The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, first published in 1941, is the story of a man whose only escape from the banality of his life as a middle-aged accountant is a world of his own in which he fantasises about his brilliant careers as a top surgeon, naval officer and brave pilot amongst others.
However, his reverie is always rudely interrupted by his wife's constant hen-pecking or occasional near-accidents in parking lots.
Then one day he comes into possession of a little black book containing a secret - information that plunges him deep into a confusing conspiracy and gives him the chance to be a real hero.
Thurber's psychological study of his protagonist is at turns both funny and sad, and the story has found its way into the general consciousness, a 'Walter Mitty' character now defined in the OED as 'referring to a person who fantasises about a life much more exciting and glamorous than their own'.
This collection also includes many other classic Thurber pieces that will delight fans of Thurber's and a new readership alike