A book to feed your mind. A book to calm your soul. A book to raise your spirits. A book and you shall never be alone.
Indeed, gift your friend a piece of literature and that shall be the most everlasting gift you can give to a person, for flowers wither, stones corrode and wealth gets stolen away. Being nestled for centuries now, literature has turned out to be more than just a mirror for our society. I am sure the people who cannot put their books down once they have begun understand very well what I am saying. Books take you into the mind of another person, enabling you to see a world that never existed or is dead and gone, immortalizing people and places, myths and legends, while taking you on exemplary journeys without the involvement of motion.
Having commenced as the Age of Enlightenment 18th century gradually morphed into the age of Romanticism and contains many a piece of literature that re-confirm as to why pen is mightier than a sword. Read closely!
One Thousand and One Nights (Arabian Nights)
The first thing that comes to the mind on reading this name is the popular Disney song “Arabian Nights” but did you know that having gained huge popularity in 18th century Europe and eventually other parts of the world the Arabian Nights, was originally known as One Thousand and One Nights and is a collection of folks and tales from the Middle East and South East Asia. The story revolves around a bitter Sassanian king who would make several marriages and execute each of his wives until one cunning bride in order to escape the execution takes to narrating stories which continue for one thousand and one nights. The collection covers tales of Ali Baba and the forty thieves, Sinbad and his adventures, children’s most loved Aladdin and his magic lamp and many more tales.
The Castle of Otranto
Dealing with plots, prophecies, a princess in distress, lustful kings, one brave protagonist/prince and a beguiling series of events “The Castle of Otranto” is a gothic novel, the first of its kind which emerged out of the pen of Horace Walpole. If unsettling foretelling doesn’t creep you out and suspense is what you seek, this 18th century text should be among your must reads.
The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano
Breaking norms of the hsitorical times, this piece of writing happens to be an autobiography by an African slave, Olaudah Equiano documenting his struggle through slavery and his attempts to be a free man while he placed his faith in Bible. One of the most read slave narratives, this book besides talking about Equiano’s difficult path to freedom and success, also deals with the then social norms, religion and lifestyle.
The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling
Highly commended by writers like S.T. Coleridge and W. Somerset Maugham, a picaresque novel by nature it is a comic satire presented by Henry Fielding. It is about Thomas Jones, the foundling with a mysterious birth, adventures through the political and social interjections existent in that age, playing his boyish charms until he grows up into a responsible good-natured man and discovers his true heritage and lady-love. Those fond of the bad boy turned good plots must give it a read.
She Stoops To Conquer
This amazing and highly recommended novel written by Oliver Goldsmith gained such popularity among the readers that within five days of its production, every single copy was sold. Also known as “The Mistakes of a Night”, Goldsmith’s piece on mistaken identities is spun around the charming and witty Kate Hardcastle who feigns as a barmaid to win the love of her gentlemanly yet shy husband-to-be.