Narrator

Richard Powers

Richard Powers
  • This dynamic examination traces the lives of two of the most influential figures and their dueling approaches on America’s natural landscape.

    John Muir, the most famous naturalist in American history, protected Yosemite, cofounded the Sierra Club, and is sometimes called the Father of the National Parks. A poor immigrant, self-taught, individualistic, and skeptical of institutions, he had an idealistic belief in the spiritual benefits of holistic natural systems that led him to a philosophy of preserving wilderness unimpaired.

    Gifford Pinchot founded the US Forest Service and advised his friend Theodore Roosevelt on environmental policy. Raised in wealth, educated in privilege, and interested in how institutions and community can overcome failures in individual virtue, Pinchot’s pragmatic belief in professional management led him to a philosophy of sustainably conserving natural resources.

    When these rivaling perspectives meet, what happens? For decades, the story of their relationship has been told as a split between the conservation and preservation philosophies, sparked by a proposal to dam a remote Yosemite valley called Hetch Hetchy. But a decade before that argument, Muir and Pinchot camped together alongside Montana’s jewel-like Lake McDonald in what was at the heart of a region not yet consecrated as Glacier National Park.

    At stake in 1896 was the new idea that some landscapes should be collectively, permanently owned by a democratic government. Although many people today think of public lands as an American birthright, their very existence was then in doubt and dependent on a merger of the talents of these two men. Natural Rivals examines a time of environmental threat and political dysfunction not unlike our own and reveals the complex dynamic that gave birth to America’s rich public lands legacy.

  • This is A Madman’s Diary, and Other Stories by Lu Xun, a renowned writer of modern Chinese literature. Lu Xun was a novelist, editor, translator, literary critic, essayist, and poet who wrote both in Vernacular Chinese and Classical Chinese. He became the titular head of the League of Left-Wing Writers in Shanghai in the 1930s.

  • The Triumph of the Egg is a fictional panorama of a great region of our country, unfolded by a writer who—to quote the New York Times—“depicts life in the Midwest as Dostoevsky pictured the many colored life of Russia, with almost as wonderful a touch of genius, with a more concentrated and daring skill.”

    This coveted 1921 collection is an example of what a book of stories can be when a writer of vision deals with the materials of American life.

  • Deep Conviction features four ordinary Americans who put their reputations and livelihoods at risk as they fought to protect their first amendment right to live their personal beliefs. Though these individuals couldn’t be more different, they share a similar conviction and determination, and the principles of religious freedom apply equally to all of them.

    In 1813, a Catholic priest in New York City faced prison after a grand jury subpoenaed him for refusing to divulge the identity of a jewelry thief who admitted to the crime during the sacrament of confession.

    In 1959, an atheist in Maryland was forced to choose between his job and his beliefs when the state required him, as part of the hiring process, to sign an oath that said he believed in God. The United States Supreme Court would decide his fate.

    In 1989, a Klamath Indian man walked into the highest court of our nation to fight for the right to practice the central sacrament of the Native American church after the state of Oregon had declared it illegal.

    And, finally, in 2017, a Christian baker and a gay couple took their case to the United States Supreme Court after the baker declined to create a custom wedding cake to celebrate the couple’s same-sex marriage, fearing it would violate his duty to God.

    Chosen for their universality and for the broad principles they represent, these true stories reflect the diversity of beliefs in the United States, the conflicts between religious freedom and other interests, the perils individuals face when their right to live their beliefs is threatened, and the genius of America’s promise of religious liberty for all.

  • Many people mistakenly believe that investing in real estate needs to be left to the professionals and property moguls. But the truth is anyone can build wealth by investing in real estate. The trick to becoming a successful investor? Getting a solid grasp on the basics.

    Real Estate Investing for Beginners gives you insight into how to successfully evaluate, buy, and maintain investment properties with confidence. It prepares you to invest confidently with

    • the top ten questions you should ask yourself before investing;
    • the pros, cons, and characteristics for the five main types of real estate investments;
    • the difference between investing in stocks versus investing in real estate; and
    • a full glossary to sharpen your financial vocabulary.

    Real Estate Investing for Beginners gives you the right set of tools to build the lifelong wealth and financial security you want. Now, time to get learning and earning.

  • A housewife takes up bodybuilding and sees radical changes to her physique―which her workaholic husband fails to notice. A boy waits at a bus stop, mocking businessmen struggling to keep their umbrellas open in a typhoon―until an old man shows him that they hold the secret to flying. A woman working in a clothing boutique waits endlessly on a customer who won’t come out of the fitting room―and who may or may not be human. A newlywed notices that her husband’s features are beginning to slide around his face―to match her own.

    In these eleven stories, the individuals who lift the curtains of their orderly homes and workplaces are confronted with the bizarre, the grotesque, the fantastic, the alien―and, through it, find a way to liberation. The Lonesome Bodybuilder is the English-language debut of one of Japan’s most fearlessly inventive young writers.

  • This new edition of Microcosm’s popular DIY guide to zine making is updated to address zine making in today’s digital-and-social-media-obsessed world. Covering all the bases for beginners, Make a Zine hits on more advanced topics like Creative Commons licenses, legality, and sustainability.

    Make a Zine also takes a look at the burgeoning indie comix scene with a solid and comprehensive chapter by punk illustrator Fly. Part history lesson, part how-to guide, Make a Zine is a call to arms, an ecstatic, positive rally cry in the face of TV show book clubs and bestsellers by celebrity chefs. As says Biel in the book’s intro, “Let’s go!”

  • Looking for something filled with fun facts and trivia questions and answers? Answers to Questions You’ve Never Asked will entertain you for hours.

    When you take the most absurd parts of history, science, economics, and geography, you end up with a pretty confusing picture of humanity. Why do we have borders? What’s the furthest you can get from the ocean? How do you qualify as a country? And why did Vikings wear those silly helmets? These are just a few of the strange questions that bounce around the head of Joseph Pisenti.

    In his YouTube channel, Pisenti presents illogical truths in a logical manner. Here, he builds on this nonsensical humor of the universe with in-depth analyses of empires, economies, and ecosystems as he helps answer the ridiculous. Why, you ask? Because someone has to! Pisenti not only details the absurd but also provides explanations on why things are—and why they aren’t. The following are just a few of the many questions answered here:

    • Where can I move to so that I’m never tempted by McDonalds again?
    • How far into the Pacific does Trump’s wall stretch?
    • If Plato came back to life, what would he think of modern democracy?
    • Why do all empires fail?
    • Who decides what countries are allowed to participate in the Olympics?
    • What makes Finland so great?

    Witty, thought-provoking, and occasionally snarky, Answers to Questions You’ve Never Asked is for anyone who beams with curiosity and has a belly button.

  • From the mind of the man Stephen King calls “a master of the macabre,” comes a brilliant new collection of no-punches-pulled horror stories, some never before collected and many originals that have never been published anywhere before. Bentley Little can take the innocuous, twist it around, and write a story that will change your way of thinking. Walking Alone: Short Stories is a shining example of his talent to scare you, creep you out, and make you shudder.

  • Learn how to get out of debt from an expert. Forbes calls David Carlson’s personal finance blog Young Adult Money “a must-read for millennials.”

    Hustle Away Debt, Carlson’s new book, gives millennials drowning in debt—student and otherwise—a lifeline. He introduces the concept of “side hustles,” so you can develop new sources of income that allow you to pay off debt faster. He also shows how this can lead you to explore new fields you might not have otherwise worked in and how you can pick up useful skills for your full-time job—all while developing your earning potential to the fullest.

    In Hustle Away Debt, you will learn what it is like to enjoy debt-free living, how to save more and get ahead faster, what it takes to seize control of your money, how to get out of debt once and for all, how to eliminate student debt, and more!

  • Are you ready to have kids? More and more gay men are turning to adoption and surrogacy to start their own families. An estimated two million American LBGTQ people would like to adopt and an estimated 65,000 adopted children are living with a gay parent. In 2016, the Chicago Tribune reported that ten to twenty percent of donor eggs went to gay men expanding their families via surrogacy, and in many places the numbers were up fifty percent from the previous five years.

    Having a kid is like coming out all over again, on a daily basis, especially if you have an infant. Was coming out stressful for you? It’s about to get more intense and you will have a child watching your every move and listening to your every word. If you stutter or pause, they may pick up on your discomfort and could start to feel like something is wrong about their family unit. The Ultimate Guide for Gay Dads is jam-packed with parenting tips and advice to help you build confidence and become the awesome gay dad you were meant to be!

    Unlike other parenting books that have whole chapters focusing on things specifically related to mothers (such as how to get the perfect latch when breastfeeding), this parenting book replaces those sections with things relevant to gay dads. It covers topics like how to find LGBT-friendly pediatricians, how to find LGBT-friendly schools, how to childproof your home with style, how to answer awkward and prying questions about your family from strangers, examples for what two-dad families can do on Mother’s Day, and much more. The book also includes parenting tips and advice from pediatricians, school educators, lawyers, and other same-sex parents.

    Bestselling author Eric Rosswood covers every aspect of fatherhood for gay men in this essential guide to growing your family in the post-DOMA era.

  • In 1991, flight attendant Nancy Ludwig checked in to an airport hotel near Detroit. The next morning she was found gagged, raped, and tortured—her throat slit with such rage that she was nearly decapitated. Her husband Arthur never gave up hope that the future would bring enough evidence to close the case. But it was the past that held the clue.

    In 1985, fifty-five-year-old Margarette Eby, a music professor, met the same grisly death at her cottage in Flint, Michigan. The case went cold—until six years later when the victim’s son Mark came upon the story of Nancy Ludwig’s slaying. With nothing to go on but intuition, he called authorities, certain that the same fiend committed both crimes.

    A cunning sting operation yielded irrefutable DNA evidence, and authorities were led to the home of respected navy veteran Jeffrey Gorton living quietly with his wife and two children. But his cold-blooded secrets were only beginning to come to light, leaving fears that there were more victims yet to be found in a killing spree that had finally come to an end. Blood Justice shows veteran reporter and author Tom Henderson at the top of his game.

  • In Washington Township, Michigan, on Valentine’s Day, 2007, Stephen Grant filed a missing persons report on his beloved wife, Tara. The stay-at-home father of two was beside himself with despair. Why would Tara abandon him and their family? Was she involved with another man?

    Stephen’s frantic, emotional search for Tara made national headlines, and the case was featured on Dateline among other television shows and news outlets. But key elements in Stephen’s story still weren’t adding up: Why did he wait five days to go to police? What was the nature of his relationship with his children’s beautiful, nineteen-year-old babysitter? Why did Stephen have cuts on his hands, and random bruises? Then, the police made a gruesome discovery.

    Parts of Tara Grant’s body started turning up around the woods near their home. The truth was finally coming to light … and, after a two-day manhunt, Stephen admitted to having killed Tara―first strangling her, then cutting her body into fourteen pieces before burying them. This is the shocking true story about a bitter, cheating husband whose crimes were revealed by the Blood in the Snow.

  • A promising young attorney and a dedicated family man, Michael Fletcher seemed to have it all. But in the summer of 2000, Michael found himself standing trial for the murder of his pregnant wife, Leann. The verdict—guilty of second-degree murder—would leave friends, family, and the public at large scrambling to make sense of a twisted and frightening series of events that ended in the brutal killing of Leann Fletcher. What could possibly have led Michael Fletcher to commit such a gruesome act?

    As a college student, Michael Fletcher married the girl of his dreams after a three-year courtship. It seems like a fairy-tale romance come true: a match made in heaven. So why would a man with no history of domestic violence murder his devoted wife right after he told her how much he loved her? Why would Michael shoot Leann in the back of the head, not only killing her but also the child that she was carrying inside her? According to prosecutors, Fletcher has been involved in an extramarital affair with a beautiful judge for two years. Was his relationship with respected District Judge Susan Chrzanowski enough cause for him to murder his wife in cold blood? Raising even more troubling questions, the startling discovery colored Leann’s already shocking murder with shadings of sex, political scandal, and deadly betrayal.

  • Detroit mortgage broker Mark Unger adored his wife Florence and their two young sons. But after a decade of marriage and increasing financial trouble, Mark’s life began to slowly unravel. He became addicted to pain killers and gambling, and ended up spending five months in rehab.

    Forced to go back to work, Flo became bitter and resentful of Mark and began to have an affair with one of his friends. When Mark returned home and his disability checks weren’t enough to make ends meet, Flo filed for divorce.

    Panicked by the thought losing her, Mark did everything he could to win Flo back. Even though she resisted his efforts, Flo did agree to a weekend getaway at the family’s favorite lakeside resort. But after their first night there, Flo went missing … and the next day her corpse was found floating in the water. Mark claimed that her death was an accident—one that must have happened while he was up at the cottage putting the kids to sleep. But soon a jury would be convinced of what Flo’s friends and family believed to be true: that Flo would never have been alone on the boat dock that night because she was deathly afraid of the dark.

  • Let’s make a deal, you and me. Let’s make promises to each other. I promise to tell you my story. The whole story. I’ll tell you about a boy in love with Jesus who, at the fateful onset of puberty, realized his sexual attractions were persistently and exclusively for other guys. I’ll tell you how I lay on my bed in the middle of the night and whispered to myself the words I’ve whispered a thousand times since: “I’m gay.” I’ll show you the world through my eyes.

    I’ll tell you what it’s like to belong nowhere. To know that much of my Christian family will forever consider me unnatural, dangerous, because of something that feels as involuntary as my eye color. And to know that much of the LGBTQ community that shares my experience as a sexual minority will disagree with the way I’ve chosen to interpret the call of Jesus, believing I’ve bought into a tragic, archaic ritual of self-hatred.

    But I promise my story won’t all be sadness and loneliness and struggle. I’ll tell you good things too, hopeful things, funny things, like the time I accidentally came out to my best friend during his bachelor party. I’ll tell you what it felt like the first time someone looked me in the eyes and said, “You are not a mistake.” I’ll tell you that joy and sorrow are not opposites, that my life has never been more beautiful than when it was most brokenhearted.

    If you’ll listen, I promise I’ll tell you everything, and you can decide for yourself what you want to believe about me.

  • Gettysburg Rebels is the gripping true story of five young men who grew up in Gettysburg, moved south to Virginia in the 1850s, joined the Confederate army—and returned “home” as foreign invaders for the great battle in July 1863. Drawing on rarely seen documents and family histories, as well as military service records and contemporary accounts, Tom McMillan delves into the backgrounds of Wesley Culp, Henry Wentz, and the three Hoffman brothers in a riveting tale of Civil War drama and intrigue.

  • Kevin Canty tells a story based on a real incident that begins with a disastrous fire in an isolated silver-mining town in Idaho in the 1970s. Everyone in town had a friend, lover, brother, or a husband killed in the mine. The Underworld traces the lives of the handful of survivors and their loved ones—a young widow with twin children, a college student trying to make a life for himself in another town, a life-long hard-rock miner—as they struggle to come to terms with the loss. It’s a tough, hardworking, hard-drinking town, a town of prostitutes and priests and bar fights, but nobody is tough enough to get through this undamaged.

    This is a powerful and unforgettable tale about small-town lives and the healing power of love in the midst of suffering.

  • Nolan Jackson is a journeyman carpenter by trade and a wanderer by nature. And in 2007, while fellow Americans fight in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, Nolan roams, traveling between jobs building tract homes across the West. Following a shocking workplace accident in Las Vegas, he uproots himself from the tentative relationships he has made and heads toward the ocean.

    On his way he passes through his brother’s town where circumstances cost him his trailer and tools, forcing him to stay put. Unable to build houses, Nolan turns to building a meaningful life.

    Questions about Western-film notions of masculinity are woven throughout the novel; from the damage to Nolan’s family by the Vietnam War in which his father fought, to the ubiquity and consequence of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, to slow unraveling of his brother’s marriage and mental state, to the mysterious rash of arson in their small town.

    Ultimately, Journeyman is a timely, and tightly wound novel about dwelling, building, belonging, love, and men and brothers finding the value of a place to call home in the modern West.

  • The tight-knit residents of Blue Moon Mountain, nestled high in the Colorado Mountains, form an interconnected community of those living off the land, stunned by the beauty and isolation all around them. So when, at the onset of winter, the town veterinarian commits a violent act, the repercussions of that tragedy will be felt all across the mountainside, upending their lives and causing their paths to twist and collide in unexpected ways.

    The housecleaner rediscovering her sexual appetite, the farrier who must take in his traumatized niece, the grocer and her daughter, the therapist and the teacher, reaching out to the world in new and surprising ways, and the ragged couple trapped in a cycle of addiction and violence. They will all rise and converge upon the blue hour—the l’heure bleu—the hour of twilight, a time of desire, lust, honesty. The strong, spirited people of Blue Moon Mountain must learn to navigate the line between violence and sex, tenderness and the hard edge of yearning, and the often confusing paths of mourning and lust.

    Writing with passion for rural lives and the natural world, Laura Pritchett, who has been called “one of the most accomplished writers of the American West,” graces the land of desire in vivid prose, exploring the lengths these moving, deeply felt characters—some of whom we’ve met in Pritchett’s previous work—will traverse to protect their own.

  • The brain’s superpowers have been discovered by neuroscience. Your genius mind knows how to make your brain dissolve worry and stay in your best internal states longer. The result is a life full of possibility.

    The Worry-Free Mind shows you how to decipher the architecture of your model of reality, shift it to a newer version, and overcome your tendency to worry every day. With the powerful tools it offers, you can access your inner resources, lower stress, calm your reactive mind, feel cheerful, and create a dynamic flow.

    Can you imagine a day without worry and how productive you could be with the extra time you would have? By learning to shift and condition your internal state and set up your environment to support the changes you want to make, you can accomplish anything you want.

    The Worry-Free Mind will show you how to

    • unleash your brain’s superpowers in minutes,
    • shatter the illusions that keep you in a constant state of worry,
    • recondition your mind to a new state of being,
    • discover how your brain chemistry works to tap into natural bliss, and
    • shift your internal states to change your biology.
  • Each of us are alive for a very limited time. Or are we?

    What if we could live not just for a century but for millennia? What if there were a way for us to never die? Is such a thing even remotely possible?

    It may not only be feasible; it may very well have been achieved in the distant past. Ancient aliens may well have uncovered the secrets behind slowing, and ultimately completely stopping, the aging process.

    History is filled with accounts of fantastic beings, powerful gods, and half-human/half-alien entities that had extraordinarily long life spans. Many such stories are now largely dismissed as nothing more than the stuff of legend, folklore, and mythology. But what if the accounts are all too real?

    Highlights of Immortality of the Gods include:

    • The story of the legendary Anunnaki, how they achieved everlasting life, and why they shared their secrets with Noah, Methuselah, and other biblical figures;

    • The saga of Gilgamesh, a long-lived part-human, part-extraterrestrial Sumerian ruler who was obsessed with immortality; and

    • A study of the claims that one of the reasons for the 2003 invasion of Iraq was to uncover the millennia-old secrets of white powder gold, a manna-like substance that supposedly rejuvenates cells and tissue.

  • This riveting narrative explores the world of placebos, hypnosis, false memories, and neurology to reveal the groundbreaking science of our suggestible minds. Could the secrets to personal health lie within our own brains?

    Journalist Erik Vance explores the surprising ways our expectations and beliefs influence our bodily responses to pain, disease, and everyday events. Drawing on centuries of research and interviews with leading experts in the field, Vance takes us on a fascinating adventure from Harvard’s research labs to a witch doctor’s office in Catemaco, Mexico, to an alternative medicine school near Beijing (often called “China’s Hogwarts”). Vance’s firsthand dispatches will change the way you think—and feel.

    Continuing the success of National Geographic’s brain books and rounding out our pop science category, this book shows how expectations, beliefs, and self-deception can actively change our bodies and minds. Vance builds a case for our “internal pharmacy”—the very real chemical reactions our brains produce when we think we are experiencing pain or healing, actual or perceived. Supporting this idea is centuries of placebo research in a range of forms, from sugar pills to shock waves; studies of alternative medicine techniques heralded and condemned in different parts of the world (think crystals and chakras); and most recently, major advances in brain mapping technology. Thanks to this technology, we’re learning how we might leverage our suggestibility (or lack thereof) for personalized medicine, and Vance brings us to the front lines of such study.

  • Now available for the first time with two additional stories!

    Have you ever wondered what it's like to be bitten by a zombie or live through a bioweapon attack? In Cory Doctorow's collection of novellas, he wields his formidable experience in technology and computing to give us mind-bending sci-fi tales that explore the possibilities of information technology—and its various uses—run amok.

    "Anda's Game" is a spin on the bizarre new phenomenon of "cyber sweatshops," in which people are paid very low wages to play online games all day in order to generate in-game wealth, which can be converted into actual money. Another tale tells of the heroic exploits of "sysadmins"—systems administrators—as they defend the cyberworld, and hence the world at large, from worms and bioweapons. And yes, there is a story about zombies too. Plus, for the first time, this collection includes "Petard" and "The Man Who Sold the Moon."

  • What is resilience? Is it just a fancy way to characterize a hopeful, upbeat personality or a positive spirit of never giving up? In Positively Resilient, Doug Hensch aims to take a different look at what turns out to be a much richer and deeper concept than just bouncing back from adversity.

    Martin Seligman, considered the father of positive psychology, has likened resilience to clearing the weeds from a rose garden, which can reach its potential only if the weeds are kept in check. Human beings face “weeds” of their own: layoffs, health issues, stock-market crashes, threats of terrorism, and natural disasters are all too common. Americans are busier, more stressed, and more anxious and depressed than they were during the Great Depression.

    Based on more than forty years of research and twenty years of professional experience, Positively Resilient will help you discover:

    • How any efforts toward personal change can be enhanced using several simple steps,
    • That being psychologically flexible is critical to thinking through the mountain of information we receive every day,
    • How to incorporate mindfulness and curiosity into your life,
    • How our emotions help us to navigate our environment, and
    • Why true support and connection are critical to being resilient.
  • What makes a penguin a bird? Is a camel more closely related to a horse than to a giraffe? Why is a whale not a fish? Similar puzzles preoccupied Charles Darwin throughout his life. Whimsy, in the playfulness of stories for children, is a way to appreciate Darwinian histories.

    In Do Elephants Have Knees? Charles R. Ault Jr. uses the fanciful imagery of story to explain Darwinian thought. At the same time, he launches careful consideration of Darwin’s humanity, the origins of his curiosity, and the reach of his ideas.

    Ault’s approach illustrates the value of story form in learning science and provides a wealth of resources for enriching courses that focus on Darwin’s ideas. “Good storytelling mines curiosity,” Ault writes, “and exuberant playfulness enriches a disciplined study of science.”

  • Conspirators plot to explode a train carrying nerve gas. A perfect servant suddenly reveals himself to be the insidious Dr. Fu Manchu. Science-fantasy wars, racism, corporate capitalism, drug addiction, and various medical and psychiatric horrors all play their parts in this mosaic, experimental novel. Here is William S. Burroughs at his coruscating and hilarious best.

  • The bestselling, award-winning author of The Last Summer of the Camperdowns returns with another rollicking, summertime family saga.

    Maine’s rugged, picturesque Monhegan Island is home to weathered lobster fishermen and curious tourists, a genial if sleepy group. But when Spark Monahan―rakish prodigal son―returns unannounced to the dilapidated family home, his arrival launches a summer the likes of which this quiet town has never seen.

    During Spark’s absence, his young son Hally has been cared for by what remains of the Monahan family: Spark’s gentle brother Hugh and their shrewd, fork-tongued father Pastor Ragnar. Pastor Ragnar has led them with an iron will and a unique religious ideology, while Hugh has been busy mending the scars of a tumultuous family history. Spark’s reentry into the family is rocky; even as adolescent Hally warms to his father’s flair for mischief, he struggles to define himself against this new paternal figure. Testing the limits with one dangerous prank after another, Hally suddenly stuns the entire island when he claims to have had a spiritual vision.

    Though Spark remains permanently dubious about the alleged apparition, Pastor Ragnar pounces on the chance to revive his flagging church. Hally is shoved into the spotlight, and in the frenzy that follows, each man in the family fights for independence, understanding, and ultimately forgiveness against the tide of a phenomenon reaching far beyond the slippery slopes of their remote island home.

    Their unforgettable saga is told by the character best suited to sniff out the family’s uneasy secrets: Spark’s charismatic, fiercely loyal dog, Ned. Never at a loss for a quip on the stormy affairs of the Monahan family, Ned tells their larger-than-life story with humor and love from his uniquely privileged perspective.

    An uproarious tale of an eccentric family of fathers and sons, The Miracle of Monhegan Island is another delightful summer blockbuster from Elizabeth Kelly.

  • At once intimate and sweeping, Bottomland—the anticipated second novel from Michelle Hoover—follows the Hess family in the years after World War I as they attempt to rid themselves of the anti-German sentiment that left a stain on their name. But when the youngest two daughters vanish in the middle of the night, the family must piece together what happened while struggling to maintain their life on the unforgiving Iowa plains.

    In the weeks after Esther and Myrle’s disappearance, their siblings desperately search for the sisters, combing the stark farmlands, their neighbors’ houses, and the unfamiliar world of far-off Chicago. Have the girls run away to another farm? Have they gone to the city to seek a new life? Or were they abducted? Ostracized, misunderstood, and increasingly isolated in their tightly knit small town in the wake of the war, the Hesses fear the worst. Told in the voices of the family patriarch and his children, this is a haunting literary mystery that spans decades before its resolution. Hoover deftly examines the intrepid ways a person can forge a life of their own despite the dangerous obstacles of prejudice and oppression.

  • A compelling coming-of-age adventure from legendary SF master and multiple New York Times bestseller Robert A. Heinlein

    Lummox has been the pet of the Stuart family for generations. With eight legs, a thick hide, and increasingly large size, Lummox is nobody’s idea of man’s best friend. Nevertheless, John Stuart XI, descendant of the starman who originally brought Lummox back to Earth, loves him. But when Lummox eats a neighbor’s car and begins to grow again, the feds decide that enough is enough. John isn’t about to let the authorities take his pet away, and with his best friend, Betty, he determines to save Lummox—even if he must forever leave the life he’s always known.

  • In nineteenth-century Vienna, a drama of love, fate, and will is played out amid the intellectual ferment that defined the era. Josef Breuer, one of the founding fathers of psychoanalysis, is at the height of his career. Friedrich Nietzsche, Europe’s greatest philosopher, is on the brink of suicidal despair, unable to find a cure for the headaches and other ailments that plague him.

    When he agrees to treat Nietzsche with his experimental “talking cure,” Breuer never expects that he too will find solace in their sessions. Only through facing his own inner demons can the gifted healer begin to help his patient. In When Nietzsche Wept, Irvin Yalom blends fact and fiction, atmosphere and suspense to unfold an unforgettable story about the redemptive power of friendship.

  • One of the web's most celebrated high-tech culture mavens returns with this second collection of essays and polemics. Discussing complex topics in an accessible manner, Cory Doctorow's visions of a future where artists have full freedom of expression is tempered with his understanding that creators need to benefit from their own creations. From extolling the Etsy makerverse to excoriating Apple for dumbing down technology while creating an information monopoly, each unique piece is brief, witty, and at the cutting edge of tech. Now a stay-at-home dad as well as an international activist, Doctorow writes as eloquently about creating real-time Internet theater with his daughter as he does while lambasting the corporations that want to profit from inherent intellectual freedoms.

  • Hailed by Bruce Sterling as a "political activist, gizmo freak, junk collector, programmer, entrepreneur, and all-around Renaissance geek," Cory Doctorow is the web's most celebrated high-tech pop-culture maven. Content is the first collection of Doctorow's infamous articles, essays, and polemics.

    Here's why Microsoft should stop treating its customers as criminals (through relentless digital-rights management); how America chose copyright and Happy Meal toys over jobs; why Facebook is taking a faceplant; how Wikipedia is a poor cousin of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy; and, of course, why free e-books kick ass.

    Accessible to geeks and noobs (if you're not sure what that means, it's you) alike, Content is a must-have compilation from Cory Doctorow, who will be glad to take you along for the ride as he effortlessly surfs the zeitgeist.

  • From 1966 to 1980, Damon Knight created the Orbit series of anthologies, representing the finest writing in the science fiction genre. Nineteen of Kate Wilhelm's stories were included in this series of twenty-one volumes. Among these are "Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang," an exploration of infertility and cloning in the aftermath of global environmental collapse. It won the Locus, Jupiter, and Hugo awards for Best Novel in 1977. "The Planners" reaches into the moral conflicts of a primate researcher and won the Nebula Award for Best Short Story in 1968. Other stories include a road trip into a woman's psyche; primal fears through the eyes of a wise and empathetic alien; an encounter in a bus depot during a raging winter storm; and the first "interactive" reality TV show. Ms. Wilhelm's stories are prophetic yet as recognizable as a story in this morning's paper.

  • The only audio edition of Necronomicon authorized by the H. P. Lovecraft Estate

    Originally written for the pulp magazines of the 1920s and ’30s, H. P. Lovecraft’s astonishing tales blend elements of horror, science fiction, and cosmic terror that are as powerful today as they were when first published. This tome brings together all of Lovecraft’s harrowing stories, including the complete Cthulhu Mythos cycle, just the way they were when first released. It will introduce a whole new generation of readers to Lovecraft’s fiction, as well as attract those fans who want all his work in a single, definitive volume.

    Stories include:

    “Dagon”
    “Herbert West – Reanimator”
    “The Lurking Fear”
    “The Rats in the Walls”
    “The Whisperer in the Darkness”
    “Cool Air”
    “In the Vault”
    “The Call of Cthulu”
    “The Color Out of Space”
    “The Horror at Red Hook”
    “The Music of Erich Zann”
    “The Shadow Out of Time”
    “The Dunwich Horror”
    “The Haunter of the Dark”
    “The Outsider”
    “The Shunned House”
    “The Unnameable”
    “The Thing on the Doorstep”
    “Under the Pyramids”

  • With "incantatory prose" that "sweeps over the reader like a dream" (Philadelphia Inquirer), Hoffman follows her celebrated bestseller The Probable Future with an evocative work that traces the lives of the various occupants of an old Massachusetts house over a span of two hundred years.

    In a rare and gorgeous departure, beloved novelist Alice Hoffman weaves a web of tales, all set in Blackbird House. This small farm on the outer reaches of Cape Cod is a place that is as bewitching and alive as the characters we meet: Violet, a brilliant girl who is in love with books and with a man destined to betray her; Lysander Wynn, attacked by a halibut as big as a horse, certain that his life is ruined until a boarder wearing red boots arrives to change everything; Maya Cooper, who does not understand the true meaning of the love between her mother and father until it is nearly too late. From the time of the British occupation of Massachusetts to our own modern world, family after family's lives are inexorably changed, not only by the people they love but by the lives they lead inside Blackbird House.

    These interconnected narratives are as intelligent as they are haunting, as luminous as they are unusual. Inside Blackbird House more than a dozen men and women learn how love transforms us and how it is the one lasting element in our lives. The past both dissipates and remains contained inside the rooms of Blackbird House, where there are terrible secrets, inspired beauty, and, above all else, a spirit of coming home.

    From the writer that Time has said tells "truths powerful enough to break a reader's heart" comes a glorious travelogue through time and fate, through loss and love and survival. Welcome to Blackbird House.

  • Fate—is it written in the stars from the moment we are born, or is it a bendable thing that we can shape with our own hands? Jepp of Astraveld needs to know.

    He left his countryside home on the empty promise of a stranger, only to become a captive in the strange, luxurious prison that is Coudenberg Palace, the royal court of the Spanish infanta. Nobody warned Jepp that, as a court dwarf, daily injustices would become his seemingly unshakeable fate. If the humiliations were his alone, perhaps he could endure them, but it breaks Jepp’s heart to see his friend Lia suffer.

    After Jepp and Lia perform a daring escape from the palace, Jepp is imprisoned again, alone in a cage. Now, spirited across Europe by a kidnapper in a horse-drawn carriage, Jepp is unsure where his unfortunate stars may lead him.

    Before Jepp can become the master of his own destiny, he will need to prove himself to a brilliant and eccentric new master—a man devoted to uncovering the secrets of the stars—earn the love of a girl brave and true, and unearth the long-buried secrets of his parentage. He will find that beneath the breathtaking cruelty of the world is something else: the persistence of human kindness.

    Masterfully written, grippingly paced, and inspired by real historical characters, Jepp, Who Defied the Stars is an awe-inspiring story of triumph in the face of unimaginable odds.

  • As a boy, Dick Falkner ran away from abject poverty and an abusive alcoholic father. Sixteen years later, he finds himself hungry of body and empty of spirit in a Midwestern town. Although he finds no help in this so-called Christian town, he is eventually taken in by George Udell, a local publisher and kindhearted man. Through hard work and Christian morals, this man, who becomes known as “that printer of Udell’s,” rises above his past to a new, inspiring life with God.

  • The wickedest, most wonderful science fiction story ever created in our—or any—time

    Anything can begin at a party in California—and everything does in this bold masterwork by a grand master of science fiction.

    When four supremely sensual and unspeakably cerebral humans—two male, two female—find themselves under attack from aliens who want their awesome quantum breakthrough, they take to the skies—and zoom into the cosmos on a rocket roller-coaster ride of adventure, danger, ecstasy, and peril.

  • Part Friday Night Lights by H. G. Bissinger, part Outsiders by S. E. Hinton, this debut YA novel tells the incredibly powerful story of bullying and how—taken to the extreme—it can wreak havoc on the lives of teenagers.

    Kurt is a talented but emotionally damaged football player. Danny is a rising star on the gymnastics team, an outsider in a school where the football team rules. But the two form an unlikely friendship, and when one of the gym team is viciously assaulted by the quarterback and his cronies, Kurt rises to his defense and challenges the entrenched stereotypes of high school sports.

    Reminiscent of the early work of Markus Zusak, this is that rare book that authentically captures the voices, fierce loyalties, and harsh justice of teenage boys.

  • When Cora Holman's mother dies, she assumes the inevitable: that her mother overdosed on the painkillers she'd been taking for years. So she's shocked to learn that her mother and a neighbor both died of a brain aneurysm the same night. When Cora and other neighborhood teens become ill with a mysterious flu, and government-type strangers arrive in her small town, they all fear the unthinkable—a terrorist attack. With each glass of water they drink, the people of Trinity Falls are poisoning themselves.

    Meanwhile, a world away in Pakistan, a sixteen-year-old computer genius named Shahzad is working as a virtual spy. He's alarmed to see an influx of chatter about a substance called Red Vinegar that will, as he reads, "lead to many deaths in Colony One."

    Can Shahzad sift through the babble of the chat room, find the location of the attack, and warn the victims in time? And if so, at what cost to him?

    A Printz Honor Award winner and two-time Edgar Allan Poe Award finalist, Carol Plum-Ucci explores disturbing new terrain in this riveting novel that examines the heroes and victims involved in a terrifying act of bioterrorism.

  • Bioterrorists watch and wait, ready to fuel another nightmare.

    ShadowStrike poisoned the water of Trinity Falls two months ago. Now the Trinity Four, the teens most affected by the poison, have been isolated in a remote mansion under twenty-four-hour medical care while scientists on four continents rush to discover a cure.

    For Scott, Cora, Owen, and Rain, life is anything but peaceful at the old Kellerton mansion. Boredom and resentment build as they struggle with annoying—and possibly fatal—symptoms, while dueling with their own personal demons.

    Meanwhile, US operatives scour the world for the bioterrorists responsible for this heinous crime as two teen virtual spies, also infected, hunt for the criminals on the Internet. The danger remains real—for ShadowStrike has every reason to pursue the Trinity Four, and their evil plan will unleash a new designer virus that's even deadlier than the first.

  • “Is Google making us stupid?” When Nicholas Carr posed that question in an Atlantic Monthly cover story, he tapped into a well of anxiety about how the Internet is changing us. He also crystallized one of the most important debates of our time: as we enjoy the Internet’s bounties, are we sacrificing our ability to read and think deeply?

    Now, Carr expands his argument into the most compelling exploration yet published of the Internet’s intellectual and cultural consequences. Weaving insights from philosophy, neuroscience, and history into a rich narrative, The Shallows explains how the Internet is rerouting our neural pathways, replacing the subtle mind of the book reader with the distracted mind of the screen watcher. A gripping story of human transformation played out against a backdrop of technological upheaval, The Shallows will forever alter the way we think about media and our minds.

  • This final collection in Orson Scott Card's five-volume anthology of short works features the "hidden stories", including his first published piece, some tales about Mormon family life and other stylistic departures, and several stories that were later developed into acclaimed novels such asEnder's Game,Songmaster,Invasive Procedures, and the Tales of Alvin Maker series. Listen as Card crafts a paranoid thriller, a spoof of "serious" contemporary literature, an epic narrative poem, and much more. Card includes background commentaries for each story in his afterwords. Stories include:Ender's Game;Mikal's Songbird;Prentice Alvin and the No-Good Plow;Malpractice;Follower;Hitching;Damn Fine Novel;Billy's Box;The Best Family Home Evening Ever;Bicicleta;I Think Mom and Dad Are Going Crazy, Jerry; andGert Fram.

  • After firewalking in Polynesia, fundamentalist minister Alexander Hergensheimer never saw the world the same. Now called Alec Graham, he is in the middle of an affair with his stewardess, Margrethe, when natural disasters begin plaguing them. First, there is an impossible iceberg that wrecks the ship in the tropics; then, after being rescued by a Royal Mexican plane, they are hit by a double earthquake. To Alex, the signs are clear: Armageddon and the Day of Judgment are near. Somehow, he has to bring his beloved heathen, Margrethe, to a state of grace, for heaven would be no paradise without her. But time is growing short. And, while he is at it, there has to be a way to save the rest of the world.

  • He didn’t intend to burn half of Berkeley to the ground or create a media frenzy by faking his best friend’s suicide or enroll in high school dressed as an elderly Italian woman. However, he did. Nick Twisp started out an honor student and ended up a fugitive. His ongoing struggles to make sense out of high school, deal with his divorced parents, and lose his virginity have resulted in his transformation from an unassuming, precocious fourteen year old to a modern youth in open revolt.

    Now, in the concluding volume of Nick’s hilarious journals, we find him reenrolled in high school disguised as a girl, avoiding the eye of the law while fending off passes from undiscerning boys. The long-delayed resolution of his quest to win teen goddess Sheeni Saunders and achieve independence will fulfill every teenage fantasy.

  • Welcome to the world of Nick Twisp, California’s most precocious diarist, whose ongoing struggles to make sense out of high school, deal with his divorced parents, and lose his virginity result in his transformation from an unassuming fourteen-year-old to a modern youth in open revolt. In Youth in Revolt, the first volume of Nick’s journals, we witnessed his transition from young literary hacker to rebel with a libidinous cause as he attempted to win teen goddess Sheeni Saunders. In Youth in Bondage, the second volume of Nick’s journals, we find him stuck in Sheeni’s hometown of Ukiah, living like an indentured servant with his penny-pinching father while his paramour and her boyfriend are away at school in Santa Cruz. But trouble finds Nick again when the FBI picks up his trail and he must rely on the cahones of his tough alter ego, François Dillinger.

  • Nick Twisp started out an honor student and ended up a fugitive. Youth in Revolt is the three-volume journal of Nick Twisp, California's most precocious diarist, whose ongoing struggles to make sense out of high school, deal with his divorced parents, and lose his virginity result in his transformation from an unassuming fourteen-year-old to a modern youth in open revolt.

    Youth in Revolt
    As his family splinters, worlds collide, and the police block all routes out of town, Nick must cope with economic deprivation, homelessness, the gulag of the public schools, a competitive Type-A father, murderous canines (in triplicate), and an inconvenient hair trigger on his erectile response—all while vying ardently for the affections of the beauteous Sheeni Saunders, teenage goddess and ultimate intellectual goad.

    Youth in Bondage
    Nick Twisp is living in a wasteland with his stingy father while the female object of his fantasies is away at school. But when the FBI picks up his trail, Nick must rely on his tough alter ego, François Dillinger.

    Youth in Exile
    He didn't intend to burn half of Berkeley to the ground or create a media frenzy or enroll in high school dressed as a woman. However, he did, and it was just part of Nick Twisp's quest for sex and independence.

    He's smart, he's horny, he's resourceful, and he's on the loose.

  • The stars were closed to Max Jones. To get into space you either needed connections, a membership in the arcane Guild, or a whole lot more money than Max, the son of a widowed, poor mother, was ever going to have. What Max does have going for him are his uncle’s prized astrogation manuals—books on star navigation that Max literally commits to memory word for word, equation for equation. When Max’s mother decides to remarry a bullying oaf, Max takes to the road, only to discover that his uncle Chet’s manuals, and Max’s near complete memorization of them, is a ticket to the stars. But serving on a spaceship is no easy task.  Duty is everything, and a mistake can mean you and all aboard are lost forever. Max loves every minute of his new life, and he steadily grows in the trust of his superior officers. He seems to be on course for a command track position—but then disaster strikes, and it’s going to take every trick Max ever learned from his tough life and his uncle’s manuals to save himself and the ship from a doom beyond extinction itself.  

    From the First Golden Age of Heinlein, this is the so-called juvenile (written, Heinlein always claims, just as much for adults) that started them all and made Heinlein a legend for multiple generations of readers.

  • Nic Sheff was drunk for the first time at age eleven. In the years that followed, he regularly smoked pot, did cocaine and ecstasy, and developed addictions to crystal meth and heroin. Even so, he felt like he would always be able to quit and put his life together whenever he needed to. It took a violent relapse one summer in California to convince him otherwise.

    In writing that is raw and honest, Nic spares no detail in telling us the compelling, heartbreaking, and true story of his relapse and the road to recovery. As we watch Nic plunge into the mental and physical depths of drug addiction, he paints a picture of a person at odds with his past, with his family, with his substances, and with himself. It’s a harrowing portrait, but not one without hope.

  • He knows the secret, she knows the truth…

    “The list. You’re on the list. God’s chosen Gene.”

    When children’s hospital volunteer and high school student Gene Adamson hears the words of the dying man, the gunman who used him as a shield after murdering a prominent geneticist, Gene thinks the man delirious. But then the bodies of killer and victim disappear from the morgue, and a ten-year-old girl desperately needing a heart transplant is mysteriously bumped from her number-one spot on the organ-recipient list. The list. What is the list? Gene, together with Jeanne Everston, the beautiful daughter of the murdered geneticist, appears to have stumbled onto a medical conspiracy so deadly the very knowledge of its existence marks them for death.

    As a child’s life hangs in the balance, Gene believes he’s discovered the answer. He thinks he’s cracked the conspiracy wide open. He is so wrong.

  • This hilarious, take-no-prisoners novel about a cynical, sex-obsessed teenager's pining love for an intelligent girl is now a major motion picture from Dimension Films starring Michael Cera.

    Youth in Revolt brings us the journals of Nick Twisp, California's most precocious diarist, whose ongoing struggles to make sense out of high school, deal with his divorced parents, and lose his virginity result in his transformation from an unassuming fourteen-year-old to a modern youth in open revolt. As his family splinters, worlds collide, and the police block all routes out of town, Nick must cope with economic deprivation, homelessness, the gulag of the public schools, a competitive Type-A father, murderous canines (in triplicate), and an inconvenient hair trigger on his erectile response—all the while vying ardently for the affections of the beauteous Sheeni Saunders, teenage goddess and ultimate intellectual goad.

  • How many fourteen-year-old boys would turn down an offer of time travel to any baseball game in history? Certainly not die-hard New York Yankees fan, Matt Collier. Accompanied by the Time Keeper, guardian of Time throughout the universe, Matt becomes the batboy for his beloved team and tries to change the outcome of the 1960 World Series, the first ever to end with a homerun.