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The Heart of the Matter

“From first page to last . . . an engrossing novel” of betrayal and espionage on a colonial outpost during World War II (The New York Times).   In a British colony in West Africa, Henry Scobie is a pious and righteous man of modest means enlisted with securing borders. But when he’s passed over for a promotion as commissioner of police, the humiliation hits hardest for his wife, Louise. Already oppressed by the appalling climate, frustrated in a loveless marriage, and belittled by the wives of more privileged officers, Louise wants out.   Feeling responsible for her unhappiness, Henry decides against his better judgment to accept a loan from a black marketeer to secure Louise’s passage. It’s just a single indiscretion, yet for Henry it precipitates a rapid fall from grace as one moral compromise after another leads him into a web of blackmail, adultery, and murder. And for a devout man like Henry, there may be nothing left but damnation.   Drawn from Graham Greene’s own experiences as a British intelligence officer in Sierra Leone, The Heart of the Matter is “a powerful, deep-striking novel . . . of a spirit lost in the darkness of the flesh” (New York Herald Tribune).

The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors

EDITORIAL REVIEW: **When lightning strikes, lives are changed.**** **BECCA *On a sunny day in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, eight-year-old Becca Burke was struck by lightning. No one believed her—not her philandering father or her drunk, love-sick mother—not even when her watch kept losing time and a spooky halo of light appeared overhead in photographs. Becca was struck again when she was sixteen. She survived, but over time she would learn that outsmarting lightning was the least of her concerns.* BUCKLEY *In rural Arkansas, Buckley R. Pitank’s world seemed plagued by disaster. Ashamed but protective of his obese mother, fearful of his scathing grandmother, and always running from bullies (including his pseudo-evangelical stepfather), he needed a miracle to set him free. At thirteen years old, Buckley witnessed a lightning strike that would change everything.* Now an art student in New York City, Becca Burke is a gifted but tortured painter who strives to recapture the intensity of her lightning-strike memories on canvas. On the night of her first gallery opening, a stranger appears and is captivated by her art. Who is this odd young man with whom she shares a mysterious connection? When Buckley and Becca finally meet, neither is prepared for the charge of emotions—or for the perilous event that will bring them even closer to one another, and to the families they’ve been running from for as long as they can remember. Crackling with atmosphere and eccentric characters, *The Handbook for Lightning Strike Survivors* explores the magic of nature and the power of redemption in a novel as beautiful and unpredictable as lightning itself.

The Half Life of Stars: A Novel

SUMMARY: Claire’s older brother, Daniel, has disappeared. He leaves work one Friday afternoon, shortly before Christmas, and vanishes into thin air. Married, successful, rich, there seems no reason why he would abandon his life. Has he been killed? Has he been kidnapped? Or has he just had enough? Set between London and Miami, this is the story of a family with ghosts to bury. It opens on the day of the Challenger shuttle explosion at Cape Canaveral: a tragic moment that rips this family apart and sets Daniel’s disappearance in motion some 18 years later. In the midst of it all sits Claire—divorced, irresponsible, fluent in six foreign languages yet hopeless at interpreting life. It is Claire who knows Daniel best. It is Claire who becomes convinced that she knows where her older brother is and sets off on a journey to find him.

The Guns of August

Review

“Fascinating . . . One of the finest works of history written . . . A splendid and glittering performance.”
–_The New York Times
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“MORE DRAMATIC THAN FICTION . . . A MAGNIFICENT NARRATIVE . . . elegantly phrased, skillfully paced and sustained . . . The product of painstaking and sophisticated research.”
–_Chicago Tribune_

“A BRILLIANT PIECE OF MILITARY HISTORY which proves up to the hilt the force of Winston Churchill’s statement that the first month of World War I was ‘a drama never surpassed.’ A writer with an impeccable sense of telling detail, Mrs. Tuchman is able to evoke both the enormous pattern of the tragedy and the minutiae which make it human.”
–_Newsweek_

“[A] BEAUTIFULLY ORGANIZED, COMPELLING NARRATIVE.”
–_San Francisco Chronicle
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“AN EPIC NEVER FLAGGING IN SUSPENSE . . . It seemed hardly possible that anything new of significance could be said about the prelude to and the first month of World War I. But this is exactly what Mrs. Tuchman has succeeded in doing . . . by transforming the drama’s protagonists as well as its immense supporting cast, from half-legendary and half shadowy figures into full-dimensional, believable persons.”
–_The Christian Science Monitor_

“EXCELLENT . . . [_The Guns of August_] has a vitality that transcends its narrative virtues.”
–_The Wall Street Journal_

Product Description

“More dramtatic than fiction…THE GUNS OF AUGUST is a magnificent narrative–beautifully organized, elegantly phrased, skillfully paced and sustained….The product of painstaking and sophisticated research.”
CHICAGO TRIBUNE
Historian and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Barbara Tuchman has brought to life again the people and events that led up to Worl War I. With attention to fascinating detail, and an intense knowledge of her subject and its characters, Ms. Tuchman reveals, for the first time, just how the war started, why, and why it could have been stopped but wasn’t. A classic historical survey of a time and a people we all need to know more about, THE GUNS OF AUGUST will not be forgotten.

The Grimrose Path: A Trickster Novel

EDITORIAL REVIEW: **National bestselling author of *Roadkill* ** Bar owner Triva Iktomi knows that inhuman creatures of light and darkness roam Las Vegas-especially since she’s a bit more than human herself. She’s just been approached with an unusual proposition. Something has slaughtered almost one thousand demons in six months. And the killing isn’t going to stop unless Trixa and her friends step into the fight…

The Grey Man

Product Description

“A STUNNING ACTION THRILLER FROM A REAL-LIFE HERO. Kevin Dodds leads a dull, uneventful life. He has a steady job at the bank, a nice house and car. His wife goes to Bingo on a Saturday night, but he usually stays in to save money. But Kevin has spent enough quiet nights in watching TV and decides he’d like a night out himself. And he’s not talking about a pint and a packet of peanuts down at the local. He’s going to attempt to pull off a daring bank robbery single handed. Kevin is about to take a heart-thumping step into the unknown.

About the Author

Andy McNab joined the infantry as a boy soldier. In 1984 he was ‘badged’ as a member of 22 SAS Regiment and was involved in both covert and overt special operations worldwide. During the Gulf War he commanded Bravo Two Zero, a patrol that, in the words of his commanding officer, ‘will remain in regimental history for ever’. Awarded both the Distinguished Conduct Medal (DCM) and Military Medal (MM) during his military career, McNab was the British Army’s most highly decorated serving soldier when he finally left the SAS in February 1993. He wrote about his experiences in two phenomenal bestsellers, Bravo Two Zero, which was filmed in 1998 starring Sean Bean, and Immediate Action. He is the author of the bestselling novels, Remote Control, Crisis Four, Firewall, Last Light, Liberation Day and Dark Winter. Besides his writing work, he lectures to security and intelligence agencies in both the USA and UK.

The great lover

SUMMARY: Nell Golightly is living out her widowhood in Cambridgeshire when she receives a strange request: a Tahitian woman, claiming to be the daughter of the poet Rupert Brooke, writes to ask what he was like: how did he sound, what did he smell like, how did it feel to wrap your arms around him? So Nell turns her mind to 1909 when, as a seventeen-year-old housemaid, she first encountered the young poet. He was already causing a stir – not only with his poems and famed good looks, but also by his taboo-breaking behaviour and radical politics. Intrigued, she watched as Rupert skilfully managed his male and female admirers, all of whom seemed to be in love with him. Soon Nell realised that despite her good sense, she was falling for him too. But could he love a housemaid? Was he, in fact, capable of love at all? In a dazzling act of imagination, Jill Dawson gives voice to Rupert Brooke himself in a dual narrative that unfolds in both his own words and those of her spirited fictional character, Nell. A memorable tale of love in many guises, of heartbreak and loss, the novel brings Brooke vividly to life as it shows him to have been a far more interesting, complex and troubled figure than the romanticised version allows.

The Great Gatsby

EDITORIAL REVIEW: With an Introduction and Notes by Guy Reynolds, University of Kent at Canterbury. Generally considered to be F. Scott Fitzgerald’s finest novel, The Great Gatsby is a consummate summary of the “roaring twenties”, and a devastating expose of the “Jazz Age”. Through the narration of Nick Carraway, the reader is taken into the superficially glittering world of the mansions which lined the Long Island shore in the 1920s, to encounter Nick’s cousin Daisy, her brash but wealthy husband Tom Buchanan, Jay Gatsby and the mystery that surrounds him.

The Grass Widow’s Tale

Product Description

A reissue of the crime novel first published in 1968, featuring the detective George Felse.Previous reissues include A NICE DERANGEMENT OF EPITAPHS and THE KNOCKER ON DEATH’S DOOR.

From

With her policeman husband gone to investigate yet another murder on the eve of her 41st birthday, Bunty Felse feels dejected until she finds herself involved in kidnapping, chases and murder. Bishop’s smoothly flowing voice deftly narrates the story, keeping the tension and suspense moving forward. Balancing timing and pace with the momentum of the story, she adroitly dramatizes the emotions of the characters. The minor characters’ voices are as easily distinguished and individualized as those of the main characters. The Scottish accents are most enjoyable. P.A.J. (c)AudioFile, Portland, Maine

The Good Son: A Novel

EDITORIAL REVIEW: ***New York Times***** bestselling author Michael Gruber, a member of “the elite ranks of those who can both chill the blood and challenge the mind” (*The Denver Post*), delivers a taut, multilayered, riveting novel of suspense** Somewhere in Pakistan, Sonia Laghari and eight fellow members of a symposium on peace are being held captive by armed terrorists. Sonia, a deeply religious woman as well as a Jungian psychologist, has become the de facto leader of the kidnapped group. While her son Theo, an ex-Delta soldier, uses his military connections to find and free the victims, Sonia tries to keep them all alive by working her way into the kidnappers’ psyches and interpreting their dreams. With her knowledge of their language, her familiarity with their religion, and her Jungian training, Sonia confounds her captors with her insights and beliefs. Meanwhile, when the kidnappers decide to kill their captives, one by one, in retaliation for perceived crimes against their country, Theo races against the clock to try and save their lives.

The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ

EDITORIAL REVIEW: *The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ* is the remarkable new piece of fiction from best-selling and famously atheistic author Philip Pullman. By challenging the events of the gospels, Pullman puts forward his own compelling and plausible version of the life of Jesus, and in so doing, does what all great books do: makes the reader ask questions. In Pullman’s own words, “The story I tell comes out of the tension within the dual nature of Jesus Christ, but what I do with it is my responsibility alone. Parts of it read like a novel, parts like history, and parts like a fairy tale; I wanted it to be like that because it is, among other things, a story about how stories become stories.” Written with unstinting authority, *The Good Man Jesus and the Scoundrel Christ* is a pithy, erudite, subtle, and powerful book by a controversial and beloved author. It is a text to be read and reread, studied and unpacked, much like the Good Book itself.

The Godfather of Kathmandu

SUMMARY: Sonchai Jitpleecheep—John Burdett’s inimitable Royal Thai Police detective with the hard-bitten demeanor and the Buddhist soul—is summoned to the most shocking and intriguing crime scene of his career. Solving the murder could mean a promotion, but Sonchai, reeling from a personal tragedy, is more interested in Tietsin, an exiled Tibetan lama based in Kathmandu who has become his guru. There are, however, obstacles in Sonchai’s path to nirvana. Police Colonel Vikorn has just named Sonchai his consigliere (he’s been studying The Godfather on DVD): to troubleshoot, babysit, defuse, procure, reconnoiter—do whatever needs to be done in Vikorn’s ongoing battle with Army General Zinna for control of Bangkok’s network of illegal enterprises. And though Tietsin is enlightened and (eerily) charismatic, he also has forty million dollars’ worth of heroin for sale. If Sonchai truly wants to be an initiate into Tietsin’s “apocalyptic Buddhism,” he has to pull off a deal that will bring Vikorn and Zinna to the same side of the table. Further complicating the challenge is Tara: a Tantric practitioner who captivates Sonchai with her remarkable otherworldly techniques.Here is Sonchai put to the extreme test—as a cop, as a Buddhist, as an impossibly earthbound man—in John Burdett’s most wildly inventive, darkly comic, and wickedly entertaining novel yet.From the Hardcover edition.

The Girls of Room 28: Friendship, Hope, and Survival in Theresienstadt

From Publishers Weekly

Brenner, a Berlin-based journalist, focuses on 10 former child survivors, women in their late 70s, who went through the Theresienstadt concentration camp during the Holocaust. She notes that 12,000 children entered the camp from 1942 to 1944, but only a few hundred survived to war’s end, and a handful of women of Room 28 in the camp’s Girls’ Home, now scattered around the world, reunited for the first time in 1991. The insights of the survivors and stories of the camp’s victims are unforgettable and full of poignant humanity, conveyed through letters, photos, diaries and remembrances. Forced into exile and almost certain death under the Nazi regime, the children confronted hunger, cold, terror and the soul’s endurance as many of the girls of Room 28 were slowly eliminated; the small band of survivors is committed to keeping their memory alive. Well-detailed and inspiring, Brenner’s book, especially her heartfelt epilogue, pays glowing tribute to these heroic survivors. B&w photos. (Sept.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“This beautiful evocation of heartwarming friendship in the darkest of times is unforgettable.”
—Elie Wiesel

“The insights of the survivors and stories of the camp’s victims are unforgettable and full of poignant humanity, conveyed through letters, photos, diaries, and remembrances. . . . Well detailed and inspiring, Brenner’s book, especially her heartfelt epilogue, pays glowing tribute to these heroic survivors.”
—_Publishers Weekly_

“Brenner chronicles the remarkable artistic experiments undertaken by the girls, especially their enthusiastic production of the children’s opera Brundibár. An inspiring story of courage rendered through impressive personal and historical detail.”
—_Kirkus Reviews_

“The story of this children’s home in Theresienstadt takes us to the limit of the bearable, to the place where compassion, fear, and the temptation to simply turn away all lie in wait. To resist that temptation–isn’t that what the historical record must achieve?
—_DIE ZEIT

_”This handful of girls wanted their memories of their dead friends and their time in Theresienstadt not to be forgotten. They wanted to make the story of their survival, and the love and friendship that their caretakers showerd them, unforgettable. Together with the author, they have succeeded. In Hannelore Brenner, these women have found someone who listened to them, who read their albums of poetry, their diaries, and their chronicles, and who has written a wonderful book.”
—_PRAGER ZEITUNG

“_Brenner has gathered together these stories with great sensitivity. She makes the past spring to life and gracefully places the personal memories of these girls into a historical context, while at the same time offering solid research and background information regarding life in Theresienstadt and the political situation of the time.”
—_SÄCHSISCHE ZEITUNG_

The Girl Who Stopped Swimming

From Publishers Weekly

Jackson matches effortless Southern storytelling with a keen eye for character and heart-stopping circumstances. Laurel, a high-end quilt maker, sees the ghost of a little girl in her bedroom one night. When it leads her to the backyard and a dead girl in the swimming pool, the life Laurel had hoped to build in her gated Florida neighborhood with her video-game designer husband, David, and their tween daughter, Shelby, starts to fall apart. Though the police clear the drowning as accidental, it soon appears that Shelby and her friend Bet may have been involved. Bet, who lives in DeLop, Laurel’s impoverished hometown, was staying over the night of the drowning and plays an increasingly important role as the truth behind the drowning comes to light. Meanwhile, Laurel’s sister, Thalia, whose unconventional ways are anathema to Laurel’s staid existence, comes to stay with the family and helps sort things out. Subplots abound: Laurel thinks David is having an affair, and Thalia reveals some ugly family secrets involving the death of their uncle. What makes this novel shine are its revelations about the dark side of Southern society and Thalia and Laurel’s finely honed relationship, which shows just how much thicker blood is than water. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Review

“…a great tale [that] builds to an exciting and violent ending, one that surprises and yet seems to fit.”
-_USA Today_

“… buoyant and moving ….beautifully balanced between magical and realist fiction… closer in tone and voice to Alice Sebold’s ‘The Lovely Bones’ or Richard Ford’s Frank Bascombe trilogy.”
-_Atlanta Journal Constitution_

“A ghost story, family psychodrama, and murder mystery all in one. Jackson’s latest is a wild, smartly calibrated achievement. A-.”
-_Entertainment Weekly_

“Jackson matches effortless Southern storytelling with a keen eye for character and heart-stopping circumstances.”
-_Publisher’s Weekly_

“Joshilyn Jackson has done it again… her skillful unraveling of family secrets and betrayal left me breathless. You must read this book!”
-Sara Gruen, New York Times bestselling author of WATER FOR ELEPHANTS

The Girl She Used to Be

SUMMARY: When Melody Grace McCartney was six years old, she and her parents witnessed an act of violence so brutal that it changed their lives forever. The federal government lured them into the Witness Protection Program with the promise of safety, and they went gratefully. But the program took Melody’s name, her home, her innocence, and, ultimately, her family. She’s been May Adams, Karen Smith, Anne Johnson, and countless others–everyone but the one person she longs to be: herself. So when the feds spirit her off to begin yet another new life in another town, she’s stunned when a man confronts her and calls her by her real name. Jonathan Bovaro, the mafioso sent to hunt her down, knows her, the real her, and it’s a dangerous thrill that Melody can’t resist. He’s insistent that she’s just a pawn in the government’s war against the Bovaro family. But can she trust her life and her identity to this vicious stranger whose acts of violence are legendary?