12 Dec 2012
in New Books
Tags: bipolar, camping, fiction, Holocaust, killers, list, mental illness, nonfiction, Oprah Club, saga, short stories, stories, trivia, warnings, wwII
The Twelve Tribes of Hattie (Oprah’s Book Club 2.0)
In 1923, fifteen-year-old Hattie Shepherd flees Georgia and settles in Philadelphia, hoping for a chance at a better life. Instead, she marries a man who will bring her nothing but disappointment and watches helplessly as her firstborn twins succumb to an illness a few pennies could have prevented. Hattie gives birth to nine more children whom she raises with grit and mettle and not an ounce of the tenderness they crave. She vows to prepare them for the calamitous difficulty they are sure to face in their later lives, to meet a world that will not love them, a world that will not be kind. Captured here in twelve luminous narrative threads, their lives tell the story of a mother’s monumental courage and the journey of a nation.
By Joy Fielding
Due to a last-minute change in plans, a group of unlikely traveling companions finds themselves on a camping trip in the Adirondacks. They include the soon-to-be-divorced Valerie; her oddball friends, Melissa and James; her moody teenage daughter, Brianne; and Val’s estranged husband’s fiancée, Jennifer. What Val and her companions don’t know is that a pair of crazed killers is wreaking havoc in the very same woods. When an elderly couple is found slaughtered and Brianne goes missing, Val finds herself in a nightmare much worse than anything she could have anticipated. She was half-expecting it to be the trip from hell, but what she never could have predicted was that this impromptu little excursion might be the last she ever takes.
A Possible Life: A Novel in Five Parts
By Sebastian Faulks
Five interconnected stories form the heart of this book. The links between Jones’ stories are subtle and curious; a name might re-appear in a different context, or a location will feature again, but at a different time or with different people. This novel journeys across continents and time to explore the chaos created by love, separation and missed opportunities. From the pain and drama of these highly particular lives emerges a mysterious consolation: the chance to feel your heart beat in someone else’s life. Soldiers and lovers, parents and children, scientists and musicians risk their bodies and hearts in search of connection – some key to understanding what makes us the people we become.
Too Bright to Hear Too Loud to See
Greyson Todd is a successful Hollywood studio executive who leaves his wife and young daughter and for a decade travels the world giving free reign to the bipolar disorder he’s been forced to keep hidden for almost 20 years. The novel intricately weaves together three timelines: the story of Greyson’s travels (Rome, Israel, Santiago, Thailand, Uganda); the progressive unraveling of his own father seen through Greyson’s eyes as a child; and the intimacies and estrangements of his marriage. The entire narrative unfolds in the time it takes him to undergo twelve 30-second electroshock treatments in a New York psychiatric ward.
Promises to Keep
by Malcolm Macdonald
Despite concerns on the national and international stage, life for the ambitious nine young families who live in the Dower House, including concentration camp survivor Felix Breit, his wife Angela and their four children, is good. But when a menacing figure from Angela’s past turns up – a former death camp guard who was especially brutal to her – it becomes clear that both Angela and Felix will have to face up to the truth of their German heritage if they are to embrace their English future.
Because I Said So!: The Truth Behind the Myths, Tales, and Warnings Every Generation Passes Down to Its Kids
By Ken Jennings
Ken Jennings wants to find out if mother and father always know best. Yes, all those years you were told not to sit too close to the television (you’ll hurt your eyes!) or swallow your gum (it stays in your stomach for seven years!) or crack your knuckles (arthritis!) are called into question by our country’s leading trivia guru. Jennings separates myth from fact to debunk a wide variety of parental edicts: no swimming after meals, sit up straight, don’t talk to strangers, and so on. Armed with medical case histories, scientific findings, and even the occasional experiment on himself (or his kids), Jennings exposes countless examples of parental wisdom run amok. Whether you’re a parent who wants to know what you can stop worrying about or a kid (of any age) looking to say, “I told you so,” this is the anti–helicopter parenting book you’ve been waiting for.
14 Nov 2012
in New Books
Tags: diagnosis, espionage, fiction, hospital, illness, list, madness, miracle, murder, mystery, near death experiences, nonfiction, schizophrenia
Brain on Fire: My Month of Madness
By Susannah Cahalan
Susannah Cahalan tells the astonishing true story of her inexplicable descent into madness and the brilliant, lifesaving diagnosis that nearly didn’t happen. A team of doctors would spend a month—and more than a million dollars—trying desperately to pin down a medical explanation for what had gone wrong. Meanwhile, as the days passed and her family, boyfriend, and friends helplessly stood watch by her bed, she began to move inexorably through psychosis into catatonia and, ultimately, toward death. Then, at the last minute, celebrated neurologist Souhel Najjar joined her team and, with the help of a lucky, ingenious test, saved her life. He recognized the symptoms of a newly discovered autoimmune disorder in which the body attacks the brain, a disease now thought to be tied to both schizophrenia and autism, and perhaps the root of “demonic possessions” throughout history.
By Barbara Kingsolver
Dellarobia Turnbow has spent more than a decade tending to her small children on a failing farm, oppressed by poverty, isolation and her husband’s antagonistic family. She eases her boredom by flirting with a handsome younger man and arranging to meet up with him. But the tryst never happens. Instead, she walks into something on the mountainside she cannot explain or understand: a forested valley filled with silent red fire that appears to her a miracle. After years lived entirely in the confines of one small house, Dellarobia finds her path suddenly opening out, chapter by chapter, into blunt and confrontational engagement with her family, her church, her town, her continent, and finally the world at large.
By David Baldacci
Army Special Agent John Puller is the best investigator for the US Army. Now he has a new case-but this time, the crime is personal: His aunt has been found dead in Paradise, Florida. The local police have ruled his aunt’s death an unfortunate, tragic accident. But just before she died, she mailed a letter to Puller’s father, telling him that beneath its beautiful veneer, Paradise is not all it seems to be. What Puller finds convinces him that his aunt’s death was no accident . . . and that the palm trees and sandy beaches of Paradise may hide a conspiracy so shocking that some will go to unthinkable lengths to make sure the truth is never revealed.
By Marjorie Eccles
Lady Emily Fitzallan has returned to the country house where she spent her childhood for a family wedding. Leysmorton Manor brings back many memories, especially of her elder sister Clare, who vanished one day after going for a walk, never to return. But the disturbing discovery of a soldier’s skeleton at the base of an ancient Yew tree brings the past shockingly into the present. Could the man’s untimely death have its roots in Clare’s disappearance, which occurred almost half a century ago . . .?
By Ian McEwan
Cambridge student Serena Frome’s beauty and intelligence make her the ideal recruit for MI5. The year is 1972. The Cold War is far from over. England’s legendary intelligence agency is determined to manipulate the cultural conversation by funding writers whose politics align with those of the government. The operation is code named “Sweet Tooth.” Serena, a compulsive reader of novels, is the perfect candidate to infiltrate the literary circle of a promising young writer named Tom Haley. At first, she loves his stories. Then she begins to love the man. How long can she conceal her undercover life? To answer that question, Serena must abandon the first rule of espionage: trust no one.
By William Paul Young, author of the bestselling novel “The Shack”
Anthony Spencer is egotistical, proud of being a self-made business success at the peak of his game, even though the cost of winning was painfully high. A cerebral hemorrhage leaves Tony comatose in a hospital ICU. He ‘awakens’ to find himself in a surreal world, a ‘living’ landscape that mirrors dimensions of his earthly life, from the beautiful to the corrupt. It is here that he has vivid interactions with others he assumes are projections of his own subconscious, but whose directions he follows nonetheless with the possibility that they might lead to authenticity and perhaps, redemption. The adventure draws Tony into deep relational entanglements where he is able to ‘see’ through the literal eyes and experiences of others, but is “blind” to the consequences of hiding his personal agenda and loss that emerge to war against the processes of healing and trust. Will this unexpected coalescing of events cause Tony to examine his life and realize he built a house of cards on the poisoned grounds of a broken heart? Will he also have the courage to make a critical choice that can undo a major injustice he set in motion before falling into a coma?
17 Oct 2012
in New Books
Tags: attack, Auschwitz, Civil War, faith, fiction, historical fiction, horror, justice, list, murder, mystery, Native American, Project Linus, quilt, quilters, singing, thriller, wwII
All Things New
In the aftermath of the Civil War, Josephine Weatherly and her mother, Eugenia, struggle to pick up the pieces of their lives when they return to their Virginia plantation. But the bitter realities of life after the war cannot be denied: their home and land are but shells of their previous grandeur; death has claimed her father and brother; and her remaining brother, Daniel, has returned home bitter and broken. The privileged childhood Josephine enjoyed now seems like a long-ago dream. And the God who failed to answer any of her prayers during the war is lost to her as well. Josephine soon realizes that life is now a matter of daily survival–and recognizes that Lizzie, as one of the few remaining servants, is the one she must rely on to teach her all she needs to know. Josephine’s mother, too, vows to rebuild White Oak…but a bitter hatred fuels her.
Piero Degli Antoni
When three prisoners escape from Auschwitz, 10 others are selected for execution. The commandant gives them an impossible choice. Choose from among themselves a single sacrifice to be killed, and the other nine will live. He gives them 24 hours to decide which one of them shall be shot. Disease and desperation whittle their numbers, before being bolstered by new prisoners. Then he shortens the time the prisoners have to reach a decision. The prisoners continue to argue on their own behalf, until settling upon an audacious solution. Who will live and who will die in this untenable situation?
The Giving Quilt
Post-Thanksgiving at Elm Creek Manor, aspiring -quilters are enjoying a special winter session of quilt camp. When Sylvia asks the participants in Quiltsgiving, a post-Thanksgiving weeklong get-together, why they quilt and why they give, their answers point to personal tragedies and triumphs, reminding readers of the powers of generosity and friendship. From widowhood, to library closures, or physical injuries, each woman has her own challenges. Despite the particulars of each obstacle or victory, these women find encouragement in one another, and as they quilt, they stitch together their strengths to cope with individual struggles.
Given the importance of what they do, and the controversies that often surround them, and the violent people they sometimes confront, it is remarkable that in the history of this country only four active federal judges have been murdered. Judge Raymond Fawcett has just become number five. Malcolm Bannister, also known as the Racketeer, former attorney and current prison inmate, knows who killed Judge Fawcett, and he knows why. The judge’s body was found in his remote lakeside cabin. There was no forced entry, no struggle, just two dead bodies: Judge Fawcett and his young secretary. And one large, state-of-the-art, extremely secure safe, opened and emptied. What was in the safe? The FBI would love to know. And Malcolm Bannister would love to tell them. But everything has a price—especially information as explosive as the sequence of events that led to Judge Fawcett’s death. And the Racketeer wasn’t born yesterday . . .
The Round House
One Sunday in the spring of 1988, a woman living on a reservation in North Dakota is attacked. The details of the crime are slow to surface as Geraldine Coutts is traumatized and reluctant to relive or reveal what happened either to the police or to her husband, Bazil, and thirteen-year-old son, Joe. While his father, who is a tribal judge, endeavors to wrest justice from a situation that defies his efforts, Joe becomes frustrated with the official investigation and sets out with his trusted friends to get some answers on his own.
John Ajvide Lindqvist
A man finds a baby in the woods, left for dead. He brings the baby home, and he and his wife raise the girl in their basement. When a shocking and catastrophic incident occurs, the couple’s son Jerry whisks the girl away to Stockholm to start a new life. There, he enters her in a nationwide singing competition. Another young girl who’s never fit in sees the performance on TV, and a spark is struck that will ignite the most terrifying duo in modern fiction.
12 Sep 2012
in New Books
Tags: america, family, fiction, historical fiction, list, new
Band of Sisters
Maureen O’Reilly and her younger sister flee Ireland in hope of claiming the life promised to their father over twenty years before. After surviving the rigors of Ellis Island, Maureen learns that their benefactor, Colonel Wakefield, has died. His family, refusing to own his Civil War debt, casts her out. Alone, impoverished, and in danger of deportation, Maureen connives to obtain employment in a prominent department store. Despite her family’s disapproval, Olivia Wakefield determines to honor her father’s debt but can’t find Maureen. Unexpected help comes from a local businessman, whom Olivia begins to see as more than an ally, even as she fears the secrets he’s hiding. As women begin disappearing from the store, Olivia rallies influential ladies in her circle to help Maureen take a stand against injustice and fight for the lives of their growing band of sisters.
When Henry Hatten wangles a job as communications director for Nebraska SenatorTom Peele’s presidential campaign, he breathes a huge sigh of relief. Smarting over a recent gubernatorial campaign in which his pulling a political punch may have cost his boss the race, he’s thrilled to be back in action. This time around, Henry is determined to shuck his ethical qualms. But he soon finds he’s facing more than he imagined. The new gig turns out to be rife with scandal and corruption just the kind of politics Henry so fervently sought to banish. But when someone close to the campaign is murdered, Henry can no longer turn a blind eye. As he conducts his own covert investigation, still more secrets emerge. So deeply entrenched in the politics and manipulation, Henry must face a staggering reality in which his values are no longer his own.
The Forgetting Tree
When Claire Nagy marries Forster Baumsarg, the only son of prominent California citrus ranchers, she knows she’s consenting to a life of hard work, long days, and worry-fraught nights. She embraces the life of the ranch, succumbing to its intoxicating rhythms and bounty until her love of the land becomes a part of her. Not even the tragic, senseless death of her son Joshua at kidnappers’ hands, her alienation from her two daughters, or the dissolution of her once-devoted marriage can pull her from the ranch she’s devoted her life to preserving. But despite having survived the most terrible of tragedies, Claire is about to face her greatest struggle: an illness that threatens not only to rip her from her land but take her very life.
In Between Days
The Harding family is teetering on the brink. Elson-once one of Houston’s most promising architects-is recently divorced from his wife of thirty years, Cadence. Their grown son, Richard, is still living at home: driving his mother’s minivan, working at a local coffee shop, resisting the career as a writer that beckons him. But when Chloe Harding gets kicked out of her East Coast college, for reasons she can’t explain to either her parents or her older brother, and returns to Houston, the Hardings’ lives begin to unravel.
John Saturnall’s Feast
John Saturnall was tutored by his mother, an herbalist believed to be a witch, to assist her and understand the subtleties of the kitchen. Upon her death, John is dispatched to the estate of Sir William Fremantle, where his mother once worked. As he rises in the ranks from scullery boy to assistant master cook, he catches the eye of Sir William’s feisty daughter, Lucretia. When she is promised in marriage to the loathsome Piers Callock, whose family’s close connection will ensure the estate’s inheritance, she launches a hunger strike in protest. John is presented with the challenge of creating food that will persuade her to eat. The two fall in love, but the English Civil War ensues, and Lucretia is already promised in marriage.
Laura Lamont’s Life in Pictures
In 1920, Elsa Emerson is born in idyllic Door County, Wisconsin. Her family owns the Cherry County Playhouse, and more than anything, Elsa relishes appearing onstage. But when tragedy strikes her family, her acting becomes more than a child’s game of pretend. While still in her teens, Elsa marries and flees to Los Angeles. There she is discovered by Irving Green, one of the most powerful executives in Hollywood, who refashions her as a serious, exotic brunette and renames her Laura Lamont. Irving becomes Laura’s great love; she becomes an Academy Award-winning actress-and a genuine movie star. And she experiences all the glamour and extravagance of the heady pinnacle of stardom in the studio-system era, but ultimately her story is a timeless one of a woman trying to balance career, family, and personal happiness, all while remaining true to herself.
10 Aug 2012
in Movies, Subject Guide
Tags: August 9th, bankrupt, based on the book, battle, Book lover's day, books, business, catholic, concentration camps, corleone family, criminal, crockery factory, dark lord, death, Doctor Zhivago, elven-smiths, employed, fellowship of the ring, films, german army, government, hobbit, hunt for the red october, husband, jewish accountant, jews, life, list, Lord of the rings, lover, marries, middle-earth, movies, nazi commandant, one ring, oskar schindler, poet, prison camp, rings of power, Saturday Cinema, schindler's list, sicilian americans family life, soviet sub, surgeon, the godfather, the return of the king, the two towers, theory, Top books to film, u.s. coast, villa, war, war profiteer, What to Watch, woman
August 9th is Book Lover’s Day and here are some books to film movies.
Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring/ The Two Towers/The Return of the King (2001,2002, 2003) Rated PG-13
In ancient times the Rings of Power were crafted by the Elven-smiths, and Sauron, the Dark Lord, forged the One Ring, filling it with his own power so that he could rule all others. But the One Ring was taken from him, and though he sought it throughout Middle-Earth still it remained lost to him. After many ages it fell, by chance, into the hands of the Hobbit, Bilbo Baggins. On his eleventy-first birthday, Bilbo disappeared, bequeathing to his young cousin, Frodo, the Ruling Ring, and a perilous quest: to journey across Middle-Earth, deep into the shadow of the Dark Lord and destroy the Ring by casting it into the Cracks of Doom. Based on the book: Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring
Join Frodo, Gandalf, Aragorn, and brave members of the Fellowship as they continue their quest to destroy the Ring of Power. As darkness descends on Middle-earth, a strange creature named Gollum leads the heroes to the Black Gates of Mordor. The rest of Middle-earth prepares for a battle that will decide the fate of all. Based on the book : The Two Towers
Frodo makes his way through the darkness to Mount Doom to destroy the One Ring. Aragon learns of his destiny as the true King and the others prepare for a massive battle that will determine the fate of Middle-Earth. Based on the Book: Return of the King
The Godfather (1972) Rated R
Focuses on the Corleone family’s rise and near fall from power, shifting between the Sicilian Americans’ family life and their criminal enterprises. Based on the book: The Godfather
Schindler’s List (1993) Rated R
The story of a Catholic war profiteer, Oskar Schindler, who risked his life and went bankrupt in order to save more than 1,000 Jews from certain death in concentration camps. He employed Jews in his crockery factory manufacturing goods for the German army. At the same time he tries to stay solvent with the help of a Jewish accountant and negotiates business with a vicious Nazi commandant who enjoys shooting Jews as target practice from the balcony of his villa that overlooks the prison camp he commands. Based on the Book: Schindler’s list
Hunt for Red October (1990) Rated PG
A new Soviet sub, the Red October, is heading for the U.S. coast. Government experts think it is planning to attack–that is, all the experts but one. He thinks the sub’s commander is planning to defect, but he has only a few hours to find the sub and prove his theory. Based on the book: Hunt for Red October
Doctor Zhivago (1965) Rated PG-13
A poet and surgeon, husband and lover, finds his life disrupted by war. It alters the lives of many, including Tonya, the gentle woman he marries and Lara, the woman he cannot forget. Based on the book: Doctor Zhivago
08 Aug 2012
in New Books
Tags: american, books, career, death, fiction, historical fiction, list, love, marriage, mystery, romance
Bride of New France
Laure Beausejour has been taken from her destitute family and raised in an infamous orphanage to be trained as a lace maker. Striking and willful, she dreams of becoming a seamstress and catching the eye of a nobleman. But after complaining about her living conditions, she is sent to Canada as a fille du roi, expected to marry a French farmer there. Laure is shocked by the primitive state of the colony and the mingling of the settlers with the native tribes. When her ill-matched husband leaves her alone in their derelict hut for the winter, she must rely on her wits and her clandestine relationship with an Iroquois man for survival.
Memoirs of an Imaginary Friend
Budo is lucky as imaginary friends go. He’s been alive for more than five years, which is positively ancient in the world of imaginary friends. But Budo feels his age, and thinks constantly of the day when eight-year-old Max Delaney will stop believing in him. When that happens, Budo will disappear. Budo, who loves Max and is charged with protecting him from the class bully, from awkward situations in the cafeteria, and even in the bathroom stalls. But he can’t protect Max from Mrs. Patterson, the woman who works with Max in the Learning Center and who believes that she alone is qualified to care for this young boy. When Mrs. Patterson does the unthinkable and kidnaps Max, it is up to Budo and a team of imaginary friends to save him – and Budo must ultimately decide which is more important: Max’s happiness or Budo’s very existence.
In early 1930s Montana, in the small town of Colton, Maddy Aldridge struggles to make ends meet during the Great Depression. Jeffers Grimm comes to her with a proposition too great for her to turn down: open an illegal speakeasy in the mercantile’s basement, defy Prohibition, and make enough money to make her worries disappear. But, unbeknownst to Maddy, Jeffers has also made a deal with the mob to bring huge quantities of alcohol across the Canadian border and store it in the mercantile. He wants to get rich, regardless of who stands in his way. Jack Rucker used to live in Colton and had been in love with Maddy before he moved away to become an agent for the Bureau of Prohibition. Now, after hearing rumors of a bootleg operation, the Bureau wants him to go back and hide in plain sight. What will Jack do when he finds out what Maddy is up to? Can he and Maddy rekindle the love they once knew? If Jeffers discovers Jack is a federal agent, to what ends will he go to silence him forever?
Goodbye for Now
Sam Elling is a brilliant software engineer, so brilliant that he develops an algorithm to allow grieving people to communicate with their dead loved ones. Initially created to help his soul mate, Meredith, when her beloved grandmother, Livvie, dies; and using previous electronic communication between Meredith and Livvie, he sets up “dead mail” between them. Soon Sam, Meredith, and her cousin establish RePose. Ethical and religious issues arise (as when parents of terminally ill children spend time videotaping rather than living in the moment), and Sam has qualms about how helpful his service really is until he needs it himself.
City of Women
David R Gillham
Berlin 1943, in the midst of war, offers little comfort for the women left behind. Sigrid, a seemingly dutiful wife to a husband serving on the Russian front, copes with a tedious job, a hostile mother-in-law, rationed food, air raids, and the fear of stepping out of line. There is always someone eager to denounce a neighbor for an unguarded moment or outburst. Sigrid has her secrets but holds them close: a Jewish lover from the recent past, and a random event that draws her into a chain of people hiding and protecting Jews. Even though her naïveté takes her to dangerous places, she is wise enough to be cautious. Life becomes more fraught when Sigrid’s wounded husband returns.
William Kent Krueger
Cork O’Connor and Jubal Little are deep in the Minnesota wilderness bowhunting, a long-standing tradition among these two friends, when the unthinkable happens. Little is killed by a stray arrow that turns out to have been O’Connor’s, and he becomes the primary suspect in the murder. He understands full well that he’s been set up. As he works to clear his name and track the real killer, he remembers his long, complex relationship with the tough kid who would grow up to become a professional football player, a populist politician, and the lover of the first woman to whom Cork ever gave his heart. Jubal was known by many for his passion, his loyalty, and his ambition. Only Cork knows that he was capable of murder.
27 Jul 2012
in Movies, Subject Guide
Tags: 1924 paris olympics, 1972 munich massacre, account, anti-semitism, based on a true story, black september, british runners, business, Chariots of fire, distance runner, eleven israeli athletes, english, faith, fictionalized, films, footage, god, hatred, hostage, industrialist, interviews, israeli squad, list, movies, Munich, music, olympic athlete, olympic games, olympic village, olympics of peace and joy, one day in september, palestinian group, palestinian terrorists, Saturday Cinema, secret, sport, steve prefontaine, summer olympics, Summer Olympics in film, tokyo, tourists, walk don't run, What to Watch, without limits
Chariots of Fire (1981) Rated PG
Story of two British runners that were both driven by different means to win at the 1924 Paris Olympics. One used his faith in God, and the other his hatred of Anti-Semitism. Based on a true story.
Munich (2005) Rated R
The story of the secret Israeli squad assigned to track down and assassinate the Palestinian terrorists believed to have planned the 1972 Munich massacre of eleven Israeli athletes–and the personal toll this mission of revenge takes on the team and the man who leads it.
Walk Don’t Run (1966) Rated NR
When English industrialist Sir William Rutland arrives in Tokyo on business, the influx of tourists for the upcoming Olympic games makes it impossible to find lodging, so Sir William fast-talks his way into sharing an apartment with beautiful Christine Easton for a few days. To further confuse matters, Sir William invites Olympic athlete Steve Davis to share his half of the apartment. Sir William then plays Cupid between Christine and Steve, much to Christine’s stodgy fiancé’s surprise. Will Sir William manage to send his roomies to the altar?
One Day in September (1999) Rated NR
They were billed as the ‘Olympics of Peace and Joy’ but became the Olympics of terror — Munich 1972. An extreme Palestinian group called Black September held 11 Israeli athletes hostage in the Olympic village while the world looked on, incredulous. Using extraordinary archive footage, music and interviews with those who took part (including the only surviving member of the Black September group), “One day in September” tells the dramatic story of what happened in Munich during those 21 hours.
Without Limits (1998) Rated PG-13
A fictionalized account of Steve Prefontaine, a distance runner, who took the sport into a new era.
11 Jul 2012
in New Books
Tags: bank robbery, banks, books, cyclists, divorce, farm, fiction, list, new, olympics, pregnancy, trust
Trust Me, I’m a Banker
Meet Dave Hart, just your typical investment banker. It’s not long until Bonus Day, the most important day of the year, and anything less than a million pounds would be an insult. After all, Dave has to buy a new car, a new Rolex for his wife, and a second home in the country. Not to mention support a few personal habits, legal or otherwise, that gentlemen bankers don’t discuss in public. Unfortunately, a million really isn’t what it used to be, and no one else seems to value Dave as much as he knows he’s worth. Luckily, competence and charm have never been accurate barometers for success in high finance, and Dave just might be able to weasel and blunder his way to the top.
Composing her memoirs, onetime Supreme Court nominee Karen Hollander tells us up front that she is going to reveal the truth about a deadly incident from her radical past. But she doesn’t actually remember or know everything she wants to put in her book. She interviews old friends and even has herself investigated by a CIA-operative lover, but her old compatriots don’t share her eagerness to have their dark secret come to light. A child of privilege on Chicago’s wealthy North Shore, Hollander acted out James Bond novels with friends in her youth. The “missions” grew in seriousness when she became a college student outraged by Vietnam. As Karen reconstructs the past and reconciles the girl she was then with the woman she is now, finally sharing pieces of her secret past with her national-security-cowboy boyfriend and Occupy-activist granddaughter, the power of memory and history and luck become clear.
Keira Johnson, a 50-year-old mother of two grown sons, believes she lives a good Christian life without secrets– until she discovers a life-jarring fact her late mother kept hidden all her life. Kiera was born out of wedlock, and the man she had always known as her father had adopted her as an infant. Meanwhile, Keira’s beloved 17-year-old niece, Kirsten, has just discovered an unwanted pregnancy. Her boyfriend, Jose, is bound for college and Kirsten does not know what to do. As the family comes together for a reunion, Keira and Kirsten struggle with their fractured pasts and jumbled present.
Spanning the Athens, Beijing, and looming London 2012 Olympics, the fierce competition between two track cyclists ultimately asks “What would you sacrifice for the people you love?” Now at thirty-two, these women are facing their last and biggest race: the 2012 Olympics. Each wants desperately to win gold, and each has more than a medal to lose. Kate is the more naturally gifted, but the demands of her life have a tendency to slow her down. Her eight year old daughter Sophie is battling leukemia for the second time. While intense, aloof Zoe has always hovered on the periphery of real human companionship, and her compulsive need to win at any cost has more than once threatened her friendship with Kate and her own sanity. Devoted and self-sacrificing Kate knows her daughter is fragile, but at the height of her last frenzied months of training, might she be blind to the most terrible prognosis? Will Zoe allow her obsession, and the advantage she has over a harried, anguished mother, to sever the bond they have shared for more than a decade?
East of Denver
Stacey “Shakespeare” Williams has returned home to the family farm. With no job and no prospects, Shakespeare suddenly finds himself caretaker to both his dad and the farm. They have no money, the land is fallow, and a local banker has cheated his father out of the majority of the farm equipment as well as his beloved Cessna. Shakespeare falls in with an unlikely clique of former classmates. Facing the loss of the farm, Shakespeare hatches a half-serious plot with his misfit friends to rob the very bank that has stolen their future.
Better with You Here
Single mom Natasha Davila has done a good job holding things together. Her divorce didn’t leave her with much, but she has her kids and they are her world. Only now, she’s facing a problem she never predicted: Her ex-husband is re-marrying, expecting a new baby and –worst of all–suing Natasha for full custody of their two children. Desperate to save her family, she turns to her neighbors–fellow single moms facing their own drama. Sharing their laughter and their tears, these near strangers help Natasha find a strength she never knew she had. And when her ex ups the ante and exposes some disturbing news about Natasha’s new friends, she’ll need that strength more than ever. But playing dirty opens Mike to the same level of scrutiny, and no one, it turns out, is perfect.
04 Jul 2012
in Movies, Subject Guide
Tags: 1776, 4th of July, america, apprentice, backwoods, battle of lexington green, boston tea party, british troops, currency, declaration of independence, Drums along the mohawk, england, family, FBI, films, founding fathers, french and Indian, frontier, Hero, historical characters, historical drama, Independence day films, independence day movies, johnny tremain, July 4 1776, July 4th, leader, list, movies, musical, national treasure, new york, patriot, peace, Saturday Cinema, silversmith, son, sons of liberty, south carolina, steal, story, united states of america, What to Watch, wife
The Patriot (2000) Rated R
A hero of the French and Indian conflict, Benjamin Martin had renounced fighting forever to raise his family in peace. However, when British troops arrive at his South Carolina home and endanger his family, he takes up arms alongside his idealistic patriot son, Gabriel.
Johnny Tremain (1957) Rated NR
Johnny Tremain, a silversmith’s apprentice, dreams of learning the trade and making his own way. When a terrible injury ends his hopes, he joins the emerging Sons of Liberty and takes part in the Boston Tea Party and the Battle of Lexington Green.
1776 (1972) Rated PG
1776 is a delightful musical celebration of the founding of The United States of America. The story centers around the familiar historical characters as they organize a movement for independence from Mother England. All events lead up to that most significant date, July 4, 1776, when the Declaration of Independence was signed.
National Treasure (2004) Rated PG
Since his childhood, Benjamin Franklin Gates has known that he is a descendant of a long line of people whose job it has been to guard a treasure hidden by the Founding Fathers. They hid clues to its whereabouts in the country’s currency and on the back of the Declaration of Independence. Now, Ben has learned of a plot to steal the Declaration, and has only one option: he has to steal it himself. Even if he pulls off this monumental task, keeping the treasure safe is still going to be incredibly hard, especially since the FBI now knows of his plans.
Drums Along the Mohawk (1939) Rated NR
A historical drama that tells the story of a young frontier leader, his spirited wife, and their struggles in the backwoods of New York state.
20 Jun 2012
in Subject Guide
Tags: books, drama, fiction, list, love, young adult
Teen books aren’t just for teens. They are well written, engaging books that are grabbing the attention of all ages – maybe because a younger family member introduces the book, or because the story is being made into a movie, or perhaps because it has won an award. Whatever the reason, here are some fantastic teen books that we think you should read.
A teen book is any book or story that has primary appeal to teenagers. This usually translates into young protagonists exploring their place in the world. Sometimes this coming of age is completed in a contemporary, realistic setting, but more often than not lately, these big questions are answered through tableaus of mortal danger and dystopian settings.
The following list is not comprehensive. It’s not a list of award winners. It’s not a list of the best sellers. It’s not a list of the newest, hottest, most daring or whatever “-est” adjective you can think of. It is a list of titles found on YA Lit bloggers’ websites that I thought sounded like they might appeal to adult readers interested in YA Lit. Hopefully some of these titles will appeal to you.
The Chocolate War (1974)
by Robert Cormier
Jerry Renault is forced into a psychological showdown with Trinity School’s gang leader, Archie Costello, for refusing to be bullied into selling chocolates for the annual fund raising.
The Mockingbirds (2010)
by Daisy Whitney
When Alex, a junior at an elite preparatory school, realizes that she may have been the victim of date rape, she confides in her roommates and sister who convince her to seek help from a secret society, the Mockingbirds.
My Beating Teenage Heart (2011)
by C.K. Kelly Martin
Two unexpected and heartbreaking deaths cause the lives of two very different teenagers to become intertwined as one struggles to deal with his grief and stay in this world, and the other finds herself inexplicably caught between this world and the next.
Once Was Lost (2009)
by Sara Zarr
As the tragedy of a missing girl enfolds in her small town, fifteen-year-old Samara, who feels emotionally abandoned by her parents, begins to question her faith.
Rats Saw God (1996)
by Rob Thomas
In hopes of graduating, Steve York agrees to complete a hundred-page writing assignment which helps him to sort out his relationship with his famous astronaut father and the events that changed him from promising student to troubled teen.
The Space Between Trees (2010)
by Katie Williams
When the body of a classmate is discovered in the woods, sixteen-year-old Evie’s lies wind up involving her with the girl’s best friend, trying to track down the killer.
The True Meaning of Smekday (2007)
by Adam Rex
When her mother is abducted by aliens on Christmas Eve (or “Smekday” Eve since the Boov invasion), 11 year-old Tip hops in the family car and heads south to find her and meets an alien Boov mechanic who agrees to help her, and save the planet from disaster.