For centuries, men and women have manned lighthouses to ensure the safe passage of ships. It is a lonely job, and a thankless one for the most part. Until something goes wrong. Until a ship is in distress. In the 23rd century, this job has moved into outer space. A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at many times the speed of light. These beacons are built to be robust. They never break down. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to.
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◦ Dip in the Pool
◦ Edward the Conqueror
◦ Galloping Foxley
◦ Genesis and Catastrophe
◦ Georgy Porgy
◦ Lamb to the Slaughter
◦ Man From the South
◦ Mr. Botibol
◦ Mrs. Bixby and the Colonel's Coat
◦ My Lady Love, My Dove
◦ Nunc Dimittis
◦ Parson's Pleasure
◦ Royal Jelly
◦ The Butler
◦ The Hitchhiker
◦ The Landlady
◦ The Sound Machine
◦ The Umbrella Man
◦ The Way Up to Heaven
◦ Vengeance is Mine Inc.
◦ William and Mary
Take a pinch of unease. Stir it into a large dollop of the macabre, add a generous helping of dark and stylish wit, garnish with the bizarre and what do you have?
Roald Dahl at his brilliant, hypnotizing best, cooking up some of the most unusual stories ever told. Here in one volume are *Tales of the Unexpected* and *More Tales of the Unexpected*, making this a superb compendium of vengeance, surprise and dark delight.
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Three classic stories for young adults about the wonder and power of our connections with nature and each other.
Gene Stratton-Porter was a pioneer naturalist, wilderness advocate, and author. She wrote both fiction and nonfiction about the woods and swampland that she loved so much, and her tales of finding independence and courage through building a relationship with nature touched millions of readers both when she was writing and to this day. In The Best of Gene Stratton-Porter, three of her most timeless classics are collected in one volume. A Girl of the Limberlost, Freckles, and The Harvester demonstrate the power of Stratton-Porter’s writing for young people as she explores how the natural world can provide not just a means of sustenance, but also a source of strength in the face of the world’s difficulties and, ultimately, a place where you can be true to yourself.
In both A Girl of the Limberlost and Freckles, we see young Elnora Cornstock and an orphan boy known only as Freckles develop a love of Limberlost Swamp, using it to gain independence and find true connections with others. Taking place in the woodlands of the Midwest, The Harvester tells the story of a young man who lives on his own and who heals an ill girl. In each book, nature is a powerful force that helps the characters deal with the pain of their pasts and the uncertainty of the present. With an introduction by award-winning essayist Scott Russell Sanders, The Best of Gene Stratton-Porter brings together three classic novels that deserve a place on any young adult’s bookshelf.
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Algernon Henry Blackwood, CBE (14 March 1869 – 10 December 1951) was an English short story writer and novelist, one of the most prolific writers of ghost stories in the history of the genre. He was also a journalist and a broadcasting narrator. S. T. Joshi has stated that "his work is more consistently meritorious than any weird writer's except Dunsany's" and that his short story collection Incredible Adventures (1914) "may be the premier weird collection of this or any other century"
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The stories in this collection move from Malaya to America and England, and include some of Maugham's most famous tales; 'Flotsam and Jetsam', the story of an old woman trapped for years in a loveless marriage in the remote rubber plantations; 'The Man with the Scar', and notably the opening story 'The Vessel of Wrath', a tale of the unexpected love that grows between a devout missionary nurse and a drunken reprobate. In this second volume of his collected stories, Maugham illustrates his characteristic wry perception of human foibles and his genius for evoking compelling drama from an acute sense of time and place.
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The remarkable true stories in The Boy Behind the Curtain reveal an intimate and rare view of Tim Winton’s imagination at work and play. A chronicler of sudden turnings, brutal revelations and tender sideswipes, Tim Winton has always been in the business of trouble. In his novels chaos waits in the wings and ordinary people are ambushed by events and emotions beyond their control. But as these extraordinarily powerful memoirs show, the abrupt and the headlong are old familiars to the author himself, for in many ways his has been a life shaped by havoc.
In The Boy Behind the Curtain Winton reflects on the accidents, traumatic and serendipitous, that have influenced his view of life and fuelled his distinctive artistic vision. On the unexpected links between car crashes and religious faith, between surfing and writing, and how going to the wrong movie at the age of eight opened him up to a life of the imagination. And in essays on class, fundamentalism, asylum seekers, guns and the natural world he reveals not only the incidents and concerns that have made him the much-loved writer he is, but some of what unites the life and the work.
By turns impassioned, funny, joyous, astonishing, this is Winton’s most personal book to date, an insight into the man who’s held us enthralled for three decades and helped us reshape our view of ourselves. Behind it all, from risk-taking youth to surprise-averse middle age, has been the crazy punt of staking everything on becoming a writer.
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Do lobsters feel pain? Did Franz Kafka have a funny bone? What is John Updike's deal, anyway? And what happens when adult video starlets meet their fans in person?
David Foster Wallace answers these questions and more in essays that are also enthralling narrative adventures. Whether covering the three-ring circus of John McCain's 2000 presidential race, plunging into the wars between dictionary writers, or confronting the World's Largest Lobster Cooker at the annual Maine Lobster Festival, Wallace projects a quality of thought that is uniquely his and a voice as powerful and distinct as any in American letters.
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Greed. Envy. Sex. Property. In her subversively funny and genuinely moving new novel, Jane Smiley nails down several American obsessions with the expertise of a master carpenter.
Forthright, likable Joe Stratford is the kind of local businessman everybody trusts, for good reason. But it’s 1982, and even in Joe’s small town, values are in upheaval: not just property values, either. Enter Marcus Burns, a would-be master of the universe whose years with the IRS have taught him which rules are meant to be broken. Before long he and Joe are new best friends—and partners in an investment venture so complex that no one may ever understand it. Add to this Joe’s roller coaster affair with his mentor’s married daughter. The result is as suspenseful and entertaining as any of Jane Smiley’s fiction.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
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Joyce Carol Oates returns with a dark, romantic, and captivating tale, set in the Great Lakes region of upstate New York—the territory of her remarkably successful New York Times bestseller The Gravedigger's Daughter.
Set in the mythical small city of Sparta, New York, this searing, vividly rendered exploration of the mysterious conjunction of erotic romance and tragic violence in late-twentieth-century America returns to the emotional and geographical terrain of acclaimed author Joyce Carol Oates's previous bestsellers We Were the Mulvaneys and The Gravedigger's Daughter.
When a young wife and mother named Zoe Kruller is found brutally murdered, the Sparta police target two primary suspects, her estranged husband, Delray Kruller, and her longtime lover, Eddy Diehl. In turn, the Krullers' son, Aaron, and Eddy Diehl's daughter, Krista, become obsessed with each other, each believing the other's father is guilty.
Told in halves in the very different voices of Krista and Aaron, Little Bird of Heaven is a classic Oates novel in which the lyricism of intense sexual love is intertwined with the anguish of loss, and tenderness is barely distinguishable from cruelty. By the novel's end, the fated lovers, meeting again as adults, are at last ready to exorcise the ghosts of the past and come to terms with their legacy of guilt, misplaced love, and redemptive yearning.
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The honeymoon is over, as they say, the bride dead by her own hand. Ray Garrett, the grieving husband, convinces the police in Rome of his innocence, but not his thuggish father-in-law, an American painter named Ed Coleman, who shoots him at point-blank range and leaves him for dead. Ray survives, however, and follows Coleman to Venice, where the two fall into an eerie game of cat-and-mouse—Coleman obsessed with vengeance and Ray equally insistent on clearing his conscience, though each is at once the hunter and the hunted in a duel composed of tension, hiding, and guessing, and at times punctuated by violence that, even as each manages to walk away, draws them nearer to death.
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One of the most important and blazingly original writers of his generation, George Saunders is an undisputed master of the short story, and Tenth of December is his most honest, accessible, and moving collection yet.
In the taut opener, “Victory Lap,” a boy witnesses the attempted abduction of the girl next door and is faced with a harrowing choice: Does he ignore what he sees, or override years of smothering advice from his parents and act? In “Home,” a combat-damaged soldier moves back in with his mother and struggles to reconcile the world he left with the one to which he has returned. And in the title story, a stunning meditation on imagination, memory, and loss, a middle-aged cancer patient walks into the woods to commit suicide, only to encounter a troubled young boy who, over the course of a fateful morning, gives the dying man a final chance to recall who he really is. A hapless, deluded owner of an antiques store; two mothers struggling to do the right thing; a teenage girl whose idealism is challenged by a brutal brush with reality; a man tormented by a series of pharmaceutical experiments that force him to lust, to love, to kill—the unforgettable characters that populate the pages of Tenth of December are vividly and lovingly infused with Saunders’s signature blend of exuberant prose, deep humanity, and stylistic innovation.
Writing brilliantly and profoundly about class, sex, love, loss, work, despair, and war, Saunders cuts to the core of the contemporary experience. These stories take on the big questions and explore the fault lines of our own morality, delving into the questions of what makes us good and what makes us human.
Unsettling, insightful, and hilarious, the stories in Tenth of December—through their manic energy, their focus on what is redeemable in human beings, and their generosity of spirit—not only entertain and delight; they fulfill Chekhov’s dictum that art should “prepare us for tenderness.”
Advance praise for *Tenth of December
“Tenth of December shows George Saunders at his most subversive, hilarious, and emotionally piercing. Few writers can encompass that range of adjectives, but Saunders is a true original—restlessly inventive, yet deeply humane.”—Jennifer Egan, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of A Visit from the Goon Squad
“George Saunders is a complete original, unlike anyone else, thank god—and yet still he manages to be the rightful heir to three other complete American originals—Barthelme (the lyricism, the playfulness), Vonnegut (the outrage, the wit, the scope), and Twain (the common sense, the exasperation). There is no author I recommend to people more often—for ten years I’ve urged George Saunders onto everyone and everyone. You want funny? Saunders is your man. You want emotional heft? Saunders again. You want stories that are actually about something—stories that again and again get to the meat of matters of life and death and justice and country? Saunders. There is no one better, no one more essential to our national sense of self and sanity.”—Dave Eggers, author of A Hologram for the King*
From the Hardcover edition.
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In the remote winter landscape a brutal massacre and the kidnapping of a young Iroquois girl violently re-ignites a deep rift between two tribes. The girl’s captor, Bird, is one of the Huron Nation’s great warriors and statesmen. Years have passed since the murder of his family, and yet they are never far from his mind. In the girl, Snow Falls, he recognizes the ghost of his lost daughter, but as he fights for her heart and allegiance, small battles erupt into bigger wars as both tribes face a new, more dangerous threat from afar.
Traveling with the Huron is Christophe, a charismatic missionary who has found his calling among the tribe and devotes himself to learning and understanding their customs and language. An emissary from distant lands, he brings much more than his faith to this new world, with its natural beauty and riches.
As these three souls dance with each other through intricately woven acts of duplicity, their social, political and spiritual worlds collide - and a new nation rises from a world in flux.
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The cathedral Dean, Adam Ayscough, holds a deep love for his parishioners, but he is held captive by an irrational shyness and intimidating manner. He strikes up an unlikely friendship with Isaac Peabody, an obscure watchmaker who does not think he or God have anything in common. This leads to an unusual spiritual awakening that touches the entire community.
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The legendary writer Patricia Highsmith is best remembered today for her chilling psychological thrillers The Talented Mr. Ripley and Strangers on a Train. A critically acclaimed best seller in Europe, Highsmith has for too long been underappreciated in the United States. Starting in 2011, Grove Press will begin to reissue nine of Highsmith’s works. Eleven is Highsmith’s first collection of short stories, an arresting group of dark masterpieces of obsession and foreboding, violence and instability. Here naturalists meet gruesome ends and unhinged heroes disturb our sympathies. This is a captivating, important collection from “one of the truly brilliant short-story writers of the twentieth century” (Otto Penzler). Includes an introduction by Graham Greene.
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The second novel in Chinua Achebe’s masterful African trilogy, following Things Fall Apart and preceding *No Longer at Ease
When Things Fall Apart ends, colonial rule has been introduced to Umuofia, and the character of the nation, its values, freedoms, religious and socio-political foundations have substantially and irrevocably been altered. Arrow of God, the second novel in Chinua Achebe’s The African Trilogy, moves the historical narrative forward. This time, the action revolves around Ezeulu, the headstrong chief priest of the god Ulu, which is worshipped by the six villages of Umuaro. The novel is a meditation on the nature, uses, and responsibility of power and leadership. Ezeulu finds that his authority is increasingly under threat from rivals within his nation and functionaries of the newly established British colonial government. Yet he sees himself as untouchable. He is forced, with tragic consequences, to reconcile conflicting impulses in his own nature—a need to serve the protecting deity of his Umuaro people; a desire to retain control over their religious observances; and a need to gain increased personal power by pushing his authority to the limits. He ultimately fails as he leads his people to their own destruction, and consequently, his personal tragedy arises. Arrow of God* is an unforgettable portrayal of the loss of faith, and the downfall of a man in a society forever altered by colonialism.
*Praise for Arrow of God
***"My favorite novel." —Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
Praise for Chinua Achebe
“A magical writer—one of the greatest of the twentieth century.” —Margaret Atwood
“African literature is incomplete and unthinkable without the works of Chinua Achebe.” —Toni Morrison
“Chinua Achebe is gloriously gifted with the magic of an ebullient, generous, great talent.” —Nadine Gordimer
“Achebe’s influence should go on and on . . . teaching and reminding that all humankind is one.” —The Nation
“The father of African literature in the English language and undoubtedly one of the most important writers of the second half of the twentieth century.” —Caryl Phillips, The Observer
“We are indebted to Achebe for reminding us that art has social and moral dimension—a truth often obscured.” —Chicago Tribune
“He is one of the few writers of our time who has touched us with a code of values that will never be ironic.” —Michael Ondaatje
“For so many readers around the world, it is Chinua Achebe who opened up the magic casements of African fiction.” —Kwame Anthony Appiah
“[Achebe] is one of world literature’s great humane voices.” —Times Literary Supplement
“Achebe is one of the most distinguished artists to emerge from the West African cultural renaissance of the post-war world.” —The Sunday Times (London)
“[Achebe is] a powerful voice for cultural decolonization.” —The Village Voice
“Chinua Achebe has shown that a mind that observes clearly but feels deeply enough to afford laughter may be more wise than all the politicians and journalists.” —Time
“The power and majesty of Chinua Achebe’s work has, literally, opened the world to generations of readers. He is an ambassador of art, and a profound recorder of the human condition.” —Michael Dorris
From the Publisher
Set in the Ibo heartland of eastern Nigeria, one of Africa's best-known writers describes the conflict between old and new in its most poignant aspect: the personal struggle between father and son.
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