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on May 11, 2000
One of the joys of life is found in reading and starting a collection for your own libary. I am a college student and had to use this shorter edition for my Major American Authors course. It provides a great way to meet many different writers and see what you personally like. It is true that your collection of books should show something about your personality; therefore, the most helpful part of this anthology is the amount of writers you will be able to become aquainted with and see if you like.
It provides more help by giving beautiful introductions and biographies of all of the writers included. I like the mix of short stories and some full length novels too. Very helpful and I'd recommend it to anyone who is looking to start a little library of their own.
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I am saddened that the combined efforts of W.W. Norton and Amazon gave us such incomplete Product Information. FWIW the product here is a two-volume work in the NORTON ANTHOLOGY OF AMERICAN LITERATURE, Eighth (most recent) Edition, Package 1 consisting of Vols. A and B: A being "Beginnings to 1820" and B "1820 to 1865." The offering price is a good one, especially considering that the outsize Volume B alone, the greater part of a combined 1808 pages, retails at $42.50. (For about the same amount of money Amazon offers "Package 2," consisting of volumes C, D and E, taking the survey up to the present.) The advantage here is a lot of lit for a moderate amount of money; the disadvantage is that it comes in whopping paperbacks with very thin pages. Still, since renting these books costs about half the offer price, you might as well buy. This Eighth Edition has only been extant since late 2011 so used copies are going to be hard to come by in the immediate future.
33 comments| 25 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 27, 2002
I bought this book for my American Lit Survey course. Over the past semester I have read a majority of this book. I have come to realise that this book is good for both class and any home in America. This book contains writings from Christopher Columbus and Cabeza De Vaca to Alberto Rios and Li-Young Lee. Between those writers there are great American works by Samule Clemens and Henry David Thoreau. A collection of writings like this is perfect for any home. I encourage all people who want a copy of "Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" and "The Yellow Wall Paper" in one library to save space and just buy this book.
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on September 20, 2002
Rarely does one encounter a book that can be read when you are in any mood. Despite the physical weight of the anthology, which makes it awkward to carry around, there is something in it for everyone. The book includes authors ranging from the beginning of American history, such as Columbus, to modern day writers like Pinsky. I found the collection to be complete and varied. The biographical introductions to each author are helpful from an academic standpoint, as well as to shed light on writers I was not familiar with. The most interesting aspect of the anthology is the development of writing styles throughout the centuries. The themes and forms vary to reflect what was important at certain times. This is truly an fabulous book filled with colorful writings that mirror the intellectualism of men and women we oftentimes overlook as being antiquated in style. For there is nothing more timeless than Anne Bradstreet's letter to her children written in the 1600's. She speaks of the ageless trials of parenthood, love, and duty to God. I hope others will enjoy this book and learn something from it, even if it's that you don't like a certain author.
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on October 7, 2012
As a textbook, it's great. There are so many great texts within these books, and they're compact enough that hauling them back and forth to class isn't a huge burden. The only thing I don't like about the books themselves is that the paper is so unbelievably thin, it tears easily, and if you hold it in one spot too long, it begins to wrinkle from the oils on your skin. Regarding price, I don't think for the amount of literature in here that you could ask for a better amount, and part of the reason I bought through Amazon was that they were offering it twenty dollars cheaper than my campus bookstore. Speed of delivery...wasn't great, but I knew that before I even bought it; it said right on the page that there would be a few weeks wait before it even shipped. It arrived in great condition.
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on August 31, 2014
Required book for a college course that is now requiring a new book to be purchased with a one-time-use access code. It seems that publishers are finding new ways to avoid sustainability and circumvent the used book market by making colleges assign these new book bundles. I am glad that some professors allow students to choose whether or not they want to buy the bundle, which includes some extras including study guides, or opt out and buy/rent the used books and save money. At NVCC in Manassas, every class this semester "required" the access code bundles at $150-278 a book. Multiply that by 6 classes and you get a cost-prohibitive situation for most students. I was glad that find this book as an inexpensive rental, and I'll go the extra mile and scour the book for my answers and make my own study guide. If it costs me a half a grade or more, it may be worth it to be able to afford college.
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on May 22, 2016
Ordered the volumes C, D, and E got one book ,after, my two day shipping was canceled. Once the package arrived I opened it to find only volume E present. This has all occurred a week after my class started, where the books are necessary to succeed.
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on January 17, 2013
The selection is great. I love the introductions before each time period- it really helps understand the history and culture of the time. Each author has a bio, which is nice. It's nicely laid out, easy to read, and very compact. Since I love literature, this series is a great value and something I enjoy reading outside of class.
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on December 1, 2015
Not enough variety to the stories selected. This anthology seems to focus too much on narratives involving slavery and womens oppression narratives. While these stories have value and absolutely should be a large part of the anthology, there isn't much of a variety beyond those two things. It just wasn't for me I suppose.
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on May 9, 2016
The stories that were legible were great. All 5 of them. For the rest of the works I was not able to enjoy them due to the poor physicial condition of the books that was misleadingly described as in "good condition." Very disappointed these books contain masterpieces.
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