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  1. 8.9 hrs • 2/21/2017 • Unabridged

    From the author of the “lyrical and compelling” (USA Today) novel A Good American comes a powerful story of two friends and the unintended consequences of friendship, loss, and hope. For Robert Carter, life in his coastal Maine hometown is comfortably predictable. But in 1976, on his first day of eighth grade, he meets Nathan Tilly, who changes everything. Nathan is confident, fearless, impetuous—and fascinated by kites and flying. Robert and Nathan’s budding friendship is forged in the crucible of two family tragedies, and as the boys struggle to come to terms with loss, they take summer jobs at the local rundown amusement park. It’s there that Nathan’s boundless capacity for optimism threatens to overwhelm them both, and where they learn some harsh truths about family, desire, and revenge. Unforgettable and heart-breaking, Setting Free the Kites is a poignant and moving exploration of the pain, joy, and glories of young friendship.

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    Setting Free the Kites

    8.9 hrs • 2/21/17 • Unabridged
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  2. 11.6 hrs • 2/21/2017 • Unabridged

    "Just because the men have gone to war, why do we have to close the choir? And precisely when we need it most!"   As England enters World War II's dark early days, spirited music professor Primrose Trent, recently arrived to the village of Chilbury, emboldens the women of the town to defy the Vicar's stuffy edict to shutter the church's choir in the absence of men and instead "carry on singing." Resurrecting themselves as "The Chilbury Ladies' Choir," the women of this small village soon use their joint song to lift up themselves, and the community, as the war tears through their lives.Told through letters and journals, THE CHILBURY LADIES' CHOIR moves seamlessly from budding romances to village intrigues to heartbreaking matters of life and death. As we come to know the struggles of the charismatic members of this unforgettable outfit-- a timid widow worried over her son at the front; the town beauty drawn to a rakish artist; her younger sister nursing an impossible crush and dabbling in politics she doesn't understand; a young Jewish refugee hiding secrets about her family, and a conniving midwife plotting to outrun her seedy past-- we come to see how the strength each finds in the choir's collective voice reverberates in her individual life. In turns funny, charming and heart-wrenching, this lovingly executed ensemble novel will charm and inspire, illuminating the true spirit of the women on the homefront, in a village of indomitable spirit, at the dawn of a most terrible conflict.

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    The Chilbury Ladies' Choir by Jennifer Ryan

    The Chilbury Ladies' Choir

    11.6 hrs • 2/21/17 • Unabridged
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  3. 12.9 hrs • 2/21/2017 • Unabridged

    Sixteen-year-old Noa has been cast out in disgrace after becoming pregnant by a Nazi soldier and being forced to give up her baby. She lives above a small rail station, which she cleans in order to earn her keep. When Noa discovers a boxcar containing dozens of Jewish infants bound for a concentration camp, she is reminded of the child that was taken from her. And in a moment that will change the course of her life, she snatches one of the babies and flees into the snowy night. Noa finds refuge with a German circus, but she must learn the flying trapeze act so she can blend in undetected, spurning the resentment of the lead aerialist, Astrid. At first rivals, Noa and Astrid soon forge a powerful bond. But as the façade that protects them proves increasingly tenuous, Noa and Astrid must decide whether their friendship is enough to save one another—or if the secrets that burn between them will destroy everything.

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    The Orphan’s Tale by Pam Jenoff

    The Orphan’s Tale

    12.9 hrs • 2/21/17 • Unabridged
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  4. 8.0 hrs • 2/21/2017 • Unabridged

    To Christina Olson, the entire world was her family’s remote farm in the small coastal town of Cushing, Maine. Born in the home her family had lived in for generations, and increasingly incapacitated by illness, Christina seemed destined for a small life. Instead, for more than twenty years, she was host and inspiration for the artist Andrew Wyeth, and became the subject of one of the best-known American paintings of the twentieth century. As she did in her beloved smash bestseller Orphan Train, Christina Baker Kline interweaves fact and fiction in a powerful novel that illuminates a little-known part of America’s history. Bringing into focus the flesh-and-blood woman behind the portrait, she vividly imagines the life of a woman with a complicated relationship to her family and her past, and a special bond with one of our greatest modern artists. Told in evocative and lucid prose, A Piece of the World is a story about the burdens and blessings of family history, and how artist and muse can come together to forge a new and timeless legacy.

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    A Piece of the World

    8.0 hrs • 2/21/17 • Unabridged
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  5. 9.7 hrs • 2/21/2017 • Unabridged

    Based on the author’s discoveries about her great-grandfather, this stunning debut novel takes place over three days when World War II comes to the doorstep of an ordinary German family living in an idyllic, rural village near the Swiss border.When World War II breaks out, Edith and Oskar Eberhardt move their family—their daughter, Marina; son-in-law, Franz; and their granddaughters—out of Berlin and into a small house in the quiet town of Blumental, near Switzerland. A member of Hitler’s cabinet, Oskar is gone most of the time, and Franz begins fighting in the war, so the women of the house are left to their quiet lives in the picturesque village. But life in Blumental isn’t as idyllic as it appears. An egotistical Nazi captain terrorizes the citizens he’s assigned to protect. Neighbors spy on each other. Some mysteriously disappear. Marina has a lover who also has close ties to her family and the government. Thinking none of them share her hatred of the Reich, she joins a Protestant priest smuggling Jewish refugees over the nearby Swiss border. The latest “package” is two Polish girls who’ve lost the rest of their family, and against her better judgment, Marina finds she must hide them in the Eberhardt’s cellar. Everything is set to go smoothly until Oskar comes home with the news that the Führer will be visiting the area for a concert, and he will be making a house call on the Eberhardts. Based on the author’s discoveries about her great-grandfather, this extraordinary debut, full of love, tragedy, and suspense, is a sensitive portrait of a family torn between doing their duty for their country and doing what’s right for their country, and especially for those they love.

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    The Good at Heart

    9.7 hrs • 2/21/17 • Unabridged
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  6. 11.3 hrs • 2/21/2017

    Washington City, 1862: The United States lies in tatters, and there seems no end to the war. Abraham Lincoln, the legitimate President of the United States, is using all his will to keep his beloved land together. But Lincoln’s will and soul are tested when tragedy strikes the White House as Willie Lincoln, the love and shining light in the president’s heart, is taken by typhoid fever._x000D_ _x000D_ But was this really the cause of his death? A message arrives, suggesting otherwise. Lincoln asks John Hay, his trusted aide—and almost a son—to investigate Willie’s death. Some see Hay as a gadfly--adventurous, incisive, lusty, reflective, skeptical, even cynical—but he loves the president and so seeks the truth behind the boy’s death. _x000D_ _x000D_ And so, as we follow Hay in his investigation, we are shown the loftiest and lowest corners of Washington City, from the president’s office and the gentleman’s dining room at Willard’s Hotel to the alley hovels, wartime hospitals, and the dome-less Capitol’s vermin-infested subbasement. We see the unfamiliar sides of a grief-stricken president, his hellcat of a wife, and their two surviving and suffering sons, and Hay matches wits with such luminaries as General McClellan, William Seward, and the indomitable detective Allan Pinkerton._x000D_ _x000D_ What Hay discovers has the potential of not only destroying Lincoln, but a nation._x000D_ _x000D_ The Murder of Willie Lincoln is an exciting historical fiction debut by award-winning political journalist and Washington insider Burt Solomon.

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  7. 17.8 hrs • 2/17/2017 • Unabridged

    The critically acclaimed author, Anchee Min, paints a fresh portrait of the last Chinese empress in this brilliantly fictionalized tale set during the waning days of the empire. Seventeen-year-old Orchid belongs to an aristocratic family that has fallen on hard times. Unexpectedly, she is chosen as one of the emperor's lesser concubines. Within the Forbidden City are thousands of women hoping to bear the emperor a son and become his empress. Orchid, determined and resourceful, schemes her way into the royal bed and seduces the emperor. But as the opium trade erodes the might of the Ch'ing dynasty, Orchid find herself at the center of a crumbling nation. A colorful depiction of one of history's least understood women, The Empress Orchid is another enthralling masterpiece for Anchee Min.

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    Empress Orchid

    17.8 hrs • 2/17/17 • Unabridged
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  8. 11.1 hrs • 2/17/2017 • Unabridged

    This is the first novel Patrick O’Brian ever wrote about the sea, a precursor to the Aubrey-Maturin series that the New York Times has hailed as “the best historical novels ever written.” The Golden Ocean shares the high-seas adventure and rich humor of this triumphant series, invoking the eloquent style and authentic historic atmosphere that O’Brian fans love so much. In 1740, two young Irishmen-lifelong friends Peter and Sean-join Commodore Anson and his crew on their quest for fortune and fame on the golden ocean.

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  9. 7.4 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    The long-awaited first novel from the author of Tenth of December: a moving and original father-son story featuring none other than Abraham Lincoln, as well as an unforgettable cast of supporting characters, living and dead, historical and invented February 1862. The Civil War is less than one year old. The fighting has begun in earnest, and the nation has begun to realize it is in for a long, bloody struggle. Meanwhile, President Lincoln’s beloved eleven-year-old son, Willie, lies upstairs in the White House, gravely ill. In a matter of days, despite predictions of a recovery, Willie dies and is laid to rest in a Georgetown cemetery. “My poor boy, he was too good for this earth,” the president says at the time. “God has called him home.” Newspapers report that a grief-stricken Lincoln returns, alone, to the crypt several times to hold his boy’s body. From that seed of historical truth, George Saunders spins an unforgettable story of familial love and loss that breaks free of its realistic, historical framework into a supernatural realm both hilarious and terrifying. Willie Lincoln finds himself in a strange purgatory where ghosts mingle, gripe, commiserate, quarrel, and enact bizarre acts of penance. Within this transitional state—called, in the Tibetan tradition, the bardo—a monumental struggle erupts over young Willie’s soul. Lincoln in the Bardo is an astonishing feat of imagination and a bold step forward from one of the most important and influential writers of his generation. Formally daring, generous in spirit, deeply concerned with matters of the heart, it is a testament to fiction’s ability to speak honestly and powerfully to the things that really matter to us. Saunders has invented a thrilling new form that deploys a kaleidoscopic, theatrical panorama of voices to ask a timeless, profound question: How do we live and love when we know that everything we love must end? The 166-person full cast features award-winning actors and musicians, as well as a number of Saunders’ family, friends, and members of his publishing team, including, in order of their appearance: Nick Offerman as HANS VOLLMANDavid Sedaris as ROGER BEVINS IIICarrie Brownstein as ISABELLE PERKINSGeorge Saunders as THE REVEREND EVERLY THOMASMiranda July as MRS. ELIZABETH CRAWFORDLena Dunham as ELISE TRAYNORBen Stiller as JACK MANDERSJulianne Moore as JANE ELLISSusan Sarandon as MRS. ABIGAIL BLASSBradley Whitford as LT. CECIL STONEBill Hader as EDDIE BARONMegan Mullally as BETSY BARONRainn Wilson as PERCIVAL “DASH” COLLIERJeff Tweedy as CAPTAIN WILLIAM PRINCEKat Dennings as MISS TAMARA DOOLITTLEJeffrey Tambor as PROFESSOR EDMUND BLOOMERMike O’Brien as LAWRENCE T. DECROIXKeegan-Michael Key as ELSON FARWELLDon Cheadle as THOMAS HAVENSandPatrick Wilson as STANLEY “PERFESSER” LIPPERTwithKirby Heyborne as WILLIE LINCOLN,Mary Karr as MRS. ROSE MILLAND,and Cassandra Campbell as Your Narrator

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  10. 15.6 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    “Reading Georgia Hunter’s We Were the Lucky Ones is like being swung heart first into history…A brave and mesmerizing debut, and a truly tremendous accomplishment.” —Paula McLain An extraordinary, propulsive novel based on the true story of a far-flung family of Polish Jews who survived the Holocaust, escaped the war, and found each other again, against all odds It is the spring of 1939, and the seven members of the Kurc family are doing their best to live normal lives, even as the shadow of war grows ever closer. The talk around the family seder table is of new babies and budding romance, not of the increasing depravations facing Jews in their hometown of Radom, Poland. But soon the horrors overtaking Europe will become inescapable and the Kurc family will be flung to the far corners of the earth, each charting his or her own path toward safety. As some members are forced into exile, others try to escape certain death by working endless hours on empty stomachs in the factories of the ghetto or hiding as gentiles in plain sight. Facing an unknown future where they may or may not ever be reunited, the Kurcs find inner strength and hope in the face of horror. Propelled by their will to survive—across six years and five continents, from the jazz clubs of Paris to the beaches of Rio de Janeiro to Montelupich Prison and the farthest reaches of the Siberian gulag—the Kurcs find ways to persevere even in the face of impossible hardship. When author Georgia Hunter was just entering adulthood, she discovered that her beloved grandfather Addy was part of a family that escaped the horrors of World War II. This novel is a fictional account of their remarkable experience that is not only a tribute to her family’s story but to the triumph of the human spirit in the face of the twentieth century’s darkest moment. We Were the Lucky Ones is a testament to the notion that with courage, ingenuity, and luck, nearly anything is possible.From the Hardcover edition.

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    We Were the Lucky Ones

    15.6 hrs • 2/14/17 • Unabridged
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  11. 13.7 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    Irish-American Maggie O’Dea is bright, beautiful and resourceful—and she hates the English! It’s the summer of 1938 and Maggie is studying in Heidelberg when she meets the dashing Kurt Engel, a German soldier. Maggie agrees to follow Kurt to Berlin provided he helps her find a job. And what a job! Maggie lands a position as assistant to Clive Barnes, an obese and often intoxicated Englishman known over the airwaves as ‘Lord Lyon.’ Barnes broadcasts Nazi propaganda to his homeland each evening. After Kurt is deployed, Maggie spends more time at work, growing closer to her colleague Dieter Schmidt. Erich Greinke is an American who’s been fighting alongside the Germans in Spain’s civil war. He’s recruited by WWI hero ‘Wild’ Bill Donovan to report on developments in the German capital. Erich quickly identifies Maggie as an opportunity to penetrate Propaganda Minister Joseph Goebbels’ inner circle. As Europe plunges into the abyss of world war, Maggie begins to question the guidance she receives from the Ministry and begins to realize she has fallen victim to the very propaganda she has helped create. Caught between her conscience and the Gestapo’s tightening noose, Maggie walks a deadly tight-rope as she navigates between love and loyalty, survival and discovery.

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    Berlin Calling

    13.7 hrs • 2/14/17 • Unabridged
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  12. 12.6 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    It is 1939 in Vienna, and as the specter of war darkens Europe, Rose Zimmer’s parents are desperate. Unable to get out of Austria, they manage to secure passage for their young daughter on a kindertransport, and send her to live with strangers in England. Six years later, the war finally over, a grief-stricken Rose attempts to build a life for herself. Alone in London, devastated, she cannot help but try to search out one piece of her childhood: the Chaim Soutine painting her mother had cherished. Many years later, the painting finds its way to America. In modern-day Los Angeles, Lizzie Goldstein has returned home for her father’s funeral. Newly single and unsure of her path, she also carries a burden of guilt that cannot be displaced. Years ago, as a teenager, Lizzie threw a party at her father’s house with unexpected but far-reaching consequences. The Soutine painting that she loved and had provided lasting comfort to her after her own mother had died was stolen, and has never been recovered. This painting will bring Lizzie and Rose together and ignite an unexpected friendship, eventually revealing long-held secrets that hold painful truths. Spanning decades and unfolding in crystalline, atmospheric prose, The Fortunate Ones is a haunting story of longing, devastation, and forgiveness, and a deep examination of the bonds and desires that map our private histories.

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    The Fortunate Ones by Ellen Umansky

    The Fortunate Ones

    12.6 hrs • 2/14/17 • Unabridged
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  13. 11.1 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    On the eve of the bloody Battle of the Somme, a group of English officers having a last drink before returning to the Front make a promise to each other: if they survive the battle ahead—and make it through the war—they will meet in Paris a year after the fighting ends. They will celebrate their good fortune by racing motorcars they beg, borrow, or own from Paris to Nice. In November 1919, the officers all meet as planned, and though their motorcars are not designed for racing, they set out for Nice. But a serious mishap mars the reunion. In the mountains just north of their destination, two vehicles are nearly run off the road, and one man is badly injured. No one knows—or will admit to knowing—which driver was at the wheel of the rogue motorcar. Back in England one year later, during a heavy rainstorm, a driver loses control on a twisting road and is killed in the crash. Was it an accident due to the hazardous conditions? Or premeditated murder? Is the crash connected in some way to the unfortunate events in the mountains above Nice the year before? The dead driver wasn’t in France—although the motorcar he drove was. If it was foul play, was it a case of mistaken identity? Or was the dead man the intended victim after all? Investigating this perplexing case, Scotland Yard Inspector Ian Rutledge discovers that the truth is elusive—and that the villages on the South Downs, where the accident happened, are adept at keeping secrets, frustrating his search. Determined to remain in the shadows this faceless killer is willing to strike again to stop Rutledge from finding him. This time, the victim he chooses is a child, and it will take all of Rutledge’s skill to stop him before an innocent young life is sacrificed.

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    Racing the Devil by Charles Todd
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  14. 12.8 hrs • 2/14/2017 • Unabridged

    From the author of the acclaimed Crooked Heart comes another “smart, funny, ingenious, revealing tale of London life during the Second World War” (The Independent)—longlisted for the Orange Prize upon its original publication in England. It is 1940. France has fallen, and only a narrow strip of sea lies between Great Britain and invasion. The war could go either way and everyone must do their bit. Young copy writer Catrin Cole is drafted into the Ministry of Information to help “write women” into propaganda films—something that the men aren’t very good at. She is quickly seconded to the Ministry’s latest endeavor: a heart-warming tale of bravery and rescue at Dunkirk. It’s all completely fabricated, of course, but what does that matter when the nation’s morale is at stake? Since call-up has stripped the industry of its brightest and best, it is the callow, the jaded and the utterly unsuitable who must make up the numbers: Ambrose Hilliard, third most popular British film-star of 1924; Edith Beadmore, Madame Tussauds wardrobe assistant turned costumier; and Arthur Frith, whose peacetime job as a catering manager has not really prepared him for his sudden, unexpected elevation to Special Military Advisor. Now in a serious world, in a nation under siege, they must all swallow their mutual distaste, ill-will, and mistrust to unite for the common good, for King and Country, and—in one case—for better or worse …

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    Their Finest by Lissa Evans

    Their Finest

    12.8 hrs • 2/14/17 • Unabridged
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  15. 6.8 hrs • 2/7/2017 • Unabridged

    Meet Ottie Lee Henshaw, a startling, challenging beauty in small-town Indiana. Quick of mind, she navigates a stifling marriage, a lecherous boss, and on one day in the summer of 1920, an odyssey across the countryside to witness a dark and fearful celebration. Meet Calla Destry, a young black woman desperate to escape the violence of her town, and to find the lover who has promised her a new life. Every road leads to the bedlam of Marvel, and on it lives will collide and be changed forever. Reminiscent of the works of Louise Erdrich, Edward P. Jones and Marilynn Robinson, The Evening Road is the story of two remarkable women on the move through an America riven by fear and hatred, and eager to flee the secrets they have left behind.

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    The Evening Road

    6.8 hrs • 2/7/17 • Unabridged
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  16. 12.0 hrs • 2/7/2017 • Unabridged

    With echoes of The Night Circus, a spellbinding story about two gifted orphans –  in love with each other since they can remember – whose childhood talents allow them to rewrite their future. The Lonely Hearts Hotel is a love story with the power of legend. An unparalleled tale of charismatic pianos, invisible dance partners, radicalized chorus girls, drug-addicted musicians, brooding clowns, and an underworld whose economy hinges on the price of a kiss. In a landscape like this, it takes great creative gifts to thwart one’s origins. It might also take true love.Two babies are abandoned in a Montreal orphanage in the winter of 1914. Before long, their talents emerge: Pierrot is a piano prodigy; Rose lights up even the dreariest room with her dancing and comedy. As they travel around the city performing clown routines, the children fall in love with each other and dream up a plan for the most extraordinary and seductive circus show the world has ever seen. Separated as teenagers, sent off to work as servants during the Great Depression, both descend into the city’s underworld, dabbling in sex, drugs and theft in order to survive. But when Rose and Pierrot finally reunite beneath the snowflakes – after years of searching and desperate poverty – the possibilities of their childhood dreams are renewed, and they’ll go to extreme lengths to make them come true. Soon, Rose, Pierrot and their troupe of clowns and chorus girls have hit New York, commanding the stage as well as the alleys, and neither the theater nor the underworld will ever look the same.With her musical language and extravagantly realized world, Heather O’Neill enchants us with a novel so magical there is no escaping its spell.From the Hardcover edition.

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    The Lonely Hearts Hotel

    12.0 hrs • 2/7/17 • Unabridged
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