The Oxford Book of Essays (Oxford Books of Prose)

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9780192840899: The Oxford Book of Essays (Oxford Books of Prose)

Now in a more readable format, this sweeping collection ranges from the early 1600s through the 1980s and includes 140 essays by 120 of the finest writers in the history of the English language. John Gross, former book critic for The New York Times, has collected classics and rare gems, representative samples and personal favorites, intimate essays and learned, serious reflections and hysterically funny satire, by both British and American writers. The authors Gross has gathered form a gallery of genius, all indispensable masters of rhetoric, from Samuel Butler to Samuel Johnson, from George Eliot to George Bernard Shaw, from John Dryden to Ben Franklin, from E.B. White to Joan Didion. Including book reviews and travel sketches, history lessons and meditations, reflections on art and on potato chips, these essays sample four centuries of eloquence and insight in a collection that is at once immensely enlightening, edifying, and entertaining.

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About the Author:


John Gross is the author of 'The Rise and Fall of the Man of Letters' (1973) and editor of 'The Oxford Book of Aphorisms' (1983), among other publications. He was editor of the Times Literary Supplement from 1974 to 1981, and is currently theatre critic of the Sunday Telegraph.

Review:

A vast, wonderful company. Michael Foot,The Observer, From the thousands of essays and pieces available nobody would choose the same...but I doubt if anyone would have chosen better Frank Kermode,Independent on Sunday The selection has nothing in it that is not of the top class...John Gross has the shrewdest possible eye for what practitioners in the genre can do best with a sense of form and culture, of humour and balance...Every essay here is a pleasure to read. John Bayley, Times Literary Supplement John Gross's achievement is to see the essay as an essentially modern medium which addresses us as directly and potently as the newspaper. Barbara Everett, The Independent

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