"Books are the treasured wealth of the world, the fit inheritance of generations and nations."
-Henry David Thoreau
"There's no better way to inform and expand your mind on a regular basis than to get into the habit of reading good literature . . . You can get into the best minds that are now or that have ever been in the world."
As with it's predecessor, joggoon.com, joggoon 2 brings a user-centered reading experience to classic works of literature. No membership, no fees, no app to download and install, no requirements except that you enjoy the stories we provide.
The reader app, indeed the entire joggoon 2 site, was designed in a "mobile-first" fashion. That is, my primary focus was the user experience on a tablet, next was the mobile experience for those that don't mind endless scrolling while reading in such a small space. The desktop experience is by default a good experience because of this design strategy.
Most of our authors are from the Victorian era - the 19th and early 20th centuries - during a time when so much of our present day cultures were fashioned. Novels written during this time were written as High Art, the craft of weaving stories that not only entertain, but expand one's vocabulary, improve memory, and foster creativity. These authors have much to offer our own generation if we would only take the time to read and, even moreso, encourage our children to read these works.
In contrast, today's novels tend to be written in a lower manner - easy to read, fast paced and with entertainment only as their goal. They require little deep thinking and often rely on 'fluff' and unnecessary explicit language.
Classic literature often presents a moral lesson or shares deep, real life issues that every generation shares in the struggles of life. A great part of the experience in reading these books is finding the treasures hidden within their pages. Walt Disney once remarked, "There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." When we read these books, we find characters that we can identify with and learn from in our own life's struggle, a sentiment C.S. Lewis conveyed in his comment, "We read to know we are not alone." Books are more than stories or entertainment - they are companions that can be returned to time and again.
Curl up with a classic short story today and get to know this long-forgotten friend. If you have a paper-and-ink version, fantastic! If you don't, look for it on joggoon 2!
That dedication still stands. However, there is another person I would like to dedicate joggoon 2 to, another whose love of literature is as deep as my Grandfather's, who also inspires my love for good literature just as much as my Grandfather. That man is my Uncle Gordon.
When I was young, my father had shelves full of my Grandfather's books. In my Uncle's house, however, is a collection that, in my view, is kin to a small public library. I can peruse, even stare, at the shelves of a used book store for hours. When I visit my Uncle's house, his shelves have the same effect.
After the recent passing of my Mother, I found within her records a small booklet originally published in 1904, my current edition published in 1945. I do not know to whom that little book originally belonged to, but I share it here as an important addition to my own library - The Song of our Syrian Guest, by William Allen Knight. It is a wonderful read and highly recommended.
The original joggoon will stay in place as it is. It is currently the third design implemented for the site from it's beginning. Every time I have run through the site to consider improvements since the latest design was launched, I have found little I felt needed changing.
In the interest of being able to add titles at a much faster rate (once I budget the time to do so in my already busy schedule with my "real job"), I eliminated the concept of author pages for joggoon 2. It took quite a bit of time researching and gathering material for an author's bio and finding and processing a photo. It was a tough decision to make, but my hope is that readers of the books on joggoon will be inspired to do their own research into the authors of books and the stories rapidly becoming lost to posterity.
One other loose guideline for the titles added to joggoon 2 is the length of the books. Personally, I prefer a physical book in hand if the book I am reading is particularly long. However, for short reads, that is, short stories, I have a greater tolerance (and appreciation) for books in digital format. To that end, I focus on short stories for the titles I publish on joggoon 2.
joggoon 2 is a "child" of sorts of joggoon.com. It started as a project to create a "one page" book - one HTML file containing the entire content of a book and all the technology required to present a decent reading experience. Nine days later it became what you see here. I spent a couple of hours each evening and several late nights coding this site from scratch.