NEW RELEASES FOR JUNE 2016
Grunt: the Curious Science of Humans at War, by Mary Roach, Abby Elvidge
Grunt tackles the science behind some of a soldier’s most challenging adversaries—panic, exhaustion, heat, noise—and introduces us to the scientists who seek to conquer them. Mary Roach dodges hostile fire with the U.S. Marine Corps Paintball Team as part of a study on hearing loss and survivability in combat. She visits the fashion design studio of U.S. Army Natick Labs and learns why a zipper is a problem for a sniper. She visits a repurposed movie studio where amputee actors help prepare Marine Corps medics for the shock and gore of combat wounds... and much more.
The Hour of Land: A Personal
Topography of America’s National Parks, by Terry
America's national parks have provided public breathing spaces in a
world in which such spaces are steadily disappearing, which is why close to 300
million people visit the parks each year. To honor the centennial of the
National Park Service, Williams brings us a celebration of 12 of our national
parks, from Yellowstone to Acadia - what they mean to us, and what we mean to
them. Williams traces the roots of her family in Downeast Maine,
recalling her love of the coastal islands and green, green woodlands. The Hour
of Land is a natural history meditation on why wild lands matter to the soul of
Terry Tempest Williams is
the author of the beloved memoir When Women Were Birds.
Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold and the Fate of the American Revolution, by Nathaniel Philbrick
In June 1776, as this enthralling new book opens, the vulnerable Continental army under an unsure George Washington (who had never commanded a large force in battle) evacuates New York after a devastating defeat by the largest naval fleet in the history of the world. In September, near the Canadian border, his favorite general, Benedict Arnold, accomplishes a miracle victory on Lake Champlain. Four years later, as the book ends, Washington has vanquished his demons but Arnold is on trial for treason, and America is forced to realize that the real threat to their liberties might not come from without but from within.
Dinner With Edward: A Story
of an Unexpected Friendship
The charming story of the
author’s friendship with her friend’s widower father. Sensuous details of meals
shared, but more than a foodie memoir, this is the exploration of friendship,
aging, loss and how we define our identities as the world changes around us. A
warm, feel-good tale with succulent recipes.
View From the Cheap Seats, selected Non-Fiction, by Neil Gaiman
An enthralling collection of nonfiction essays on a myriad of topics—from art and artists to dreams, myths, and memories—observed in Neil Gaiman’s probing, amusing, and distinctive style. An inquisitive observer, thoughtful commentator, and assiduous craftsman, Neil Gaiman has long been celebrated for the sharp intellect and startling imagination that informs his bestselling fiction. Now, The View from the Cheap Seats brings together for the first time ever more than sixty pieces of his outstanding nonfiction.
Brilliant Beacons: A History of the American Lighthouse, by Eric Jay Dolin
Beginning with our 300-year-old Boston Light and extending across to the West Coast lighthouses, this is a a work rich in maritime lore and brimming with original historical detail.
Tribe: On Homecoming and Belonging, by Sebastian Junger
We have a strong instinct to belong to small groups defined by clear purpose and understanding--"tribes." This tribal connection has been largely lost in modern society, but regaining it may be the key to our survival.
Tribal society has been exerting an almost gravitational pull on Westerners for hundreds of years, and the reason lies deep in our evolutionary past as a communal species. The most recent example of that attraction is combat veterans who come home to find themselves missing the incredibly intimate bonds of platoon life. The loss of closeness that comes at the end of deployment may explain the high rates of post-traumatic stress disorder suffered by military veterans today.
Most Blessed of the Patriarchs: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination, by Annette Gordon-Reed, Peter S. Onuf
Annette Gordon-Reed teams up with America's leading Jefferson scholar, Peter S. Onuf, to present an absorbing and revealing character study that dispels the many clichés that have accrued over the years about our third president. Challenging the widely prevalent belief that Jefferson remains so opaque as to be unknowable, the authors—through their careful analysis, painstaking research, and vivid prose—create a portrait of Jefferson, as he might have painted himself, one "comprised of equal parts sun and shadow".
Barkskins, a novel by
A dazzling, violent,
magnificently dramatic novel about the taking down of the world’s
forests. In the 17th century two penniless Frenchmen, René Sel and Charles
Duquet, arrive in New France. Bound to a feudal lord for three years in
exchange for land, they become wood-cutters—barkskins. René suffers
extraordinary hardship, oppressed by the forest he is charged with clearing. He
is forced to marry a Mi’kmaw woman; their descendants live trapped between two
cultures. But Duquet, crafty and ruthless, runs away to become a fur trader and
sets up a timber business. Proulx tells the stories of their descendants over
300 years—their travels across North America, Europe, China and New Zealand,
under brutal conditions—the revenge of rivals, accidents, pestilence, Indian
attacks, and cultural annihilation. They seize a presumed infinite resource,
leaving the modern-day characters face to face with possible ecological
A Hero of France, by Alan Furst
Occupied Paris for the first time since Red Gold (1999 pub), Furst has set this novel during the war itself, instead of on the eve of the war. Members of the French Resistance network—young and old, aristocrats and schoolteachers, defiant heroes and ordinary people—all engaged in clandestine actions in the cause of freedom. From the secret hotels and Nazi-infested nightclubs of Paris to the villages of Rouen and Orleans. An action-packed story of romance, intrigue, spies, bravery, and air battles.
Before the Fall, a novel by
When a private plane plunges into the
ocean off Martha’s Vineyard, there are only two survivors, Scott, an artist who
swam miles to shore towing the 4-year-old son of a prominent and wealthy
family. Was it merely by chance that so many influential people perished
or was something far more sinister at work? This is a most excellent
and chilling mystery with fast-paced action every step of the way.
Homegoing: a novel by
Two half-sisters, Effia
and Esi, are born into different villages in eighteenth-century Ghana. Effia is
married off to an Englishman and lives in comfort in the palatial rooms of Cape
Coast Castle. Her sister, Esi, is imprisoned beneath her in the castle’s
dungeons, sold with thousands of others into the Gold Coast’s booming slave
trade and shipped off to America, where her children and grandchildren will be
raised in slavery. We follow Effia’s descendants as the Fante and Asante
nations wrestle with the slave trade and British colonization. The other thread
follows Esi and her children into America. From the plantations of the South to
the Civil War, from the coal mines of Alabama, to the jazz clubs of Harlem,
right up through the present day, Homegoing captures how the
memory of captivity came to be inscribed in the soul of a nation.
SMOKE, a novel by
Imagine a world where every
dark thought you had was revealed by a wisp of smoke. Set in an alternative
England, this tale reveals what really lies behind this sinful soot through the
eyes of three teenagers who begin to question all they have been told. A
brilliant combination of fantasy and historical fiction, where layers of
mystery and glimmers of truth will keep you feverishly turning pages until the
Here's to Us, a novel by
Laurel Thorpe, Belinda Rowe,
and Scarlett Oliver share only two things; a love for the man they all married,
Deacon Thorpe--a celebrity chef with an insatiable appetite for life--and a
passionate dislike of one another. All three are remarkable, spirited women,
but they couldn't be more different. Laurel: Deacon's high school sweetheart
and an effortlessly beautiful social worker; Belinda: a high-maintenance
Hollywood diva; and Scarlett: a sexy southern belle floating by on her family
money and her fabulous looks. They've established a delicate understanding over
the years--they avoid each other at all costs.
The Curious Charms of Arthur
Pepper, by Phaedra Patrick
Arthur Pepper lives a simple life. He gets out of bed at precisely 7:30 a.m.,
just as he did when his wife, Miriam, was alive. He dresses in the same gray
slacks and mustard sweater vest, waters his fern, Frederica, and heads out to
But on the one-year
anniversary of Miriam's death, something changes. Sorting through Miriam's
possessions, Arthur finds an exquisite gold charm bracelet he's never seen
before. What follows is a surprising and unforgettable odyssey that takes
Arthur from London to Paris and as far as India in an epic quest to find out
the truth about his wife's secret life before they met—a journey that leads him
to find hope, healing and self-discovery in the most unexpected places.
FEATURING BOOKS About & By MAINE AUTHORS
The One In A Million Boy, by Monica Wood
This novel is fantastic. Beautiful writing, wonderful characters - the kind you want to be friends with yourself. Just quirky enough and not too sentimental with themes of love, loss and aging. This is a Hopeful novel of friendship based in Portland, Maine.Highly recommended!
Finding a Way to Play: The Pioneering Spirit of Women in Basketball, by Joanne Lannin
Everybody’s Fool: a novel by Richard Russo
Returning to North Bath, NY, no one writes better about the quirks, petty jealousies, hard times, humor and heartbreak of small-town America. This is good, old-fashioned storytelling at its finest.
American Character: A History of the Epic Struggle Between Individual Liberty and the Common Good, by Colin Woodard
Woodard examines the history of and solutions to the key American question of how to reconcile individual liberty with the maintenance of a free society. The struggle between individual rights and the good of the community, from the run up to the Civil War to the fights between the Federalists, the Progressives, the New Dealers and the civil rights movement, he traces these two key strands through four centuries of the American existence.
One Wild Bird at a Time: Portraits of Individual Lives, by Bernd Heinrich
A captivating account of the beloved author's encounters with individual wild birds. Each chapter focuses on a different bird, going into fascinating detail that will engage the reader immensley.
Rebel's Wrath, a historical novel by Christoper Morin
A tale of Private
Sherman Jackson, of the 20th Maine Volunteer Infantry Regiment,
who survived the deadly battle of Gettysburg. At the end of the war, Sherman
obeys a summons from his father to return to his home in North Scarborough, and
help save the family business, where he finds himself embroiled in town
troubles and suspected of unlawful activities. He must use all of his resources
to resolve the problems and save himself from destruction.