This deceptively simple tale relates the activities of seven English children played by adults on a summer afternoon during World War II. In a woods, a field and a barn, they play, fight, fantasize and swagger. Their aggressions, fears, hostilities and rivalries are a microcosm of adult interaction. Easy going Willie tags along as burly Peter bullies Raymond and is challenged by fair minded Paul. Plain Audrey is overshadowed by Angela’s prettiness and wreaks her anger on the boys. All of them gang up on the terrified “Donald Duck” who, abused by his mother and ridiculed by his peers, plays a dangerous game of pyromania with tragic results.
In this fascinating book, New Yorker business columnist James Surowiecki explores a deceptively simple idea: Large groups of people are smarter than an elite few, no matter how brilliant–better at solving problems, fostering innovation, coming to wise decisions, even predicting the future.
With boundless erudition and in delightfully clear prose, Surowiecki ranges across fields as diverse as popular culture, psychology, ant biology, behavioral economics, artificial intelligence, military history, and politics to show how this simple idea offers important lessons for how we live our lives, select our leaders, run our companies, and think about our world.
The Innocent is another action-packed thriller from David Baldacci, one of the world’s most popular writers.
HE COULD NO LONGER REMEMBER THE NAMES OF ALL THE PEOPLE WHOSE LIVES HE HAD ENDED.
Master assassin Will Robie is the man the US government call to eliminate their most ruthless enemies at home or abroad. He never questions his orders, and he never misses his mark.
He’s just returned from a covert assignment in Edinburgh to neutralize a growing threat, having drawn upon all his expertise to complete his mission and disappear without a trace. The odds were stacked against him, but that’s never made a difference before.
But now he’s facing the most difficult operation of his career. Dispatched to kill a US government employee, he does the unthinkable when things don’t add up – he refuses to pull the trigger. In doing so, Robie finds himself becoming the target. On the run from his own government and with everything on the line, does he need to change sides to save lives – including his own?
The Innocent is the first novel in David Baldacci’s blockbuster Will Robie series.
Regina’s Calcaterra memoir, Etched in Sand, is an inspiring and triumphant coming-of-age story of tenacity and hope.
Regina Calcaterra is a successful lawyer, New York State official, and activist. Her painful early life, however, was quite different. Regina and her four siblings survived an abusive and painful childhood only to find themselves faced with the challenges of the foster-care system and intermittent homelessness in the shadows of Manhattan and the Hamptons.
A true-life rags-to-riches story, Etched in Sand chronicles Regina’s rising above her past, while fighting to keep her brother and three sisters together through it all.
Beautifully written, with heartbreaking honesty, Etched in Sand is an unforgettable reminder that regardless of social status, the American Dream is still within reach for those who have the desire and the determination to succeed.
This extraordinary magnum opus seems at first to be a confessional autobiographical novel in the grand manner, claiming and extending the legacy of Proust and Mann. But it is more: Peter Nadas has given us a superb contemporary psychological novel that comes to terms with the ghosts, corpses, and repressed nightmares of Europe’s recent past. “A Book of Memories” is made up of three first-person narratives: the first that of a young Hungarian writer and his fated love for a German poet; we also learn of the narrator’s adolescence in Budapest, when he experiences the downfall of his once-upper-class but now pro-Communist family and of his beloved but repudiated father, a state prosecutor who commits suicide after the 1956 uprising. A second memoir, alternating with the first, is a novel the narrator is composing about a refined Belle Epoque aesthete, whose anti-bourgeois transgressions seem like emotionally overcharged versions of the narrator’s own experiences. A third voice is that of a childhood friend who, after the narrator’s return to his homeland, offers an apparently more objective account of their friendship. Together these brilliantly colored lives are integrated in a powerful work of tragic intensity.