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Literary

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  1. 15.5 hrs • 9/28/2016 • Unabridged

    M. Dion Thompson has contributed to the Los Angeles Times, The Miami Herald, and The Baltimore Sun. He has received many awards for his writing, and here delivers a captivating coming-of-age tale set in mid 20th-century America. Skip lost his parents in a car accident when he was just a boy, and since then Grandma Sarah’s been watching over him. Now he has a chance to leave the cotton fields of Texas behind and travel to Hollywood in hopes of beginning an acting career. But when he arrives, the drama school that he expects to find does not exist and he is forced to find work washing dishes. The city is fast and bright-a different world than Skip has ever known. He meets many new faces, but determining who to trust is the trick. Thompson captures the colorful language and expressions of early 1900s Hollywood. Acclaimed narrator Kevin R. Free perfectly voices the tones of disappointment and joy as Skip fights to make a name for himself.

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    Walk Like A Natural Man

    15.5 hrs • 9/28/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 22.7 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    Winner of England's Booker Prize and a literary sensation Possession is an exhilarating novel of wit and romance, at once an intellectual mystery and a triumphant love story. As a pair of young scholars research the lives of two Victorian poets, they uncover their letters, journals, and poems, and track their movements from London to Yorkshire -- from spiritualist sénces to the fairy-haunted far west of Brittany. What emerges is an extraordinary counterpoint of passion and ideas.Performed by Virginia Leishman

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    Possession

    22.7 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 7.8 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    What if some of the artists we feel as if we know―Meryl Streep, Neil Young, Bill Murray―turned up in the course of our daily lives? This is what happens to Rose McEwan, an ordinary woman who keeps having strange encounters with famous people. In this engrossing, original novel-in-stories, we follow her life from age seventeen, when she takes a summer writing course led by a young John Updike, through her first heartbreak (witnessed by Joni Mitchell) on the island of Crete, through her marriage, divorce, and a canoe trip with Taylor Swift, Leonard Cohen, and Karl Ove Knausgaard. (Yes, read on.) With wit and insight, Marni Jackson takes a world obsessed with celebrity and turns it on its head. In Don’t I Know You?, she shows us how fame is just another form of fiction, and how, in the end, the daily dramas of an ordinary woman’s life can be as captivating and poignant as any luminary tell-all.

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    Don’t I Know You? by Marni Jackson

    Don’t I Know You?

    7.8 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 3.6 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    A writer’s notebook becomes the key that unlocks memories of a love formed and lost in 1960s Paris. In the aftermath of Algeria’s war of independence, Paris was a city rife with suspicion and barely suppressed violence. Amid this tension, Jean, a young writer adrift, met and fell for Dannie, an enigmatic woman fleeing a troubled past. Half a century later, with his old black notebook as a guide, Jean retraces this fateful period in his life, recounting how, through Dannie, he became mixed up with a group of unsavory characters connected by a shadowy crime. Soon Jean too was a person of interest to the detective pursuing their case—a detective who would prove instrumental in revealing Dannie’s darkest secret. The Black Notebook bears all the hallmarks of this Nobel Prize–winning literary master’s unsettling and intensely atmospheric style, rendered in English by acclaimed translator Mark Polizzotti. Once again, Modiano invites us into his unique world, a Paris infused with melancholy, uncertain danger, and the fading echoes of lost love.

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    The Black Notebook by Patrick Modiano

    The Black Notebook

    Translated by Mark Polizzotti
    3.6 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 9.4 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    A taut emotional thriller about love, obsession, and the secrets that pull a family apart Donald believes he knows all there is to know about seeing. An optician in suburban Boston, he rests assured that he and his wife, Viv, who works at the local stables, will live out quiet lives with their two children. Then Mercury—a gorgeous young racehorse—enters their lives and everything changes. Viv’s friend Hilary has inherited Mercury from her brother after his mysterious death—he was riding Mercury late one afternoon and the horse returned to the stables alone. When Hilary first brings Mercury to board at the stables everyone there is struck by his beauty and prowess, particularly Viv. As she rides him, Viv dreams of competing with Mercury, rebuilding the ambitions of grandeur that she held for herself before moving to the suburbs. But her daydreams soon morph into consuming desire, and her infatuation with the Thoroughbred quickly escalates to obsession. By the time Donald understands the change that has come over Viv, it is too late to stop the impending fate that both their actions have wrought for them and their loved ones. A beautifully crafted, riveting novel about the ways in which relationships can be disrupted and, ultimately, destroyed by obsession, secrets, and ever-escalating lies.

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    Mercury by Margot Livesey

    Mercury

    9.4 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  6. 6.2 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    A study in emotional dislocation and renewal--Professor Godfrey St. Peter, a man in his 50's, has achieved what would seem to be remarkable success. When called on to move to a more comfortable home, something in him rebels.

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    The Professor's House

    6.2 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  7. 8.6 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    "Superbly written, with that sensitivity to sunset and afterglow that has always been Miss Cather's."—The New York TimesWilla Cather wrote Shadows on the Rock immediately after her historical masterpiece, Death Comes for the Archbishop. Like its predecessor, this novel of seventeenth-century Quebec is a luminous evocation of North American origins, and of the men and women who struggled to adapt to that new world even as they clung to the artifacts and manners of one they left behind.In 1697, Quebec is an island of French civilization perched on a bare gray rock amid a wilderness of trackless forests. For many of its settlers, Quebec is a place of exile, so remote that an entire winter passes without a word from home. But to twelve-year-old Cécile Auclair, the rock is home, where even the formidable Governor Frontenac entertains children in his palace and beavers lie beside the lambs in a Christmas créche. As Cather follows this devout and resourceful child over the course of a year, she re-creates the continent as it must have appeared to its first European inhabitants. And she gives us a spellbinding work of historical fiction in which great events occur first as rumors and then as legends—and in which even the most intimate domestic scenes are suffused with a sense of wonder.

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    Shadows on the Rock

    8.6 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  8. 14.6 hrs • 9/20/2016 • Unabridged

    The golden age of live television comes to vivid life with the memorable and entertaining tale of Jonny Dirby, who unintentionally captivates the imagination of America with his creation of the hit show Justice Girl. This fun, engrossing work of historical fiction transports listeners back to a time when television shows were chaotic tightrope acts balancing the agendas of actors, studio executives, advertisers, and politicians—and all of it broadcast live to fifty million viewers without the security of a safety net. Set in 1955 in New York City, Julian David Stone’s impressive novel follows Jonny from the writers’ room of a steady network gig to a crisis of conscience when he decides to abandon his regular paycheck to claim the moral high ground against the spreading plague of McCarthyism. In a final act of defiance, Jonny alters the script of a Superman-inspired lampoon moments before it is broadcast live. What nobody can anticipate is that Jonny’s accidental creation, Justice Girl, and her infectious catchphrase of “Justice is served!” are about to sweep the nation and win the hearts and minds of America. Add to the mix a highly driven actress trying to get Jonny blacklisted, along with a desperate network president willing to do anything he can to get compete control of the show, and the history of television will never be the same. The Strange Birth, Short Life, and Sudden Death of Justice Girl moves beyond the gags and gaffes of television’s golden age to plumb the depths of the media’s broader influence. Anyone interested in this time when television was a new phenomenon, with different factions fighting to use it to promote their varied agendas, will enjoy this riveting novel. Stone is an award-winning writer and director whose twenty years in the entertainment business informs his work with an insider’s perspective.

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    The Strange Birth, Short Life, and Sudden Death of Justice Girl by Julian David Stone

    The Strange Birth, Short Life, and Sudden Death of Justice Girl

    Directed by Claire Bloom
    14.6 hrs • 9/20/16 • Unabridged
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  9. 13.0 hrs • 9/20/2016 • Unabridged

    A small Irish village is mystified by what appears to be a miracle but may actually be murder in the next masterpiece from New York Times bestselling author Emma Donoghue. In Emma Donoghue’s latest, an English nurse brought to a small Irish village to observe what appears to be a miracle—a girl said to have survived without food for months—soon finds herself fighting to save the child’s life.Tourists flock to the cabin of eleven-year-old Anna O’Donnell, who believes herself to be living off manna from heaven, and a journalist is sent to cover the sensation. Lib Wright, a veteran of Florence Nightingale’s Crimean campaign, is hired to keep watch over the girl. Written with all the propulsive tension that made Room a huge bestseller, The Wonder works beautifully on many levels—a tale of two strangers who transform each other’s lives, a powerful psychological thriller, and a story of love pitted against evil.

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    The Wonder

    13.0 hrs • 9/20/16 • Unabridged
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  10. 8.7 hrs • 9/20/2016 • Unabridged

    Soulful, gritty, and hilarious, Cannibals in Love is the debut novel from a bold new voice in fiction, and a manifesto for the generation that came of age at the dawn of the twenty-first century. Mike is about to graduate from college and inherit a world much different from the one he was promised. The World Trade Center towers have just fallen, the Beltway Sniper terrorizes the nation’s capital, and a polarizing president pushes forward a dubious war. Told in eighteen vignettes, Mike’s misadventures begin in Washington, DC, and span Brooklyn, Portland, and Austin as he takes up arms with the overeducated, underemployed millennials who surround him. Nursing writerly ambitions, he works a series of humiliating jobs—counting lampposts, writing spam emails, babysitting a teenage boy—while composing a thousand-page novel about cows as an allegory for the invasion of Iraq. And at the center of the book resides a tumultuous, passionate love story that could arise only between two people with nothing to lose. Like a carefully assembled mixtape, Cannibals in Love weaves tender moments and summer idylls with violent late nights and the frustrations of a generation. From delirious offtrack betting to a fateful walk across Kansas, Mike Roberts takes us into the guts of masculinity and identity in the age of the Internet, and joins an emerging group of young writers who are redefining the contemporary novel.

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    Cannibals in Love by Mike Roberts

    Cannibals in Love

    8.7 hrs • 9/20/16 • Unabridged
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  11. 5.0 hrs • 9/20/2016 • Unabridged

    From the brilliant mind of the author of The Sound of Things Falling, a powerful novel about a legendary political cartoonist.Javier Mallarino is a living legend. He is his country's most influential political cartoonist, the consciousness of a nation. A man capable of repealing laws, overturning judges' decisions, destroying politicians' careers with his art. His weapons are pen and ink. Those in power fear him and pay him homage.At sixty-five, after four decades of a brilliant career, he's at the height of his powers. But this all changes when he's paid an unexpected visit from a young woman who upends his sense of personal history and forces him to re-evaluate his life and work, questioning his position in the world.In Reputations, Juan Gabriel Vásquez examines the weight of the past, how a public persona intersects with private histories, and the burdens and surprises of memory. In this intimate novel, Vásquez plumbs universal experiences to create a masterful story, one that reverberates long after you turn the final page.From the Hardcover edition.

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    Reputations

    5.0 hrs • 9/20/16 • Unabridged
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  12. 11.0 hrs • 9/20/2016 • Unabridged

    One night an eighteen year old girl recently arrived in London from Ireland to study drama, meets an older actor and a tumultuous relationship ensues.  Set across the bedsits and squats of mid-nineties north London, The Lesser Bohemians is a story about love and innocence, joy and discovery - the grip of the past and the struggle to be new again.

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    The Lesser Bohemians

    11.0 hrs • 9/20/16 • Unabridged
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  13. 10.1 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    Set in the Pacific Northwest in the jittery, jacked-up early ’90s, Shelter in Place is a stylish literary novel about the hereditary nature of mental illness, the fleeting intensity of youth, the obligations of family, and the consequences of all-consuming love. Summer 1991. Joseph March, a twenty-one-year-old working-class kid from Seattle, is on top of the world. He has just graduated college and his future beckons, unencumbered and magnificent. But Joe’s life implodes when he starts to suffer the symptoms of severe bipolar disorder and, shortly after, his mother kills a man she’s never met with a hammer. Joe moves to White Pine, Oregon, where his mother is in jail and his father has set up house to be near her. He is joined by Tess Wolff, a fiercely independent woman with whom he has fallen passionately in love. The lives of Joe, Tess, and Joe’s father fall into the slow rhythm of daily prison visits and beer and pizza at a local bar. Meanwhile, Anne-Marie March, Joe’s mother, is gradually becoming a local heroine as many begin to see her crime as a furious, exasperated act of righteous rebellion. Tess too has fallen under her spell. Spurred on by Anne-Marie’s example, Tess enlists Joe in a secret, violent plan that will forever change their lives. With an eerie magnetism, a feel for the battered spirit of modern America comparable to that of the best contemporary fiction, and characters as relatable and memorable as Miles and Alaska in John Green’s Looking for Alaska, Shelter in Place tells a story about the things in life we are willing to die for, and those for which we’re willing to kill.

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    Shelter in Place by Alexander Maksik

    Shelter in Place

    10.1 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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  14. 11.8 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    For fans of Joshua Cohen and Ben Lerner, After James captures the dystopian strangeness of our current world. A neuroscientist walks out of her life and isolates herself in the woods, intending to blow the whistle on a pharmaceutical company and its creativity drug gone wrong. A recently orphaned graduate school dropout is hired as a “literary detective” to decode the work of a mysterious Internet poet who writes about disappearances and murders with an inexplicably precise knowledge of private details. And a virologist discovers her identity has been stolen by a conceptual artist in whose stories someone always goes missing. Ali, James, and Celia exist in worlds where implausibilities that once belonged to science fiction, ancient superstition, or dystopian visions are real or impending. Set in great cities, remote regions, and deadly borderlands, Michael Helm’s groundbreaking novel, After James, is told in three parts, each gesturing toward a different fiction genre: the gothic horror, the detective novel, and the apocalyptic. Science and art become characters, and secrets form, hidden in the codes of genetic sequences, poems, and the patterns of political violence. Part to part, elements repeat―otherworldly weather, disturbing artwork, buried corpses―and amid these echoes, a larger mystery arises, one that joins artifice to nature and fiction to reality, delivering us into the troubling wonder of the present world.

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    After James by Michael Helm

    After James

    11.8 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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  15. 5.5 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    From the celebrated author of You Too Can Have a Body like Mine, a thought-provoking, often unsettling story collection that consists, broadly, of narrative diagrams of the three main stages in a human life: birth, life, and death. Alexandra Kleeman’s debut novel You Too Can Have a Body like Mine earned her comparisons to Thomas Pynchon, Don DeLillo, Ben Marcus, and Tom Perrotta. It was praised by the New York Times as “a powerful allegory of our civilization’s many maladies, artfully and elegantly articulated, by one of the young wise women of our generation.” In her second book, a collection of twelve stories irresistibly seductive in their strangeness, she explores human life from beginning to end: the distress of birth into a world already formed; the brief and confusing period of “living” where we understand what is expected of us and struggle to do it; and the death-y period toward the end where we sense it is ending and will end only partially understood, at best. The title is taken from one of the stories (“Intimation”), but is also a play on Wordsworth’s “Intimations of Immortality”—only in this case it’s not clear exactly what is being intimated, but it’s nothing so gleaming and good as Immortality. The middle, “Living” section of the book, is fleshed out with a set of stories that borrow more from traditional realist fiction to illustrate the inner lives of the characters. At once familiar and mysterious, these stories have an eerie resonance as its characters find themselves in new and surprising situations. An unnamed woman enters a room with no exit and a ready-made life; the disappearance of people, objects, and memory creates an apocalypse; the art of dance is used to try to tame a feral child; the key to surviving a house-party lies in knowing the difference between fake and real blood. Elegant, surprising, wondrous, and haunting, Intimations is an utterly transporting collection from one of our most ingenious and brilliant young writers.

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    Intimations by Alexandra Kleeman

    Intimations

    5.5 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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  16. 13.1 hrs • 9/13/2016 • Unabridged

    Now available for the first time in audiobook format, a powerful literary classic from one of contemporary fiction’s most acclaimed and important writers, Russell Banks’ Continental Drift is a masterful novel of hope lost and gained, and a gripping, indelible story of fragile lives uprooted and transformed by injustice, disappointment, and the seductions and realities of the American dream.

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    Continental Drift by Russell Banks

    Continental Drift

    13.1 hrs • 9/13/16 • Unabridged
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