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Aggressor

Review

“Addictive… Packed with wild action and revealing tradecraft.”
_–Daily Telegraph

_“McNab is a terrific novelist. When it comes to thrills, he’s Forsyth class.”
–Mail on Sunday

From the Paperback edition.

Product Description

The stunning new thriller from the master of the genre.

Nick Stone seems to be living his dream, not a care in the world as he steers his camper van round the surfing and parachuting centres of Australia, a board on the roof, freefall rig behind him, and a beautiful young backpacker at his side. But when he witnesses on TV the massacre of children in a terrorist siege on the other side of the world, long-suppressed memories are triggered and Nick finds himself catapulted once more into working for the American secret services — only this time, of his own free will.

As events unfold in the bleak, medieval villages of Azerbajhan, and the teeming streets of modern Istanbul, it isn’t long before Nick discovers the true objective of the mission on which he has embarked. His talents are being misused by those who stalk the corridors of power, and he is determined to make a stand.

Hurtled at breakneck pace through a deadly landscape of greed, violence and ever-shifting allegiances, the reader will be left in no doubt that McNab is the master of the genre — and Aggressor is McNab at his searing, blockbusting best.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Agents of Light and Darkness

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Agents of Light and Darkness (Nightside Series #2) by Simon R. Green
****“Simon Green’s Nightside is a macabre and thoroughly entertaining world.”**—#1 *New York Times *bestselling author Jim Butcher*
***John Taylor works in the Nightside—the gaudy, neon noir, secret heart of London, where it’s always three in the morning, where gods and monsters make deals and seek pleasures they won’t find anywhere else. He has a gift for finding things. And sometimes what he’s hired to locate can be very, very dangerous indeed.

Right now, for example, he’s searching for The Unholy Grail, the cup that Judas drank from at the Last Supper. It corrupts all who touch it—but it also gives enormous power. So he’s not the only one hunting. Angels, devils, sinners and saints—they’re all out there, tearing apart The Nightside, seeking the dark goblet.

And it’s only a matter of time until they realize that the famous John Taylor, the man with the gift for finding things, can lead them straight to it…

Age of Chivalry Or Legends of King Arthur

SUMMARY: It is believed that this presentation of a literature which held unrivaled sway over the imaginations of our ancestors, for many centuries, will not be without benefit to the reader, in addition to the amusement it may afford. Found within are the tales of King Arthur and His Knights, The Mabinogeon, Crusades – Robin Hood, and Knights of English History.

Agahta Christie: An autobiography

EDITORIAL REVIEW: A new-look printing of Agatha Christie’s ‘most absorbing mystery’ to mark the 25th anniversary of her death. Agatha Christie died on 12 January 1976, having become the best-selling novelist in history. Her autobiography, published in 1977 a year after her death, tells of her fascinating private life, from early childhood through two marriages and two World Wars, and her experiences both as a writer and on archaeological expeditions with her second husband, Max Mallowan. Not only does the book reveal the true genius of her legendary success, but the story is vividly told and as captivating as one of her novels.

Aftershock

# 1 *New York Times* Bestselling Author
Sylvia Day
America’s premier author of provocative fiction delivers the dramatic finale to a series set within the inner circle of glamour, sex and privilege.
When it came to playing games, my lover, Jax, was a master strategist. He pulled strings behind the closed doors of D.C.’s most powerful political players and somehow still found time to nearly sideline my career. What he didn’t know was that when I didn’t like the rules, I threw them out and made my own. I wasn’t going to let Jax get away with it. I wasn’t going to let him get away at all.
I loved Jax enough that it was impossible to give up. Jax loved me enough that giving up was the only end he’d consider. He didn’t think I could swim with the sharks. It was entirely my pleasure to show him that I’d already dived in….

Afternoon Delight

Afternoon Delight by Mia Zachary
Rei Davis has earned a reputation for being a man-eater in the courtroom- where she’s not afraid to issue harsh decisions- but an ice princess in the bedroom- where she’s afraid to ask for what she wants. A one-year breast cancer survivor, Rei believes she has a second chance so she ‘s not going to waste any of the time she’d been given. She’s determined to fulfill as many items on her Life List as she can, including seducing a sexy stranger. At a nightclub, she does a little dirty dancing with a hot blond that leads to even hotter kisses up on the darkened balcony. But as much as Rei enjoys the moment of abandon, fantasies need to remain just that.
Chris London is a success professionally- he runs Lunch Meetings, the hottest dating service in San Francisco and most of his clients have found their happily-ever-after. Personally, though, he can’t seem to make a relationship last longer than a month. When his father walked out, he’d shattered any illusions Chris had about love and marriage. He’s pleasantly surprised when Rei calls him to finish what they started. They meet at a hotel where they agree there will be no strings or complications. Afterwards, he doesn’t really expect to see her again. So he’s stunned when Rei walks into Lunch Meetings. The compatibility software declares Rei and Chris a perfect match, but can he convince Rei that they have a future together?
Superior Court Commissioner Rei Davis is a tough-minded judge who wishes someone could see her softer side. Dating service owner Chris London is a light-hearted matchmaker who wishes someone would take him seriously. With the help of email messages, fantasies brought to life and a leap of faith, maybe both of their wishes will come true.

Afterlight

EDITORIAL REVIEW: Human civilisation as we know it has ended. What next? The world lies devastated after the massive oil crisis that was described in LAST LIGHT. Human society has more or less entirely broken down and millions lie dead of starvation and disease. There are only one or two beacon communities that have managed to fashion a new way of living.Jenny Sutherland runs one of these groups. Based on a series of decaying offshore oil-rigs – for safety – a few hundred people have rebuilt a semblance of normality in this otherwise dead world.But as she and her people start to explore their surroundings once again, they start to realise not every survivor has the same vision of a better future than their catastrophic past. There are people out there who would take everything they have. War is coming, and the stakes are truly massive…

Afterlife: The Resurrection Chronicles

SUMMARY: Welcome to your next chance. Chaz Dominguez is a professional Babysitter in New Orleans, helping to integrate the recently deceased into their new and improved lives. Though Fresh Start has always been the only game in town, resurrection isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Nine lives are all a person can get—and a powerful group of desperate, high-level Nine-Timers will stop at nothing to possess the keys to true immortality. Now the only hope for Chaz and his family—and the human race—lies in the secrets locked away in the mind of Angelique, the beautiful, mysterious Newbie he must protect . . .

After the quake: stories

Amazon.com Review

Haruki Murakami, a writer both mystical and hip, is the West’s favorite Japanese novelist. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Murakami lived abroad until 1995. That year, two disasters struck Japan: the lethal earthquake in Kobe and the deadly poison gas attacks in the Tokyo subway. Spurred by these tragic events, Murakami returned home. The stories in After the Quake are set in the months that fell between the earthquake and the subway attack, presenting a world marked by despair, hope, and a kind of human instinct for transformation. A teenage girl and a middle-aged man share a hobby of making beach bonfires; a businesswoman travels to Thailand and, quietly, confronts her own death; three friends act out a modern-day Tokyo version of __. There’s a surreal element running through the collection in the form of unlikely frogs turning up in unlikely places. News of the earthquake hums throughout. The book opens with the dull buzz of disaster-watching: “Five straight days she spent in front of the television, staring at the crumbled banks and hospitals, whole blocks of stores in flames, severed rail lines and expressways.” With language that’s never self-consciously lyrical or show-offy, Murakami constructs stories as tight and beautiful as poems. There’s no turning back for his people; there’s only before and after the quake. –Claire Dederer

From Publishers Weekly

These six stories, all loosely connected to the disastrous 1995 earthquake in Kobe, are Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle; Norwegian Wood) at his best. The writer, who returned to live in Japan after the Kobe earthquake, measures his country’s suffering and finds reassurance in the inevitability that love will surmount tragedy, mustering his casually elegant prose and keen sense of the absurd in the service of healing. In “Honey Pie,” Junpei, a gentle, caring man, loses his would-be sweetheart, Sayoko, when his aggressive best friend, Takatsuki, marries her. They have a child, Sala. He remains close friends with them and becomes even closer after they divorce, but still cannot bring himself to declare his love for Sayoko. Sala is traumatized by the quake and Junpei concocts a wonderful allegorical tale to ease her hurt and give himself the courage to reveal his love for Sayoko. In “UFO in Kushiro” the horrors of the quake inspire a woman to leave her perfectly respectable and loving husband, Komura, because “you have nothing inside you that you can give me.” Komura then has a surreal experience that more or less confirms his wife’s assessment. The theme of nothingness is revisited in the powerful “Thailand,” in which a female doctor who is on vacation in Thailand and very bitter after a divorce, encounters a mysterious old woman who tells her “There is a stone inside your body…. You must get rid of the stone. Otherwise, after you die and are cremated, only the stone will remain.” The remaining stories are of equal quality, the characters fully developed and memorable. Murakami has created a series of small masterpieces.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

After the quake: stories

Amazon.com Review

Haruki Murakami, a writer both mystical and hip, is the West’s favorite Japanese novelist. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Murakami lived abroad until 1995. That year, two disasters struck Japan: the lethal earthquake in Kobe and the deadly poison gas attacks in the Tokyo subway. Spurred by these tragic events, Murakami returned home. The stories in After the Quake are set in the months that fell between the earthquake and the subway attack, presenting a world marked by despair, hope, and a kind of human instinct for transformation. A teenage girl and a middle-aged man share a hobby of making beach bonfires; a businesswoman travels to Thailand and, quietly, confronts her own death; three friends act out a modern-day Tokyo version of __. There’s a surreal element running through the collection in the form of unlikely frogs turning up in unlikely places. News of the earthquake hums throughout. The book opens with the dull buzz of disaster-watching: “Five straight days she spent in front of the television, staring at the crumbled banks and hospitals, whole blocks of stores in flames, severed rail lines and expressways.” With language that’s never self-consciously lyrical or show-offy, Murakami constructs stories as tight and beautiful as poems. There’s no turning back for his people; there’s only before and after the quake. –Claire Dederer

From Publishers Weekly

These six stories, all loosely connected to the disastrous 1995 earthquake in Kobe, are Murakami (The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle; Norwegian Wood) at his best. The writer, who returned to live in Japan after the Kobe earthquake, measures his country’s suffering and finds reassurance in the inevitability that love will surmount tragedy, mustering his casually elegant prose and keen sense of the absurd in the service of healing. In “Honey Pie,” Junpei, a gentle, caring man, loses his would-be sweetheart, Sayoko, when his aggressive best friend, Takatsuki, marries her. They have a child, Sala. He remains close friends with them and becomes even closer after they divorce, but still cannot bring himself to declare his love for Sayoko. Sala is traumatized by the quake and Junpei concocts a wonderful allegorical tale to ease her hurt and give himself the courage to reveal his love for Sayoko. In “UFO in Kushiro” the horrors of the quake inspire a woman to leave her perfectly respectable and loving husband, Komura, because “you have nothing inside you that you can give me.” Komura then has a surreal experience that more or less confirms his wife’s assessment. The theme of nothingness is revisited in the powerful “Thailand,” in which a female doctor who is on vacation in Thailand and very bitter after a divorce, encounters a mysterious old woman who tells her “There is a stone inside your body…. You must get rid of the stone. Otherwise, after you die and are cremated, only the stone will remain.” The remaining stories are of equal quality, the characters fully developed and memorable. Murakami has created a series of small masterpieces.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

After the prophet: the epic story of the Shia-Sunni split in Islam

SUMMARY: Narrative history at its most compelling, “After the Prophet” relates the dramatic tragic story at the heart of the ongoing rivalry between Shia and Sunni Islam. Even as Muhammad lay dying, the battle over his successor had begun. Pitting the family of his favorite wife, the controversial Aisha, against supporters of his son-in-law, the philosopher-warrior Ali, the struggle would reach its breaking point fifty years later in Iraq, when soldiers of the first Sunni dynasty massacred seventy-two warriors led by Muhammad’s grandson Hussein at Karbala. Hussein’s agonizing ordeal at Karbala was soon to become the Passion story at the core of Shia Islam. Hazleton’s vivid, gripping prose provides extraordinary insight into the origins of the world’s most volatile blend of politics and religion. Balancing past and present, she shows how these seventh-century events are as alive in Middle Eastern hearts and minds today as though they had just happened, shaping modern headlines from Iran’s Islamic Revolution to the civil war in Iraq. “After the Prophet” is narrative nonfiction at its finest, and an emotional and political revelation for Western readers.

After the fire, a still small voice

EDITORIAL REVIEW: Set in the haunting landscape of eastern Australia, this is a stunningly accomplished debut novel about the inescapable past: the ineffable ties of family, the wars fought by fathers and sons, and what goes unsaid.After the departure of the woman he loves, Frank drives out to a shack by the ocean that he had last visited as a teenager. There, among the sugarcane and sand dunes, he struggles to rebuild his life.Forty years earlier, Leon is growing up in Sydney, turning out treacle tarts at his parents’ bakery and flirting with one of the local girls. But when he’s drafted to serve in Vietnam, he finds himself suddenly confronting the same experiences that haunt his war-veteran father.As these two stories weave around each other–each narrated in a voice as tender as it is fierce–we learn what binds Frank and Leon together, and what may end up keeping them apart.

After the Fall

Amazon.com Review

Kylie Ladd on After the Fall

Whenever I meet someone new and they ask me about my occupation I always reply that I’m a psychologist. It’s true. I’m a clinical neuropsychologist, to be precise, with a Ph.D. in the field and fifteen years’ experience working in both the public and private sectors. What I fail to mention–mostly because I still can’t quite believe that it’s true, and I’m stupidly afraid that saying it out loud will make it disappear–is that I’m also a writer.

I never planned to study psychology. At the time it simply seemed like a good compromise between the medical degree my parents wanted me to do and the arts degree I was keener on, but now I realize what a great fit it was. I have always been fascinated by people, and more specifically how we become who we are and why we make the choices we do. I’m also–as is true for most writers–rather a voyeur. Psychology gave me the tools to observe others; writing gives me the reason to do so.

Psychology has also helped me understand something I think every writer needs to grasp: that “story” is a fluid concept, depending wholly on perspective. In the clinic where I work, part of my role is to take a history from both the client and a member of his or her family. Though I have been doing so for many years, the process still has the power to surprise, given how differently the same events can be perceived and experienced by different people. It seems there is always some fresh way for us to love or hate, to accommodate or alienate each other; there are at least two sides to every story. Listening to my patients and their families gave me the idea for the narrative structure of After The Fall, where four main characters take turns at telling their side of a shared story.

Now that both my children are in school, I write three days a week and practice as a psychologist for two–but the distinction is often blurred. When I write, I am using the resources that psychology has given me; when I am seeing a client I am simultaneously alert for what I can learn from them about being human. In both cases, I am listening for story–the stories that explain and define us all.

From Publishers Weekly

Neuropsychologist Ladd’s flat debut is narrated by four Australians who make three pairs: Cary and Kate, and Luke and Cressida, two married couples—and Kate and Luke, who fall headlong into an affair that could have big consequences. Cary is a chivalrous doctor who desperately wants children, while his impetuous wife, Kate, an anthropologist, is the lusty life of every party. Then there’s Luke, the dashing ad man everyone falls in love with, and Cressida, his beautiful pediatrician wife, who is more dedicated to her patients than to her personal life. Short, snappy chapters alternate between the voices of these characters, building the story of the two marriages and the infidelity that dismantles them. Ladd can turn a phrase and spin a metaphor, but the characters are too thin to sustain sympathy, and little is done to find a new angle on the familiar setup of desire and adultery. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

After Midnight

From Publishers Weekly

Although Laymon died in 2001, his U.K. novels have only recently gotten an American release; this 1997 title is a sordid, flawed gem, both stomach churning and erotic, and not infrequently at the same time. Narrated by paranoid, defiant 26-year-old Alice, the book opens on a peaceful night of house-sitting—but as Alice warns, “You can never be sure it’s safe.” Indeed, shortly after midnight she spots a strange man emerge from the woods and go swimming naked in the family pool. A fortunately timed phone call that’s a wrong number gives Alice the chance to drive off the stranger, but sets in motion a 24-hour whirlwind of murder, terror and madness, beginning when Alice splits open someone’s head with a Civil War saber—and escalating precipitously from there. Alice’s matter-of-fact attitude toward her grisly handiwork can make her hard to sympathize with (“I felt rotten about killing him, but not particularly guilty”); supporting characters are easier to like, but don’t get too attached. As the night wears on, Laymon piles on gory details and violent sex with perverse, over-the-top glee; it’s definitely not for everyone and can strain credibility, but Alice proves to be one of Laymon’s most original and memorable protagonists, and should keep hardened horror fans reading well past the stroke of midnight. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Product Description

When Alice’s friend Serena goes away she stays in her house, with its sunken bathtub and big-screen TV. Best of all is the outdoor swimming pool. But one night a stranger walks out of the woods and jumps naked into the pool. Alice hopes he won’t be coming to get her, like so many have done before.

After dark

From Publishers Weekly

Murakami’s 12th work of fiction is darkly entertaining and more novella than novel. Taking place over seven hours of a Tokyo night, it intercuts three loosely related stories, linked by Murakami’s signature magical-realist absurd coincidences. When amateur trombonist and soon-to-be law student Tetsuya Takahashi walks into a late-night Denny’s, he espies Mari Asai, 19, sitting by herself, and proceeds to talk himself back into her acquaintance. Tetsuya was once interested in plain Mari’s gorgeous older sister, Eri, whom he courted, sort of, two summers previously. Murakami then cuts to Eri, asleep in what turns out to be some sort of menacing netherworld. Tetsuya leaves for overnight band practice, but soon a large, 30ish woman, Kaoru, comes into Denny’s asking for Mari: Mari speaks Chinese, and Kaoru needs to speak to the Chinese prostitute who has just been badly beaten up in the nearby “love hotel” Kaoru manages. Murakami’s omniscient looks at the lives of the sleeping Eri and the prostitute’s assailant, a salaryman named Shirakawa, are sheer padding, but the probing, wonderfully improvisational dialogues Mari has with Tetsuya, Kaoru and a hotel worker named Korogi sustain the book until the ambiguous, mostly upbeat dénouement. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From

Other than an unexpected cheerfulness, After Dark is classic Haruki Murakami, featuring themes of loneliness and alienation, carefully crafted characters, Western references (such as an all-night Denny’s where Hall & Oates plays in the background), and distinctive magical-realist twists of fate. Critics also praised the impassive, omniscient narration, like a constantly shifting video camera, which renders each scene in magnificent detail. The chief complaint was the brevity of the novel, and the Los Angeles Times felt that Eri’s dreamlike scenes missed the mark as well. “For the unfamiliar, it’s the perfect appetizer. For the established fan, it’s a quick work that is over far too soon” (_Denver Post_).

Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

Aesop’s Fables

SUMMARY: Aesop’s Fables, by Aesop, is part of the Barnes & Noble Classics series, which offers quality editions at affordable prices to the student and the general reader, including new scholarship, thoughtful design, and pages of carefully crafted extras. Here are some of the remarkable features of Barnes & Noble Classics: New introductions commissioned from today’s top writers and scholars Biographies of the authors Chronologies of contemporary historical, biographical, and cultural events Footnotes and endnotes Selective discussions of imitations, parodies, poems, books, plays, paintings, operas, statuary, and films inspired by the work Comments by other famous authors Study questions to challenge the reader’s viewpoints and expectations Bibliographies for further reading Indices & Glossaries, when appropriateAll editions are beautifully designed and are printed to superior specifications; some include illustrations of historical interest. Barnes & Noble Classics pulls together a constellation of influences—biographical, historical, and literary—to enrich each reader’s understanding of these enduring works. As legend has it, the storyteller Aesop was a slave who lived in ancient Greece during the sixth century B.C. His memorable, recountable fables have brought amusing characters to life and driven home thought-provoking morals for generations of listeners and modern-day readers. Translated into countless languages and familiar to people around the world, Aesop’s fables never tarnish despite being told again and again. This collection presents nearly 300 of Aesop’s most entertaining and enduring stories—from “The Hare and the Tortoise” and “The Town Mouse and the Country Mouse” to “The Goose That Laid the Golden Eggs” and “The Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing.” Populated by a colorful array of animal characters who personify every imaginable human type—from fiddling grasshoppers and diligent ants to sly foxes, wicked wolves, brave mice, and grateful lions—these timeless tales are as fresh and relevant today as when they were first created. Full of humor, insight, and wit, the tales in Aesop’s Fables champion the value of hard work and perseverance, compassion for others, and honesty. They are age-old wisdom in a delicious form, for the consumption of adults and children alike.D. L. Ashliman is emeritus professor at the University of Pittsburgh. He taught folklore, mythology, German, and comparative literature at that institution for thirty-one years. He has also served as guest professor at the University of Augsburg in Germany.