Summary: He was born Temujin, the son of a khan, raised in a clan of hunters migrating....+
He was born Temujin, the son of a khan, raised in a clan of hunters migrating across the rugged steppe. Temujin’s young life was shaped by a series of brutal acts: the betrayal of his father by a neighboring tribe and the abandonment of his entire family, cruelly left to die on the harsh plain. But Temujin endured--and from that moment on, he was driven by a singular fury: to survive in the face of death, to kill before being killed, and to conquer enemies who could come without warning from beyond the horizon.
Through a series of courageous raids against the Tartars, Temujin’s legend grew--and so did the challenges he faced, from the machinations of a Chinese ambassador to the brutal abduction of his young wife, Borte. Blessed with ferocious courage, it was the young warrior’s ability to learn, to imagine, and to judge the hearts of others that propelled him to greater and greater power, until Temujin was chasing a vision: to unite many tribes into one, to make the earth tremble under the hoofbeats of a thousand warhorses, to subject unknown nations and even empires to his will.
Summary: First published in 1846, Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novella The Double is a classic....+
First published in 1846, Fyodor Dostoyevsky's novella The Double is a classic doppelgänger and the second major work published by the author. It is the story of Yakov Petrovich Golyadkin, a government clerk who believes that a fellow clerk has taken over his identity and is determined to bring about his ruin. Considered the most Gogolesque of Dostoevsky's works, the novella brilliantly depicts Golyadkin's descent into madness in a way that is hauntingly poetic. The Double illustrates Dostoevsky's uncanny ability at capturing the complexity of human emotion, especially the darker side of the human psyche.
Summary: This is the book the CIA does not want you to read. For over sixty years, the....+
This is the book the CIA does not want you to read. For over sixty years, the CIA has maintained a formidable reputation in spite of its terrible record, never disclosing its blunders to the American public. It spun its own truth to the nation while reality lay buried in classified archives. Now, Pulitzer Prize–winning New York Times reporter Tim Weiner offers a stunning indictment of the CIA, a deeply flawed organization that has never deserved America’s confidence.
Legacy of Ashes is based on more than fifty thousand documents, primarily from the archives of the CIA. Everything is on the record. There are no anonymous sources, no blind quotations. With shocking revelations that will make headlines, Tim Weiner gets at the truth and tells how the CIA’s failures have profoundly jeopardized our national security.
Summary: Billy Budd, an orphaned, illegitimate child suffused with innocence, openness,....+
Billy Budd, an orphaned, illegitimate child suffused with innocence, openness, and natural charisma, has been impressed into service aboard the HMS Bellipotent. He is adored by the crew but for unexplained reasons arouses the antagonism of the ship’s master-at-arms, John Claggart, who falsely accuses Billy of conspiracy to mutiny. Set in 1797, Billy Budd exploits the tension of this period during the war between England and France to create a tale of satanic treachery, tragedy, and great pathos that explores human relationships and the inherently ambiguous nature of man-made justice.
Melville’s stories are masterpieces to be appreciated on more than one level. They are rich with symbolism and spiritual depth and show the timeless poetic power of Melville’s writing as he consciously uses the disguise of allegory in various ways and to various ends.
Summary: With its intense mix of mystery, adventure, and a surprise ending, Benito Cereno....+
With its intense mix of mystery, adventure, and a surprise ending, Benito Cereno at first seems merely a provocative example from the genre Herman Melville created with his early bestselling novels of the sea. However, most Melville scholars consider it his most sophisticated work, and many, such as novelist Ralph Ellison, have hailed it as the most piercing look at slavery in all of American literature.
Based on a real life incident--the character names remain unchanged--Benito Cereno tells what happens when an American merchant ship comes upon a mysterious Spanish ship where the nearly all-black crew and their white captain are starving and yet remain hostile to offers of help. Melville’s most focused political work, it is rife with allusions (a ship named after Santo Domingo, site of the slave revolt led by Toussaint L’Ouverture), analogies (does the good-hearted yet obtuse American captain refer to the American character itself?), and mirroring images that deepen our reflections on human oppression and its resultant depravities.
It is, in short, a multilayered masterpiece that rewards repeated readings and deepens our appreciation of Melville’s genius.
Summary: The setting for this historical romance is the French and Indian War, a war....+
The setting for this historical romance is the French and Indian War, a war which pitted England and its American colonists against the French and their Indian allies. Cora and Alice Munro, the daughters of an English commander, are on their way to join their father. Escorting them through the wilderness are Alice’s fiancé, Major Duncan Heyward, and the treacherous Indian Magua, who secretly serves the French. Magua’s plan to betray the party to the Iroquois is foiled by the scout Hawkeye and his companions, old chief Chingachgook and his son Uncas, the “last of the Mohicans.” Through a series of fights and rescues, this trio of loyal friends, who embody a code of manly honor and heroics, defend the virtuous sisters from Magua and his Iroquois thugs. This timeless tale will enchant readers with its panoramic view of America at its conception.
Summary: Danny North knew from early childhood that his family was different--and that....+
Danny North knew from early childhood that his family was different--and that he was different from them. While his cousins were learning how to create the things that commoners called fairies, ghosts, golems, trolls, werewolves, and other such miracles that were the heritage of the North family, Danny worried that he would never show a talent, never form an outself. He grew up in the rambling old house, filled with dozens of cousins and aunts and uncles, all ruled by his father. Their home was isolated in the mountains of western Virginia, far from town, far from schools, far from other people. There are many secrets in the House, and many rules that Danny must follow. There is a secret library with only a few dozen books, and none of them in English--but Danny and his cousins are expected to become fluent in the language of the books. While Danny’s cousins are free to create magic whenever they like, they must never do it where outsiders might see. Unfortunately, there are some secrets kept from Danny as well. And that will lead to disaster for the North family.
Summary: In Space Boy, Orson Scott Card takes listeners into a strange and wonderful....+
In Space Boy, Orson Scott Card takes listeners into a strange and wonderful future, where people from another world regularly visit Earth, usually without being noticed. And when humans travel to their world, they find themselves dangerously weak and powerless, until Todd finds a way to set both worlds to rights.