Thursday, April 28, 2011

Boys and Girls

Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon
This novel introduces two unforgettable characters: Grady Tripp, a former publishing prodigy now lost in a fog of pot and passion and stalled in the midst of his endless second book, and Grady's student, James Leer, a budding writer obsessed with Hollywood self-destruction and struggling with his own searching heart. It is a deft parody of the American fame factory and a piercing portrait of young and old desire.

Daughters of Rome by Kate Quinn
A.D. 69. Nero is dead. The Roman Empire is up for the taking. With bloodshed spilling out of the palace and into the streets of Rome, chaos has become the status quo. The year of four emperors will change everything--especially the lives of two sisters with a very personal stake in the outcome. Elegant and ambitious, Cornelia embodies the essence of the perfect Roman wife. Her sister, Marcella, is more withdrawn, content to witness history rather than make it. But when a bloody coup turns their world upside down, Cornelia and Marcella must maneuver carefully just to stay alive. As Cornelia tries to pick up the pieces of her shattered dreams, Marcella discovers a hidden talent for influencing the most powerful men in Rome. In the end, though, there can only be on Emperor... and one Empress.

Friday, April 22, 2011

More New Fiction!

Attachments by Rainbow Rowell
Beth Fremont and Jennifer Scribner-Snyder, coworkers at The Courier, know the newspaper monitors their office e-mail. But they still spend all day sending each other messages, gossiping about their coworkers, and baring their personal lives like an open book. Jennifer tells Beth everything that she can't seem to tell her husband about her anxieties over starting a family. And Beth tells Jennifer everything, period. Meanwhile, Lincoln O'Neill still can't believe that it's his job to monitor other people's email. He is supposed to turn people in for misusing company e-mail, but he can't quite bring himself to crack down on Beth and Jennifer. He can't help being entertained--and captivated--by their stories. But by the time Lincoln realizes he's falling for Beth, it's way too late for him to ever introduce himself. What would he say to her? "Hi, I'm the guy who reads your e-mail, and also, I love you"?

Daniel O'Thunder by Ian Weir
1851. London, England. Once a well-known prize-fighter with a terrifying right fist (known as "the hammer of heaven"), Daniel O'Thunder has seen the light, and now the protection of the poor and the weak is his life's work. He runs an establishment for those in need of food, shelter and counsel--a place where virtue and vice rub shoulders uneasily. But an ancient evil is stalking the streets, preying on the vulnerable souls it finds there. It is an evil that takes different forms and hides behind many faces, threatening everything Daniel loves most. Driven to desperation, Daniel responds by issuing a breathtaking the Devil himself.

An Atlas of Impossible Longing by Anuradha Roy
On the outskirts of a small town in Bengal, a family lives in solitude in their vast new house. Here, lives intertwine and unravel. A widower struggles with his love for an unmarried cousin. Bakul, a motherless daughter, runs wild with Mukunda, an orphan of unknown caste adopted by the family. Confined in a room at the top of the house, a matriarch goes slowly mad; her husband searches for its cause as he shapes and reshapes his garden. As Mukunda and Bakul grow, their intense closeness matures into something else, and Mukunda is banished to Calcutta. He prospers in the turbulent years after Partition, but his thoughts stay with his home, with Bakul, with all that he has lost--and he knows that he must return.

Friday, April 15, 2011

New Fiction

Miles to Go by Richard Paul Evans
Alan Christoffersen, a once-successful advertising executive, wakes one morning to find himself injured, alone, and confined to a hospital bed in Spokane, Washington. Sixteen days earlier, reeling from the sudden loss of his wife, his home, and his business, Alan left everything he knew behind and set off on an extraordinary cross-country journey. Carrying only a backpack, he planned to walk to Key West, the farthest destination on his map. But a vicious roadside stabbing has interrupted Alan's trek and robbed him of his one source of solace: the ability to walk. Homeless and facing months of recovery, Alan has nowhere to turn--until a mysterious woman enters his life and invites him to her home. Generous and kind, Angel seems to good to be true, but all is not as it appears.

Swim Back to Me by Ann Packer
This is a collection of burnished, emotionally searing stories, framed by two unforgettable linked narratives that express the transformation of a single family over the course of a lifetime. A wife struggles to make sense of her husband's sudden disappearance. A mother mourns her teenage son through the music collection he left behind. A woman shepherds her estranged parents through her brother's wedding and reflects on the year her family collapsed. A young man comes to grips with the joy-- and vulnerability-- of fatherhood. Two teenagers from very different families forge a sustaining friendship, only to discover the disruptive and unsettling power of sex.

The Pale King by David Foster Wallace
The agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, Illinois, appear ordinary enough to newly arrived trainee David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. And he has arrived at a moment when forces within the IRS are plotting to eliminate what little humanity and dignity the work still has. The Pale King remained unfinished at the time of David Foster Wallace's death, but it is a deeply compelling and satisfying novel, hilarious and fearless and as original as anything Wallace ever undertook.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Brides, Social Media, and Work

Bridal Bargains: Secrets to Throwing a Fantastic Wedding on a Realistic Budget by Denise & Alan Fields
Wow! Finally, a wedding book for the rest of us. With average wedding costs soaring over $25,000, you need real-life solutions and creative ideas to plan a wedding without going bankrupt. Bridal Bargains is the answer! Now in its 10th edition with over 700,000 copies in print. Including are the best web sites to save on everything from flowers to gowns, invitations to, well, you name it, fourteen creative ways to cut the catering bill at your reception, eleven questions you should ask any photographer, ways to green your wedding, the best bargains on honeymoons, etc.

Socialnomics: How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business by Erik Qualman
Welcome to the world of Socialnomics-- where consumers and the societies they create online have profound effects on our economy and the businesses that operate within it. Online word of mouth, social search, social commerce, and the influence of peer groups are making traditional marketing strategies obsolete. As a result, we no longer have a choice on whether we do social media; the question is how well we do it. Join Erik Qualman for a fascinating look at the business implications of social media, and tap its considerable power to increase sales, cut marketing costs, and communicate directly with consumers.

Personality Plus at Work: How to Work Successfully with Anyone by Florence Littauer and Rose Sweet
No matter where you work, you're going to have co-workers you get along with and those you could get along without. But did you know that you hold the key to working well with all of your co-workers? It comes from discovering how to harness the power of personality. For 25 years, Florence Littauer's bestselling Personality Plus has been required reading for employees of major companies. It shows you how to work successfully with anyone by paying attention to basic personality differences. It shows you what happens when personalities are ignored, how each personality can lead, and how to combine different personalities to maintain a vital and harmonious workplace.

Friday, April 1, 2011


Against All Odds: My Life of Hardship, Fast Breaks, and Second Chances by Scott Brown
Scott Brown's greatest win did not occur on a cold January election night in 2010 when he came from behind to capture the U.S. Senate seat held by Ted Kennedy for nearly fifty years. It began when he survived a savage beating at the drunken, dirty-fingernail hands of a stepfather when he was barely six years old, while trying to protect his mother. In this gripping memoir of resilience and redemption, Brown tells the story of his difficult, often nomadic childhood, shunted from house to apartment, and town to town, seventeen times over his first eighteen years.

America by Heart: Reflection on Family, Faith, and Flag by Sarah Palin
This book is a highly personal testament to Palin's deep love of country, her strong roots in faith, and her profound appreciation of family. Ranging widely over American history, culture, and current affairs, Governor Palin reflects on the key values that have been such an essential part of her own life and that continue to inform her vision of America's future. The book also includes brief readings from classic and contemporary texts that have moved and inspired her, as well as portraits of Americans, both famous and obscure, whom she admires.

Not at All What One is Used to: The Life and Times of Isabella Gardner by Marian Janssen
Born in 1915 to one of New England's elite wealthy families, Isabella Gardner was expected to follow a certain path in life--one that would take her from marriageable debutante to proper society lady. But that plan was derailed when at age eighteen, Isabella caused a drunk-driving accident. Her family, to shield her from disgrace, sent her to Europe for acting studies, not foreseeing how life abroad would fan romantic longings and artistic impulses that would define the rest of Isabella's years. Janssen tells the story of this passionate, troubled woman, whose career as a poet was in constant compromise with her wayward love life and her impulsive and reckless character.