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ART STORIA | Literary Arts 

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SERIES 1
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BOOK 1:

WE

by Yevgeny Zamyatin, Translated by Gregory Ziloboorg, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Igor Goryunov

'WE' is a Dystopian novel by Soviet dissident Yevgeny Zamyatin. It was written between 1920–1921, right after the Russian Revolution. The themes and ideals expressed in 'WE' offer a powerfully inventive vision of the future that later heavily influenced Aldous Huxley’s 'Brave New World' and George Orwell’s '1984'. It was Zamyatin’s book that others borrowed from and helped give birth to a distinctive Dystopian fictive genre. His work gave way to ideas of futurism and post-apocalyptic storytelling. At the core of such like-minded stories, 'WE’s principles are still predominant in today’s popular books, film, and television. The story describes a world of harmony and conformity within a united totalitarian state. The reader finds a uniform society where individuality is viewed as a dysfunction and where thinking for oneself can be the most dangerous thing. Within a glass-enclosed city ruled by the all-powerful ‘Benefactor', the citizens of OneState live out their lives devoid of passion and creativity - until the book’s main character, D-503, a mathematician who dreams in numbers, makes a discovery; he learns he has an individual soul. Set in the 26th-century, 'WE' is one of the most powerful Dystopias of all time and has been perceived as a general warning about totalitarianism, the dangers of reducing people to just numbers and conditioning them inside a standard system of conformity.

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BOOK 2:

The Murders in the Rue Morgue

by Edgar Allan Poe, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Rita Yuwei Li

In 1841, Edgar Allan Poe invented the genre of detective fiction when he brought forth from his pen, a young, eccentric man he named Detective C. Auguste Dupin. Intelligent detective sleuthing made its debut into the realm of literature, and together with his macabre prose and the application of a reasoning mind to solve crime, these tales brought Poe fame and fortune. Poe’s literary invention and collection of short mysteries were instrumental in the creation of other famed fictional geniuses, including the notorious Sherlock Holmes. Although lesser known than the detective tales of the modern era, the flagship Dupin Stories are engaging and exhilarating must-read mysteries. These tales are the original reference point for the mystery-solving phenom that has become widespread in literary and popular culture. Edgar Allan Poe is a foundational figure of American literary studies across the educational sphere, and instrumental in the development of 19th-century criminology that has even made its way onto movie and television screens. This collection of three stories written between 1841 - 1844, "The Murders in the Rue Morgue," "The Murder of Marie Roget" and "The Purloined Letter”, are not easily found elsewhere in one edition. 

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BOOK 3:

The Vampyre & Other Tales: The Original Vampire Stories

by John Polidori, Joesph Le Fanu & Robert Louis Stevenson, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Ørjan Anmo Moen

The literary vampire first appeared in 18th-century poetry before becoming one of the mainstay figures of gothic fiction. The notion of such lore was originally seen in literature with the publication of John William Polidori’s The Vampyre in 1819. Polidori’s work of fiction romanticized the vampire for the first time and went on to inspire many other writers after the fact. Inside this book, you will find other early vampire tales written long before the now-infamous Dracula by Bram Stoker. Stoker borrowed many themes and elements from these collected short stories himself, as have other literary artists over time. This edition includes The Vampyre by Polidori, along with Carmilla by J. Le Fanu and Robert Louis Stevenson’s Olalla. These three featured short stories have all been heavily influential on the genre. 

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BOOK 4:

Frankenstein; or The Modern Prometheus

by Mary Shelley, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Introduction by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Julia Lillard

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus is an 1818 novel written by English author Mary Shelley (1797–1851) that tells the story of Victor Frankenstein, a young scientist who creates a hideous sapient creature in an unorthodox scientific experiment. In an attempt to create the perfect new being, scientist Victor Frankenstein secretly assembles a collection of body parts and activates it with an electrical charge. The result is horrifying – even to his maker – and is never named. Widely regarded as the first proper science-fiction novel, Frankenstein provided the inspiration for a whole genre of horror stories and, later, films. 

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BOOK 5

Men Like Gods

by H. G. Wells, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Trash Riot

Men Like Gods is set in 1921 and was published in 1923. It is part of a subgenre we do not see as much of in recent fiction. It is a utopian science fiction story. Today we have become predominantly familiar with this particular subgenre's other side, the dystopian science fiction. Dystopia offers audiences more shock value to draw attention, but we can look at the former as the older, wiser, and more optimistic version. The essential difference between utopian and dystopian fiction is the different perceptions of humanity. Men Like Gods is an excellent example of this and it is referred to by its author, English writer H. G. Wells, as a "scientific fantasy” novel. The story features a utopia located in a parallel universe. and was conceived in the aftermath of World War I, and it reflects the failings of human nature yet offers hope for the future, when men and women may live like gods. 

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BOOK 6:

A Princess of Mars

by Edgar Rice Burroughs, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Julia Lillard

A Princess of Mars ART STORIA | Literary Classics edition (Annotated) - A Princess of Mars is a science fantasy by American writer Edgar Rice Burroughs. It was first serialized in All-Story Magazine from February–July, 1912. The story is full of swordplay and daring feats, the novel is considered a classic example of 20th-century pulp fiction. It is also a seminal work of the planetary romance sub-genre of science fantasy that became incredibly popular in the decades following its publication. In the novel’s early chapters it also contains elements of the Western. The story is set on Mars, and imagined as a dying planet with a harsh desert environment. This vision of Mars was based on the work of the astronomer Percival Lowell, whose ideas were popularized in the late 19th and early 20th-century. It has inspired a number of well-known 20th-century science fiction writers, including Ray Bradbury, Arthur C. Clarke, and Robert A. Heinlein.The series was also inspirational to many scientists in the fields of space exploration and the search for extraterrestrial life, including Carl Sagan, who had read A Princess of Mars as a child.

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BOOK 7:

Lost Horizon

by James Hilton, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Denise K. McTighe

‘Lost Horizon’ was first published in 1933 by English writer James Hilton. The book is best remembered as the origin of Shangri-La, a fictional utopian lamasery located high in the mountains of Tibet. The book’s fantastical drama follows a group of plane-crash survivors who have landed in the mythical Shangri-La, a valley hidden deep within the mountains of the Himalayas. Rescued by followers of the High Llama, the outsiders grow to love the remote paradise, but a member of the British diplomatic service, Hugh Conway suspects that the crash was no accident, begins to investigate, leading to a surprising revelation.

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BOOK 8:

The Lost World

by Arthur Conan Doyle, Introduction by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by LJHT

The Lost World is a science fiction novel by British writer Arthur Conan Doyle, published in 1912, concerning an expedition to a plateau in the Amazon basin of South America where prehistoric animals still survive. It is an early example of the monster attack genre and adventure narrative to an unknown mysterious land. It's London, 1907. Journalist Edward Malone, rejected by the woman he loves because he is too prosaic, decides to go in search of adventure and fame to prove himself worthy of her. Soon after, he meets Professor George Challenger, a scientist who claims to have discovered a 'lost world' populated by pterodactyls and other prehistoric monsters.

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BOOK 9:

The War of the Worlds

by H. G. Wells, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Ørjan Anmo Moen

The War of the Worlds is a science fiction novel by English author H. G. Wells. The novel is one of the most commented-on works in the science fiction canon. It is one of the earliest stories to detail a conflict between mankind and an extraterrestrial race. The novel is the first-person narrative of both an unnamed protagonist in Surrey and of his younger brother in London as southern England is invaded by Martians. When an army of invading Martians lands in England, panic, and terror seize the population. As the aliens traverse the country in huge three-legged machines, incinerating all in their path with a heat ray and spreading noxious toxic gases, the people of the Earth must come to terms with the prospect of the end of human civilization and the beginning of Martian rule.

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BOOK 10:

Heart of Darkness

by Joesph Conrad, Foreward by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Malte Madsen

Heart of Darkness was published in 1899. It was written by Joseph Conrad and is about a voyage up the Congo River. The novella contains a story within a story, following a character who recounts his adventure to a group of people. In the story, a voyage takes readers deep into the Congo Free State. Upon the river, we journey into the very heart of Africa. The narrator, Charles Marlow, describes his travels in the African continent to his friends while aboard the boat anchored on the River Thames. Heart of Darkness implicitly comments on imperialism and racism. It acts as a reflection on corruptive European colonialism and is a journey into the nightmare psyche of those who have become corrupt. Heart of Darkness is considered to be one of the most influential works ever written.

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BOOK 11:

The Old Man and the Sea

by Ernest Hemingway, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by Winslow Homer

The Old Man and the Sea tells the story of a battle between an aging, experienced fisherman, Santiago, and a large marlin. The story opens with Santiago having gone 84 days without catching a fish, and now being seen as "salao", the worst form of unluckiness. It was written by the American author Ernest Hemingway in 1951 in Cayo Blanco, and published in 1952. It was the last major work of fiction written by Hemingway that was published during his lifetime.

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BOOK 12:

The Picture of Dorian Gray

by Oscar Wilde, Foreword by Randy H. Sooknanan, Edited by Denise K. McTighe, Cover Art by RE

The Picture of Dorian Gray is a Gothic and philosophical novel by Oscar Wilde. It is written in his distinctively dazzling manner and tells the story of a fashionable young man who sells his soul for eternal youth and beauty. The novel remains the author’s most popular work. It was originally published in its earliest form with Lippincott's Monthly Magazine in 1890. The tale of Dorian Gray’s moral disintegration caused a scandal when it was first serialized and published in the British magazine. Fearing the story was indecent, prior to publication the magazine's editor deleted roughly five hundred words without Wilde's knowledge. Despite that censorship, the story offended the moral sensibilities of British book reviewers, some of whom said that Oscar Wilde merited prosecution for violating the laws guarding public morality. The Picture of Dorian Gray is actually the only novel written by Wilde however it exists in several different versions. There is the 1890 magazine edition, which contains 13 chapters, in which important material was deleted before publication by the editor. Then there is another "uncensored" version which was also submitted to Lippincott's Monthly Magazine for publication which is presented in 13 chapters as well but contains all of Wilde's original material intact. The full version was first published in a book edition in 1891 by Harvard University Press with no censorship in 20 chapters. This edition contains the full 20 chapter version..