Books

My Ántonia

Willa Cather

The final novel in the Great Plains trilogy, this is a celebration of the American midwest with Cather's strongest heroine at its heart

Jim and Ántonia meets as children in the wide open plains of Nebraska at the end of the nineteenth century. Jim leaves for college and a career in the east, while Ántonia stays at home, dedicating herself to her farm and family. As the years roll by, Jim will come to view Ántonia as the embodiment of the prairie itself - tough, spirited and enduring, despite the hardness and loneliness of pioneer life. Willa Cather's beautiful novel is a celebration of the Nebraskan prairie she loved she much, and a powerful depiction of a pivotal era in the making of America.

The Song of the Lark

Willa Cather

The second novel in the Great Plains trilogy, this is a passionate portrait of the artist as a young woman

Thea Kronberg, a young girl from a small town in Colorado has a great gift - her beautiful singing voice. Her talent takes her to the great opera houses of Europe, and through ambition and hard work, she forges a life as an artist. But if she can never go home again, nor can she leave behind her past. At last, in a desert canyon in Arizona, Thea has a revelation that will allow her to attain a new state of spirituality and become a truly great artist.

'Willa Cather makes a world which is burningly alive, sometimes lovely, often tragic' Helen Dunmore

'The Song of the Lark illuminates all her work' A. S. Byatt

'Lingers long in the memory' Joyce Carol Oates

O Pioneers!

Willa Cather

The first novel in the Great Plains trilogy, this is an ode to the American Midwest and the immigrants who transformed it

To the anger of her brothers, it is Alexandra who is entrusted to manage their family farm in the tough, hostile prairie of Hanover, Nebraska following the death of their father. As the years pass, Alexandra rises heroically to the challenge, finding strength in the savage beauty of the land even as loneliness and personal tragedies crowd in. A rapturous work of understated lyricism, Willa Cather's 1913 tale of a pioneer woman who tames the wild, hostile lands of the Nebraskan prairie is also the story of what it means to be American.

Death Comes for the Archbishop

Willa Cather

'Quite simply a masterpiece ... I am completely bowled over by it; by the power of its writing, by the vividness of its scene painting and by the stories it tells' A. N. Wilson

'Where there is great love there are always miracles'

Two French priests have been sent to New Mexico to reawaken the faith. There, they must contend with unforgiving landscapes, danger, rebellion and loneliness. But through their many years together they are sustained by faith, friendship and the awe-inspiring majesty that surrounds them. A work of great simplicity and sublime beauty, Willa Cather's acclaimed novel asks, what is a life well lived?

Death Comes for the Archbishop is a masterpiece by the author of O Pioneers! and the great novelist of American frontier life.

'Its whole effect works slowly and mysteriously ... a major, and rare, artistic achievement' A. S. Byatt

O Pioneers!

Willa Cather

'She had felt as if her heart were hiding down there, somewhere, with the quail and the plover and all the little wild things that crooned or buzzed in the sun...'

A rapturous work of savage beauty, Willa Cather's 1913 tale of a pioneer woman who tames the wild, hostile lands of the Nebraskan prairie is also the story of what it means to be American.

A new series of twenty distinctive, unforgettable Penguin Classics in a beautiful new design and pocket-sized format, with coloured jackets echoing Penguin's original covers.

Biography

Willa Cather was born in Virginia in 1873 and moved to Nebraska, with its wide open plains and immigrant farming communities, at the age of nine. This landscape would deeply affect her later writing. She attended university and became a journalist and teacher in Pittsburgh, and then a magazine editor in New York. Her first major novel, O Pioneers!, appeared in 1913 and was followed by two more in her prairie trilogy, The Song of the Lark and My Ántonia, as well as her masterpiece Death Comes for the Archbishop. She lived with the editor Edith Lewis for thirty-nine years until her death in 1947.