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Hunger: A Novella and Stories

by Lan Samantha Chang

"Spare and haunting tales that ask ordinary questions about that extraordinary emotion: love."--Chicago Tribune The novella and five stories that make up this collection reveal the lives of immigrant families haunted by lost loves: a ghost seduces a young girl into a flooded river; a mother commands a daughter to avenge her father's death; and in the title novella, a woman speaks from beyond the grave about her tragic marriage to an exiled musician whose own disappointments nearly destroyed their two daughters.

Inheritance: A Novel

by Lan Samantha Chang

A timeless story of familial devotion undermined by deceit and passion and rebuilt by memory. In 1931, abandoned after their mother's suicide, the young Junan and her sister, Yinan, make a pact never to leave each other. The two girls are inseparable--until Junan enters into an arranged marriage and finds herself falling in love with her soldier husband. When the Japanese invade China, Junan and her husband are separated. Unable to follow him to the wartime capital, Junan makes the fateful decision to send her sister after him. Inheritance traces the echo of betrayal through generations and explores the elusive nature of trust. Reading group guide included.

The Boy Who Followed Ripley

by Patricia Highsmith

"Ripley is an unmistakable descendant of Gatsby, that 'penniless young man without a past' who will stop at nothing."--Frank Rich Now part of American film and literary lore, Tom Ripley, "a bisexual psychopath and art forger who murders without remorse when his comforts are threatened" (New York Times Book Review), was Patricia Highsmith's favorite creation. In The Boy Who Followed Ripley (1980), Highsmith explores Ripley's bizarrely paternal relationship with a troubled young runaway, whose abduction draws them into Berlin's seamy underworld. More than any other American literary character, Ripley provides "a lens to peer into the sinister machinations of human behavior" (John Freeman, Pittsburgh Gazette).

Ripley Under Ground

by Patricia Highsmith

"Ripley is an unmistakable descendant of Gatsby, that 'penniless young man without a past' who will stop at nothing."--Frank Rich Now part of American film and literary lore, Tom Ripley, "a bisexual psychopath and art forger who murders without remorse when his comforts are threatened" (New York Times Book Review), was Patricia Highsmith's favorite creation. In these volumes, we find Ripley ensconced on a French estate with a wealthy wife, a world-class art collection, and a past to hide. In Ripley Under Ground (1970), an art forgery goes awry and Ripley is threatened with exposure; in The Boy Who Followed Ripley (1980), Highsmith explores Ripley's bizarrely paternal relationship with a troubled young runaway, whose abduction draws them into Berlin's seamy underworld; and in Ripley Under Water (1991), Ripley is confronted by a snooping American couple obsessed with the disappearance of an art collector who visited Ripley years before. More than any other American literary character, Ripley provides "a lens to peer into the sinister machinations of human behavior" (John Freeman, Pittsburgh Gazette).

Ripley Under Water

by Patricia Highsmith

"Ripley is an unmistakable descendant of Gatsby, that 'penniless young man without a past' who will stop at nothing."--Frank Rich Now part of American film and literary lore, Tom Ripley, "a bisexual psychopath and art forger who murders without remorse when his comforts are threatened" (New York Times Book Review), was Patricia Highsmith's favorite creation. In these volumes, we find Ripley ensconced on a French estate with a wealthy wife, a world-class art collection, and a past to hide. In Ripley Under Ground (1970), an art forgery goes awry and Ripley is threatened with exposure; in The Boy Who Followed Ripley (1980), Highsmith explores Ripley's bizarrely paternal relationship with a troubled young runaway, whose abduction draws them into Berlin's seamy underworld; and in Ripley Under Water (1991), Ripley is confronted by a snooping American couple obsessed with the disappearance of an art collector who visited Ripley years before. More than any other American literary character, Ripley provides "a lens to peer into the sinister machinations of human behavior" (John Freeman, Pittsburgh Gazette).

The Talented Mr. Ripley

by Patricia Highsmith

"Tom Ripley is one of the most interesting characters in world literature."--Anthony Minghella, director of ?The Talented Mr. Ripley Since his debut in 1955, Tom Ripley has evolved into the ultimate bad boy sociopath. Here, in this first Ripley novel, we are introduced to suave Tom Ripley, a young striver, newly arrived in the heady world of Manhattan. A product of a broken home, branded a "sissy" by his dismissive Aunt Dottie, Ripley meets a wealthy industrialist who hires him to bring his playboy son, Dickie Greenleaf, back from gallivanting in Italy. Soon Ripley's fascination with Dickie's debonair lifestyle turns obsessive as he finds himself enraged by Dickie's ambivalent affections for Marge, a charming American dilettante. A dark reworking of Henry James's ?The Ambassadors?, ?The Talented Mr. Ripley? serves as an unforgettable introduction to this smooth confidence man, whose talent for murder and self-invention is chronicled in four subsequent Ripley novels.

Ripley's Game

by Patricia Highsmith

With its sinister humor and genius plotting, Ripley's Game is an enduring portrait of a compulsive, sociopathic American antihero. Living on his posh French estate with his elegant heiress wife, Tom Ripley, on the cusp of middle age, is no longer the striving comer of The Talented Mr. Ripley. Having accrued considerable wealth through a long career of crime--forgery, extortion, serial murder--Ripley still finds his appetite unquenched and longs to get back in the game. In Ripley's Game, first published in 1974, Patricia Highsmith's classic chameleon relishes the opportunity to simultaneously repay an insult and help a friend commit a crime--and escape the doldrums of his idyllic retirement. This third novel in Highsmith's series is one of her most psychologically nuanced--particularly memorable for its dark, absurd humor--and was hailed by critics for its ability to manipulate the tropes of the genre. With the creation of Ripley, one of literature's most seductive sociopaths, Highsmith anticipated the likes of Norman Bates and Hannibal Lecter years before their appearance.

People Who Knock on the Door

by Patricia Highsmith

"Highsmith's novels are peerlessly disturbing...bad dreams that keep us thrashing for the rest of the night."--The New Yorker With the savage humor of Evelyn Waugh and the macabre sensibility of Edgar Allan Poe, Patricia Highsmith brought a distinct twentieth-century acuteness to her prolific body of fiction. In her more than twenty novels, psychopaths lie in wait amid the milieu of the mundane, in the neighbor clipping the hedges or the spouse asleep next to you at night. Now, Norton continues the revival of this noir genius with another of her lost masterpieces: a later work from 1983, People Who Knock on the Door, is a tale about blind faith and the slippery notion of justice that lies beneath the peculiarly American veneer of righteousness. This novel, out of print for years, again attests to Highsmith's reputation as "the poet of apprehension" (Graham Greene).

Strangers on a Train

by Patricia Highsmith

"For eliciting the menace that lurks in familiar surroundings, there's no one like Patricia Highsmith." --Time The world of Patricia Highsmith has always been filled with ordinary people, all of whom are capable of very ordinary crimes. This theme was present from the beginning, when her debut, Strangers on a Train, galvanized the reading public. Here we encounter Guy Haines and Charles Anthony Bruno, passengers on the same train. But while Guy is a successful architect in the midst of a divorce, Bruno turns out to be a sadistic psychopath who manipulates Guy into swapping murders with him. "Some people are better off dead," Bruno remarks, "like your wife and my father, for instance." As Bruno carries out his twisted plan, Guy is trapped in Highsmith's perilous world, where, under the right circumstances, anybody is capable of murder. The inspiration for Alfred Hitchcock's classic 1951 film, Strangers on a Train launched Highsmith on a prolific career of noir fiction, proving her a master at depicting the unsettling forces that tremble beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life.

A Suspension of Mercy

by Patricia Highsmith

A major new reissue of the work of a classic noir novelist. With the acclaim for The Talented Mr. Ripley, more film projects in production, and two biographies forthcoming, expatriate legend Patricia Highsmith would be shocked to see that she has finally arrived in her homeland. Throughout her career, Highsmith brought a keen literary eye and a genius for plumbing the psychopathic mind to more than thirty works of fiction, unparalleled in their placid deviousness and sardonic humor. With deadpan accuracy, she delighted in creating true sociopaths in the guise of the everyday man or woman. Now, one of her finest works is again in print: A Suspension of Mercy, a masterpiece of noir fantasy. With this novel, Highsmith revels in eliciting the unsettling psychological forces that lurk beneath the surface of everyday contemporary life. "For eliciting the menace that lurks in familiar surroundings, there's no one like Patricia Highsmith."--Time "Highsmith's novels are peerlessly disturbing ....bad dreams that keep us thrashing for the rest of the night."--The New Yorker

Dear Mrs. Lindbergh: A Novel

by Kathleen Hughes

"A compassionate exploration of a woman's life--between motherhood and dreaming, living the everyday and taking flight."--Jane Mendelsohn, author of I Was Amelia Earhart When two elderly Iowans, Ruth and Henry Gutterson, disappear mysteriously on their way home from Thanksgiving, their adult children find a crate of Ruth's letters written to Anne Morrow Lindbergh. In the letters the children read of the origins of their parents' passion: how they first met in 1924 when Henry crashed his Air Mail plane into Ruth's family's cornfield; how Ruth flew alongside Henry as his navigator; about Ruth's passion for flying; and how the birth of her children kept her on the ground.

True North: Peary, Cook, and the Race to the Pole

by Bruce Henderson

"Nail-biting true adventure."--Kirkus Reviews In 1909, two men laid rival claims to this crown jewel of exploration. A century later, the battle rages still. This book is about one of the most enduring and vitriolic feuds in the history of exploration. "What a consummate cur he is," said Robert Peary of Frederick Cook in 1911. Cook responded, "Peary has stooped to every crime from rape to murder." They had started out as friends and shipmates, with Cook, a doctor, accompanying Peary, a civil engineer, on an expedition to northern Greenland in 1891. Peary's leg was shattered in an accident, and without Cook's care he might never have walked again. But by the summer of 1909, all the goodwill was gone. Peary said he had reached the Pole in September 1909; Cook scooped him, presenting evidence that he had gotten there in 1908. Bruce Henderson makes a wonderful narrative out of the claims and counterclaims, and he introduces fascinating scientific and psychological evidence to put the appalling details of polar travel in a new context.

The Illicit Happiness of Other People: A Novel

by Manu Joseph

A quirky and darkly comic take on domestic life in southern India. Ousep Chacko, journalist and failed novelist, prides himself on being "the last of the real men." This includes waking neighbors upon returning late from the pub. His wife Mariamma stretches their money, raises their two boys, and, in her spare time, gleefully fantasizes about Ousep dying. One day, their seemingly happy seventeen-year-old son Unni--an obsessed comic-book artist--falls from the balcony, leaving them to wonder whether it was an accident. Three years later, Ousep receives a package that sends him searching for the answer, hounding his son's former friends, attending a cartoonists' meeting, and even accosting a famous neurosurgeon. Meanwhile, younger son Thoma, missing his brother, falls head over heels for the much older girl who befriended them both. Haughty and beautiful, she has her own secrets. The Illicit Happiness of Other People--a smart, wry, and poignant novel--teases you with its mystery, philosophy, and unlikely love story.

The Reenactments: A Memoir

by Nick Flynn

A literary tour de force about the making of a film and representation from a master of the memoir form. For Nick Flynn, that game we all play--the who-would-play-you-in-the-movie-of-your-life game--has been resolved. The Reenactments chronicles the surreal experience of being on set during the making of the film Being Flynn, from his best-selling memoir Another Bullshit Night in Suck City, and watching the central events of his life reenacted: his father's long run of homelessness and his mother's suicide. Flynn tells the story of Robert De Niro's first meeting with his real father in Boston and of watching Julianne Moore attempt to throw herself into the sea. The result is a mesmerizingly sharp-edged and kaleidoscopic literary tour de force as well as a compelling argument about consciousness, representation, and grief.

Will Oldham on Bonnie "Prince" Billy

by Alan Licht Will Oldham

A captivating and revelatory glimpse into the life of one of the most critically acclaimed and enigmatic musicians working today. The man who acts under the name Will Oldham and sings and composes under the name Bonnie "Prince" Billy has, over the past quarter-century, made an idiosyncratic journey through, and an indelible mark on, the worlds of indie rock and independent cinema. These conversations with longtime friend and associate Alan Licht probe his highly individualistic approach to music making and the music industry, one that cherishes intimacy, community, mystery, and spontaneity. Exploring Oldham's travels and artistic influences while discussing his experiences with such disparate figures as Johnny Cash, Bjork, James Earl Jones, and R. Kelly, the book conveys the brilliance that has captivated fans and made Oldham one of our most influential and beloved songsmiths. Oldham has declared this book his "last interview"--an essential guide to his life and career. Featuring a full discography, it offers the most in-depth look we may ever get of this fascinating cult figure.

Would You Eat Your Cat?: Key Ethical Conundrums and What They Tell You About Yourself

by Jeremy Stangroom

Are you authoritarian or libertarian? Are we morally obligated to end the world? And just what's wrong with eating your cat? Would You Eat Your Cat? challenges you to examine these and many other philosophical questions. This unique collection of classic and modern problems and paradoxes is guaranteed to test your preconceptions. Jeremy Stangroom creates contemporary versions of famous dilemmas that explore the morality of suicide and the ethics of retribution. He then delves into the background of each conundrum in detail and helps you discover what your responses reveal about yourself with a unique morality barometer. Are you ready to have your best ideas confronted and your ethical foundations shaken? If so, then Would You Eat Your Cat? is the book for you.

The Mission: Waging War and Keeping Peace with America's Military

by Dana Priest

Walk with America's generals, grunts, and Green Berets through the maze of unconventional wars and unsettled peace. Four-star generals who lead the military during wartime reign like proconsuls abroad in peacetime. Secretive Green Berets trained to hunt down terrorists are assigned to seduce ruthless authoritarian regimes. Pimply young soldiers taught to seize airstrips instead play mayor, detective, and social worker in a gung-ho but ill-fated attempt to rebuild a nation after the fighting stops. The Mission is a boots-on-the-ground account of America's growing dependence on our military to manage world affairs, describing a clash of culture and purpose through the eyes of soldiers and officers themselves. With unparalleled access to all levels of the military, Dana Priest traveled to eighteen countries--including Uzbekistan, Colombia, Kosovo, Indonesia, Nigeria, and Afghanistan--talking to generals, admirals, Special Forces A-teams, and infantry troops. Blending Ernie Pyle's worm's-eye view with David Halberstam's altitude, this book documents an historic and thought-provoking trend, one even more significant in the aftermath of September 11 as the country turns to its warriors to solve the complex international challenges ahead.

At Day's Close: Night in Times Past

by A. Roger Ekirch

"Remarkable....Ekirch has emptied night's pockets, and laid the contents out before us."--Arthur Krystal, The New Yorker Bringing light to the shadows of history through a "rich weave of citation and archival evidence" (Publishers Weekly), scholar A. Roger Ekirch illuminates the aspects of life most often overlooked by other historians--those that unfold at night. In this "triumph of social history" (Mail on Sunday), Ekirch's "enthralling anthropology" (Harper's) exposes the nightlife that spawned a distinct culture and a refuge from daily life. Fear of crime, of fire, and of the supernatural; the importance of moonlight; the increased incidence of sickness and death at night; evening gatherings to spin wool and stories; masqued balls; inns, taverns, and brothels; the strategies of thieves, assassins, and conspirators; the protective uses of incantations, meditations, and prayers; the nature of our predecessors' sleep and dreams--Ekirch reveals all these and more in his "monumental study" (The Nation) of sociocultural history, "maintaining throughout an infectious sense of wonder" (Booklist).

The Legacy of Chernobyl

by Zhores Medvedev

"A damning history of the Chernobyl affair, from its origins in the plant's primitive design and careless management to the economic and political crisis the accident precipitated." --Clenn Garelik, New York Times Book Review On the morning of April 26, 1986, a Soviet nuclear plant at Chernobyl (near Kiev) exploded, pouring radioactivity into the environment and setting off the worst disaster in the history of nuclear energy. Now a former Soviet scientist gives a comprehensive account of the catastrophe.

Glory Denied: The Vietnam Saga of Jim Thompson, America's Longest-Held Prisoner of War

by John Mccain Tom Philpott

Now hailed as a classic, one of the most unforgettable and heartbreaking books ever written about the Vietnam War. Glory Denied--the harrowing story of America's longest-held POW, the wrenching agonies faced by his family, and the larger story of a nation divided--returns to Norton a decade after its much-heralded publication. Excerpted in The New Yorker and later made into an opera, it is the heroic story of Floyd "Jim" Thompson, captured in March 1964, who became the longest-held prisoner of war in American history. Tom Philpott juxtaposes Thompson's capture, torture, and multiple escape attempts with the trials of his young wife, Alyce, who, feeling trapped, made choices that forever tied her fate to the war she despised. "One of the most honest books ever written about Vietnam" (Oliver Stone), Glory Denied demands that we rethink the definition of a true American hero.

A Rage to Live: A Biography of Richard and Isabel Burton

by Mary S. Lovell

An "extraordinary biography" (New York Times Book Review) of a brilliant pair of adventurers. Their marriage was both improbable and inevitable. Isabel Arundell was a schoolgirl, the scion of England's most distinguished Catholic family. When she first saw him while walking at a seaside resort, Richard Burton had already made his mark as a linguist (he was fluent in twenty-nine languages), scholar, soldier, and explorer--at once a symbol of Victorian England's vision of empire and an avowed rebel against its mores. When she turned and saw him staring after her, she decided that she would marry him. By their next meeting, Burton had become the first infidel to infiltrate Mecca as one of the faithful, and, in an expedition to discover the source of the Nile, would soon be the first white man to see Lake Tanganyika. After being married, the Burtons traveled and experienced the world, from diplomatic postings in Brazil and Africa to hair-raising adventures in the Syrian desert. In later life Richard courted further controversy as a self-proclaimed erotologist and the translator of The Kama Sutra. Based on previously unavailable archives, Mary Lovell has written a compelling joint biography that sets Isabel in her proper place as Burton's equal in daring and endurance, a fascinating figure in her own right.

A River Lost: The Life and Death of the Columbia (Revised and Updated)

by Blaine Harden

"Superbly reported and written with clarity, insight, and great skill." --Washington Post Book World After two decades, Washington Post journalist Blaine Harden returned to his small-town birthplace in the Pacific Northwest to follow the rise and fall of the West's most thoroughly conquered river. To explore the Columbia River and befriend those who collaborated in its destruction, he traveled on a monstrous freight barge sailing west from Idaho to the Grand Coulee Dam, the site of the river's harnessing for the sake of jobs, electricity, and irrigation. A River Lost is a searing personal narrative of rediscovery joined with a narrative of exploitation: of Native Americans, of endangered salmon, of nuclear waste, and of a once-wild river. Updated throughout, this edition features a new foreword and afterword.

The Blackest Bird: A Novel of Murder in Nineteenth-Century New York

by Joel Rose

"Irresistibly seductive. ... Murder mystery, historical novel, portal to another time; The Blackest Bird is a masterpiece."--Anthony Bourdain In the sweltering summer of 1841, Mary Rogers, a popular tobacco shop counter girl, is found brutally murdered in the shallows of the Hudson River. John Colt, scion of the firearm fortune, beats his publisher to death with a hatchet. And young Irish gang leader Tommy Coleman is accused of killing his daughter, wife, and her former lover. Charged with solving it all is High Constable Jacob Hays, whose investigation will span a decade, involving gang wars, grave robbers, and clues hidden in poems by the hopeless romantic and minstrel of the night, Edgar Allan Poe.

Hussein: An Entertainment

by Patrick O'Brian

A glittering adventure set in India at the height of the British Raj. The New York Times compared this book to Kipling's Kim and called it "a gorgeous entertainment." Of this early work, published when he was in his early twenties, Patrick O'Brian writes in a foreword: "In the writing of the book I learnt the rudiments of my calling: but more than that, it opened a well of joy that has not yet run dry." The story is about a young mahout--or elephant handler--his childhood and life in India, and his relationship and adventures with elephants. As a boy, Hussein falls in love with a beautiful and elusive girl, Sashiya, and arranges for another of her suitors to be murdered with a fakir's curse. The dead man's relatives vow vengeance. Hussein escapes and his adventures begin: snake-charming, sword-fighting, spying, stealing a fortune, and returning triumphantly to claim his bride. All of this is set against an evocatively exotic India, full of bazaars, temples, and beautiful women--despite the fact that O'Brian had never been to the East when he wrote the story.

Caesar: The Life Story of a Panda-Leopard

by Patrick O'Brian

"O'Brian was only 15 when [Caesar] was published, but he already possessed an instinct for deft plotting and uncomplicated narrative."--The New York Times A stark tale encompassing the cruelty and beauty of the natural world, and a clear demonstration of the storytelling gift that would later flower in the Aubrey/Maturin series. When he was fourteen years old and beset by chronic ill health, Patrick O'Brian began creating his first fictional character. "I did it in my bedroom, and a little when I should have been doing my homework," he confessed in a note on the original dust-jacket. Caesar tells the picaresque, enchanting, and quite bloodthirsty story of a creature whose father is a giant panda and whose mother is a snow leopard. Through the eyes and voice of this fabulous creature, we learn of his life as a cub, his first hunting exploits, his first encounters with man, his capture and taming. Caesar was published in 1930, three months after O'Brian's fifteenth birthday, but the dry wit and unsentimental precision O'Brian readers savor in the Aubrey/Maturin series is already in evidence. The book combines Stephen Maturin's fascination and encyclopedic knowledge of natural history with the narrative charm of Rudyard Kipling's The Jungle Book. It was published in England and the United States, and in translation in Sweden, Norway, Denmark, and Japan. Reviews hailed the author as the "boy-Thoreau." "We can see here a true storyteller in the making....a gripping narrative, which holds the reader's attention and never flags."--The Spectator

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