At eighteen years, old Karl Ove moves to a tiny fisherman's village in the far north of the arctic circle to work as a school teacher. No interest in the job itself, his intention is to save up enough money to travel while finding the space and time to start his writing career. Initially everything looks fine. He writes his first few short stories, finds himself accepted by the hospitable locals, and receives flattering attention from several beautiful local girls. But as the darkness of the long arctic nights start to consume the landscape, Karl Ove's life takes a darker turn. His writing repeats itself, his drinking escalates to some disturbing blackouts, his attempts at losing his virginity end in humiliation and shame, and to his distress, he also develops romantic feelings towards one of his students. Along the way, there are flashbacks to his high school years and the roots of his current problems. Ever present is the long shadow cast by his father, whose own sharply increasing alcohol consumption serves as an ominous backdrop to the author's lifestlye.
Bill Reed manages a wildlife sanctuary in rural Idaho, caring for injured animals raptors, a wolf, and his beloved bear, Majer, among them that are unable to survive in the wild. Seemingly rid of his troubled past, Bill hopes to marry the local veterinarian and live a quiet life together, the promise of which is threatened when a childhood friend is released from prison. Suddenly forced to confront the secrets of his criminal youth, Bill battles fiercely to preserve the shelter that protects these wounded animals and to keep hidden his turbulent, even dangerous, history. Alternating between past and present, Christian Kiefer contrasts the wreckage of Bill's crime-ridden years in Reno, Nevada, with the elusive promise of a peaceful future. In finely sculpted prose imaginatively at odds with the harsh, volatile world Kiefer evokes, The Animals builds powerfully toward the revelation of Bill's defining betrayal and the drastic lengths Bill goes to in order to escape the consequences.
From one of the most critically acclaimed and beloved storytellers of our time comes a major new collection of stories and verse "We each have our little triggers . . . things that wait for us in the dark corridors of our lives." So says Neil Gaiman in his introduction to Trigger Warning, a remarkable compendium of twenty-five stories and poems that explore the transformative power of imagination.
New York Times bestselling author Joyce Carol Oates returns with an incendiary novel that illuminates the tragic impact of sexual violence, racism, brutality, and power on innocent lives and probes the persistence of stereotypes, the nature of revenge, the complexities of truth, and our insatiable hunger for sensationalism
A woman creeps through the ductwork of a quiet home. A medical procedure reveals an object of worship. A carnivorous reptile divides and cauterizes a town. Amelia Gray's curio cabinet expands in "Gutshot," where isolation and coupling are pushed to their dark and outrageous edges. A master of the macabre, Gray's work is not for the faint of heart or gut: lick at your own risk.
"Perhaps the finest and most unsentimental love story of the new decade." -The New York Times
"As bold and urgent a love story as you'll read this year." -Wall Street Journal
"A sledgehammer to the American dream." -Kirkus Reviews
"In a return to the bighearted storytelling that made him a star NPR correspondent, Simon] pays full tribute to the ex-showgirl who...taught her only son to be honest, kind, and entertaining. Be assured, tears will fall."--"People Magazine"
"In his poignant, funny, intimate memoir of his last days with his mother], Simon reflects on... the preciousness that death gives to life and the endless resonance of love."--Laura Hillenbrand, author of UNBROKEN
"Signs Preceding the End of the World" is one of the most arresting novels to be published in Spanish in the last ten years. Yuri Herrera does not simply write about the border between Mexico and the United States and those who cross it. He explores the crossings and translations people make in their minds and language as they move from one country to another, especially when there's no going back.
Traversing this lonely territory is Makina, a young woman who knows only too well how to survive in a violent, macho world. Leaving behind her life in Mexico to search for her brother, she is smuggled into the USA carrying a pair of secret messages - one from her mother and one from the Mexican underworld.
Donna Leon's "Death at La Fenice," the first novel in her beloved Commissario Guido Brunetti series, introduced readers to the glamorous and cutthroat world of opera and one of Italy's finest living sopranos, Flavia Petrelli--then a suspect in the poisoning of a renowned German conductor. Years after Brunetti cleared her name, Flavia has returned to Venice and La Fenice to sing the lead in "Tosca."
Brunetti and his wife, Paola, attend an early performance, and Flavia receives a standing ovation. Back in her dressing room, she finds bouquets of yellow roses--too many roses. Every surface of the room is covered with them. An anonymous fan has been showering Flavia with these beautiful gifts in London, St. Petersburg, Amsterdam, and now, Venice, but she no longer feels flattered. A few nights later, invited by Brunetti to dine at his in-laws' palazzo, Flavia confesses her alarm at these excessive displays of adoration. And when a talented young Venetian singer who has caught Flavia's attention is savagely attacked, Brunetti begins to think that Flavia's fears are justified in ways neither of them imagined. He must enter in the psyche of an obsessive fan before Flavia, or anyone else, comes to harm.
"Big, beautiful, ambitious... It takes narrative magic to pull off such a loopy combination, and luckily, Reif Larsen has it to spare. His prose is addictive and enchanting." --"The Los Angeles Times"
"Larsen's is an extraordinarily lush and verdant imagination, blooming wildly on the borders of the absurd and the riotous, the surreal and the ordinary...Quite unlike any novel] I've read in a long time. One doesn't consume it; one enters it, as part of a literary enactment... Brilliant...The effort is well-rewarded: It is both maddening and marvelous...I can't wait to see what he pulls off next."
"The New York Times Book Review"
The incomparable Jonathan Lethem returns with nine stories that demonstrate his mastery of the short form.
Jonathan Lethem's third collection of stories uncovers a father's nervous breakdown at SeaWorld in "Pending Vegan"; a foundling child rescued from the woods during a blizzard in "Traveler Home"; a political prisoner in a hole in a Brooklyn street in "Procedure in Plain Air"; and a crumbling, haunted "blog" on a seaside cliff in "The Dreaming Jaw, The Salivating Ear." Each of these locates itself in Lethem-land, which can be discovered only by visiting. As in his celebrated novels, Lethem finds the uncanny lurking in the mundane, the irrational self-defeat seeping through our upstanding pursuits, and the tragic undertow of the absurd world(s) in which we live.
Devoted fans of Lethem will recognize familiar themes: the anxiety of influence taken to reductio ad absurdum in "The King of Sentences"; a hapless, horny outsider summoning bravado in "The Porn Critic"; characters from forgotten comics stranded on a desert island in "Their Back Pages." As always in Lethem, humor and poignancy work in harmony, humans strive desperately for connection, words find themselves misaligned to deeds, and the sentences are glorious.
Jim Harrison is one of our most renowned and popular authors, and his last novel, "The Great Leader," was one of the most successful in a decorated career: it appeared on the "New York Times" extended bestseller list, and was a national bestseller with rapturous reviews. His darkly comic follow-up, "The Big Seven," sends Detective Sunderson to confront his new neighbors, a gun-nut family who live outside the law in rural Michigan.
Detective Sunderson has fled troubles on the home front and bought himself a hunting cabin in a remote area of Michigan's Upper Peninsula. No sooner has he settled in than he realizes his new neighbors are creating even more havoc than the Great Leader did. A family of outlaws, armed to the teeth, the Ameses have local law enforcement too intimidated to take them on. Then Sunderson's cleaning lady, a comely young Ames woman, is murdered, and black sheep brother Lemuel Ames seeks Sunderson's advice on a crime novel he's writing which may not be fiction. Sunderson must struggle with the evil within himself and the far greater, more expansive evil of his neighbor.
In a story shot through with wit, bedlam, and Sunderson's attempts to enumerate and master the seven deadly sins, "The Big Seven" is a superb reminder of why Jim Harrison is one of America's most irrepressible writers.
The extraordinary #1 New York Times bestseller that has captivated over 1 million readers now also includes the bestselling short story The Julian Chapter.
I won't describe what I look like. Whatever you're thinking, it's probably worse.
August Pullman was born with a facial difference that, up until now, has prevented him from going to a mainstream school. Starting 5th grade at Beecher Prep, he wants nothing more than to be treated as an ordinary kid—but his new classmates can’t get past Auggie’s extraordinary face. WONDER, now a #1 New York Times bestseller and included on the Texas Bluebonnet Award master list, begins from Auggie’s point of view, but soon switches to include his classmates, his sister, her boyfriend, and others. These perspectives converge in a portrait of one community’s struggle with empathy, compassion, and acceptance.
"Wonder is the best kids' book of the year," said Emily Bazelon, senior editor at Slate.com and author of Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy. In a world where bullying among young people is an epidemic, this is a refreshing new narrative full of heart and hope. R.J. Palacio has called her debut novel “a meditation on kindness” —indeed, every reader will come away with a greater appreciation for the simple courage of friendship. Auggie is a hero to root for, a diamond in the rough who proves that you can’t blend in when you were born to stand out.
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