Displaying articles for: April 2012

The Stalker Chronicles

Cammie Bliss has been branded by her classmates as a stalker, a reputation that's hard to shake in a town so small the only movie theater closed a generation ago. But when Toby shows up in his dark-framed glasses, Cammie knows he's just her type. Don't be fooled by the shiny pink cover: Carley Moore's debut novel is filled with quirks, compulsions, and hilariously inappropriate behavior.

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The Lives of Things

A collection of dazzling early fables from the Nobel Laureate's pen.

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When Captain Flint Was a Good Man

Fans of Deadliest Catch will be drawn to the arresting story of an Alaskan boyhood growing up in the shadow of the men who fish the treacherous Bering Sea.  But the piratical joys of Treasure Island also cast a spell over Nick Dybek's bewitching, ocean-haunted tale.

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Midnight in Peking

Cases don't come much colder than this --the year was 1937, and as Japanese forces closed in on what is now Beijing, the teenage daughter of an expatriate Englishman was found,  horribly murdered, in a neighborhood abutting the city's opium dens.  War brushed the investigation aside, and Pamela Werner's killer was never found.  Now Paul French picks up the trail in an atmospheric work of history and detection.

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Magic Hours

Tom Bissell ponders creators, their creations, and the toll that creativity takes.  From Herzog's films to a sitcom set -- and on to the world of a novelist who became an icon for a generation, these essays infectiously transmit the passion shared by the writer and his subjects.

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The Coldest Night

Robert Olmstead's breathtaking coming-of-age story is subtitled "A Novel of Love and War" and with good reason: Henry Childs' unforgettable first love and nearly unendurable trial-by-combat in one of the Korean War's most harrowing battles are captured in a revelatory language -- and implanted in a story as suspenseful as it is true to the extremes of human experience.

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A Natural Woman

From her working-class Brooklyn childhood to success as a Brill Building hitmaker and her later rise to stardom with the legendary album Tapestry, Carole King takes readers through a career of exhilarating highs and profound lows. Her meditations on motherhood, music, and marriage are revealing, and she delivers an insider's perspective on the industry and the many musical talents who became colleagues, partners, rivals and lovers.

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Dust to Dust

Iraq War veteran Benjamin Busch reflects on a childhood spent roaming rural New York and how that pastoral upbringing led to a career in the US Marine Corps where he witnessed violence and death during two combat tours at the height of sectarian violence. Like the work of Tim O'Brien and Karl Marlantes, this book is a moving account of confronting mortality framed in elemental chapters: water, metal, blood, bone.

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Dreaming in French

For three extraordinary young women -- Jacqueline Bouvier, Susan Sontag, and Angela Davis -- living abroad in Paris in the years after World War II was a transformative experience. Alice Kaplan offers readers a unique perspective on the hopes and ambitions of these influential figures as their world views were shaped by their time in the City of Light.

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June Fourth Elegies

This, the first English-language publication of the poetry of 2010 Nobel Peace Prize Winner Liu Xiaobo, commemorates fallen comrades killed during the Tiananmen Square Massacre on June 4, 1989 and looks to the current state of human rights in China, a country "used to memorializing tombs as palaces." With Liu currently serving an eleven-year sentence for "incitement to subvert state power," opportunites to read his work should be cherished and celebrated.

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I Am an Executioner

A tiger mauls his handler out of affection. A woman prepares Thanksgiving dinner with her husband sprawled dead on the floor. A man, the executioner of the title, seeks to assure his new wife that he's not a bad person. The characters in Rajesh Parameswaran's stories navigate the uncertain ground between love and death, where passion and violence meet and meld. A daring debut told in the author's charged, poetic style.

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Mudwoman

The new novel by Joyce Carol Oates explores the high price of professional success in the life of one woman, M. R. The first female president of an Ivy League university, she has lofty goals for changing the academic climate on campus, but her ambition clashes with the militaristic post-9/11 political environment. And all the while, the Mudgirl lurks in her past. Oates combines richly observed descriptions and a burgeoning sense of dread to engrossing effect.

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A Pocket Guide to Vietnam, 1962

This surprisingly timeless text reprints the original document issued by the US Department of Defense to Americans traveling to Vietnam as part of the effort to prevent the global spread of Communism. Brimming with straightforward advice ("You will fulfill your duty best by remembering at all times that you are in a land where dignity, restraint, and politeness are highly regarded."), the book illuminates recent history and an ancient culture.

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This Love Is Not For Cowards

Perched on the border across from El Paso, Ciudad Juárez has been buffeted by Mexico's narco war for years, but that hasn't stopped the city from embracing its hometown soccer team, the Indios, and their fervent fanbase, El Kartel. In this gritty account of a single season, Robert Andrew Powell travels the country with the team and reflects on a nation torn asunder by drug-related violence -- yet united in its love of sport.

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The Grey Album

Award-winning poet Kevin Young takes a journey through our nation's history using the art of the remix to illuminate the African-American heart of the American experience. Combining essays, cultural criticism, and lyrical choruses with appraisals of authors from Langston Hughes to Colson Whitehead, the resulting work of nonfiction is a whirlwind tour of storytelling, music, and artistic expression.

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Paris in Love

Bestselling romance novelist (and B&N Review columnist) Eloisa James and her family relocated to the City of Light for a year of beauty and self-discovery -- and they weren't disappointed. But her dream-come-true sabbatical required some significant adjustments recounted in this warmly funny and devastatingly honest memoir.

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Derby Day

Shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, D. J. Taylor's novel captures the Victorian passion for horse racing, as enthusiasts from every walk of life converge on Epsom Down one summer. Much rides on the performance of proven winner Tiberius, but "sporting gentleman" George Happerton secretly wants his horse to lose so that he can win big at the betting window. A gripping tale rife with romance and rivalry, period detail and Dickensian scope.

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Wolf

Garry Marvin's entry in Reaktion's Animal series, each of which explores the historical significance of a particular creature, addresses the big bad wolf. Though it wasn't always so. Early hunter-gatherer societies revered the wolf. But with the domesticization of livestock, Canis lupus became a feared adversary. Marvin traces the animal's impact on human society and concludes with the wolf's recent reemergence as a totem of the swiftly-disappearing wilderness.

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The American Way of Eating

The farmer's market aside, do you know where the grapes on your table came from? And how many people toiled to put them there? Tracie McMillan takes a Nickel and Dimed approach as she works the fields, the supermarket aisles, and the fast-food kitchens that feed America to examine our national dietary priorities. Hard-hitting, piquant reporting at its best.

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July 22: On this day in 1941, on his twelfth wedding anniversary, Eugene O'Neill presented the just-finished manuscript of Long Day's Journey into Night to his wife, Carlotta.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

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