Narrated by Michael Kramer
In 1810, John Jacob Astor sent out two advance parties to settle the wild, unclaimed western coast of North America. More than half of his men died violent deaths. The others survived starvation, madness, and greed to shape the destiny of a continent.
At a time when the edge of American settlement barely reached beyond the Appalachian Mountains, two visionaries, President Thomas Jefferson and millionaire John Jacob Astor, foresaw that one day the Pacific would dominate world trade as much as the Atlantic did in their day. Just two years after the Lewis and Clark expedition concluded in 1806, Jefferson and Astor turned their sights westward once again. Thus began one of history's dramatic but largely forgotten turning points in the conquest of the North American continent.
Astoria is the harrowing tale of the quest to settle a Jamestown-like colony on the Pacific coast. Astor set out to establish a global trade network based at the mouth of the Columbia River in what is now Oregon, while Jefferson envisioned a separate democracy on the western coast that would spread eastward to meet the young United States.
Astor backed this ambitious enterprise with the vast for-tune he'd made in the fur trade and in New York real estate since arriving in the United States as a near-penniless immigrant soon after the Revolutionary War. He dispatched two groups of men west: one by sea around the southern tip of South America and one by land over the Rockies. The Overland Party, led by the gentlemanly American businessman Wilson Price Hunt, combined French-Canadian voyageurs, Scottish fur traders, American woodsmen, and an extraordinary Native American woman with two toddlers. The Seagoing Party, sailing aboard the ship Tonquin, likewise was a volatile microcosm of contemporary North America. Under the bitter eye of Captain Jonathan Thorn, a young U.S. naval hero whose unyielding, belligerent nature was better suited to battle than to negotiating cultural differences, the Tonquin made tumultuous progress toward its violent end.
Unfolding from 1810 to 1813, Astoria is a tale of high adventure and incredible hardship, drawing extensively on firsthand accounts of those who made the journey. Though the colony itself would be short-lived, its founders opened provincial American eyes to the remarkable potential of the western coast, discovered the route that became the Oregon Trail, and permanently altered the nation's landscape and global standing.
Joe Torre is the most successful–and most respected–baseball manager of the modern era, steering the Yankees to six American League pennants and four World Series championships. When he left the team in 2007, it was front-page news around the country. Famously diplomatic during his tenure with the Yankees, Torre finally speaks out about what it was like building and managing the dynasty during those twelve glorious and tumultuous years. Written as a third-person narrative with Sports Illustrated Senior Baseball Writer Tom Verducci, THE YANKEE YEARS is a thoughtful, utterly honest, and gripping behind-the-scenes look at the Yankees organization from top to bottom.
From the Compact Disc edition.
A necessary and unprecedented account of America's changing relationship with Israel
When it comes to Israel, U.S. policy has always emphasized the unbreakable bond between the two countries and our ironclad commitment to Israel's security. Today our ties to Israel are close—so close that when there are differences, they tend to make the news. But it was not always this way.
Dennis Ross has been a direct participant in shaping U.S. policy toward the Middle East, and Israel specifically, for nearly thirty years. He served in senior roles, including as Bill Clinton's envoy for Arab-Israeli peace, and was an active player in the debates over how Israel fit into the region and what should guide our policies. In Doomed to Succeed, he takes us through every administration from Truman to Obama, throwing into dramatic relief each president's attitudes toward Israel and the region, the often tumultuous debates between key advisers, and the events that drove the policies and at times led to a shift in approach.
Ross points out how rarely lessons were learned and how distancing the United States from Israel in the Eisenhower, Nixon, Bush, and Obama administrations never yielded any benefits and why that lesson has never been learned. Doomed to Succeed offers compelling advice for how to understand the priorities of Arab leaders and how future administrations might best shape U.S. policy in that light.
Still an active correspondent, Tucker crisscrossed the continent, filing stories about the uprisings in the Congo, the civil war in Sierra Leone, and the postgenocidal conflict in Rwanda. He witnessed heartbreaking scenes of devastation and violence, steeling him further to take a personal role in helping anywhere he could. At home in Harare, Vita was nursing Chipo back to health. Soon she and Tucker decided to alter their lives forever—they would adopt Chipo. That decision challenged an unspoken social norm—that foreigners should never adopt Zimbabwean children.
Raised in rural Mississippi in the sixties and seventies, Tucker was familiar with the mores associated with and dictated by race. His wife, a savvy black woman whose father escaped the Jim Crow South for a new life in the industrial North, would not be deterred in her resolve to welcome Chipo into their loving family.
As if their situation wasn’t tenuous enough, Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe was stirring up national fervor against foreigners, especially journalists, abroad and at home. At its peak, his antagonizing branded all foreign journalists personae non grata. For Tucker, the only full-time American correspondent in Zimbabwe, the declaration was a direct threat to his life and his wife’s safety, and an ultimatum to their decision to adopt the child who had already become their only daughter.
Against a background of war, terrorism, disease, and unbearable uncertainty about the future, Chipo’s story emerges as an inspiring testament to the miracles that love—and dogged determination—can sometimes achieve. Gripping, heartbreaking, and triumphant, this family memoir will resonate throughout the ages.
From the Hardcover edition.
From the Compact Disc edition.
Economist Ian Ayres has spent the better part of his career examining the power in numbers. Decisions used to be made by traditional experts based on experience, intuition, and trial and error. Nowadays, cutting-edge organizations are crunching ever-larger databases to find answers. Today’s super crunchers are providing greater insights into human behavior than ever before–and predicting the future with staggeringly accurate results.
In this lively and groundbreaking audiobook, Ayres takes us behind the scenes into the bold new world of today’s super crunchers. The author sweeps over a dazzling array of topics with strange-but-true facts, wry wit, and a raconteur’s talent for the fascinating anecdote. Entertaining, enlightening, and absolutely essential, Super Crunchers is an audiobook that no businessperson, consumer, or student–statistically, that’s everyone!–should make another decision without first listening to. Thinking-by-numbers is the new way to be smart.
From the Compact Disc edition.
Franklin Lopez and his brother, Jackson, are only days away from the ocean when Franklin, nearly crippled by an inflamed knee, is forced to stop. In the woods near his temporary refuge, Franklin comes upon an isolated stone building. Inside he finds Margaret, a woman with a deadly infection and confined to the Pesthouse to sweat out her fever. Tentatively, the two join forces and make their way through the ruins of old America. Confronted by bandits rounding up men for slavery, finding refuge in the Ark, a religious community that makes bizarre demands on those they shelter, Franklin and Margaret find their wariness of each other replaced by deep trust and an intimacy neither one has ever experienced before.
THE PESTHOUSE is Jim Crace’s most compelling novel to date. Rich in its understanding of America’s history and ethos, it is a paean to the human spirit.
From the Compact Disc edition.
In Chicago, a pregnant cafeteria worker suffering nothing more malevolent than flulike symptoms begins hemorrhaging from every part of her body. In Boston, a brilliant musician, her face disfigured by an unknown disease, rapidly descends into a lethal paranoia. In Belinda, West Virginia, a miner suddenly goes berserk, causing a cave-in that kills two of his co-workers. Finding the link between these events could prove FATAL.
Five years ago, internist and emergency specialist Matt Rutledge returned to his West Virginia home to marry his high-school sweetheart and open a practice. He also had a score to settle. His father died while working for the Belinda Coal and Coke Company, and Matt swore to expose the mine’s health and safety violations.
When his beloved Ginny succumbed to an unusual cancer, his campaign became even more bitterly personal. Now Matt has identified two bizarre cases of what he has dubbed the Belinda Syndrome--caused, he is certain, by the mine’s careless disposal of toxic chemicals. All he needs is proof.
Meanwhile, two women, unknown to one another, are drawn inexorably to Belinda, into Matt’s life--and into mortal danger. Massachusetts coroner Nikki Solari comes to attend the funeral of her roommate, killed violently on a Boston street. Ellen Kroft, a retired schoolteacher from Maryland, seeks the remorseless killer who has threatened to destroy her and her family.Three strangers--Rutledge, Solari, and Kroft--each hold one piece of a puzzle they must solve, and solve quickly. If they don’t, it will be far more than just their own lives that are at risk.
Michael Palmer has crafted a novel of breathtaking speed and medical intricacy where nothing is as it seems and one false step could be FATAL.
From the Hardcover edition.
Feared by some of the most powerful men in the world, Faith has been targeted to die. But when a private investigator walks into the middle of the assassination attempt, the shooting suddenly goes wrong, and an FBI agent is killed. Now Faith Lockhart must flee for her life - with her story, her deadly secret, and an unknown man she's forced to trust...
"Jakes combines encyclopedic command of historical fact with unmatched storytelling. Carefully researched and filled with colorful characters who move in an authentic Washington atmosphere."—Booklist
From the Compact Disc edition.
Successful movie producer Wolf Willett is stunned when he sees his own death reported in a major newspaper. It says he was a victim in a triple homicide during a sordid tryst with his wife and a friend. But who is the unidentified corpse? Why can’t Wolf remember anything about the night in question? And who wants him dead?
Wolf had the means and motive—and his inexplicable memory loss seems far too suspicious to suit Sante Fe’s crusading D.A., who promptly has Wolf arrested. And when another murder complicates the scenario, he turns to hot-shot criminal attorney Ed Eagle to help clear his name—and stop a killer who’s determined to finish the job.
In this gritty, gripping firecracker of a novel, the author of the bestselling Grant County, Georgia, series breaks thrilling new ground, weaving together the threads of a complex, multilayered story with the skill of a master craftsman. Packed with body-bending switchbacks, searing psychological suspense and human emotions, Triptych ratchets up the tension one revelation at a time as it races to a shattering and unforgettable climax.
"Funny and clever.... A kind of ad-world version of Dr. Strangelove.... [Barry] unleashes enough wit and surprise to make his story a total blast." --The New York Times Book Review
"Wicked and wonderful.... [It] does just about everything right.... Fast-moving, funny, involving." --The Washington Post Book World
Taxation has been abolished, the government has been privatized, and employees take the surname of the company they work for. It's a brave new corporate world, but you don't want to be caught without a platinum credit card--as lowly Merchandising Officer Hack Nike is about to find out. Trapped into building street cred for a new line of $2500 sneakers by shooting customers, Hack attracts the barcode-tattooed eye of the legendary Jennifer Government. A stressed-out single mom, corporate watchdog, and government agent who has to rustle up funding before she's allowed to fight crime, Jennifer Government is holding a closing down sale--and everything must go.
#1 New York Times bestselling author Sidney Sheldon's most popular and enduring heroine—Tracy Whitney of If Tomorrow Comes—returns in a sensational sequel full of passion, suspense, and breathtaking twists
Once upon a time, Tracy Whitney made the people who destroyed her family account for their sins. Now someone is looking for payback . . .
racy Whitney never thought she wanted to settle down. With her suave and handsome partner, Jeff Stevens, she'd been responsible for some of the world's most astounding heists, relishing the danger and intensity of life on the wild side. Together, she and Jeff have made enough money for several lifetimes conning the rich, corrupt, and greedy out of their ill-gotten fortunes. But there is still one thing missing from Tracy's perfect life: a baby.
At first, "going straight" feels like a new adventure. Tracy makes plans for a family, while Jeff indulges his passion for antiquities working at the British Museum. But as the months pass and Tracy's longed-for pregnancy doesn't happen, she finds herself yearning for the adrenaline rush of the old days. When a mysterious and beautiful stranger enters their lives, Tracy and Jeff's once unbreakable partnership is suddenly blown wide open. Jeff wakes one morning to find Tracy gone, vanished without a trace.
For more than a decade, a broken Jeff struggles to carry on knowing Tracy is out there somewhere. But the rest of the world believes Tracy Whitney is dead . . . until a series of murders leads a tenacious French detective to her doorstep. Eleven victims, in ten different cities, over nine years—all bearing the hallmarks of the same killer. Madrid, Lima, London, Chicago, Buenos Aires, Hong Kong, New York, Mumbai . . . all the cities where Tracy pulled off some of her most brilliant capers. Someone is targeting her, manipulating a series of disturbing events and raising terrifying ghosts she thought were dead and buried. Once again, this clever woman finds herself out on the edge, playing the odds in a desperate game of roulette. But this time she's got everything to lose—including the man she cannot forget.
Jeff Stevens saved Tracy's life once. Now it's her chance to return the favor. To stop a devious enemy hidden in the shadows, she will need to dig deeper than she's ever gone before, to put her trust in some unlikely allies, and to find the strength and courage to defeat her rivals and protect everything she loves.
Tomorrow has come at last. But it isn't the future Tracy bargained for. . . .
Claude Malloche is a master assassin, more rumor than man, for whom murder is an art. No one can identity his face. Now Malloche has a deadly brain tumor, and he intends to have the best neurosurgeon in the world operate on it.
To ensure Jessie's cooperation, Malloche has devised a plan of intimidation that puts at risk her life and the lives of hundreds of innocent people. Neurosurgery requires nerves of steel, but in coming up with a scheme to fulfill her oath as a doctor while thwarting a diabolical killer, Jessie will be performing the most complex surgery of her career- on a knife-edge of terror.
From the Compact Disc edition.
Russia's new ballistic missile submarine, Yuriy Dolgorukiy, is being deployed on its first patrol while America's newest fast attack submarine, North Dakota, is assigned to trail it and collect intel. As the Russian submarine heads under the polar ice cap, its sonar readings reveal the trailing American sub and cause the Russians to begin a radical, evasive maneuver. This, however, fails and the submarines collide, resulting in damage that sends both to the bottom.
The Americans immediately set up a rescue mission, sending a new submarine and a SEAL team to establish an ice camp---Ice Station Nautilus---and stage a rescue. The Russians also send men and material, ostensibly to rescue their own men, but the Russian Special Forces team is also there to take the American base camp and the American sub, leaving no survivors or traces of their actions. As the men in North Dakota struggle to survive, the SEAL team battles for possession of the submarine.
Rick Campbell's Ice Station Nautilus is an epic battle above and below the ice, Special Forces against SEALs, submarine against submarine, with survival on the line.
Ballard and his considerably younger lover Sandrine have been brought together by a shared erotic obsession of the darkest kind. As they travel down a remote part of the Amazon River on a luxurious yacht, they spend their days indulging in their macabre pastime. Through a haze of pain and pleasure, the lovers are witness to a series of increasingly sinister portents, dreams and visions that haunt their claustrophobic and disturbing world. With Peter Straub’s signature, breathtaking twists and an astonishing climax, you’ll never forget The Ballad of Ballard and Sandrine.
When his black widow wife failed to take him out in her murder for hire plot, Ed Eagle figured he was in the clear. But now that Barbara has escaped from police custody, Ed knows that his life, the life of his new girlfriend and, of course, any rich man unlucky enough to be lured into Barbara’s web, is in extreme danger. To add to his troubles, Ed has taken on a new client, Don Wells, who may or may not have murdered his own wife and son.
From the posh resorts of southern California to the New Mexico desert and the seedy hotels of Tijuana, Ed Eagle will follow every lead—and hope that he doesn’t wind up Santa Fe dead.
In the life of every sports fan, there comes a moment of reckoning. It may happen when your team wins on a last-second field goal and you suddenly find yourself clenched in a loving embrace with a large hairy man you’ve never met. . . . Or in the long, hormonally depleted days after a loss, when you’re felled by a sensation similar to the one you first experienced following the death of a pet. At such moments the fan is forced to confront the question others—spouses, friends, children, and colleagues—have asked for years:
Why do I care?
What is it about sports that turns otherwise sane, rational people into raving lunatics? Why does winning compel people to tear down goalposts, and losing, to drown themselves in bad keg beer? In short, why do fans care?
In search of the answers to these questions, Warren St. John seeks out the roving community of RVers who follow the Alabama Crimson Tide from game to game across the South. A movable feast of Weber grills, Igloo coolers, and die-hard superstition, these are characters who arrive on Wednesday for Saturday’s game: Freeman and Betty Reese, who skipped their own daughter’s wedding because it coincided with a Bama game; Ray Pradat, the Episcopalian minister who watches the games on a television set beside his altar while performing weddings; John Ed (pronounced as three syllables, John Ay-ud), the wheeling and dealing ticket scalper whose access to good seats gives him power on par with the governor; and Paul Finebaum, the Anti-Fan, a wisecracking sports columnist and talk-radio host who makes his living mocking Alabama fans—and who has to live in a gated community for all the threats he receives in response.
In no time at all, St. John himself is drawn into the world of full-immersion fandom: he buys an RV (a $5,500 beater called The Hawg) and joins the caravan for a football season, chronicling the world of the extreme fan and learning that
in the shadow of the stadium, it can all begin to seem strangely normal.
Along the way, St. John takes readers on illuminating forays into the deep roots of humanity’s sports mania (did you know that tailgaters could be found in eighth-century Greece?), the psychology of crowds, and the surprising neuroscience behind the thrill of victory.
Reminiscent of Confederates in the Attic and the works of Bill Bryson, Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer is not only a travel story, but a cultural anthropology of fans that goes a long way toward demystifying the universal urge to take sides and to win.
An addictive, edge-of-your-seat thriller filled with the hallmark elements that made New York Times bestselling author Sidney Sheldon—"the master of the story-telling game" (People)—an international legend: shocking twists, money, power, and betrayal involving an influential family and the beautiful and formidable woman at its center whose dark secrets can destroy them all.
The conservative party's newest superstar, Alexia De Vere has worked hard to realize her political ambitions. The brilliant and ruthless wife of wealthy aristocrat Teddy De Vere, Alexia relishes her power and the control it gives her to shape and destroy lives.
Yet success has also demanded sacrifice. Her daughter, Roxie, a bitter young woman confined to a wheelchair after a failed suicide attempt, blames Alexia for ruining her life. Alexia's dashing son, Michael, is risking the family's good name to jump-start his entre-preneurial dreams. Thankfully, Alexia has Teddy, her devoted husband who will stop at nothing to protect her.
But beneath Alexia De Vere's gilded life and formidable facade lie secrets that are ugly, dirty, and deadly. When long-buried mistakes of her youth begin to resurface, old hatreds are rekindled and Alexia finds herself on the brink of losing everything—her power, her family, and even her own life. Now the woman who rose so high is on the brink of a perilous fall. For when the tides of memory rise, the only thing that might save her is the truth. . . .
From the Compact Disc edition.
This lyrical, evocative, thought-provoking journal of a man's quest for truth -- and for himself -- has touched and changed an entire generation.
At its heart, the story is all too simple: a man and his son take a lengthy motorcycle trip through America. But this is not a simple trip at all, for around every corner, through mountain and desert, wind and rain, and searing heat and biting cold, their pilgrimage leads them to new vistas of self-discovery and renewal.
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance is an elemental work that had helped to shape and define the past twenty-five years of American culture. This special audio edition presents this adventure in an exciting new way -- for the millions who have already taken this journey and want to travel these roads again, and for the many more who will discover for the first time the wonders and challenges of a journey that will change the way they think and feel about their lives.
All fingers point to the convict Julian Vega, no longer so young, out of jail on a technicality, and no longer the eager-to-please youth Loughlin first met in the interrogation room. But this is no open-and-shut case. When Loughlin arranges for a DNA test, the results blow up in his face. Soon there are bulldozers in the graveyard, exhuming twenty-year-old remains and renewing a family’s deep-seated mourning. Because there’s one thing in this case that Loughlin’s now sure of–the blood under the latest victim’s fingernails definitely doesn’t belong to Julian Vega. It doesn’t even belong to a man. It belongs to Allison Wallis, the woman murdered twenty years before.
Two men circle each other from opposite sides of the law. Both have something to prove, both are only too aware of their own limitations. Once again, Peter Blauner plunges his readers into the murky territory where right bleeds into wrong, and truth finds the most unexpected hiding place. Keenly observant, carefully crafted, and shatteringly suspenseful, this is a spellbinding new work from the bestselling author of The Intruder.
From the Cassette edition.