CD Audio Books
8.2 hrs • 5/16/2013Listen
“One day I will tell you the story of my life,” promises Emma Brockes’s mother, “and you will be amazed.”
Despite her mother’s tales of a rustic childhood in South Africa and bohemian years in London, Brockes grew up knowing that some crucial pieces of the past were left unspoken. A mystery to her friends and family, Brockes’ mother, Paula, was glamorous, no-nonsense, and totally out of place in their quaint English village. What compelled her to emigrate to England was never explained, nor what empowered her tremendous strengths and strange fears. Looking to unearth the truth after Paula’s death, Brockes begins a dangerous journey into the land, and life, her mother fled years before.
She Left Me the Gun: My Mother’s Life Before Me is a tale of true transformation, the story of a young woman who reinvented herself so completely that her previous life seemed to simply vanish, and of a daughter who transcends her mother’s fears and reclaims an abandoned past. Brockes soon learns Paula’s father was a drunk megalomaniac who terrorized Paula and her seven half-siblings for years. He is ultimately taken to court and vindicated of all charges, but not before Paula shoots him five times, and fails to kill him. She books passage to London, never to return.
She Left Me the Gun carries Brockes to South Africa to meet her seven aunts and uncles, to weigh their stories against her mother’s silences, and to understand one of the world’s most beautiful yet bloody countries. Brockes learns of the violent pathologies and racial propaganda in which her grandfather was inculcated, sees the mine shafts and train yards where he worked as an itinerant mechanic, and finds buried in government archives the startling court records that prove he was secretly imprisoned for murder years before he first married.
An extraordinary work of psychological suspense and forensic memoir, She Left Me the Gun chronicles Brockes’ efforts to walk the knife edge between understanding her mother’s unspeakable traumas and embracing the happiness she chose for herself and her daughter.>Learn More
10.6 hrs • 5/16/2013Listen
Journalist Jon Mooallem has watched his little daughter’s world overflow with animals, butterfly pajamas, appliquéd owls, while the actual world she’s inheriting slides into a great storm of extinction. Half of all species could disappear by the end of the century, and scientists now concede that most of America’s endangered animals will survive only if conservationists keep rigging the world around them in their favor. So Mooallem ventures into the field, often taking his daughter with him, to move beyond childlike fascination and make those creatures feel more real. Wild Ones is a tour through our environmental moment and the eccentric cultural history of people and wild animals in America that inflects it, from Thomas Jefferson’s celebrations of early abundance to the turn-of-the-last-century origins of the teddy bear to the whale-loving hippies of the 1970s. In America, Wild Ones discovers, wildlife has always inhabited the terrain of our imagination as much as the actual land.
The journey is framed by the stories of three modern-day endangered species: the polar bear, victimized by climate change and ogled by tourists outside a remote, northern town; the little-known Lange’s metalmark butterfly, foundering on a shred of industrialized land near San Francisco; and the whooping crane as it’s led on a months-long migration by costumed men in ultralight airplanes. The wilderness Wild Ones navigates is a scrappy, disorderly place where amateur conservationists do grueling, sometimes preposterous looking work; where a marketer maneuvers to control the polar bear’s image; and Martha Stewart turns up to film those beasts for her show on the Hallmark Channel. Our most comforting ideas about nature unravel. In their place, Mooallem forges a new and affirming vision of the human animal and the wild ones as kindred creatures on an imperfect planet.
With propulsive curiosity and searing wit, and without the easy moralizing and nature worship of environmental journalism’s older guard, Wild Ones merges reportage, science, and history into a humane and endearing meditation on what it means to live in, and bring a life into, a broken world.>Learn More
12.0 hrs • 5/15/2013Listen
The Conduct of Saints portrays a battleground on which power, God, sex, and the devil collide in the impoverished city of Rome during May and June of 1945.
The German occupation of the Eternal City has ended, the war in Europe is over, the atomic bomb has yet to fall on Japan, and Rome is under the jurisdiction of the victors: the American, British, and French Allied Control Commission.
An American Vatican prelate and lawyer, Brendan Doherty, is involved in two crusades. Abhorring capital punishment, he means to avert the execution of the Nazi collaborator Pietro Koch. Also, as devil’s advocate, Doherty intends to prove the hypocrisy of Alessandro Serenelli, the man who forty years before murdered Maria Goretti. Converted by a vision, Serenelli has spent his life, in prison and out, promoting the beatification of his victim.
Doherty—memory tormented, hard drinking, both angry and compassionate, a moral street fighter for what he is sure is right—feels guilty for having done too little to save the city’s Jews from Auschwitz. He engages in his causes and quarrels with Rome’s pre–dolce vita, postwar society—people both fictional and historical, like Alessandro Serenelli, Maria Goretti, Pietro Koch, Pope Pius XII, and film director Luchino Visconti—until he comes to a reckoning with himself and with the serene, unshakable saint-maker Serenelli.>Learn More
11.0 hrs • 5/15/2013Listen
For twenty-one-year-old Gemma, life has never been normal. She knows nothing about her past and has been haunted by the same monsters in her nightmares for months. Unemotional and numb to life, she feels disconnected from everyone—until the very first day she cries. After that, nothing in her life is the same. Her emotions slowly begin to surface, and she starts experiencing love, happiness, and anger, feelings she never knew existed. But they leave her confused; she doesn’t know whether to embrace them or run away from them.
Her life only gets more complicated when she meets Alex. Sexy, arrogant, and secretive, Alex can get under Gemma’s skin like no one else, yet she’s drawn to him by an invisible connection she has no control over. She’s also seen him before—in her nightmares. Every part of Gemma’s mind is screaming at her to stay away from Alex, but every other part of her is begging to get close to him. But the closer she gets, the more she realizes Alex knows more about her than he first let on.
As secrets about her past unravel, Gemma’s life is threatened. She must figure out what’s going on before she winds up dead, but the only person she can turn to for answers is the one person she isn’t sure she can trust.>Learn More
7.5 hrs • 5/15/2013Listen
Captain Josie Corsino has selected Kyle Richards, a trusted and talented sergeant, to supervise a burglary task force in Hollywood division. While working that special detail, Richards is involved in a fatal shooting. He’s reluctant to be candid about his relationship with the man he killed, and that leads not only to uncovering his mysterious past but exposing Josie’s division to notoriety and a fiery assault.
As detectives investigate the shooting, Josie’s loyalty to her sergeant is second-guessed by her bureau chief, civil rights activists, and even a few of her police officers. Was the shooting justified, or did Sergeant Richards have another reason for killing the unlikely burglary suspect? Before that question can be answered, there’s a brutal murder in Hollywood in which Richards appears to be the most likely suspect. Josie wants to support her sergeant but finds herself questioning his actions and his motives.
Josie joins forces with Detective Red Behan and Lieutenant Marge Bailey to help solve the murder and determine if there is a link between the man Richards shot and the homicide victim. The trail leads from a boxing gym in east Los Angeles to LAPD’s office of the chief of police and finally back to Hollywood, where Josie discovers corrupt cops thriving within her police station.
At home, Josie is becoming impatient and distant with her husband and her son, who continue to make demands on her time. She also finds herself drawn to Sergeant Richards, creating even greater domestic turmoil.>Learn More
10.5 hrs • 5/15/2013Listen
Earth has been devastated by a massive solar flare. Now a small group of survivors fights to rebuild civilization.
Cities became ovens, grasslands seas of flame. As the touch of dawn swept westward across the spinning planet, its fiery finger killed everything in its path. Glaciers in Switzerland began to melt; floodwaters poured down on burning Alpine villages. Paris became a torch, then London. North of the Arctic Circle, Laplanders in their summer furs burst into flame as their reindeer collapsed and roasted on the smoking tundra.
The line of dawn raced westward across the Atlantic, but as it did, the sun dimmed as quickly as it had flared.
The Americas escaped the sun’s wrath … almost.>Learn More
12.0 hrs • 5/15/2013Listen
Orson Scott Card, bestselling author of Ender’s Game, teams up with Kathryn H. Kidd to launch an epic science fiction saga of space exploration—and a dramatic conflict between human and nonhuman intelligence.
On the Ark, a colony ship bound outward across the stars, not everyone is a volunteer—or even human. Lovelock is a capuchin monkey engineered from conception to be the perfect servant: intelligent, agile, and devoted to his owner. He is a “witness,” privileged to spend his days and nights recording the life of one of Earth’s most brilliant scientists via digital devices implanted behind his eyes.
But Lovelock is something special among witnesses. He’s a little smarter than most humans: smart enough to break through some of his conditioning, smart enough to feel the bonds of slavery—and want freedom.
Set against the awesome scope of interstellar space, and like Speaker for the Dead and Xenocide before it, Lovelock probes the provocative interface between humanity and another sentient species.>Learn More
10.0 hrs • 5/14/2013Listen
An outspoken centrist, Senator Snowe stunned Washington in February 2012 when she announced she would not seek a fourth term and offered a sharp rebuke to the Senate, citing the dispiriting gridlock and polarization. After serving in the legislative branch at the state and federal levels for forty years, including eighteen years in the US Senate, she explained that Washington wasn’t solving the big problems anymore.
In this timely call to action, she explores the roots of her belief in principled policy-making and bipartisan compromise. A leading moderate with a reputation for crossing the aisle, Senator Snowe proposes solutions for bridging the partisan divide in Washington, most notably through a citizens’ movement to hold elected officials accountable.
Senator Snowe recounts how the tragedies and triumphs of her personal story helped shape her political approach. Born in Augusta, Maine, Senator Snowe was orphaned at nine and raised by an aunt and uncle. When she was twenty-six, her husband, a Maine state representative, was killed in a car accident. Already dedicated to public service, she ran for and won her husband’s seat.
Fighting for Common Ground includes anecdotes from throughout Snowe’s career and addresses her working relationships with Presidents Reagan through Obama, Senator Ted Kennedy, Majority Leader Bob Dole, and many others. As a senior member of the powerful Senate Finance Committee, the high-profile Commerce and Intelligence Committees, and the Small Business Committee, Senator Snowe has been directly involved with the most talked-about legislative challenges of recent decades: the country’s response to 9/11, the 2008 financial crisis, the Affordable Care Act, the debt ceiling debacle, and much more.
Drawing on the lessons she’s learned as a policymaker and the frustration she shares with the American people about the government’s dwindling productivity, Senator Snowe passionately argues that the government has now lost its way, shows how this happened, and proposes ways for the world’s greatest deliberative body to once again fulfill its mission.>Learn More
14.5 hrs • 5/14/2013Listen
The riveting story of the submarine force that helped win World War II by ravaging Japan’s merchant fleet and destroying its economy
The War Below is a dramatic account of extraordinary heroism, ingenuity, and perseverance—and the vital role American submarines played in winning the Pacific War. Focusing on the unique stories of the submarines Silversides, Drum, and Tang—and the men who skippered and crewed them—James Scott takes readers beneath the waves to experience the thrill of a direct hit on a merchant ship and the terror of depth charge attacks. It’s a story filled with incredible feats of courage, including an emergency appendectomy performed with spoons by an inexperienced medic and the desperate struggle of sailors to escape from a flooded submarine stuck on the bottom, as well as tragic moments such as American submarines sinking an unmarked enemy ship carrying some 1,800 American POWs.
The casualty rate among submariners topped that of all military branches, a staggering six times higher than the surface navy. The war claimed almost one out of every five boats. But Japan was so ravaged by the loss of precious fuel and supplies that by war’s end, Japanese warships lay at anchor while hungry civilians ate sawdust. Scott paints an unforgettable picture of the dangerous life submariners endured, including the atrocious prison camps where the Japanese beat, tortured, and starved captured Allied troops. Based on more than one hundred interviews with submarine veterans and a review of more than three thousand pages of previously unpublished letters, diaries, and personal writings, The War Below allows readers to experience the Pacific War as never before.>Learn More
9.5 hrs • 5/14/2013Listen
Series: The Troubles Trilogy, book 2Read by Gerard Doyle
A torso in a suitcase looks like an impossible case, but Sean Duffy isn’t easily deterred, especially when his floundering love life leaves him in need of a distraction. So with Detective Constables McCrabban and McBride, he goes to work identifying the victim. The torso turns out to be all that’s left of an American tourist who once served in the US military. What was he doing in Northern Ireland in the midst of the 1982 Troubles? The trail leads to the doorstep of a beautiful, flame-haired, twentysomething widow, whose husband died at the hands of an IRA assassination team just a few months before. Suddenly Duffy is caught between his romantic instincts, gross professional misconduct, and powerful men he should know better than to mess with. These include British intelligence, the FBI, and local paramilitary death squads—enough to keep even the savviest detective busy. Duffy’s growing sense of self-doubt isn’t helping. But as a legendarily stubborn man, he doesn’t let that stop him from pursuing the case to its explosive conclusion.>Learn More
9.0 hrs • 5/14/2013Listen
Throughout history, thinkers from mathematicians to theologians have pondered the mysterious relationship between numbers and the nature of reality. In this fascinating book, Mario Livio tells the tale of a number at the heart of that mystery: phi, or 1.6180339887…This curious mathematical relationship, widely known as “The Golden Ratio,” was discovered by Euclid more than two thousand years ago because of its crucial role in the construction of the pentagram, to which magical properties had been attributed. Since then it has shown a propensity to appear in the most astonishing variety of places, from mollusk shells, sunflower florets, and rose petals to the shape of the galaxy. Psychological studies have investigated whether the Golden Ratio is the most aesthetically pleasing proportion extant, and it has been asserted that the creators of the Pyramids and the Parthenon employed it. It is believed to feature in works of art from Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa to Salvador Dali’s The Sacrament of the Last Supper, and poets and composers have used it in their works. It has even been found to be connected to the behavior of the stock market!
The Golden Ratio is a captivating journey through art and architecture, botany and biology, physics and mathematics. It tells the human story of numerous phi-fixated individuals, including the followers of Pythagoras who believed that this proportion revealed the hand of God; astronomer Johannes Kepler, who saw phi as the greatest treasure of geometry; such Renaissance thinkers as mathematician Leonardo Fibonacci of Pisa; and such masters of the modern world as Goethe, Cezanne, Bartok, and physicist Roger Penrose. Wherever his quest for the meaning of phi takes him, Mario Livio reveals the world as a place where order, beauty, and eternal mystery will always coexist.>Learn More
11.0 hrs • 5/7/2013Listen
What happens when you eat an apple? The answer is vastly more complex than you imagine.
Every apple contains thousands of antioxidants whose names, beyond a few like vitamin C, are unfamiliar to us, and each of these powerful chemicals has the potential to play an important role in supporting our health. They impact thousands upon thousands of metabolic reactions inside the human body. But calculating the specific influence of each of these chemicals isn’t nearly sufficient to explain the effect of the apple as a whole. Because almost every chemical can affect every other chemical, there is an almost infinite number of possible biological consequences—and that’s just from an apple.
Nutritional science, long stuck in a reductionist mindset, is at the cusp of a revolution. The traditional gold standard of nutrition research has been to study one chemical at a time in an attempt to determine its particular impact on the human body. These sorts of studies are helpful to food companies trying to prove there is a chemical in milk or prepackaged dinners that is “good” for us, but they provide little insight into the complexity of what actually happens in our bodies or how those chemicals contribute to our health.
In The China Study, T. Colin Campbell revolutionized the way we think about our food with the evidence that a whole food, plant-based diet is the healthiest way to eat. Now, in Whole, he explains the science behind that evidence, the ways our current scientific paradigm ignores the fascinating complexity of the human body, and why, if we have such overwhelming evidence that everything we think we know about nutrition is wrong, our eating habits haven’t changed.
Whole is an eye-opening, paradigm-changing journey through cutting-edge thinking on nutrition, a scientific tour de force with powerful implications for our health and for our world.>Learn More
11.5 hrs • 5/7/2013Listen
By the time his body hung from the gallows for his crimes at Harper’s Ferry, abolitionists had made John Brown a “holy martyr” in the fight against Southern slave owners. But Northern hatred for Southerners had been long in the making. Northern rage was born of the conviction that New England, whose spokesmen and militia had begun the American Revolution, should have been the leader of the new nation. Instead, they had been displaced by Southern “slavocrats” like Thomas Jefferson. And Northern envy only exacerbated the South’s greatest fear: race war. In the sixty years preceding the outbreak of civil war, Northern and Southern fanatics ramped up the struggle over slavery. By the time they had become intractable enemies, only the tragedy of a bloody civil war could save the Union.
In this riveting and character-driven history, one of America’s most respected historians traces the “disease in the public mind”—distortions of reality that seized large numbers of Americans—in the decades-long run-up to the Civil War.>Learn More
10.5 hrs • 5/7/2013ListenA Poisoned Pen Press mysteryRead by Tom Taylorson
Night Terrors is the third in the critically acclaimed mystery series featuring psychologist and trauma expert Daniel Rinaldi.
In the midst of a brutally cold winter in Pittsburgh, Daniel Rinaldi is asked to treat Lyle Barnes, a retired FBI profiler whose terrifying nocturnal visions cause him to wake up screaming. Barnes, after twenty years spent inside the minds of the nation’s worst serial killers, is not only falling apart psychologically but also finds himself the target of an unknown assassin, whose mounting list of victims is paralyzing the city. Hidden for his own protection by his former bureau colleagues, Barnes secretly escapes, drawing Daniel and a joint task force of the FBI and the Pittsburgh Police Department into a desperate manhunt. They must try to find the missing agent before the killer does.
Meanwhile, another case competes for Daniel’s attention. The mother of a young confessed killer, now in jail in nearby West Virginia and awaiting trial, is convinced that her son is innocent and appeals to Daniel for help. Against his better judgment, he becomes involved but soon realizes that much about the case is not as it appears.
As time is running out, Daniel uncovers an unexpected web of murder and madness that not only connects the two investigations but also puts his own life at risk. Complicating matters further is his deepening relationship with the beautiful Detective Eleanor Lowrey. Will the danger closing in around him threaten to ensnare her as well?>Learn More
7.0 hrs • 5/7/2013ListenA Poisoned Pen Press MysteryRead by Jim Meskimen
The private detective business starts out badly for former Phoenix deputy David Mapstone, who has teamed up with his old friend and boss, Sheriff Mike Peralta. Their first client is gunned down just after hiring them. The case involved the suspicious death of a young Arizona woman who fell from a condo tower in San Diego. The police call Grace Hunter’s death a suicide, but the client doesn’t buy it. He’s her brother—or is he? After his murder, police find multiple driver’s licenses, and his real identity is a mystery. Complicating the case is that the condo’s owner is an Arizona state senator who was instrumental in Peralta’s recent election defeat.
In San Diego, David finds the woman’s boyfriend, who is trying to care for their baby and can’t believe Grace would kill herself. He, too, hires the pair to solve Grace’s death and reveals some darker facts. Grace was putting herself through college as a high-priced call girl, an escort for rich men who valued her looks and discretion. Before the day is out, the boyfriend is murdered, and David barely escapes with his own life. Whoever is killing their clients may be coming for them.
Neither the lovely beaches of San Diego nor the enchanting desert of Arizona can conceal the brutal danger that exists there. Solving the case will take Mapstone and Peralta into the world of human trafficking, corrupt politics, and the white supremacist movement. They no longer have badges, but they are still detectives—the night detectives.>Learn More
11.5 hrs • 5/7/2013Listen
Seven stories of Majipoor from science fiction grand master Robert Silverberg
Hailed as “one of the most fully realized worlds of modern science fiction” (Booklist), Majipoor is a planet unlike any other, with countless untold stories. Now, available for the first time in one volume, Silverberg presents seven tales that chronicle thousands of years of Majipoor’s history, from the arrival of the settlers of Old Earth to the expansion of vast cities to the extraordinary life of Lord Valentine. Within these stories lie the secrets of Majipoor—a wondrous world of incredible imagination.>Learn More