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Coming Of Age

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  1. 10.6 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    The acclaimed, bestselling author—winner of the PEN/Faulkner Award and the Orange Prize—tells the enthralling story of how an unexpected romantic encounter irrevocably changes two families’ lives. One Sunday afternoon in Southern California, Bert Cousins shows up at Franny Keating’s christening party uninvited. Before evening falls, he has kissed Franny’s mother, Beverly—thus setting in motion the dissolution of their marriages and the joining of two families. Spanning five decades, Commonwealth explores how this chance encounter reverberates through the lives of the four parents and six children involved. Spending summers together in Virginia, the Keating and Cousins children forge a lasting bond that is based on a shared disillusionment with their parents and the strange and genuine affection that grows up between them. When, in her twenties, Franny begins an affair with the legendary author Leon Posen and tells him about her family, the story of her siblings is no longer hers to control. Their childhood becomes the basis for his wildly successful book, ultimately forcing them to come to terms with their losses, their guilt, and the deeply loyal connection they feel for one another. Told with equal measures of humor and heartbreak, Commonwealth is a meditation on inspiration, interpretation, and the ownership of stories. It is a brilliant and tender tale of the far-reaching ties of love and responsibility that bind us together.

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    Commonwealth

    10.6 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 9/6/2016 • Unabridged

    Centuries of war with aliens threaten the future of human civilization on earth in this gripping, epic science fiction debut...We never saw them coming. Entire cities disappeared in the blink of an eye, leaving nothing but dust and rubble. When an alien race came to make Earth theirs, they brought with them a weapon we had no way to fight, a universe-altering force known as thelemity. It seemed nothing could stop it—until we discovered we could wield the power too.Five hundred years later, the Earth is locked in a grinding war of attrition. The talented few capable of bending thelemity to their will are trained in elite military academies, destined for the front lines. Those who refused to support the war have been exiled to the wilds of a ruined Earth.But the enemy's tactics are changing, and Earth's defenders are about to discover this centuries-old war has only just begun. As a terrible new onslaught looms, heroes will rise from unlikely quarters, and fight back.

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  3. 11.7 hrs • 9/6/2016 • Unabridged

    Jamie Cole has just been released from juvenile detention. Determined to go straight, he tried to cut ties with crime boss Brett Reye—but Brett has no intention of letting him go. Jamie’s life is already more complicated than it needs to be, yet when he meets a beautiful stranger at a bar, Jamie knows he’s in over his head. Ellie Pearce has just gotten out of a terrible relationship and isn’t looking for anything serious…until she meets Jamie. Their attraction is overwhelming and intense-she can’t seem to shake her growing feelings for him, even though she’s trying to keep it casual. But when fate goes horribly wrong and Jamie’s family is faced with ruin, he’s forced to strike a deal with Brett. Despite his struggles, he wants nothing more than a future with Ellie. That’s until Ellie finds out that he’s been hiding more from her than she could ever imagine…

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    Fighting to Be Free

    11.7 hrs • 9/6/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 8.2 hrs • 8/23/2016 • Unabridged

    Suspecting that something is amiss with their father s burial, teenager Kenneth Tyler and his sister Corrie venture to his gravesite and make a horrific discovery: their father, a whiskey bootlegger, was not actually buried in the casket they bought for him. Worse, they learn that the undertaker, Fenton Breece, has been grotesquely manipulating the dead. Armed with incriminating photographs, Tyler becomes obsessed with bringing the perverse undertaker to justice. But first he must outrun Granville Sutter, a local strongman and convicted murderer hired by Fenton to destroy the evidence. What follows is an adventure through the Harrikin, an eerie backwoods filled with tangled roads, rusted machinery, and eccentric squattersold men, witches, and families among themwho both shield and imperil Tyler as he runs for safety. With his poetic, haunting prose, William Gay rewrites the rules of the gothic fairytale while exploring the classic Southern themes of good and evil.”

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    Twilight

    8.2 hrs • 8/23/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 7.6 hrs • 8/2/2016 • Unabridged

    Based on a remarkable true story, an unforgettable Somali girl risks her life on the migrant journey to Europe to run in the Olympic Games At eight years of age, Samia lives to run. She shares her dream with her best friend and neighbor, Ali, who appoints himself her “professional coach.” Eight-year-old Ali trains her, times her, and pushes her to achieve her goals. For both children, Samia’s running is the bright spot in their tumultuous life in Somalia. She is talented, brave, and determined to represent her country in the Olympic Games, just like her hero, the great Somali runner Mo Farah. For the next several years, Samia and Ali train at night in a deserted stadium, as war rages and political tensions continue to escalate. Despite the lack of resources, despite the war, and despite all of the restrictions imposed on Somali women, Samia becomes a world-class runner. As a teenager, she is selected to represent her country at the 2008 Beijing Olympics. She finishes last in her heat at the Games, but the sight of the small, skinny woman in modest clothes running in the dust of athletes like Veronica Campbell-Brown brings the Olympic stadium to its feet. Samia sets her sights on the 2012 Olympics, in London, the home of Mo Farah. Conditions in Somalia have deteriorated, and Samia must get to London on her own. To do so, she is forced to make the arduous migrant journey across Africa and the Mediterranean.

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    Don’t Tell Me You’re Afraid

    Translated by Anne Milano Appel
    Read by Adjoa Andoh
    7.6 hrs • 8/2/16 • Unabridged
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  6. 5.8 hrs • 7/26/2016 • Unabridged

    A powerful, poignant novel of love, redemption, and family secrets from the incomparable #1 New York Times bestselling author Fern Michaels… On his thirty-fifth birthday, Jake St. Cloud inherits a fortune—and learns the whereabouts of his mysterious half-brother. On her deathbed, Selma St. Cloud revealed that Jake had a sibling, a product of his father’s affair. At last, Jake is in a position to track down Alex Rosario and make amends for their father’s past neglect. When their initial meeting goes badly, a distraught Jake crashes his car and is sentenced to community work—with Alex as his parole officer. Jake must spend a year helping Angelica Dancer and her daughter, Fancy, at the Dancer Foundation for neglected children. Fancy, scarred by the accident that ended her ballet career, is even less happy with the arrangement than Jake. Yet as they’re all thrown together, unexpected connections help Jake realize that his mother’s greatest gift to him lies not in his inheritance, but in the future, and the family, he’s slowly piecing together.

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    Fancy Dancer

    5.8 hrs • 7/26/16 • Unabridged
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  7. 14.4 hrs • 7/26/2016 • Unabridged

    A heartbreaking and moving story about a daughter’s quest to discover the truth about her father’s hidden past Ada Sibelius is raised by David, a single father and head of a computer science lab in Boston. Homeschooled, she accompanies her loving father—brilliant, eccentric, socially inept—to work every day. By twelve, she is a painfully shy prodigy. At the same time that the lab begins to gain acclaim, David’s mind begins to falter and his mysterious past comes into question. When her father moves into a nursing home, Ada is taken in by one of David’s colleagues. She embarks on a mission to uncover her father’s secrets: a process that carries her from childhood to adulthood. Eventually, Ada pioneers a type of software that enables her to make contact with her past and to reconcile the man she thought she knew with the truth. Praised for her ability to create quirky and unforgettable characters, Liz Moore has written a piercing story of a daughter’s quest to restore the legacy of the father she desperately loves.

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    The Unseen World by Liz Moore

    The Unseen World

    14.4 hrs • 7/26/16 • Unabridged
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  8. 7.9 hrs • 7/26/2016 • Unabridged

    Set during the race riots of the 1970s, My Name is Leon tells the story of Leon, a half-black nine year-old boy who struggles to make sense of his changing world. After his mother suffers a mental breakdown, Leon and his baby brother, Jake, are sent into foster care. Jake—who is white—is soon adopted, and Leon is left wondering why his home life has fallen apart. Meanwhile, at a local garden where Leon likes to ride his bike, racial tensions spark between a West Indian political activist and an aging member of Ireland’s IRA. When life at his new home becomes too much for Leon to bear, he sets out to find Jake and his mother but comes face-to-face with the ugly realities of inequality and injustice instead. Amid the chaos, Leon and those around him learn that love and tolerance can often be found in the most unlikely places.

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    My Name Is Leon

    7.9 hrs • 7/26/16 • Unabridged
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  9. 7.2 hrs • 7/19/2016 • Unabridged

    A poignant, hilarious novel about a woman who still has her virginity at the age of twenty-six and the summer she’s determined to lose it—and find herself. Julia Greenfield has a problem: she’s twenty-six years old and she’s still a virgin. Sex ought to be easy. People have it all the time! But, without meaning to, she made it through college and into adulthood with her virginity intact. Something’s got to change. To re-route herself from her stalled life, Julia travels to spend the summer with her mysterious aunt Vivienne in North Carolina. It’s not long, however, before she unearths a confounding secret—her fifty-eight-year old aunt is a virgin too. In the unrelenting heat of the southern summer, Julia becomes fixated on puzzling out what could have lead to Viv’s appalling condition, all while trying to avoid the same fate. Filled with offbeat characters and subtle, wry humor, Losing It is about the primal fear that you just might never meet anyone. It’s about desiring something with the kind of obsessive fervor that almost guarantees you won’t get it. It’s about the blurry lines between sex and love and trying to figure out which one you’re going for. And it’s about the decisions—and nondecisions—we make that can end up shaping a life.

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    Losing It

    7.2 hrs • 7/19/16 • Unabridged
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  10. 8.3 hrs • 7/19/2016 • Unabridged

    A beautiful debut set around the creation of the world-famous Monterey Bay Aquarium—and the last days of John Steinbeck’s Cannery Row In 1940, fifteen-year-old Margot Fiske arrives on the shores of Monterey Bay with her eccentric entrepreneur father. Margot has been her father’s apprentice all over the world, until an accident in Monterey’s tide pools drives them apart and plunges her head-first into the mayhem of John Steinbeck’s Cannery Row. Steinbeck is hiding out from his burgeoning fame at the raucous lab of Ed Ricketts, the biologist known as Doc in Cannery Row. Ricketts, a charismatic bohemian, quickly becomes the object of Margot’s fascination. Despite Steinbeck’s protests and her father’s misgivings, she wrangles a job as Ricketts’s sketch artist and begins drawing the strange and wonderful sea creatures he pulls from the waters of the bay. Unbeknownst to Margot, her father is also working with Ricketts. He is soliciting the biologist’s advice on his most ambitious and controversial project to date: the transformation of the Row’s largest cannery into an aquarium. When Margot begins an affair with Ricketts, she sets in motion a chain of events that will affect not just the two of them, but the future of Monterey as well. Alternating between past and present, Monterey Bay explores histories both imagined and actual to create an unforgettable portrait of an exceptional woman, a world-famous aquarium, and the beloved town they both call home.

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    Monterey Bay

    8.3 hrs • 7/19/16 • Unabridged
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  11. 11.0 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    Part coming-of-age story, part mystery, The Trouble with Goats and Sheep is a quirky and utterly charming debut about a community in need of absolution and two girls learning what it means to belong. England, 1976. Mrs. Creasy is missing and the Avenue is alive with whispers. The neighbors blame her sudden disappearance on the heat wave, but ten-year-olds Grace and Tilly aren’t convinced. As the summer shimmers endlessly on, the girls decide to take matters into their own hands. Inspired by the local vicar, they go looking for God—they believe that if they find Him they might also find Mrs. Creasy and bring her home. Spunky, spirited Grace and quiet, thoughtful Tilly go door to door in search of clues. The cul-de-sac starts to give up its secrets, and the amateur detectives uncover much more than ever imagined. As they try to make sense of what they’ve seen and heard, a complicated history of deception begins to emerge. Everyone on the Avenue has something to hide, a reason for not fitting in. In the suffocating heat of the summer, the ability to guard these differences becomes impossible. Along with the parched lawns and the melting pavement, the lives of all the neighbors begin to unravel. What the girls don’t realize is that the lies told to conceal what happened one fateful day about a decade ago are the same ones Mrs. Creasy was beginning to peel back just before she disappeared.

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    The Trouble with Goats and Sheep

    11.0 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  12. 8.0 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    In the tradition of Tom Perrotta’s Little Children, a “mesmerizing, unsparing” (Karen Russell, author of Swamplandia!) debut novel about a wealthy man who has reached a crossroads after a lifetime of repression and denial, sending him—and his family—into a slow spiral towards a total breakdown. When Michael sees his wife Nancy chatting with a stranger at a party, his intuition tells him that he’s watching her with the man she should have married. He quickly begins a campaign to replace himself within his own family with this other man—who, to him, is worthier, better, and kinder—all so his faithful wife Nancy, his beautiful teenage daughter Ryan, and his young son Max can live the lives they deserve. While Michael pursues this man’s friendship, Ryan goes through a period of sexual awakening and rebellion and distances herself from her family, and the quiet, weak Nancy becomes increasingly befuddled and frustrated by the behaviors of her husband and daughter. As tension and uncertainty build in their home, the James family slowly unravels. With the quiet intensity of the film American Beauty and the emotional sensitivity of Lorrie Moore, Taylor Larsen creates a powerful and moving story about the fracturing of a family and its descent into chaos.

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    Stranger, Father, Beloved

    8.0 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  13. 9.2 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    A delightful story of growing up, getting old, and every step in between, from the acclaimed author of Man at the Helm and Love, Nina. After succeeding in her quest to help her unconventional mother find a new “man at the helm,” fifteen-year-old Lizzie Vogel simply wants to be a normal teenager. Just when it looks as if things have settled down, her mother goes and has another baby. On top of that, Lizzie’s best friend has deserted her for the punk craze, which Lizzie finds too exhausting to commit to herself. But Lizzie soon gets more commitment than she bargained for when she takes a job as a junior nurse at Paradise Lodge, a ramshackle refuge for the elderly that has seen better days. It’s no place for a teenager, much less one with as little experience emptying a bedpan as Lizzie. What begins as away to avoid school and earn some spending money (for the finer things in life, like real coffee and beer shampoo) quickly turns into the education of a lifetime. Lizzie encounters a colorful cast of eccentric characters—including a nurse determined to turn one of the patients into a husband (and a retirement plan); an efficient but clueless nun trying to modernize the place; and Lizzie’s unlikely first love—who become her surrogate family. When Paradise Lodge faces a crisis in the form of a rival nursing home with enough amenities to make even the comatose jealous, Lizzie must find a way to save her job before she loses the only place she’s ever felt she belongs. A hilarious and heartfelt coming-of-age tale, Paradise Lodge proves that it’s never too early—or too late—to grow up.

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    Paradise Lodge

    9.2 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  14. 7.5 hrs • 7/5/2016 • Unabridged

    A lush, evocative, debut novel set in Provence about the people who grow up and live and remain in two tiny neighboring villages—from the Nazi occupation to the present day—in particular, one man and one woman who have yet to find love. In the south of France farm life unfolds with the rhythm of the seasons. But the lives of these villagers in Amour Provence reflect the reality that the midi is a place of extremes, the summers of unbearable heat and the winters that are often rude and harsh. Like the climate, the characters find themselves swept away by storms of unannounced and devastating intensity. A vintner’s adolescent son has a passionate romance with his schoolmate’s mother and they suffer different and enduring consequences. A young Arab woman forced into an arranged marriage, learns that life in the land of Liberté and Egalité can be just as confining as in her own country. A French woman who has lived abroad for many years returns home and discovers that certain members of her family are not pleased to have her back. An unexpected encounter with his past brings new sparks of life to a man who believed he had lost everything, including the only woman he ever loved. In these two small adjacent villages in the south of France, characters lead lives that overlap and intertwine. Many are close neighbors who have known each other from childhood, linked by ancestors who clung for centuries to their patrimony, the land, which had always been poor, but is now a source of wealth drawn from wine, olives, and tourists. They know a great deal about each other’s hidden passions and weaknesses. Age-old resentments and closely guarded secrets retain their hold but are never to be discussed. Amour Provence is a portrait of lives deeply lived, shadowed by the past, against the backdrop of a region and a nation gripped by change.

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    Amour Provence

    7.5 hrs • 7/5/16 • Unabridged
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  15. 9.1 hrs • 7/5/2016 • Unabridged

    Two half sisters, one black and one white, embark on a risky road trip through the Jim Crow South of the 1950s in this spellbinding story of identity and race. Self-educated and brown skinned, Cassie works full time in her grandmother’s laundry in rural Mississippi. Illiterate and white, Judith falls for “colored music” and dreams of life as a big-city radio star. These teenage girls are half sisters. And when they catch wind of their wayward father’s inheritance coming down in Virginia, they hitch their hopes on a road trip together to claim what’s rightly theirs. In an old junk car, with a frying pan, a ham, and a few dollars hidden in a shoe, they set off through the Deep South of the 1950s, a bewitchingly beautiful landscape as well as one bedeviled by racial strife and violence. Suzanne Feldman’s Absalom’s Daughters combines the buddy movie, the coming-of-age tale, and a dash of magical realism to enthrall and move us with an unforgettable, illuminating novel.

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    Absalom’s Daughters by Suzanne Feldman

    Absalom’s Daughters

    9.1 hrs • 7/5/16 • Unabridged
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  16. 5.5 hrs • 7/5/2016 • Unabridged

    The highly acclaimed author of A Cure for Suicide now gives us a singular, blistering novel about a teenage girl who has lost everything—and will burn anything. Lucia's father is dead; her mother is in a mental institute; she's living in a garage-turned-bedroom with her aunt. And now she's been kicked out of school—again. Making her way through the world with only a book, a zippo lighter, a pocket full of stolen licorice, a biting wit, and striking intelligence she tries to hide, she spends her days riding the bus to visit her mother and following the only rule that makes any sense to her: Don't do things you aren't proud of. But when she discovers that her new school has a secret Arson Club, she's willing to do anything to be a part of it, and her life is suddenly lit up. And as her fascination with the Arson Club grows, her story becomes one of misguided friendship and, ultimately, destruction.

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    How to Set a Fire and Why

    5.5 hrs • 7/5/16 • Unabridged
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