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Sara Pennypacker

Set in China in 1958, this is the inspiring story of a young girl who creates a sanctuary for sparrows while Mao Tse Tung’s “Sparrow War” was decimating the country’s bird population.

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Mary Doria Russell

A visionary work that combines speculative fiction with deep philosophical inquiry, The Sparrow tells the story of a charismatic Jesuit priest and linguist, Emilio Sandoz, who leads a scientific mission entrusted with a profound task: to make first contact with intelligent extraterrestrial life. The mission begins in faith, hope, and beauty, but a series of small misunderstandings brings it to a catastrophic end. Praise for The Sparrow “A startling, engrossing, and moral work of fiction.”—The New York Times Book Review “Important novels leave deep cracks in our beliefs, our prejudices, and our blinders. The Sparrow is one of them.”—Entertainment Weekly “Powerful . . . The Sparrow tackles a difficult subject with grace and intelligence.”—San Francisco Chronicle “Provocative, challenging . . . recalls both Arthur C. Clarke and H. G. Wells, with a dash of Ray Bradbury for good measure.”—The Dallas Morning News “[Mary Doria] Russell shows herself to be a skillful storyteller who subtly and expertly builds suspense.”—USA Today From the Trade Paperback edition.

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Molly Beth Griffin

WINNER OF THE MILKWEED PRIZE FOR CHILDREN'S LITERATURE WINNER OF THE 2013 PATERSON PRIZE FOR BOOKS FOR YOUNG READERS ALA RAINBOW LIST RECOMMENDED BOOK AMELIA BLOOMER PROJECT LIST RECOMMENDED BOOK LAMBDA LITERARY AWARD FINALIST MINNESOTA BOOK AWARD FINALIST FOREWARD REVIEWS BOOK OF THE YEAR HONORABLE MENTION In the summer of 1926, sixteen-year-old Garnet Richardson is sent to a lake resort to escape the polio epidemic in the city. She dreams of indulging her passion for ornithology and visiting the famous new amusement park--a summer of fun before she returns for her final year of high school, after which she’s expected to marry a nice boy and settle into middle-class homemaking. But in the country, Garnet finds herself under the supervision of equally oppressive guardians--her father’s wealthy cousin and the matron’s stuck-up daughter. Only a liberating job in a hat shop, an intense, secret relationship with a daring and beautiful flapper, and a deep faith in her own fierce heart can save her from the suffocating boredom of traditional femininity.

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Lisa Sandell,Lisa Ann Sandell

This eloquent and gripping addition to the Camelot canon -- written in beautiful verse -- has received glowing, starred reviews and early awards buzz! Since the days of King Arthur, there have been poems and paintings created in her name. She is Elaine of Ascolat, the Lady of Shalott, and now there is a book all her own. The year is 490 A.D. and 16-year-old Elaine has a temperament to match her fiery red hair. Living on a military base with her father, brothers, and the rest of Arthur's army, Elaine pines for the handsome Lancelot, and longs for a female friend. But when the cruel, beautiful Gwynivere arrives, Elaine is confronted with startling emotions of jealousy and rivalry. Can Elaine find the strength to survive the birth of a kingdom?

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Tayari Jones

From the New York Times Bestselling Author of An American Marriage “A love story . . . Full of perverse wisdom and proud joy . . . Jones’s skill for wry understatement never wavers.” —O: The Oprah Magazine “Silver Sparrow will break your heart before you even know it. Tayari Jones has written a novel filled with characters I’ll never forget. This is a book I’ll read more than once.” —Judy Blume With the opening line of Silver Sparrow, "My father, James Witherspoon, is a bigamist," author Tayari Jones unveils a breathtaking story about a man's deception, a family's complicity, and the two teenage girls caught in the middle. Set in a middle-class neighborhood in Atlanta in the 1980s, the novel revolves around James Witherspoon's two families—the public one and the secret one. When the daughters from each family meet and form a friendship, only one of them knows they are sisters. It is a relationship destined to explode. This is the third stunning novel from an author deemed "one of the most important writers of her generation" (the Atlanta Journal Constitution).

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Jacques van Heerden

Do birds talk? Of course they do! Some, as Mark Twain said, can talk a blue streak, while others have a very limited vocabulary – not all that unlike humans, after all! Billy is a little sparrow who lives in sunny South Africa. In his own peculiar way he tells us a bit about himself, his great love, Sally, their children, their friends and foes. And there is Madame Helena De Troy, an old owl lady who lives in the church tower behind the tree where their nest is. Together they contemplate the meaning of life and death and when Billy finally gets the answer, it is something which also has meaning for us.

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Jason Matthews

Now a major motion picture starring Jennifer Lawrence and Joel Edgerton! From the New York Times bestselling author and veteran CIA officer Jason Matthews comes the electrifying modern spy thriller Red Sparrow. In contemporary Russia, state intelligence officer Dominika Egorova has been drafted to become a “Sparrow”—a spy trained in the art of seduction to elicit information from their marks. She’s been assigned to Nathaniel Nash, a CIA officer who handles the organization’s most sensitive penetration of Russian intelligence. The two young intelligence officers, trained in their respective spy schools, collide in a charged atmosphere of tradecraft, deception and, inevitably, a forbidden spiral of carnal attraction that threatens their careers and the security of America’s valuable mole in Moscow. For fans of John le Carré and Ian Fleming and featuring “high-level espionage, pulse-pounding danger, sex, double agents, and double crosses” (Nelson DeMille), Red Sparrow is a timely and electrifying thriller that is impossible to put down.

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Zana Fraillon

Shortlisted for the Guardian Children's Fiction Prize. Perfect for fans of THE BOY IN THE STRIPED PYJAMAS. This is a beautiful, vivid and deeply moving story about a refugee boy who has spent his entire life living in a detention centre. This novel reminds us all of the importance of freedom, hope, and the power of a story to speak for anyone who's ever struggled to find a safe home. '...a special book' - Morris Gleitzman, author of the acclaimed ONCE series Born in a refugee camp, all Subhi knows of the world is that he's at least 19 fence diamonds high, the nice Jackets never stay long, and at night he dreams that the sea finds its way to his tent, bringing with it unusual treasures. And one day it brings him Jimmie. Carrying a notebook that she's unable to read and wearing a sparrow made out of bone around her neck - both talismans of her family's past and the mother she's lost - Jimmie strikes up an unlikely friendship with Subhi beyond the fence. As he reads aloud the tale of how Jimmie's family came to be, both children discover the importance of their own stories in writing their futures.

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Vickie Saucier-Nadeau

Fear of judgement. Fear of failure. Those haunting thoughts follow young singer/songwriter Lea Freeman as she moves to Trinity Bay with her father after the loss of her beloved mother. As she takes this leap of faith and decides to embrace her new world, she starts to think she has lost her mind as a young man's voice emerges in the house. James, he calls himself. Is he real? Is James the fruit of her imagination, or is he perhaps all she'd been waiting for?

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Jan Thornhill

Behold the most despised bird in human history! So begins Jan Thornhill’s riveting, beautifully illustrated story of the House Sparrow. She traces the history of this perky little bird, one of the most adaptable creatures on Earth, from its beginnings in the Middle East to its spread with the growth of agriculture into India, North Africa and Europe. Everywhere the House Sparrow went, it competed with humans for grain, becoming such a pest that in some places “sparrow catcher” became an actual job and bounties were paid to those who got rid of it. But not everyone hated the House Sparrow, and in 1852, fifty pairs were released in New York City. In no time at all, the bird had spread from coast to coast. Then suddenly, at the turn of the century, as cars took over from horses and there was less grain to be found, its numbers began to decline. As our homes, gardens, cities and farmland have changed, providing fewer nesting and feeding opportunities, the House Sparrow’s numbers have begun to decline again — though in England and Holland this decline appears to be slowing. Perhaps this clever little bird is simply adapting once more. This fascinating book includes the life history of the House Sparrow and descriptions of how the Ancient Egyptians fed it to the animals they later mummified, how it traveled to Great Britain as a stowaway on ships carrying Roman soldiers, and how its cousin, the Eurasian Tree Sparrow, was almost eradicated in China when Mao declared war on it. A wealth of back matter material is also supplied.

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Rajeev Pundir

Chiya is born and brought up in a wealthy business-class family. When her mom Rini, a highly ambitious woman, tries to fix her marriage with a millionaire divorcee, quite senior to her in age, she refuses categorically. As a result an ugly argument ensues between them. Chiya's life turns upside down when Rini reveals an unpleasant secret pertaining to her life during the heat of the conflict. Then she embarks on a mission-the sole aim of her life. What was that secret and the mission thereupon? To find, explore the novel-Song of A Flying Sparrow-a tale of emotions, love, betrayal, ambitions, greed, cynicism and twisted relations.

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Takashi Matsuoka

Once in a great while a new novelist comes along who dazzles us with rare eloquence and humanity, with flawless storytelling and a unique understanding of another place and time. Takashi Matsuoka is just such a writer. His magnificent new novel, set amid the violence and beauty of nineteenth-century Japan, takes us beyond the epic tradition of James Clavell’s Shogun and into a majestic realm of samurai and geishas, ninjas and Zen masters. Brilliantly imagined, gloriously written, Cloud of Sparrows is at once a sweeping historical adventure and a love story of almost unbearable poignancy. It is storytelling on the grand scale from a novelist of astounding depth and grace. Cloud of Sparrows It is the dawn of the New Year, 1861. After two centuries of isolation, Japan has been forced to open its doors to the West, igniting a clash of cultures and generations. And as foreign ships threaten to rain destruction on the Shogun’s castle in Edo, a small group of American missionaries has chosen this time to spread the word of their God. Among them, Emily Gibson, a woman seeking redemption from a tormented past, and Matthew Stark, a cold-eyed killer with one more death on his mind. Neither realizes that their future in Japan has already been foreseen. For a young nobleman, Lord Genji, has dreamt that his life will be saved by an outsider in the New Year. Widely reviled as a dilettante, Lord Genji has one weapon with which to inspire awe. In his family, one in every generation is said to have the gift of prophecy. And what Lord Genji sees has struck fear in many around him. As the Shogun’s secret police chief plots Genji’s death--and the utter destruction of his entire clan--the young and untried lord must prove that he is more than the handsome womanizer of legend, famed lover of Edo’s most celebrated geisha, Lady Heiko, and that his prophetic powers are no mere fairy tale. Forced to escape from Edo and flee to his ancestral stronghold, the spectacular Cloud of Sparrows Castle, Genji joins his fate with Emily and Stark, unaware of the dark forces that drive them. Together with Genji’s uncle, Lord Shigeru, a legendary swordsman knee-deep in the blood of his own kin, and the enigmatic Lady Heiko, the unlikely band embarks on a harrowing journey through a landscape bristling with danger--to prepare for a final battle. Here, on a snowscape stained with blood, horror will mix with wonder, secrets will unravel, and love will duel with vengeance--as East and West, flesh and spirit, past and future, collide in ways no one--least of all Genji--could have imagined. From the Hardcover edition.

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Marie Thompson

How does a family dig itself out of despair and destitution? In the case of the Chester family, it was through a woman named Lili. Maggie had few expectations from life. Her father and brother were lost to war, leaving her in crushing poverty in Londons East End with her dominating mother, Rose. WWI ended. Frank Chester, a handsome Cockney, swept pretty Maggie off her feet, and they were married with dreams of a bright future. Soon, paucity and Roses relentless interference turned hope to despair, and Maggie stood alone against Franks violent outbursts and infidelity. WWII broke out. London was in ruins. Frank helped free beautiful Lili Stewart from rubble where her wealthy husband and father lay lifeless beside her. He was captivated and pursued her. Mourning the loss of her loved ones and acutely aware of her physical scars, Lili resisted, but Frank was persistent and won her heart. He moved in with her, abandoning Maggie and their six children without culpability. The children were traumatized when Maggie died of cancer, and Frank and Lili took them in, leaving Rose filled with hatred. The children and Frank felt no connection, and anxiety deepened. Lili witnessed Franks rage for the first time; she became the childrens champion and gave Frank an ultimatum. Fearful of losing her, he took the first tenuous step toward redemption. Confronted by the adult children, he shared his own torment and underwent a catharsis, but the journey was plagued with challenges and tragedies. The family finally left the past behind and moved forward to love and salvation.

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Karen Hesse

In June 1942, seven months after attacking Pearl Harbor, the Japanese navy invaded Alaska's Aleutian Islands. For nine thousand years the Aleut people had lived and thrived on these treeless, windswept lands. Within days of the first attack, the entire native population living west of Unimak Island was gathered up and evacuated to relocation centers in the dense forests of Alaska's Southeast. With resilience, compassion, and humor, the Aleuts responded to the sorrows of upheaval and dislocation. This is the story of Vera, a young Aleut caught up in the turmoil of war. It chronicles her struggles to survive and to keep community and heritage intact despite harsh conditions in an alien environment.

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Takashi Matsuoka

Once in a great while a new novelist comes along who dazzles us with rare eloquence and humanity, with flawless storytelling and a unique understanding of another place and time. Takashi Matsuoka is just such a writer. His magnificent new novel, set amid the violence and beauty of nineteenth-century Japan, takes us beyond the epic tradition of James Clavell’s Shogun and into a majestic realm of samurai and geishas, ninjas and Zen masters. Brilliantly imagined, gloriously written, Cloud of Sparrows is at once a sweeping historical adventure and a love story of almost unbearable poignancy. It is storytelling on the grand scale from a novelist of astounding depth and grace. Cloud of Sparrows It is the dawn of the New Year, 1861. After two centuries of isolation, Japan has been forced to open its doors to the West, igniting a clash of cultures and generations. And as foreign ships threaten to rain destruction on the Shogun’s castle in Edo, a small group of American missionaries has chosen this time to spread the word of their God. Among them, Emily Gibson, a woman seeking redemption from a tormented past, and Matthew Stark, a cold-eyed killer with one more death on his mind. Neither realizes that their future in Japan has already been foreseen. For a young nobleman, Lord Genji, has dreamt that his life will be saved by an outsider in the New Year. Widely reviled as a dilettante, Lord Genji has one weapon with which to inspire awe. In his family, one in every generation is said to have the gift of prophecy. And what Lord Genji sees has struck fear in many around him. As the Shogun’s secret police chief plots Genji’s death--and the utter destruction of his entire clan--the young and untried lord must prove that he is more than the handsome womanizer of legend, famed lover of Edo’s most celebrated geisha, Lady Heiko, and that his prophetic powers are no mere fairy tale. Forced to escape from Edo and flee to his ancestral stronghold, the spectacular Cloud of Sparrows Castle, Genji joins his fate with Emily and Stark, unaware of the dark forces that drive them. Together with Genji’s uncle, Lord Shigeru, a legendary swordsman knee-deep in the blood of his own kin, and the enigmatic Lady Heiko, the unlikely band embarks on a harrowing journey through a landscape bristling with danger--to prepare for a final battle. Here, on a snowscape stained with blood, horror will mix with wonder, secrets will unravel, and love will duel with vengeance--as East and West, flesh and spirit, past and future, collide in ways no one--least of all Genji--could have imagined. From the Hardcover edition.

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Marian Hale

"The Wynns are an unforgettable family. The details of their struggle to survive the Great Depression will linger long after the last page has been read."-Ann M. Martin, winner of the Newbery Honor for A Corner of the Universe A stunning debut novel about the true meaning of home Sadie Wynn doesn't want a new life; her old one suits her just fine. But times are hard in drought-plagued Missouri, and Daddy thinks they'll be better off in Texas. Sadie hates this strange new place, where even children must work at the cannery to help make ends meet and people are rude to her disabled father. Yet when trouble comes, it is the kindness of these new neighbors that helps the family make it through. And no one helps more than Dollie, a red-headed chatterbox of a girl who just might become a good friend-if Sadie gives her half a chance. The Truth About Sparrows is a 2005 Bank Street - Best Children's Book of the Year.

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Philip Child

A raw and trying account of faith and family plunged into the fires and futility of the First World War. A modern classic, this is a novel rich in compassion and firm in its belief in the human spirit.

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Stephen King

Set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine A “wondrously frightening” (Publishers Weekly) tale of terror and #1 national bestseller about a writer’s pseudonym that comes alive and destroys everyone on the path that leads to the man who created him. Thad Beaumont is a writer, and for a dozen years he has secretly published violent bestsellers under the name of George Stark. But Thad is a healthier and happier man now, the father of infant twins, and starting to write as himself again. He no longer needs George Stark and so, with nationwide publicity, the pseudonym is retired. But George Stark won’t go willingly. And now Thad would like to say he is innocent. He’d like to say he has nothing to do with the twisted imagination that produced his bestselling novels. He’d like to say he has nothing to do with the series of monstrous murders that keep coming closer to his home. But how can Thad deny the ultimate embodiment of evil that goes by the name he gave it—and signs its crimes with Thad’s bloody fingerprints? The Dark Half is “a chiller” (The New York Times Book Review), so real and fascinating that you’ll find yourself squirming in Stephen King’s heart-stopping, blood-curdling grip—and loving every minute of it.

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Grant McLachlan

Sparrow is a seldom-heard but uplifting story of the Sparrows – the Battle of Britain gunners who defended Timor as part of Sparrow Force. It is the story of Charlie McLachlan’s war: a triumph of stubborn Scottish defiance and laconic Aussie genius over the relentless violence of man and nature. From the Rudolph Hess crash-landing to the atom bomb, from history’s last bayonet charge to the war’s greatest aerial bombardment, Charlie McLachlan survives and bears witness to some of the landmark days of World War II. At one time or other in his four-year ordeal he is fired upon by the armies, navies and/or air forces of Germany, Japan, Australia, the Netherlands, Great Britain and the United States of America – pretty much everyone but the Russians. He defies or evades the ravages of tropical ulcers, tropical heat, alpine cold, gangrene, cholera, malaria, beriberi, dysentery, mosquitoes, crocodiles, snakes, sharks, scorpions, sadistic Sikhs, Japanese hellships, falling coconuts, flying shrapnel, beatings, beheadings, bullets, bombs, bayonets, torpedoes, a crushed leg, a fractured skull, malnutrition and premature cremation. He’s presumed dead by the British Army, left for dead by Japanese guards, and declared dead by a Dutch-Javanese doctor. Yet through it all Charlie soldiers on. Half a world away, his wife Mary, fashioned from the same mental granite, stoically awaits his return. Not even an official telegram confirming the near-certainty of Charlie’s death, or later rumours of his torture, can shake her iron faith. *** Sparrow Force – the force that defended Timor in 1942 – was one of Australia’s most successful military units. At the lowest point in the Second World War these soldiers - equipped with First World War weapons and cut off from Australia - waged a commando campaign that held off Japan’s most successful and elite special force. Low in medicine and ammunition, they built an improvised radio that regained contact with their homeland. It was the first good news of the war for the Allies. Sparrow Force was unique. They were the first force to defeat Japan in battle, and they were the last to be captured. Those who escaped to pursue a guerrilla campaign spent more time in combat against the Japanese than any other Allied unit. They were set up to fail; instead they endured, defied, and succeeded. Newsreels were made, victories were recorded, medals were awarded, and Australia’s morale was elevated. As Winston Churchill famously said, “They alone did not surrender.”

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Ellen Herrick

With echoes of the alchemy of Practical Magic, the lushness of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt, and the darkly joyful wickedness of the Witches of Eastwick, Ellen Herrick’s debut novel spins an enchanting love story about a place where magic whispers just beneath the surface and almost anything is possible, if you aren’t afraid to listen. The Sparrow Sisters are as tightly woven into the seaside New England town of Granite Point as the wild sweet peas that climb the stone walls along the harbor. Sorrel, Nettie and Patience are as colorful as the beach plums on the dunes and as mysterious as the fog that rolls into town at dusk. Patience is the town healer and when a new doctor settles into Granite Point he brings with him a mystery so compelling that Patience is drawn to love him, even as she struggles to mend him. But when Patience Sparrow’s herbs and tinctures are believed to be implicated in a local tragedy, Granite Point is consumed by a long-buried fear—and its three hundred year old history resurfaces as a modern day witch-hunt threatens. The plants and flowers, fruit trees and high hedges begin to wither and die, and the entire town begins to fail; fishermen return to the harbor empty-handed, and blight descends on the old elms that line the lanes. It seems as if Patience and her town are lost until the women of Granite Point band together to save the Sparrow. As they gather, drawing strength from each other, will they be able to turn the tide and return life to Granite Point? The Sparrow Sisters is a beautiful, haunting, and thoroughly mesmerizing novel that will capture your imagination.

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Suzanne Harper

How do you ignore a ghost? Sparrow Delaney absolutely, positively does not want to be a medium like her six older sisters, her mother, and her grandmother. She does not want to see, hear, smell, or talk to ghosts. If she sticks to her rules and doesn't let anyone know that she can do all those things—everywhere, all the time—Sparrow just might pass as a normal tenth grader at her new high school. She makes a new best friend and meets an irritatingly appealing guy in her history class. But when another boy catches her eye, all Sparrow's dreams of being ordinary go up in smoke. Because this boy is a dead one—a persistent, charming, infuriating ghost, who won't let her be until she agrees to help him Move On.

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Madeleine Thien

Winner of the 2016 Scotiabank Giller Prize and the Governor General's Literary Award for Fiction, shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize, and longlisted for the 2017 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction, this extraordinary novel tells the story of three musicians in China before, during and after the Tiananmen Square protests of 1989. Madeleine Thien's new novel is breathtaking in scope and ambition even as it is hauntingly intimate. With the ease and skill of a master storyteller, Thien takes us inside an extended family in China, showing us the lives of two successive generations--those who lived through Mao's Cultural Revolution in the mid-twentieth century; and the children of the survivors, who became the students protesting in Tiananmen Square in 1989, in one of the most important political moments of the past century. With exquisite writing sharpened by a surprising vein of wit and sly humour, Thien has crafted unforgettable characters who are by turns flinty and headstrong, dreamy and tender, foolish and wise. At the centre of this epic tale, as capacious and mysterious as life itself, are enigmatic Sparrow, a genius composer who wishes desperately to create music yet can find truth only in silence; his mother and aunt, Big Mother Knife and Swirl, survivors with captivating singing voices and an unbreakable bond; Sparrow's ethereal cousin Zhuli, daughter of Swirl and storyteller Wen the Dreamer, who as a child witnesses the denunciation of her parents and as a young woman becomes the target of denunciations herself; and headstrong, talented Kai, best friend of Sparrow and Zhuli, and a determinedly successful musician who is a virtuoso at masking his true self until the day he can hide no longer. Here, too, is Kai's daughter, the ever-questioning mathematician Marie, who pieces together the tale of her fractured family in present-day Vancouver, seeking a fragile meaning in the layers of their collective story. With maturity and sophistication, humour and beauty, a huge heart and impressive understanding, Thien has crafted a novel that is at once beautifully intimate and grandly political, rooted in the details of daily life inside China, yet transcendent in its universality.

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Sarah Moon

Sparrow has always had a difficult time making friends. She would always rather have stayed home on the weekends with her mother, an affluent IT Executive at a Manhattan bank, reading, or watching the birds, than playing with other kids. And that's made school a lonely experience for her. It's made LIFE a lonely experience. But when the one teacher who really understood her -- Mrs. Wexler, the school librarian, a woman who let her eat her lunch in the library office rather than hide in a bathroom stall, a woman who shared her passion for novels and knew just the ones she'd love -- is killed in a freak car accident, Sparrow's world unravels and she's found on the roof of her school in an apparent suicide attempt. With the help of an insightful therapist, Sparrow finally reveals the truth of her inner life. And it's here that she discovers an outlet in Rock & Roll music...

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James T. Sparrow

Although common wisdom and much scholarship assume that "big government" gained its foothold in the United States under the auspices of the New Deal during the Great Depression, in fact it was the Second World War that accomplished this feat. Indeed, as the federal government mobilized for war it grew tenfold, quickly dwarfing the New Deal's welfare programs. Warfare State shows how the federal government vastly expanded its influence over American society during World War II. Equally important, it looks at how and why Americans adapted to this expansion of authority. Through mass participation in military service, war work, rationing, price control, income taxation, and the war bond program, ordinary Americans learned to live with the warfare state. They accepted these new obligations because the government encouraged all citizens to think of themselves as personally connected to the battle front, linking their every action to the fate of the combat soldier. As they worked for the American Soldier, Americans habituated themselves to the authority of the government. Citizens made their own counter-claims on the state-particularly in the case of industrial workers, women, African Americans, and most of all, the soldiers. Their demands for fuller citizenship offer important insights into the relationship between citizen morale, the uses of patriotism, and the legitimacy of the state in wartime. World War II forged a new bond between citizens, nation, and government. Warfare State tells the story of this dramatic transformation in American life.

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Joyce Magnin

The Prayers of Agnes Sparrow is the story of an unusual woman, Agnes Sparrow. No longer able or willing to leave her home, where she is cared for by her long-suffering sister Griselda, Agnes has committed her life to the one thing she can do—besides eat. Agnes Sparrow prays and when Agnes prays things happen, including major miracles of the cancer, ulcer-healing variety along with various minor miracles not the least of which is the recovery of lost objects and a prize-winning pumpkin. The rural residents of Bright's Pond are so enamored with Agnes they plan to have a sign erected on the interstate that reads, "Welcome to Bright's Pond, Home of Agnes Sparrow." This is something Agnes doesn't want and sends Griselda to fight city hall. Griselda's petitions are shot down and the sign plans press forward until a stranger comes to town looking for his miracle from Agnes. The truth of Agnes's odd motivation comes out when the town reels after the murder of a beloved community member. How could Agnes allow such evil in their midst? Didn't she know? Well, the prayers of Agnes Sparrow have more to do with Agnes than God. Agnes has been praying to atone for a sin committed when she was a child. After some tense days, the townsfolk, Griselda, and Agnes decide they all need to find their way back to the true source of the miracles—God.

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Ibrahim Aslan

Set in the author's own Nile-side neighborhood of Warraq, Aslan's second novel, the first to be translated and published in English, chronicles the daily rhythm of life of rural migrants to Cairo and their complex webs of familial and neighborly relations over half a century. It opens with the mysterious disappearance of the tiny grandmother, Hanem, who is over 100 years old and is last seen by her daughter-in-law Dalal. Dalal does not have the heart to tell Hanem that her grown children Nargis and Abdel Reheem have both been dead for some time. Her grandson Mr. Abdalla, who has children of his own and not a few flecks of gray in his hair, reluctantly sets out for their home village to search for her, embarking on a bittersweet odyssey into his family's past and a confrontation with his own aging. In an elliptical narrative, Aslan limns a series of vignettes that mimic the workings of memory, moving backward and forward in time and held together by a series of recurrent figures and images. There is Abdalla's father, the tragic al-Bahey Uthman; his quirky and earthy uncle Abdel Reheem; and his sweet mother, Nargis, who dies with her simplest desires unfulfilled. Aslan's moving portrait of the quotidian dramas that constitute the lives of ordinary Egyptians is untainted by populist pretensions or belittling romanticism, and full of the humor and heartbreaking pathos that have become trademarks of the author's style.

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Jason Matthews

Red Sparrow is now a major motion picture starring Jennifer Lawrence and Joel Edgerton! The “exciting conclusion” (Entertainment Weekly) in the New York Times bestselling Red Sparrow Trilogy has Russian counterintelligence chief Dominika Egorova and her lover, CIA agent Nate Nash, on the hunt for a Russian agent working in the US government. With a plot ripped from tomorrow’s headlines, Jason Matthews is “one of America’s most readable spy novelists” (The Washington Post Book World), and his high-powered, seductive third novel not only continues the dangerous entanglements of Dominika and Nate but reveals with chilling authenticity how Russian espionage can place agents in the most sensitive positions of power. The Kremlin’s Candidate opens with Russian president Vladimir Putin planning the covert assassination of a high-ranking US official with the intention of replacing him with a mole whom Russian intelligence has cultivated for more than fifteen years. Catching wind of this plot, Dominika, Nate, and their CIA colleagues must unmask the traitor before he or she is able to reveal that Dominika has been spying for years on behalf of the CIA. Any leak, any misstep, will expose her as a CIA asset and result in a one-way trip to a Moscow execution cellar. Ultimately, the lines of danger converge on the spectacular billion-dollar presidential palace on the Black Sea during a power weekend with Putin’s inner circle. Does Nate sacrifice himself to save Dominika? Does Dominika forfeit herself to protect Nate? Do they go down together? This dazzling finale to Jason Matthews’s New York Times bestselling Red Sparrow Trilogy “delivers a wallop on all fronts, from adrenaline-charged action to dark political intrigue to gripping emotional stakes…Readers will finish the book, but their memories of Matthews’s brilliant and fearless heroine will linger well past the final page” (Kirkus Reviews, starred review). The Kremlin’s Candidate is “a stellar conclusion…racing to a heart-pounding and unexpected resolution” (Publishers Weekly, starred review).

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Jane Sparrow

As with many people-oriented initiatives, employee engagement remains an emerging science with as many advocates as detractors. In The Culture Builders Jane Sparrow shares the insight of her research and experience into how companies are creating an engaged workforce. Along the way she looks at the evidence, the case for engagement and how organizations are measuring and defining it. Having an engagement strategy is merely a first step and so the book explores how to enable the manager-as-engager. Alongside the practical models and the guidance, there are stories and examples from leaders and organizations allowing you to learn, amongst other things, about the strong sense of purpose felt in John Lewis Partnership; the importance Innocence places on values; how Sony has used visual metaphors to give context and strategic direction and how MGM Resorts targets engagement strategies to the needs of specific employee groups. The need for sustained employee performance has been put into sharp focus in recent years. The Culture Builders is a book that provides the theory and practice to connect employee engagement to long-term performance. Simply reading it won’t guarantee that performance. Reading it, learning and applying the lessons it offers, will dramatically improve your chances.

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Arthur Ransome

'Swallows and Amazons for ever!' The Walker children - also known as Captain John, Mate Susan, Able-Seaman Titty, and Ship's Boy Roger - set sail on the Swallow and head for Wild Cat Island. There they camp under open skies, swim in clear water and go fishing for their dinner. But their days are disturbed by the Blackett sisters, the fierce Amazon pirates. The Swallows and Amazons decide to battle it out, and so begins a summer of unforgettable discoveries and incredible adventures. BACKSTORY: Crack the Swallow's code and learn all about the adventurous author.

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Marilyn Land

The friendship between five-year-olds Sara Miller and Judy Levine begins in the summer of 1941, when their families move into adjoining row houses in Washington, D.C. Almost immediately, the United States enters World War II, and their childhood is thrust into a world dominated by the consequences of history. When asked to help their sick friend, Su Ling, keep up with her studies as she recuperates from rheumatic fever, her grandmother, An Lei, teaches them the ancient Chinese game of Mahjong, destined to become an invariable part of their lives as it merges cultures, love, and friendship. Separated for the first time when they enter college, their personal choices, shaped and impacted by half a century of unparalleled wars, loss, and heartbreak, only bring them closer together, as they marry, raise their families, and pursue their chosen careers. Their lifelong journey, caught in a web of intricate and surprising twists of fate, surfaces in the public eye when a Ukrainian farm girl inadvertently unlocks a thirty-five-year mystery that has haunted them since their graduation from high school. From coast to coast and across the globe, their heartwarming and compelling story confirms the powerful bond of friendship.

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D. A. Keeley

When U.S. Customs and Border Protection Agent Peyton Cote is called to a mysterious burned-out cabin, she has no idea it will lead her to reconnect with Dr. Sherry Duvall. Their re-acquaintance, however, comes under difficult circumstances—Sherry's brother is accused of murder, and her father and mother have just died in a murder-suicide. On the home front, single-mom Peyton is waging a different battle—helping son Tommy fight his learning disability. Amidst all this, a man is lurking who has only revenge on his mind, the kind of revenge that could cripple the nation and leave even those close to him as nothing more than fallen sparrows. Praise: “[Keeley’s] tough but compassionate heroine triumphs against the odds.”—Kirkus Reviews “This edgy and emotional thrill ride will captivate readers."—RT Book Reviews

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Richard Adams

"Thousands and thousands of people will love this book!" THE BOSTON GLOBE A lyrical, engrossing tale, by the author of WATERSHIP DOWN, Richard Adams creates a lyrical and engrossing tale, a remarkable journey into the hearts and minds of two canine heroes, Snitter and Rowf, fugitives from the horrors of an animal research center who escape into the isolation--and terror--of the wilderness.

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Mirela Roznoveanu

In Mirela Roznoveanu's new book of fiction, human love is everywhere but strangely hard to find. Love animates a world where the tangled web of sexuality, commitment, language, place, and history enthralls us with its tantalizing detours, its cruel pretenders, and its unexpected pleasures. These tumultuous pages introduce us to people we can instantly recognize and never forget. From adventures that vividly signal a lifetime's meaning each returns with something new-something utterly different from that which was sought. Here in her first major work in English, we find the pulsing, streaming vision of time, place, history and character that distinguishes Roznoveanu's work in her native Romanian. Roznoveanu restores a visionary spirit lost to English for two or more generations. These stories come to us in the circuitous wake of the great early modernists, offering prodigious healing power for the grave psychic wounds that have afflicted the human condition since the crucial turning point of 1945. The Life Manager and Other Stories scintillates with cascades of luminous images and narrative reversals that seize our attention and don't let go. This is a book to return to again and again for its endlessly intriguing glimpses of the elusive peace and joy our souls thirst for.

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Håkan Rydin,John K. Jeglum

Peatlands form important landscape elements in many parts of the world and play significant roles for biodiversity and global carbon balance. This new edition has been fully revised and updated, documenting the latest advances in areas such as microbial processes and relations between biological processes and hydrology. As well as thoroughly referencing the latest research, the authors expose a rich older literature where an immense repository of natural history has accumulated. The Biology of Peatlands starts with an overview of the main peatland types (marsh, swamp, fen, and bog), before examining the entire range of biota present (microbes, invertebrates, plants, and vertebrates), together with their specific adaptations to peatland habitats. Detailed coverage is devoted to the genus Sphagnum, the most important functional plant group in northern peatlands, although tropical and southern hemisphere peatlands are also covered. Throughout the book the interactions between organisms and environmental conditions (especially wetness, availability of oxygen, and pH) are emphasized, with chapters on the physical and chemical characteristics of peat, the role of peat as an archive of past vegetation and climate, and peatland succession and development. Several other key factors and processes are then examined, including hydrology and nutrient cycling. The fascinating peatland landforms in different parts of the world are described, together with theories on how they have developed. Human interactions with peatlands are considered in terms of management, conservation, and restoration. A final chapter, new to this edition, focuses on the role of peatlands as sources or sinks for the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane, and the influences of climate change on peatlands. This timely and accessible text is suitable for students and researchers of peatland ecology, as well as providing an authoritative overview for professional ecologists and conservation biologists.

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Claire Drewery

Taking on the neglected issue of the short story's relationship to literary Modernism, Claire Drewery examines works by Katherine Mansfield, Dorothy Richardson, May Sinclair, and Virginia Woolf. Drewery argues that the short story as a genre is preoccupied with transgressing boundaries, and thus offers an ideal platform from which to examine the Modernist fascination with the liminal. Embodying both liberation and restriction, liminal spaces on the one hand enable challenges to traditional cultural and personal identities, while on the other hand they entail the inevitable negative consequences of occupying the position of the outsider: marginality, psychosis, and death. Mansfield, Richardson, Sinclair, and Woolf all exploit this paradox in their short fiction, which typically explores literal and psychological borderline states that are resistant to rational analysis. Thus, their short stories offered these authors an opportunity to represent the borders of unconsciousness and to articulate meaning while also conveying a sense of that which is unsayable. Through their concern with liminality, Drewery shows, these writers contribute significantly to the Modernist aesthetic that interrogates identity, the construction of the self, and the relationship between the individual and society.

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Tubten Khétsun

Born in 1941, Tubten Khétsun is a nephew of the Gyatso Tashi Khendrung, one of the senior government officials taken prisoner after the Tibetan peoples' uprising of March 10, 1959. Khétsun himself was arrested while defending the Dalai Lama's summer palace, and after four years in prisons and labor camps, he spent close to two decades in Lhasa as a requisitioned laborer and "class enemy." In this eloquent autobiography, Khétsun describes what life was like during those troubled years. His account is one of the most dispassionate, detailed, and readable firsthand descriptions yet published of Tibet under the Communist occupation. Khétsun talks of his prison experiences as well as the state of civil society following his release, and he offers keenly observed accounts of well-known events, such as the launch of the Cultural Revolution, as well as lesser-known aspects of everyday life in occupied Lhasa. Since Communist China continues to occupy Tibet, the facts of this era remain obscure, and few of those who lived through it have recorded their experiences at length. Khétsun's story will captivate any reader seeking a refreshingly human account of what occurred during the Maoists' shockingly brutal regime.

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Carl E. Bock,Jane H. Bock

In 1540 Francisco Vasquez de Coronado introduced the first domestic livestock to the American Southwest. Over the subsequent four centuries, cattle, horses, and sheep have created a massive ecological experiment on these arid grasslands, changing them in ways we can never know with certainty. The Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch in the high desert of southeastern Arizona is an 8,000-acre sanctuary where grazing has been banned since 1968. In this spirited account of thirty years of research at the ranch, Carl and Jane Bock summarize the results of their fieldwork, which was aimed at understanding the dynamics of grasslands in the absence of livestock. The View from Bald Hill provides an intimate look at the natural history of this unique site and illuminates many issues pertaining to the protection and restoration of our nation's grasslands.

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Jincy Willett

In these wonderfully funny and poignant stories, Willett's eccentric, complex characters think and do the unconventional. Soft, euphonic women gradually grow old; weak, unhappy men confront love and their own mortality; and abominable children desperately try to grow up with grace. With a unique voice and dry humor, Willett gives us a new insight into human existence, showing us those specific moments in relationships when life suddenly becomes visible. Critically acclaimed when it was first published in 1987, Jenny and the Jaws of Life is being brought back due to popular demand. It's a timeless collection filled with a certain freshness and wit that ring just as loudly today.

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Ahmed Fagih

These are thirty of the finest short stories selected from the large out put of the master of the craft Dr Ahmed Fagih, to give some insight of the writer and his works.