John Barth's lively, highly original collection of short pieces is a major landmark of experimental fiction. Though many of the stories gathered here were published separately, there are several themes common to them all, giving them new meaning in the context of this collection.
"Darwin ate (U) his mark."
Kaspian is tended by a woman who offers him her breasts as way of sustaining his life. At first, he looks at the situation as a necessity, but he soon comes to crave it. He struggles to keep his feelings from the widowed woman, but it becomes increasingly difficult. For a man who has known little compassion or kindness in his life, Madelayne comes to represent everything he has been missing. She soon becomes to represent everything he wants, and he wants her.
"Le Veque and Wills: The Dynamic "Medieval" Duo!"
Wendy McClure is on a quest to find the world of beloved Little House on the Prairie author Laura Ingalls Wilder - a fantastic realm of fiction, history, and places McClure has never been to yet somehow knows by heart. She traces the pioneer journey of the Ingalls family - looking for the Big Woods among the medium trees in Wisconsin, wading in Plum Creek, and enduring a prairie hailstorm in South Dakota. She immerses herself in all things Little House - exploring the story from fact to fiction, and from the TV shows to the annual summer pageants in Laura’s hometowns.
"Sweet, light; maybe too light?"
In the polygamous Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (FLDS), girls can become valuable property as plural wives, but boys are expendable, even a liability. In this powerful and heartbreaking account, former FLDS member Brent Jeffs reveals both the terror and the love he experienced growing up on his prophet's compound and the harsh exile existence that so many boys face once they have been expelled by the sect.
"Very well done."
Oxford lecturer Diana Morgan is an expert on Greek mythology. Her obsession with the Amazons started in childhood when her eccentric grandmother claimed to be one herself - before vanishing without a trace. Diana’s colleagues shake their heads at her Amazon fixation. But then a mysterious, well-financed foundation makes Diana an offer she cannot refuse. Traveling to North Africa, Diana teams up with Nick Barran, an enigmatic Middle Eastern guide, and begins deciphering an unusual inscription on the wall of a recently unearthed temple.
"Not that impressed"
When Anthony Shadid—one of four New York Times reporters captured in Libya as the region erupted—was freed, he went home, not to Boston, Beirut, or Oklahoma, where he was raised by his Lebanese American family, but to an ancient estate built by his great-grandfather, a place filled with memories of a lost era when the Middle East was a world of grace, grandeur, and unexpected departures.
"An unexpected pleasure"
In 1925, the international treasure-hunting scene is a man’s world, and no woman knows this better than Irene Blum, who is passed over for the coveted curator position at Seattle’s renowned Brooke Museum. But she is not ready to accept defeat. Skilled at acquiring priceless, often illicitly trafficked artifacts, Irene is given a rare map believed to lead to a set of copper scrolls that chronicle the lost history of Cambodia’s ancient Khmer civilization. Such a find would not only restore her reputation, it would be the greatest archaeological discovery of the century.
Orson Welles both starred in and directed The Campbell Playhouse, a radio drama (1938-40) produced by Welles and John Houseman. The episodes include adaptions of classic novels and plays as well as radio versions of the era's popular films.
"Have to be in a quiet place"
Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon is summoned to deliver an evening lecture in the U.S. Capitol. Within minutes of his arrival, the night takes a bizarre turn. A disturbing object is discovered in the Capitol Building. The object is an ancient invitation, meant to usher its recipient into a long-lost world of hidden esoteric wisdom. And when Langdon's mentor is kidnapped, Langdon's only hope of saving him is to accept this invitation and follow wherever it leads him.
"A Great Mix of History, Philosophy and Faith!"
A sensational disappearance that made headlines around the world. A quest for truth that leads to death, madness or disappearance for those who seek to solve it. The Lost City of Z is a blockbuster adventure narrative about what lies beneath the impenetrable jungle canopy of the Amazon. After stumbling upon a hidden trove of diaries, acclaimed New Yorker writer David Grann set out to find out what happened to the British explorer Percy Fawcett and his quest for the Lost City of Z.
"A Worthy Read for Armchair Explorers"
In AD 476 the Roman Empire fell - or rather, its western half did. Its eastern half, which would come to be known as the Byzantine Empire, would endure and often flourish for another 11 centuries. Though its capital would move to Constantinople, its citizens referred to themselves as Roman for the entire duration of the empire's existence.
"Just a delight for anyone interested in history !"
A portrait of a woman who reflects the conventions of her age even as she defies them and whose transformations embody the decline and coarsening of the American frontier.
"In love with books again"
Lillian and her restaurant have a way of drawing people together. There’s Al, the accountant who finds meaning in numbers and ritual; Chloe, a budding chef who hasn’t learned to trust after heartbreak; Finnegan, quiet and steady as a tree, who can disappear into the background despite his massive height; Louise, Al’s wife, whose anger simmers just below the boiling point; and Isabelle, whose memories are slowly slipping from her grasp. And there’s Lillian herself, whose life has taken a turn she didn’t expect....
"Really Good Story"
"Lost Jobs, Houses, Savings: Even Insured Often Face Crushing Medical Debt" is from The Upshot section of The New York Times. It was written by Margot Sanger Katz and narrated by Fleet Cooper.
In this original short story, Jo Marie Rose readies her inn for spring, turning to her new friends Grace and Olivia when she needs them most.
Jo Marie has big plans for her bed-and-breakfast. With the help of handyman Mark Taylor, she intends to plant a beautiful rose garden in time for her upcoming open house. Jo Marie and Mark rarely see eye to eye - especially on matters of home improvement - but she knows he has her best interests at heart. After the two walk the grounds, Jo Marie realizes that her beloved rescue dog, Rover, is missing....
"Lost and Found in Cedar Cove (Short Story)"
In St. Petersburg, Russia, world chess champion Aleksandr Bezetov begins a quixotic quest. With his renowned Cold War–era tournaments behind him, Aleksandr has turned to politics, launching a dissident presidential campaign against Vladimir Putin. He knows he will not win - and that he is risking his life in the process - but a deeper conviction propels him forward. And in the same way that he cannot abandon his aims, he cannot erase the memory of a mysterious woman he loved in his youth.
"What a great book"
Leaving the Saints is an unforgettable memoir about one woman's spiritual quest and journey toward faith. As "Mormon royalty" within the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Martha Beck was raised in a home frequented by the Church's high elders, known as the apostles, and her existence was framed by their strict code of conduct.
"Read it and decide for yourself"
An Italian village on a hilltop near the Adriatic coast, a decaying palazzo facing the sea, and in the basement, cobwebbed and dusty, lit by a single bulb, an archive unknown to scholars. Here, a young graduate student from Rome, Francesca Cappelletti, makes a discovery that inspires a search for a work of art of incalculable value, a painting lost for almost two centuries.
"an incredible and complex story unfolds seamlessly"
People on the right are furious. People on the left are livid. And the center isn't holding. There is only one thing on which almost everyone agrees: there is something very wrong in Washington. The country is being run by pollsters. Few politicians are able to win the voters' trust. Blame abounds and personal responsibility is nowhere to be found. There is a cynicism in Washington that appalls those in every state, red or blue.