Mary Higgins Clark Award Winner! OLD RIVALRIES NEVER DIE. BUT SOME RIVALS DO. Juliet Townsend is used to losing. Back in high school, she lost every track team race to her best friend, Madeleine Bell. Ten years later, she’s still running behind, stuck in a dead-end job cleaning rooms at the Mid-Night Inn, a one-star motel that attracts only the cheap or the desperate. But what life won’t provide, Juliet takes. Then one night, Maddy checks in. Well-dressed, flashing a huge diamond ring, and as beautiful as ever, Maddy has it all. By the next morning, though, Juliet is no longer jealous of Maddy—she’s the chief suspect in her murder. To protect herself, Juliet investigates the circumstances of her friend’s death. But what she learns about Maddy’s life might cost Juliet everything she didn’t realize she had. From the Trade Paperback edition.
In these eight darkly comic stories, Tom Howard explores the instincts for violence and tenderness that mark his character's lives. A brother and sister wander the pier after a deadly plague destroys most of humanity. A high school bully struggles to overcome his demons. A man in the grips of dementia is visited by his children's ghosts. The people in these blistering tales grapple with past mistakes, trying to navigate their way toward redemption and resurrection and failing often—but always with a ferocious heart. Their unforgettable voices guide us through schoolyards, cemeteries, drive-in theaters, and the rich landscapes of their own imaginations. Equal parts funny, tragic, and wise, Fierce Pretty Things is a striking debut that teaches us how to live in a world as cruel as it is beautiful.
Pulitzer Prize winner Stephen Dunn returns with his signature morbid wit, intellectual daring, and emotive powers on full display. In this meditative and incisive collection, Stephen Dunn draws on themes of morality and mortality to explore the innermost machinations of human nature. Shifting in tone but never wavering in their essential honesty, these poems reflect on desire, restraint, and the roles we play in an ever-evolving society. In Pagan Virtues, Dunn reminds us of his penetrating eye for the universal and the specific, and his ability to highlight our contradictions with tenderness and wit. Two poems dedicated to Dunn’s eulogist, in advance, bookend the collection. The first introduces us to the poet’s sardonic candor and unflinching gaze at his own mortality, while the latter, written nineteen years later, reflects on what it means to continue to live in the “despoiled and radiant now.” A stunning sequence on the relationship between the speaker and “Mrs. Cavendish” examines an intimacy sustained and repelled by politics, philosophy, and attraction. Wry, observational, and wide-reaching, Pagan Virtues offers indispensable truths from a master of contemporary poetry.
Her mother was a beautiful narcissist. Her father was charming, but a monster. Travel with Lauren from her parent's topless jazz club in Australia to her wild-child years growing up in the heart of Seattle's grunge scene in the 1990's. Lauren Jayne's memoir transports you into her roller coaster life by page one. From her nursery school days spent hopscotching over the black and white tiled floors of her parent's topless jazz club in sunny, sexy Sydney to coming of age smack dab in the middle of the Seattle burgeoning grunge era. On a mission to ditch the chaos filled life she was thrust into from birth, she finds the family she's always longed for in her tight group of friends. Here, she'll experience her first love, first loss and finally find what she's always been searching for in the most unlikely place. A compelling memoir that will transport you into Lauren Jayne's bizarre and larger than life world where you'll discover that what we are really searching for has been with us all along. You cannot read this book without gaining a new perspective on life.
In 2006, Tara June Winch's startling debut Swallow the Air was published to acclaim. Its poetic yet visceral style announced the arrival a fresh and exciting new talent. This 10th anniversary edition celebrates its important contribution to Australian literature. When May's mother dies suddenly, she and her brother Billy are taken in by Aunty. However, their loss leaves them both searching for their place in a world that doesn't seem to want them. While Billy takes his own destructive path, May sets out to find her father and her Aboriginal identity. Her journey leads her from the Australian east coast to the far north, but it is the people she meets, not the destinations, that teach her what it is to belong. Swallow the Air is an unforgettable story of living in a torn world and finding the thread to help sew it back together.
"Of Older Men and Pretty Young Things" is a semi-fictional examination of life. The book takes a cynical look a lot of the things we hold dear in life (lying, cheating, young girls, children, religion and so on) and also some things we do not hold so dear (like in-laws, those ogres!). Why do we fall in love with the women we do? Beauty doesn't seem to be the answer because we do not always fall for the prettiest young things. Some of the things we do in life are also the direct causes of illnesses like high blood pressure. Trysting with school girls, for instance, is a thrilling, liberating, orgasmic thing, but it is also the cause of much misery, both emotional and financial. Then there is the matter of Christianity and the mystery that is Jesus Christ... Well, every facet of life is a source of misery...or humour... Happy reading!
“A Hollywood native from the wrong side of the Walk of Fame makes a play for star status” (Cosmopolitan) in Shanna Mahin’s acclaimed novel, called “quite a breakout” by The New York Times. Jess Dunne is third-generation Hollywood, but her star on the boulevard has yet to materialize. Sure, she’s got a Santa Monica address and a working actress roommate, but with her nowhere barista job in a town that acknowledges zeroes only as a dress size, she’s a dead girl walking. Enter Jess’s mother—a failed actress who puts the strange in estrangement. She dives headlong into her daughter’s downward spiral, forcing Jess to muster all her spite and self-preservation to snag a career upgrade. As a personal assistant for a famous (and secretly agoraphobic) film composer, Jess’s workdays are now filled with shopping for luxury goods and cooking in his perfectly designed kitchen. Jess kills at cooking, a talent that only serves her intensifying urge to dig in to Los Angeles’s celebrity buffet. When her food garners the attention of an actress on the rise, well, she’s all too willing to throw it in with the composer and upgrade again, a decision that will have far-reaching ramifications that could explode all her relationships. All the while, her mother looms ever closer, forcing Jess to confront the traumatic secrets she’s been running from all her life. Oh! You Pretty Things is a dizzying ride at the carnival of fame, a fast-paced and sharply funny work that dares to imagine what happens when we go over the top in a town of gilded excess. From the Hardcover edition.
#1 New York Times Bestseller Newbery Honor Book Winner of the Schneider Family Book Award (Middle School) Wall Street Journal Best Children's Books of 2015 New York Public Library's 100 Books for Reading and Sharing An exceptionally moving story of triumph against all odds set during World War II, from the acclaimed author of Jefferson’s Sons and for fans of Number the Stars. Ten-year-old Ada has never left her one-room apartment. Her mother is too humiliated by Ada’s twisted foot to let her outside. So when her little brother Jamie is shipped out of London to escape the war, Ada doesn’t waste a minute—she sneaks out to join him. So begins a new adventure for Ada, and for Susan Smith, the woman who is forced to take the two kids in. As Ada teaches herself to ride a pony, learns to read, and watches for German spies, she begins to trust Susan—and Susan begins to love Ada and Jamie. But in the end, will their bond be enough to hold them together through wartime? Or will Ada and her brother fall back into the cruel hands of their mother? This masterful work of historical fiction is equal parts adventure and a moving tale of family and identity—a classic in the making.