Cover art for Bluebeard

Bluebeard

8 ratings

Summary

Bluebeard, published in 1987, is Vonnegut's meditation on art, artists, surrealism, and disaster. Meet Rabo Karabekian, a moderately successful surrealist painter who we meet late in life and see struggling (like all of Vonnegut's key characters) with the dregs of unresolved pain and the consequences of brutality. Loosely based on the legend of Bluebeard (best realized in Bela Bartok's one-act opera), the novel follows Karabekian through the last events in his life, which are heavy with women, painting, artistic ambition, artistic fraudulence, and as of yet unknown consequence. Vonnegut's intention here is not so much satirical (although the contemporary art scene would be easy enough to deconstruct), nor is it documentary (although Karabekian does carry elements of Jackson Pollock and Mark Rothko). Instead Vonnegut is using art for the same purpose he used science fiction clichés in Slaughterhouse-Five: as a filter through which he can illuminate the savagery, cruelty, and essentially comic misdirection of human existence. Listeners will recognize familiar Vonnegut character types and archetypes as they drift in and out through the background; meanwhile Karabekian, betrayed and betrayer, sinks through a bottomless haze of recollection. Like most of Vonnegut's late works, this is both science fiction and cruel, contemporary realism at once, using science fiction as metaphor for human damage as well as failure to perceive. Listeners will find that Vonnegut's protagonists can never really clarify for us whether they are ultimately unwitting victims or simple barbarians, leaving it up to the listener to determine in which genre this audiobook really fits, if any at all.

©1987 Kurt Vonnegut (P)2015 Audible, Inc.

Length: 7 hrs and 19 mins
Available on Audible
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The Great Terror

1 rating

Summary

The definitive work on Stalin's purges, The Great Terror was universally acclaimed when it first appeared in 1968. While the original volume had relied heavily on unofficial sources, later developments within the Soviet Union provided an avalanche of new material, which Conquest has mined to write this revised and updated edition of his classic work. Under the light of fresh evidence, it is remarkable how many of Conquest's most disturbing conclusions have been verified. Many details have also been added, including hitherto secret information on the three great "Moscow Trials", the purge of writers and other members of the intelligentsia, life in the labor camps, and many other key matters. Both a leading Sovietologist and a highly respected poet, Conquest blends profound research with evocative prose to create a compelling and eloquent chronicle of one of the 20th century's most tragic events.

©1990 Robert Conquest (P)1992 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Category: History, World
Length: 30 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
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The Orc King

62 ratings

Summary

Drizzt is back, and facing a world changed forever! An uneasy peace between the dwarves of Mithral Hall and the orcs of the newly established Kingdom of Many-Arrows can't last long. The orc tribes united under Obould begin to fight each other, and Bruenor is determined to finish the war that nearly killed him and almost destroyed everything he's worked to build. But it will take more than swords and axes to bring a lasting peace to the Spine of the World. Powerful individuals on both sides may have to change the way they see each other. They may have to start to talk. And it won't be easy. This book wasn't just the next installment in the long-running saga of the famous dark elf, but the beginning of a bold new trilogy that will help change the face of the Forgotten Realms world forever.

©2008 R. A. Salvatore (P)2009 Random House

Length: 15 hrs and 11 mins
Available on Audible
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The Pirate King

45 ratings

Summary

Drizzt returns to Luskan, and the Realms will never be the same! The Arcane Brotherhood has long held the city of Luskan in their power, but when corruption eats away at their ranks, Captain Deudermont comes to the rescue of a city that has become a safe haven for the Sword Coast's most dangerous pirates. But rescuing a city from itself may not be as easy as Deudermont thinks, and when Drizzt can't talk him out of it, he'll be forced to help. Drizzt is back in action again, and bringing more changes to the Forgotten Realms setting. This all new adventure will keep Drizzt fans guessing the whole way, with edge-of-your-seat action and plot twists that even the most casual reader of the Forgotten Realms novel line can't afford to miss!

©2008 R. A. Salvatore (P)2009 Random House

Length: 13 hrs and 49 mins
Available on Audible
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One Summer in Monte Carlo

Summary

Monte Carlo means different things to different people - a billionaires' playground overflowing with glitz and glamour, but also where dangerous secrets hide. For Nanette Weston and her then fiancé, F1 racing driver Zac Ewart, their dream life came to an abrupt halt three years ago following a car accident which Zac walked away from but left Nanette being airlifted back to the UK, never to return and never to see her fiancé again.  Monte Carlo was a place she wanted to forget, not revisit. But when her friend and employer Vanessa asks Nanette to look after her children in the Principality for a few months, Nanette knows she has no choice but to return.  As the F1 circus once again comes to town, with Zac in pole position, mistakes of the past leave legacies for the future.... This book was previously published as Follow Your Star by Jennifer Bohnet.

©2021 Jennifer Bohnet (P)2021 Boldwood Books Ltd

Length: 8 hrs and 47 mins
Available on Audible
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The Hill We Climb

Summary

Amanda Gorman’s powerful and historic poem “The Hill We Climb”, read at President Joe Biden’s inauguration “Stunning.” (CNN) “Dynamic.” (NPR) “Deeply rousing and uplifting.” (Vogue) On January 20, 2021, Amanda Gorman became the sixth and youngest poet to deliver a poetry reading at a presidential inauguration. Taking the stage after the 46th president of the United States, Joe Biden, Gorman captivated the nation and brought hope to viewers around the globe. Her poem “The Hill We Climb: An Inaugural Poem for the Country” can now be cherished in this special audiobook. Including an enduring foreword by Oprah Winfrey, this keepsake celebrates the promise of America and affirms the power of poetry.

©2021 Amanda Gorman (P)2021 Penguin Audio

Available on Audible
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Shelter for Quinn

5 ratings

Summary

Having grown up with a port-wine birthmark on her face and neck, Quinn Dixon’s heard them all. Her own mother couldn’t bear to touch her, let alone strangers. Years of stares and insults from everyone from classmates to foster families have made her understandably reluctant to trust. So when John comes along, of course he couldn’t be interested in more than a brief affair. He’ll get sick of all the gawking and whispers soon enough and leave her…just like everyone else. John “Driftwood” Trettle was captivated by Quinn the moment they met. After months of skirting around their attraction, one pivotal evening finds John seizing the reins and refusing to be denied a chance to prove he’s worthy of Quinn’s time, her trust, and her love. To show her he’ll have her back, always, and defend her against anyone cruel or stupid enough to hurt his woman. But he can’t protect against an unknown threat. Even if it wears a familiar face....

©2019 Susan Stoker (P)2019 Susan Stoker

Length: 7 hrs
Available on Audible
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The Ghost King

48 ratings

Summary

Don't miss the gripping conclusion to Salvatore's New York Times best-selling Transitions trilogy! When the Spellplague ravages Faerûn, Drizzt and his companions are caught in the chaos. Seeking out the help of the priest Cadderly - the hero of the recently reissued series The Cleric Quintet - Drizzt finds himself facing his most powerful and elusive foe, the twisted Crenshinibon, the demonic crystal shard he believed had been destroyed years ago.

©2009 R.A. Salvatore (P)2009 Random House

Length: 12 hrs and 33 mins
Available on Audible
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The Reckless Oath We Made

15 ratings

Summary

A new provocative love story from the New York Times best-selling author of All the Ugly and Wonderful Things. "The story of Zee and Gentry is the reason we read." (Brunonia Barry)    Their journey will break them - or save them. A moving and complicated love story for our time, The Reckless Oath We Made redefines what it means to be heroic. Zee has never admitted to needing anybody. But she needs Gentry. Her tough exterior shelters a heart that's loyal to the point of self-destruction, while autistic Gentry wears his heart on his sleeve, including his desire to protect Zee at all costs. When an abduction tears Zee's family apart, she turns to Gentry - and sets in motion a journey and a love that will change their lives forever.    "[A] mind-blowing book that has left me scrambling to pick up the pieces of my brain and my shattered heart.... Prepare to have your mind and heart expanded to their limits." (The Oklahoman) Audiobook cast of narrators: Alex McKenna, as Zee  Kirby Heyborne, as Gentry  Adenrele Ojo, as Charlene  MacLeod Andrews, as Rhys  Mark Bramhall, as Alva  Maxwell Glick, as Marcus  Georgette Perna, as Rosalinda   Amanda Carlin, as Dottie  Kaleo Griffith, as Deputy Evangelista

©2019 Bryn Greenwood (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Available on Audible
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Aleph

17 ratings

Summary

Transform your life. Rewrite your destiny. In his most personal novel to date, internationally best-selling author Paulo Coelho returns with a remarkable journey of self-discovery. Like the main character in his much-beloved The Alchemist, Paulo is facing a grave crisis of faith. As he seeks a path of spiritual renewal and growth, he decides to begin again: to travel, to experiment, to reconnect with people and the landscapes around him. Setting off to Africa, and then to Europe and Asia via the Trans-Siberian Railway, he initiates a journey to revitalize his energy and passion. Even so, he never expects to meet Hilal. A gifted young violinist, she is the woman Paulo loved five hundred years before - and the woman he betrayed in an act of cowardice so far-reaching that it prevents him from finding real happiness in this life. Together they will initiate a mystical voyage through time and space, traveling a path that teaches love, forgiveness, and the courage to overcome life’s inevitable challenges. Beautiful and inspiring, Aleph invites us to consider the meaning of our own personal journeys: Are we where we want to be, doing what we want to do? Some books are read. Aleph is lived.

©2011 Paulo Coehlo (P)2011 Random House Audio

Length: 8 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
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Buckled

1 rating

Summary

I protect what’s mine. The ranch, my family, our buried secrets. Nothing will stop me from reassembling the life that went terribly wrong. Not the law. Not our enemies. Not even Maybe Quinn. The gorgeous, quarrelsome journalist shouldn’t have meddled. I shouldn’t have let her stay. But she’s hiding something in those deceptive blue eyes. Something deeper than her thirst for a news story. I make a deal with her to buy time. To unravel her lies. To play with her. To satisfy my darker appetites. When she buckles beneath my belt, I’ll send her away. Unless I buckle first.

©2018 Pam Godwin (P)2018 Oh My Audiobooks

Available on Audible
Cover art for The Creature from Jekyll Island

The Creature from Jekyll Island

99 ratings

Summary

This classic expose of the Fed has become one of the best-selling books in its category of all time. Where does money come from? Where does it go? Who makes it? The money magician's secrets are unveiled. Here is a close look at their mirrors and smoke machines, the pulleys, cogs, and wheels that create the grand illusion called money. A boring subject? Just wait. You'll be hooked in five minutes. It reads like a detective story - which it really is, but it's all true. This book is about the most blatant scam of history. It's all here: the cause of wars, boom-bust cycles, inflation, depression, prosperity. Your world view will definitely change. Putting it quite simply, this may be the most important book on world affairs you will ever read. The 5th Edition includes a no-holds barred analysis of bank bailouts under the Bush and Obama Administrations that are shown to be nothing less than legalized plunder of the American people. Many other updates have been added, including a revision to the list of those who attended the historic meeting at Jekyll Island, where the Federal Reserve was created.

©1994 G. Edward Griffin (P)2013 Audiobooks.com

Length: 24 hrs and 21 mins
Available on Audible
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New York

21 ratings

Summary

The best-selling master of historical fiction weaves a grand, sweeping drama of New York from the city's founding to the present day. 

Rutherfurd celebrates America's greatest city in a rich, engrossing saga that showcases his extraordinary ability to combine impeccable historical research and storytelling flair. As in his earlier, best-selling novels, he illuminates cultural, social, and political upheavals through the lives of a remarkably diverse set of families. 

As he recounts the intertwining fates of characters rich and poor, black and white, native born and immigrant, Rutherfurd brings to life the momentous events that shaped New York and America: the Revolutionary War, the emergence of the city as a great trading and financial center, the excesses of the Gilded Age, the explosion of immigration in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the trials of World War II, the near-demise of New York in the 1970s and its roaring rebirth in the '90s, and the attacks on the World Trade Center. Sprinkled throughout are captivating cameo appearances by historical figures ranging from George Washington to Abraham Lincoln to Babe Ruth. 

New York is the book that millions of Rutherfurd's American fans have been waiting for. A brilliant mix of romance, war, family drama, and personal triumphs, it gloriously captures the search for freedom and prosperity at the heart of our nation's history.

©2009 Edward Rutherford (P)2009 Random House

Length: 37 hrs and 17 mins
Available on Audible
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Stone Mattress

19 ratings

Summary

A collection of highly imaginative short pieces that speak to our times with deadly accuracy. Vintage Atwood creativity, intelligence, and humor: think Alias Grace. Margaret Atwood turns to short fiction for the first time since her 2006 collection, Moral Disorder, with nine tales of acute psychological insight and turbulent relationships bringing to mind her award-winning 1996 novel, Alias Grace. A recently widowed fantasy writer is guided through a stormy winter evening by the voice of her late husband in "Alphinland," the first of three loosely linked stories about the romantic geometries of a group of writers and artists. In "The Freeze-Dried Bridegroom," a man who bids on an auctioned storage space has a surprise. In "Lusus Naturae," a woman born with a genetic abnormality is mistaken for a vampire. In "Torching the Dusties," an elderly lady with Charles Bonnet syndrome comes to terms with the little people she keeps seeing, while a newly formed populist group gathers to burn down her retirement residence. And in "Stone Mattress," a long-ago crime is avenged in the Arctic via a 1.9 billion-year-old stromatolite. In these nine tales, Margaret Atwood is at the top of her darkly humorous and seriously playful game. List of Stories and Narrators: "Alphinland" and "Torching the Dusties" read by Lorna Raver "Revenant" read by Mark Bramhall "Dark Lady" and "The Dead Hand Loves You" read by Arthur Morey "Lusus Naturae" read by Emily Rankin "The Freeze-Dried Groom" read by Rob Delaney "I Dream of Zenia with the Bright Red Teeth" read by Bernadette Dunne "Stone Mattress" read by Margaret Atwood

©2014 Margaret Atwood (P)2014 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for Committed to Wellness, Fitness and a Healthy Lifestyle

Committed to Wellness, Fitness and a Healthy Lifestyle

Summary

Your mind is stronger than you believe. I never truly realized the power of positive thinking and really believing in myself, until I studied what actually goes into being motivated.... Here's a preview of what I am just about to teach you: Your motivation for preparation phase - make it exciting! How to combine different motivation techniques effectively Your motivation for the actual program Psychological aspects of internal motivation - how to activate your inner fire and be successful with your fitness and weight loss goals How to deal with haters and bad influences when on a diet/fitness program (don't let them stop you from succeeding!) Your motivational techniques for the feedback phase How to feel healthier and utilize it as your motivator How to actually keep on track How to pull yourself together after falling off the wagon and take massive action again! How to successfully plan your meals and how to enjoy them How to fall in love with wellness Little weight loss tricks that work as massive motivation boosters How to aim for progress and stop being a perfectionist How to use failure to actually achieve success (make it your asset!) The concept of self-coaching: how to be your own weight loss and fitness coach How to be creative during your weight loss/fitness/physical transformation journey (you need creativity to make the process as exciting and fun as possible!) The concept of holistic wellness- how to make the most of your wellness journey and use it as a personal development tool as well

©2015 Marta Tuchowska (P)2015 Marta Tuchowska

Available on Audible
Cover art for In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer

In My Hands: Memories of a Holocaust Rescuer

7 ratings

Summary

Irene Gut was just 17 in 1939, when the Germans and Russians devoured her native Poland. Just a girl, really. But a girl who saw evil and chose to defy it.

©2008 Irene Gut Opdyke (P)2015 Listening Library

Available on Audible
Cover art for The Smaller Evil

The Smaller Evil

Summary

Sometimes the greater good requires the smaller evil. Seventeen-year-old Arman Dukoff can't remember life without anxiety and chronic illness when he arrives at an expensive self-help retreat in the remote hills of Big Sur. He's taken a huge risk - and $2,000 from his meth-head stepfather - for a chance to "evolve", as Beau, the retreat leader, says. Beau is complicated. A father figure? A cult leader? A con man? Arman's not sure, but more than anyone he's ever met, Beau makes Arman feel something other than what he usually feels - worthless. The retreat compound is secluded in coastal California mountains among towering redwoods, and when the iron gates close behind him, Arman believes for a moment that he can get better. But the program is a blur of jargon, bizarre rituals, and incomprehensible encounters with a beautiful girl. Arman is certain he's failing everything. But Beau disagrees; he thinks Arman has a bright future - though he never says at what. And then, in an instant Arman can't believe or totally recall, Beau is gone. Suicide? Or murder? Arman was the only witness, and now the compound is getting tense. And maybe dangerous. As the mysteries and paradoxes multiply and the hints become accusations, Arman must rely on the person he's always trusted the least: himself.

©2016 Stephanie Kuehn (P)2016 Listening Library

Available on Audible
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The Greatest Salesman in the World

107 ratings

Summary

What you are today is not important, for in this runaway best seller you will learn how to change your life by applying the secrets you are about to discover in the ancient scrolls.

©2016 Og Mandino (P)2016 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Og Mandino
Length: 2 hrs and 33 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Voyager

Voyager

Summary

The acclaimed, award-winning novelist takes us on some of his most memorable journeys in this revelatory collection of travel essays that spans the globe, from the Caribbean to Scotland to the Himalayas. Now in his mid-70s, Russell Banks has indulged his wanderlust for more than half a century. "Since childhood, I've longed for escape, for rejuvenation, for wealth untold, for erotic and narcotic and sybaritic fresh starts, for high romance, mystery, and intrigue," he writes in this compelling anthology. The longing for escape has taken him from the "bright green islands and turquoise seas" of the Caribbean islands to peaks in the Himalayas, the Andes, and beyond. In Voyager, Russell Banks, a lifelong explorer, shares highlights from his travels: interviewing Fidel Castro in Cuba; motoring to a hippie reunion with college friends in Chapel Hill, North Carolina; eloping to Edinburgh with his fourth wife, Chase; driving a sunset-orange metallic Hummer down Alaska's Seward Highway. In each of these remarkable essays, Banks considers his life and the world. In Everglades National Park, a "perfect place to time-travel", he traces his own time line. "I keep going back, and with increasingly clarity I see more of the place and more of my past selves. And more of the past of the planet as well." Recalling his trips to the Caribbean in the title essay, "Voyager", Banks dissects his relationships with the four women who would become his wives. In the Himalayas he embarks on a different quest of self-discovery. "One climbs a mountain not to conquer it but to be lifted like this away from the earth up into the sky," he explains. Pensive, frank, beautiful, and engaging, Voyager brings together the social, the personal, and the historical, opening a path into the heart and soul of this revered writer.

©2016 Russell Banks (P)2016 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 10 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for American Revolutions

American Revolutions

2 ratings

Summary

From the two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, a fresh, authoritative history that recasts our thinking about America’s founding period. The American Revolution is often portrayed as a high-minded, orderly event whose capstone, the Constitution, provided the ideal framework for a democratic, prosperous nation. Alan Taylor, two-time winner of the Pulitzer Prize, gives us a different creation story in this magisterial history of the nation's founding.  Rising out of the continental rivalries of European empires and their native allies, Taylor's Revolution builds like a ground fire overspreading Britain's mainland colonies, fueled by local conditions, destructive, hard to quell. Conflict ignited on the frontier, where settlers clamored to push west into Indian lands against British restrictions, and in the seaboard cities, where commercial elites mobilized riots and boycotts to resist British tax policies. When war erupted, patriot crowds harassed loyalists and nonpartisans into compliance with their cause. Brutal guerrilla violence flared all along the frontier, from New York to the Carolinas, fed by internal divisions as well as the clash with Britain. Taylor skillfully draws France, Spain, and native powers into a comprehensive narrative of the war that delivers the major battles, generals, and common soldiers with insight and power.  With discord smoldering in the fragile new nation through the 1780s, nationalist leaders such as James Madison and Alexander Hamilton sought to restrain unruly state democracies and consolidate power in a federal Constitution. Assuming the mantle of "we the people", the advocates of national power ratified the new frame of government. But their opponents prevailed in the presidency of Thomas Jefferson, whose vision of a Western "empire of liberty" aligned with the long-standing, expansive ambitions of frontier settlers. White settlement and black slavery spread west, setting the stage for a civil war that nearly destroyed the union created by the founders. 

©2016 Alan Taylor (P)2016 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Alan Taylor
Length: 18 hrs and 54 mins
Available on Audible
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Black Earth

5 ratings

Summary

In this epic history of extermination and survival, Timothy Snyder presents a new explanation of the great atrocity of the 20th century and reveals the risks that we face in the 21st. Based on new sources from Eastern Europe and forgotten testimonies from Jewish survivors, Black Earth recounts the mass murder of the Jews as an event that is still close to us, more comprehensible than we would like to think and thus all the more terrifying. The Holocaust began in a dark but accessible place, in Hitler's mind, with the thought that the elimination of Jews would restore balance to the planet and allow Germans to win the resources they desperately needed. Such a worldview could be realized only if Germany destroyed other states, so Hitler's aim was a colonial war in Europe itself. In the zones of statelessness, almost all Jews died. A few people, the righteous few, aided them, without support from institutions. Much of the new research in this book is devoted to understanding these extraordinary individuals. The almost insurmountable difficulties they faced only confirm the dangers of state destruction and ecological panic. These men and women should be emulated, but in similar circumstances few of us would do so. By overlooking the lessons of the Holocaust, Snyder concludes, we have misunderstood modernity and endangered the future. The early 21st century is coming to resemble the early twentieth, as growing preoccupations with food and water accompany ideological challenges to global order. Our world is closer to Hitler's than we like to admit, and saving it requires us to see the Holocaust as it was - and ourselves as we are. Groundbreaking, authoritative, and utterly absorbing, Black Earth reveals a Holocaust that is not only history but warning.

©2015 Timonthy Snyder (P)2015 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 16 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Sanford Meisner on Acting

Sanford Meisner on Acting

12 ratings

Summary

Sanford Meisner was one of the best known and beloved teachers of acting in the country. This audiobook follows one of his acting classes for 15 months, beginning with the most rudimentary exercises and ending with affecting and polished scenes from contemporary American plays. Written in collaboration with Dennis Longwell, it is essential listening for beginning and professional actors alike. Throughout this audiobooks, Meisner is a delight - always empathizing with his students and urging them onward, provoking emotion, laughter, and growing technical mastery from his charges.  With an introduction by Sydney Pollack, director of Out of Africa and Tootsie, who worked with Meisner for five years. "This book should be read by anyone who wants to act or even appreciate what acting involves. Like Meisner's way of teaching, it is the straight goods." (Arthur Miller) "If there is a key to good acting, this one is it, above all others. Actors, young and not so young, will find inspiration and excitement in this book." (Gregory Peck) Read by Jason Culp, Arthur Morey, and Mark Bramhall

©1987 Sanford Meisner, Dennis Longwell, Sydney Pollack (P)2020 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Year of the Flood

227 ratings

Summary

The long-awaited new novel from Margaret Atwood. The Year of the Flood is a dystopic masterpiece and a testament to her visionary power.   The times and species have been changing at a rapid rate, and the social compact is wearing as thin as environmental stability. Adam One, the kindly leader of the God's Gardeners - a religion devoted to the melding of science and religion, as well as the preservation of all plant and animal life - has long predicted a natural disaster that will alter Earth as we know it. Now it has occurred, obliterating most human life. Two women have survived: Ren, a young trapeze dancer locked inside the high-end sex club Scales and Tails, and Toby, a God's Gardener barricaded inside a luxurious spa where many of the treatments are edible. Have others survived? Ren's bioartist friend Amanda? Zeb, her eco-fighter stepfather? Her onetime lover, Jimmy? Or the murderous Painballers, survivors of the mutual-elimination Painball prison? Not to mention the shadowy, corrupt policing force of the ruling powers.... Meanwhile, gene-spliced life forms are proliferating: the lion/lamb blends, the Mo'hair sheep with human hair, the pigs with human brain tissue. As Adam One and his intrepid hemp-clad band make their way through this strange new world, Ren and Toby will have to decide on their next move. They can't stay locked away.... By turns dark, tender, violent, thoughtful, and uneasily hilarious, The Year of the Flood is Atwood at her most brilliant and inventive.

©2009 Margaret Atwood (P)2009 Random House

Length: 14 hrs and 4 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Light in the Ruins

The Light in the Ruins

2 ratings

Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of Midwives and The Sandcastle Girls comes a spellbinding novel of love, despair, and revenge - set in war-ravaged Tuscany. It is 1943: Tucked away in the idyllic hills south of Florence, the Rosatis, an Italian family of noble lineage, believe that the walls of their ancient villa will keep them safe from the war raging across Europe. Eighteen-year-old Cristina spends her days swimming in the pool, playing with her young niece and nephew, and wandering aimlessly amid the estate's gardens and olive groves. But when two soldiers, a German and an Italian, arrive at the villa asking to see an ancient Etruscan burial site, the Rosatis' bucolic tranquility is shattered. A young German lieutenant begins to court Cristina, the Nazis descend upon the estate demanding hospitality, and what was once their sanctuary becomes their prison. In 1955 Serafina Bettini, an investigator with the Florence police department, has her own demons. A beautiful woman, Serafina carefully hides her scars along with her haunting memories of the war. But when she is assigned to a gruesome new case - a serial killer targeting the Rosatis, murdering the remnants of the family one-by-one in cold blood - Serafina finds herself digging into a past that involves both the victims and her own tragic history. Set against an exquisitely rendered Italian countryside, The Light in the Ruins unveils a breathtaking story of moral paradox, human frailty, and the mysterious ways of the heart.

©2013 Chris Bohjalian (P)2013 Random House Audio

Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Echo

Echo

45 ratings

Summary

Audie Award, Middle Grade, 2016 Music, magic, and a real-life miracle meld in this virtuosic, genre-defying tour de force from storytelling maestro Pam Muñoz Ryan. Lost and alone in the forbidden Black Forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica. Decades later Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each becomes interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives, binding them by an invisible thread of destiny. All the children face daunting challenges: rescuing a father, protecting a brother, holding a family together. How their suspenseful solo stories converge in an orchestral crescendo will resound in your heart long after the last note has been struck. Richly imagined and structurally innovative, Echo pushes the boundaries of form and shows us what is possible in how we tell stories. With music by Corky Siegel.

©2015 Pam Muñoz Ryan (P)2015 Scholastic Inc.

Available on Audible
Cover art for Magic Time

Magic Time

1 rating

Summary

The world has changed forever. Across America, technology has been eclipsed by magic, and people are changing into the embodiments of their darkest desires and deepest fears. In this new time, former lawyer Cal Griffin has united a small group of outcasts to battle the chaos. Searching for the source of the unholy phenomenon, and to save Cal's sister, Tina, these unlikely heroes make their way cross country, led by the visions of a lunatic and the fragile song of a blind man. Hidden within ancient burial mounds, a secret paradise may offer the chance of hope, if they can find Tina. But first they must make their way to Chicago to battle a primal monster, and the darkness within themselves.

©2002 Paper Route Inc. (P)2004 Blackstone Audiobooks

Length: 14 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for Encyclical on Climate Change and Inequality

Encyclical on Climate Change and Inequality

Summary

The complete text of the landmark encyclical letter from Pope Francis that, as Time magazine reported, "rocked the international community". In the Encyclical on Climate Change and Inequality, the beloved pope exhorts the world to combat environmental degradation and its impact on the poor. In a stirring clarion call that is not aimed merely at Catholic listeners but rather at a wide lay audience, the pope cites the overwhelming scientific evidence of climate change and does not hesitate to detail how it is the result of a historic level of unequal distribution of wealth. It is, in short, as the New York Times labeled it, "An urgent call to action...intended to persuade followers around the world [to] change their behavior, in hopes of protecting a fragile planet." With an insightful and informative introduction by Harvard professor Naomi Oreskes, famed for her best-selling Merchants of Doubt: How a Handful of Scientists Obscured the Truth on Issues from Tobacco Smoke to Global Warming.

©2014 Libreria Editrice Vaticana (P)2015 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Facts and Fears

49 ratings

Summary

New York Times best seller The former director of National Intelligence's candid and compelling account of the intelligence community's successes - and failures - in facing some of the greatest threats to America When he stepped down in January 2017 as the fourth United States director of national intelligence, James Clapper had been President Obama's senior intelligence adviser for six and a half years, longer than his three predecessors combined. He led the US intelligence community through a period that included the raid on Osama bin Laden, the Benghazi attack, the leaks of Edward Snowden, and Russia's influence operation during the 2016 US election campaign.  In Facts and Fears, Clapper traces his career through the growing threat of cyber attacks, his relationships with presidents and Congress, and the truth about Russia's role in the presidential election. He describes, in the wake of Snowden and WikiLeaks, his efforts to make intelligence more transparent and to push back against the suspicion that Americans' private lives are subject to surveillance. Finally, it was living through Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election and seeing how the foundations of American democracy were - and continue to be - undermined by a foreign power that led him to break with his instincts honed through more than five decades in the intelligence profession to share his inside experience. Clapper considers such controversial questions as: Is intelligence ethical? Is it moral to intercept communications or to photograph closed societies from orbit? What are the limits of what we should be allowed to do? What protections should we give to the private citizens of the world, not to mention our fellow Americans? Are there times when intelligence officers can lose credibility as unbiased reporters of hard truths by inserting themselves into policy decisions? Facts and Fears offers a privileged look inside the US intelligence community and, with the frankness and professionalism for which James Clapper is known, addresses some of the most difficult challenges in our nation's history.

©2018 James R. Clapper and Trey Brown (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 18 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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Dangerous Mystic

Summary

Life and times of the 14th-century German spiritual leader Meister Eckhart, whose theory of a personal path to the divine-inspired thinkers from Jean Paul Sartre to Thomas Merton, and most recently, Eckhart Tolle. Meister Eckhart was a medieval Christian mystic whose wisdom powerfully appeals to seekers seven centuries after his death. In the modern era, Eckhart's writings have struck a chord with thinkers as diverse as Heidegger, Merton, Sartre, John Paul II, and the current Dalai Lama. He is the inspiration for the best-selling New Age author Eckhart Tolle's pen name, and his 14th-century quotes have become an online sensation. Today, a variety of Christians, as well as many Zen Buddhists, Sufi Muslims, Jewish Cabbalists, and various spiritual seekers, all claim Eckhart as their own. Meister Eckhart preached a personal, internal path to God at a time when the Church could not have been more hierarchical and ritualistic. Then and now, Eckhart’s revolutionary method of direct access to ultimate reality offers a profoundly subjective approach that is at once intuitive and pragmatic, philosophical yet non-rational, and, above all, universally accessible. This "dangerous mystic’s" teachings challenge the very nature of religion, yet the man himself never directly challenged the Church. Eckhart was one of the most learned theologians of his day, but he was also a man of the world who had worked as an administrator for his religious order and taught for years at the University of Paris. His personal path from conventional friar to professor to lay preacher culminated in a spiritual philosophy that combined the teachings of an array of pagan and Christian writers, as well as Muslim and Jewish philosophers. His revolutionary decision to take his approach to the common people garnered him many enthusiastic followers as well as powerful enemies. After Eckhart’s death and papal censure, many religious women and clerical supporters, known as the Friends of God, kept his legacy alive through the centuries, albeit underground until the master’s dramatic rediscovery by modern Protestants and Catholics. Dangerous Mystic grounds Meister Eckhart in a world that is simultaneously familiar and alien. In the midst of this medieval society, a few decades before the Black Death, Eckhart boldly preached to captivated crowds a timeless method, a "wayless way", of directly experiencing the divine.

©2018 Joel F. Harrington (P)2018 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 13 hrs and 35 mins
Available on Audible
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Greasy Bend

Summary

Tribal policeman Bill Maytubby and Deputy Hannah Bond team up again to solve two gruesome murders in this follow-up to Nail's Crossing In a driving sleet storm, a farmer has discovered a body snagged on cottonwood roots in the Washita River. Johnston County deputy Hannah Bond realizes it's her elderly friend, Alice. Meanwhile, at the Golden Play Casino, robbers posing as armored-car guards kill a local stickball hero and friend of Chickasaw Lighthorse Police detective Bill Maytubby.  The trail leads through the quarry-scarred Oklahoma badlands to a remote airstrip and a planeload of drugs and untraceable automatic weapons. Also somehow connected are a shady coin-op vending company; a neo-Nazi compound outside Paris, Texas; and a headless janitor in a train-mangled van. As the net tightens, the smugglers get wind of their pursuers and converge on Maytubby and Bond at Greasy Bend Bridge.

©2019 Kris Lackey (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Kris Lackey
Length: 6 hrs and 27 mins
Available on Audible
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The Inquisitor's Tale

5 ratings

Summary

The best-selling author of A Tale Dark and Grimm takes on medieval times in an exciting and hilarious new adventure about history, religion...farting dragons.  1242. On a dark night, travelers from across France cross paths at an inn and begin to tell stories of three children: William, an oblate on a mission from his monastery; Jacob, a Jewish boy who has fled his burning village; and Jeanne, a peasant girl who hides her prophetic visions. They are accompanied by Jeanne’s loyal greyhound, Gwenforte...recently brought back from the dead. As the narrator collects their tales, the story of these three unlikely allies begins to come together. Their adventures take them on a chase through France to escape prejudice and persecution and save precious and holy texts from being burned. They’re taken captive by knights, sit alongside a king, and save the land from a farting dragon. And as their quest drives them forward to a final showdown at Mont Saint-Michel, all will come to question if these children can perform the miracles of saints.  Beloved best-selling author Adam Gidwitz makes his long awaited return with his first new world since his hilarious and critically acclaimed Grimm series. Filled with Adam’s trademark style and humor, The Inquisitor’s Tale is bold storytelling that’s richly researched and adventure-packed.  Read by Vikas Adam, Mark Bramhall, Jonathan Cowley, Kimberly Farr, Adam Gidwitz, Ann Marie Lee, Bruce Mann, John H. Mayer, and Arthur Morey  Features medieval music performed by Benjamin Bagby of Sequentia. 

Public Domain (P)2016 Listening Library

Available on Audible
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American Desperado

42 ratings

Summary

In 2008 veteran journalist Evan Wright, acclaimed for his New York Times best-selling book Generation Kill and co-writer of the Emmy-winning HBO series it spawned, began a series of conversations with super-criminal Jon Roberts, star of the fabulously successful documentary Cocaine Cowboys. Those conversations would last three years, during which time Wright came to realize that Roberts was much more than the de-facto “transportation chief” of the Medellin Cartel during the 1980s, much more than a facilitator of a national drug epidemic. As Wright’s tape recorder whirred and Roberts unburdened himself of hundreds of jaw-dropping tales, it became clear that perhaps no one in history had broken so many laws with such willful abandon. Roberts, in fact, seemed to be a prodigy of criminality – but one with a remarkable self-awareness and a fierce desire to protect his son from following the same path. American Desperado is Roberts’ no-holds-barred account of being born into Mafia royalty, witnessing his first murder at the age of seven, becoming a hunter-assassin in Vietnam, returning to New York to become -- at age 22 -- one of the city’s leading nightclub impresarios, then journeying to Miami where in a few short years he would rise to become the Medellin Cartel’s most effective smuggler. But that’s just half the tale. The roster of Roberts’ friends and acquaintances reads like a Who’s Who of the latter half of the 20th century and includes everyone from Jimi Hendrix, Richard Pryor, and O.J. Simpson to Carlo Gambino, Meyer Lansky, and Manuel Noriega. Nothing if not colorful, Roberts surrounded himself with beautiful women, drove his souped-up street car at a top speed of 180 miles per hour, shared his bed with a 200-pound cougar, and employed a 6”6” professional wrestler called “The Thing” as his bodyguard. Ultimately, Roberts became so powerful that he attracted the attention of the Republican Party’s leadership, was wooed by them, and even was co-opted by the CIA for which he carried out its secret agenda. Scrupulously documented and relentlessly propulsive, this collaboration between a bloodhound journalist and one of the most audacious criminals ever is like no other crime book you’ve ever read. Jon Roberts may be the only criminal who changed the course of American history.

©2011 Evan Wright (P)2011 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Big Finish

1 rating

Summary

One of Goodreads Top 25 Feel-Good and Escapist Books to Read in Quarantine as seen in USA Today "[A] funny, winning debut." (People)  “Delightfully quirky and endearing...an absolute pleasure to read!" (Number one New York Times best-selling author Emily Giffin) Meet Duffy, an old curmudgeon who lives in an assisted-living home. Meet Josie, a desperate young woman who climbs through his window. Together, they’re going to learn it’s never too late - or too early - to change your ways. For Duffy Sinclair, life boils down to one simple thing: maintaining his residence at the idyllic Centennial Assisted Living. Without it, he’s destined for the roach-infested nursing home down the road - and after wasting the first 88 years of his life, he refuses to waste away for the rest. So, he keeps his shenanigans to the bare minimum with the help of his straight-laced best friend and roommate, Carl Upton.  But when Carl’s granddaughter Josie climbs through their bedroom window with booze on her breath and a black eye, Duffy’s faced with trouble that’s sticking around and hard to hide - from Centennial’s management and Josie’s toxic boyfriend. Before he knows it, he’s running a covert operation that includes hitchhiking and barhopping.  He might as well write himself a one-way ticket to the nursing home...or the morgue. Yet Duffy’s all in. Because thanks to an unlikely friendship that becomes fast family - his life doesn’t boil down the same anymore. Not when he finally has a chance to leave a legacy.  In a funny, insightful, and life-affirming debut, Brooke Fossey delivers an unflinching look at growing old, living large, and loving big, as told by a wise-cracking man who didn’t see any of it coming.

©2020 Brooke Fossey (P)2020 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 10 hrs and 35 mins
Available on Audible
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Real Magic

145 ratings

Summary

The chief scientist at the Institute of Noetic Sciences (IONS) turns a critical eye toward such practices as telepathy, clairvoyance, precognition, and psychokinesis. Are such powers really possible? Science says yes. According to noted scientist and best-selling author of The Conscious Universe, Dean Radin, magic is a natural aspect of reality, and each of us can tap into this power with diligent practice. But wait, aren't things like ESP and telepathy just wishful thinking and flights of the imagination? Not according to the author, who worked on the US government's top secret psychic espionage program known as Stargate. Radin has spent the last 40 years conducting controlled experiments that demonstrate that thoughts are things, that we can sense others' emotions and intentions from a distance, that intuition is more powerful than we thought, and that we can tap into the power of intention (think The Secret, only on a more realistic and scientific level). These dormant powers can help us to lead more interesting and fulfilling lives. Beginning with a brief history of magic over the centuries (what was called magic 2,000 years ago is turning out to be scientific fact today), a review of the scientific evidence for magic, a series of simple but effective magical techniques (the key is mental focus, something elite athletes know a lot about), Radin then offers a vision of a scientifically informed magic and explains why magic will play a key role in frontiers of science.

©2018 Dean Radin (P)2018 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Dean Radin
Length: 8 hrs and 8 mins
Available on Audible
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The Summer That Melted Everything

1 rating

Summary

Fielding Bliss has never forgotten the long, crazy summer of 1984, when a heat wave scorched Breathed, Ohio. It was the year he became friends with the devil. Sal seems to appear out of nowhere - a bruised and tattered 13-year-old boy claiming to be the devil himself answering an invitation. Fielding Bliss, the son of a local prosecutor, brings him home, where he's welcomed into the Bliss family, who assume he's a runaway from a nearby farm town. When word spreads that the devil has come to Breathed, not everyone is happy to welcome this self-proclaimed fallen angel. Murmurs follow him, and tensions rise along with the temperatures as an unbearable heat wave rolls into town right along with him. As strange accidents start to occur, some in the town, riled by the feverish heat, start to believe that Sal is exactly who he claims to be. While the Bliss family wrestles with their own personal demons, a fanatic drives the town to the brink of a catastrophe that will change this sleepy Ohio backwater forever.

©2016 Tiffany McDaniel (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 37 mins
Available on Audible
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Say What You Mean

20 ratings

Summary

Find your voice, speak your truth, listen deeply - a guide to more meaningful and mindful conversations. We spend so much of our lives talking to each other, but how much are we simply running on automatic - relying on old habits and hoping for the best? Are we able to truly hear others and speak our mind in a clear and kind way, without needing to get defensive or go on the attack?  In this groundbreaking synthesis of mindfulness, somatics, and nonviolent communication, Oren Jay Sofer offers simple yet powerful practices to develop healthy, effective, and satisfying ways of communicating. The techniques in Say What You Mean will help you to: Feel confident during conversation Stay focused on what really matters in an interaction Listen for the authentic concerns behind what others say Reduce anxiety before and during difficult conversations Find nourishment in day-to-day interactions

©2018 Oren Jay Sofer (P)2019 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Magicians

175 ratings

Summary

A thrilling and original coming-of- age novel about a young man practicing magic in the real world. Quentin Coldwater is brilliant but miserable. A senior in high school, he's still secretly preoccupied with a series of fantasy novels he read as a child, set in a magical land called Fillory. Imagine his surprise when he finds himself unexpectedly admitted to a very secret, very exclusive college of magic in upstate New York, where he receives a thorough and rigorous education in the craft of modern sorcery. He also discovers all the other things people learn in college: friendship, love, sex, booze, and boredom. Something is missing, though. Magic doesn't bring Quentin the happiness and adventure he dreamed it would. After graduation, he and his friends make a stunning discovery: Fillory is real. But the land of Quentin's fantasies turns out to be much darker and more dangerous than he could have imagined. His childhood dream becomes a nightmare with a shocking truth at its heart. At once psychologically piercing and magnificently absorbing, The Magicians boldly moves into uncharted literary territory, imagining magic as practiced by real people, with their capricious desires and volatile emotions. Lev Grossman creates an utterly original world in which good and evil aren't black and white, love and sex aren't simple or innocent, and power comes at a terrible price.

©2009 Lev Grossman (P)2009 Penguin

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Lev Grossman
Length: 17 hrs and 24 mins
Available on Audible
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The Boys in the Boat (Young Readers Adaptation)

3 ratings

Summary

A beloved story about the Greatest Generation freshly adapted for the next generation Berlin, 1936. The Olympic finals of the eight-oared rowing race. Germany, Italy, USA. The American boat touches the finish line first, beating all odds and sending Hitler away in a silent rage. In the midst of the Great Depression, the nine rowers showed the world what true grit really meant. They were western, working-class boys who never expected to beat the elite teams of the East Coast and Great Britain, yet they did. At the center of the tale is Joe Rantz, whose personal struggle - and ultimate triumph - captures the spirit of his generation, the one that would prove in the coming years that the Nazis could not prevail over American determination and optimism. This deeply emotional yet easily accessible middle-grade adaptation of the New York Times best-selling The Boys in the Boat shows listners how we can find hope in the most desperate of times.

©2015 Daniel James Brown (P)2015 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 5 hrs and 36 mins
Available on Audible
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Nail's Crossing

1 rating

Summary

This debut mystery from a fresh voice in Southwestern fiction stakes out the common ground between Tony Hillerman, Elmore Leonard, and Cormac McCarthy. In a remote corner of the Chickasaw Nation, tribal Lighthorse policeman Bill Maytubby and county deputy Hannah Bond discover the buzzard-ravaged body of Majesty Tate, a young drifter with a blank past. They comb Oklahoma's rock prairie, river bottoms, and hard-bitten small towns for traces of her last days. Tate was seen dancing with Austin Love, a violent local meth dealer fresh out of prison. An Oklahoma City motel clerk connects her with an aspiring politician. An oil-patch roustabout and a shady itinerant preacher provide dubious leads. Ne'er-do-wells start dying off. A fluke lead propels Maytubby deep into Louisiana's bayou country, where a Cajun shrimper puts him on the scent of a bizarre conspiracy. He and Bond reunite in the Chickasaw Nation for the eventual face-off at Nail's Crossing.

©2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc. (P)2017 Kris Lackey

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Kris Lackey
Length: 6 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible
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The Devil All the Time

37 ratings

Summary

From the acclaimed author of Knockemstiff—called “powerful, remarkable, exceptional” by the Los Angeles Times—comes a dark and riveting vision of America that delivers literary excitement in the highest degree. In The Devil All the Time, Donald Ray Pollock has written a novel that marries the twisted intensity of Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers with the religious and Gothic over­tones of Flannery O’Connor at her most haunting. Set in rural southern Ohio and West Virginia, The Devil All the Time follows a cast of compelling and bizarre characters from the end of World War II to the 1960s. There’s Willard Russell, tormented veteran of the carnage in the South Pacific, who can’t save his beautiful wife, Charlotte, from an agonizing death by cancer no matter how much sacrifi­cial blood he pours on his “prayer log.” There’s Carl and Sandy Henderson, a husband-and-wife team of serial kill­ers, who troll America’s highways searching for suitable models to photograph and exterminate. There’s the spider-handling preacher Roy and his crippled virtuoso-guitar-playing sidekick, Theodore, running from the law. And caught in the middle of all this is Arvin Eugene Russell, Willard and Charlotte’s orphaned son, who grows up to be a good but also violent man in his own right. Donald Ray Pollock braids his plotlines into a taut narrative that will leave readers astonished and deeply moved. With his first novel, he proves himself a master storyteller in the grittiest and most uncompromising American grain.

©2011 Donald Ray Pollock (P)2011 Random House

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 9 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
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The High Mountains of Portugal

13 ratings

Summary

The author of the best-selling Life of Pi returns to the storytelling power and luminous wisdom of his master novel.

In Lisbon in 1904, a young man named Tomás discovers an old journal. It hints at the existence of an extraordinary artifact that - if he can find it - would redefine history. Traveling in one of Europe's earliest automobiles, he sets out in search of this strange treasure.

Thirty-five years later, a Portuguese pathologist devoted to the murder mysteries of Agatha Christie finds himself at the center of a mystery of his own and drawn into the consequences of Tomás' quest.

Fifty years on, a Canadian senator takes refuge in his ancestral village in Northern Portugal, grieving the loss of his beloved wife. But he arrives with an unusual companion: a chimpanzee. And there the century-old quest will come to an unexpected conclusion.

Filled with tenderness, humor, and endless surprise, The High Mountains of Portugal - part quest, part ghost story, part contemporary fable - offers a haunting exploration of great love and great loss, asking questions about faith and lack of faith that are at the heart of all of Yann Martel's novels.

©2015 Yann Martel (P)2015 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Yann Martel
Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
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The Magician King

90 ratings

Summary

Return to Fillory in the riveting sequel to The New York Times best-seller and literary phenomenon of 2009: The Magicians. The Magicians was praised as a triumph by readers and critics of both mainstream and fantasy literature. Now Grossman takes us back to Fillory, where the Brakebills graduates have fled the sorrows of the mundane world, only to face terrifying new challenges. Quentin and his friends are now the kings and queens of Fillory, but the days and nights of royal luxury are starting to pall. After a morning hunt takes a sinister turn, Quentin and his old friend Julia charter a magical sailing ship and set out on an errand to the wild outer reaches of their kingdom. Their pleasure cruise becomes an adventure when the two are unceremoniously dumped back into the last place Quentin ever wants to see: his parent's house in Chesterton, Massachusetts. And only the black, twisted magic that Julia learned on the streets can save them. The Magician King is a grand voyage into the dark, glittering heart of magic, an epic quest for the Harry Potter generation. It also introduces a powerful new voice, that of Julia, whose angry genius is thrilling. Once again Grossman proves that he is the modern heir to C.S. Lewis and at the cutting edge of literary fantasy.

©2011 Lev Grossman (P)2011 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Lev Grossman
Length: 15 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible
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Genghis Khan and the Quest for God

1 rating

Summary

A landmark biography by the New York Times best-selling author of Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World that reveals how Genghis harnessed the power of religion to rule the largest empire the world has ever known.  Throughout history the world’s greatest conquerors have made their mark not just on the battlefield, but in the societies they have transformed. Genghis Khan conquered by arms and bravery, but he ruled by commerce and religion. He created the world’s greatest trading network and drastically lowered taxes for merchants, but he knew that if his empire was going to last, he would need something stronger and more binding than trade. He needed religion. And so, unlike the Christian, Taoist and Muslim conquerors who came before him, he gave his subjects freedom of religion. Genghis lived in the 13th century, but he struggled with many of the same problems we face today: How should one balance religious freedom with the need to reign in fanatics? Can one compel rival religions - driven by deep seated hatred - to live together in peace?  A celebrated anthropologist whose best-selling Genghis Khan and the Making of the Modern World radically transformed our understanding of the Mongols and their legacy, Jack Weatherford has spent18 years exploring areas of Mongolia closed until the fall of the Soviet Union and researching The Secret History of the Mongols, an astonishing document written in code that was only recently discovered. He pored through archives and found groundbreaking evidence of Genghis’s influence on the founding fathers and his essential impact on Thomas Jefferson. Genghis Khan and the Quest for God is a masterpiece of erudition and insight, his most personal and resonant work.

©2016 Jack Weatherford (P)2016 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 14 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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Sandworm

31 ratings

Summary

From Wired senior writer Andy Greenberg comes the true story of the most devastating cyberattack in history and the desperate hunt to identify and track the elite Russian agents behind it. "Much more than a true-life techno-thriller...a tour through a realm that is both invisible and critical to the daily lives of every person alive in the 21st century." (Los Angeles Times) In 2014, the world witnessed the start of a mysterious series of cyberattacks. Targeting American utility companies, NATO, and electric grids in Eastern Europe, the strikes grew ever more brazen. They culminated in the summer of 2017, when the malware known as NotPetya was unleashed, penetrating, disrupting, and paralyzing some of the world's largest businesses - from drug manufacturers to software developers to shipping companies. At the attack's epicenter in Ukraine, ATMs froze. The railway and postal systems shut down. Hospitals went dark. NotPetya spread around the world, inflicting an unprecedented 10 billion dollars in damage - the largest, most devastating cyberattack the world had ever seen. The hackers behind these attacks are quickly gaining a reputation as the most dangerous team of cyberwarriors in history: a group known as Sandworm. Working in the service of Russia's military intelligence agency, they represent a persistent, highly skilled force, one whose talents are matched by their willingness to launch broad, unrestrained attacks on the most critical infrastructure of their adversaries. They target government and private sector, military, and civilians alike. A chilling, globe-spanning detective story, Sandworm considers the danger this force poses to our national security and stability. As the Kremlin's role in foreign government manipulation comes into greater focus, Sandworm exposes the realities not just of Russia's global digital offensive, but of an era where warfare ceases to be waged on the battlefield. It reveals how the lines between digital and physical conflict, between wartime and peacetime, have begun to blur - with world-shaking implications.

©2019 Andy Greenberg (P)2019 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 12 hrs and 2 mins
Available on Audible
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Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant (AmazonClassics Edition)

Summary

In this epic 1885 work, General Ulysses S. Grant, 18th president of the United States and staunch supporter of the Union cause, set the record straight on his storied life and career. At its heart is Grant, victor and eyewitness to the defining moments of the Civil War, including the Battles of Shiloh, Chattanooga, and the Wilderness; the Siege of Vicksburg; and the Appomattox campaign, which concluded with the surrender of Confederate general Robert E. Lee.  Featuring personal correspondence, Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant reveals the candid, often witty, and pragmatic military genius as one of the most vital observers of war and peace in the history of American letters. Revised edition: Previously published as Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant, this edition of Personal Memoirs of Ulysses S. Grant (AmazonClassics Edition) includes editorial revisions.

Public Domain (P)2020 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 29 hrs and 48 mins
Available on Audible
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Hour of the Witch

Summary

A Read It Forward Most Anticipated Book of 2021 A young Puritan woman - faithful, resourceful, but afraid of the demons that dog her soul - plots her escape from a violent marriage in this riveting and propulsive historical thriller from the number-one New York Times best-selling author of The Flight Attendant. Boston, 1662. Mary Deerfield is 24 years old. Her skin is porcelain, her eyes delft blue, and in England she might have had many suitors. But here in the New World, amid this community of saints, Mary is the second wife of Thomas Deerfield, a man as cruel as he is powerful. When Thomas, prone to drunken rage, drives a three-tined fork into the back of Mary's hand, she resolves that she must divorce him to save her life. But in a world where every neighbor is watching for signs of the devil, a woman like Mary - a woman who harbors secret desires and finds it difficult to tolerate the brazen hypocrisy of so many men in the colony - soon becomes herself the object of suspicion and rumor. When tainted objects are discovered buried in Mary's garden, when a boy she has treated with herbs and simples dies, and when their servant girl runs screaming in fright from her home, Mary must fight to not only escape her marriage, but also the gallows.  A twisting, tightly plotted thriller from one of our greatest storytellers, Hour of the Witch is a timely and terrifying story of socially sanctioned brutality and the original American witch hunt.

©2021 Chris Bohjalian (P)2021 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Road Home

Summary

The Road Home lies in the shadows of Manifest Destiny and Wounded Knee; it is etched into the landscape of an old man’s memory and into the stubborn dreams of a young man’s heart.  In one of Jim Harrison’s greatest works, five members of the Northridge family narrate the tangled epic of their history on the expanses of the Nebraska plains. They strive to understand their fates, to reconcile with demons of the past, to live in accordance with the land, and to die with grace. As the family grapples with the mysterious forces that both pull them apart and draw them inextricably back together, they must come to term with life’s greatest and hardest lessons: the deception of passion, the pain of love, the vitality of art, and the supplication to nature’s generosity and fury.

©1998 Jim Harrison (P)2021 Blackstone Publishing

Available on Audible
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West of the Tularosa

Summary

Louis L'Amour said that the West was no place for the frightened or the mean. It was a "big country needing big men and women to live in it", This volume presents eight of L'Amour's ever-popular short stories - history that lives forever.

©2014 Louis L'Amour and Jon Tuska (P)2014 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Length: 5 hrs and 53 mins
Available on Audible
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The Spymasters

3 ratings

Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of The Gatekeepers, a remarkable, behind-the-scenes look at what it’s like to run the world’s most powerful intelligence agency, and how the CIA is often a crucial counterforce against presidents threatening to overstep the powers of their office. Only 11 men and one woman are alive today who have made the life-and-death decisions that come with running the world’s most powerful and influential intelligence service. With unprecedented, deep access to nearly all these individuals plus several of their predecessors, Chris Whipple tells the story of an agency that answers to the United States president alone, but whose activities - spying, espionage, and covert action - take place on every continent. At pivotal moments, the CIA acts as a brake on rogue presidents, starting in the mid-70s with DCI Richard Helms’s refusal to conceal Richard Nixon’s criminality and continuing to the present as the actions of a CIA whistleblower ignited impeachment proceedings against Donald Trump.  Since its inception in 1947, the Central Intelligence Agency has been a powerful player on the world stage, operating largely in the shadows to protect American interests. For The Spymasters, Whipple conducted extensive, exclusive interviews with nearly every living CIA director, pulling back the curtain on the world’s elite spy agencies and showing how the CIA partners - or clashes - with counterparts in Britain, France, Germany, Israel, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Russia. Topics covered in the book include attempts by presidents to use the agency for their own ends; simmering problems in the Middle East and Asia; rogue nuclear threats; and cyberwarfare.  A revelatory, behind-the-scenes look, The Spymasters recounts seven decades of CIA activity and elicits predictions about the issues - and threats - that will engage the attention of future operatives and analysts. Including eye-opening interviews with George Tenet, John Brennan, Leon Panetta, and David Petraeus, as well as those who’ve just recently departed the agency, this is a timely, essential, and important contribution to current events.

©2020 Chris Whipple (P)2020 Simon & Schuster Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 14 hrs and 39 mins
Available on Audible
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Don't Know Much About Geography: Revised and Updated Edition

Summary

From bestselling author Kenneth C. Davis comes a treasure trove of answers to questions about our world. Was there an Atlantis? What's the smallest country in the world? What's the difference between a jungle and a rain forest? Kenneth C. Davis, author of Don't Know Much About® History, Don't Know Much About the Civil War and Don't Know Much About the Bible, turns his inimitable wit and wide-ranging knowledge to the subject of geography, and proves once and for all that there is a lot more to it than labeling countries on a map. From often amusing perceptions people have had through the ages about the world and the universe to the changing map of today, Davis shows how geography is really a great crossroad of many fields: biology, meteorology, astronomy, history, economics, and even politics. In this lively, entertaining, and endlessly fascinating presentation, you'll hear about the personalities that helped shape the world and learn the answers to questions that have vexed most of us since grade school. Along the way, Davis offers an affectionate ode to the earth: a celebration of the earth, a searching investigation of the destruction of our habitat, and a practical guide to saving our home planet. For anyone who has felt geographically ignorant ever since gas stations stopped handing out free maps, Don't Know Much About Geography is enormously informative entertainment.

©1993 Reed Business Information, Inc. (P)2013 Random House Audio

Category: History, World
Length: 12 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
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Remember Me Like This

Summary

A gripping novel with the pace of a thriller but the nuanced characterization and deep empathy of some of the literary canon’s most beloved novels, Remember Me Like This introduces Bret Anthony Johnston as one of the most gifted storytellers writing today. With his sophisticated and emotionally taut plot and his shimmering prose, Johnston reveals that only in caring for one another can we save ourselves. Four years have passed since Justin Campbell’s disappearance, a tragedy that rocked the small town of Southport, Texas. Did he run away? Was he kidnapped? Did he drown in the bay? As the Campbells search for answers, they struggle to hold what’s left of their family together. Then, one afternoon, the impossible happens. The police call to report that Justin has been found only miles away, in the neighboring town, and, most important, he appears to be fine. Though the reunion is a miracle, Justin’s homecoming exposes the deep rifts that have diminished his family, the wounds they all carry that may never fully heal. Trying to return to normal, his parents do their best to ease Justin back into his old life. But as thick summer heat takes hold, violent storms churn in the Gulf and in the Campbells’ hearts. When a reversal of fortune lays bare the family’s greatest fears - and offers perhaps the only hope for recovery - each of them must fight to keep the ties that bind them from permanently tearing apart.

©2014 Bret Anthony Johnston (P)2014 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 12 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
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The Other Americans

4 ratings

Summary

Finalist for the National Book Award in Fiction Finalist for the Kirkus Prize in Fiction Winner of the Arab American Book Award in Fiction Named a Best Book of the Year by Time, the Washington Post, BookPage, NPR, the Guardian, Variety, New York Public Library, Minneapolis Star Tribune, Dallas Morning News, and Kirkus Reviews.   From the Pulitzer Prize finalist and author of The Moor’s Account, here is a timely and powerful novel about the suspicious death of a Moroccan immigrant - at once a family saga, a murder mystery, and a love story, informed by the treacherous fault lines of American culture.  Late one spring night, Driss Guerraoui, a Moroccan immigrant living in California, is walking across a darkened intersection when he is killed by a speeding car. The repercussions of his death bring together a diverse cast of characters: Guerraoui’s daughter, Nora, a jazz composer who returns to the small town in the Mojave she thought she'd left for good; his widow, Maryam, who still pines after her life in the old country; Efraín, an undocumented witness whose fear of deportation prevents him from coming forward; Jeremy, an old friend of Nora's and an Iraq War veteran; Coleman, a detective who is slowly discovering her son's secrets; Anderson, a neighbor trying to reconnect with his family; and the murdered man himself.  As the characters - deeply divided by race, religion, and class - tell their stories, connections among them emerge, even as Driss’ family confronts its secrets, a town faces its hypocrisies, and love, messy and unpredictable, is born.

©2019 Laila Lalami (P)2019 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Whore's Child and Other Stories

Summary

To this irresistible debut collection of short stories, Richard Russo brings the same bittersweet wit, deep knowledge of human nature, and spellbinding narrative gifts that distinguish his best-selling novels. His themes are the imperfect bargains of marriage; the discoveries and disillusionments of childhood; the unwinnable battles men and women insist on fighting with the past. A cynical Hollywood moviemaker confronts his dead wife’s lover and abruptly realizes the depth of his own passion. As his parents’ marriage disintegrates, a precocious fifth-grader distracts himself with meditations on baseball, spaghetti, and his place in the universe. And in the title story, an elderly nun enters a college creative-writing class and plays havoc with its tidy notions of fact and fiction. The Whore’s Child is further proof that Russo is one of the finest writers we have, unsparingly truthful yet hugely compassionate.

©2003 Richard Russo (P)2011 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Magician's Land

82 ratings

Summary

The stunning conclusion to the New York Times best-selling Magicians trilogy. Quentin Coldwater has been cast out of Fillory, the secret magical land of his childhood dreams. With nothing left to lose he returns to where his story began, the Brakebills Preparatory College of Magic. But he can't hide from his past, and it's not long before it comes looking for him. Along with Plum, a brilliant young undergraduate with a dark secret of her own, Quentin sets out on a crooked path through a magical demimonde of grey magic and desperate characters. But all roads lead back to Fillory, and his new life takes him to old haunts, like Antarctica and the Netherlands, and buried secrets, and old friends he thought were lost forever. He uncovers the key to a sorcerous masterwork, a spell that could create magical utopia, a new Fillory - but casting it will set in motion a chain of events that will bring Earth and Fillory crashing together. To save them he will have to risk sacrificing everything. The Magician's Land is an intricate thriller, a fantastical epic and an epic of love and redemption that brings the Magicians trilogy to a magnificent climax, confirming it as one of the great achievements in modern fantasy. It's the story of a boy becoming a man, an apprentice becoming a master, and a broken land finally becoming whole.

©2014 Lev Grossman (P)2014 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Lev Grossman
Length: 16 hrs and 27 mins
Available on Audible
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Three Cups of Deceit

5 ratings

Summary

Greg Mortenson has built a global reputation as a selfless humanitarian and children's crusader, and he's been nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. He is also not what he appears to be. As acclaimed author Jon Krakauer discovered, Mortenson has not only fabricated substantial parts of his best-selling books Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools, but has also misused millions of dollars donated by unsuspecting admirers like Krakauer himself. This is the tragic tale of good intentions gone very wrong. 100% of Jon Krakauer's proceeds from the sale of Three Cups of Deceit will be donated to the "Stop Girl Trafficking" project at the American Himalayan Foundation (www.himalayan-foundation.org/live/project/stopgirltrafficking).

©2011 Jeri Smith-Ready (P)2011 Random House

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jon Krakauer
Length: 2 hrs and 55 mins
Available on Audible
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Benediction

1 rating

Summary

Shortlisted for The Folio Prize 2014 From the beloved and best-selling author of Plainsong and Eventide comes a story of life and death, and the ties that bind, once again set out on the High Plains in Holt, Colorado. When Dad Lewis is diagnosed with terminal cancer, he and his wife, Mary, must work together to make his final days as comfortable as possible. Their daughter, Lorraine, hastens back from Denver to help look after him; her devotion softens the bitter absence of their estranged son, Frank, but this cannot be willed away and remains a palpable presence for all three of them. Next door, a young girl named Alice moves in with her grandmother and contends with the painful memories that Dad's condition stirs up of her own mother's death. Meanwhile, the town’s newly arrived preacher attempts to mend his strained relationships with his wife and teenaged son, a task that proves all the more challenging when he faces the disdain of his congregation after offering more than they are accustomed to getting on a Sunday morning. And throughout, an elderly widow and her middle-aged daughter do everything they can to ease the pain of their friends and neighbors. Despite the travails that each of these families faces, together they form bonds strong enough to carry them through the most difficult of times. Bracing, sad and deeply illuminating, Benediction captures the fullness of life by representing every stage of it, including its extinction, as well as the hopes and dreams that sustain us along the way. Here Kent Haruf gives us his most indelible portrait yet of this small town and reveals, with grace and insight, the compassion, the suffering and, above all, the humanity of its inhabitants.

©2013 Kent Haruf (P)2013 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Kent Haruf
Length: 8 hrs and 49 mins
Available on Audible
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Angle of Repose

12 ratings

Summary

Winner of the Pulitzer Prize when it was first published in 1971, Angle of Repose has also been selected by the editorial board of the Modern Library as one of the hundred best novels of the 20th century. Wallace Stegner's uniquely American classic centers on Lyman Ward, a noted historian who relates a fictionalized biography of his pioneer grandparents at a time when he has become estranged from his own family. Through a combination of research, memory, and exaggeration, Ward voices ideas concerning the relationship between history and the present, art and life, parents and children, and husbands and wives. Like other great quests in literature, Lyman Ward's investigation leads him deep into the dark shadows of his own life. The result is a deeply moving novel that, through the prism of one family, illuminates the American present against the fascinating background of its past. Set in many parts of the West, Angle of Repose is a story of discovery - personal, historical, and geographical - that endures as Wallace Stegner's masterwork: an illumination of yesterday's reality that speaks to today's.

©1971 Wallace Stegner (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 22 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
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The Widower's Tale

1 rating

Summary

In a historic farmhouse outside Boston, seventy-year-old Percy Darling is settling happily into retirement: reading novels, watching old movies, and swimming naked in his pond. His routines are disrupted, however, when he is persuaded to let a locally beloved preschool take over his barn. As Percy sees his rural refuge overrun by children, parents, and teachers, he must reexamine the solitary life he has made in the three decades since the sudden death of his wife. No longer can he remain aloof from his community, his two grown daughters, or, to his shock, the precarious joy of falling in love. One relationship Percy treasures is the bond with his oldest grandchild, Robert, a premed student at Harvard. Robert has long assumed he will follow in the footsteps of his mother, a prominent physician, but he begins to question his ambitions when confronted by a charismatic roommate who preaches—and begins to practice—an extreme form of ecological activism, targeting Boston’s most affluent suburbs. Meanwhile, two other men become fatefully involved with Percy and Robert: Ira, a gay teacher at the preschool, and Celestino, a Guatemalan gardener who works for Percy’s neighbor, each one striving to overcome a sense of personal exile. Choices made by all four men, as well as by the women around them, collide forcefully on one lovely spring evening, upending everyone’s lives, but none more radically than Percy’s. With equal parts affection and satire, Julia Glass spins a captivating tale about the loyalties, rivalries, and secrets of a very particular family. Yet again, she plumbs the human heart brilliantly, dramatically, and movingly.

©2010 Random House Audio; 2010 Julia Glass

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Julia Glass
Length: 17 hrs and 49 mins
Available on Audible
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The Stranger in the Woods

90 ratings

Summary

For readers and listeners of Jon Krakauer and The Lost City of Z, a remarkable tale of survival and solitude - the true story of a man who lived alone in a tent in the Maine woods, never talking to another person and surviving by stealing supplies from nearby cabins for 27 years. In 1986, 20-year-old Christopher Knight left his home in Massachusetts, drove to Maine, and disappeared into the woods. He would not have a conversation with another human being until nearly three decades later, when he was arrested for stealing food. Living in a tent even in winter, he had survived by his wits and courage, developing ingenious ways to store food and water, to avoid freezing to death. He broke into nearby cottages for food, clothes, reading material, and other provisions, taking only what he needed, but terrifying a community never able to solve the mysterious burglaries. Based on extensive interviews with Knight himself, this is a vividly detailed account of the why and how of his secluded life - as well as the challenges he has faced returning to the world. A riveting story of survival that asks fundamental questions about solitude, community, and what makes a good life and a deeply moving portrait of a man who was determined to live his own way - and succeeded.

©2017 Michael Finkel (P)2017 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 6 hrs and 19 mins
Available on Audible
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Stone Mattress

1 rating

Summary

A collection of highly imaginative short pieces that speak to our times with deadly accuracy. Vintage Atwood creativity, intelligence, and humor: think Alias Grace. Margaret Atwood turns to short fiction for the first time since her 2006 collection, Moral Disorder, with nine tales of acute psychological insight and turbulent relationships bringing to mind her award-winning 1996 novel, Alias Grace. A recently widowed fantasy writer is guided through a stormy winter evening by the voice of her late husband in Alphinland, the first of three loosely linked stories about the romantic geometries of a group of writers and artists. In The Freeze-Dried Bridegroom, a man who bids on an auctioned storage space has a surprise. In Lusus Naturae, a woman born with a genetic abnormality is mistaken for a vampire. In Torching the Dusties, an elderly lady with Charles Bonnet syndrome comes to terms with the little people she keeps seeing, while a newly formed populist group gathers to burn down her retirement residence. And in Stone Mattress, a long-ago crime is avenged in the Arctic via a 1.9 billion-year-old stromatolite. In these nine tales, Margaret Atwood is at the top of her darkly humorous and seriously playful game. This audiobook edition includes a Reading Group Guide.

©2014 O.W. Toad, Ltd. (P)2015 Audible Inc.

Available on Audible
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Knockemstiff

2 ratings

Summary

In this unforgettable work of fiction, Donald Ray Pollock peers into the soul of a tough Midwestern American town to reveal the sad, stunted but resilient lives of its residents. Spanning a period from the mid-'60s to the late '90s, the linked stories that comprise Knockemstiff feature a cast of recurring characters who are woebegone, baffled, and depraved - but irresistibly, undeniably real. Rendered in the American vernacular with vivid imagery and a wry, dark sense of humor, these thwarted and sometimes violent lives jump off the page at the listener with inexorable force.  A father pumps his son full of steroids, so he can vicariously relive his days as a perpetual runner-up body builder. A psychotic rural recluse comes upon two siblings committing incest and feels compelled to take action. Donald Ray Pollock presents his characters and the sordid goings-on with a stern intelligence, a bracing absence of value judgments, and a refreshingly dark sense of bottom-dog humor.  With an artistic instinct honed on the works of Flannery O’Connor and Harry Crews, Pollock offers a powerful work of fiction in the classic American vein. Knockemstiff is a genuine entry into the literature of place. Audiobook Cast of Narrators: "Real Life" read by Kirby Heyborne "Dynamite Hole" read by Mark Bramhall "Knockemstiff" read by Macleod Andrews "Hair’s Fate" read by Andrew Eiden "Pills" read by Kirby Heyborne "Gianthomachy" read by David Garelick "Schott’s Bridge" read by Matt Godfrey "Lard" read by Macleod Andrews "Fish Sticks" read by Dan Woren "Bactine" read by Rob Shapiro "Discipline" read by R.C. Bray "Assailants" read by Dan Woren "Rainy Sunday" read by Amy Landon "Holler" read by Andrew Eiden "I Start Over" read by Joe Ochman

©2008 Donald Ray Pollock (P)2018 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Grant

71 ratings

Summary

The Number One New York Times Best Seller New York Times Book Review 10 Best Books of 2017 Pulitzer Prize winner Ron Chernow returns with a sweeping and dramatic portrait of one of our most compelling generals and presidents, Ulysses S. Grant.  Ulysses S. Grant's life has typically been misunderstood. All too often he is caricatured as a chronic loser and an inept businessman or as the triumphant but brutal Union general of the Civil War. But these stereotypes don't come close to capturing him, as Chernow reveals in his masterful biography, the first to provide a complete understanding of the general and president whose fortunes rose and fell with dizzying speed and frequency.  Before the Civil War, Grant was flailing. His business ventures had ended dismally, and despite distinguished service in the Mexican War, he ended up resigning from the army in disgrace amid recurring accusations of drunkenness. But in war, Grant began to realize his remarkable potential, soaring through the ranks of the Union army, prevailing at the battle of Shiloh and in the Vicksburg campaign, and ultimately defeating the legendary Confederate general Robert E. Lee. Along the way, Grant endeared himself to President Lincoln and became his most trusted general and the strategic genius of the war effort. Grant's military fame translated into a two-term presidency, but one plagued by corruption scandals involving his closest staff members.  More important, he sought freedom and justice for Black Americans, working to crush the Ku Klux Klan and earning the admiration of Frederick Douglass, who called him "the vigilant, firm, impartial, and wise protector of my race". After his presidency, he was again brought low by a dashing young swindler on Wall Street, only to resuscitate his image by working with Mark Twain to publish his memoirs, which are recognized as a masterpiece of the genre.  With lucidity, breadth, and meticulousness, Chernow finds the threads that bind these disparate stories together, shedding new light on the man whom Walt Whitman described as "nothing heroic...and yet the greatest hero". Chernow's probing portrait of Grant's lifelong struggle with alcoholism transforms our understanding of the man at the deepest level. This is America's greatest biographer, bringing movingly to life one of our finest but most underappreciated presidents. The definitive biography, Grant, is a grand synthesis of painstaking research and literary brilliance that makes sense of all sides of Grant's life, explaining how this simple Midwesterner could at once be so ordinary and so extraordinary.  Named one of the best books of the year by Goodreads • Amazon • The New York Times • Newsday • BookPage • Barnes and Noble • Wall Street Journal

©2017 Ron Chernow (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Ron Chernow
Length: 48 hrs and 2 mins
Available on Audible
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The Best and the Brightest

12 ratings

Summary

David Halberstam’s masterpiece, the defining history of the making of the Vietnam tragedy, with a foreword by Senator John McCain. "A rich, entertaining, and profound reading experience.” (The New York Times) Using portraits of America’s flawed policy makers and accounts of the forces that drove them, The Best and the Brightest reckons magnificently with the most important abiding question of our country’s recent history: Why did America become mired in Vietnam, and why did we lose? As the definitive single-volume answer to that question, this enthralling book has never been superseded. It is an American classic.  “The most comprehensive saga of how America became involved in Vietnam.... It is also the Iliad of the American empire and the Odyssey of this nation’s search for its idealistic soul. The Best and the Brightest is almost like watching an Alfred Hitchcock thriller.” (The Boston Globe)  “Deeply moving... We cannot help but feel the compelling power of this narrative.... Dramatic and tragic, a chain of events overwhelming in their force, a distant war embodying illusions and myths, terror and violence, confusions and courage, blindness, pride, and arrogance.” (Los Angeles Times)  “A fascinating tale of folly and self-deception... [An] absorbing, detailed, and devastatingly caustic tale of Washington in the days of the Caesars.” (The Washington Post Book World)  “Seductively readable... It is a staggeringly ambitious undertaking that is fully matched by Halberstam’s performance.... This is in all ways an admirable and necessary book.” (Newsweek)  “A story every American should read.” (St. Louis Post-Dispatch)

©2002 David Halberstam (P)2017 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 37 hrs and 4 mins
Available on Audible
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Undefeated

Summary

When superstar athlete Jim Thorpe and football legend Pop Warner met in 1904 at the Carlisle Indian Industrial School in Pennsylvania, they forged one of the winningest teams in American football history. Called "the team that invented football", they took on the best opponents of their day, defeating much more privileged schools such as Harvard and Army in a series of breathtakingly close calls, genius plays, and bone-crushing hard work.  But this is not just an underdog story. It's an unflinching look at the persecution of Native Americans and its intersection with the beginning of one of the most beloved - and exploitative - pastimes in America, expertly told by nonfiction powerhouse Steve Sheinkin. 

©2017 Steve Sheinkin (P)2017 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 6 hrs and 31 mins
Available on Audible
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Who Was Genghis Khan?

Summary

Named Temujin at birth by his nomadic family in early Mongolia, the great Genghis Khan used his skill and cunning to create the Mongol Empire and conquer almost the entire continent of Asia.  As ruler of the largest empire in human history, he was as respected as he was feared. Learn more about the man and the legend in Who Was Genghis Khan?

©2014 Nico Medina and Who HQ (P)2018 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 1 hr and 3 mins
Available on Audible
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The Great Leader and the Fighter Pilot

Summary

From the best-selling author of Escape from Camp 14, the murderous rise of North Korea's founding dictator and the fighter pilot who faked him out In The Great Leader and the Fighter Pilot, New York Times best-selling author Blaine Harden tells the riveting story of how Kim Il Sung grabbed power and plunged his country into war against the United States while the youngest fighter pilot in his air force was playing a high-risk game of deception - and escape. As Kim ascended from Soviet puppet to godlike ruler, No Kum Sok noisily pretended to love his Great Leader. That was until he swiped a Soviet MiG-15 and delivered it to the Americans, not knowing they were offering a $100,000 bounty for the warplane (the equivalent of nearly $1 million today). The theft - just weeks after the Korean War ended in July 1953 - electrified the world and incited Kim's bloody vengeance. During the Korean War, the United States brutally carpet bombed the North, killing hundreds of thousands of civilians and giving the Kim dynasty, as Harden reveals, the fact-based narrative it would use to this day to sell paranoia and hatred of Americans. Drawing on documents from Chinese and Russian archives about the role of Mao and Stalin in Kim's shadowy rise as well as from never-before-released US intelligence and interrogation files, Harden gives us a heart-pounding escape adventure and an entirely new way to understand the world's longest-lasting totalitarian state.

©2015 Blaine Harden (P)2015 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Category: History, Military
Length: 9 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
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A Land More Kind Than Home

3 ratings

Summary

A stunning debut reminiscent of the beloved novels of John Hart and Tom Franklin, A Land More Kind Than Home is a mesmerizing literary thriller about the bond between two brothers and the evil they face in a small western North Carolina town.... For a curious boy like Jess Hall, growing up in Marshall means trouble when your mother catches you spying on grown-ups. Adventurous and precocious, Jess is enormously protective of his older brother, Christopher, a mute whom everyone calls Stump. Though their mother has warned them not to snoop, Stump can't help sneaking a look at something he's not supposed to - an act that will have catastrophic repercussions, shattering both his world and Jess's. It's a wrenching event that thrusts Jess into an adulthood for which he's not prepared. While there is much about the world that still confuses him, he now knows that a new understanding can bring not only a growing danger and evil - but also the possibility of freedom and deliverance as well. Told by three resonant and evocative characters - Jess; Adelaide Lyle, the town midwife and moral conscience; and Clem Barefield, a sheriff with his own painful past - A Land More Kind Than Home is a haunting tale of courage in the face of cruelty and the power of love to overcome the darkness that lives in us all. These are masterful portrayals, written with assurance and truth, and they show us the extraordinary promise of this remarkable first novel.

©2012 Wiley Cash (P)2012 HarperCollinsPublishers

Author: Wiley Cash
Length: 8 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
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Tecumseh and the Prophet

Summary

The first biography of the great Shawnee leader in more than 20 years, and the first to make clear that his misunderstood younger brother, Tenskwatawa, was an equal partner in the last great pan-Indian alliance against the United States. Until the Americans killed Tecumseh in 1813, he and his brother Tenskwatawa were the co-architects of the broadest pan-Indian confederation in United States history. In previous accounts of Tecumseh's life, Tenskwatawa has been dismissed as a talentless charlatan and a drunk. But award-winning historian Peter Cozzens now shows us that while Tecumseh was a brilliant diplomat and war leader - admired by the same white Americans he opposed - it was Tenskwatawa, called the "Shawnee Prophet", who created a vital doctrine of religious and cultural revitalization that unified the disparate tribes of the Old Northwest. Detailed research of Native American society and customs provides a window into a world often erased from history books and reveals how both men came to power in different but no less important ways. Cozzens brings us to the forefront of the chaos and violence that characterized the young American Republic, when settlers spilled across the Appalachians to bloody effect in their haste to exploit lands won from the British in the War of Independence, disregarding their rightful Indian owners. Tecumseh and the Prophet presents the untold story of the Shawnee brothers who retaliated against this threat - the two most significant siblings in Native American history, who, Cozzens helps us understand, should be writ large in the annals of America.

©2020 Peter Cozzens (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Category: History, Americas
Length: 19 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
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American Wolf

47 ratings

Summary

A New York Times best-seller. The enthralling true story of the rise and reign of O-Six, the celebrated Yellowstone wolf, and the people who loved or feared her.  Before men ruled the earth, there were wolves. Once abundant in North America, these majestic creatures were hunted to near extinction in the lower 48 states by the 1920s. But in recent decades, conservationists have brought wolves back to the Rockies, igniting a battle over the very soul of the West.  With novelistic detail, Nate Blakeslee tells the gripping story of one of these wolves, O-Six, a charismatic alpha female named for the year of her birth. Uncommonly powerful, with gray fur and faint black ovals around each eye, O-Six is a kind and merciful leader, a fiercely intelligent fighter, and a doting mother. She is beloved by wolf watchers, particularly renowned naturalist Rick McIntyre, and becomes something of a social media star, with followers around the world.  But as she raises her pups and protects her pack, O-Six is challenged on all fronts: by hunters, who compete with wolves for the elk they both prize; by cattle ranchers who are losing livestock and have the ears of politicians; and by other Yellowstone wolves who are vying for control of the park's stunningly beautiful Lamar Valley.  These forces collide in American Wolf, a riveting multigenerational saga of hardship and triumph that tells a larger story about the ongoing cultural clash in the West - between those fighting for a vanishing way of life and those committed to restoring one of the country's most iconic landscapes. 

©2017 Nate Blakeslee (P)2017 Random House Audio

Length: 9 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
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Reincarnation Blues

12 ratings

Summary

A wildly imaginative novel about a man who is reincarnated over 10,000 lifetimes to be with his one true love: Death herself. First we live. Then we die. And then...we get another try? Ten thousand tries, to be exact. Ten thousand lives to "get it right". Answer all the big questions. Achieve wisdom. And become one with everything. Milo has had 9,995 chances so far and has just five more lives to earn a place in the cosmic soul. If he doesn't make the cut, oblivion awaits. But all Milo really wants is to fall forever into the arms of Death. Or Suzie, as he calls her. More than just Milo's lover throughout his countless layovers in the Afterlife, Suzie is literally his reason for living - as he dives into one new existence after another, praying for the day he'll never have to leave her side again. But Reincarnation Blues is more than a great love story: Every journey from cradle to grave offers Milo more pieces of the great cosmic puzzle - if only he can piece them together in time to finally understand what it means to be part of something bigger than infinity. As darkly enchanting as the works of Neil Gaiman and as wisely hilarious as Kurt Vonnegut's, Michael Poore's Reincarnation Blues is the story of everything that makes life profound, beautiful, absurd, and heartbreaking. Because it's more than Milo and Suzie's story. It's your story, too.

©2017 Michael Poore (P)2017 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 13 hrs and 3 mins
Available on Audible
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Under a Flaming Sky

1 rating

Summary

On September 1, 1894, two forest fires converged on the town of Hinckley, Minnesota, trapping over 2,000 people. Daniel J. Brown recounts the events surrounding the fire in the first and only book to chronicle the dramatic story that unfolded. On September 1, 1894, two forest fires converged on the town of Hinckley, Minnesota, trapping over 2,000 people. Daniel J. Brown recounts the events surrounding the fire in the first and only book to chronicle the dramatic story that unfolded. Whereas Oregon's famous "Biscuit" fire in 2002 burned 350,000 acres in one week, the Hinckley fire did the same damage in five hours. The fire created its own weather, including hurricane-strength winds, bubbles of plasmalike glowing gas, and 200-foot-tall flames. In some instances "fire whirls", or tornadoes of fire, danced out from the main body of the fire to knock down buildings and carry flaming debris into the sky. Temperatures reached 1,600 degrees Fahrenheit - the melting point of steel. As the fire surrounded the town, two railroads became the only means of escape. Two trains ran the gauntlet of fire. One train caught on fire from one end to the other. The heroic young African American porter ran up and down the length of the train, reassuring the passengers even as the flames tore at their clothes. On the other train, the engineer refused to back his locomotive out of town until the last possible minute of escape. In all, more than 400 people died, leading to a revolution in forestry management practices and federal agencies that monitor and fight wildfires today. Author Daniel Brown has woven together numerous survivors' stories, historical sources, and interviews with forest fire experts in a gripping narrative that tells the fascinating story of one of North America's most devastating fires and how it changed the nation.

©2016 Daniel Brown (P)2016 Penguin Audio

Category: History, Americas
Length: 8 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
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The End of October

26 ratings

Summary

"An eerily prescient novel about a devastating virus that begins in Asia before going global.... A page-turner that has the earmarks of an instant best seller." (New York Post)   "Featuring accounts of past plagues and pandemics, descriptions of pathogens and how they work, and dark notes about global warming, the book produces deep shudders.... A disturbing, eerily timed novel." (Kirkus Reviews) "A compelling read up to the last sentence. Wright has come up with a story worthy of Michael Crichton. In an eerily calm, matter-of-fact way, and backed by meticulous research, he imagines what the world would actually be like in the grip of a devastating new virus." (Richard Preston, author of The Hot Zone) "This timely literary page-turner shows Wright is on a par with the best writers in the genre." (Publishers Weekly, starred review)  In this riveting medical thriller - from the Pulitzer Prize winner and best-selling author - Dr. Henry Parsons, an unlikely but appealing hero, races to find the origins and cure of a mysterious new killer virus as it brings the world to its knees. At an internment camp in Indonesia, 47 people are pronounced dead with acute hemorrhagic fever. When Henry Parsons - microbiologist, epidemiologist - travels there on behalf of the World Health Organization to investigate, what he finds will soon have staggering repercussions across the globe: An infected man is on his way to join the millions of worshipers in the annual Hajj to Mecca. Now, Henry joins forces with a Saudi prince and doctor in an attempt to quarantine the entire host of pilgrims in the holy city....  A Russian émigré, a woman who has risen to deputy director of US Homeland Security, scrambles to mount a response to what may be an act of biowarfare.... Already-fraying global relations begin to snap, one by one, in the face of a pandemic.... Henry's wife, Jill, and their children face diminishing odds of survival in Atlanta.... And the disease slashes across the United States, dismantling institutions - scientific, religious, governmental - and decimating the population. As packed with suspense as it is with the fascinating history of viral diseases, Lawrence Wright has given us a full-tilt, electrifying, one-of-a-kind thriller.

©2020 Lawrence Wright (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 13 hrs and 26 mins
Available on Audible
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Black Sun

1 rating

Summary

"Black Sun is fascinating and has fearsome authenticity." (Frederick Forsyth, number one New York Times best-selling author) "Thrilling and suspenseful." (Simon Sebeag Montefiore, New York Times best-selling author of The Romanovs) For fans of Red Sparrow and Child 44 comes a chilling and cinematic thriller set in 1961 in one of the most secretive locations in Soviet history. Ten days before the test of largest nuclear device in history, a KGB officer must investigate the murder of one of the architects of the bomb, and unravel a conspiracy that could set the world on fire. It is the dawn of the 1960s. In order to investigate the gruesome death of a brilliant young physicist, KGB officer Major Alexander Vasin must leave Moscow for Arzamas-16, a top-secret research city that does not appear on any map. There he comes up against the brightest, most cutthroat brain trust in Russia who, on the orders of Nikita Khrushchev himself, are building a nuclear weapon with 3,800 times the destructive potential of the Hiroshima bomb. RDS-220 is a project of such vital national importance that, unlike everyone else in the Soviet Union, the scientists of Arzamas-16 are free to think and act, live and love as they wish...as long as they complete the project and prove to their capitalist enemies that the USSR now commands the heights of nuclear supremacy.  With intricately plotted machinations, secrets and surveillance, corrupt politicos and puppet masters in the Politburo, and one devastating weapon, Owen Matthews has crafted a timely, terrific, and fast-paced thriller set at the height - and in the heart - of Soviet power.

©2019 Owen Matthews (P)2019 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 12 hrs and 54 mins
Available on Audible
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Founding Martyr

Summary

A rich and illuminating biography of America’s forgotten Founding Father, the patriot physician and major general who fomented rebellion and died heroically at the battle of Bunker Hill on the brink of revolution. Little has been known of one of the most important figures in early American history, Dr. Joseph Warren, an architect of the colonial rebellion, and a man who might have led the country as Washington or Jefferson did had he not been martyred at Bunker Hill in 1775. Warren was involved in almost every major insurrectionary act in the Boston area for a decade, from the Stamp Act protests to the Boston Massacre to the Boston Tea Party, and his incendiary writings included the famous Suffolk Resolves, which helped unite the colonies against Britain and inspired the Declaration of Independence. Yet after his death, his life and legend faded, leaving his contemporaries to rise to fame in his place and obscuring his essential role in bringing America to independence. Christian Di Spigna’s definitive new biography of Warren is a loving work of historical excavation, the product of two decades of research and scores of newly unearthed primary-source documents that have given us this forgotten Founding Father anew. Following Warren from his farming childhood and years at Harvard through his professional success and political radicalization to his role in sparking the rebellion, Di Spigna’s thoughtful, judicious retelling not only restores Warren to his rightful place in the pantheon of Revolutionary greats, it deepens our understanding of the nation’s dramatic beginnings.

©2018 Christian Di Spigna (P)2018 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 8 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
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A Piglet Named Mercy

Summary

Every porcine wonder was once a piglet! Celebrate the joy of a new arrival with this endearing audiobook prequel to the New York Times best-selling Mercy Watson series. Mr. Watson and Mrs. Watson live ordinary lives. Sometimes, their lives feel a bit too ordinary. Sometimes, they wish something different would happen. And one day, it does, when someone unpredictable finds her way to their front door.  In a delightful origin story for the star of the Mercy Watson series, a tiny piglet brings love (and chaos) to Deckawoo Drive - and the Watsons' lives will never be the same.

©2019 Kate DiCamillo (P)2019 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 6 mins
Available on Audible
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The Back Channel

4 ratings

Summary

“A masterful diplomatic memoir” (The Washington Post) from Joe Biden’s nominee for CIA director, a career ambassador who served five presidents and 10 secretaries of state — an impassioned argument for the enduring value of diplomacy in an increasingly volatile world.  Over the course of more than three decades as an American diplomat, William J. Burns played a central role in the most consequential diplomatic episodes of his time - from the bloodless end of the Cold War to the collapse of post-Cold War relations with Putin’s Russia, from post-9/11 tumult in the Middle East to the secret nuclear talks with Iran. In The Back Channel, Burns recounts, with novelistic detail and incisive analysis, some of the seminal moments of his career. Drawing on a trove of newly declassified cables and memos, he gives readers a rare inside look at American diplomacy in action. His dispatches from war-torn Chechnya and Qaddafi’s bizarre camp in the Libyan desert and his warnings of the “Perfect Storm” that would be unleashed by the Iraq War will reshape our understanding of history - and inform the policy debates of the future. Burns sketches the contours of effective American leadership in a world that resembles neither the zero-sum Cold War contest of his early years as a diplomat nor the “unipolar moment” of American primacy that followed. Ultimately, The Back Channel is an eloquent, deeply informed, and timely story of a life spent in service of American interests abroad. It is also a powerful reminder, in a time of great turmoil, of the enduring importance of diplomacy. Advance praise for The Back Channel: “Bill Burns is simply one of the finest U.S. diplomats of the last half century. The Back Channel demonstrates his rare and precious combination of strategic insight and policy action. It is full of riveting historical detail but also, more important, shrewd insights into how we can advance our interests and values in a world where U.S. leadership remains the linchpin of international order.” (James A. Baker III) “From one of America’s consummate diplomats, The Back Channel is an incisive and sorely needed case for the revitalization of diplomacy - what Burns wisely describes as our ‘tool of first resort.’” (Henry Kissinger) “Burns not only offers a vivid account of how American diplomacy works, he also puts forward a compelling vision for its future that will surely inspire new generations to follow his incredible example.” (Madeleine K. Albright)

©2019 William J. Burns (P)2019 Random House Audio

Length: 17 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
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Thirteen Days in September

1 rating

Summary

A gripping day-by-day account of the 1978 Camp David conference, when President Jimmy Carter persuaded Israeli prime minister Menachem Begin and Egyptian president Anwar Sadat to sign the first peace treaty in the modern Middle East, one which endures to this day. With his hallmark insight into the forces at play in the Middle East and his acclaimed journalistic skill, Lawrence Wright takes us through each of the 13 days of the Camp David conference, illuminating the issues that have made the problems of the region so intractable, as well as exploring the scriptural narratives that continue to frame the conflict. In addition to his in-depth accounts of the lives of the three leaders, Wright draws vivid portraits of other fiery personalities who were present at Camp David - including Moshe Dayan, Osama el-Baz, and Zbigniew Brzezinski - as they work furiously behind the scenes. Wright also explores the significant role played by Rosalynn Carter. What emerges is a riveting view of the making of this unexpected and so far unprecedented peace. Wright exhibits the full extent of Carter's persistence in pushing an agreement forward, the extraordinary way in which the participants at the conference - many of them lifelong enemies - attained it, and the profound difficulties inherent in the process and its outcome, not the least of which has been the still unsettled struggle between the Israelis and the Palestinians. In Thirteen Days in September, Wright gives us a resonant work of history and reportage that provides both a timely revisiting of this important diplomatic triumph and an inside look at how peace is made.

©2014 Lawrence Wright (P)2014 Random House Audio

Length: 11 hrs and 55 mins
Available on Audible
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The Notorious Benedict Arnold

Summary

On a bitter cold day in January 1741, Benedict Arnold was born. Little did anyone know that he would grow up to become the most infamous villain in American history. But first, he would be one of the country's greatest war heroes. Fearless in the line of fire, a genius at strategy and motivating his men, General Arnold was America's first action hero. But his thirst for recognition would ultimately be his undoing. Hopeless at political maneuvers, prone to outbursts of ego and temper, Arnold saw his fame slowly slipping away. And so, he came up with a plan that would guarantee his place in history.... Packed with gripping first-person accounts, astonishing battle scenes, and shocking betrayals, this accessible biography proves that there's more than one side to every good story.

©2010 Steve Sheinkin (P)2012 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 6 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
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World Without Cancer

5 ratings

Summary

Mr. Griffin marshals the evidence that cancer is a deficiency disease like scurvy or pellagra aggravated by the lack of an essential food compound in modem man's diet. That substance is vitamin B17. In its purified form developed for cancer therapy, it is known as Laetrile. Why has orthodox medicine waged war against this non-drug approach? The author contends that the answer is to be found, not in science, but in politics, and is based upon the hidden economic and power agenda of those who dominate the medical establishment.

©2011 G. Edward Griffin (P)2013 Novel Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 13 hrs and 19 mins
Available on Audible
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The English Major

2 ratings

Summary

"It used to be Cliff and Vivian and now it isn't." With these words, Jim Harrison begins a riotous, moving novel that sends a 60-something man on a quest of self-rediscovery. Newly divorced and robbed of his farm by his real-estate shark of an ex-wife, Cliff is off on a road trip across America, on a mission to rename all the states and state birds and redeem them from the banal names men have given them. Cliff's adventures take him through a whirlwind affair with a former student from his high-school teaching days 20-some years before, to a snake farm in Arizona owned by an old classmate, and into the high-octane existence of his son, a big-time movie producer. A map of a man's journey into - and out of - himself, The English Major is vintage Harrison: reflective, big-picture American, and replete with wicked wit.

©2008 Jim Harrison (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jim Harrison
Length: 7 hrs and 8 mins
Available on Audible
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Don't Know Much About the American Presidents

Summary

For more than 20 years since his New York Times best seller Don't Know Much About History first appeared, Davis has shown that Americans don't hate history, just the dull version dished out in school.  Now Davis turns his attention to what is arguably the most important and most fascinating subject in American history: our presidents. From the heated debates over executive powers through the curious election of George Washington in 1789 and, for more than 200 years, up through the meteoric rise of Barack Obama, the presidency has been at the heart of American history. From the low lights to the bright lights, from the intellectuals to the disasters, from the memorable to the forgettable and forgotten, Davis tells all the stories. He uses his entertaining question-and-answer style to chart the history of the presidency itself as well as debunk the myths of America's leaders and recount the real stories of these very real people.  For history buffs and history-phobes alike, this entertaining audiobook is packed with memorable facts that will change your understanding of the highest office in the land and the men who have occupied it.  PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2012 Kenneth C. Davis (P)2012 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Legends of the Fall

3 ratings

Summary

From one of America's most versatile and celebrated writers, Legends of the Fall is Jim Harrison's classic trilogy of epic novellas. The publication of this magnificent trilogy of short novels - Legends of the Fall, Revenge, and The Man Who Gave Up His Name - confirmed Jim Harrison's reputation as one of the finest American writers of his generation. These absorbing novellas explore the theme of revenge and the actions to which people resort when their lives or goals are threatened, adding up to an extraordinary vision of the twentieth-century man. Set in the Rocky Mountains, Legends of the Fall is the epic tale of three brothers and their lives of passion, madness, exploration, and danger at the beginning of World War I. In Revenge, love causes the course of a man's life to be savagely and irrevocably altered. And in The Man Who Gave Up His Name, a man named Nordstrom is unable to relinquish his consuming obsessions with women, dancing, and food.

©1980 Jim Harrison (P)2013 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jim Harrison
Length: 8 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
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Skeletons at the Feast

Summary

Perhaps not since

The English Patient has a novel so deftly captured both the power and poignancy of romance and terror and tragedy of war. Skillfully portraying the flesh and blood of history, Chris Bohjalian has crafted a rich tapestry that puts a face on one of the 20th century's greatest tragedies - while creating, perhaps, a haunting masterpiece.

In January 1945, in the waning months of World War II, a small group of people begin the longest journey of their lives: an attempt to cross the remnants of the Third Reich, from Warsaw to the Rhine if necessary, to reach the British and American lines.

Among the group is 18-year-old Anna Emmerich, the daughter of Prussian aristocrats. There is her lover, Callum Finella, a 21-year-old Scottish prisoner of war who was brought from the stalag to her family's farm as forced labour. And there is 26-year-old Wehrmacht corporal, who the pair know as Manfred - who is, in reality, Uri Singer, a Jew from Germany who managed to escape a train bound for Auschwitz. As they work their way west, they encounter a countryside ravaged by war. Their flight will test both Anna's and Callum's love, as well as their friendship with Manfred - assuming any of them survive.

©2008 Chris Bohjalian (P)2008 Bolinda Publishing

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 12 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
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The Hidden History of America at War

Summary

Multi-million-copy best-selling historian Kenneth C. Davis sets his sights on war stories in The Hidden History of America at War. In prose that will remind you of "the best teacher you ever had" (People Magazine), Davis brings to life six emblematic battles, revealing untold tales that span our nation's history, from the Revolutionary War to Iraq. Along the way, he illuminates why we go to war, who fights, the grunt's-eye view of combat, and how these conflicts reshaped our military and national identity. From the Battle of Yorktown (1781), where a fledgling America learned hard lessons about what kind of military it would need to survive, to Fallujah (2004), which epitomized the dawn of the privatization of war, The Hidden History of America at War takes listeners inside the battlefield, introducing them to key characters and events that will shatter myths, misconceptions, and romanticism, replacing them with rich insight.

©2015 Kenneth C. Davis (P)2015 Random House Audio

Category: History, Military
Length: 12 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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Secrets of Eden

Summary

From the best-selling author of The Double Bind, Midwives, and Skeletons at the Feast comes a novel of shattered faith, intimate secrets, and the delicate nature of sacrifice. "There," says Alice Hayward to Reverend Stephen Drew, just after her baptism, and just before going home to the husband who will kill her that evening and then shoot himself. Drew, tortured by the cryptic finality of that short utterance, feels his faith in God slipping away and is saved from despair only by a meeting with Heather Laurent, the author of wildly successful, inspirational books about ...angels. Heather survived a childhood that culminated in her own parents' murder-suicide, so she identifies deeply with Alice's daughter, Katie, offering herself as a mentor to the girl and a shoulder for Stephen - who flees the pulpit to be with Heather and see if there is anything to be salvaged from the spiritual wreckage around him. But then the State's Attorney begins to suspect that Alice's husband may not have killed himself...and finds out that Alice had secrets only her minister knew. Secrets of Eden is both a haunting literary thriller and a deeply evocative testament to the inner complexities that mark all of our lives. Once again Chris Bohjalian has given us a riveting novel in which nothing is precisely what it seems. As one character remarks, "Believe no one. Trust no one. Assume all of our stories are suspect."

©2010 Chris Bohjalian; 2010 Random House Audio

Length: 11 hrs and 17 mins
Available on Audible
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The Secret in Their Eyes

Summary

Benjamín Chaparro is a retired detective still obsessed by the brutal, decades-old rape and murder of a young married woman in her own bedroom. While attempting to write a book about the case, he revisits the details of the investigation. As he reaches into the past, Chaparro also recalls the beginning of his long, unrequited love for Irene Hornos, then just an intern, now a respected judge. Set in the Buenos Aires of the 1970s, Sacheri’s tale reveals the underpinnings of Argentina’s Dirty War and takes on the question of justice - what it really means and in whose hands it belongs. Eduardo Sacheri's first collection of short stories was published in Spain in 2000 under the title Los traidores y otros cuentos. Three other collections were published between 2001 and 2007, all of which have been bestsellers in Argentina. The film adaptation of his novel La pregunta de sus ojos won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Film in 2010.

©2005 Eduardo Sacheri; Translation 2011 by John Cullen (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 9 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
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Gambling with Armageddon

1 rating

Summary

From the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer comes the first effort to set the Cuban Missile Crisis, with its potential for nuclear holocaust, in a wider historical narrative of the Cold War - how such a crisis arose and why at the very last possible moment it didn't happen. In this groundbreaking look at the Cuban Missile Crisis, Martin Sherwin not only gives us a riveting, sometimes hour-by-hour explanation of the crisis itself, but also explores the origins, scope, and consequences of the evolving place of nuclear weapons in the post-World War II world. Mining new sources and materials and going far beyond the scope of earlier works on this critical face-off between the United States and the Soviet Union - triggered when Khrushchev began installing missiles in Cuba at Castro's behest - Sherwin shows how this volatile event was an integral part of the wider Cold War and was a consequence of nuclear arms.  Gambling with Armageddon looks in particular at the original debate in the Truman administration about using the atomic bomb; the way in which President Eisenhower relied on the threat of massive retaliation to project US power in the early Cold War era; and how President Kennedy, though unprepared to deal with the Bay of Pigs debacle, came of age during the Cuban Missile Crisis. Here, too, is a clarifying picture of what was going on in Khrushchev's Soviet Union.  Martin Sherwin has spent his career in the study of nuclear weapons and how they have shaped our world. Gambling with Armegeddon is an outstanding capstone to his work thus far.

©2020 Martin J. Sherwin (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Category: History, Military
Length: 18 hrs and 50 mins
Available on Audible
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George Marshall

5 ratings

Summary

The extraordinary career of George Catlett Marshall - America’s most distinguished soldier - statesman since George Washington - whose selfless leadership and moral character influenced the course of two world wars and helped define the American century. "I’ve read several biographies of Marshall, but I think [David] Roll’s may be the best of the bunch." (Thomas E. Ricks, New York Times Book Review) • "Powerful." (The Wall Street Journal) • "Enthralling." (Andrew Roberts) • "Important." (William I. Hitchcock) • "Majestic." (Susan Page) • "Engrossing." (Andrew J. Bacevich) • "Judicious." (Walter Isaacson) • "Definitive." (Kirkus) Winston Churchill called him World War II's "organizer of victory." Harry Truman said he was "the greatest military man that this country ever produced." Today, in our era of failed leadership, few lives are more worthy of renewed examination than Marshall and his 50 years of loyal service to the defense of his nation and its values. Even as a young officer, he was heralded as a genius, a reputation that grew when in WWI he planned and executed a nighttime movement of more than a half million troops from one battlefield to another that led to the armistice. Between the wars he helped modernize combat training, and re-staffed the US Army's officer corps with the men who would lead in the next decades. But as WWII loomed, it was the role of army chief of staff in which Marshall's intellect and backbone were put to the test, when his blind commitment to duty would run up against the realities of Washington politics. Long seen as a stoic, almost statuesque figure, he emerges here as a man both remarkable and deeply human, thanks to newly discovered sources. Set against the backdrop of five major conflicts - two world wars, Palestine, Korea, and the Cold War - Marshall's education in military, diplomatic, and political power, replete with their nuances and ambiguities, runs parallel with America's emergence as a global superpower. The result is a defining account of one of our most consequential leaders.

©2019 David L. Roll (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 27 hrs and 42 mins
Available on Audible
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To Wake the Giant

3 ratings

Summary

The New York Times best-selling master of military historical fiction tells the story of Pearl Harbor as only he can in the first novel of a gripping new series set in World War II's Pacific theater. In 1941, President Franklin D. Roosevelt watches uneasily as the world heads rapidly down a dangerous path. The Japanese have waged an aggressive campaign against China, and they now begin to expand their ambitions to other parts of Asia. As their expansion efforts grow bolder, their enemies know that Japan's ultimate goal is total conquest over the region, especially when the Japanese align themselves with Hitler's Germany and Mussolini's Italy, who wage their own war of conquest across Europe. Meanwhile, the British stand nearly alone against Hitler, and there is pressure in Washington to transfer America’s powerful fleet of warships from Hawaii to the Atlantic to join the fight against German U-boats that are devastating shipping. But despite deep concerns about weakening the Pacific fleet, no one believes that the main base at Pearl Harbor is under any real threat. Told through the eyes of widely diverse characters, this story looks at all sides of the drama and puts the listener squarely in the middle. In Washington, Secretary of State Cordell Hull must balance his own concerns between President Roosevelt and the Japanese ambassador, Kichisaburo Nomura, who is little more than a puppet of his own government. In Japan, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto wins skeptical approval for his outrageous plans in the Pacific, yet he understands more than anyone that an attack on Pearl Harbor will start a war that Japan cannot win. In Hawaii, Commander Joseph Rochefort's job as an accomplished intelligence officer is to decode radio signals and detect the location of the Japanese fleet, but when the airwaves suddenly go silent, no one has any idea why. And from a small Depression-ravaged town, 19-year-old Tommy Biggs sees the Navy as his chance to escape and happily accepts his assignment, every sailor’s dream: the battleship USS Arizona. With you-are-there immediacy, Shaara opens up the mysteries of just how Japan - a small, deeply militarist nation - could launch one of history’s most devastating surprise attacks. In this story of innocence, heroism, sacrifice, and unfathomable blindness, Shaara's gift for storytelling uses these familiar wartime themes to shine a light on the personal, the painful, the tragic, and the thrilling - and on a crucial part of history we must never forget.

©2020 Jeff Shaara (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jeff Shaara
Length: 19 hrs and 1 min
Available on Audible
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Winter Kill

Summary

The winter around Cheyenne, Wyoming, is devastating, killing both people and livestock. John Henry Cole lives three miles out of town on his small ranch, where he waits out the storm that is quickly killing his cattle and horses. Everything he owns is dying before his eyes, and there isn't anything he can do about it. His dreams of a settled life are as dead as everything else. He knows it's time to move on, and move on he does - but not in the direction he expected. Teddy Green, a Texas Ranger, arrives in Cheyenne and seeks Cole's help in locating Ella Mims, a woman who once lived in Cheyenne and with whom Cole had once been intimate. Green wants to question Mims concerning her involvement in a Denver City murder...but he's not the only one searching for her.

©2016 Bill Brooks (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Bill Brooks
Length: 7 hrs and 40 mins
Available on Audible
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Navigating Early

2 ratings

Summary

At the end of World War II, Jack Baker, a landlocked Kansas boy, is suddenly uprooted after his mother's death and placed in a boy's boarding school in Maine. There, Jack encounters Early Auden, the strangest of boys, who reads the number pi as a story and collects clippings about the sightings of a great black bear in the nearby mountains. Newcomer Jack feels lost yet can't help being drawn to Early, who won't believe what everyone accepts to be the truth about the Great Appalachian Bear, Timber Rattlesnakes, and the legendary school hero known as The Fish, who never returned from the war. When the boys find themselves unexpectedly alone at school, they embark on a quest on the Appalachian Trail in search of the great black bear. But what they are searching for is sometimes different from what they find. They will meet truly strange characters, each of whom figures into the pi story Early weaves as they travel, while discovering things they never realized about themselves and others in their lives.

©2013 Clare Vanderpool (P)2013 Listening Library

Available on Audible
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Those Across the River

6 ratings

Summary

Failed academic Frank Nichols and his wife, Eudora, have arrived in the sleepy Georgia town of Whitbrow, where Frank hopes to write a history of his family's old estate - the Savoyard Plantation - and the horrors that occurred there. At first, the quaint, rural ways of their new neighbors seem to be everything they wanted. But there is an unspoken dread that the townsfolk have lived with for generations. A presence that demands sacrifice. It comes from the shadowy woods across the river, where the ruins of Savoyard still stand. Where a longstanding debt of blood has never been forgotten. A debt that has been waiting patiently for Frank Nichols's homecoming...

©2011 Christopher Buehlman (P)2011 Penguin

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 9 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
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The Northern Reach

Summary

A heart-wrenching first novel about the power of place and family ties, the weight of the stories we choose to tell, and the burden of those we hide Frozen in grief after the loss of her son at sea, Edith Baines stares across the water at a schooner, under full sail yet motionless in the winter wind and surging tide of the Northern Reach. Edith seems to be hallucinating. Or is she? Edith’s boat-watch opens The Northern Reach, set in the coastal town of Wellbridge, Maine, where townspeople squeeze a living from the perilous bay or scrape by on the largesse of the summer folk and whatever they can cobble together, salvage, or grab. At the center of town life is the Baines family, land-rich, cash-poor descendants of town founders, along with the ne’er-do-well Moody clan, the Martins of Skunk Pond, and the dirt farming, bootlegging Edgecombs. Over the course of the twentieth century, the families intersect, interact, and intermarry, grappling with secrets and prejudices that span generations, opening new wounds and reckoning with old ghosts. W. S. Winslow's The Northern Reach is a breathtaking debut about the complexity of family, the cultural legacy of place, and the people and experiences that shape us. A Macmillan Audio production from Flatiron Books “Is there anything better than getting to walk through a small and unfamiliar town and peer through the windows into the lives lived in the houses there? The Northern Reach gives you that rich and satisfying treat. Here is a Maine as various and stark as the pull of tides in every human heart.” (Sarah Blake, author of The Guest Book)

©2021 W.S. Winslow (P)2021 Macmillan Audio

Author: W.S. Winslow
Length: 7 hrs and 44 mins
Available on Audible
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Vampires in the Lemon Grove

2 ratings

Summary

From the author of the instant New York Times best seller Swamplandia! (a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize), a dazzling new collection of stories that showcases Karen Russell's gifts at their inimitable best. In the collection's marvelous title story, two aging vampires in a sun-drenched Italian lemon grove find their hundred-year marriage tested when one of them develops a fear of flying. In "The Seagull Army Descends on Strong Beach, 1979", a dejected teenager discovers that the universe is communicating with him through talismanic objects left in a seagull's nest. "Proving Up" and "The Graveless Doll of Eric Mutis" - stories of children left to fend for themselves in dire predicaments - find Russell veering into more sinister territory, and ultimately crossing the line into full-scale horror. In "The New Veterans", a massage therapist working with a tattooed war veteran discovers she has the power to heal by manipulating the images on his body. In all, these wondrous new pieces display a young writer of superlative originality and invention coming into the full range and scale of her powers.

©2013 Karen Russell (P)2013 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Please Look After Mom

1 rating

Summary

A million-plus-copy best seller in Korea - a magnificent English-language debut poised to become an international sensation - this is the stunning, deeply moving story of a family’s search for their mother, who goes missing one afternoon amid the crowds of the Seoul Station subway.  Told through the piercing voices and urgent perspectives of a daughter, son, husband, and mother, Please Look After Mom is at once an authentic picture of contemporary life in Korea and a universal story of family love.  You will never think of your mother the same way again after you listen to this book. 

©2011 Kyung-Sook Shin (P)2011 Random House

Available on Audible
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Gods of Howl Mountain

1 rating

Summary

In Gods of Howl Mountain, award-winning author Taylor Brown explores a world of folk healers, whiskey-runners, and dark family secrets in the high country of 1950s North Carolina.  Bootlegger Rory Docherty has returned home to the fabled mountain of his childhood - a misty wilderness that holds its secrets close and keeps the outside world at gunpoint. Slowed by a wooden leg and haunted by memories of the Korean War, Rory runs bootleg whiskey for a powerful mountain clan in a retro-fitted 1940 Ford coupe.  Between deliveries to roadhouses, brothels, and private clients, he lives with his formidable grandmother, evades federal agents, and stokes the wrath of a rival runner. In the mill town at the foot of the mountains - a hotbed of violence, moonshine, and the burgeoning sport of stock-car racing - Rory is bewitched by the mysterious daughter of a snake-handling preacher.  His grandmother, Maybelline "Granny May" Docherty, opposes this match for her own reasons, believing that "some things are best left buried." A folk healer whose powers are rumored to rival those of a wood witch, she concocts potions and cures for the people of the mountains while harboring an explosive secret about Rory's mother - the truth behind her long confinement in a mental hospital, during which time she has not spoken one word. When Rory's life is threatened, Granny must decide whether to reveal what she knows... or protect her only grandson from the past. With gritty and atmospheric prose, Taylor Brown brings to life a perilous mountain and the family who rules it.

©2018 Taylor Brown (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Taylor Brown
Length: 9 hrs
Available on Audible
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The Last Station

Summary

Set in the last tumultuous years of Leo Tolstoy's life, The Last Station centers on the battle for his soul waged by his wife, Sofya Andreyevna, and his leading disciple, Vladimir Cherkov. Torn between his professed doctrine of poverty and chastity and the reality of his enormous wealth, his 13 children, and a life of relative luxury, Tolstoy makes a dramatic flight from his home. Too ill to continue beyond the tiny rail station at Astapovo, he believes that he is dying alone, while over one hundred newspapermen camp outside awaiting hourly reports on his condition. A brilliant re-creation of the mind and tortured soul of one of the world's greatest writers, The Last Station is a richly inventive novel that dances between fact and fiction.

©2007 Jay Parini (P)2008 Random House

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Gods and Generals

2 ratings

Summary

The New York Times best-selling prequel to the Pulitzer Prize-winning classic The Killer Angels.    In this brilliantly written epic novel, Jeff Shaara traces the lives, passions, and careers of the great military leaders from the first gathering clouds of the Civil War. Here is Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson, a hopelessly by-the-book military instructor and devout Christian who becomes the greatest commander of the Civil War; Winfield Scott Hancock, a captain of quartermasters who quickly establishes himself as one of the finest leaders of the Union army; Joshua Chamberlain, who gives up his promising academic career and goes on to become one of the most heroic soldiers in American history; and Robert E. Lee, never believing until too late that a civil war would ever truly come to pass. Profound in its insights into the minds and hearts of those who fought in the war, Gods and Generals creates a vivid portrait of the soldiers, the battlefields, and the tumultuous times that forever shaped the nation. 

©2000 Jeff Shaara (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jeff Shaara
Length: 22 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
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Dreamsongs (Unabridged Selections)

4 ratings

Summary

BONUS: Each selection includes extensive commentary by author George R. R. Martin Dubbed “the American Tolkien” by Time magazine, number-one New York Times best-selling author George R. R. Martin is a giant in the field of fantasy literature and one of the most exciting storytellers of our time. Now he delivers a rare treat for readers: a compendium of his shorter works, collected into two stunning volumes, that offers fascinating insight into his journey from young writer to award-winning master. Audio Table of Contents: Dreamsongs: Introduction by Gardner Dozois, read by Scott Brick Section 1: A Four-Color Fanboy  A Four-Color Fanboy Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “Only Kids Are Afraid of the Dark,” read by Adrian Paul “The Fortress,” read by Mark Bramhall “And Death His Legacy,” read by Scott Brick  Section 2: The Filthy Pro The Filthy Pro Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “The Hero,” read by Roy Dotrice “The Exit to San Breta,” read by Scott Brick “The Second Kind of Loneliness,” read by Mark Bramhall “With Morning Comes Mistfall,” read by Claudia Black  Section 3: The Light of Distant Stars The Light of Distant Stars Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “A Song for Lya,” read by Mark Bramhall “This Tower of Ashes,” read by Kirby Heyborne “And Seven Times Never Kill Man,” read by Roy Dotrice “This Stone City,” read by Adrian Paul “Bitterblooms,” read by Kim Mai Guest “The Way of Cross and Dragon,” read by Roy Dotrice Section 4: The Heirs of Turtle Castle The Heirs of Turtle Castle Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “The Lonely Songs of Laren Dorr,” read by Kim Mai Guest “The Ice Dragon,” read by Emily Janice Card “In the Lost Lands,” read by Claudia Black Section 5: Hybrids and Horrors Hybrids and Horrors Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “Meathouse Man,” read by Kirby Heyborne “Remembering Melody,” read by Scott Brick “Sandkings,” read by Mark Bramhall “Nightflyers,” read by Adenrele Ojo “The Monkey Treatment,” read by Kirby Heyborne “The Pear-Shaped Man,” read by Roy Dotrice  Section 6: A Taste of Tuf A Taste of Tuf Author Introduction, read by George R. R. Martin “A Beast for Norn,” read by Roy Dotrice “Guardians,” read by Roy Dotrice

©2003 George R. R. Martin (P)2007 Random House, Inc. Random House Audio, a division of Random House, Inc.

Available on Audible
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Secret Ingredients

Summary

Since its earliest days, The New Yorker has been a tastemaker - literally. As the home of A. J. Liebling, Joseph Wechsberg, and M. F. K. Fisher, who practically invented American food writing, the magazine established a tradition that is carried forward today by irrepressible literary gastronomes including Calvin Trillin, Bill Buford, Adam Gopnik, Jane Kramer, and Anthony Bourdain. Now, in this indispensable collection, The New Yorker dishes up a feast of delicious writing on food and drink, from every age of its fabled 80-year history. There are memoirs, short stories, tell-alls, and poems - ranging in tone from sweet to sour and in subject from soup to nuts.  M. F. K. Fisher pays homage to “cookery witches,” those mysterious cooks who possess “an uncanny power over food,” while John McPhee valiantly trails an inveterate forager and is rewarded with stewed persimmons and white-pine-needle tea. There is Roald Dahl’s famous story “Taste,” in which a wine snob’s palate comes in for some unwelcome scrutiny, and Julian Barnes’s ingenious tale of a lifelong gourmand who goes on a very peculiar diet for still more peculiar reasons. Adam Gopnik asks if French cuisine is done for, and Calvin Trillin investigates whether people can actually taste the difference between red wine and white. We journey with Susan Orlean as she distills the essence of Cuba in the story of a single restaurant, and with Judith Thurman as she investigates the arcane practices of Japan’s tofu masters. Closer to home, Joseph Mitchell celebrates the old New York tradition of the beefsteak dinner, and Mark Singer shadows the city’s foremost fisherman-chef.  Selected from the magazine’s plentiful larder, Secret Ingredients celebrates all forms of gustatory delight. 

©2007 David Remnick (P)2007 Books on Tape

Available on Audible
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No Room for Small Dreams

8 ratings

Summary

In 1934, 11-year-old Shimon Peres emigrated to the land of Israel from his native Poland, leaving behind an extended family who would later be murdered in the Holocaust. Few back then would have predicted that this young man would eventually become one of the towering figures of the 20th century. Peres would indeed go on to serve the new nation as prime minister, president, foreign minister, and the head of several other ministries. He was central to the establishment of the Israeli Defense Forces and the defense industry that would provide the young nation with a robust deterrent power. He was crucial to launching Israel's nuclear energy program and to the creation of its high-tech "Start Up Nation" revolution. His refusal to surrender to conventional wisdom and political conventions helped save the Israeli economy and prompted some of the most daring military operations in history, among them the legendary Operation Entebbe. And yet, as important as his role in creating and deploying Israel's armed forces was, his stunning transition from hawk to dove - with its accompanying unwavering commitment to peace - made him one of the globe's most recognized, honored, and admired statesmen. In this, his final work, finished only weeks before his passing, Peres offers a long-awaited examination of the crucial turning points in Israeli history through the prism of having been a decision maker and eyewitness. Told with the frankness of someone aware this would likely be his final statement, No Room for Small Dreams spans decades and events, but as much as it is about what happened, it is about why it happened. Examining pivotal moments in Israel's rise, Peres explores what makes for a great leader, how to make hard choices in a climate of uncertainty and distress, the challenges of balancing principles with policies, and the liberating nature of imagination and unpredicted innovation. In doing so, he not only charts a better path forward for his beloved country but provides deep and universal wisdom for younger generations who seek to lead - be it in politics, business, or the broader service of making our planet a safer, more peaceful, and just place.

©2017 Shimon Peres (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Shimon Peres
Length: 7 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
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Personal Injuries

3 ratings

Summary

To Robbie Feaver the law is all about making a play - to a client, a jury, or a judge. But when the flashy, womanizing, multimillion-dollar personal injury lawyer is caught offering bribes, he's forced to wear a wire. Even as the besieged attorney looks after his ailing wife, Feaver must also make tapes that will hurl his friends, his enemies, his city, and a particular FBI undercover agent into a crisis of conscience and law. Now Robbie Feaver is making the play of his life.

©1999 Scott Turow (P)2014 Hachette Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Scott Turow
Length: 16 hrs and 30 mins
Available on Audible
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Naked Lunch

8 ratings

Summary

Naked Lunch is one of the most important novels of the 20th century, a book that redefined not just literature but American culture. This is an unnerving tale of a narcotics addict unmoored in New York, Tangiers, and, ultimately, a nightmarish wasteland known as Interzone. The restored text includes many editorial corrections and incorporates Burroughs's notes on the text and several essays he wrote over the years about the book. For the Burroughs enthusiast and neophyte alike, this is a valuable and fresh experience of this classic of our culture.

©2001 William S. Burroughs Trust (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 10 hrs and 24 mins
Available on Audible
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Rise to Rebellion

1 rating

Summary

Jeff Shaara dazzled audiences with his best-selling novels Gods and Generals, The Last Full Measure, and Gone for Soldiers. Now the acclaimed author who illuminated the Civil War and the Mexican-American War brilliantly brings to life the American Revolution, creating a superb saga of the men who helped to forge the destiny of a nation.  In 1770, the fuse of revolution is lit by a fateful command - “Fire!” - as England’s peacekeeping mission ignites into the Boston Massacre. The senseless killing of civilians leads to a tumultuous trial in which lawyer John Adams must defend the very enemy who has assaulted and abused the laws he holds sacred.  The taut courtroom drama soon broadens into a stunning epic of war as King George III leads a reckless and corrupt government in London toward the escalating abuse of his colonies. Outraged by the increasing loss of their liberties, an extraordinary gathering of America’s most inspiring characters confronts the British presence with the ideals that will change history.  John Adams, the idealistic attorney devoted to the law, who rises to greatness by the power of his words...Ben Franklin, one of the most celebrated men of his time, the elderly and audacious inventor and philosopher who endures firsthand the hostile prejudice of the British government...Thomas Gage, the British general given the impossible task of crushing a colonial rebellion without starting an all-out war...George Washington, the dashing Virginian whose battle experience in the French and Indian War brings him the recognition that elevates him to command of a colonial army...and many other immortal names from the Founding Family of the colonial struggle - Abigail Adams, Thomas Jefferson, Joseph Warren, Samuel Adams, Richard Henry Lee - captured as never before in their full flesh-and-blood humanity.  More than a powerful portrait of the people and purpose of the revolution, Rise to Rebellion is a vivid account of history’s most pivotal events. The Boston Tea Party, the battles of Concord and Bunker Hill - all are recreated with the kind of breathtaking detail only a master like Jeff Shaara can muster. His most impressive achievement, Rise to Rebellion reveals with new immediacy how philosophers became fighters, ideas their ammunition, and how a scattered group of colonies became the United States of America.

©2001 Jeff Shaara (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jeff Shaara
Length: 23 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
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The Gatekeepers

6 ratings

Summary

Now with a chapter on the chaos in the Trump administration, The New York Times best-selling, behind-the-scenes look at the White House Chiefs of Staff, whose actions - and inactions - have defined the course of our country. What do Dick Cheney and Rahm Emanuel have in common? Aside from polarizing personalities, both served as chief of staff to the president of the United States - as did Donald Rumsfeld, Leon Panetta, and a relative handful of others. The chiefs of staff, often referred to as "the gatekeepers", wield tremendous power in Washington and beyond; they decide who is allowed to see the president, negotiate with Congress to push POTUS's agenda, and - most crucially - enjoy unparalleled access to the leader of the free world. Each chief can make or break an administration, and each president reveals himself by the chief he picks.   Through extensive, intimate interviews with 18 living chiefs (including Reince Priebus) and two former presidents, award-winning journalist and producer Chris Whipple pulls back the curtain on this unique fraternity. In doing so, he revises our understanding of presidential history, revealing to us how James Baker’s expert managing of the White House, the press, and Capitol Hill paved the way for the Reagan Revolution - and, conversely, how Watergate, the Iraq War, and even the bungled Obamacare rollout might have been prevented by a more effective chief. Filled with shrewd analysis and never-before-reported details, The Gatekeepers offers an essential portrait of the toughest job in Washington.

©2017 Chris Whipple (P)2017 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 12 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
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Take Off Your Shoes

Summary

The Eat, Pray, Love for busy executives, Take Off Your Shoes invites the listener to join a journey of self-rediscovery. If 10 Percent Happier made you more mindful, and Wild more adventuresome, then this book will ground you and help you find your soul. A hard-charging CEO of a large enterprise, Ben Feder discovers that he is losing the very things that sustained him over his years of business success. Unsettled by his insight and determined to rebuild family relationships and rejuvenate his sense of purpose, he risks his career on a life-altering physical and emotional journey. Together with his wife and children, Feder sets off for an exotic island on a self-prescribed sabbatical year. That experience transforms them all. The writing is honest and moving, baring the author’s innermost struggles and fears, and enticing the reader to share his quest. As Feder navigates the thrills and pitfalls of his time away, he draws us into remarkable examinations of values and priorities in adult life.

©2018 Benjamin Feder (P)2019 Benjamin Feder

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Ben Feder
Length: 7 hrs and 34 mins
Available on Audible
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What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank

Summary

These eight new stories from the celebrated novelist and short-story writer Nathan Englander display a gifted young author grappling with the great questions of modern life, with a command of language and the imagination that place Englander at the very forefront of contemporary American fiction. The title story, inspired by Raymond Carver’s masterpiece, is a provocative portrait of two marriages in which the Holocaust is played out as a devastating parlor game. In the outlandishly dark “Camp Sundown” vigilante justice is undertaken by a group of geriatric campers in a bucolic summer enclave. “Free Fruit for Young Widows” is a small, sharp study in evil, lovingly told by a father to a son. “Sister Hills” chronicles the history of Israel’s settlements from the eve of the Yom Kippur War through the present, a political fable constructed around the tale of two mothers who strike a terrible bargain to save a child. Marking a return to two of Englander’s classic themes, “Peep Show” and “How We Avenged the Blums” wrestle with sexual longing and ingenuity in the face of adversity and peril. And “Everything I Know About My Family on My Mother’s Side” is suffused with an intimacy and tenderness that break new ground for a writer who seems constantly to be expanding the parameters of what he can achieve in the short form. Beautiful and courageous, funny and achingly sad, Englander’s work is a revelation.

©2012 Nathan Englander (P)2012 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Don't Shed Your Tears for Anyone Who Lives on These Streets

Summary

From the acclaimed Argentine writer, one of Granta's Best Young Spanish-Language Novelists: a bold, ambitious new novel about how art became politics and politics became crime during the cataclysm of the Second World War. Pinerolo, Italy, April 1945. At a conference in support of fascism, a writer disappears and is found dead at the bottom of a cliff. Thirty years later, a young man - a political activist or a terrorist, depending on your perspective - interviews survivors from the conference to try to uncover the truth about what happened and its consequences. Who was the writer? What did he believe in? Why, shortly before his death, did he save a man who could have killed him? Where is his lost work? And what does any of this have to do with a teenager in contemporary Milan involved in a violent confrontation with the police? Don't Shed Your Tears for Anyone Who Lives on These Streets is a razor-sharp, completely original exploration of our most timeless concerns - guilt, betrayal, the legacy of earlier generations - and probes the question of what literature is: how it explains our times and irrevocably changes our lives.

©2020 Patricio Pron (P)2020 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Tsar of Love and Techno

Summary

From the New York Times best-selling author of A Constellation of Vital Phenomena - dazzling, poignant, and lyrical interwoven stories about family, sacrifice, the legacy of war, and the redemptive power of art. This stunning, exquisitely written collection introduces a cast of remarkable characters whose lives intersect in ways both life-affirming and heartbreaking. A 1930s Soviet censor painstakingly corrects offending photographs deep underneath Leningrad, bewitched by the image of a disgraced prima ballerina. A chorus of women recount their stories and those of their grandmothers, former gulag prisoners who settled their Siberian mining town. Two pairs of brothers share a fierce, protective love. Young men across the former USSR face violence at home and in the military. And great sacrifices are made in the name of an oil landscape unremarkable except for the almost incomprehensibly peaceful past it depicts. In stunning prose, with rich character portraits and a sense of history reverberating into the present, The Tsar of Love and Techno is a captivating work from one of our greatest new talents.

©2015 Anthony Marra (P)2015 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Loon Lake

Summary

It is the Great Depression of the 1930s, and a passionate young man from Paterson, New Jersey, leaves home to find his fortune. What he finds, on a cold and lonely night in the Adirondack Mountains, is a vision of life so different from his own that it changes his destiny, leading him from the side of a railroad track to a magical place called Loon Lake.

©2010 E. L. Doctorow (P)2014 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 9 hrs and 33 mins
Available on Audible
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Benjamin's Crossing

Summary

The acclaimed and now-classic biographical novel of Walter Benjamin's last days - adapted into screenplay by Jay Parini. It is 1940. For the past decade, Walter Benjamin - the German-Jewish critic and philosopher - has been writing his masterpiece in a library in Paris, a city he loves. Now, Nazi tanks have overrun the suburbs, and Benjamin is forced to flee. With a battered briefcase that contains his precious manuscript of a thousand handwritten pages, he sets off for the border and is led by chance to a young anti-Nazi who is taking Jews and other refugees over the Pyrenees into Spain, where they may (with luck) make their way to freedom in Portugal or South America. Beloved biographical novelist Jay Parini's thrilling tale of escape is beautifully interwoven with vignettes of Benjamin's complex, cosmopolitan past: his privileged childhood in Berlin, his years with the German Youth Movement, his university days, his close friendship with Gershom Scholem, the eminent scholar of Jewish mysticism, and many other well-known artists and intellectuals who were part of Benjamin's intimate circle between the two World Wars.  Part tragedy, part dark comedy, this sharply realized historical novel tells one of the great and most moving peripheral stories of the Holocaust. 

©1996 Jay Parini (P)2021 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Night Strangers

Summary

From the bestselling author of The Double Bind, Skeletons at the Feast, and Secrets of Eden, comes a riveting and dramatic ghost story. In a dusty corner of a basement in a rambling Victorian house in northern New Hampshire, a door has long been sealed shut with 39 six-inch-long carriage bolts. The home's new owners are Chip and Emily Linton and their twin ten-year-old daughters. Together they hope to rebuild their lives there after Chip, an airline pilot, has to ditch his 70-seat regional jet in Lake Champlain after double engine failure. Unlike the Miracle on the Hudson, however, most of the passengers aboard Flight 1611 die on impact or drown. The body count? Thirty-nine – a coincidence not lost on Chip when he discovers the number of bolts in that basement door. Meanwhile, Emily finds herself wondering about the women in this sparsely populated White Mountain village – self-proclaimed herbalists – and their interest in her fifth-grade daughters. Are the women mad? Or is it her husband, in the wake of the tragedy, whose grip on sanity has become desperately tenuous? The result is a poignant and powerful ghost story with all the hallmarks readers have come to expect from bestselling novelist Chris Bohjalian: a palpable sense of place, an unerring sense of the demons that drive us, and characters we care about deeply. The difference this time? Some of those characters are dead. From the Hardcover edition.

©2011 Chris Bohjalian (P)2011 Random House Audio

Length: 14 hrs and 7 mins
Available on Audible
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Beyond the Hundredth Meridian

1 rating

Summary

Pulitzer Prize winner Wallace Stegner recounts the remarkable career of Major John Wesley Powell, the distinguished ethnologist and geologist who explored the Colorado River, the Grand Canyon, and the homeland of the Southwest Indian tribes. This classic work is a penetrating and insightful study of the Powell’s career, from the beginning of the Powell Survey, in which Powell and his men famously became the first to descend the Colorado River, to his eventual expulsion from the Geological Survey. In masterful prose, Stegner details the expedition, as well as the philosophies and ideas that drove Powell.

©1954 Wallace E. Stegner (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 17 hrs and 5 mins
Available on Audible
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Everybody's Fool

1 rating

Summary

Richard Russo, at the very top of his game, now returns to North Bath in upstate New York and the characters who made Nobody's Fool (1993) a "confident, assured novel" according to the San Francisco Chronicle back then. "Simple as family love, yet nearly as complicated." Or, as The Boston Globe put it, "a big, rambunctious novel with endless riffs and unstoppable human hopefulness". The irresistible Sully, who in the intervening years has come by some unexpected good fortune, is staring down a VA cardiologist's estimate that he has only a year or two left, and it's hard work trying to keep this news from the most important people in his life: Ruth, the married woman he carried on with for years...the ultra-hapless Rub Squeers, who worries that he and Sully aren't still best friends...Sully's son and grandson, for whom he was mostly an absentee figure (and now a regretful one). We also enjoy the company of Doug Raymer, the chief of police who's obsessing primarily over the identity of the man his wife might've been about to run off with before dying in a freak accident...Bath's mayor, the former academic Gus Moynihan, whose wife problems are, if anything, even more pressing...and then there's Carl Roebuck, whose lifelong run of failing upward might now come to ruin. And finally there's Charice Bond - a light at the end of the tunnel that is Chief Raymer's office - as well as her brother, Jerome, who might well be the train barreling into the station. Everybody's Fool is filled with humor, heart, hard times, and people you can't help but love, possibly because their various faults make them so stridently human. This is classic Russo - and a crowning achievement from one of the greatest storytellers of our time.

©2016 Richard Russo (P)2016 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 18 hrs and 53 mins
Available on Audible
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At the Edge of the Orchard

3 ratings

Summary

“With impeccable research and flawless prose, Chevalier perfectly conjures the grandeur of the pristine Wild West...and the everyday adventurers - male and female - who were bold enough or foolish enough to be drawn to the unknown. She crafts for us an excellent experience.” (USA Today) From internationally best-selling author Tracy Chevalier, author of A Single Thread, comes a riveting drama of a pioneer family on the American frontier.  It's 1838. James and Sadie Goodenough have settled where their wagon got stuck - in the muddy, stagnant swamps of Northwest Ohio. They and their five children work relentlessly to tame their patch of land, buying saplings from a local tree man known as John Appleseed so they can cultivate the 50 apple trees required to stake their claim on the property. But the orchard they plant sows the seeds of a long battle. James loves the apples, reminders of an easier life back in Connecticut, while Sadie prefers the applejack they make, an alcoholic refuge from brutal frontier life.  It's 1853. Their youngest child, Robert, is wandering through Gold Rush California. Restless and haunted by the broken family he left behind, he has made his way alone across the country. In the redwood and giant sequoia groves, he finds some solace, collecting seeds for a naturalist who sells plants from the new world to the gardeners of England. But you can run only so far, even in America, and when Robert's past makes an unexpected appearance, he must decide whether to strike out again or stake his own claim to a home at last.  Chevalier tells a fierce, beautifully crafted story in At the Edge of the Orchard, her most graceful and richly imagined work yet. 

©2016 Tracy Chevalier (P)2016 Penguin Audio

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Man Riding West

Summary

Louis L'Amour said that the West was no place for the frightened or the mean. It was a "big country needing big men and women to live in it." This volume presents nine of L'Amour's ever-popular short stories - history that lives forever.

©1986 Jon Tuska and Louis L'Amour (P)2014 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Length: 6 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last Full Measure

The Last Full Measure

Summary

In the Pulitzer Prize-winning classic The Killer Angels, Michael Shaara created the finest Civil War novel of our time, an enduring best seller that has sold more than two million copies. In the best-selling Gods and Generals, Shaara's son, Jeff, brilliantly sustained his father's vision, telling the epic story of the events culminating in the Battle of Gettysburg. Now, Jeff Shaara brings this legendary father-son trilogy to its stunning conclusion in a novel that brings to life the final two years of the Civil War. As The Last Full Measure opens, Gettysburg is past and the war advances to its third brutal year. On the Union side, the gulf between the politicians in Washington and the generals in the field yawns ever wider. Never has the cumbersome Union Army so desperately needed a decisive, hard-nosed leader. It is at this critical moment that Lincoln places Ulysses S. Grant in command - and turns the tide of war. For Robert E. Lee, Gettysburg was an unspeakable disaster - compounded by the shattering loss of the fiery Stonewall Jackson two months before. Lee knows better than anyone that the South cannot survive a war of attrition. But with the total devotion of his generals - Longstreet, Hill, Stuart - and his unswerving faith in God, Lee is determined to fight to the bitter end.  Here too is Joshua Chamberlain, the college professor who emerged as the Union hero of Gettysburg - and who will rise to become one of the greatest figures of the Civil War. Battle by staggering battle, Shaara dramatizes the escalating confrontation between Lee and Grant - complicated, heroic, deeply troubled men. From the costly Battle of the Wilderness to the agonizing siege of Petersburg to Lee's epoch-making surrender at Appomattox, Shaara portrays the riveting conclusion of the Civil War through the minds and hearts of the individuals who gave their last full measure. Full of human passion and the spellbinding truth of history, The Last Full Measure is the fitting capstone to a magnificent literary trilogy.

©2020 Jeff Shaara (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Jeff Shaara
Length: 26 hrs and 42 mins
Available on Audible
Cover art for 12 Stories of Christmas

12 Stories of Christmas

Summary

Experience the wonderment of Christmas with this endearing collection of original stories. Even though he's got 3.5 million copies of books in print, Pastor Robert Morgan writes only one short fiction story each year - an original work he shares with his church on Christmas Eve. Now with a fresh new cover and six new stories, the entire collection of 12 is available in this beautiful volume. Beginning is a foreword by David Jeremiah, followed by adventures that evoke the splendor and love found at the manger over 2000 years ago. You'll meet a shy, bookish boy who finds himself center stage in a Christmas pageant, a family whose car full of presents and groceries disappears, and a mountain man trapped in a blizzard with his 12-year-old grandson. You'll meet characters you feel you've known your whole life who'll make you laugh one minute and cry the next. So this year, and the years to follow, gather your family and experience the true spirit of adoration and worship at Christmas through this timeless gift of story.

©2014 Robert Morgan (P)2020 Thomas Nelson

Available on Audible
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Dinner at the Center of the Earth

Summary

The best work yet from the Pulitzer finalist and best-selling author of For the Relief of Unbearable Urges - a political thriller that unfolds in the highly charged territory of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and pivots on the complex relationship between a secret prisoner and his guard. A prisoner in a secret cell. The guard who has watched over him a dozen years. An American waitress in Paris. A young Palestinian man in Berlin who strikes up an odd friendship with a wealthy Canadian businessman. And The General, Israel's most controversial leader, who lies dying in a hospital, the only man who knows of the prisoner's existence. From these vastly different lives, Nathan Englander has woven a powerful, intensely suspenseful portrait of a nation riven by insoluble conflict, even as the lives of its citizens become fatefully and inextricably entwined - a political thriller of the highest order that interrogates the anguished, violent division between Israelis and Palestinians and dramatizes the immense moral ambiguities haunting both sides. Who is right, who is wrong - who is the guard, who is truly the prisoner? A tour de force from one of America's most acclaimed voices in contemporary fiction.

©2017 Nathan Englander (P)2017 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 7 hrs and 1 min
Available on Audible
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Titanic: Voices From the Disaster

Summary

Scheduled to coincide with the 100th anniversary of the tragic sinking of the Titanic, a topic that continues to haunt and thrill listeners to this day, this audiobook by critically acclaimed author Deborah Hopkinson weaves together the voices and stories of real Titanic survivors and witnesses to the disaster - from the stewardess Violet Jessop to Captain Arthur Rostron of the Carpatia, who came to the rescue of the sinking ship. Packed with heart-stopping action, devastating drama, fascinating historical details, and quotes from primary sources, this gripping story, which follows the Titanic and its passengers from the ship's celebrated launch at Belfast to her cataclysmic icy end, is sure to thrill and move listeners.

©2012 Deborah Hopkinson (P)2012 Listening Library

Length: 4 hrs and 55 mins
Available on Audible
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Drums Along the Mohawk

2 ratings

Summary

Drums along the Mohawk, Walter D. Edmonds' masterpiece, is not only the best historical novel about upstate New York since James Fenimore Cooper, it was also number one on the bestseller list for two years, only yielding to the epic Gone with the Wind. This is the story of the forgotten pioneers of the Mohawk Valley during the Revolutionary War. Here Gilbert Martin and his young wife struggled and lived and hoped. Combating hardships almost too great to endure, they helped give to America a legend that still stirs the heart. In the midst of love and hate, life and death, danger and disaster, they stuck to the acres that were theirs and fought a war without ever quite understanding it. Drums along the Mohawk has been an American classic since its original publication in 1936.

©2015 Walter D. Edmonds (P)2015 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 21 hrs and 1 min
Available on Audible
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The Orchardist

4 ratings

Summary

At the turn of the 20th century, in a rural stretch of the Pacific Northwest, a reclusive orchardist, William Talmadge, tends to apples and apricots as if they were loved ones. A gentle man, he's found solace in the sweetness of the fruit he grows and the quiet, beating heart of the land he cultivates. One day, two teenage girls appear and steal his fruit from the market; they later return to the outskirts of his orchard to see the man who gave them no chase. Feral, scared, and very pregnant, the girls take up on Talmadge's land and indulge in his deep reservoir of compassion. Just as the girls begin to trust him, men arrive in the orchard with guns, and the shattering tragedy that follows will set Talmadge on an irrevocable course not only to save and protect but also to reconcile the ghosts of his own troubled past. Transcribing America as it once was before railways and roads connected its corners, Amanda Coplin weaves a tapestry of solitary souls who come together in the wake of unspeakable cruelty and misfortune. She writes with breathtaking precision and empathy, and in The Orchardist she crafts an astonishing debut novel about a man who disrupts the lonely harmony of an ordered life when he opens his heart and lets the world in.

©2012 Amanda Coplin (P)2012 HarperCollins Publishers Ltd.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 14 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
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The Altruists

2 ratings

Summary

A New York Times Editors' Choice  "[An] intelligent, funny, and remarkably assured first novel.... [Andrew Ridker establishes] himself as a big, promising talent.... Hilarious.... Astute and highly entertaining.... Outstanding." (The New York Times Book Review)  "With humor and warmth, Ridker explores the meaning of family and its inevitable baggage. The Altruists may not paint the prettiest picture, but it's a relatable, unforgettable view of regular people making mistakes and somehow finding their way back to each other." (People Magazine's "Book of the Week") A Real Simple Best Book of the Year (So Far) Named a most anticipated book of 2019 by The Millions and PureWow. A vibrant and perceptive novel about a father's plot to win back his children's inheritance. Arthur Alter is in trouble. A middling professor at a Midwestern college, he can't afford his mortgage, he's exasperated his much younger girlfriend, and his kids won't speak to him. And then there's the money - the small fortune his late wife, Francine, kept secret, which she bequeathed directly to his children.  Those children are Ethan, an anxious recluse living off his mother's money on a choice plot of Brooklyn real estate; and Maggie, a would-be do-gooder trying to fashion herself a noble life of self-imposed poverty. On the verge of losing the family home, Arthur invites his children back to St. Louis under the guise of a reconciliation. But in doing so, he unwittingly unleashes a Pandora's box of age-old resentments and long-buried memories - memories that orbit Francine, the matriarch whose life may hold the key to keeping them together.  Spanning New York, Paris, Boston, St. Louis, and a small desert outpost in Zimbabwe, The Altruists is a darkly funny (and ultimately tender) family saga that confronts the divide between baby boomers and their millennial offspring. It's a novel about money, privilege, politics, campus culture, dating, talk therapy, rural sanitation, infidelity, kink, the American beer industry, and what it means to be a "good person."

©2019 Andrew Ridker (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 56 mins
Available on Audible
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Our Father

Summary

National best seller Pope Francis illuminates the Lord’s Prayer, the most important prayer in all of Christianity, offering listeners a guide to living a life of meaning, purpose, and strength.    In conversation with Father Marco Pozza, a theologian and prison chaplain in Padua, Italy, Pope Francis offers unprecedented insight into Jesus’ most profound words as he explores the importance of embracing social justice, benevolence, and forgiveness in our hearts and minds.    Looking to address the concerns and hopes of today’s men and women, Our Father: Reflections on the Lord’s Prayer is a guide to living a life full of meaning, purpose, and strength. “We need courage to pray the Our Father,” writes Pope Francis, “to truly believe that God is the Father who accompanies us, forgives us, gives us bread, is attentive to all that we ask, clothes us even better than the flowers of the field. To believe is a big risk.” Challenging this doubt and fear, he issues a call to “dare...help one another to dare”.    With excerpts from some of the Pontiff’s most cherished teachings, this beautiful work offers words of encouragement and inspiration for all who are seeking hope and direction in our often tumultuous world. 

©2018 Pope Francis (P)2018 Random House Audio

Author: Pope Francis
Length: 1 hr and 53 mins
Available on Audible
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The Kid

3 ratings

Summary

A new novel from Ron Hansen, the award-winning author of The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford, about an iconic American criminal of the old West: legendary outlaw Billy the Kid. Born Henry McCarty, Billy the Kid was a diminutive, charming, blond-haired young man who, growing up in New York, Kansas, and later New Mexico, demonstrated a precocious dexterity at firing six-shooters with either hand - a skill that turned him into an American legend of the old West. He was smart, well spoken, attractive to both white and Mexican women, a good dancer, and a man with a nose for money, horses, and trouble. His spree of crimes and murders has been immortalized in dime Westerns, novels, and movies. But the whole story of his short, epically violent life has never been told as it has been here. In The Kid, Ron Hansen showcases his masterful research and inimitable style as he breathes life into history, bringing listeners back into the late 1800s and into Billy's boyhood as a ranch hand just trying to wrest a fortune from an unforgiving landscape. We are with Billy in every gunfight and horse theft, and we get to know him in full before his grand death in a hail of bullets in 1881 at the age of 21. Original, powerful, and swiftly told, The Kid is an unforgettable listen about a uniquely American antihero.

©2016 Ron Hansen (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Ron Hansen
Length: 10 hrs and 45 mins
Available on Audible
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We'll Always Have Paris

Summary

From the winner of the National Book Foundation’s Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters comes a brand-new, never-before-published collection of short stories. Following the success of his recent collections, The Cat’s Pajamas and One More for the Road, Ray Bradbury has once again pulled together a stellar group of stories sure to delight listeners of all ages. We’ll Always Have Paris is a treasure trove of Bradbury gems - eerie and strange, nostalgic and bittersweet, searching and speculative - all of which have never before been published. A brilliant addition to the master’s oeuvre, this wonderfully entertaining and imaginative collection is a joyous celebration of the lifelong work of a literary legend.

©2009 Ray Bradbury (P)2020 HarperCollins Publishers

Available on Audible
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Defying Hitler

1 rating

Summary

"A terrifying and timely account of resistance in the face of the greatest of evils.” (Alex Kershaw, New York Times best-selling author of The First Wave) An enthralling story that vividly resurrects the web of everyday Germans who resisted Nazi rule. Nazi Germany is remembered as a nation of willing fanatics. But beneath the surface, countless ordinary, everyday Germans actively resisted Hitler. Some passed industrial secrets to Allied spies. Some forged passports to help Jews escape the Reich. For others, resistance was as simple as writing a letter denouncing the rigidity of Nazi law. No matter how small the act, the danger was the same - any display of defiance was met with arrest, interrogation, torture, and even death. Defying Hitler follows the underground network of Germans who believed standing against the Fuhrer to be more important than their own survival. Their bravery is astonishing - a schoolgirl beheaded by the Gestapo for distributing anti-Nazi fliers; a German American teacher who smuggled military intel to Soviet agents, becoming the only American woman executed by the Nazis; a pacifist philosopher murdered for his role in a plot against Hitler; a young idealist who joined the SS to document their crimes, only to end up, to his horror, an accomplice to the Holocaust. This remarkable account illuminates their struggles, yielding an accessible narrative history with the pace and excitement of a thriller.

©2019 Gordon Thomas and Greg Lewis (P)2019 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 22 hrs and 1 min
Available on Audible
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Recapitulation

Summary

In this moving sequel to Big Rock Candy Mountain, Bruce Mason returns to Salt Lake City, not for his aunt's funeral but to encounter after 45 years the place he fled in bitterness. A successful statesman and diplomat, Mason had buried his awkward and lonely childhood and sealed himself off from the thrills and torments of adolescence to become a figure who commanded international respect. But the realities of the present recede in the face of the ghosts of his past. As he makes the perfunctory arrangements for the funeral, we enter with him on an intensely personal and painful inner pilgrimage, meeting the father who darkened his childhood, the mother whose support was both redeeming and embarrassing, the friend who drew him into the respectable world of which he so craved to be a part, and the woman he nearly married. In this profoundly moving book, Stegner has drawn an intimate portrait of a man understanding how his life has been shaped by experiences seemingly remote and inconsequential.

Public Domain (P)2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 10 hrs and 52 mins
Available on Audible
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Larry H. Miller: Behind the Drive

1 rating

Summary

Hear firsthand from multitudes of people whose lives were influenced, inspired, and even transformed by the compassion, generosity, and leadership of Larry H. Miller. Larry H. Miller played by his own rules. Owner of an NBA franchise and founder of one of the country's largest automotive retail groups, Larry was a college dropout who went on to buy or build nearly 100 businesses. While his life as a successful businessman played out in public, his health challenges, as well as his quiet acts of service, were known to very few. Behind the Drive contains 99 uplifting and untold stories from every aspect and era of Larry's life. Contributors range from NBA legends to religious officials, business moguls to political leaders, employees to childhood friends, and colleagues to competitors. These stories of an ordinary-yet-extraordinary man will inspire listeners to find and live their own greatness by following Larry's example of working hard at something he loved, applying his God-given talents in service to others, and allowing his life to be guided by something greater than himself. This book is a guide for anyone who wishes to find success in today's busy world. The stories in Behind the Drive have the power to lift and inspire the next generation of leaders and entrepreneurs, as well as help everyone discover Larry's formula for success: do work you love, get better at it every day, and serve others.

©2016 Bryan Miller (P)2016 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Available on Audible
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Doc

1 rating

Summary

The year is 1878, peak of the Texas cattle trade. The place is Dodge City, Kansas, a saloon-filled cow town jammed with liquored-up adolescent cowboys and young Irish hookers. Violence is random and routine, but when the burned body of a mixed-blood boy named Johnnie Sanders is discovered, his death shocks a part-time policeman named Wyatt Earp. And it is a matter of strangely personal importance to Doc Holliday, the frail 26-year-old dentist who has just opened an office at No. 24, Dodge House.  Beautifully educated, born to the life of a Southern gentleman, Dr. John Henry Holliday is given an awful choice at the age of 22: die within months in Atlanta or leave everyone and everything he loves in the hope that the dry air and sunshine of the West will restore him to health. Young, scared, lonely, and sick, he arrives on the rawest edge of the Texas frontier just as an economic crash wrecks the dreams of a nation. Soon, with few alternatives open to him, Doc Holliday is gambling professionally; he is also living with Mária Katarina Harony, a high-strung Hungarian whore with dazzling turquoise eyes, who can quote Latin classics right back at him. Kate makes it her business to find Doc the high-stakes poker games that will support them both in high style. It is Kate who insists that the couple travel to Dodge City, because “That’s where the money is.”  And that is where the unlikely friendship of Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp really begins - before Wyatt Earp is the prototype of the square-jawed, fearless lawman; before Doc Holliday is the quintessential frontier gambler; before the gunfight at the O.K. Corral links their names forever in American frontier mythology - when neither man wanted fame or deserved notoriety. Authentic, moving, and witty, Mary Doria Russell’s fifth novel redefines these two towering figures of the American West and brings to life an extraordinary cast of historical characters, including Holliday’s unforgettable companion, Kate. First and last, however, Doc is John Henry Holliday’s story, written with compassion, humor, and respect by one of our greatest contemporary storytellers.

©2011 Mary Doria Russell (P)2011 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 16 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
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Revolutionary Road

10 ratings

Summary

From the moment of its publication in 1961, this masterpiece of realistic fiction was hailed as the most evocative portrayal of the opulent desolation of the American suburbs. It's the story of Frank and April Wheeler, a bright, beautiful, and talented couple who have lived on the assumption that greatness is only just around the corner. With heartbreaking compassion and remorseless clarity, Richard Yates shows how Frank and April mortgage their spiritual birthright, betraying not only each other, but their best selves. In his introduction to this edition, novelist Richard Ford pays homage to the novel's lasting influence and enduring power.

©2000 Richard Yates (P)2008 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 24 mins
Available on Audible
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The Divorce Papers

Summary

Witty and wonderful, sparkling and sophisticated, this debut romantic comedy brilliantly tells the story of one very messy, very high-profile divorce, and the endearingly cynical young lawyer dragooned into handling it. Twenty-nine-year-old Sophie Diehl is happy toiling away as a criminal law associate at an old line New England firm where she very much appreciates that most of her clients are behind bars. Everyone at Traynor, Hand knows she abhors face-to-face contact, but one weekend, with all the big partners away, Sophie must handle the intake interview for the daughter of the firm's most important client. After 18 years of marriage, Mayflower descendant Mia Meiklejohn Durkheim has just been served divorce papers in a humiliating scene at the popular local restaurant Golightly's. She is locked and loaded to fight her eminent and ambitious husband, Dr. Daniel Durkheim, chief of the Department of Pediatric Oncology, for custody of their 10-year-old daughter Jane - and she also burns to take him down a peg. Sophie warns Mia that she's never handled a divorce case before, but Mia can't be put off. As she so disarmingly puts it: It's her first divorce, too. Debut novelist Susan Rieger doesn't leave a word out of place in this hilarious and expertly crafted debut that shines with the power and pleasure of storytelling. Told through personal correspondence, office memos, emails, articles, and legal papers, this playful reinvention of the epistolary form races along with humor and heartache, exploring the complicated family dynamic that results when marriage fails. For Sophie, the whole affair sparks a hard look at her own relationships - not only with her parents, but with colleagues, friends, lovers, and most importantly, herself. Much like Where'd You Go, Bernadette, The Divorce Papers will have you laughing aloud and thanking the literature gods for this incredible, fresh new voice in fiction.

©2014 Susan Rieger (P)2014 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Open Heart

Summary

A profoundly and unexpectedly intimate, deeply affecting summing up of his life so far, from one of the most cherished moral voices of our time. Eighty-two years old, facing emergency heart surgery and his own mortality, Elie Wiesel reflects back on his life. Emotions, images, faces, and questions flash through his mind. His family before and during the unspeakable Event. The gifts of marriage and children and grandchildren that followed. In his writing, in his teaching, in his public life, has he done enough for memory and the survivors? His ongoing questioning of God - where has it led? Is there hope for mankind? The world's tireless ambassador of tolerance and justice has given us this luminous account of hope and despair, an exploration of the love, regrets, and abiding faith of a remarkable man.

©2012 Elie Wiesel (P)2012 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 1 hr and 25 mins
Available on Audible
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The River of Kings

1 rating

Summary

The Altamaha River, Georgia's "Little Amazon", is one of the last truly wild places in America. Crossed by roads only five times in its 137 miles, the blackwater river is home to 1,000-year-old virgin cypresses, direct descendants of 18th-century Highland warriors, and a staggering array of rare and endangered species. The Altamaha is even rumored to harbor its own river monster, as well as traces of the oldest European fort in North America. Brothers Hunter and Lawton Loggins set off to kayak the river, bearing their father's ashes toward the sea. Hunter is a college student, Lawton a Navy SEAL on leave; they were raised by an angry, enigmatic shrimper who loved the river, and whose death remains a mystery that his sons are determined to solve. As the brothers proceed downriver, their story alternates with that of Jacques Le Moyne, the first European artist in North America, who accompanied a 1564 French expedition that began as a search for riches and ended in a bloody confrontation with Spanish conquistadors and native tribes. Twining past and present in one compelling narrative, The River of Kings is Taylor Brown's second novel, a dramatic and rewarding adventure through history, myth, and the shadows of family.

©2017 Taylor Brown (P)2017 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Taylor Brown
Length: 10 hrs and 58 mins
Available on Audible
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Riders of the Purple Sage

Summary

Now, for the first time in a century, Zane Grey’s best-known novel is presented in its original form exactly as he wrote it. When in the early 1900s Zane Grey took his manuscript to two publishing companies, they rejected it because of the theme of Mormon polygamy, fearing it would offend their readers and subscribers. Then Grey made a special plea to Frederick Duneka, who was vice-president of Harper & Bros. and who had been Mark Twain’s editor at that company. Duneka and his wife read the novel and liked it but feared it would offend some readers. Harper & Bros. agreed to publish a changed version of the novel and purchased both the book and magazine-serial rights. Given the task of executing the necessary editorial changes, a senior editor of the company made changes in tone, diction, and style as well as content. The novel first appeared in nineteen installments in the monthly magazine Field & Stream from January 1912 to July 1913. Blackstone Audio here presents the original, uncensored, unabridged novel Riders of the Purple Sage, obtained through the Golden West Literary Agency with the cooperation of Zane Grey’s son, Loren Grey, and the Ohio State Historical Society. In Cottonwoods, Utah, in 1871, a woman stands accused and a man is sentenced to whipping. Into this travesty of small-town justice rides the one man whom the town elders fear. His name is Lassiter, and he is a notorious gunman who's come to avenge his sister's death. It doesn't take Lassiter long to see that this once peaceful Mormon community is controlled by the corrupt Deacon Tull, a powerful elder who's trying to take the woman's land by forcing her to marry him, branding her foreman as a dangerous 'outsider'. Lassiter vows to help them. But when the ranch is attacked by horse thieves, cattle rustlers, and a mysterious masked rider, he realizes that they're up against something bigger, and more brutal, than the land itself.

©2005 Zane Grey, Inc. (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Zane Grey
Length: 12 hrs and 29 mins
Available on Audible
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The Generals Have No Clothes

Summary

The definitive book about America’s perpetual wars and how to end them from best-selling author, military expert, and award-winning journalist William M. Arkin. The first rule of perpetual war is to never stop, a fact which former NBC News analyst William M. Arkin knows better than anyone, having served in the Army and having covered all of America’s wars over the past three decades. He has spent his career investigating how the military throws around the word “war” to justify everything, from physical combat to today’s globe-straddling cyber and intelligence network.  In The Generals Have No Clothes, Arkin traces how we got where we are - bombing 10 countries, killing terrorists in dozens more - all without Congressional approval or public knowledge. Starting after the 9/11 attacks, the government put forth a singular idea that perpetual war was the only way to keep the American people safe. Arkin explains why President Obama failed to achieve his national security goal of ending war in Iraq and reducing our military engagements, and shows how President Trump has been frustrated in his attempts to end conflict in Afghanistan and Syria. He also reveals how COVID-19 is a watershed moment for the military, where the country’s civilian and public health needs clash with the demands of future wars against China and Russia, North Korea and Iran.  Proposing bold solutions, Arkin calls for a new era of civilian control over the military. He also calls for a Global Security Index (GSX), the security equivalent to the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which would measure the national and international events in real time to determine whether perpetual war is actually making the nation safer. Arguing that the American people should be empowered by facts rather than spurred by fear, The Generals Have No Clothes outlines how we can take control of the military...before it’s too late.

©2021 William M. Arkin. All rights reserved. (P)2021 Simon & Schuster, Inc. All rights reserved.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 5 hrs and 45 mins
Available on Audible
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The Purloining of Prince Oleomargarine

Summary

A never-before-published, previously unfinished Mark Twain children's story is brought to life by Caldecott Medal winners Philip Stead and Erin Stead. In a hotel in Paris one evening in 1879, Mark Twain sat with his young daughters, who begged their father for a story. Choosing a picture from a magazine to get started, Twain began telling them the tale of Johnny, a poor boy in possession of some magical seeds, who finds himself on a quest to rescue a stolen prince. Later, Twain would jot down some rough notes about the story, but the tale was left unfinished...until now. Plucked from the Mark Twain archives at the University of California, Berkeley, Twain's notes now form the foundation of a fairy tale picked up over a century later. With only Twain's fragmentary script and a story that stops partway as his guide, author Philip Stead has written a tale that imagines what might have been if Twain had fully realized this work. This is a story that reaches through time and brings us the debut children's book of America's most legendary writer, envisioned by one of today's most important names in children's literature.

©2017 Philip C. Stead (P)2017 Listening Library

Available on Audible
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The Big Rock Candy Mountain

4 ratings

Summary

Bo Mason, his wife, and his two boys live a transient life of poverty and despair. Drifting from town to town and from state to state, the violent, ruthless Bo seeks his fortune in the hotel business, in new farmland, and, eventually, in illegal rum-running throughout the treacherous back roads of the American Northwest. Based largely on his own childhood, Stegner has created a masterful, harrowing saga of a family trying to survive during the lean years of the early 20th century. It is the conflict between the hardscrabble existence and Bo's pursuit of the frontier myth and of the American dream that gives the book such resonance and power.

©1938 1940, 1942, 1943 by Wallace Stegner (P)2010 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 25 hrs and 38 mins
Available on Audible
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Lincoln at Cooper Union

Summary

Lincoln at Cooper Union explores Lincoln’s most influential and widely reported pre-presidential address—an extraordinary appeal by the Western politician to the Eastern elite that propelled him toward the Republican nomination for president. Delivered in New York in February 1860, the Cooper Union speech dispelled doubts about Lincoln’s suitability for the presidency and reassured conservatives of his moderation while reaffirming his opposition to slavery to Republican progressives. Award-winning Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer places Lincoln and his speech in the context of the times—an era of racism, politicized journalism, and public oratory as entertainment—and shows how the candidate framed the speech as an opportunity to continue his famous “debates” with his archrival, Democrat Stephen A. Douglas, on the question of slavery. Holzer describes the enormous risk Lincoln took by appearing in New York, where he exposed himself to the country’s most critical audience and took on Republican Senator William Henry Seward of New York, the front-runner, in his own backyard. Then he recounts a brilliant and innovative public-relations campaign, as Lincoln took the speech “on the road” in his successful quest for the presidency.

©2004 Harold Holzer (P)2011 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Category: History, Military
Length: 11 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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Sh*tshow

Summary

A Vintage Shorts Short Story original. David and Ellie didn’t realize how much they have missed their friends, two other couples who had moved out of their modest neighborhood in a desert city for the comforts of the suburbs, until the day of Donald Trump’s election. Separated also from their daughter who lived hours away in California, they were in a funk. But, when Ellie discovers a repellant offering floating in the small Jacuzzi in their backyard, David is blindsided. Little does he know this is but the first in a chain of grisly events that would play out in their lives with devastating consequences. In this darkly humorous, incisive, and absorbing political parable, written with the remarkable humanity he’s beloved for with countless fans, Pulitzer Prize-winner Richard Russo probes how deeply, yet imperceptibly, fissures can form amongst friends, neighbors, and families. 

©2019 Richard Russo (P)2019 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 1 hr and 7 mins
Available on Audible
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Coffins

Summary

A chill inducing and masterful collection of vampire tales, culled from the dark recesses of the nefarious and world renowned Vampires Archives.  Coffins, the third volume in the mass market series, contains some of the best of the best of vampire fiction. Including Harlan Ellison, Robert Bloch, Edgar Allan Poe, and F. Paul Wilson, it takes its listeners deep inside the crypts of the living dead, in all their supernatural splendor.  Featuring:  "Heart Pounding Shrieks" "Blood Soaked Moonlit Hunts" "High Stakes Adventure" "Evil Assignations"

©2010 Otto Penzler (P)2010 Random House

Available on Audible
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Via Negativa

Summary

"A beautiful and meditative exploration of shattered faith." (Brit Bennett, author of The Vanishing Half) A heartfelt, daring, divinely hilarious debut novel about a priest who embarks on a fateful journey with a pistol in his pocket and an injured coyote in his backseat. Father Dan is homeless. Dismissed by his conservative diocese for eccentricity and insubordination, he's made his exile into a kind of pilgrimage, transforming his Toyota Camry into a mobile monk's cell. Like the ascetic religious philosophers he idolizes, he intends to spend his trip in peaceful contemplation. But then he sees a minivan sideswipe a coyote. Unable to suppress his Franciscan impulses, he takes the wild animal in, wrapping its broken leg with an old T-shirt and feeding it Spam with a plastic spoon.  With his unexpected canine companion in the backseat, Dan makes his way west, encountering other offbeat travelers and stopping to take in the occasional roadside novelty (Martin's Hole to Hell, World-Famous Bottomless Pit Next Exit!). But the coyote is far from the only oddity fate has delivered into this churchless priest's care: It has also given him a bone-handled pistol, a box of bullets, and a letter from his estranged friend Paul - a summons of sorts, pulling him forward.  By the time Dan gets to where he's going, he'll be forced to reckon once and for all with the great mistakes of his past, and he will have to decide: Is penance better paid with revenge or with redemption? “Hornsby’s ruminative and God-haunted road trip novel is a hidden gem from this dementedly off-kilter year.” (John Francisconi, Buzzfeed)

©2020 Daniel Hornsby (P)2020 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 6 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
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Pride of Eden

Summary

The enthralling new novel from the acclaimed author of Fallen Land, The River of Kings, and Gods of Howl Mountain Retired racehorse jockey and Vietnam veteran Anse Caulfield rescues exotic big cats, elephants, and other creatures for Little Eden, a wildlife sanctuary near the abandoned ruins of a failed development on the Georgia coast. But when Anse's prized lion escapes, he becomes obsessed with replacing her - even if the means of rescue aren't exactly legal. Anse is joined by Malaya, a former soldier who hunted rhino and elephant poachers in Africa; Lope, whose training in falconry taught him to pilot surveillance drones; and Tyler, a veterinarian who has found a place in Anse's obsessive world. From the rhino wars of Africa to the battle for the Baghdad Zoo, from the edges of the Okefenokee Swamp to a remote private island off the Georgia coast, Anse and his team battle an underworld of smugglers, gamblers, breeders, trophy hunters, and others who exploit exotic game. Pride of Eden is Taylor Brown's brilliant fever dream of a novel: set on the eroding edge of civilization, rooted in dramatic events linked not only with each character's past, but to the prehistory of America, where great creatures roamed the continent and continue to inhabit our collective imagination.

©2020 Taylor Brown (P)2020 Blackstone Publishing

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Taylor Brown
Length: 10 hrs and 13 mins
Available on Audible
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Somebody Else's Daughter

Summary

A novel of psychological suspense in which a private adoption's dark consequences play out years later, at an elite prep school in the Berkshires.

©2008 Elizabeth Brundage (P)2008 Penguin

Length: 12 hrs and 57 mins
Available on Audible
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King of Spies

1 rating

Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of Escape from Camp 14 returns with the untold story of one of the most powerful spies in American history, shedding new light on the US role in the Korean War and its legacy. In 1946, Master Sergeant Donald Nichols was repairing jeeps on the sleepy island of Guam when he caught the eye of recruiters from the army's Counter Intelligence Corps. After just three months' training, he was sent to Korea, then a backwater beneath the radar of MacArthur's Pacific Command. Though he lacked the pedigree of most US spies - Nichols was a seventh-grade dropout - he quickly metamorphosed from army mechanic to black ops phenomenon. He insinuated himself into the affections of America's chosen puppet in South Korea, President Syngman Rhee, and became a pivotal player in the Korean War, warning months in advance about the North Korean invasion, breaking enemy codes, and identifying most of the targets destroyed by American bombs in North Korea. But Nichols' triumphs had a dark side. Immersed in a world of torture and beheadings, he became a spymaster with his own secret base, his own covert army, and his own rules. He recruited agents from refugee camps and prisons, sending many to their deaths on reckless missions. His closeness to Rhee meant that he witnessed - and did nothing to stop or even report - the slaughter of tens of thousands of South Korean civilians in anticommunist purges. Nichols' clandestine reign lasted for an astounding 11 years. In this riveting book, Blaine Harden traces Nichols' unlikely rise and tragic ruin, from his birth in an operatically dysfunctional family in New Jersey to his sordid postwar decline, which began when the US military sacked him in Korea, sent him to an air force psych ward in Florida, and subjected him - against his will - to months of electroshock therapy. But King of Spies is not just the story of one American spy: With napalmed villages and severed heads, high-level lies and long-running cover-ups, it reminds us that the darkest sins of the Vietnam War - and many other conflicts that followed - were first committed in Korea.

©2017 Blaine Harden (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 7 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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The Return of George Washington: 1783-1789

Summary

Pulitzer Prize-winning historian Edward J. Larson recovers a crucially important - yet almost always overlooked - chapter of George Washington's life, revealing how Washington saved the United States by coming out of retirement to lead the Constitutional Convention and serve as our first president. After leading the Continental Army to victory in the Revolutionary War, George Washington shocked the world: he retired. In December 1783, General Washington, the most powerful man in the country, stepped down as Commander in Chief and returned to private life at Mount Vernon. Yet as Washington contentedly grew his estate, the fledgling American experiment floundered. Under the Articles of Confederation, the weak central government was unable to raise revenue to pay its debts or reach a consensus on national policy. The states bickered and grew apart. When a Constitutional Convention was established to address these problems, its chances of success were slim. Jefferson, Madison, and the other Founding Fathers realized that only one man could unite the fractious states: George Washington. Reluctant, but duty-bound, Washington rode to Philadelphia in the summer of 1787 to preside over the Convention. Although Washington is often overlooked in most accounts of the period, this masterful new history from Pulitzer Prize winner Edward J. Larson brilliantly uncovers Washington's vital role in shaping the Convention - and shows how it was only with Washington’s support and his willingness to serve as President that the states were brought together and ratified the Constitution, thereby saving the country.

©2014 Edward J. Larson (P)2014 HarperCollins Publishers

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 6 mins
Available on Audible
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The Wall

Summary

Riveting and compelling, The Wall tells the inspiring story of 40 men and women who escape the dehumanizing horror of the Warsaw ghetto. John Hersey's novel documents the Warsaw ghetto both as an emblem of Nazi persecution and as a personal confrontation with torture, starvation, humiliation, and cruelty - a gripping and visceral story, impossible to pause.

©1950 John Hersey (P)2019 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: John Hersey
Length: 29 hrs and 14 mins
Available on Audible
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The Wolf and the Man

Summary

The attacks of the huge lobo Gray Cloud have caused the remarkable price of $2,500 to be put on his head. And it falls to big Dave Reagan, considered little better than a half-wit in that part of the range, to discover the monster held fast in two of his traps. Something in the fearless animal's eyes keeps young Dave from killing the wolf. Instead Dave releases Gray Cloud, who is unable to walk, and rescues him from a prairie fire that threatens them both. Dave brings Gray Cloud home and chains him in a shed that he uses as a blacksmith shop. Dave expects now that, as a result of this feat, his cousins will finally come to respect him. But as far as they are concerned, this is the time to put a bulletin Gray Cloud, cut off his paws and head fur, and claim the $2,500 reward. What they didn't anticipate is that Dave would object to their plan. Dave escapes with Gray Cloud into the wilderness, and it is there that the two become indelibly attached. It was an error, however, for Dave to think that men would not intrude on them. Before long both Dave and Gray Cloud are fugitives, having to protect each other as they attempt to elude their pursuers.

©2014 Max Brand (P)2014 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Max Brand
Length: 8 hrs and 20 mins
Available on Audible
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In the Spirit of Crazy Horse

1 rating

Summary

Here is the story of Leonard Peltier and the FBI's war on the American Indian Movement. On a hot June morning in 1975, a fatal shoot-out took place between FBI agents and American Indians on a remote property near Wounded Knee, South Dakota, in which an Indian and two federal agents were killed. Eventually, four members of the American Indian Movement were indicted on murder charges in the deaths of the two agents. Behind this violent chain of events lie issues of great complexity and profound historical resonance, brilliantly explicated by Peter Matthiessen in this controversial book.

©1980 Peter Matthiessen (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 28 hrs and 41 mins
Available on Audible
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The Red Daughter

Summary

Running from her father’s brutal legacy, Joseph Stalin’s daughter defects to the United States during the turbulence of the 1960s.  For fans of We Were the Lucky Ones and A Gentleman in Moscow, this sweeping historical novel and unexpected love story is inspired by the remarkable life of Svetlana Alliluyeva.  “The Red Daughter does exactly what good historical fiction should do: It sends you down the rabbit hole to read and learn more.” (The New York Times Book Review)  In one of the most momentous events of the Cold War, Svetlana Alliluyeva, the only daughter of the Soviet despot Joseph Stalin, abruptly abandoned her life in Moscow in 1967, arriving in New York to throngs of reporters and a nation hungry to hear her story. By her side is Peter Horvath, a young lawyer sent by the CIA to smuggle Svetlana into America. She is a contradictory celebrity: charismatic and headstrong, lonely and haunted, excited and alienated by her adopted country’s radically different society. Persuading herself that all she yearns for is a simple American life, she attempts to settle into a suburban existence in Princeton, New Jersey. But one day an invitation from the widow of the architect Frank Lloyd Wright arrives, and Svetlana impulsively joins her cultlike community at Taliesin West. When this dream ends in disillusionment, Svetlana reaches out to Peter, the one person who understands how the chains of her past still hold her prisoner. Their relationship changes and deepens, moving from America to England to the Soviet Union and back again, unfolding under the eyes of her CIA minders, and Svetlana’s and Peter’s private lives are no longer their own.  Novelist John Burnham Schwartz’s father was in fact the young lawyer who escorted Svetlana Alliluyeva to the United States. Drawing upon private papers and years of extensive research, Schwartz imaginatively re-creates the story of an extraordinary, troubled woman’s search for a new life and a place to belong, in the powerful, evocative prose that has made him an acclaimed author of literary and historical fiction. Praise for The Red Daughter “Svetlana Alliluyeva’s life was endlessly fascinating, often heartbreaking, and ultimately heroic. I don’t think any writer alive could have told her story more beautifully than John Burnham Schwartz.” (David Benioff, co-creator of HBO’s Game of Thrones and author of City of Thieves)  “The Red Daughter is an intimate, intricate look at the collision of geopolitics with a private life: surprising and engaging from beginning to end.” (Jennifer Egan)

©2019 John Burnham Schwartz (P)2019 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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Our Souls at Night

6 ratings

Summary

A spare yet eloquent, bittersweet yet inspiring story of a man and a woman who, in advanced age, come together to wrestle with the events of their lives and their hopes for the imminent future.  In the familiar setting of Holt, Colorado, home to all of Kent Haruf's inimitable fiction, Addie Moore pays an unexpected visit to a neighbor, Louis Waters. Her husband died years ago, as did his wife, and in such a small town they naturally have known of each other for decades; in fact, Addie was quite fond of Louis's wife. His daughter lives hours away in Colorado Springs, her son even farther away in Grand Junction, and Addie and Louis have long been living alone in houses now empty of family, the nights so terribly lonely, especially with no one to talk with.  Their brave adventures - their pleasures and their difficulties - are hugely involving and truly resonant, making Our Souls at Night the perfect final installment to this beloved writer's enduring contribution to American literature. 

©2015 Kent Haruf (P)2015 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Kent Haruf
Length: 3 hrs and 28 mins
Available on Audible
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Good Trouble

Summary

A masterly collection of 11 stories about the way we live now from the best-selling author of Netherland.  From bourgeois facial-hair trends to parental sleep deprivation, Joseph O’Neill closely observes the mores of his characters, whose vacillations and second thoughts expose the mysterious pettiness, underlying violence, and, sometimes, surprising beauty of ordinary life in the early 21st century. A lonely wedding guest talks to a goose; two poets struggle over whether to participate in a “pardon Edward Snowden” verse petition; a cowardly husband lets his wife face a possible intruder in their home; a potential co-op renter in New York City can’t find anyone to give him a character reference.   On the surface, these men and women may be in only mild trouble, but in these perfectly made, fiercely modern stories O’Neill reminds us of the real, secretly political consequences of our internal monologues. No writer is more incisive about the strange world we live in now; the laugh-out-loud vulnerability of his people is also fodder for tears. Cast of Narrators: "Pardon Edward Snowden" read by Robbie Daymond "The Trusted Traveler" read by Arthur Morey "The World of Cheese" read by Kimberly Farr "The Referees" read by Mike Chamberlain "Promises, Promises" read by Allyson Ryan "The Death of Billy Joel" read by Mark Deakins "Ponchos" read by Mark Bramhall "The Poltroon Husband" read by John H. Meyer "Goose" read by Mike Chamberlain "The Mustache in 2010" read by Cassandra Campbell "The Sinking of the Houston" read by Danny Campbell  

©2018 Joseph O'Neill (P)2018 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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A Call to Mercy

3 ratings

Summary

Published to coincide with Pope Francis' Year of Mercy and the Vatican's canonization of Mother Teresa, this new book of unpublished material by a humble yet remarkable woman of faith whose influence is felt as deeply today as it was when she was alive offers Mother Teresa's profound yet accessible wisdom on how we can show mercy and compassion in our day-to-day lives. For millions of people from all walks of life, Mother Teresa's canonization is providentially taking place during Pope Francis' Extraordinary Jubilee of Mercy. This is entirely fitting, since she is seen both inside and outside of the church as an icon of God's mercy to those in need. Compiled and edited by Brian Kolodiejckuk, MC, the postulator of Mother Teresa's cause for sainthood, A Call to Mercy presents deep yet accessible wisdom on how we can show compassion in our everyday lives. In her own words, Mother Teresa discusses such topics as: The need for us to visit the sick and the imprisoned The importance of honoring the dead and informing the ignorant The necessity to bear our burdens patiently and forgive willingly The purpose to feed the poor and pray for all The greatness of creating a "civilization of love" through personal service to others Featuring never before published testimonials by people close to Mother Teresa as well as prayers and suggestions for putting these ideas into practice, A Call to Mercy is not only a lovely keepsake but a living testament to the teachings of a saint whose ideas are important, relevant, and very necessary in the 21st century.

©2016 Mother Teresa (P)2016 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
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The Paris Architect

22 ratings

Summary

Like most gentiles in Nazi-occupied Paris, architect Lucien Bernard has little empathy for the Jews. So when a wealthy industrialist offers him a large sum of money to devise secret hiding places for Jews, Lucien struggles with the choice of risking his life for a cause he doesn't really believe in. Ultimately he can't resist the challenge and begins designing expertly concealed hiding spaces - behind a painting, within a column, or inside a drainpipe - detecting possibilities invisible to the average eye. But when one of his clever hiding spaces fails horribly and the immense suffering of Jews becomes incredibly personal, he can no longer deny reality. Written by an expert whose knowledge imbues every word, this story becomes more gripping with every life the architect tries to save.

©2013 Charles Belfoure (P)2013 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 10 mins
Available on Audible
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The Taking of Pelham 123

Summary

Four men seize a New York City subway train and hold its passengers hostage. Their escape would seem inconceivable. Only one thing is certain: they aren't stopping for anything.

©2009 John Godey (P)2009 Random House

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: John Godey
Length: 10 hrs and 15 mins
Available on Audible
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The Man in the Glass House

Summary

When Philip Johnson died in 2005 at the age of 98, he was still one of the most recognizable - and influential - figures on the American cultural landscape. The first recipient of the Pritzker Prize and MoMA's founding architectural curator, Johnson made his mark as one of America's leading architects with his famous Glass House in New Caanan, Connecticut, and his controversial AT&T Building in New York City, among many others in nearly every city in the country - but his most natural role was as a consummate power broker and shaper of public opinion.

Johnson introduced European modernism - the sleek, glass-and-steel architecture that now dominates our cities - to America, and mentored generations of architects, designers, and artists to follow. He defined the era of "starchitecture" with its flamboyant buildings and celebrity designers who esteemed aesthetics and style above all other concerns. But Johnson was also a man of deep paradoxes: he was a Nazi sympathizer, a designer of synagogues, an enfant terrible into his old age, a populist, and a snob. His clients ranged from the Rockefellers to televangelists to Donald Trump.

Award-winning architectural critic and biographer Mark Lamster's The Man in the Glass House lifts the veil on Johnson's controversial and endlessly contradictory life to tell the story of a charming yet deeply flawed man. A roller-coaster tale of the perils of wealth, privilege, and ambition, this book probes the dynamics of American culture that made him so powerful and tells the story of the built environment in modern America.

©2019 Mark Lamster (P)2019 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Mark Lamster
Length: 17 hrs and 19 mins
Available on Audible
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Small Moving Parts

Summary

When Harland Cain holds a .45 automatic to his head and bears down slowly upon the trigger, he experiences a profound sense of control over his destiny for the first time in his life. He savors the moment and imagines the click of the hammer, the explosion, and the bullet spiraling through the barrel before everything turns black. It's then he hears the out-of-control screaming of tires on the pavement, followed by the sickening sound of metal crashing against concrete. He lays down the pistol and crosses his yard in that predawn darkness to find a young boy, bloody and dazed, sitting behind the wheel of a demolished pickup truck. The boy, intoxicated but not hurt badly, spends the night on Cain's sofa. When he explains to the old man that he had intended to kill himself, the lives of the two become inexorably linked with consequences neither could imagine.

©2018 DB Jackson (P)2018 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 10 hrs and 57 mins
Available on Audible
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Anatomy of Injustice

Summary

From Pulitzer Prize winner Raymond Bonner comes the gripping story of a grievously mishandled murder case that put a twenty-three-year-old man on death row. In January 1982, an elderly white widow was found brutally murdered in the small town of Greenwood, South Carolina. Police immediately arrested Edward Lee Elmore, a semiliterate, mentally retarded black man with no previous felony record. His only connection to the victim was having cleaned her gutters and windows, but barely ninety days after the victim’s body was found, he was tried, convicted, and sentenced to death. Elmore had been on death row for eleven years when a young attorney named Diana Holt first learned of his case. After attending the University of Texas School of Law, Holt was eager to help the disenfranchised and voiceless - she herself had been a childhood victim of abuse. It required little scrutiny for Holt to discern that Elmore’s case reeked of injustice - plagued by incompetent court-appointed defense attorneys, a virulent prosecution, and evidence that was both misplaced and contaminated. It was the cause of a lifetime for the spirited, hardworking lawyer. Holt would spend more than a decade fighting on Elmore’s behalf. With the exemplary moral commitment and tenacious investigation that have distinguished his reporting career, Bonner follows Holt’s battle to save Elmore’s life and shows us how his case is a textbook example of what can go wrong in the American justice system. He reviews police work, evidence gathering, jury selection, work of court-appointed lawyers, latitude of judges, iniquities in the law, prison informants, and the appeals process. Throughout, the actions and motivations of both unlikely heroes and shameful villains in our justice system are vividly revealed. Moving, enraging, suspenseful, and enlightening, Anatomy of Injustice is a vital contribution to our nation’s ongoing and increasingly important debate about inequality and the death penalty.

©2012 Ramond Bonner (P)2012 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 11 hrs and 11 mins
Available on Audible
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The Longshot

Summary

Four years after Rivera knocked Cal from dominance in the sport of mixed martial arts, Cal's coach has set up a rematch. Knowing he's going to face Rivera again, Cal gets his focus and energy back. But Rivera has never lost a fight, and in the final days before the match, both Cal and his coach secretly begin to have doubts. In taut, rhythmic language, Katie Kitamura renders the urgency, discipline, and mutual affection of athlete and coach with depth and subtlety. As the excruciating tension builds around the big fight, the listener will be captivated through the final electrifying scene.

©2009 Katie Kitamura (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 4 hrs and 43 mins
Available on Audible
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Silicon

Summary

“As soon as she heard me enter, Elvia awoke from a light sleep that had overcome her as she anxiously waited: ‘How did it go?’ Excited, I exclaimed, ‘It works!’ We embraced, almost overwhelmed with feelings of euphoria and happiness, aware that something epochal had happened. On that cold January night of 1971, the world’s first microprocessor was born!” The creation of the microprocessor launched the digital age. The key technology allowing unprecedented integration, and the design of the world’s first microprocessor, the Intel 4004, were the achievement of Federico Faggin. Shrinking an entire computer onto a tiny and inexpensive piece of silicon would come to define our daily lives, imbuing myriad devices and everyday objects with computational intelligence. In Silicon, internationally recognized inventor and entrepreneur Federico Faggin chronicles his “four lives”: his formative years in war-torn Northern Italy, his pioneering work in American microelectronics, his successful career as a high-tech entrepreneur, and his more recent explorations into the mysteries of consciousness. In this heartfelt memoir, Faggin paints vivid anecdotes, walks listeners through society-changing technological breakthroughs, and shares personal insights, as each of his lives propels the next.

©2020 Federico Faggin (P)2021 Federico Faggin

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 9 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible
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Fault Lines in the Constitution

Summary

Many of the political issues we struggle with today have their roots in the US Constitution. Husband-and-wife team Cynthia and Sanford Levinson take listeners back to the creation of this historic document and discuss how contemporary problems were first introduced - then they offer possible solutions. Think Electoral College, gerrymandering, even the Senate. Many of us take these features in our system for granted. But they came about through haggling in an overheated room in 1787, and we're still experiencing the ramifications. Each chapter in this timely and thoughtful exploration of the Constitution's creation begins with a story - all but one of them true - that connects directly back to a section of the document that forms the basis of our society and government. From the award-winning team - Cynthia Levinson, children's book author, and Sanford Levinson, constitutional law scholar - Fault Lines in the Constitution will encourage exploration and discussion from young and old listeners alike. Read by Mark Bramhall, Arthur Morey, Kimberly Farr, Erin Spencer, and Adenrele Ojo.

©2017 Cynthia Levinson, Sanford Levinson (P)2017 Listening Library

Available on Audible
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Someone Builds the Dream

Summary

Buildings, bridges, and books don't exist without the workers who are often invisible in the final product, as this joyous and profound adapted-for-audio picture book reveals from acclaimed author of The Christmas Boot Lisa Wheeler and New York Times best-selling illustrator of Love Loren Long All across this great big world, jobs are getting done by many hands in many lands. It takes much more than one. This is an eye-opening exploration of the many types of work that go into building our world - from the making of a bridge to a wind farm, an amusement park, and even the books that line a library's shelves. An architect may dream up the plans for a house, but someone has to actually work the saws and pound the nails. This audiobook is a thank-you to the skilled women and men who work tirelessly to see our dreams brought to life.

©2021 Lisa Wheeler (P)2021 Listening Library

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Lisa Wheeler
Length: 6 mins
Available on Audible
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The Tarnished Eye

Summary

The New York Times best-selling author of Ordinary People crafts a gripping, character-driven novel of suspense that explores the fragile dynamics of family in the aftermath of tragedy. Taking as part of her inspiration a baffling true-life crime that has gone unsolved for more than three decades, Judith Guest achieves in this absorbing new suspense novel an extraordinary combination of page-turning mystery and intimate, emotionally charged family drama. The Tarnished Eye takes readers to the community of Blessed, in northern Michigan, and introduces us to Sheriff Hugh DeWitt, a man still grieving for his infant son, who died of SIDS a few years earlier. Meanwhile, up the road from the DeWitts, in one of the rich summer cottages, Paige Norbois grieves for a lost love of her own. Married to a stern and unresponsive man, Paige wills herself to stay in the marriage and sacrifice her own feelings for the sake of her children's stability. But when an unimaginable tragedy strikes, anyone's dreams of stability in Blessed are abruptly destroyed. Paige, her husband Edward, and their four children are found brutally slaughtered in their home. Sheriff DeWitt, deeply moved by the murder scene, must find answers to a string of troubling questions. Who was the man with whom Paige was having an affair? What about the business partner who was stealing from Edward's firm? And, above all, what sort of trauma could fuel a person's capacity for such hate-driven violence? Judith Guest, with her own untarnished eye and finely nuanced prose, delivers a powerful and poignant work of suspense fiction.

©2004 Judith Guest (P)2004 Blackstone Audiobooks

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Judith Guest
Length: 6 hrs and 9 mins
Available on Audible
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The Girl Made of Clay

Summary

An emotional exploration of the frayed bond between a father and daughter…and what it takes to mend it. After Sara’s father, famous sculptor Thomas “TR” Harlow, is badly injured in a fire, she’s suddenly forced to care for a man who is more of a stranger than a parent. Once known as his muse, Sara long ago lost her father to his desire to live the celebrity life. Now TR’s abrasive and unpredictable presence in her home is reopening old wounds - and causing the rift in her already-strained marriage to deepen. As her young son begins bonding with the grandfather he never knew, Sara must decide if she can find it within herself to forgive the man who broke her heart all those years ago. Will she walk away from a chance to rebuild what was lost, or will she find, by bringing her father back to health, that healing can come in many forms?

©2018 Nicole Meier. (P)2018 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Author: Nicole Meier
Length: 9 hrs and 35 mins
Available on Audible
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Dear American Airlines

Summary

Bennie Ford, a 53-year-old failed poet turned translator, is traveling to his estranged daughter's wedding when his flight is canceled. Stuck with thousands of fuming passengers in the purgatory of O'Hare airport, he watches the clock tick and realizes that he will miss the ceremony. Frustrated, irate, and helpless, Bennie does the only thing he can: he starts to write a letter. But what begins as a hilariously excoriating demand for a refund soon becomes the cri de coeur of a life misspent, talent wasted. Ford pens his letter in a voice that is a marvel of lacerating wit, heart-on-sleeve emotion, and wide-ranging erudition, all propelled by the fading hope that if he can just make it to the wedding, he has a chance to do something right in his life.

©2008 Jonathan Miles (P)2008 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Length: 7 hrs
Available on Audible
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A Lucky Life Interrupted

1 rating

Summary

From Tom Brokaw, the best-selling author of The Greatest Generation, comes a powerful memoir of a year of dramatic change - a year spent battling cancer and reflecting on a long, happy, and lucky life. Tom Brokaw has led a fortunate life, with a strong marriage and family, many friends, and a brilliant journalism career culminating in his 22 years as anchor of the NBC Nightly News and as best-selling author. But in the summer of 2013, when back pain led him to the doctors at the Mayo Clinic, his run of good luck was interrupted. He received shocking news: He had multiple myeloma, a treatable but incurable blood cancer. Friends had always referred to Brokaw's "lucky star", but as he writes in this inspiring memoir, "Turns out that star has a dimmer switch." Brokaw takes us through all the seasons and stages of this surprising year, the emotions, discoveries, setbacks, and struggles - times of denial, acceptance, turning points, and courage. After his diagnosis, Brokaw began to keep a journal, approaching this new stage of his life in a familiar role: as a journalist, determined to learn as much as he could about his condition, to report the story, and help others facing similar battles. That journal became the basis of this wonderfully written memoir, the story of a man coming to terms with his own mortality, contemplating what means the most to him now, and reflecting on what has meant the most to him throughout his life. Brokaw also pauses to look back on some of the important moments in his career: memories of Nelson Mandela, the Dalai Lama, the fall of the Berlin Wall, the morning of September 11, 2001, in New York City, and more. Through it all, Brokaw writes in the warm, intimate, natural voice of one of America's most beloved journalists, giving us Brokaw on Brokaw, and bringing us with him as he navigates pain, procedures, drug regimens, and physical rehabilitation.

©2015 Tom Brokaw (P)2015 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Tom Brokaw
Length: 5 hrs and 23 mins
Available on Audible
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Economism

1 rating

Summary

Here is a bracing deconstruction of the framework for understanding the world that is learned as gospel in Economics 101, regardless of its imaginary assumptions and misleading half truths. Economism: an ideology that distorts the valid principles and tools of introductory college economics, propagated by self-styled experts, zealous lobbyists, clueless politicians, and ignorant pundits. In order to illuminate the fallacies of economism, James Kwak first offers a primer on supply and demand, market equilibrium, and social welfare: the underpinnings of most popular economic arguments. Then he provides a historical account of how economism became a prevalent mode of thought in the United States - focusing on the people who packaged Econ 101 into sound bites that were then repeated until they took on the aura of truth. He shows us how issues of moment in contemporary American society - labor markets, taxes, finance, health care, and international trade, among others - are shaped by economism, demonstrating in each case with clarity and élan how, because of its failure to reflect the complexities of our world, economism has had a deleterious influence on policies that affect hundreds of millions of Americans.

©2017 James Kwak (P)2017 Random House Audio

Available on Audible
Cover art for The Last of the Tribe

The Last of the Tribe

Summary

Throughout the centuries, the Amazon has yielded many of its secrets, but it still holds a few great mysteries. In 1996 experts got their first glimpse of one: a lone Indian, a tribe of one, hidden in the forests of Southwestern Brazil. Previously uncontacted tribes are extremely rare, but a one-man tribe was unprecedented. And like all of the isolated tribes in the Amazonian frontier, he was in danger. Resentment of Indians can run high among settlers, and the consequences can be fatal. The discovery of the Indian prevented local ranchers from seizing his land and led a small group of men who believed that he was the last of a murdered tribe to dedicate themselves to protecting him. These men worked for the government, overseeing indigenous interests in an odd job that was part Indiana Jones, part social worker, and were among the most experienced adventurers in the Amazon. They were a motley crew that included a rebel who spent more than a decade living with a tribe, a young man who left home to work in the forest at age 14, and an old-school sertanista with a collection of tall tales amassed over five decades of jungle exploration. Their quest would prove far more difficult than any of them could imagine. Over the course of a decade, the struggle to save the Indian and his land would pit them against businessmen, politicians, and even the Indian himself, a man resolved to keep the outside world at bay at any cost. It would take them into the farthest reaches of the forest and to the halls of Brazil's Congress, threatening their jobs and even their lives. Ensuring the future of the Indian and his land would lead straight to the heart of the conflict over the Amazon itself. A heart-pounding modern-day adventure set in one of the world's last truly wild places, The Last of the Tribe is a riveting, brilliantly told tale of encountering the unknown and the unfathomable - and the value of preserving it.

©2016 Monte Reel (P)2016 Random House Audio

Narrator: Mark Bramhall
Author: Monte Reel
Length: 9 hrs
Available on Audible
Cover art for Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee (Dee Goong An)

Celebrated Cases of Judge Dee (Dee Goong An)

4 ratings

Summary

Long before Western writers had even conceived the idea of writing detective stories, the Chinese had developed a long tradition of literary works that chronicled the cases of important district magistrates. One of the most celebrated of these was Judge Dee, who lived in the seventh century. This book, written anonymously in the 18th century, interweaves three of Judge Dee's most baffling cases: a double murder among traveling merchants, the fatal poisoning of a bride on her wedding night, and the suspicious death of a shop keeper with a beautiful wife. The crimes take him up and down the great silk routes, into ancient graveyards where he consults the spirits of the dead, and through all levels of society, leading him to some brilliant detective work.

Public Domain (P)2009 Blackstone Audio, Inc.

Length: 7 hrs and 46 mins
Available on Audible