Culture Street

Books

Little Black Classics for everyone

On April 22, 2015

To celebrate the 80th birthday of Penguin Books, Penguin have published 80 Little Black Classics, putting the spotlight on publishing’s most famous series, Penguin Classics.

At 64 pages and $1.99 each, the Little Black Classics are beautifully designed, complete mini-books to be collected, shared and enjoyed.

Little Black Classics include unfamiliar works from very familiar authors such as The Beautifull Cassandra by Jane Austen.

If you don't already know the story behind Penguin then here it is ... Penguin was established in 1935 by Allen Lane, then a director of The Bodley Head. After a weekend visiting Agatha Christie in Devon, Lane found himself on a platform at Exeter station searching its bookstall for something to read on his journey back to London. Appalled by the selection on offer, Lane decided to establish a publishing house with the founding ideals that books should be cheap (the same price as 10 cigarettes), accessible and of a high standard of quality.

“The design of the Little Black Classics chimes with Penguin’s heritage. The white panel across the middle
and the centred tiling is a friendly wink to the original tri-band look of the 30s and 40s.” Jim Stoddart, Art director, Penguin Press.

Here are our top picks from Little Black Classics.

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