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Showing posts from 2013

Sample the forthcoming eBook - 20 days of The Harvard Classics (free PDF download)

While the eBooks are still in progress, I've created a free 20 day sampler for you all to take a glimpse at what I'm working towards.

The sampler includes over 200 pages of reading material, beginning with an excerpt from Franklin's biography, and including texts from Milton, Shakespeare, Locke and more!

Simply click on the banner above to download the PDF. Share it freely with anyone you like! Post it on your blog or social media accounts! My aim is to hare the pleasure of The Harvard Classics with as many people as possible (and of course I'd love to drum up more support for our Kickstarter campaign).

Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below. I hope you enjoy the sampler and look forward to sharing the completed ebooks with you all soon.

Download all 51 Volumes of The Harvard Classics as PDF, MOBI, ePub or Text

Archive.org provides all 51 volumes of The Harvard Classics anthology in many formats for free download on their servers. Unfortunately, the current page listing all of these volumes is a little disorganised, so to help you easily locate and download the files you need, I have collected all of the links on a single page.

You will find volumes organised numerically with a short description of the text and download links for the PDF, MOBI, ePub and plain text files.

There's even a road sign about The Harvard Classics!

Harvard Classics advertisement in Life Magazine, 1922

While browsing for photos of the Harvard Classics anthology, I came across this amazing advertisement from a copy of Life Magazine published in 1922. What an amazing ad!

I can't help wondering if the "booklet" described is in fact the same reading guide we're using as the basis for the HC365 project...

Kickstarter project in progress...

To help ensure the eBooks and website are ready for a 2014 launch, I've decided to develop a Kickstarter project.

I'm aiming to raise £250 which will help cover some of the costs for this project, and in return guarantee that all supporters will receive an advance copy of the eBook (with some other great rewards yet to be announced).

Watch this space for news of the project launch - and my eternal thanks in advance to any and all who pledge their support!

About one-quarter through...

I'm now just over a quarter of the way through transcribing all of the reading material outlined in Eliot's reading guide for The Harvard Classics, having just finished January through March.

So far, that's over 600 A4 pages, approximately 200 per month or between 5 and 10 per day. I dread to think how my poor old laptop will cope with the memory required to put all of the months together in one huge document, or how many pages this will transform into once I ready it for PDF, Kindle and ePub formats!

But despite all of this, I can honestly say I haven't enjoyed a project so much in years! I simply hope I am able to find the time to get everything together and publish in plenty of time for the start of 2014.

A Little Bit of Everything For Dummies - Now Free for Kindle!

If you're a fan of the "For Dummies" series of books, or would just like to know a bit about a whole lot of things, here's a great free Kindle book for you.

A Little Bit of Everything for Dummies celebrates 20 years of the For Dummies series with 20 chapters covering a vast rage of subjects from DOS through to Canadian History, guitar and even puppies! Best of all, it's currently free to download for Kindle!

100 Books Every Child Should Read

In celebration of National Children's Book Week, Booktrust has compiled a list of the 100 best children's books to read by the age of 14.

The exciting 100 combines an eclectic mix of traditional classics and modern greats that we believe are must-reads to fire children’s imaginations and turn them into life-long readers. The cut-off age of 14 was chosen as beyond that, children tend to progress to more adult literature.The books are divided into age-based categories, with titles ranging from The Cat in the Hat to The Hobbit and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time.
For the full list of books on one page, check out this page on Metro or visit the link below to view by age category and vote for your favourites.
The Ultimate List of 100 best children's books (via Booktrust)

Download Volume 1 of The Harvard Classics

The original full-length first volume of The Harvard Classics collection is available for download in many formats from Archive.org. Here I have provided links to the most popular formats for your convenience.

Volume 1 includes:
Autobiography of Benjamin FranklinJournal of John WoolmanFruits of Solitude by William Penn Download formats (made available by Archive.org) PDFPlain TextePubmobi Even more formats are available at The Open Library.

Reading Literary Fiction can Increase your Emotional Intelligence

A recent study published in Science Magazine suggests that reading literary fiction (as opposed to popular fiction or non-fiction) can temporarily improve your emotional intelligence.
Understanding others’ mental states is a crucial skill that enables the complex social relationships that characterize human societies. Yet little research has investigated what fosters this skill, which is known as Theory of Mind (ToM), in adults. We present five experiments showing that reading literary fiction led to better performance on tests of affective ToM (experiments 1 to 5) and cognitive ToM (experiments 4 and 5) compared with reading nonfiction (experiments 1), popular fiction (experiments 2 to 5), or nothing at all (experiments 2 and 5). Specifically, these results show that reading literary fiction temporarily enhances ToM. More broadly, they suggest that ToM may be influenced by engagement with works of art. Participants reading literary fiction scored better on tests measuring empathy, s…

A Mammoth Task

When I initially decided to write Harvard Classics 365, I didn't actually realise how great a task this would be.

Each of the daily readings spans 4-5 (occasionally 6) A4 pages in my word processor. Multiply this by 365, and we're talking about a book with several thousand pages, particularly when you realise this will be published for reading on tablet-style devices...

But you know what? I'm really enjoying this project!

Welcome to Harvard Classics 365!

The start of the new year is yet some months away, but come January 1st 2014 I will be embarking on a literary journey to discover the essence of The Harvard Classics.

Using Eliot's Reading Guide, I will be reading sections of the 5 foot shelf for about 15 minutes a day in order to give myself a (free) education.

Pop back often to see updates as they are posted, and be sure to subscribe (by email or RSS) if you would like to embark on this journey with me.