The Splendour of a Morning, by C.P. Cavafy, Barbarian Press (2016)

Constantine P. Cavafy (1863-1933) is generally considered to be the greatest Greek poet of modern times and one of the most influential poets of the previous century. Cavafy was born in 1863 in Alexandria, Egypt, and spent most of his life there, though he did live in England for much of his adolescence, “developing a command of the English language and a preference for the writings of Shakespeare and Oscar Wilde.” … Continue reading The Splendour of a Morning, by C.P. Cavafy, Barbarian Press (2016)

The Black Tulip, by Alexandre Dumas, Limited Editions Club (1951)

Reading Alexandre Dumas (1802-1870) is, to me, a nearly perfect way of being entertained.  Throw in a nice bottle of Burgundy (which is the only libation to drink with Dumas!), and the world becomes perfect bliss! His stories are captivating, full of romance, action, adventure and drama.  It is little wonder why he remains one of the most widely read of all French authors, and that his … Continue reading The Black Tulip, by Alexandre Dumas, Limited Editions Club (1951)

The Odyssey, by Homer, Published by Bruce Rogers, Emery Walker & Wilfred Merton (1932)

A few months ago, Books and Vines highlighted a magnificent typological work of the early twentieth century, the 1931 Limited Editions Club (LEC) editions of Homer‘s Iliad and Odyssey, both designed and printed by one of the 20th centuries master typographers, Jan van Krimpen. This work was recognized by Martin Hunter and Jerry Kelly in their look at the best finely printed books of the twentieth century, A Century for the Century. There is another fine … Continue reading The Odyssey, by Homer, Published by Bruce Rogers, Emery Walker & Wilfred Merton (1932)

Our Grandmothers, by Maya Angelou, Limited Editions Club (1994)

I have remarked in the past on how the Limited Editions Club (LEC) under Sidney Shiff did an excellent job at expanding the focus of the LEC to include many more modern works, including those by African-American writers and artists, that had been overlooked by the LEC in the past. The work highlighted in this article is a perfect example. Mr. Shiff combined the great and iconic African-American writer/poet Maya … Continue reading Our Grandmothers, by Maya Angelou, Limited Editions Club (1994)

The Ocean Wave, by Ambrose Bierce, The Press of Robert LoMascolo (2011)

The great American short story writer/satirist Ambrose Bierce (1842–~1914) has only been highlighted once to date in Books and Vines, a travesty I have long been wanting to address.  His contemporaries considered him a virtuoso of the English language and his work was very popular. His An Occurrence at Owl Creek Bridge is considered one of the greatest of American short stories, and the collection it is contained within, Tales of … Continue reading The Ocean Wave, by Ambrose Bierce, The Press of Robert LoMascolo (2011)

The Frogs, by Aristophanes, Limited Editions Club (1937)

The great Ancient Greek comedy from Aristophanes, The Frogs, was first performed at one of the Festivals of Dionysus in Athens, in 405 BC, where it received first place. It remains one of the preeminent works of this golden era of human flowering, and it retains its humor and relevance nearly 2,500 years later. With a plot that centers around  Dionysus playing a judge in a contest between  Euripides and Aeschylus for the title … Continue reading The Frogs, by Aristophanes, Limited Editions Club (1937)