Best of
Fiction

1945

Arch of Triumph: A Novel of a Man Without a Country


Erich Maria Remarque - 1945
    Despite a law banning him from performing surgery, Ravic--a German doctor and refugee living in Paris--has been treating some of the city's most elite citizens for two years on the behalf of two less-than-skillful French physicians.Forbidden to return to his own country, and dodging the everyday dangers of jail and deportation, Ravic manages to hang on--all the while searching for the Nazi who tortured him back in Germany. And though he's given up on the possibility of love, life has a curious way of taking a turn for the romantic, even during the worst of times.

The Aleph and Other Stories


Jorge Luis Borges - 1945
    With uncanny insight, he takes us inside the minds of an unrepentant Nazi, an imprisoned Mayan priest, fanatical Christian theologians, a woman plotting vengeance on her father’s “killer,” and a man awaiting his assassin in a Buenos Aires guest house.  This volume also contains the hauntingly brief vignettes about literary imagination and personal identity collected in The Maker, which Borges wrote as failing eyesight and public fame began to undermine his sense of self.For more than seventy years, Penguin has been the leading publisher of classic literature in the English-speaking world. With more than 1,700 titles, Penguin Classics represents a global bookshelf of the best works throughout history and across genres and disciplines. Readers trust the series to provide authoritative texts enhanced by introductions and notes by distinguished scholars and contemporary authors, as well as up-to-date translations by award-winning translators.

The Bridge on the Drina


Ivo Andrić - 1945
    A great stone bridge built three centuries ago in the heart of the Balkans by a Grand Vezir of the Ottoman Empire dominates the setting of Ivo Andric's stunning novel. Spanning generations, nationalities, and creeds, the bridge stands witness to the countless lives played out upon it: Radisav, the workman, who tries to hinder its construction and is impaled on its highest point; to the lovely Fata, who throws herself from its parapet to escape a loveless marriage; to Milan, the gambler, who risks everything in one last game on the bridge with the devil his opponent; to Fedun, the young soldier, who pays for a moment of spring forgetfulness with his life. War finally destroys the span, and with it the last descendant of that family to which the Grand Vezir confided the care of his pious bequest - the bridge.

The Great Divorce


C.S. Lewis - 1945
    Lewis's classic vision of the Afterworld, the narrator boards a bus on a drizzly English afternoon and embarks on an incredible voyage through Heaven and Hell. He meets a host of supernatural beings far removed from his expectations, and comes to some significant realizations about the nature of good and evil.A stunning new edition of this timeless allegory of heaven and hell, repackaged and rebranded as part of the C.S. Lewis Signature Classics range.

The Portable Poe


Edgar Allan Poe - 1945
    This text includes all of Poe's best-known tales and poems, with representative articles, criticism, letters and opinions.

The Thurber Carnival


James Thurber - 1945
    A bestseller upon its initial publication in 1945, The Thurber Carnival captures the depth of his talent and the breadth of his wit. The stories compiled here, almost all of which first appeared in The New Yorker, are from his uproarious and candid collection My World and Welcome to It—including the American classic "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty"—as well as from The Owl in the Attic, The Seal in the Bathroom, and Men, Women and Dogs.

Leaf by Niggle


J.R.R. Tolkien - 1945
    Niggle, the painter, is a kind hearted soul and goes out of his way to help his friends and neighbours but eventually finds that this prevents him from completing his masterpiece. He has a hard decision to make; when engrossed in his work, his neighbour asks him to fix his roof using his art supplies.

Tootle


Gertrude Crampton - 1945
    Tootle, a young train in training, begins leaving the tracks to cavort in the meadow until engineer Bill figures out a way to lure him back.

Big Red


Jim Kjelgaard - 1945
    From the moment Danny sees the beautiful Irish setter, he knows Red is the dog for him.  Fast and smart, strong and noble, Red is the only dog Danny wants by his side.  Soon, neither boy nor dog can stand to be apart.  Together Danny and Red face many dangers in the harsh Wintapi wilderness that they call home.  But the greatest test of their courage and friendship will come from an enemy more cunning than any they've known before--a bear who is the undisputed king of the wilderness, a savage killer called Old Majesty.

The Egyptian


Mika Waltari - 1945
    A 1940s #1 Bestseller and a Historic Novel All-Time Favorite A historic novel all-time favorite, after its translation in English from Swedish, The Egyptian topped the bestseller charts in 1949 and the years following. The protagonist of the novel is the fictional character Sinuhe, the royal physician, who tells the story in exile after Akhenaten's fall and death. Apart from incidents in Egypt, the novel charts Sinuhe's travels in then Egyptian-dominated Syria, in Mitanni, Babylon, Minoan Crete, Mitanni, and among the Hittites.The main character of the novel is named after a character in an ancient Egyptian text commonly known as The Story of Sinuhe. The original story dates to a time long before that of Akhenaten: texts are known from as early as the 12th Dynasty.Much concerned about the historical accuracy of his detailed description of ancient Egyptian life forced the author to carry out considerable research into the subject. The result has been praised not only by readers but also by Egyptologists.Waltari had long been interested in Akhenaten and wrote a play about him which was staged in Helsinki in 1938. World War II provided the final impulse for exploring the subject in a novel which, although depicting events that took place over 3,300 years ago

The Collected Stories of Katherine Mansfield


Katherine Mansfield - 1945
    Born in Wellington, New Zealand in 1888, she came to London in 1903 to attend Queen's College and returned permanently in 1908. her first book of stories, 'In a German Pension', appeared in 1911, and she went on to write and publish an extraordinary body of work. This edition of The Collected Stories brings together all of the stories that Mansfield had written up until her death in January of 1923. With an introduction and head-notes, this volume allows the reader to become familiar with the complete range of Mansfield's work from the early, satirical stories set in Bavaria, through the luminous recollections of her childhood in New Zealand, and through the mature, deeply felt stories of her last years. Admired by Virginia Woolf in her lifetime and by many writers since her death, Katherine Mansfield is one of the great literary artists of the twentieth century.

The Death of Virgil


Hermann Broch - 1945
    Out of the last hours of Virgil's life and the final stirrings of his consciousness, the Austrian writer Hermann Broch fashioned one of the great works of twentieth-century modernism, a book that embraces an entire world and renders it with an immediacy that is at once sensual and profound.Begun while Broch was imprisoned in a German concentration camp, The Death of Virgil is part historical novel and part prose poem - and always an intensely musical and immensely evocative meditation on the relation between life and death, the ancient and the modern.

London Belongs to Me


Norman Collins - 1945
    This Penguin Modern Classics edition includes an introduction by Ed Glinert, author of The London Compendium.It is 1938 and the prospect of war hangs over every London inhabitant. But the city simply doesn't stop. Everywhere people continue to work, drink, fall in love, fight and struggle to get on in life. At the lodging-house at No.10 Dulcimer Street, Kennington, the buttoned-up clerk Mr Josser returns home with the clock he has received as a retirement gift. The other residents include the faded actress Connie; tinned food-loving Mr Puddy; widowed landlady Mrs Vizzard (whose head is turned by her new lodger, a self-styled 'Professor of Spiritualism'); and flashy young mechanic Percy Boon, whose foray into stolen cars descends into something much, much worse...Norman Collins (1907-1982) was a British writer, and later a radio and television executive, who was responsible for creating Woman's Hour on BBC Radio 4, and became one of the major figures behind the establishment of the Independent Television (ITV) network in the UK. In all Norman Collins wrote 16 novels and two plays, including London Belongs to Me (1945), The Governor's Lady (1968) and The Husband's Story (1978).If you enjoyed London Belongs to Me, you might like Sam Selvon's The Lonely Londoners, also available in Penguin Modern Classics.'One of the great city novels: a sprawling celebration of the comedy, the savagery, the eccentricity and the quiet heroism at the heart of ordinary London life'Sarah Waters, author of The Night Watch

Cannery Row


John Steinbeck - 1945
    Rather, it is an attempt to capture the feeling and people of a place, the cannery district of Monterey, California, which is populated by a mix of those down on their luck and those who choose for other reasons not to live "up the hill" in the more respectable area of town. The flow of the main plot is frequently interrupted by short vignettes that introduce us to various denizens of the Row, most of whom are not directly connected with the central story. These vignettes are often characterized by direct or indirect reference to extreme violence: suicides, corpses, and the cruelty of the natural world.The "story" of Cannery Row follows the adventures of Mack and the boys, a group of unemployed yet resourceful men who inhabit a converted fish-meal shack on the edge of a vacant lot down on the Row.Sweet Thursday is the sequel to Cannery Row.

The Moomins and the Great Flood


Tove Jansson - 1945
    It´s the story about Moominmamma and Moomintroll´s search for the missing Moominpappa and how they found their way to the Moominvalley.

Justin Morgan Had a Horse


Marguerite Henry - 1945
    He spoke now to the horse, as though he were the one that mattered. "Why, come to think of it, you're just like us, Bub. You're American! That's what you are. American!" In 1791 a Vermont schoolmaster by the name of Justin Morgan comes home with a two-year-old colt named Little Bub. Taken as payment for an outstanding debt, the little colt doesn't seem like he is worth much, but the kindly teacher asks one of his students, Joel Goss, to train him. Joel knows the horse has great potential, and soon word about Little Bub spreads throughout the entire Northeast for his ability to outwork, outrun, outtrot, and outwalk any horse in the area. This is the extraordinary tale of a little workhorse, who, after being born in obscurity, becomes one of the greatest breeding stallions of all time. In this true story Newbery Medal-winning author Marguerite Henry and artist Wesley Dennis celebrate the life of the only horse ever to establish a breed all by himself -- the Morgan.

Hollow Tree House


Enid Blyton - 1945
    However, they are not the happiest of children. But then, one day, they discover a hollow tree, and with their friend, Angela, they turn the tree into a hideaway dream house and all their dreams start to come true.

Brideshead Revisited: The Sacred and Profane Memories of Captain Charles Ryder


Evelyn Waugh - 1945
    It tells the story of Charles Ryder's infatuation with the Marchmains and the rapidly-disappearing world of privilege they inhabit. Enchanted first by Sebastian at Oxford, then by his doomed Catholic family, in particular his remote sister, Julia, Charles comes finally to recognize only his spiritual and social distance from them.

The Mitchells: Five for Victory


Hilda van Stockum - 1945
    In the first of three books about their adventures, Daddy has just gone off to World War II. One of his final words to his daughter Joan is, "No dogs " She would dearly love such a pet, but life is full and so many new friends -- pets as well as people -- join the Mitchells, she hardly has time to think about dogs. The children form a club to do their part for the war-effort -- first and foremost helping Mother, of course. Humorous and tender incidents combine with delightful illustrations to make the Mitchells truly unforgettable.

The White Deer


James Thurber - 1945
    It is the story of a beautiful princess, transformed from a deer, who assigns each of three princes a perilous labor to perform in order to win her hand. Drawings by the Author.

The Tree That Sat Down


Beverley Nichols - 1945
    Maybe some of the characters have a modern touch...the witch for instance keeps a vacuum cleaner to assist her with her spells, but otherwise it joins all those magic tales which begin once upon a time.'Beverly Nichols

The Age of Reason


Jean-Paul Sartre - 1945
    Translated from the French by Eric Sutton.

The Best of Damon Runyon


Damon Runyon - 1945
    Stokes Company, February 24, 1938.

Henrietta Sees It Through: More News from the Home Front 1942-1945


Joyce Dennys - 1945
    Henrietta takes up weeding and plays the triangle in the local orchestra to take her mind off things; the indomitable Lady B, now in her late seventies, partakes in endless fund-raising events to distract herself from thoughts of life without elastic; and Faith, the village flirt, finds herself in the charming company of American GIs. With the war nearing its end, hope seems to lie just around the corner, and as this spirited community muddles through, Lady B vows to make their friendships outlast the hardship that brought them together. Joyce Dennys was born in 1893 in India. The Dennys family relocated to England in 1896. Dennys enjoyed drawing lessons throughout her schooling and later enrolled at Exeter Art School. As she got older, her drawing took a backseat to the domestic and social duties of a mother and doctor's wife and she became increasingly frustrated. She voiced her frustrations through the character of Henrietta, a heroine she created for an article for Sketch. These writings were later compiled to form Henrietta's War, first published in 1985.

Jonica's Island


Gladys Malvern - 1945
    Jonica's father is the town drunk, and when he is banished for theft, Jonica is saved from being sent to the almshouse when 14-year old Gerrit, one of seven sons of a leading citizen, pleads with his parents to take her in. She's endentured to the Van der Voorts, and works from dawn to dusk for the family she adores. However, even her hard work and loyalty may not be enough when she too is suspected of theft!

The Bears' Famous Invasion of Sicily


Dino Buzzati - 1945
    Along their treacherous and sometimes heartbreaking journey, the bears encounter an army of wild boars, a wily professor who may or may not be a magician, ghosts, snarling Marmoset the Cat, and, worst of all, treachery within their own ranks.If The Bears' Famous Invasion of Sicily sounds too distressing to read alone, that's because it is. Lemony Snicket's introduction to this extraordinary tale is unlikely to make you feel any better, and a careful study of Snicket's Reader's Companion, cleverly hidden at the back, may actually make you feel worse. For that reason, among many others, it is recommended that you either abandon this book, abandon plans to read it, or abandon all hope.

The City Of Trembling Leaves


Walter Van Tilburg Clark - 1945
    His classic coming-of-age tale is situated in Reno.

The Vigil


Satinath Bhaduri - 1945
    The novel is considered to be a master-piece of Indian literature and it was first published in 1945. It is a semi-autobiographical novel and it is set the 1940's during the Quit India Movement.

The Gingham Dog and the Calico Cat


Eugene Field - 1945
    By the author of The Sugarplum Tree.

The Short Novels of Dostoyevsky


Fyodor Dostoyevsky - 1945
    Dostoevsky in Moderation--Thomas MannThe GamblerNotes from UndergroundUncle's DreamThe Eternal HusbandThe DoubleThe Friend of the Family

A Stone, a Leaf, a Door: Poems


Thomas Wolfe - 1945
    Barnes with a forward by Louis Untermeyer HC/DJ New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1945

The Lonely


Paul Gallico - 1945
    He is torn by his loyalty to his fiance/childhood sweetheart back home.

The Passive Vampire


Ghérasim Luca - 1945
    Luca, whose work was admired by Gilles Deleuze, attempts here to transmit the "shudder" evoked by some Surrealist texts, such as André Breton's Nadja and Mad Love, probing with acerbic humor the fragile boundary between "objective chance" and delirium.Impossible to define, The Passive Vampire is a mixture of theoretical treatise and breathless poetic prose, personal confession and scientific investigation - it is 18 photographs of "objectively offered objects," a category created by Luca to occupy the space opened up by Breton. At times taking shape as assemblages, these objects are meant to capture chance in its dynamic and dramatic forms by externalizing the ambivalence of our drives and bringing to light the nearly continual equivalence between our love-hate tendencies and the world of things.

Best Supernatural Stories


H.P. Lovecraft - 1945
    Collection that includes the following stories:Introduction: Something About Howard Phillips LovecraftThe Whisperer in Darkness In the VaultThe Call of CthulhuThe Colour Out of SpaceThe Dunwich Horror The Haunter of the Dark The Music of Erich ZannThe Picture in the HouseThe Terrible Old Man The Thing on the DoorstepCool Air Pickman's Model The OutsiderThe Rats in the Walls

Emeralds for the King


Constance Savery - 1945
    Before the dawn he had to memorize a secret map and the map was then destroyed. Woe to him if he forgot his hastily conned lesson!Tosty sets out for his brothers' home hoping to get the treasure before anyone knows his mission but unfortunately his brothers have excellent wit and know just why he came. While they struggle to find the treasure for Cromwell without the map, Tosty, who knows just where to look, is held prisoner and cannot serve his king. But the boy does escape time after time and often without light or proper equipment makes his search. Among the adventures in this book is a struggle with an underground river, a climb down the sheer face of a cliff, a long visit to a kindly old lady whom Tosty thinks is a which, and such riding and excursions and alarums as generally fill three or four books. England is described with Miss Savery's usual beauty of expression and Tosty is a very real boy. Just wait for the chapter when he meets king Charles the First.

The Plain Princess


Phyllis McGinley - 1945
    But the Princess is in a sulky mood, and throwing one of her royal tantrums, she goads the usually well-mannered Prince into declaring what no one has ever dared to admit that she is a plain Princess. Faced at last with the truth, the Princess falls into a genuine decline, and her parents offer a great reward to anyone who can make her beautiful. All the wise men try, without success. Finally, the royal dustwoman, Dame Goodwit, offers to make the Princess beautiful in three months if the Princess will come and live in her cottage with her three daughters. The changes that take place are only natural ones; but when the Princess learns to do a truly unselfish thing, her mouth turns up, her nose turns down, and her eyes sparkle like the candles on a birthday cake.

The Pursuit of Love


Nancy Mitford - 1945
    Nancy Mitford's most famous novel, The Pursuit of Love satirizes British aristocracy in the twenties and thirties through the amorous adventures of the Radletts, an exuberantly unconventional family closely modelled on Mitford's own.The Radletts of Alconleigh occupy the heights of genteel eccentricity, from terrifying Lord Alconleigh (who, like Mitford's father, used to hunt his children with bloodhounds when foxes were not available), to his gentle wife, Sadie, their wayward daughter Linda, and the other six lively Radlett children. Mitford's wickedly funny prose follows these characters through misguided marriages and dramatic love affairs, as the shadow of World War II begins to close in on their rapidly vanishing world.

Conceived in Liberty


Howard Fast - 1945
    Shortly after the soldiers establish quarters for the cold months ahead, disease begins to rip through the camp. The men, helpless against sickness and despair, are facing the longest winter of their lives—and their survival will determine the fate of their young nation. Passionate and unforgettable, Conceived in Liberty is one of Fast’s rawest accounts of the brutality of the Revolutionary War, and of the heroism of its soldiers. This ebook features an illustrated biography of Howard Fast including rare photos from the author’s estate.

The Experience of the Night


Marcel Béalu - 1945
    It became a cult novel amongst the surrealists, gaining an almost mythic status as the masterpiece of the French Kafka. It inhabits a nighttime world where dream and reality are indistinguishable. A novel about vision, dream and reality. Its hero is the human eye and Marcel Adrien. He sees the sign of an ophthalmologist and enters to inquire about having his eyes tested and finds that he is expected. Dr Fohat has files on his future clients and diagnoses myopia and prescribes dark glasses and a treatment of pills to be taken after twelve hours of work on an empty stomach.

Glory for Me


MacKinlay Kantor - 1945
    The film, The Best Years of Our Lives was based on this book, with some changes.

Birthday Cake for Little Bear


Max Velthuijs - 1945
    Just as the piglet chef is adding whipped cream to the garnish of strawberries, along come Rabbit and Duck, who are allowed samples. Luckily the birthday bear shows up before the round robin of tasings gains too much momentum, and they all enjoy every last crumb. Full color.

Beach Red


Peter Bowman - 1945
    His brief (122-page) book, December Book-of-the-Month Club co-choice,* is the first novel by a combat author to describe the seizure of a Pacific island from the Japanese. It is the first time that such an action has been narrated in a medium which looks like unrhymed verse but which Author Bowman stoutly insists is sprung prose.† Prose or verse, it is the best form in which to tell Author Bowman's story—the thoughts that pass through a soldier's head during one hour of battle.-quote Time magazine--dec. 10, 1945. It is out of print, but used copies can be found. well worth the read today, as in 1945. Was later made in a movie, which is available now on DVD.

The Return of the Continental Op


Dashiell Hammett - 1945
    A collection of five short stories previously unpublished in book form, edited and introduced by Ellery Queen.The Whosis KidThe Gutting of CouffignalDeath and CompanyOne HourThe Tenth Clue

The Red Right Hand


Joel Townsley Rogers - 1945
    While the novel contains all the requisite clues and false leads of its sometimes more elegant British counterpart, it also provides a quality rarely available in those more genteel entertainments. That quality is terror, sheer unmitigated terror, the kind that has readers checking to see if all the doors are securely locked. After all, it takes a strong constitution not to be frightened when a sympathetic, young New York doctor calmly starts to tell you the chilling story of a young couple on their way to be married who pick up an onminous hitchhiker (who may or may not have previously known the husband-to-be). They are involved in a mysterious accident which results in the disappearance of both men without leaving a trace — except somebody's severed right hand.

The River Road


Frances Parkinson Keyes - 1945
    The mighty chronicle of a fabulous family--the hot-headed, hot-blooded d'Alverys, and of the skeleton-ridden house where they were born.

A Bell for Adano


Paul Osborn - 1945
    Summary: An Italian-American major, part of American occupation forces in Sicily during World War II, tries to reform the town in his charge by being decent to people. His efforts are epitomized by his efforts to replace the 700-year-old bell melted down for bullets by the fascists. World War, 1939-1945 -- Drama.

Take Three Tenses: A Fugue in Time


Rumer Godden - 1945
    (Wikipedia)

Catherine Goes to School


Joanna Lloyd - 1945
    When her family decides it is time for her to be properly educated, she finds that boarding school is very different from her quiet life in the country.