Set in turn-of-the-century New York, E.L. Doctorow’s Ragtime seamlessly blends fictional characters and realistic depictions of historical figures to bring to life the events that defined American history in the years before the First World War. Welcome to America at the turn of the 20th century, where the rhythms of ragtime set the beat. Harry Houdini astonishes audiences with magical feats of escape, the mighty J. P. Morgan dominates the financial world and Henry Ford manufactures cars by making men into machines..

Emma Goldman preaches free love and feminism, while ex-chorus girl Evelyn Nesbitt inspires a mad millionaire to murder the architect … More

When it was first published in 1897 – 120 years ago – Irish author Bram Stoker’s Dracula was ranked above work by Mary Shelley and Edgar Allan Poe, as well as Wuthering Heights. Yet it never made Stoker any money. Since 1931’s film Nosferatu the Vampire, however, it has never been out of print and is legendary among fans of the dark, macabre and mysterious …

Critic John Sutherland, a Dracula fan since childhood – and author of the literary puzzle classics Is Heathcliff a Murderer? … More