New Books! 11/10/15

Destiny and Power: The American Odyssey of George Herbert Walker Bush by Jon Meacham (speaking & signing 11/17)

Pulitzer Prize winning author Jon Meacham chronicles the life of George Herbert Walker Bush. Drawing on President Bush’s personal diaries, on the diaries of his wife, Barbara, and on extraordinary access to the forty-first president and his family, Meacham paints an intimate and surprising portrait of an intensely private man who led the nation through tumultuous times. From the Oval Office to Camp David, from his study in the private quarters of the White House to Air Force One, from the fall of the Berlin Wall to the first Gulf War to the end of Communism, Destiny and Power charts the thoughts, decisions, and emotions of a modern president who may have been the last of his kind.

The Magic Strings of Frankie Presto by Mitch Albom (speaking & signing 12/1)

“It is the Soul of Music itself that tells the life tale of Frankie Presto…Presto’s youth is comprised of the tragic and miraculous all at once.  As this wayward orphan progresses into manhood it is impressive how many lives he touches and affects both with his personality and his music.  His undaunted spirit takes him far, accompanied by other forces of which he will not be aware for the majority of his life. This is a book about music, as told by music, that never falls flat. It’s divine intricacies will inspire readers and reverberate with them long after it’s conclusion.”

Dear Mr. You by Mary-Louise Parker (speaking & signing 1/12)

A wonderfully unconventional literary debut from award-winning actress Mary Louise Parker, Dr. Mr. You renders the singular arc of a woman’s life through letters composed to the men, real and hypothetical, who have informed the person she is today. Beginning with the grandfather she never knew, the letters range from a missive to the beloved priest from her childhood to remembrances of former lovers, and reveal the complexity and power to be found in relationships both loving and fraught.

The Bassoon King: My Life in Art, Faith, and Idiocy by Rainn Wilson (signed copies available!)

For nine seasons Rainn Wilson played Dwight Schrute, everyone’s favorite work nemesis and beet farmer. Now, he’s ready to tell his own story and explain how he came up with his incredibly unique sense of humor and perspective on life. He explains how he grew up bone-numbingly nerdy before there was even a modicum of cool attached to the word. The Bassoon King chronicles his journey from nerd to drama geek, his years of mild debauchery and struggles as a young actor in New York, his many adventures and insights about The Office, and finally, Wilson’s achievement of success and satisfaction, both in his career and spiritually, reconnecting with the artistic and creative values of the Baha i faith he grew up in.

Refund: Stories by Karen E. Bender (a National Book Award finalist!)

We think about it every day, sometimes every hour: Money. Who has it. Who doesn’t. How you get it. How you don’t. Bender uses this very powerful force to pull together a unified collection of stories that deeply explore the ways in which money and the subsequent estimation of value affect the lives of her characters. The stories in Refund reflect our contemporary world–swindlers, reality show creators, desperate artists, siblings, parents–who struggle to figure out how to obtain money, how to give it, earn it, lose it, all the while trying to answer the question: What is the real definition of worth?

A Wild Swan: And Other Tales by Michael Cunningham

Fairy tales for our times from the Pulitzer Prize winning author of The Hours. Here are the moments that our fairy tales forgot or deliberately concealed: the years after a spell is broken, the rapturous instant of a miracle unexpectedly realized, or the fate of a prince only half cured of a curse. The Beast stands ahead of you in line at the convenience store, buying smokes and a Slim Jim, his devouring smile aimed at the cashier. A malformed little man with a knack for minor acts of wizardry goes to disastrous lengths to procure a child. A loutish and lazy Jack prefers living in his mother’s basement to getting a job, until the day he trades a cow for a handful of magic beans. Illustrated by Yuko Shimizu, rarely have our bedtime stories been this dark, this perverse, or this true.

The Big Green Tent by Ludmila Ulitskaya, translated by Polly Gannon

With epic breadth and intimate detail, Ludmila Ulitskaya’s tells the story of three school friends who meet in Moscow in the 1950s and go on to embody the heroism, folly, compromise, and hope of the Soviet dissident experience. These three boys–an orphaned poet; a gifted, fragile pianist; and a budding photographer with a talent for collecting secrets–struggle to reach adulthood in a society where their heroes have been censored and exiled. Rich with love stories, intrigue, and a cast of dissenters and spies, The Big Green Tent offers a panoramic survey of life after Stalin and a dramatic investigation into the prospects for individual integrity in a society defined by the KGB.

The Sandman: Overture (Deluxe) by Neil Gaiman

Twenty-five years since The Sandman first changed the landscape of modern comics, Neil Gaiman’s legendary series is back in a deluxe edition! The Sandman: Overture heralds New York Times best-selling writer Neil Gaiman’s return to the art form that made him famous, ably abetted by artistic luminary JH Williams III (Batwoman, Promethea), whose lush, widescreen images provide an epic scope to The Sandman‘s origin story. From the birth of a galaxy to the moment that Morpheus is captured, The Sandman: Overture will feature cameo appearances by fan-favorite characters such as The Corinthian, Merv Pumpkinhead and, of course, the Dream King’s siblings: Death, Desire, Despair, Delirium, Destruction and Destiny.

Borrowed Time by Greg Leitech Smith (speaking & signing this Sunday, 11/15 at 2PM!)

Greg will be here this Sunday to read from and sign this sequel to Chronal Engine. Join us at 2PM! In this time-travel dinosaur adventure, Max Pierson-Takahashi and his friend Petra return to the days of the dinosaurs, where they must survive attacks from mosasaurs, tyrannosaurs, and other deadly creatures, including a vengeful, pistol-toting girl from the 1920s. The fast pace, mind-bending time twists, and Greg Leitich Smith s light, humorous touch make this an exciting, fun choice for readers looking for adventure and nonstop action.

Sam Phillips: The Man Who Invented Rock ‘n’ Roll by Peter Guralnick

Peter Guralnick brings us the life of Sam Phillips, the visionary genius who single-handedly steered the revolutionary path of Sun Records. The music that he shaped in his tiny Memphis studio with artists as diverse as Elvis Presley, Ike Turner, Howlin’ Wolf, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Johnny Cash, introduced a sound that had never been heard before. He brought forth a singular mix of black and white voices passionately proclaiming the vitality of the American vernacular tradition while at the same time declaring, once and for all, a new, “integrated” musical day. This is an ardent, unrestrained portrait of an American original as compelling in his own right as Mark Twain, Walt Whitman, or Thomas Edison.

The Mission Chinese Food Cookbook by Danny Bowien and Chris Ying

Mission Chinese Food began as a pop-up in San Francisco’s Mission District. Now, hungry diners line up outside waiting hours for platters of Sizzling Cumin Lamb, Thrice-Cooked Bacon, fiery Kung Pao Pastrami, and pungent Salt-Cod Fried Rice. Now Danny Bowien, chef and cofounder, gives us an exuberant cookbook that tells the story of an unconventional idea born in San Francisco that spread cross-country, propelled by wildly inventive recipes that have changed what it means to cook Chinese food in America, while getting a look into the background and insights of one of the most creative young chefs today.

Winter (Lunar Chronicles #4) by Marissa Meyer

Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mar her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana. But Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend. Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters? “Marissa Meyer does these fairy tale retellings so well, and with strong heroines too! We’re so excited the Lunar Chronicles has a new book, but sad it’s come to an end. Don’t miss this awesome series if you’re a fan of science-fiction or fairy tales!”

Soundless by Richelle Mead

For as long as Fei can remember, there has been no sound in her village, where rocky terrain and frequent avalanches prevent residents from self-sustaining. Fei and her people are at the mercy of a zipline that carries food up the treacherous cliffs from Beiguo, a mysterious faraway kingdom. When villagers begin to lose their sight, deliveries from the zipline shrink and many go hungry. Fei s home, the people she loves, and her entire existence is plunged into crisis, under threat of darkness and starvation. But soon Fei is awoken in the night by a searing noise, and sound becomes her weapon. Richelle Mead takes readers on a triumphant journey from the peak of Fei s jagged mountain village to the valley of Beiguo, where a startling truth and an unlikely romance will change her life forever….”

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