Us Conductors is the story of the man who created the most magical musical instrument in the world, the theremin. It's a tale of electricity and espionage, jazz and kung-fu, Harlem and Siberia, and the way even doomed love can keep you alive. Locked in a cabin aboard a ship bearing him back to Russia and away from the love of his life, Lev Sergeyvich Termen begins to type his story: a tale of electricity, romance, and the invention of the world's strangest instrument, the theremin. He recollects his early years as a scientist forging breakthroughs during the Bolshevik Revolution and his decade as a Manhattan celebrity and reluctant Soviet spy. Against the backdrop of Prohibition and the 1929 crash, Termen spends his days in his workshop, devising inventions, and his nights in Harlem clubs, jostling with famous bandleaders and falling in love with the young violinist Clara Reisenberg. When the boat reaches his homeland, Termen finds it is not the Russia he remembers. He is imprisoned in the Gulag system, sent first to a Siberian work camp and then to a secret laboratory. In the face of all this, his love for Clara remains constant, passing through the ether like the theremin's song. Steeped in beauty, wonder, and looping heartbreak, Sean Michaels' debut novel explores the lies we tell, the truths we imagine, and the lengths we go to survive.
©2014 Sean Michaels (P)2015 Audible, Inc.
Im not boyfriend material. If a trail of broken hearts and a piss-poor record of failed relationships have taught me anything, its this. My buddies are happy to give me shit about my latest breakup from here to next Sunday. Thanks, but Id rather have a root canal. And a vasectomy. At the same time. Relief comes in an unlikely package - the gorgeous and feisty Maren. She just so happens to be my best friends sister, so thats not awkward at all. But Im a man on a mission, and Maren is down to teach me all the ways Ive been failing as a boyfriend. Apparently, there are many. And its all very informative - until I start to catch feelings. Now its not just my reputation on the line, but my heart, too.
©2020 Kendall Ryan (P)2020 Kendall Ryan
One of CBC Books' 20 Canadian Books to Read in September One of Toronto Star's 35 Books to Read in Fall 2019 One of NOWs 17 Must-Read Books for Fall 2019 Scotiabank Giller winner Sean Michaels is back with his widely anticipated second novel, The Wagers, a deeply satisfying story of long odds, magical heists, and the dizzying gamble of life. Where does luck come from? What is it worth? And how much of it do you need to be happy? Theo Potiris is a grocer and a comedian who never repeats his jokes. After 15 years of open mics, he's still waiting for his break - bicycling to the comedy club at night, stacking plums at his family's grand and ramshackle supermarket by day. His girlfriend is halfway around the world, searching for enlightenment with a patron who happens to be the richest man on Earth, and when two other loved-ones get struck by bolts from the blue, Theo decides he can't keep chasing his old dreams any longer. He resolves to trade his wishes in, pursuing a bigger score. Here, Sean Michaels' novel takes a surprise left turn, away from the price of milk and into a shabby, beautiful, imaginary Montreal where peacocks strut on street corners and gamblers bet on sunny days. Theo uncovers a mysterious association of sports-obsessed mathematicians, The Rabbit's Foot, which is turning probability into riches, and the vigilante No Name Gang, who steal luck from those who have taken more than their fair share. Bursting with sheer story-telling pleasure and stylish prose, The Wagers carries you along on wave after wave of invention - a literary motorcycle chase that soon has you wondering about the randomness of good fortune and all the ways we choose to wage our lives.
©2020 Sean Michaels (P)2020 Penguin Random House Canada