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CHAPTER I THE STRANGE MAN'S ARRIVAL The stranger came early in February, one wintry day, through a biting wind and a driving snow, the last snowfall of the year, over the down, walking from Bramblehurst railway station, and carrying a little black portmanteau in his thickly gloved hand. He was wrapped up from head to foot, and the brim of his soft felt hat hid every inch of his face but the shiny tip of his nose; the snow had piled itself... more...

Big Joe Merklos was the first of them. He appeared at the Wide Bend National Bank one day, cash in hand. The charm of him, his flashing smile, the easy strength in his big body, were persuasive recommendations. But the bank's appraisal scarcely got that far. Wasn't he the first buyer in fifteen years for that bone-yard of lonely dreams, Dark Valley? The county seat of Wide Bend presided over three valleys, corresponding to the forks of the... more...

The Blue Cross Between the silver ribbon of morning and the green glittering ribbon of sea, the boat touched Harwich and let loose a swarm of folk like flies, among whom the man we must follow was by no means conspicuous—nor wished to be. There was nothing notable about him, except a slight contrast between the holiday gaiety of his clothes and the official gravity of his face. His clothes included a slight, pale grey jacket, a white... more...

Persia is rich in folk lore. For hundreds and hundreds of years the stories in this book, and many others as well, have been told to the wondering boys and girls of that country, who, as they hear them, picture their native land as one of roses and tulips, where beautiful fairies build their castles in the rosy morn, and black gnomes fly around in the darkness of midnight. A land, too, where the sun gleams like a fire above the blue mountains,... more...

In a world where Security is all-important, nothing can ever be secure. A mountain-climbing vacation may wind up in deep Space. Or loyalty may prove to be high treason. But it has its rewards.It had been a tough day at the lab, one of those days when nothing seems able to go right. And, of course, it had been precisely the day Hammond, the Efficiency inspector, would choose to stick his nose in. Another mark in his little... more...


CHAPTER I. THE YOUNG ADVENTURERS, LTD. "TOMMY, old thing!" "Tuppence, old bean!" The two young people greeted each other affectionately, and momentarily blocked the Dover Street Tube exit in doing so. The adjective "old" was misleading. Their united ages would certainly not have totalled forty-five. "Not seen you for simply centuries," continued the young man. "Where are you off to? Come and chew a bun with me. We're getting a bit unpopular... more...

CHAPTER ONE PLAYING PILGRIMS "Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug. "It's so dreadful to be poor!" sighed Meg, looking down at her old dress. "I don't think it's fair for some girls to have plenty of pretty things, and other girls nothing at all," added little Amy, with an injured sniff. "We've got Father and Mother, and each other," said Beth contentedly from her corner. The four young faces on... more...

CHAPTER I. When John Marsh, the steel man, died, there was considerable stir in the inner circles of New York society. And no wonder. The wealthy ironmaster's unexpected demise certainly created a most awkward situation. It meant nothing less than the social rehabilitation of a certain individual who, up to this time, had been openly snubbed, not to say deliberately "cut" by everybody in town. In other words, Society was compelled, figuratively... more...

Chapter 1 I am by birth a Genevese, and my family is one of the most distinguished of that republic. My ancestors had been for many years counsellors and syndics, and my father had filled several public situations with honour and reputation. He was respected by all who knew him for his integrity and indefatigable attention to public business. He passed his younger days perpetually occupied by the affairs of his country; a variety of... more...

Dear Judy: Your letter is here. I have read it twice, and with amazement. Do I understand that Jervis has given you, for a Christmas present, the making over of the John Grier Home into a model institution, and that you have chosen me to disburse the money? Me—I, Sallie McBride, the head of an orphan asylum! My poor people, have you lost your senses, or have you become addicted to the use of opium, and is this the raving of two fevered... more...