Publishing History > The Penny Library of Famous Books (George Newnes Limited) - Book Series List

The Penny Library of Famous Books
Publisher: George Newnes Limited. Country: United Kingdom. Date: 1896-99.

Tales... - Poe (Penny Library of Famous Books/George Newnes) (image)

Tales of Mystery and Imagination
by Edgar Allan Poe.
London, George Newnes Limited, c. 1895
(The Penny Library of Famous Books. No.2).
Paperback with illustrated card covers.

The Crack of Doom - Cromie (Penny Library of Famous Books/George Newnes) (image)

The Crack of Doom
by Robert Cromie.
London, George Newnes Limited, 1896.
(The Penny Library of Famous Books, No. 17).
Paperback with illustrated card covers. Includes an advertisement for hardback edition of the same book and advertisements for Strand magazines also published by George Newnes.

The Crack of Doom is a work of science fiction and includes what some regard as the first ever description in a novel of an atomic explosion.

Series Note: There were 177 volumes in this series. A new "number" (i.e. volume) was issued in the Penny Library of Famous Books every week. The size of each volume was Crown Demy-Octavo.

The publisher, George Newnes Limited, was located at 8, 9, 10 and 11, Southampton Street and Exeter Street, Strand, London, W.C.

The Library included many standard literary works (novels and short stories) among its volumes (by authors such as Austen, Bulwer Lytton, Dickens, Hawthorne, Scott, and Thackeray) as well as some fictional works of action, intrigue and adventure (Pirate by Captain Marryat; Wild Adventures in Texas and Other Tales from Blackwood by Anonymous; Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne), horror (History of Caliph Vathek and Anabaptist by William Beckford), and science fiction (The Crack of Doom by Robert Cromie). Most of the Library's authors were British or American but some were from the Continent (e.g. Balzac; Dumas; Hugo; Merimee; Sue). Books by a number of popular middlebrow authors featured in the Library (e.g. Love and Duty by Mrs. Anne Marsh-Caldwell; Windsor Castle by William Harrison Ainsworth; Sicilian Romance by Mrs. Ann Ward Radcliffe).

* * *

Penny Library of Famous Books (George Newnes)
Penny Poets (W. T. Stead, ed.) and Penny Popular Novels (W. T. Stead, ed.)

It never rains but it pours, and there are to be rival series of penny editions. Mr. Stead's abridgments of the poets [
The Penny Poets] and the novelists [Penny Popular Novels] will find a strong competitor in the "Penny Library of Famous Books" which is announced by Sir George Newnes, and which is to consist of "absolutely unabridged editions." Few, we suppose, having the choice would prefer to read the half instead of the whole. The "Penny Library" aims also at the destruction of the "penny dreadful," and the warfare will be watched with sympathy. "The conductors of the 'Penny Library of Famous Books' will," we are told, "demonstrate to the buyers of penny publications that there is a world of delightful reading which may be brought within the compass of their means of expenditure -- which run through the whole range of human emotion, now thrilling the reader with healthy excitement, now irresistibly compelling his laughter or tears -- works which have given immeasurable enjoyment to readers in the past, and have an assured inheritance of popular favour in the ages to come. Of such books no country in the world possesses so splendid and inexhaustible a treasure as England, and it is from that priceless store the contents of this series will be drawn, with only such limitation as is obviously dictated by the purpose sought to be achieved." It is rather curious to note after this declaration that of the four authors who are name, two are Irish, one is American, and only one is English. The books so far announced belong to the domain of fiction. It is a remarkable thing to have a well-printed edition of the "Vicar of Wakefield," with which the series begins, for a penny, and we trust that the new enterprise will be crowned with the success it deserves. But we wish that those who enter upon such undertakings would study the lesson of the cheap series that have been issued in France and Germany, and see if they could not venture a little more out the beaten track. The "Bibliotheque Nationale" and the libraries published by Reclam and Mayer [Meyer -- ED.], to mention only the most widely known, contain a good deal beside the best popular novels. Some of the translations of English books are cheaper than any edition of the original text.

-- "Books and Bookmen", The Guardian, 18 January 1896, p. 9.

Volume Number / Title / Author

Vicar of Wakefield
by Oliver Goldsmith, Oliver

Tales of Adventure, Mystery and Imagination
by Edgar Allen Poe

Suil Dhuv, the Coiner
by Gerald Griffin

Feats on the Fiord
by Harriet Martineau

Scarlet Letter
by Nathaniel Hawthorne

Great Hoggarty Diamond and Major Gahagan
by William Makepeace Thackeray

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Peep o' Day or John Doe
by John Banim

Admiral's Daughter
by Mrs. Anne Marsh-Caldwell

11. and 12.
Ben Brace.
by Frederick Chamier

Peg Woffington
by Charles Reade

Deformed and Professional Visits of the Black Doctor
by Mrs. Anne Marsh-Caldwell

15. and 16.
Stories of Waterloo
by W. H. (William Hamilton) Maxwell

Crack of Doom
by Robert Cromie

by Captain Frederick Marryat

19. and 20.
Nick of The Woods
by Robert Montgomery Bird

Christie Johnstone
by Charles Reade

Barney O'Reirdon and Other Irish Legends and Stories
by Samuel Lover

23. and 24.
Rifle Rangers
by Captain Mayne Reid

Mrs Caudle's Curtain Lectures
by Jerrold Douglas

Some Tough Yarns by the Old Sailor
by H. M. (Henry Matthew) Barker

27. and 28.
Sense and Sensibility
by Jane Austen

Wild Adventures in Texas and Other Tales from Blackwood
by Anonymous

by Benjamin Disraeli

31. and 32.
Crohoore of the Bill Hook
by Michael Banim

Black Dwarf
by Sir Walter Scott

Sketches of Young Gentlemen, etc.
by Charles Dickens

35. and 36.
Plant Hunters
by Captain Mayne Reid

Phelim O'Toole's Courtship; Ned M'Keown, etc.
by William Carleton

39. and 40.
Massacre of St. Bartholomew
by Prosper Merimee

Love and Duty
by Mrs. Anne Marsh-Caldwell

42. and 43.
Robber of the Rhine
by Leitch Ritchie

Half Sir
by Gerald Griffin

45. and 46.
Cliff Climbers
by Captain Mayne Reid

49. and 50.
Christmas Books [Christmas Carol, Chimes, Cricket on Hearth, Battle of Life]
by Charles Dickens

51. and 52.
Old St Paul's
by William Harrison Ainsworth

Old St Paul's (conclusion) and Haunted Man
by William Harrison Ainsworth
by Charles Dickens

Man and Money
by Emile Souvestre

Money-Seekers and Other Tales
by Mrs. Catherine Crowe

56. and 57.
Rienzi: Last of the Roman Tribunes
by Edward Bulwer Lytton

Gentlemen in Black
by Anonymous

Vendetta and Other Tales
by Honore de Balzac

60. and 61.
Harry Lorrequer
by Charles James Lever

Conclusion of Harry Lorrequer and Renounced Treasure and Other Tales
by Charles James Lever

Silver Ship of Mexico
by J. H. (Joseph Holt) Ingraham

Memoir of a Mother-in-Law
by George R. Sims

65. and 66.
Marchioness of Brinvilliers
by Albert Smith

Father's Curse: From Highways and Byways
by Thomas Colley Grattan

Black Tulip
by Alexandre Dumas

69. and 70.
Tokeah; or White Rose
by Charles (George) Sealsfield

Colomba: A Corsican Story
by Prosper Merimee

Three Cutters and Mosaic Masters
by Captain Frederick Marryat
by George Sand

73. and 74.
Windsor Castle
by William Harrison Ainsworth

Price of Blood
by Friedrich Gerstacker

Game of Life
by Leitch Ritchie

77. and 78.
Hunchback of Notre Dame
by Victor Hugo

John Manesty
by Doctor William Maginn

81. and 82.
Last Days of Pompeii
by Edward Bulwer Lytton

by John Banim

Forester's Daughter
by Paul Feval

85. and 86.
by Sir Walter Scott

Dark Lady of Doona
by W. H. (William Hamilton) Maxwell

Missing Diamonds; and Haunted Marsh
by Emmanuel Gonzales
by George Sand

89. and 90.
Mysteries of the Heaths
by Frederic Soulie

Gold Finders of California; and Shawn Dhuv (? Griffin)
by Captain Mayne Reid

92. and 93.
Rory O'More
by Samuel Lover

History of Caliph Vathek and Anabaptist
by William Beckford

95. and 96.
Guy Fawkes

Demon Pilot and Other Tales
by W.H.G. (William Henry Giles) Kingston

Samuel the Jeweller: Tale of Sixteenth Century and Helen
By Anonymous

99. and 100.
Fardorougha the Miser
by William Carleton

Fireside Stories; and Inundation
by Thomas Ingoldsby

The Rose and the Ring; and Corsican Brothers
by Alexandre Dumas
by William Makepeace Thackeray

103. and 104.
For God and the Czar!
by J.E. (Joyce Emmerson) Muddock

Soldier's Fortune
by Mrs. Anne Marsh-Caldwell

Eight Mysteries
by Alexandre Dumas

107. and 108.
Hard Times
by Charles Dickens

Calderon the Courtier; and Count Ludwig (from The Picnic Papers)
by Edward Bulwer Lytton

110. and 111.
by Sir Walter Scott

Bit o' Writin; and Esther (from The Picnic Papers)
by Michael Banim
by Horace Smith

113. and 114.
Madame Blue Beard
by Eugene Sue

Chronicles of Clovernook
by Jerrold Douglas

116. and 117.
Phantom Ship
By Captain Frederick Marryat

Castle Sombras and Other Tales
by Herbert Greenhough Smith

119. and 120.
Night and Morning

Luck of Roaring Camp
by Bret Harte

122. and 123.
Hunter's Feast
by Captain Mayne Reid

124. and 125.
Feudal Crimes
by Paul Duplessis

Celebrated Jumping Frog
by Mark Twain

127. and 128.
Round the World in Eighty Days
by Jules Verne

Dozen Pair of Wedding Gloves
by Anonymous

130. and 131.
by William Harrison Ainsworth

132, 133. and 134.
Westward Ho!
by Charles Kingsley

Hearts of Gold and Hearts of Steel
by Henry Herman

136. and 137.
Mary Barton
by Mrs. Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

by Carl Spindler

139. and 140.
Saucy Arethusa
by Captain Frederick Chamier

Lover Upon Trial
by Lady Augusta Louisa Lyons (Long)

142. and 143.
Rachel and Aixa, or Hebrew and Moorish Maidens
by Emmanuel Gonzales, Emmanuel

Some Exciting Adventures
by William Patrick Kelly

145. and 146.
Miser's Daughter
by William Harrison Ainsworth

by M. G. (Matthew Gregory) Lewis

148. and 149.
Richard Savage
by Charles Whitehead

151. and 152.
by G. P. R. (George Payne Rainsford) James

153., 154. and 155.
Three Musketeers
by Alexandre Dumas

156., 157. and 158.
Twenty Years After
by Alexandre Dumas

Cavalier and Roundhead
by Alfred Armitage ?

160., 161. and 162.
Tower of London
by William Harrison Ainsworth

Dead Guest
by Heinrich Zschokke

164. and 165.
Adventures and Piracies of Captain Singleton
by Daniel Defoe

Sicilian Romance
by Mrs. Ann Ward Radcliffe

167. and 168.
Vicomte de Bragelonne
by Alexandre Dumas

Renegade; or Moors in France
by Charles Victor Prevot, Vicomte d'Arlincourt

172., 173., 174., 175., 176. and 177.
Religious stories of one Charles M. Sheldon, a popular American pastor: Richard Bruce, or Life that Now Is
by Charles M. Sheldon

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