Venice, 1945. The war may be waning, but the city known as La Serenissima is still occupied and the people of Italy fear the power of the Third Reich. One night, under a canopy of stars, a fisherman named Cenzo comes across a young woman’s body floating in the lagoon and soon discovers that she is still alive and in trouble. Born to a wealthy Jewish family, Giulia is on the run from the Wehrmacht SS. Cenzo chooses to protect Giulia rather than hand her over to the Nazis. This act of kindness leads them into the world of Partisans, random executions, the arts of forgery and high explosives, Mussolini’s broken promises, the black market and gold, and, everywhere, the enigmatic maze of the Venice Lagoon.
Nell is 26 and has never been to Paris. She’s never even been on a romantic weekend away --- to anywhere --- before. Everyone knows travelling abroad isn’t really her thing. But when Nell’s boyfriend fails to show up for their romantic mini-vacation, she has the opportunity to prove everyone --- including herself --- wrong. Alone and in Paris, Nell uncovers a version of herself she never knew existed: independent and intrepid.
Someone in East Long Beach has taken it upon himself to help solve the cases the LAPD can't or won't touch. They call him IQ. He's a loner and a high school dropout, his unassuming nature disguising a relentless determination and a fierce intelligence. He charges his clients whatever they can afford, which might be a set of tires or a homemade casserole. To get by, he's forced to take on clients who can pay. This time, it's a rap mogul whose life is in danger. As Isaiah investigates, he encounters a vengeful ex-wife, a crew of notorious cutthroats, a monstrous attack dog, and a hit man who even other hit men say is a lunatic.
THE RAIN IN PORTUGAL --- a title that admits he’s not much of a rhymer --- sheds Billy Collins’s ironic light on such subjects as travel and art, cats and dogs, loneliness and love, beauty and death. His tones range from the whimsical --- “the dogs of Minneapolis… / have no idea they’re in Minneapolis” --- to the elegiac in a reaction to the death of Seamus Heaney. A student of the everyday, here Collins contemplates a weather vane, a still life painting, the calendar, and a child lost at a beach. His imaginative fabrications have Shakespeare flying comfortably in first class and Keith Richards supporting the globe on his head.
First published in 1897, DRACULA has had a long and multifaceted afterlife --- one rivaling even its immortal creation --- yet Bram Stoker has remained a hovering specter in this pervasive mythology. In SOMETHING IN THE BLOOD, David J. Skal exhumes the inner world and strange genius of the writer who birthed an undying cultural icon, painting an astonishing portrait of the age in which Stoker was born --- a time when death was no metaphor but a constant threat easily imagined as a character existing in flesh and blood.
In the summer of 1994, when Molly Brodak was 13 years old, her father robbed 11 banks, until the police finally caught up with him while he was sitting at a bar drinking beer, a bag of stolen money plainly visible in the backseat of his parked car. Dubbed the “Mario Brothers Bandit” by the FBI, he served seven years in prison and was released, only to rob another bank several years later and end up back behind bars. In her debut memoir, BANDIT, Molly Brodak recounts her childhood and attempts to make sense of her complicated relationship with her father, a man she only half knew.
CRIME PLUS MUSIC collects 20 darkly intense, music-related noir stories by world-renowned mystery authors Brendan DuBois, Alison Gaylin, Craig Johnson, David Liss, Val McDermid, Gary Phillips, Peter Robinson, and, from the music world, Galadrielle Allman, author of PLEASE BE WITH ME: A Song for My Father, Duane Allman and award-winning songwriter-novelist Willy Vlautin. Edited by novelist and Wall Street Journal rock and pop music critic Jim Fusilli, CRIME PLUS MUSIC exposes the nasty side of the world of popular music, revealing it to be the perfect setting for noir.
Okey Ndibe’s memoir tells of his move from Nigeria to America, where he came to edit the influential --- but forever teetering on the verge of insolvency --- African Commentary magazine. It recounts stories of Ndibe’s relationships with Chinua Achebe, Wole Soyinka and other literary figures; examines the differences between Nigerian and American etiquette and politics; recalls an incident of racial profiling just 13 days after he arrived in the US, in which he was mistaken for a bank robber; considers American stereotypes about Africa (and vice-versa); and juxtaposes African folk tales with Wall Street trickery.
Ned Ayres, the son of a judge in mid-century America, has never wanted anything but a newspaper career. The defining moment comes early, when Ned is city editor of his hometown paper. One of his beat reporters fields a tip: William Grant, the town haberdasher, once served six years in Joliet. The story runs, and Ned offers no resistance to his publisher's argument that the public has a right to know. The consequences haunt him throughout a long career, as he moves first to Chicago, where he engages in a spirited love affair that cannot compete with the pull of the newsroom and the “subtle beauty” of the front page.
The five centuries between the end of Roman Britain and the death of Alfred the Great have left few voices save a handful of chroniclers, but Britain's "Dark Ages" can still be explored through their material remnants: architecture, books, metalwork and, above all, landscapes. Max Adams explores Britain's lost early medieval past by walking its paths and exploring its lasting imprint on valley, hill and field. Each of his 10 walking narratives form free-standing chapters as well as parts of a wider portrait of a Britain of fort and fyrd, crypt and crannog, church and causeway, holy well and memorial stone.