Fire Monks

If a flaming tree falls in the forest, does anybody panic? Not if the onlookers are Zen Buddhist monks. When wildfires threatened their mountain home in 2008, five California monks saved the oldest Zen monastery in the U.S. by guiding the flames as one would an old but unruly friend. Colleen Morton Busch's riveting account is an astonishing portrait of courage under fire, and the power of mindfulness in the face of crisis.

April 18: "[W]ould it be too bold to imagine that all warm-blooded animals have arisen from one living filament…?"

Donna Tartt's The Goldfinch is the winner of the 2014 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. James Parker calls this Dickensian coming-of-age novel "an enveloping…