—James Tracy, co-author of Hillbilly Nationalists, Urban Race Rebels and Black Power: Community Organizing in Radical Times. "Gun violence, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz compellingly shows, is as U.S. American as apple pie. This important book peels back the painful and bloody layers of gun culture in the United States, and exposes their deep roots in the killing and dispossession of Native peoples, slavery and its aftermath, and U.S. empire-making. They are roots with which all who are concerned with matters of justice, basic decency, and the enduring tragedy of the U.S. love affair with guns must grapple."—Joseph Nevins, author of Dying to Live: A Story of U.S. Immigration in an Age of Global Apartheid. "Loaded is a masterful synthesis of the historical origins of violence and militarism in the US. Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz reminds us of what we've chosen to forget at our own peril: that from mass shootings to the routine deployment of violence against civilians by the US military, American violence flows from the normalization of racialized violence in our country's founding history."—Johanna Fernández, Assistant Professor of History at Baruch College of the City University, and author of the forthcoming book, When the World Was Their Stage: A History of the Young Lords Party, 1968–1976. "More than a history of the Second Amendment, this is a powerful history of the forging of white nationalism and empire through racist and naked violence. Explosively, it also shows how even liberal—and some leftist—pop culture icons have been complicit in the myth-making that has shrouded this potent historical truth."—Gerarld Horne, author of The Counter Revolution of 1776: Slave Resistance and the Origins of the USA. "Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz has done an outstanding job of resituating the so-called gun debate into the context of race and settler colonialism. The result is that the discussion about individual gun ownership is no longer viewed as an abstract moral question and instead understood as standing at the very foundation of U.S. capitalism. My attention was captured from the first page."—Bill Fletcher, Jr., former president of TransAfrica Forum and syndicated writer. "Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz provides a brilliant decolonization of the Second Amendment of the United States Constitution. She describes how the 'savage wars' against Indigenous Peoples, slave patrols (which policing in the U.S. originates from), today's mass shootings, and the rise in white Nationalism are connected to the Second Amendment. This is a critically important work for all social science disciplines."—Michael Yellow Bird, professor and director of Tribal and Indigenous Peoples Studies at North Dakota State University. "This explosive, ground-breaking book dispels the confusion and shatters the sanctimony that surrounds the Second Amendment, revealing the colonial, racist core of the right to bear arms. You simply cannot understand the United States and its disastrous gun-mania without the brilliant Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz as a guide."—Astra Taylor, author of The People's Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age. "There is no more interesting historian of the United States than Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz. And with Loaded she has done it again, taking a topic about which so much has already been written, distilling it down, turning it inside out, and allowing us to see American history anew."—Walter Johnson, author of River of Dark Dreams: Slavery and Empire in the Mississippi Valley's Cotton Kingdom. "Not only does it rank as one of the most insightful and brilliant books on the layered and deeply textured analysis of the second amendment, gun culture, racism, and white supremacy, among other issues, that I have read in years, but the writing is just lyrical and poetic. A model for combining social commitment, theoretical rigorousness, and accessibility. Certainly will be using in my classes."—Henry Giroux, author of American Nightmare: Facing the Challenge of Fascism.



Dunbar Ortiz RoxanneRoxanne Dunbar-Ortiz is an American historian, writer and feminist. Born in San Antonio, Texas, in 1939 to an Oklahoma family, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz grew up in Central Oklahoma, daughter of a sharecropper and a half-Native American mother.








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Dom Casmurro by Joaquim Maria Machado De Assis. New York. 1953. Noonday Press. Translated from the Portuguese by Helen Caldwell. 283 pages. hardcover. Cover: Format by Sidney Solomon.


dom casmurro noondayFROM THE PUBLISHER - 


Considered by many Machado’s greatest work, DOM CASMURRO is a novel of love and suspected betrayal. It traces the flowering and destruction of a childhood romance. In Portuguese, casmurro means a morose, tight-lipped man, withdrawn within himself. Bento Santiago, hero and narrator of this novel, is such a person, ironically called ‘Dom Casmurro’ by his friends. The darkness and shadows of the present dissipate as Bento sketches his memories of youth. We are introduced to his childhood friend Capitu, (with her beautiful hair and ‘her eyes like the tide’) and we see her change from playmate to sweetheart. The dilemma of young love is made poignant through the efforts of the young people to resist Bento’s mother’s intention to make him a priest. The quarrels, the desire for each other, so clumsy and youthful, the complex evasion of adult watchfulness, are described so adroitly that the reader feels his own life being told. But Bento’s tragedy is already implicit in these apparently idyllic moments. He is a man born to be deceived or to deceive himself. The startlingly original denouement of this novel permits either interpretation. Those who read DOM CASMURRO will not easily forget it.






Assis Joaquim Maria Machado DeJoaquim Maria Machado de Assis, often known as Machado de Assis, Machado, or Bruxo do Cosme Velho, (June 21, 1839, Rio de Janeiro-September 29, 1908, Rio de Janeiro) was a Brazilian novelist, poet and short-story writer. He is widely regarded as the most important writer of Brazilian literature. However, he did not gain widespread popularity outside Brazil in his own lifetime. Machado’s works had a great influence on Brazilian literary schools of the late 19th century and 20th century. José Saramago, Carlos Fuentes, Susan Sontag and Harold Bloom are among his admirers and Bloom calls him ‘the supreme black literary artist to date.’ Son of Francisco José de Assis (a mulatto housepainter, descendent of freed slaves) and Maria Leopoldina Machado de Assis (a Portuguese washerwoman), Machado de Assis lost both his mother and his only sister at an early age. Machado is said to have learned to write by himself, and he used to take classes for free will. He learned to speak French first and English later, both fluently. He started to work for newspapers in Rio de Janeiro, where he published his first works and met established writers such as Joaquim Manuel de Macedo. Machado de Assis married Carolina Xavier de Novais, a Portuguese descendant of a noble family. Soon the writer got a public job and this stability permitted him to write his best works. Machado de Assis began by writing popular novels which sold well, much in the late style of José de Alencar. His style changed in the 1880s, and it is for the sceptical, ironic, comedic but ultimately pessimistic works he wrote after this that he is remembered: the first novel in his ‘new style’ was Epitaph for a Small Winner, known in the new Gregory Rabassa translation as The Posthumous Memoirs of Brás Cubas (a literal translation of the original title, Memórias Póstumas de Brás Cubas). In their brilliant comedy and ironic playfulness, these resemble in some ways the contemporary works of George Meredith in the United Kingdom, and Eça de Queirós in Portugal, but Machado de Assis’ work has a far bleaker emotional undertone. Machado’s work has also been compared with Laurence Sterne’s Tristram Shandy. Machado de Assis could speak English fluently and translated many works of William Shakespeare and other English writers into Portuguese. His work contains numerous allusions to Shakespearean plays, John Milton and influences from Sterne and Meredith. He is also known as a master of the short story, having written classics of the genre in the Portuguese language, such as O Alienista, Missa do Galo, ‘A Cartomante’ and ‘A Igreja do Diabo.’ Along with other writers and intellectuals, Machado de Assis founded the Brazilian Academy of Letters in 1896 and was its president from 1897 to 1908, when he died.


Caldwell HelenThe Translator, HELEN CALDWELL, is a member of the Department of Classics of the University of California. Her varied career includes such positions as lecturer on Anthropology for the Los Angeles Board of Education and dancer with Michio Ito and Company. She was awarded first prize in a translation contest sponsored by Mademoiselle in conjunction with the Committee on Cultural Relations with Latin America and the Pan-American Union. Format by Sidney Solomon.






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Notes of a Native Son by James Baldwin. Boston. 1955. Beacon Press. 175 pages. hardcover.


notes of a native son beacon press 1955 no dwFROM THE PUBLISHER - 


NOTES OF A NATIVE SON is a non-fiction book by James Baldwin. It was Baldwin's first non-fiction book, and was published in 1955. The volume collects ten of Baldwin's essays, which had previously appeared in such magazines as Harper's Magazine, Partisan Review, and The New Leader. The essays mostly tackle issues of race in America and Europe. Since its original publication in 1955, this first nonfiction collection of essays by James Baldwin remains an American classic. His impassioned essays on life in Harlem, the protest novel, movies, and African Americans abroad are as powerful today as when they were first written. ‘A straight-from-the-shoulder writer, writing about the troubled problems of this troubled earth with an illuminating intensity.’ - Langston Hughes, The New York Times Book Review. ‘Written with bitter clarity and uncommon grace.’ – Time.












Baldwin JamesJAMES BALDWIN was born in New York City on August 2, 1924. He was the first of nine children and grew up in Harlem where his father was a minister. For six years, after his graduation from high school in 1942, he found work in a variety of minor jobs. When he was twenty-four he left for Europe and lived there almost ten years. During this time, he wrote his first three books: GO TELL IT ON THE MOUNTAIN, NOTES OF A NATIVE SON, and GIOVANNI’S ROOM. They firmly established him as one of America’s outstanding young writers. In 1937, he returned to New York. , where he lived when not on one of his frequent trips abroad. In 1961, Mr. Baldwin’s fourth book, the collection of brilliant essays entitled NOBODY KNOWS MY NAME, brought him broad public recognition as well as distinguished critical attention. Perhaps the most meaningful book ever to discuss being Negro in America, NOBODY KNOWS MY NAME was the recipient of numerous awards and a devoted following. The following year brought similar acclaim for his best-selling novel, ANOTHER COUNTRY. In 1963, the prophetic THE FIRE NEXT TIME jolted both the critical world and the bookbuying public. Instantly acclaimed, as Granville Hick said, as ‘a great document of our times, in literary power as well as in strength of feeling and clarity of insight,’ the book rushed to the top of all the best-seller lists. James Baldwin is also the author of three plays. The first, THE AMEN CORNER, was originally produced at Howard University. It had a long and successful run in Los Angeles, later opened on Broadway in 1965, and, as GOING TO MEET THE MAN was published, another production toured the world under the auspices of the State Department. A dramatization of GIOVANNI’S ROOM was staged by the Actor’s Studio workshop. In 1964, his BLUES FOR MR. CHARLEY opened off Broadway and was published simultaneously in book form. Like THE AMEN CORNER, it has been produced throughout this country and Europe.





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Black Fauns by Alfred Mendes. London. 1935. Duckworth. 328 pages. hardcover.


black faunsFROM THE PUBLISHER - 


ALFRED MENDES was born in Trinidad in 1897. Mendes’ creative writing belongs to ‘The Beacon’ period of Caribbean literature, which launched the early novels of the English-speaking Caribbean in the 1920s and 1930s. His first novel PITCH LAKE was published in 1934 and his second BLACK FAUNS followed a year later. In the capital of a Caribbean island, the BLACK FAUNS - Mamitz, Martha, Estelle, Christophine, Ma Christine, Miriam and Ethelrida - wash clothes for a living in the intimacy of their barrack yard. It is the 1930s. In two facing rows of rooms, each room a habitation, and separated by the expanse of communal yard, the women are quarrelsome, supportive and reflective, tender and fierce with one another. Memories and bitterness are green. Ma Christine with her obeah and speechifying about her dead husband; Miriam, the objective level-headed philosopher voraciously learned in her insights of the world; Etheirida, bristling with fire; Mamitz, secret but smart and ruthless in her determination to survive; and Martha, in fear of her shadow concealing deep springs of passion and love. It is Martha’s love affairs, first with Estelle, and then with Snakey, Ma Christine’s son, which finally lead to murder and the destruction of the yard community.






Mendes AlfredAlfred Hubert Mendes (18 November 1897-1991), novelist and short-story writer, was a leading member of the 1930s ‘Beacon group’ of writers (named after the literary magazine The Beacon) in Trinidad that included Albert Gomes, C. L. R. James and Ralph de Boissière. Mendes is best known as the author of two novels - PITCH LAKE (1934) and BLACK FAUNS (1935) - and for his short stories written during the 1920s and 1930s. He was ‘one of the first West Indian writers to set the pattern of emigration in the face of the lack of publishing houses and the small reading public in the West Indies.’ Born in Trinidad the eldest of six children in a Portuguese Creole family, Mendes was educated in Port of Spain until 1912, then at the age of 15 went to continue his studies in the United Kingdom. His hopes of going on to university there were interrupted by the outbreak of World War I. After briefly returning to Trinidad in 1915, against his father’s wishes he joined the Merchants' Contingents of Trinidad - whose purpose was to enroll and transport to England young men who wished to serve in the war ‘for King and Country’ - and sailed back to Britain. He served in the 1st Rifle Brigade, and fought for two years in Flanders, along the Belgian Front, and was awarded a Military Medal for distinguishing himself on the battlefield. Towards the end of the war, he accidentally inhaled the poisonous gas used as a weapon by the German army, and was sent back to Britain to recover. Mendes returned to Trinidad in 1919, and worked in his wealthy father's provisions business, while spending his spare time writing poetry and fiction, and in establishing contact with other writers, artists and scholars. In 1933 he went to New York, remaining there until 1940. While in the USA he joined literary salons and associated with writers including Richard Wright, Countee Cullen, Claude McKay, William Saroyan, Benjamin Appel, Tom Wolfe, Malcolm Lowry and Ford Madox Ford. He went back to Trinidad again in 1940. Together with C. L. R. James, Mendes produced two issues of a pioneering literary magazine called Trinidad (Christmas 1929 and Easter 1930). Several of his stories appeared in The Beacon, the journal edited by Albert Gomes from March 1931 until November 1933. Mendes was quoted as saying in 1972: ‘James and I departed from the convention in the selection of our material, in the choice of a strange way of life, in the use of a new dialect. And these departures are still with our Caribbean successors.’ In all Mendes published about 60 short stories in magazines and journals in Trinidad, New York, London and Paris. His first novel Pitch Lake appeared in 1934, with an introduction by Aldous Huxley, and was followed by BLACK FAUNS in 1935. Both novels are significant in the history of literature from the Caribbean region and are landmarks in the establishment of social realism in the West Indian novel. In 1940, Mendes abandoned writing and worked in Trinidad's civil service, becoming General Manager of the Port Services Department. He was one of the foundering members of the United Front, a party with socialist leanings that participated in the 1946 general elections. After his retirement in 1972, he lived in Mallorca and Gran Canaria and ultimately settled in Barbados. In 1972 he was awarded an honorary D. Litt. by the University of the West Indies for his contribution to the development of West Indian literature. He began writing his autobiography in 1975 and his unfinished drafts were edited by Michèle Levy and published in 2002 by the University of the West Indies Press as THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF ALFRED H. MENDES 1897-1991. Mendes and his wife Ellen both died in 1991 in Barbados and are buried together there in Christ Church Cemetery. Mendes married in October 1919, and had a son, Alfred John, the following year. His first wife, Jessie Rodriguez, died of pneumonia after only two years of marriage. A second marriage, a year later, ended in divorce in 1938. His third wife was Ellen Perachini, mother of his last two sons, Peter and Stephen. He is the grandfather of film director Sam Mendes.




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Genocide and Vendetta: The Round Valley Wars Of Northern California by Lynwood Carranco and Estle Beard. Norman. 1981.  University Of Oklahoma Press. ISBN:0806115491. 403 pages. hardcover.


0806115491FROM THE PUBLISHER -  High in the Coast Range of Northern California, between the snowy peaks called the Yolla Bollies and the coastal redwood forests, lie several fertile valleys which were the traditional home- lands of the Yuki, Wailaki, Huchnom, Lassik, and other Indian tribes. In this idyllic setting, particularly in Round Valley in northeastern Mendocino County, occurred some of the most horrible scenes in California history. This exciting account draws on primary sources to tell for the first time the fascinating and shocking truth about the early settlers of this California frontier. The first six chapters of Genocide and Vendetta present the history of the Yolla Bolly Country up to 1865, describing the region, the culture of the Yuki and their neighbors, and the depredations of the white settlers. In twenty-five years the native populations were nearly extirpated by the whites’ murderous raids and wholesale kidnappings of Indian women and children and by the fraud and malfeasance of the California Indian Superintendent and his subagents. The second part of the book, covering the years from 1865 to 1905, is about the lives and fortunes of the white men and women who settled in the Yolla Bolly Country-among them the Asbill brothers, who first discovered Round Valley; Kate Robertson As- bill; and Cattle King George E. White, whose outlaw buckeroos murdered and rustled to establish for him one of the richest cattle empires in the West. When two of White’s former workers dared to operate their own spread deep in White’s territory, one of them was shot and lynched by White’s henchmen. This was the culmination of what reporters called ‘the bitterest quarrel of all the West,’ ‘the only deadly feud in California.’ The cowardly and brutal act and the drawn-out murder trials that followed make sensational reading. After an allegation of (unintentional) plagiarism was leveled against the section written by Estle Beard, the publisher investigated, agreed with the complaint, and withdrew the book from sale. Since both authors have since passed away, it seems unlikely that this book will ever be republished or converted into an e-book. The original hardcover is the only way to read about this troubled era in Northern California's history.


LYNWOOD CARRANCO was Professor of English in College of the Redwoods, Eureka, California, and the author of several books and many articles on California history. ESTLE BEARD was a retired cattle rancher and history buff in Covelo, California.




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Karl Marx by Isaiah Berlin. London. 1939. Thornton Butterworth. Author's 1st Book. The Home University Library. hardcover. 256 pages.




karl marx isaiah berlin no dwFROM THE PUBLISHER - 

First published over fifty years ago, Isaiah Berlin’s compelling portrait of the father of socialism has long been considered a classic of modern scholarship and the best short account written of Marx’s life and thought. It provides a penetrating, lucid, and comprehensive introduction to Marx as theorist of the socialist revolution, illuminating his personality and ideas, and concentrating on those which have historically formed the central core of Marxism as a theory and practice. Berlin goes on to present an account of Marx’s life as one of the most influential and incendiary social philosophers of the twentieth century and depicts the social and political atmosphere in which Marx wrote.





  Berlin IsaiahSir Isaiah Berlin (6 June 1909 – 5 November 1997), British of Russian-Jewish origin, was a social and political theorist, philosopher and historian of ideas, ‘thought by many to be the dominant scholar of his generation’. He excelled as an essayist, conversationalist and raconteur; and as a brilliant lecturer who improvised, rapidly and spontaneously, richly allusive and coherently structured material. He translated works by Ivan Turgenev from Russian into English and, during the war, worked for the British Diplomatic Service. In its obituary of the scholar, The Independent stated that ‘Isaiah Berlin was often described, especially in his old age, by means of superlatives: the world's greatest talker, the century's most inspired reader, one of the finest minds of our time ... there is no doubt that he showed in more than one direction the unexpectedly large possibilities open to us at the top end of the range of human potential’. In 1932, at the age of 23, he was elected to a prize fellowship at All Souls College, Oxford. From 1957 to 1967, he was Chichele Professor of Social and Political Theory at the University of Oxford. He was president of the Aristotelian Society from 1963 to 1964. In 1966, he played a crucial role in founding Wolfson College, Oxford, and became its first President. He was appointed a CBE in 1946, knighted in 1957, and was awarded the Order of Merit in 1971. He was President of the British Academy from 1974 to 1978. He also received the 1979 Jerusalem Prize for his writings on individual freedom. The annual Isaiah Berlin Lectures are held at the Hampstead Synagogue and both Wolfson College and the British Academy each summer. Berlin's work on liberal theory and on value pluralism has had a lasting influence.





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New American Library and Signet Classics



The New American Library Signet Classics were a ground-breaking line of paperback books for their time that had a tremendous impact on the book industry of mid-20th century American. While primarily geared to a secondary school market, they also managed to bring an amazingly diverse selection of classic titles to the general American book-buying public, at a reasonable price with innovative and attractive covers.   


 As early as 1836 British companies were producing cheap “yellowback” books, mostly reprints, for a mass audience of readers as literary rates rose in England. Publishers in Germany, mostly notably Reclam of Leipzig, created their own cheap paper reprint editions with their Universal-Bibliothek mass market series in 1867. Reclam also became the first company to introduce book vending machines to Germany.

While the 19th century brought numerous improvements in the printing, publishing and book-distribution processes, particularly with the introduction of such technology as the steam-powered printing presses, pulp mills, automatic type-setting, and a network of railways, it wasn’t until the German publisher Albatross Books streamlined the paperback format in 1931 that the real seeds of a 20th century paperback revolution were truly sown. Albatross came up with a new standardized size (181 x 111 mm), and used sans-serif fonts designed by British typographer Stanley Morison. They also color-coded their titles by according to genre. The series was very successful for Albatross Books until the advent of World War II put an end to their publishing experiment. In 1935 however, Penguin Books adopted many of Albatross' innovations, including a conspicuous logo and color-coded covers for different genres. British publisher Allen Lane launched the Penguin Books imprint in 1935 with only ten reprint titles and began a paperback revolution in the English-language book-market. Lane’s ambition was to produce inexpensive books and sell a lot of them.


After purchasing paperback rights from publishers, Lane would do what were then large print runs, sometimes as many as 20,000 copies of a book. It was all part of his strategy to keep his unit cost low. Booksellers were a little skeptical of the new format a first, so Lane explored non-traditional market, like department stores, including Woolworth’s. It didn’t take long for the idea to catch on and as bookstores began carrying Lane’s books, "Penguin" became closely associated with the word "paperback.”

Robert de Graaf created Pocket Books in partnership with Simon & Schuster in 1939 and “pocket book” synonymous with the paperback in the United States.  The biggest difference of substance between Penguin and Pocket Books was probably their different approach to cover treatments. De Graaf also aimed for a broad appeal and utilized the magazine and newspaper distribution networks to reach that audience.

British Penguins opened an office in New York in July of 1939, tasked with importing Penguins and Pelicans to the United States. They started with 100 British Penguin, a staff of two, and hired a young American to direct the branch named Ian Ballantine.

Given that the imports first needed to come from England to New York, and then be distributed to American booksellers, the American Penguin office found themselves at a serious disadvantage in terms of getting and keeping the right titles in stock to fill demand. They needed an effective system of distribution akin to what Pocket Books had already created. It was necessary to choose titles carefully when it came to importing.

Penguin grew slowly, a little too slowly for Allen Lane, the head of British Penguin, who was not entirely impressed with Ballantine’s results. He reached out to Kurt Enoch, who had escaped the Nazis in Germany, and made him the vie-president of Penguin Books, Inc.  In 1943 Enoch hired Gobin Stair to oversee production and design. Stair in turn hired a number of illustrators like H. Lawrence Hoffman and Lester Kohs to produce cover of good taste and relative modesty, but still different than the British Penguin which at the time consisted exclusively of typographical styled covers. These new cover treatments did not please Allen Lane, who thought the cover art perhaps a little too garish. The true is that nearly all of the other paperback publishers at the time were producing covers with more innovative artwork, and Ballantine and Enoch did not think that the strictly typographical cover had a chance of selling in the States. They were simply too different from their competition, and not in a good way. A split with Penguin in England was inevitable. Enoch had hired a cover artist named Robert Jonas, who designed the cover of Erskine Caldwell’s TROUBLE IN JULY in 1945. Jonas had strong beliefs about balancing social consciousness with art and had an enormous impact on the artwork of the American Penguins of that time.

Also in 1945, Ian Ballantine left the American branch of Penguin to start Bantam Books and Victor Weybright became part of Penguin’s management. While the relationship with British Penguin was a decent one, Kurt Enoch and Victor Weybright decided in 1948 start their own publishing company, the New American Library of World Literature, Inc. (NAL), and Signet books made their first appearance in the summer of 1948.

Kurt Enoch and Victor Weybright in 1958

 They broke their ties with British Penguin and after a short period where a few “Penguin Signets” and “Penguin Mentors” still appeared, dropped “Penguin” from the imprint names altogether. Mentor Books, as a quality line of nonfiction (their slogan "Good Reading for the Millions."), was most certainly an outgrowth of Pelican in the UK, as the Signet Classics line became the American version of the Penguin Classic.

Victor Weybright had his fans and his detractors. He no doubt had vision. Andre Schiffren called him “a flamboyant man who gloried in his snobberies and pretensions,” who managed to surround himself with talented editors. Schiffrin also noted Weybright’s “unmitigated anti-Semitism” in his THE BUSINESS OF BOOKS published in 2000 by Verso. E. L. Doctorow, when a NAL editor, had this to say regarding Weybright – “He had a good restless mind and loved to wheel and deal.” On the other hand Weybright was in his estimation susceptible to people who knew that Weybright had aspirations to “be one of the ‘big boys’.”

Kurt Enoch received better treatment by Schiffren, perhaps because Enoch was the one who actually hired Schiffren. Enoch was described as a “small, trim, very shy, and a model German intellectual,” who had an early understanding of the importance of the paperback, perhaps because he had been one of the founders of Albatross in Germany

Weybright clearly had a good editorial eye. In addition to bringing Mickey Spillane and Ian Fleming’s James Bond books to NAL’s and insuring the company’s commercial position in the industry, his decision to publish a number of African-American authors of the day was visionary. The authors he brought to NAL included William Motley, Richard Wright, William Gardener Smith, Chester Himes, Ann Petry, and Ralph Ellison.  


The Signet list was not only a commercial success. They received critical praise for the list of important author that they had assembled, including works by William Faulkner, James T. Farrell, George Orwell, Arthur Koestler, D. H. Lawrence, Jack Kerouac, Ayn Rand, Ken Kesey, Sinclair Lewis, Margaret Mead, John Kenneth Galbraith, Paul Bowles, Curzio Malaparte, Alberto Moravia, and J. D. Salinger. All this and they still produced plenty of westerns and other genre titles too. 



At one point Robert Jonas, designer and artist, stopped illustrating Signet Westerns and started producing most of the covers (more than 95% through the 1950s) of the Mentor covers. He was also responsible for the typography of the Signet covers. By the mid-1950s both Signet and Mentor covers had been given a more modern look under the direction of Bill Gregory, who replaced John Legakes as art director in 1961. It was Gregory who would produce new colophons and brought a brand new look to New American Library’s line of Signet Classics with launched in 1959.

By 1960 most of the paperback publishing house were producing public domain classic geared to a school audience, both secondary and college. Many of these lines were clearly influenced by the British Penguin and Pelicans, and cover artists like Edward Gorey (Anchor) and Leonard Baskin (Vintage) were highly sought after.

 The Signet Classics line had a reputation for success with their cover illustrations by employing a variety of artists, many of whom had never illustrated book covers before, but were well known as illustrators. Milton Glaser designed the Signet Classics Shakespeare series and received a number of awards for his cover artwork.   

When the first Signet Classics were published, NAL was at a peak of their financial success. Even though both Bantam and Pocket Books had their own lines of classics, the Signet Classics line quickly became the dominant mass market publisher of classics.

Before starting at Pantheon, the small publisher that his father Jacques Schiffrin had started, Andre Schiffrin worked for New American Library. According to Andre Schiffren in his book THE BUSINESS OF BOOKS, it was a memo that he wrote to editor Arabel Porter suggesting possibilities for the first Signet Classics that helped to spark a favorable response to the idea and led to the publishing of the series.

Arabel Porter was considered something of a “high priestess among young writers,” and was described as a quiet and unpretentious intellectual. She was the force behind New American Library’s New World Writing literary magazine, published between 1952 and 1959, which was  modeled partly on John Lehmann’s Penguin New Writing , published in England from 1940-1950.   New World Writing was published in fifteen biannual issues and featured works of fiction, drama, essays, and poetry by new and leading writers from around the world. Contributors included Gore Vidal, Flannery O’Connor, Jack Kerouac, W. H. Auden, James Baldwin, Samuel Beckett, Saul Bellow, Jorge Luis Borges, Bertolt Brecht, E. E. Cummings, Jean Genet, André Gide, Christopher Isherwood, Norman Mailer, Pablo Picasso, Kenneth Rexroth, William Carlos Williams, Upton Sinclair, Wallace Stevens, Eugène Ionesco, Octavio Paz and Tennessee Williams. The corrected typescript of "Catch-18" by Joseph Heller, which eventually became the first chapter of Catch-22, was originally published in issue #7. According to her boss, Victor Weybright, Arabel J. Porter was ‘a Bohemian Quakeress, with inspired eyes and ears which seem to see and hear all the significant manifestations of the literary, dramatic and graphic arts.’ Marc Jaffe referred to her thusly – “She was a very warm person,” and he added that she was sensitive to the words on a page.

Considering that the very first Signet Classic turned out to be a book that Schiffren proposed, the 19th century French classic Adolphe and the Red Notebook by Benjamin Constant (CD1), I would say that Andre Schiffren can indeed lay claim to being a major player in the creation of the Classics series.

“In these two remarkable works, a brilliant, vain, long - suffering Frenchman describes the first twenty years of his life and their culmination in a tortured love affair with an older, possessive woman of the world. Benjamin Constant attempted to conceal the fact that these two books were autobiographical. But to his familiars, it was clear that he himself was Adolphe. And in the intimate account of his strange liaison with Ellénore, he may well have been protesting against his inexorable bondage to his fiery, demanding mistress, Madame de Staël. Constant was an able parliamentarian, a champion of liberalism and the author of the History of Religion. But posterity remembers him as the man who bared the anatomy of a destructive passion in the story of Adolphe.”

NAL also published new editions of classic works — for example, a Shakespeare series — which featured renowned scholars, editors, and translators; many of these editions were oriented toward high school and college readership. Even before the acquisition by Times Mirror, Victor Weybright had been interested in creating a well-edited series of Shakespeare’s plays. He contacted Sylvan Barnet of Tufts University and over a bowl of corn flakes and coffee they came up with a tentative deal where Barnet would serve as the general editor of the Signet Classics Shakespeare series and find other specific editors for each individual volume. There is little doubt that the Signet Classics Shakespeare series was created partly to directly compete with Pocket’s Folger Library editions of Shakespeare’s plays.

Signet even at one point had plans to publish a Signet Classic edition of CATCHER IN THE RYE by J. D. Salinger, but that wound up getting scuttled due to Salinger’s displeasure with deliberations over the paperback cover of the book. He also didn’t want a foreword or an afterword, even if it was by a notable critic. It didn’t help that such an amazingly popular author refused to allow his picture on earlier paperback editions. There was even a suggestion to have a line drawing made of Salinger much like the author portraits that appeared on the front free endpaper accompanying a short biographical piece of each Signet Classic, particularly in the earlier editions. That wasn’t going to fly with Salinger. An internal memo from August 17, 1959) signed by both Truman Talley and Peter Gruenthal settled it, “Please drop Catcher in the Rye from the February, 1960 list of Signet Classics. This title will probably not reappear on future Signet Classic lists due to unusual author-trade publisher-NAL relationship.” Coincidentally, that same month saw the publication of the inaugural batch of the Signet Classics line. Salinger went on to Bantam who publishes him to this day. The rather nondescript typographical covers of the Bantam edition were of course designed by Salinger himself.

In 1959, paperbacks were distributed to the 4,000 bookstore covering the United States at the time and through what were called ID (Independent Distributors) wholesalers, to the many non-bookstore accounts across the country – newsstands, drug stores, grocery stores, etc., numbering over 70,000 outlets. The ID wholesalers grew out of the old magazine distribution network that had come into being during Prohibition to distribute racing forms, and quite possibly alcohol itself. They started with magazines, but as the paperback revolution took hold, they began distributing books as well. Returns were high with the IDs though, so the risk was great even though the payoff could be substantial when a title worked for them.    

With Kurt Enoch devoting himself to the business end of NAL – production, sales, and distribution – and Victor Weybright focusing on the editorial aspects, NAL was not only receiving the praise for readers, critics, and educators, they had become a very profitable publisher. NAL had achieved that balance between commercialism and editorial excellence, and by the late 1950s NAL had grown to be the largest paperback house in the country. 

To secure NAL’s future Enoch and Weybright decided that the best way was for the company to go public. They made overtures to Times Mirror, and a final agreement between the two parties went into effect on March 24, 1960. The merger had positive results for Times Mirror immediately, meaning that their stock rose. Unfortunately though, tensions between Enoch and Weybright increased, leading to Weybright’s eventual resignation from NAL.   

The continual corporate interference in matters editorial however led both Victor Weybright and Truman Talley to leave the company in 1966. Publishing had entered the era of the corporate manager. Many of the most talented of the NAL editorial staff wound up leaving as a result – E. L. Doctorow to Dial press, Arabel Porter to Houghton Mifflin, and Marc Jaffe to Bantam.

New American Library changed ownership hands three times over a period of 27 years. In 1960 Times Mirror of Los Angeles owned by the Chandler family and publishers of the Los Angeles Times, bought NAL (at the time the second ranking paperback publisher in size and power). Although NAL supposedly operated autonomously within the Mirror Company structure, and NAL's management remained unchanged, they were soon to become just another mass market line. In the 1970s President of New American Library Herbert K. Schnall said that “it almost doesn’t pay to buy something for under $100,000,” reflecting a more corporate mentality towards acquisitions.

In 1983 Odyssey Partners and Ira J. Hechler bought NAL from the Times Mirror Company for over $50 million, and then in 1985 New American Library purchased hardcover publisher E. P. Dutton. By this time, the Wheatland Corporation (controlled by Ann Getty and George Weidenfeld) now owned Grove Press, Random House bought Times Books, Simon & Schuster purchased Prentice-Hall, Macmillan in a feeding frenzy bought Scribner's, Atheneum, and Rawson Associates, in addition to the remains of Bobbs-Merrill (and then liquidated it as quickly as they could). The consolidation of publishing was in full swing. 

Bill Targ, former editor for World Publishing Company and G. P. Putnam’s  Sons described the new corporate masters of American publishing as “megalomaniacs and wheeler-dealers” and “market analysts with slide rules up their arses and a power glint in their eyes.”

In 1987, the NAL was reintegrated by purchase into the Penguin Publishing Company, its original parent company. On February 22, 1985 NAL announced its purchase of E. P. Dutton, and in 1986 Peter Mayer, chief executive officer of Penguin Publishing announced Penguin’s purchase of NAL. This was effectively the end of New American Library other than as a publishing component of Penguin and much later Random House.




Sources cited –




Baines, Phil. Penguin By Design: A Cover Story 1935-2005. New York. 2005. Penguin Books. 255 pages. 9780141024233

  The extraordinary story of Penguin covers and their rich and diverse design heritage. Ever since the creation of the first Penguin paperbacks in 1935, their jackets have become a constantly evolving part of Britain’s culture and design history. Rich with stunning illustrations and filled with details of individual titles, designers and even the changing size and shape of the Penguin logo itself, this book shows how covers become in design classics. By looking back at seventy years of Penguin paperbacks, Phil Baines charts the development of British publishing, book-cover design and the role of artists and designers in creating and defining the Penguin look. Coupling in-depth analysis of designers - from Jan Tschichold to Romek Marber - with a broad survey of the range of series and titles published - from early Penguins and Pelicans, to wartime and 1960s Specials, Classics, fiction and reference - this is a distinctive picture of how Penguin has consistently established its identity through its covers, influenced by – and influencing - the wider development of graphic design and the changing fashions in typography, photography, illustration and printing techniques. Filled with inspiring images, PENGUIN BY DESIGN demonstrates just how difficult it is not to judge a book by its cover. Phil Baines was born in Kendal, Westmorland, in 1958. He graduated from St Martin’s School of Art in 1985 and the Royal College of Art in 1987, and has been a Senior Lecturer at Central Saint Martin’s College of Art & Design since 1991. He is author and designer of TYPE & TYPOGRAPHY (with Andrew Haslam, 2002) and SIGNS: LETTERING IN THE ENVIRONMENT (with Catherine Dixon, 2003), both published by Laurence King. He is also a freelance graphic designer whose clients have included the Crafts Council, Goethe-Institut London, Matt’s Gallery and Monotype Typography. His work often includes the use of his own typefaces, three of which have been released for general use: Can You? (1991) and Ushaw (1994) by Fuse,and Vere Dignum by Linotype in 2003.

Bonn, Thomas L.. Heavy Traffic & High Culture: New American Library as Literary Gatekeeper in the Paperback Revolution. Carbondale. 1989. Southern Illinois University Press. 241 pages. 0809314789

   This is a book about the magical names in literature, about the literary heritage of a nation balanced against a backdrop of big business; it is the story of New American library from 1946 to 1961 and of Victor Weybright, the publisher whose talismanic phrase, ‘luster and lucre,’ characterizes both the cultural and financial formu1a that guided this giant paperback house. The book is based on the editorial correspondence at NAL from the company’s beginning in 1945 until just after its purchase by the Times-Mirror Company. Generally ignoring financial, marketing, and production records, the files that form the core of this book concentrate on interoffice memoranda to and from editorial staff and feature letters to and from authors, agents, publishers, and readers. Bonn shows how Weybright and copublisher Kurt Enoch advanced NAL from a poor, scarcely tolerated relation - as were all paperback reprinters - in the publishing family to a prestigious, even proprietary publisher, initiating contracts and discovering new talent. By the middle of the l950s, many hardcover publishing houses were accepting original manuscripts based on their anticipated mass market paperback sales. Bonn employs the ‘gatekeeper’ theory of communication to account for much of NAL’s success, citing Weybright as chief gatekeeper. Explaining this theory as Weybright applied it, Bonn notes that ‘the tension on the gate’s spring is created by the cultural contribution the work is likely to make tempered by its projected balance sheet.’ Weybright brought harmony to the conflicting interests of culture vs. commerce; his goal was ‘heavy traffic, high culture’ or John Steinbeck, Tennessee Williams, William Faulkner, Truman Capote, Ernest Hemingway and others at the dimly remembered 25 cents per copy. Bonn focuses on Weybright’s dealings with Bennett Cerf and Random House, Charles Scribner’s Sons, Alfred A. Knopf, and other hardback houses to show how NAL acquired titles. In this book, notable for its previously unpublished correspondence by major figures, Bonn scores another triumph by examining the phenomenon of paperback abridgment. These letters reveal the reactions of James M. Cain, James Jones, and Robert Penn Warren when paperback economics killed as many as half of their words. Well-founded fear of censorship, these files reveal, consumed much money and time, yet of all of the books on the NAL list, only Erskine Caldwell’s God’s Little Acre was judged obscene in a courtroom. The works of James M. Cain were challenged, as were those of Faulkner, until he won his 1950 Nobel Prize. Weybright also faced a continuing battle with certain authors over paperback covers. The editor’s views as to what would sell books frequently conflicted with the opinions of his authors. William Styron acquiesced to Weybright with some grace, but the cover conflict between NAL and James T. Farrell was bitter; the rift between NAL and J. D. Salinger over covers for The Catcher in the Rye and Nine Stories grew so acrimonious that both sides lost when Salinger severed his relationship with the company. NAL published the great—William Faulkner, Norman Mailer, J. D. Salinger - and the big money-makers - Erskine Caldwell, Ian Fleming, Mickey Spillane. This ideal arrangement enabled the innovative paperback publishing company to make a profit even as it made a gigantic cultural contribution.

Bonn, Thomas L.. Under Cover: An Illustrated History of American Mass Market Paperbacks. New York. 1982. Penguin Books. 144 pages. 0140060715

 Following the evolution of mass market publishing - cover to cover to cover - in this delightful celebration of paperback books. From the wonderfully lurid covers of the forties and fifties (featuring ‘fleshy female victims of mayhem and murder’) to today’s specialized genre styles, this fascinating history focuses on paperback covers - the crucial factor in catching the eye and selling the book. The splendid illustrations and the odd facts, colorful anecdotes, and insider’s insights make Under Cover a rare treat for pop-culture buffs, designers, collectors, and book people of all kinds.

Thomas L. Bonn, Librarian at the State University of New York, College at Cortland, is the author of Paperback Primer: A Guide for Collectors and Under Cover: An Illustrated History of American Mass Market Paperbacks.

Coser, Lewis A. / Kadushin, Charles / Powell, Walter W.. Books: The Culture & Commerce Of Publishing. New York. 1982. Basic Books. 411 pages. 0465007457

 In an industry perilously poised between the world of culture and the demands of commerce, who decides what America reads? Editors, media packagers, the heads of large corporations, or the intellectual community? This major work by a team of distinguished socio1ogists provides the first comprehensive examinations of book publishing in America - the people, the organizations, and the network of information and gossip - nor only for trade books and blockbusters, but for college texts, scholarly and monograph publishing, and university presses. Based on extensive field research in a variety of houses and on hundreds of interviews with editors, publishers, authors, agents, marketing and sales staffs, booksellers and book reviewers, BOOKS discusses the inside operation of publishing house and shows how key outsiders – literary agents, reviewers, and book chains as well as independent booksellers – can make or break a book’s (and an author’s) fortunes. The authors explode widely held publishing myths, explain editorial career paths, reveal the anomalous position of secretaries and assistants, and explore the role of women and their changing status. Special attention is paid to the deteriorating quality of author-publisher relations, and to whether authors can do anything about it. Presenting the big picture of the industry, BOOKS analyzes the mixed effects of the recent wave of publishing mergers. Though a historic al review suggests that publishers have always cared about the bottom line, the difference today is that editors no longer make all the key decisions. BOOKS is required reading for everyone interested in the book industry - as well as an exciting contribution to the sociology of ideas and organizations.  ‘A pioneering sociological panorama of American world of books, presented with unmistakable touch of its accomplished authors.’ - ROBERT K. MERTON, University Professor Emeritus and Special Service Professor, Department of Sociology, Columbia University. LEWIS A. COSER is Distinguished Professor of Sociology at SUNY, Stony Brook. He is the author of many hooks, including Men of ideas (1965), Greedy institutions (1974), and Masters of Sociological Thought (1979). CHARLES KADUSHIN- is Professor of Sociology at the Graduate Center, CUNY, and the author of several books, including The American Intellectual Elite (1974). WALTER W. POWELL is Assistant Profess or in the School of Organization and Management and Department of Sociology, Yale University, and the author of the forthcoming Getting into Print: The Decision Making Process in Scholarly Publishing (1982). He is also affiliated with Yale’s Institution for Social and Policy Studies, where he is studyi ng the financing of public television.

Davis, Kenneth C.. Two-Bit Culture: The Paperbacking Of America. Boston. 1984. Houghton Mifflin. 430 pages. 0395343984

 Dr. Spock, Betty Freidan, J. D. Salinger, Kurt Vonnegut, Jack Kerouac, Norman Mailer, John F. Kennedy, William Golding, D. H. Lawrence, J. R. R. Tolkien, Robert Rimmer, Kate Millett, Joseph Heller, Henry Miller - What is the single innovation in mass media that gave all these writers the ability to profoundly influence modern American culture? The paperback. Since their modest beginnings at the outset of World War II, inexpensive paperback books have grown into an eight-hundred-million-dollar-a-year industry and now overflow the country’s newsstands and bookshelves. From intellectually respectable classics such a Waiting for Godot, Lord of the Flies, and The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich to trendy novels like Peyton Place Love Story and Jonathan Livingston Seagull, paperbacks have had an unparalleled ability to shape the tastes and opinions of literate America. Kenneth C. Davis’s Two-Bit Culture chronicles the Paperback Revolution - the men and the women, the companies and the characters, that enabled American writers to find American readers by the millions.  Crammed with facts as well as gossip, Two-Bit Culture not only brings to life the history of the paperback but examines its present state and predicts where this fascinating business may be heading. ‘Must reading for anyone who wants to understand American publishing and popular culture since World War II. A sterling achievement.’ -  Marc Jaffe.

Schiffrin, Andre. The Business Of Books: How International Conglomerates Took Over Publishing & Changed The Way We Read. New York. 2000. Verso. 181 pages. 1859847633

 Postwar American publishing has been ruthlessly transformed since André Schiffrin joined its ranks in 1956. Gone is a plethora of small but prestigious houses that often put ideas before profit in their publishing decisions, sometimes even deliberately. Now six behemoths share 80% of the market and profit margin is all. André Schiffrin can write about these changes with authority because he witnessed them from inside a conglomerate, as head of Pantheon, co-founded by his father bought (and sold) by Random House. And he can write about them with candor because he is no longer on the inside, having quit corporate publishing in disgust to setup a flourishing independent house, the New Press. Schiffrin’s evident affection for his authors sparkles throughout a story woven around publishing the work of those such as Studs Terkel, Noam Chomsky, Gunnar Myrdal, George Kennan, Juliet Mitchell, R.D.Laing, Eric Hobsbawm and E.P. Thompson. Part-memoir, part-history, here is an account of the collapsing standards of contemporary publishing that is irascible, acute and passionate. An engaging counterpoint to recent, celebratory memoirs of the industry written by those with more stock options and fewer scruples than Schiffrin, The Business of Books warns of the danger to adventurous, intelligent publishing in the bullring of today’s marketplace. André Schiffrin was, for thirty years, Publisher at Pantheon. He is the Director of the New Press, which he founded in 1993. He contributes a regular column on publishing to the Chronicle of Higher Education.

Schreuders, Piet. Paperbacks, U. S. A.: A Graphic History, 1939-1959 (Translated from the Dutch by Josh Pachter). San Diego. 1981. Blue Dolphin Enterprises. 259 pages.

 In this informative and entertaining description of the first 20 years of paperback history, the emphasis is on the way these early books looked, and especially on their covers: who made them, how they were produced, and how they changed over two decades. Piet Schreuders, editor and designer of two popular Dutch magazines (Furore and the Poezenkrant), spent five years researching the roots of this cultural phenomenon and found, besides shameless plagiarism, amateurish drawings and commercially-bred bad taste, a wealth of sensitive, human, original and unique design and art.

Weybright, Victor. The Making of a Publisher: A Life in the 20th Century Book Revolution. New York. 1967. Reynal & Company. 360 pages.

 ‘When the story of The Paperback Revolution in America is one day told, it will be Victor Weybright’s THE MAKING OF A PUBLISHER that will serve as primary source material. Mr. Weybright was at the forefront of the rebellion to bring reading to everyone. And here, for the first time, performing as a Pepys of the paperback world, he opens locked doors and tells what went on inside the nobility, the pettiness, the triumphs, the failures, the Name publishers and authors one man’s truth about the movement to perpetuate the printed word against the forces of television and the machine. I recommend this memoir to everyone interested in books - publishers, editors, instructors, students - and Constant Readers.’ - Irving Wallace. This is the life story of a man who grew up in the Maryland countryside and whose zeal for learning and literature enabled him to become a leader in today’s book revolution. Although paperback books originally consisted largely of popular titles, he introduced books of genuine quality through The New American Library and changed the character and impact of low-priced publishing. One of the early influences in Mr. Weybright’s life was his experience at Hull House. During the war years he served in the American Embassy in London where he became well known in literary as well as political and social circles. After the war he returned to found his hugely successful publishing house. Throughout his life he has traveled widely and has come to know people of importance on both sides of the Atlantic who occupy a large part of this highly readable and always informative book. ‘I have read this with particular interest. Nobody has deserved better of the republic of letters than has Victor, a man who has combined a continuing sense of social responsibility with inventiveness in the book world, considerable daring in the discovery and promotion of young talent, and services to his government and to the Western world over and beyond the call of duty. I have read the book with a combination of interest and sorrow. The interest arises from the revelations of publishing history it contains nobody can ask a better introduction to the history of the paperback book revolution — and sorrow about its ending.’ - Howard Mumford Jones.



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Summer required reading for San Francisco High Schools


If you are looking for any of these books check our site!


Balboa High School


 Balboa High School Summer Reading Assignment


Balboa High School English Department, Mr. Gonzalez, Department Head, room 328


Each year, Balboa’s students are required to read two works of literature over the summer for their English class the following year. You are to choose ONE book from the grade-level lists below. Then, choose ONE book on your own. This book must appropriate for school, interesting to you, and at your reading skill level. You may choose your second book from the grade-level list if you wish.


Grade-level reading lists:


Incoming 9th graders / OPTIONAL - Incoming 10th graders


Cry the Beloved Country - Paton

Barrio Boy - Galarza

The Odyssey - Homer

Black Boy - Wright

When the Rainbow Goddess Wept - Brainard

Bless Me, Ultima - Anaya

The Aeneid - Virgil

China Boy - Lee

Alice in Wonderland - Carroll

Fallen Angels - Myers

Arrow of God - Achebe

A Gathering of Old Men - Gaines

Aura - Fuentes

The Joy Luck Club - Tan

Dance Hall of the Dead - Hillerman

Julius Caesar - Shakespeare

The Fellowship of the Ring - Tolkien

The Kitchen God’s Wife - Tan

Gulliver’s Travels - Swift

No-no Boy - Okada

The Hobbit - Tolkien

The Piano Lesson - Wilson

The Human Comedy - Saroyan

Skin Deep - Garcia

The Iliad - Homer

Typical American - Jen

The King Must Die - Renault

Wooden Fish Songs - McCunn

Kitchen - Yoshimoto

A Yellow Raft in Blue Water - Dorris

Nectar in a Sieve - Markandaya

China Men - Kingston

The Once and Future King - White

Fifth Chinese Daughter - Wong

A Single Pebble - Hersey

Go Tell it on the Mountain - Baldwin

Walkabout - Marshall

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings - Angelou

Living Up the Street - Soto


11th and 12th grade


Balboa High School English Department, Mr. Gonzalez, Department Head, room 328


Animal Dreams - Kingsolver

Beloved - Morrison

The Bluest Eye - Morrison

Beowulf - Anonymous

Hiroshima - Hersey

Brave New World - Huxley

House Made of Dawn - Momaday

Brothers Karamazov - Dostoyevsky

Lakota Woman - Crow Dog

Don Quixote - Cervantes

Of Mice and Men - Steinbeck

Siddhartha - Hesse

The Scarlet Letter - Hawthorne

Love in the Time of Cholera - Marquez

Self-Reliance - Emerson

100 Years of Solitude - Marquez

Snow Falling on Cedars - Guterson

A Tale of Two Cities - Dickens

To Kill a Mockingbird - Lee

A Room with a View - Forster

Walden - Thoreau

As You Like It - Shakespeare

Billy Budd - Melville

Antony and Cleopatra - Shakespeare

Catch-22 - Heller

Crime and Punishment - Dostoyevsky

Farewell to Arms - Hemingway

Dr. Zhivago - Pasternak

As I Lay Dying - Faulkner

Henry IV, part 1 & Henry IV, part 2 - Shakespeare

Cannery Row - Steinbeck

King Lear - Shakespeare

The Good Earth - Buck

Bleak House - Dickens

Invisible Man - Ellison

Madame Bovary - Flaubert

My Antonia - Cather

The Cherry Orchard - Chekhov

Native Son - Wright

The Merchant of Venice - Shakespeare

The Natural - Malamud

Oliver Twist - Dickens

Reservation Blues - Alexie

The Plague - Camus

The Sea Wolf - London

A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man - Joyce

The Sound and the Fury - Faulkner

Pride and Prejudice - Austen

Tortilla Flat Steinbeck

Richard III - Shakespeare

The Trial - Kafka

War and Peace - Tolstoy




Lowell High School


9th grade


Otsuka, Julie - When the Emperor was Divine

Rushdie, Salman - Haroun and the Sea of Stories


Tenth Grade


Kingsolver, Barbara - Bean Trees

McBride, James - The Color of Water


Tenth Grade Honors


Eugenides,Jeffrey -Middlesex

Russell, Karen - Swamplandia



Eleventh/Twelfth Grade Electives


Eggers, Dave - Zeitoun

Lee, Jennifer 8 - Fortune Cookie Chronicles


AP 74  (Ritter) Eleventh grade)


McCarthy, Cormac - The Road

Homer - The Iliad (Robert Fagel’s translation)



AP 75 (Moffitt and Yuan) (Eleventh grade)


Diaz, Junot - The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao

Lee, Chang-Rae - Native Speaker


AP 80 (Carney) (Twelfth grade)


Irving, John - A Prayer for Owen Meany

Sophocles - Oedipus Rex (Oedipus the King)


AP 83 (Recht) (Twelfth grade)


Homer - The Iliad (Robert Fagel’s translation)

Patchett, Ann - Bel Canto




Abraham Lincoln High School


Abraham Lincoln High School Summer Reading Assignments For Students Entering an English Class in August 2012


SUMMER READING: The Lincoln High School English teachers expect all students to read one of the novels listed below over the summer. Select a novel for the grade level you are entering. These books are readily available in bookstores and libraries. Please make sure your parent/guardian approves of your choice. What does the “challenge” number mean? The “challenge” level is the Accelerated Reader scoring of the book’s reading level. It rates the vocabulary and syntax. The rating does not relate to the amount of pages or the content.


Entering 12th Grade European


 Autobiography of a Face – Grealy:  7.4

 Life of Pi – Martel: 7.2

 Never Let Me Go – Ishiguro: 6.0

 Bone - Fae Myenne Ng: : 6.0

 Johnny Got His Gun – Trumbo: 5.9



Entering 11th Grade American



Slaughterhouse Five – Vonnegut: 6


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime – Haddon: 5.4


Chinese Playground – Lee: 5.0


For Whom The Bell Tolls – Hemingway: 5.8


Room -  Donoghue: 5.5



Entering 10th Grade Ethnic Literature



Monster – Myers: 5.1


Chinese Cinderella – Mah: 5.7


The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian – Alexie: 5.5


Feed – Anderson: 5.6


The Gunslinger – King: 5.3



Entering 9th Grade World Literature


Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland - Carroll: 5.7


The Hobbit – Tolkien: 6.6


A Wrinkle in Time - L’Engle: 4.7


The Book Thief – Zusak: 5.1


The Little Prince - Saint-Exupery: 5.0



Assignment: Be prepared for some evaluation of your summer reading when you return to school. We suggest you take some notes while reading your book.


What should I take notes on?


1. Significant passages: Write down a passage (a few sentences or a paragraph) that helps you understand the book, or that shows the author’s writing style. The passage might give you insight into a character, a conflict, or a theme of the novel. Write the passage down word for word with the page number. Then, write a few sentences explaining why you think the passage is important.


2. Plot: Write a summary of the book you read.


3. Setting: What are the important locations and times?


4. Characterization: List all the characters and describe their personalities. What does the narrator say about the characters? What do characters say about each other? What does each character say and do that helps you understand who they are?


5. Conflicts: external conflicts: What are the problems the characters have outside of themselves? Examples of external conflicts are: a fistfight between characters, or struggling against an outside force like poverty. Internal conflicts: What are the conflicts the characters face within themselves? An example of an internal conflict: struggling to make a decision or choice.


6. Themes: What are the ideas or messages the plot, setting, characters, and conflicts show? Examples of themes are: money cannot buy happiness, compassion benefits people more than selfishness, or death is inevitable.


Ninth Grade World Literature:


Ninth graders read a wide range of literature including but not limited to:


To Kill A Mockingbird, The Odyssey, Romeo and Juliet, Mythology and You, Lord of the Flies and Animal Farm.


We introduce critical reading skills such as annotation, vocabulary development, recognition of literary devices, and analysis of writing style for theme and tone. The basic structure of a paragraph and an essay are taught, and students are expected to learn how to write a personal narrative essay and an analytical, literature based essay. Grammar, usage and mechanics are taught through revision of student writing and direct instruction. Some of the language concepts that we emphasize in ninth grade are: the parts of speech, the rules of punctuation, subject-verb agreement, comma splices and the parts of a sentence.


Tenth Grade Ethnic Literature:


Tenth graders read a wide range of literature including but not limited to:


The Joy Luck Club, Othello, Maus, The Color of Water, Raisin in the Sun, The Jungle, Yellow Raft In Blue Water and Bless Me Ultima.


We continue to build upon critical reading skills such as annotation, recognition of literary devices, vocabulary development, and an analysis of writing style for theme, tone, characterization and conflict. Students are expected to write more complex and developed analytical, literature-based essays, as well as expository essays. MLA guidelines are introduced for citation and formatting. Grammar, usage and mechanics are taught through revision of student writing and direct instruction. Some of the language concepts that we emphasize in tenth grade are: syntactical structures, parallel structure, subject-verb agreement, the parts of speech (in more depth), clauses, and pronoun antecedent agreement.


Eleventh Grade American Literature:


Eleventh graders read a wide range of literature including but not limited to:


The Crucible, The Great Gatsby, Of Mice and Men, The Grapes of Wrath, Sula, and The Catcher in the Rye.


We continue to build upon critical reading skills such as annotation, close reading, recognition of literary devices, vocabulary development, and an analysis of writing style for theme, tone, characterization, conflict, purpose, context, and audience. Students are expected to write more complex and developed analytical, literature-based essays, expository essays and persuasive essays. MLA guidelines are reinforced for citation and formatting. Grammar, usage and mechanics are taught through revision of student writing and direct instruction. Ninth and tenth grade grammar and usage concepts are reviewed. In addition, new concepts such as active versus passive voice and syntactical variety in student writing are introduced.


Twelfth Grade British Literature:



Twelfth graders read a wide range of literature including but not limited to:


Frankenstein, Wuthering Heights, Antigone, Plato’s Allegory of the Cave, Hamlet, Macbeth, Crime and Punishment and The Stranger.


We continue to build upon critical reading skills such as annotation, close reading, recognition of literary devices, vocabulary development, and an analysis of writing style for theme, tone, characterization, conflict, purpose, context, and audience. Students are expected to write more complex and developed analytical, literature-based essays, expository essays and persuasive essays. Students are also expected to write a personal statement in preparation for college applications. MLA guidelines are reinforced for citation and formatting. Grammar, usage and mechanics are taught through revision of student writing and direct instruction. All grammar and usage concepts are reviewed and assessed.


Tenth Grade Accelerated English:

10th Grade Accelerated English is designed to introduce themes of both American and world literature at an advanced level. The class will provide a forum for students interested in developing reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills with the expectations of a first-year university course in mind. The focus of the class is the ongoing discussion of the themes and structures of social commentary as it is found and expressed in literature. This class will be rigorous and fast-paced, and students will be expected to accurately complete regular reading comprehension, creative writing, grammar, and vocabulary assignments including test preparation for the English AP exam, speeches, and essays. Please note: while UC/CSU may not recognize additional course credit for 9th or 10th accelerated classes on transcripts, accelerated courses are often acknowledged by other colleges.


Eleventh Grade Honors American Literature:


This course uses canonical American texts to chronologically explore the development of America as a nation, an identity and an idea. We investigate themes such as: the importance of self-reliance, action versus inaction, and having the courage of one’s convictions. Semester one follows early American history and we read authors such as Miller, Emerson, Jefferson, Thoreau and Twain. In semester two, American issues of modernity such as alienation versus connection, industrialization, greed, and compassion are explored through authors such as Steinbeck, Fitzgerald, and Salinger. We learn how to read texts not just for meaning, but to deconstruct how a text creates meaning through stylistic choices and rhetoric. Additionally, students will begin to purposefully utilize elevated stylistic devices for effect in their own writing. The Language and Composition AP exam is optional with this course.


Twelfth Grade AP English Literature:


In this course, students will read a number of classic works reflective of the European and American Literature canon. Shakespeare, Dostoyevsky, Austen, Ellison and other writers and poets offer striking insights into such universal themes as identity, alienation, power, and community. We will explore the ways that the art and literature in Europe and the United States were both reflective and prophetic about the way people saw and understood the world in which they lived. We will try to use these texts as lenses through which we can make sense of the United States at the beginning of a new millennium and in the middle of our postmodern age (the proliferation of technology, consumerism, psychoanalysis, 9/11, globalization). Concurrently, students will learn to move beyond simple comprehension of a text to an understanding of writing as craft (analyzing structure, style and themes), and will incorporate these techniques into their own expository and interpretative essays. This course meets all the curricular requirements as described in the AP English Course Description guide and has been approved by the Advanced Placement College Board.




George Washington High School


 George Washington High School

2012 Summer Reading List


All Washington High School students are asked to complete a summer reading assignment.  How you will be assessed is at the discretion of next year’s English teacher; assessment may come in the form of a multiple choice or true/false quiz, short answer questions, journal assignment, and/or an essay. 


Regular studentschoose ONE novel from the relevant grade-level list. Although regular students are not required to do the journal assignment, most English teachers will give extra credit if you decide to do it.  Honors and AP students must read TWO novels and they must complete the journal assignment for each book described on the backside of this handout.


Class of 2015—Current Freshmen or Rising Sophomores


  • Like Water for Chocolate(1989) by Laura Esquivel. The youngest daughter of a well-born Mexican rancher, when Tita falls in love her mother quickly attempts to end the liaison.
  • Fifth Chinese Daughter(1950) by Jade Snow Wong. Jade Snow Wong becomes determined to go to college and gain more independence than she has been taught to expect.
  • Tears of a Tiger(1996) by Sharon Draper.  Andy, a young black man, cannot bear his guilt or reach out for help after killing his friend in a drunk-driving accident.
  • The Big Thirst(2011) by Charles Fishman. This non-fiction book looks at the growing crisis of the availability of safe and plentiful drinking water, which was once cheap but is becoming a scarce and priceless resource.
  • Rule of the Bone(1995) by Russell Banks. A homeless, teenage dropout selling small-load boom to the locals. A modern working class Holden Caulfield from Catcher in the Rye.


Class of 2014—Current Sophomores or Rising Juniors

  • A Tree Grows in Brooklyn(1943) by Betty Smith. The young, sensitive, and idealistic Francie Nolan falls in love.  Set if the poverty-stricken tenement district for new immigrants in the Brooklyn slums.  The novel spans the life of Francie from age 11 to 17.
  • The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother(1996) by James McBride.

After becoming pregnant by her black boyfriend, Ruth’s immigrant, Polish, Jewish (and very prejudiced) family disowns her. She moves to Harlem, meets another man, falls in love, marries, and has 8 children.

  • This Boy’s Life(1989) by Tobias Wolff.  Wolff recounts his childhood, adolescence, and tumultuous life growing up with his mother and stepfather.
  • In Cold Blood (1966) by Truman Copote.  In journalistic style, this non-fiction novel details the brutal 1959 murders of a wealthy family in the rural, small town of Holcomb, Kansas.
  • Their Eyes Were Watching God(1937) by Zora Neale Hurston. A young, African-American, teenager from the South, Janie develops from an innocent young girl to a confident, assertive, wise woman.  Written in the rich vernacular of Black English.


Class of 2013—Current Juniors or Rising Seniors

  • All Quiet on the Western Front(1929) by Erich M. Remarque.  Paul Baumer, a young man of nineteen, fights in the German army on the French front in World War I.  After ten weeks of strenuous training and the unimaginable brutality of life on the front, he no longer believes that war is glorious or honorable; instead, he lives in constant physical terror.
  • Love in the Time of Cholera(1985) by Gabriel Garcia Marquez.  Although Fermina may think she has erased Florentino from her memory, he has not stopped thinking of her long after their love affair ends.  Can they rekindle their romance at 70?
  • Emma(1815) by Jane Austen.  Emma, described by the author as handsome, clever, and rich, is also a spoiled brat who meddles in the lives of others while trying to play matchmaker.
  • Pride and Prejudice(1813) by Jane Austen. Elizabeth, the second eldest of five and daughter of a landed English gentleman, navigates the perils of manners, love, and marriage in the aristocratic society of the early 1800s.
  • Portrait of a Lady(1881) by Henry James.  Inheriting a substantial amount of money, Isabel Archer, a spirited young American, falls prey to two scheming expatriates.  Largely set in Europe, the novel explores the Old and New World, freedom, responsibility, and sexuality.


Reading Journal Assignment


Honors and AP is designed to challenge students beyond basic grade-level standards. Hence, you are required to read TWO of the titles listed in your grade-level, and to keep a reading journal.* When you return to school in the Fall, you will turn in your reading journal, and you will be given an assessment on the two books you have read.


[Note:  Although the journal is not required of regular students, most teachers will acknowledge your work and give extra credit should you decide to do the journal assignment.]



 This journal assignment is fostered to develop the analytical, reading, and writing skills you will need for college as well as for life in general.  The stronger a reader and writer you are, the better prepared you will be to pursue, to defend, and to voice your own beliefs, and the better prepared you will be to consider critically those of others. Moreover, reading quality literature allows for the exploration of various themes, perspectives, and experiences, and allows for a clearer sense of what constitutes good writing and good thinking.  For these reasons, we created the summer reading program to foster no only a milieu for quality reading over the summer months, but also a greater appreciation for the value of reading itself. 



Reading Journal:

Record your questions, observations, and interpretations as you read each novel.  Your comments should always be specific to the work.  That is, your journal is not a place for you to explore your own personal life (i.e. no autobiographical writing).  However, you will use your own experiences and collected knowledge to help you arrive at an understanding of the various elements in a work of literature.  Strong readers do this automatically, for this active reading allows you to review the work’s literal aspects (e.g. biographical facts on the author; historical facts pertinent to the work; lists of characters; setting; plot summary) as well as its more complex and figurative elements (e.g. themes; reasons for a character’s behavior, thoughts, and feelings; meaning of symbols and metaphors; irony; paradox; conflict; analytical questions and responses.)


Remember that reviewing the literal aspects of the novel is only to help you arrive at a more profound understanding of the various complex, figurative elements of the work.  Hence, your reading journal should be much less literal review, and much more interpretive reflection supported by specifics from the novel.  We study the works of these authors because they brilliantly and eloquently say what few of us have the talent to! Hence, give yourself the time to understand and to appreciate their artistry.  Otherwise, you will most likely interpret the work superficially.



Your journal should reflect the ongoing dialogue you have with your book.  Although you should get into the habit of writing every time you read, that is not necessary.  As a general rule of thumb, divide your novel into 15-20 sections.  Record a page or two of writing for each section.  Sprinkle your writing with specific references from the novels and remember to jot the page number for future reference.  Good analytical writing is peppered with quotes from the text.  Date your journal every time you write.


*Once the semester begins, you may NOT transfer out of your registered class simply because you did not do the reading assignment.




School of the Arts (SOTA)


 9th Grade English (World Literature)

 Required Summer Reading for Students Entering This Class

 All students must read J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit as well as one of the books listed below. The Hobbit will form the course’s first unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. For each book you read, do the At-Home Summer Reading Assignment described on the other side of this sheet.

 These assignments will be collected on the first day of class, but you will be able to use them during the first week of school to write an in-class essay based on your summer reading.


Maya Angelou I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings

Olivia Butler Parable of the Sower

Orson Scott Card Ender's Game

Clifford Chase, ed. Queer Thirteen

Daphne du Maurier Rebecca

Laura Esquivel Like Water for Chocolate

Ernesto Galarza Barrio Boy

Robert Heinlein Stranger in a Strange Land

John Hersey A Single Pebble

Joy Kogawa Obasan

Ursula LeGuin Wizard of Earthsea

Mary Renault The King Must Die

Molyda Szymusiak The Stones Cry Out: A Cambodian Childhood

Evelyn Waugh The Loved One

T.H. White The Sword in the Stone

Banana Yoshimoto Kitchen


9th Grade Honors English (World Literature)

 Required Summer Reading for Students Admitted to This Class

 All students must read both George Orwell’s Animal Farm AND Karl Marx’s Communist Manifesto as well as one of the books listed below. Animal Farm and the Communist Manifesto will form the course’s first unit of study, so it is imperative that you read these books with care. For Animal Farm and your book of choice, do the At-Home Summer Reading Assignment described on page two of this handout. The Communist Manifesto assignment is given below. All these assignments will be collected on the first day of class, but you will be able to use them during the first week of school to write an in-class essay based on your summer reading.


 George Bernard Shaw Arms and the Man AND The Devil’s Disciple

William Shakespeare Twelfth Night AND Midsummer Night’s Dream

John Millington Synge The Playboy of the Western World AND Brian Friel,


Oscar Wilde The Importance of Being Earnest AND Lady Windermere’s Fan


 Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice

Octavia Butler Parable of the Sower OR Dawn

Mai-Lee Chai My Lucky Face.

Charles Dickens David Copperfield

Alexandre Dumas The Three Musketeers OR The Count of Monte Cristo

Graham Greene The Quiet American

Dashiell Hammett The Glass Key

Ursula LeGuin The Left Hand of Darkness

Gabriel Garcia Marquez One Hundred Years of Solitude OR Of Love and Other Demons

Kyoto Mori Shizuko’s Daughter

George Orwell Down and Out in Paris and London

Manuel Puig Betrayed by Rita Hayworth

Tom Robbins Jitterbug Perfume

Marilyn Robinson Housekeeping

Robert Louis Stevenson Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde AND Herman Melville, Typee

Nathaniel West The Day of the Locust


 10th Grade English 2012-2013

 Required Summer Reading

 All students must read Paul Coehlho’s The Alchemist as well as one of the books listed below. The Alchemist will form the course’s first unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in both books and make frequent, copious marginal notes in The Alchemist as well as you book of choice. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.


Amy Tan The Kitchen God's Wife

Monica Ital Sone Nisei Daughter

Fae Myenne Ng Bone

Nien Cheng Life and Death in Shanghai

Loung Ung First They Killed My Father

John Elray Khalifah: A Novel of Conquest and Personal Triumph

James McBride The Color of Water

John Griffin Black Like Me

Mark Mathabane Kaffir Boy

Amiri Baraka The Dutchman AND The Slave (two plays—read both)

Charles Johnson The Middle Passage

Isabel Allende The Infinite Plan

Julia Alvarez How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accents

Sandra Cisneros Caramelo

Loida Perez Geographies of Home

Mario Vargas Llosa Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter

Cristina Garcia The Aguero Sisters

Chaim Potok My Name is Asher Lev

Barbara Kingsolver Pigs in Heaven

Susan Power The Grass Dancer

Louise Erdrich Love Medicine

Bharati Mukerjee Desirable Daughters


 10th Grade Honors English 2012-2013

 Required Summer Reading

 All students must read Jesmyn Ward’s Salvage the Bones as well as one of the books listed below. Salvage the Bones will form the course’s first unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages and make frequent, copious marginal notes in Salvage the Bones as well as you book of choice. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


Nadine Gordimer Burger’s Daughter (South Africa)

Gish Jen Typical American (Japan)

Arundhati Roy The God of Small Things (India)

Jumpta Lahiri The Namesake (India)

Leon Uris The Haj (Middle East)

Ernest Gaines A Lesson Before Dying (African American)

James Baldwin Another Country (African American)

Keri Hulme The Bone People (Maori—New Zealand)

Gabriel Garcia Marquez Love in the Time of Cholera (South America)

Sherman Alexie Reservation Blues (Native American)

Louise Erdrich Love Medicine (Native American)

Kalid Hosseini Kite Runner (Afghanistan)

Lisa See Snow Flower and the Secret Fan (China)

Jan Wong Red China Blues (China)

Orhan Pamuk The White Castle (Turkey)

Edwidge Danticat Breath, Eyes, Memory (Haiti)


 11th Grade English

 Required Summer Reading 2012-13

 All students must read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby as well as one of the books listed below. The Great Gatsby will form the course’s first major unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. If possible, you should buy both books. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in both books and make frequent, copious marginal notes. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


Henry James Daisy Miller

Willa Cather Death Comes for the Archbishop

Ernest Gaines The Autobiography of Miss Jane Pittman

Joseph Heller Catch 22

Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms

Upton Sinclair The Jungle

Kurt Vonnegut Slaughterhouse Five OR Mother Night

Tom Wolfe Look Homeward, Angel

Mark Twain Huckleberry Finn

Pearl Buck The Good Earth

Sinclair Lewis Babbitt OR Main Street

Raymond Chandler The Big Sleep and Farewell My Lovely

Dashiell Hammett The Dain Curse OR The Maltese Falcon

Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire AND Glass Menagerie (read both)

Mario Vargas Llosa Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter

Robert Kaplan Warrior Politics: Why Leadership Demands a pagan Ethos OR The Arabists: The Romance of an

American Elite

Franklin Foer How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization

Jonathan Kozol Savage Inequities

Somerset Maugham The Painted Veil

Charlotte Bronte Jane Eyre

Giuseppe di Lampedusa The Leopard

Matthew B. Crawford Shop Class as Soulcraft: An Inquiry Into the Value of Work


 11th Grade Honors English (American Literature)

 Required Summer Reading 2012-13

 All students must read Jack Kerouac’s On the Road as well as one of the books listed below. On the Road will form the course’s first major unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. If possible, you

should buy both books. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in both books and make frequent, copious marginal notes. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


 Edward Abbey The Monkey Wrench Gang

Sherman Alexie Reservation Blues

James Baldwin Another Country

Russell Banks Rule of the Bone OR Cloudsplitter

Saul Bellow Henderson the Rain King

Pearl Buck The Good Earth

Olive Burns Cold Sassy Tree

Truman Capote In Cold Blood

Nella Carsen Quicksand

Willa Cather The Professor’s House OR My Antonia

Jeff Chang Can’t Stop, Won’t Stop: A History of Hip-Hop

E.L. Doctorow Ragtime OR The March

Dave Eggers A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius

William Faulkner Sanctuary

Alex Haley Roots OR The Autobiography of Malcolm X

Zora Neale Hurston Their Eyes Were Watching God

Jonathan Kozol Savage Inequities

Carson McCullers The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

Claude McKay Banana Bottom OR Home to Harlem

Arthur Miller Death of a Salesman AND All My Sons (read both)

Tim O'Brien The Things They Carried OR Going After Cacciato (both)

Tom Robbins Even Cowgirls Get the Blues OR Skinny Legs and All

Jim Thompson The Killer Inside Me AND The Grifters (read both)

Jean Toomer Cane

Kurt Vonnegut Mother Night OR The Sirens of Titan

Dorothy West The Wedding

Thornton Wilder Skin of Our Teeth AND Our Town (read both)

Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire AND Glass Menagerie (both)

August Wilson Fences AND The Piano Lesson (read both)

Tom Wolfe Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test


11th Grade AP Language and Composition

 Required Summer Reading 2012-13

 All students must read John Steinbeck’s East of Eden as well as one of the books listed below. East of Eden will form the course’s first major unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. If possible, you should buy both books. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in both books and make frequent, copious marginal notes. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


Feel like overachieving? Better yet, just like to read? Reading all or any of the books in this box will help you out in this course second semester


Henry James The Americans /Washington Square/ Daisy Miller

F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby

Vladimir Nabokov Lolita/ Invitation to a Beheading

Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice

Sinclair Lewis Babbitt OR Main Street

Carson McCullers The Heart is a Lonely Hunter

Mike Rose Lives on the Boundary

Kurt Vonnegut Mother Night OR The Sirens of Titan

Edith Wharton The House of Mirth

Tennessee Williams A Streetcar Named Desire AND Glass Menagerie (read both)

August Wilson Fences AND The Piano Lesson (read both)

Robert Kaplan Warrior Politics: Why Leadership Demands a pagan Ethos OR The Arabists: The Romance of an

American Elite

Martin Meredith The Fate of Africa: A History of Fifty Years of Independence

Dorothy Sayers Whose Body? OR Busman’s Honeymoon

Mario Vargas Llosa Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter

Franklin Foer How Soccer Explains the World: An Unlikely Theory of Globalization

Malcom Gladwell The Tipping Point: How Little Things can Make a Big Difference OR Blink

Raymond Chandler The Big Sleep and Farewell My Lovely

Dashiell Hammett The Dain Curse OR The Maltese Falcon

James Baldwin Another Country AND Blues for Mister Charlie (read both)

Pearl Buck The Good Earth

Willa Cather The Professor’s House

Michael Herr Dispatches

Ernest Hemingway The Sun Also Rises


 12th Grade English (English/European Literature)


Required Summer Reading for Students Entering This Class

 All students must read Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein as well as one of the books listed below. Frankenstein will form the course’s first major unit of study, so it is imperative that you read this book with care. If possible, you should buy both books. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in both books and make frequent, copious marginal notes. Look for important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


Julia Alvarez In the Time of Butterflies

Albert Camus The Fall OR The Plague

Anton Chekhov Uncle Vanya AND The Cherry Orchard (read both)

J.M. Coetzee Disgrace OR Waiting for the Barbarians

Anita Desai The Clear Light of Day

Charles Dickens Any Dickens EXCEPT Tale of Two Cities or Great


Arthur Conan Doyle Hound of the Baskervilles AND A Study in Scarlet (both)

John Gardiner Grendel

F. Scott Fitzgerald Tender is the Night

Graham Greene The Power and the Glory OR Brighton Rock OR Our Man

in Havana

C.S. Forester The African Queen

Jerzy Kozinsky Being There

Federigo Garcia Lorca Three Plays (Blood Wedding, the House of Bernarda Alba,

and Yerma--choose any two of these plays)

Somerset Maugham The Razor's Edge

Jean-Baptiste Moliere Tartuffe AND The Miser (two plays—read both)

Vladimir Nabokov Pnin

William Shakespeare As You Like It AND Two Gentlemen of Verona (read both)

Alexander Solzhenitsyn One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich


 12th Grade AP English Literature

 Required Summer Reading 2012-13

 All students must read Genesis, Exodus, Matthew, and John from the King James version of the Bible as well as Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein AND Milan Kundera’s The Unbearable Lightness of Being. These three works will form the course’s first major unit of study, so it is imperative that you read and annotate them with care and (complete the attached biblical allusions assignment.) In addition, you should, if possible, buy all three books you choose from the following lists. In preparation for the essay you will write during the first week of school, you must underline important and interesting passages in all the reading selections and make frequent, copious marginal notes. Look for the important social and historical ideas and connections as well as how the author uses language to develop theme, character, and plot. Use large post-it notes for anything you cannot fit into the margins of the book. (If you must get the book from a library, use numerous post-it-notes for all your annotations and comments.)


 AP English Literature: Biblical Allusions Summer

 Reading Assignment Test

 Research and define the following allusions. You must use your King James Bible and discover the meanings in context; then you may do additional research on the internet. Your definitions must include context: who said or did it, what was the event, where did it take place and why was it important. Type your responses, and include title, book name, and verse/chapter numbers.


1.) “The Creation” Genesis 1

“The Fall” Genesis 3

“The Flood” Genesis 6

The Mark of Cain Genesis 4-6

The Tower of Babel Genesis 11:1-9

Sodom and Gomorrah Genesis 18

Lot and his wife Genesis 19

The Ten Commandments Exodus 20:1-17

David and Goliath I Samuel 17

8.) The Nativity Matthew 1, Luke 2

9.) The Sermon on the Mount Matthew 5:3 - 7:27, Luke 6:17-49

10.) Lazarus John 11:1-12:11

11.) The Last Supper Mark 14, John 13

12.) The Garden of Gethsemane Matthew 26

13.) The Betrayal Matthew 25, 26

14.) “The Denial” Matthew 26, Mark 14, Luke 22, John 18

15.) Thirty pieces of silver Matthew 26, 27; Mark 14, Luke 22, John 13, 18

16.) Golgotha Matthew 27:33, Mark 15:22, John 19:17

17.) The Crucifixion Matthew 27, Mark 15, Luke 23, John 19

18.) The Resurrection Luke 24; John 20, 21

19.) The Holy Spirit Acts 1, 2




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