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Staff Picks: Sandy's picks
Come check out what we're reading here in the LRC. We like to think we have good taste, so maybe you'll find something good here too!
Athens Burning by Robert GarlandBetween June 480 and August 479 BC, tens of thousands of Athenians evacuated, following King Xerxes' victory at the Battle of Thermopylae. Abandoning their homes and ancestral tombs in the wake of the invading Persian army, they sought refuge abroad. Women and children were sent to one safe haven, the elderly to another, while all men of military age were conscripted into the fleet. During this difficult year of exile, the city of Athens was set on fire not once, but twice. In Athens Burning, Robert Garland explores the reasons behind the decision to abandon Attica, the peninsular region of Greece that includes Athens, while analyzing the consequences, both material and psychological, of the resulting invasion. Garland introduces readers to the contextual background of the Greco-Persian wars, which include the famous Battle of Marathon. He describes the various stages of the invasion from both the Persian and Greek point of view and explores the siege of the Acropolis, the defeat of the Persians first by the allied Greek navy and later by the army, and, finally, the return of the Athenians to their land. Taking its inspiration from the sufferings of civilians, Athens Burning also works to dispel the image of the Persians as ruthless barbarians. Addressing questions that are largely ignored in other accounts of the conflict, including how the evacuation was organized and what kind of facilities were available to the refugees along the way, Garland demonstrates the relevance of ancient history to the contemporary world. This compelling story is especially resonant in a time when the news is filled with the suffering of nearly 5 million people driven by civil war from their homes in Syria. Aimed at students and scholars of ancient history, this highly accessible book will also fascinate anyone interested in the burgeoning fields of refugee and diaspora studies.
The Empire Must Die by Mikhail ZygarFrom Tolstoy to Lenin, from Diaghilev to Stalin, The Empire Must Die is a tragedy of operatic proportions with a cast of characters that ranges from the exotic to utterly villainous, the glamorous to the depraved. In 1912, Russia experienced a flowering of liberalism and tolerance that placed it at the forefront of the modern world: women were fighting for the right to vote in the elections for the newly empowered parliament, Russian art and culture was the envy of Europe and America, there was a vibrant free press and intellectual life. But a fatal flaw was left uncorrected: Russia's exuberant experimental moment took place atop a rotten foundation. The old imperial order, in place for three hundred years, still held the nation in thrall. Its princes, archdukes, and generals bled the country dry during the First World War and by 1917 the only consensus was that the Empire must die. Mikhail Zygar's dazzling, in-the-moment retelling of the two decades that prefigured the death of the Tsar, his family, and the entire imperial edifice is a captivating drama of what might have been versus what was subsequently seen as inevitable. A monumental piece of political theater that only Russia was capable of enacting, the fall of the Russian Empire changed the course of the twentieth century and eerily anticipated the mood of the twenty-first.
The Radium Girls by Kate MooreANew York Times, USA Today, andWall Street JournalBestseller! "the glowing ghosts of the radium girls haunt us still."--NPR Books The incredible true story of the women who fought America's Undark danger The Curies' newly discovered element of radium makes gleaming headlines across the nation as the fresh face of beauty, and wonder drug of the medical community. From body lotion to tonic water, the popular new element shines bright in the otherwise dark years of the First World War. Meanwhile, hundreds of girls toil amidst the glowing dust of the radium-dial factories. The glittering chemical covers their bodies from head to toe; they light up the night like industrious fireflies. With such a coveted job, these "shining girls" are the luckiest alive -- until they begin to fall mysteriously ill. But the factories that once offered golden opportunities are now ignoring all claims of the gruesome side effects, and the women's cries of corruption. And as the fatal poison of the radium takes hold, the brave shining girls find themselves embroiled in one of the biggest scandals of America's early 20th century, and in a groundbreaking battle for workers' rights that will echo for centuries to come. Written with a sparkling voice and breakneck pace, The Radium Girlsfully illuminates the inspiring young women exposed to the "wonder" substance of radium, and their awe-inspiring strength in the face of almost impossible circumstances. Their courage and tenacity led to life-changing regulations, research into nuclear bombing, and ultimately saved hundreds of thousands of lives...
Call Number: HD6067.2.U6 M66 2017
Publication Date: 2017-04-18
A Column of Fire by Ken Follett#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER "Absorbing . . . impossible to resist." --The Washington Post As Europe erupts, can one young spy protect his queen? International bestselling author Ken Follett takes us deep into the treacherous world of powerful monarchs, intrigue, murder, and treason with his magnificent new epic, A Column of Fire. In 1558, the ancient stones of Kingsbridge Cathedral look down on a city torn apart by religious conflict. As power in England shifts precariously between Catholics and Protestants, royalty and commoners clash, testing friendship, loyalty, and love. Ned Willard wants nothing more than to marry Margery Fitzgerald. But when the lovers find themselves on opposing sides of the religious conflict dividing the country, Ned goes to work for Princess Elizabeth. When she becomes queen, all Europe turns against England. The shrewd, determined young monarch sets up the country's first secret service to give her early warning of assassination plots, rebellions, and invasion plans. Over a turbulent half century, the love between Ned and Margery seems doomed as extremism sparks violence from Edinburgh to Geneva. Elizabeth clings to her throne and her principles, protected by a small, dedicated group of resourceful spies and courageous secret agents. The real enemies, then as now, are not the rival religions. The true battle pitches those who believe in tolerance and compromise against the tyrants who would impose their ideas on everyone else--no matter what the cost. Set during one of the most turbulent and revolutionary times in history, A Column of Fire is one of Follett's most exciting and ambitious works yet. It will delight longtime fans of the Kingsbridge series and is the perfect introduction for readers new to Ken Follett.
Call Number: PR6056.O45 C65 2017
Publication Date: 2017-09-12
Blood by Marjorie Liu; Sana Takeda (Artist)The Eisner-nominated MONSTRESS is back! Maika, Kippa,and Ren journey to Thyria in search of answers to her past... and discover anew, terrible, threat. Collects MONSTRESS #7-12
Call Number: GRAPH PN6728.M65483 L48 2017 v.2
Publication Date: 2017-07-11
Preludes and Nocturnes by Sam Kieth (Artist); Mike Dringenberg (Artist); NEil Gaiman; Dave McKean (Cover Design by)New York Times best-selling author Neil Gaiman's transcendent series SANDMAN is often hailed as the definitive Vertigo title and one of the finest achievements in graphic storytelling. Gaiman created an unforgettable tale of the forces that exist beyond life and death by weaving ancient mythology, folklore and fairy tales with his own distinct narrative vision. In PRELUDES & NOCTURNES, an occultist attempting to capture Death to bargain for eternal life traps her younger brother Dream instead. After his 70 year imprisonment and eventual escape, Dream, also known as Morpheus, goes on a quest for his lost objects of power. On his arduous journey Morpheus encounters Lucifer, John Constantine, and an all-powerful madman. This book also includes the story "The Sound of Her Wings," which introduces us to the pragmatic and perky goth girl Death. Includes issues 1-8 of the original series with completely new coloring, approved by the author.
Call Number: GRAPH PN6728.S26 G45 2010 v.1
Publication Date: 2010-10-19
Wonder Woman: the Rebirth Deluxe Edition Book 1 (Rebirth) by Greg Rucka; Liam Sharp (Illustrator)An incredible collection that marks the long-awaited return of legendary WONDER WOMAN writer Greg Rucka, featuring stunning art from Nicola Scott (EARTH 2) and Liam Sharp (GEARS OF WAR)--WONDER WOMAN: THE REBIRTH DELUXE EDITION BOOK 1 collects stories from one of the breakout hits of DC Rebirth. This series is a perfect jumping-on point into the world of Wonder Woman and the first hardcover collection of the new Rebirth series! She is one of the greatest heroes the world has ever known--an icon of equality, a symbol of power, a tireless champion of peace and justice. But who is Wonder Woman really? She's about to find out. Themyscira, the island paradise she left behind to defend Earth from the war god Ares, has vanished, and the magical power of her Lasso of Truth has disappeared along with it. In a sprawling saga that bridges her first year as a hero with the present day, the Amazon Princess must team up with her greatest enemy--the brutal beast-woman Cheetah--to find her vanished homeland and seek the truth about her origins. Can this unlikely alliance save her sisters and the world? Or will Wonder Woman's quest for answers lead to even deeper, darker and deadlier places? Find out in WONDER WOMAN: REBIRTH DELUXE EDITION BOOK 1! This volume contains the first two paperback collections of the landmark series and includes WONDER WOMAN #1-14 and WONDER WOMAN: REBIRTH #1.
Call Number: GRAPH PN6728.W6 R837 2017 v.1
Publication Date: 2017-10-10
Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Presents a Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo by Jill Twist; Marlon Bundo; E. G. Keller (Illustrator)100% of Last Week Tonight's proceeds will be donated to The Trevor Project and AIDS United. HBO's Emmy-winning Last Week Tonight with John Oliver presents a children's picture book about a Very Special boy bunny who falls in love with another boy bunny. Meet Marlon Bundo, a lonely bunny who lives with his Grampa, Mike Pence - the Vice President of the United States. But on this Very Special Day, Marlon's life is about to change forever... With its message of tolerance and advocacy, this charming children's book explores issues of same sex marriage and democracy. Sweet, funny, and beautifully illustrated, this book is dedicated to every bunny who has ever felt different.
Call Number: JUV FIC BundM day
Publication Date: 2018-03-18
Norse Mythology by Neil GaimanNeil Gaiman has long been inspired by ancient mythology in creating the fantastical realms of his fiction. Now he turns his attention back to the source, presenting a bravura rendition of the great northern tales. In Norse Mythology, Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki—son of a giant—blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassable manipulator. Gaiman fashions these primeval stories into a novelistic arc that begins with the genesis of the legendary nine worlds and delves into the exploits of deities, dwarfs, and giants. Once, when Thor’s hammer is stolen, Thor must disguise himself as a woman—difficult with his beard and huge appetite—to steal it back. More poignant is the tale in which the blood of Kvasir—the most sagacious of gods—is turned into a mead that infuses drinkers with poetry. The work culminates in Ragnarok, the twilight of the gods and rebirth of a new time and people. Through Gaiman’s deft and witty prose emerge these gods with their fiercely competitive natures, their susceptibility to being duped and to duping others, and their tendency to let passion ignite their actions, making these long-ago myths breathe pungent life again.
Call Number: BL860 .G35 2017
Publication Date: 2017-02-07
Churchill and Orwell by Thomas E. RicksThe New York Times Bestseller. A dual biography of Winston Churchill and George Orwell, who preserved democracy from the threats of authoritarianism, from the left and right alike. Both George Orwell and Winston Churchill came close to death in the mid-1930's--Orwell shot in the neck in a trench line in the Spanish Civil War, and Churchill struck by a car in New York City. If they'd died then, history would scarcely remember them. At the time, Churchill was a politician on the outs, his loyalty to his class and party suspect. Orwell was a mildly successful novelist, to put it generously. No one would have predicted that by the end of the 20th century they would be considered two of the most important people in British history for having the vision and courage to campaign tirelessly, in words and in deeds, against the totalitarian threat from both the left and the right. In a crucial moment, they responded first by seeking the facts of the matter, seeing through the lies and obfuscations, and then they acted on their beliefs. Together, to an extent not sufficiently appreciated, they kept the West's compass set toward freedom as its due north. It's not easy to recall now how lonely a position both men once occupied. By the late 1930's, democracy was discredited in many circles, and authoritarian rulers were everywhere in the ascent. There were some who decried the scourge of communism, but saw in Hitler and Mussolini "men we could do business with," if not in fact saviors. And there were others who saw the Nazi and fascist threat as malign, but tended to view communism as the path to salvation. Churchill and Orwell, on the other hand, had the foresight to see clearly that the issue was human freedom--that whatever its coloration, a government that denied its people basic freedoms was a totalitarian menace and had to be resisted. In the end, Churchill and Orwell proved their age's necessary men. The glorious climax of Churchill and Orwell is the work they both did in the decade of the 1940's to triumph over freedom's enemies. And though Churchill played the larger role in the defeat of Hitler and the Axis, Orwell's reckoning with the menace of authoritarian rule in Animal Farm and 1984 would define the stakes of the Cold War for its 50-year course, and continues to give inspiration to fighters for freedom to this day. Taken together, in Thomas E. Ricks's masterful hands, their lives are a beautiful testament to the power of moral conviction, and to the courage it can take to stay true to it, through thick and thin.
Call Number: DA566.9.C5 R542 2017
Publication Date: 2017-05-23
World Without End by Ken Follett#1 New York Times Bestseller In 1989, Ken Follett astonished the literary world with The Pillars of the Earth, a sweeping epic novel set in twelfth-century England centered on the building of a cathedral and many of the hundreds of lives it affected. Critics were overwhelmed--"it will hold you, fascinate you, surround you" (Chicago Tribune)--and readers everywhere hoped for a sequel. World Without End takes place in the same town of Kingsbridge, two centuries after the townspeople finished building the exquisite Gothic cathedral that was at the heart of The Pillars of the Earth. The cathedral and the priory are again at the center of a web of love and hate, greed and pride, ambition and revenge, but this sequel stands on its own. This time the men and women of an extraordinary cast of characters find themselves at a crossroad of new ideas--about medicine, commerce, architecture, and justice. In a world where proponents of the old ways fiercely battle those with progressive minds, the intrigue and tension quickly reach a boiling point against the devastating backdrop of the greatest natural disaster ever to strike the human race--the Black Death. Three years in the writing and nearly eighteen years since its predecessor, World Without End breathes new life into the epic historical novel and once again shows that Ken Follett is a masterful author writing at the top of his craft.
Call Number: PR6056.O45 W67 2008
Publication Date: 2008-10-07
The Obelisk Gate by N. K. Jemisin"Intricate and extraordinary." - New York Times on The Fifth Season Continuing the trilogy that began with the award-winning The Fifth Season Winner of the Hugo Award Shortlisted for the Nebula, Audie, and Locus Awards The inaugural Wired.com book club book New York Times Notable Book of 2015 This is the way the world ends, for the last time. The season of endings grows darker, as civilization fades into the long cold night. Essun -- once Damaya, once Syenite, now avenger -- has found shelter, but not her daughter. Instead there is Alabaster Tenring, destroyer of the world, with a request. But if Essun does what he asks, it would seal the fate of the Stillness forever. Far away, her daughter Nassun is growing in power - and her choices will break the world. For more from N. K. Jemisin, check out: The Inheritance Trilogy The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms The Broken Kingdoms The Kingdom of Gods The Inheritance Trilogy (omnibus edition) Shades in Shadow: An Inheritance Triptych (e-only short fiction) The Awakened Kingdom (e-only novella) Dreamblood Duology The Killing Moon The Shadowed Sun The Broken Earth The Fifth Season The Obelisk Gate The Stone Sky
Call Number: PS3610.E46 O24 2016
Publication Date: 2016-08-16
Astrophysics for People in a Hurry by Neil deGrasse TysonWhat is the nature of space and time? How do we fit within the universe? How does the universe fit within us? There's no better guide through these mind-expanding questions than acclaimed astrophysicist and best-selling author Neil deGrasse Tyson.But today, few of us have time to contemplate the cosmos. So Tyson brings the universe down to Earth succinctly and clearly, with sparkling wit, in tasty chapters consumable anytime and anywhere in your busy day.While you wait for your morning coffee to brew, for the bus, the train, or a plane to arrive, Astrophysics for People in a Hurry will reveal just what you need to be fluent and ready for the next cosmic headlines: from the Big Bang to black holes, from quarks to quantum mechanics, and from the search for planets to the search for life in the universe.
Call Number: QB461 .T97 2017
Publication Date: 2017-05-02
Forgotten Heritage by Jonglez Publishing; Matthew EmmettRediscovering our forgotten heritage No Entry'; 'Dangerous Site Keep Out; Trespassers Will Be Prosecuted': common sights on walls or perimeter fences around many of the world's abandoned sites. These warnings allude to potential dangers and prove an ineffective deterrent against thieves and vandals. To the urban explorer/photographer these signs simply serve to whet the appetite for the promise of hidden wonders that may lie beyond. For those who ignore the warnings and climb the fences, what awaits is usually worth the risks. Vast industrial spaces that feel more like an alien landscape or poignant residential settings, which are slowly surrendering to the inexorable advance of nature. Places once alive with sound and movement, now silent and still, but no less sensory. Immense and powerful beauty resides in these forgotten places. For some, just getting inside a location to experience this alternative form of sightseeing is enough to satisfy a desire to simply go where one shouldn't. But for some there is a need to capture the essence of a location in words and pictures, giving others a metaphorical leg-up over the fences, to walk them through the remaining ruins. Matt Emmett falls into the latter of these groups, travelling regularly to places in the UK and across Europe. He seeks out vast power stations and their cooling towers, steel works, mines, bunkers, tunnels, schools, engine sheds, hotels, castles and a myriad of other buildings. All have their own stories to tell in a variety of voices and without the distraction, sounds and people who inhabited them, those stories are clear and strong and the character of each location is laid bare. Architectural Digest: "Photographer Matt Emmett has made a name for himself by pushing the boundaries to capture epic imagery of Europe s most forgotten ruins." International Business Times: "Matt Emmett's 'Forgotten Heritage' photography project uncovers the brutal beauty of abandoned buildings and derelict industry."
Call Number: TR656.5 .E464 F674 2016
Publication Date: 2016-12-07
Monstress by Marjorie Liu; Sana Takeda (Artist, Cover Design by)Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900's Asia, in arichly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells thestory of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and whoshares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, aconnection that will transform them both and make them the target of both humanand otherworldly powers. About theCreators: New York Times bestselling andaward-winning writer Marjorie Liu is best known for her fiction and comic books.She teaches comic book writing at MIT, and leads a class on Popular Fiction atthe Voices of Our Nation (VONA) workshop. Ms. Liu's extensive work includes thebestselling "Astonishing X-Men" for Marvel Comics, which featured the gaywedding of X-Man Northstar and was subsequently nominated for a GLAAD MediaAward for outstanding media images of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendercommunity. Prior to writing full-time, Liu was a lawyer. She currently residesin Boston. Sana Takeda is an illustrator andcomic book artist who was born in Niigata, and now resides in Tokyo, Japan. Atage 20 she started out as a 3D CGI designer for SEGA, a Japanese video gamecompany, and became a freelance artist when she was 25. She is still an artist,and has worked on titles such as "X-23" and "Ms. Marvel" for Marvel Comics, andis an illustrator for trading card games in Japan.
Call Number: GRAPH PN6728.M6548 L48 2016 v.1
Publication Date: 2016-07-19
Python for Kids by Jason R. BriggsFor Kids Aged 10+ (And Their Parents) The code in this book runs on almost anything: Windows, Mac, Linux, even an OLPC laptop or Raspberry Pi! Python is a powerful, expressive programming language that's easy to learn and fun to use! But books about learning to program in Python can be kind of dull, gray, and boring, and that's no fun for anyone. Python for Kids brings Python to life and brings you (and your parents) into the world of programming. The ever-patient Jason R. Briggs will guide you through the basics as you experiment with unique (and often hilarious) example programs that feature ravenous monsters, secret agents, thieving ravens, and more. New terms are defined; code is colored, dissected, and explained; and quirky, full-color illustrations keep things on the lighter side. Chapters end with programming puzzles designed to stretch your brain and strengthen your understanding. By the end of the book you'll have programmed two complete games: a clone of the famous Pong and "Mr. Stick Man Races for the Exit"—a platform game with jumps, animation, and much more. As you strike out on your programming adventure, you'll learn how to: Use fundamental data structures like lists, tuples, and maps Organize and reuse your code with functions and modules Use control structures like loops and conditional statements Draw shapes and patterns with Python's turtle module Create games, animations, and other graphical wonders with tkinter Why should serious adults have all the fun? Python for Kids is your ticket into the amazing world of computer programming.
Call Number: JUV 005.13 BrigJ
Publication Date: 2012-12-22
The Honest Truth by Dan GemeinhartThis extraordinary debut from teacher-librarian and phenomenal new middle-grade talent Dan Gemeinhart raises big questions and offers no easy answers. In all the ways that matter, Mark is a normal kid. He's got a dog named Beau and a best friend, Jessie. He likes to take photos and write haiku poems in his notebook. He dreams of climbing a mountain one day. But in one important way, Mark is not like other kids at all. Mark is sick. The kind of sick that means hospitals. And treatments. The kind of sick some people never get better from. So Mark runs away. He leaves home with his camera, his notebook, his dog, and a plan to reach the top of Mount Rainier -- even if it's the last thing he ever does. The Honest Truth is a rare and extraordinary novel about big questions, small moments, and the incredible journey of the human spirit.