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Peter Owen Modern Classic

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  • Scandal by Endo Shusaku
    Scandal (English, Paperback) Endo Shusaku

    Suguro is an eminent Catholic novelist, respectably married and on the cusp of old age. So when a drunken woman approaches him at an awards ceremony claiming to know him from his regular visits to Tokyo's red-light district, she must surely be mistaken.

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  • Journey to the East by Hermann Hesse
    Journey to the East (English, Paperback) Hermann Hesse

    Describes the history of a journey undertaken by a secretive 'League'. This novel reveals the existence of a fantastical, alluring and deeply intimate world in which a journey can cross not only the boundaries of time and space but even those of fact and fiction, in which one's travelling companion might just as easily be Don Quixote as Paul Klee.

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  • Asylum Piece by Anna Kavan
    Asylum Piece (English, Paperback) Anna Kavan

    This collection of stories, mostly interlinked and largely autobiographical, chart the descent of the narrator from the onset of neurosis to final incarceration in a Swiss clinic. The sense of paranoia, of persecution by a foe or force that is never given a name, evokes The Trial by Kafka, a writer with whom Kavan is often compared, although her deeply personal, restrained and almost...

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  • Spring Night by Tarjei Vesaas
    Spring Night (English, Paperback) Tarjei Vesaas

    This novel relates the events that overtake a girl and her young brother when they are left unaccompanied for the night on their parents' farm. They have to cope alone when a group of strangers call at the house after their car breaks down.

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  • Sleep Has His House by Anna Kavan
    Sleep Has His House (English, Paperback) Anna Kavan

    A daring synthesis of memoir and surrealist experimentation, Sleep Has His House charts chronologically the stages of the subject's gradual withdrawal from all interest in and contact with the daylight world of received reality. Brief flashes of daily experience from childhood, adolescence and youth are described in what Kavan terms 'night-time language' - a heightened, decorative prose that frees...

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  • Julia and the Bazooka by Anna Kavan
    Julia and the Bazooka (English, Paperback) Anna Kavan

    Originally published: London: Owen, 1970.

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  • The Seed by Tarjei Vessas
    The Seed (English, Paperback) Tarjei Vessas

    From the author of The Ice Palace, winner of Bookslut's Daphne Award for fiction, comes a new addition to the Peter Owen Modern Classics series...

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  • Boat in the Evening by Tarjei Vesaas
    Boat in the Evening (English, Paperback) Tarjei Vesaas

    Earning its author a third nomination for the Nobel Prize, this tale centers on a crane colony arriving at its breeding ground to play out a delicate drama, ending with the rarely observed ceremony of the ritual dance. All is observed by a transfixed child who has frozen into his background and become a piece of nature himself. With a kind of cinematic impressionism, this novel voyages back...

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  • Gold by Blaise Cendrars
    Gold (English, Paperback) Blaise Cendrars

    In January 1848 John Augustus Sutter, the first American millionaire, was ruined by one blow of a pickaxe - a blow that revealed gold in one of the streams in his Californian estate, triggering the Gold Rush that brought hordes of greedy miners to his vast domain from every corner of the world....

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  • In the Shadow of Islam by Isabelle Eberhardt
    In the Shadow of Islam (English, Paperback) Isabelle Eberhardt

    In 1897 Isabelle Eberhardt, aged twenty, left an unconventional life in Geneva for Kenadsa, at the Moroccan frontier. Gripped by spiritual restlessness and a desire to transcend boundaries, she travelled into the desert, into the heart of Islam. This book follows her. Courage and hunger for authenticity led her into totally unfamiliar territory: she was captivated by the Sahara and its...

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  • Alberta and Jacob by Cora Sandel
    Alberta and Jacob (English, Paperback) Cora Sandel

    Hailed as a masterpiece on its British publication in 1962, this Modern Classic reissue should bring this magnificent novel to a new generation. Imaginative and intelligent, Alberta is a misfit trapped in a stiflingly provincial town in the far north of Norway whose only affinity is for her extrovert brother Jacob. Combining mastery of style and characterization with brilliant descriptive writing,...

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  • Who are You? by Anna Kavan
    Who are You? (English, Paperback) Anna Kavan

    Who Are You? is a sparse depiction of the hopeless, emotional polarity of a young couple and their doomed marriage spent in a remote, tropical hell....

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  • Le Livre Blanc by Jean Cocteau
    Le Livre Blanc (English, Paperback) Jean Cocteau

    Le Livre Blanc, a `white paper' on homosexual love, was first published anonymously in France by Cocteau's contemporary Maurice Sachs and was at once decried as by the critics as obscene. The semi-autobiographical narrative describes a youth's love affairs with a succession of boys and men during the 1900s.

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  • Duo by Colette
    Duo (English, Paperback) Colette

    In Duo, Colette observes, with masterly astuteness and perception, two characters whose marriage is foundering on the wife's infidelity. Acting out the final crisis, Alice and Michel have the stage to themselves so that nothing is allowed to distract from the marital dialogue....

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  • Narcissus and Goldmund by Hermann Hesse
    Narcissus and Goldmund (English, Paperback) Hermann Hesse, Graham Coxon

    Narcissus is a teacher at Mariabronn, a monastery in medieval Germany, and Goldmund is his favourite pupil. While Narcissus remains detached from the world in prayer and meditation, Goldmund runs away from the monastery in pursuit of love. Then, he lives a picaresque wanderer's life, his amatory adventures resulting in pain as well as ecstasy.

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  • Samurai by Endo Shusaku
    Samurai (English, Paperback) Endo Shusaku

    "Endo to my mind is one of the finest living novelists."  ?Graham Greene In 1613, four low-ranking Japanese Samurai, accompanied by a Spanish priest, set sail for Mexico on an unprecedented mission: to bargain for a Catholic crusade through Japan in exchange for trading rights with the West. Among the first Japanese ever to set foot in Europe, they travel to Rome and gain an audience with the...

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  • To the Slaughterhouse by Jean Giono
    To the Slaughterhouse (English, Paperback) Jean Giono

    Written in chilling detail, this novel describes the effect of World War I on a small community in Provence. In some of the most fiercely realistic and horrifying scenes of war ever recreated in literature, this story evokes the harsh, primitive conditions in the trenches as well as the loneliness and anxiety experienced by those left at home. The gradual disintegration of normal life and...

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  • Demian by Hermann Hesse
    Demian (English, Paperback) Hermann Hesse

    Schoolboy Emil Sinclair boasts of a theft and finds himself blackmailed by a bully. He turns to Max Demian in whom he finds a friend and mentor. Under this strangely self-possessed figure's guidance Emil discovers a new world of corruption and evil. This novel by one of Europe's greatest writers is a story of adolescent awakening.

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  • Ice by Anna Kavan
    Ice (English, Paperback) Anna Kavan

    In this haunting and surreal novel, the narrator and a man known as 'the warden' search for an elusive girl in a frozen, seemingly post-nuclear, apocalyptic landscape. Together with the narrator, the reader is swept into a hallucinatory quest for this strange and fragile creature with albino hair. She is, we know, Anna Kavan herself.

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