The Last Thing He Wanted

The Last Thing He Wanted
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780307787330
Available:
Release: 2011-02-16
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

National Bestseller This intricate, fast-paced story about "trying to create a context for democracy and getting hands a little dirty in the process" is an incisive and chilling look at a modern world where things are not working as they should—and where the oblique and official language is as sinister as the events it is covering up. The narrator introduces Elena McMahon, estranged from a life of celebrity fundraisers and from her powerful West Coast husband, Wynn Janklow, whom she has left, taking Catherine, her daughter, to become a reporter for The Washington Post. She finds herself boarding a plane for Florida to see her father. She becomes embroiled in her his business even though "she had trained herself since childhood not to have any interest in what he was doing." It is from this moment that she is caught up in something much larger than she could have imagined. Into this startling vision of conspiracies, arms dealing, and assassinations, Didion makes connections among Dallas, Iran-Contra, and Castro, and points up how "spectral companies with high-concept names tended to interlock." As this book builds to its terrifying finish, we see the underpinnings of a dark historical underbelly.

The Last Thing He Wanted

The Last Thing He Wanted
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780307787330
Available:
Release: 2011-02-16
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

National Bestseller This intricate, fast-paced story about "trying to create a context for democracy and getting hands a little dirty in the process" is an incisive and chilling look at a modern world where things are not working as they should—and where the oblique and official language is as sinister as the events it is covering up. The narrator introduces Elena McMahon, estranged from a life of celebrity fundraisers and from her powerful West Coast husband, Wynn Janklow, whom she has left, taking Catherine, her daughter, to become a reporter for The Washington Post. She finds herself boarding a plane for Florida to see her father. She becomes embroiled in her his business even though "she had trained herself since childhood not to have any interest in what he was doing." It is from this moment that she is caught up in something much larger than she could have imagined. Into this startling vision of conspiracies, arms dealing, and assassinations, Didion makes connections among Dallas, Iran-Contra, and Castro, and points up how "spectral companies with high-concept names tended to interlock." As this book builds to its terrifying finish, we see the underpinnings of a dark historical underbelly.

The Last Thing He Wanted

The Last Thing He Wanted
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 238
ISBN: 9780007291625
Available:
Release: 2008-01-01
Editor: HarperCollins UK
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Compelled by her dying father, Elena McMahon finds herself in a 'situation' in Central America, knowing neither what to expect, what to demand, nor what to call achievement.

The Last Thing I Remember

The Last Thing I Remember
Author: Andrew Klavan
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9781418575755
Available:
Release: 2010-06-07
Editor: Thomas Nelson
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Charlie West just woke up in someone else's nightmare. He's strapped to a chair. He's covered in blood and bruises. He hurts all over. And a strange voice outside the door just ordered his death. The last thing he can remember, he was a normal high-school kid doing normal things--working on his homework, practicing karate, daydreaming of becoming an air force pilot, writing a pretty girl's number on his hand. How long ago was that? Where is he now? Who is he really? And more to the point . . . how is he going to get out of this room alive?

The Last Thing He Needs

The Last Thing He Needs
Author: J. H. Knight
Pages: 202
ISBN: 1627988599
Available:
Release: 2014
Editor: Unknown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Tommy O Shea is raising his seven younger brothers and sisters without any help from his drug abusing father and stepmother. Since he was fifteen years old, he's managed to keep the children fed and out of foster care. It takes up every ounce of his energy and the last thing he needs is romance complicating his life further. Rookie cop Bobby McAlister doesn't belong in Tommy s harsh world, but Tommy can t push him out. As their unlikely friendship turns into a tentative relationship, they weather the daily storm of Tommy s life with a lot of laughs and more than a few arguments. Tommy isn't used to trusting outsiders, and he's never asked for help in his life. But when a tragedy strikes the O'Shea family and threatens everything he's fought for, he'll have to learn to do both to recover from the brutal hit. "

I Am Still Alive

I Am Still Alive
Author: Kate Alice Marshall
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9780425290996
Available:
Release: 2018-07-24
Editor: Penguin
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

"This tense wire of a novel thrums with suspense. . . . [this book] just might be the highlight of your summer.”–The New York Times Cheryl Strayed's Wild meets The Revenant in this heart-pounding story of survival and revenge in the unforgiving wilderness. After: Jess is alone. Her cabin has burned to the ground. She knows if she doesn’t act fast, the cold will kill her before she has time to worry about food. But she is still alive—for now. Before: Jess hadn’t seen her survivalist, off-the-grid dad in over a decade. But after a car crash killed her mother and left her injured, she was forced to move to his cabin in the remote Canadian wilderness. Just as Jess was beginning to get to know him, a secret from his past paid them a visit, leaving her father dead and Jess stranded. After: With only her father’s dog for company, Jess must forage and hunt for food, build shelter, and keep herself warm. Some days it feels like the wild is out to destroy her, but she’s stronger than she ever imagined. Jess will survive. She has to. She knows who killed her father…and she wants revenge.

The Year of Magical Thinking The Play

The Year of Magical Thinking  The Play
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 80
ISBN: 9780307498915
Available:
Release: 2009-04-02
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In this dramatic adaptation of her award-winning, bestselling memoir, Joan Didion transforms the story of the sudden and unexpected loss of her husband and their only daughter into a stunning and powerful one-woman play. “This happened on December 30, 2003. That may seem a while ago but it won’t when it happens to you . . .” Michiko Kakutani in The New York Times called the memoir that was the basis for the play, “an indelible portrait of loss and grief . . . a haunting portrait of a four-decade-long marriage." The first theatrical production of The Year of Magical Thinking opened at the Booth Theatre on March 29, 2007, starring Vanessa Redgrave and directed by David Hare.

Play It as It Lays

Play It as It Lays
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781504045674
Available:
Release: 2017-05-09
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A “scathing novel” of one woman’s path of self-destruction in 1960s Hollywood—by the New York Times–bestselling author of The White Album (The Washington Post Book World). Spare, elegant, and terrifying, Play It as It Lays is the unforgettable story of a woman and a society come undone. Raised in the ghost town of Silver Wells, Nevada, Maria Wyeth is an ex-model and the star of two films directed by her estranged husband, Carter Lang. But in the spiritual desert of 1960s Los Angeles, Maria has lost the plot of her own life. Her daughter, Kate, was born with an “aberrant chemical in her brain.” Her long-troubled marriage has slipped beyond repair, and her disastrous love affairs and strained friendships provide little comfort. Her only escape is to get in her car and drive the freeway—in the fast lane with the radio turned up high—until it runs out “somewhere no place at all where the flawless burning concrete just stopped.” But every ride to nowhere, every sleepless night numbed by pills and booze and sex, makes it harder for Maria to find the meaning in another day. Told with profound economy of style and a “vision as bleak and precise as Eliot’s in ‘The Wasteland’,” Play It as It Lays ruthlessly dissects the dark heart of the American dream (The New York Times). It is a searing masterpiece “from one of the very few writers of our time who approaches her terrible subject with absolute seriousness, with fear and humility and awe” (Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Times Book Review).

Democracy

Democracy
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780307787378
Available:
Release: 2011-02-16
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Moving deftly between romance, farce, and tragedy, from Honolulu to Jakarta, Democracy is a tour de force from a writer who can dissect an entire society with a single phrase. Inez Victor knows that the major casualty of the political life is memory. But the people around Inez have made careers out of losing track. Her senator husband wants to forget the failure of his last bid for the presidency. Her husband's handler would like the press to forget that Inez's father is a murderer. And, in 1975, the year in which much of this bitterly funny novel is set, America is doing its best to lose track of its one-time client, the lethally hemorrhaging republic of South Vietnam. As conceived by Joan Didion, these personages and events constitute the terminal fallout of democracy, a fallout that also includes fact-finding junkets, senatorial groupies, the international arms market, and the Orwellian newspeak of the political class.

Slouching Towards Bethlehem

Slouching Towards Bethlehem
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 361
ISBN: 9781504045650
Available:
Release: 2017-03-21
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The “dazzling” and essential portrayal of 1960s America from the author of South and West and The Year of Magical Thinking (The New York Times). Capturing the tumultuous landscape of the United States, and in particular California, during a pivotal era of social change, the first work of nonfiction from one of American literature’s most distinctive prose stylists is a modern classic. In twenty razor-sharp essays that redefined the art of journalism, National Book Award–winning author Joan Didion reports on a society gripped by a deep generational divide, from the “misplaced children” dropping acid in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district to Hollywood legend John Wayne filming his first picture after a bout with cancer. She paints indelible portraits of reclusive billionaire Howard Hughes and folk singer Joan Baez, “a personality before she was entirely a person,” and takes readers on eye-opening journeys to Death Valley, Hawaii, and Las Vegas, “the most extreme and allegorical of American settlements.” First published in 1968, Slouching Towards Bethlehem has been heralded by the New York Times Book Review as “a rare display of some of the best prose written today in this country” and named to Time magazine’s list of the one hundred best and most influential nonfiction books. It is the definitive account of a terrifying and transformative decade in American history whose discordant reverberations continue to sound a half-century later.

Political Fictions

Political Fictions
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 338
ISBN: 9780375718908
Available:
Release: 2002
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

An incisive compilation of political essays, originally written for The New York Review of Books from 1988 to 2000, explores the nature of American politics and political figures and the role of the media in transforming the American political landscape. Reprint. 35,000 first printing.

Run River

Run River
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 272
ISBN: 9780307787750
Available:
Release: 2011-02-23
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Joan Didion's electrifying first novel is a haunting portrait of a marriage whose wrong turns and betrayals are at once absolutely idiosyncratic and a razor-sharp commentary on the history of California. Everett McClellan and his wife, Lily, are the great-grandchildren of pioneers, and what happens to them is a tragic epilogue to the pioneer experience, a story of murder and betrayal that only Didion could tell with such nuance, sympathy, and suspense.

The White Album

The White Album
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 224
ISBN: 9781504045667
Available:
Release: 2017-05-09
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

New York Times Bestseller: An “elegant” mosaic of trenchant observations on the late sixties and seventies from the author of Slouching Towards Bethlehem (The New Yorker). In this landmark essay collection, Joan Didion brilliantly interweaves her own “bad dreams” with those of a nation confronting the dark underside of 1960s counterculture. From a jailhouse visit to Black Panther Party cofounder Huey Newton to witnessing First Lady of California Nancy Reagan pretend to pick flowers for the benefit of news cameras, Didion captures the paranoia and absurdity of the era with her signature blend of irony and insight. She takes readers to the “giddily splendid” Getty Museum in Los Angeles, the cool mountains of Bogotá, and the Jordanian Desert, where Bishop James Pike went to walk in Jesus’s footsteps—and died not far from his rented Ford Cortina. She anatomizes the culture of shopping malls—“toy garden cities in which no one lives but everyone consumes”—and exposes the contradictions and compromises of the women’s movement. In the iconic title essay, she documents her uneasy state of mind during the years leading up to and following the Manson murders—a terrifying crime that, in her memory, surprised no one. Written in “a voice like no other in contemporary journalism,” The White Album is a masterpiece of literary reportage and a fearless work of autobiography by the National Book Award–winning author of The Year of Magical Thinking (The New York Times Book Review). Its power to electrify and inform remains undiminished nearly forty years after it was first published.

Salvador

Salvador
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 108
ISBN: 9780679751830
Available:
Release: 1994
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The author recounts her 1982 visit to El Salvador and describes the terror, fear and political repression that permeated the country

After Henry

After Henry
Author: Joan Didion
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781504045698
Available:
Release: 2017-05-09
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Incisive essays on Patty Hearst and Reagan, the Central Park jogger and the Santa Ana winds, from the New York Times–bestselling author of South and West. In these eleven essays covering the national scene from Washington, DC; California; and New York, the acclaimed author of Slouching Towards Bethlehem and The White Album “capture[s] the mood of America” and confirms her reputation as one of our sharpest and most trustworthy cultural observers (The New York Times). Whether dissecting the 1988 presidential campaign, exploring the commercialization of a Hollywood murder, or reporting on the “sideshows” of foreign wars, Joan Didion proves that she is one of the premier essayists of the twentieth century, “an articulate witness to the most stubborn and intractable truths of our time” (Joyce Carol Oates, The New York Times Book Review). Highlights include “In the Realm of the Fisher King,” a portrait of the White House under the stewardship of Ronald and Nancy Reagan, two “actors on location;” and “Girl of the Golden West,” a meditation on the Patty Hearst case that draws an unexpected and insightful parallel between the kidnapped heiress and the emigrants who settled California. “Sentimental Journeys” is a deeply felt study of New York media coverage of the brutal rape of a white investment banker in Central Park, a notorious crime that exposed the city’s racial and class fault lines. Dedicated to Henry Robbins, Didion’s friend and editor from 1966 until his death in 1979, After Henry is an indispensable collection of “superior reporting and criticism” from a writer on whom we have relied for more than fifty years “to get the story straight” (Los Angeles Times).

The Last Book in the Universe

The Last Book in the Universe
Author: Rodman Philbrick
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780545303873
Available:
Release: 2013-03-01
Editor: Scholastic Inc.
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

This fast-paced action novel is set in a future where the world has been almost destroyed. Like the award-winning novel Freak the Mighty, this is Philbrick at his very best. It's the story of an epileptic teenager nicknamed Spaz, who begins the heroic fight to bring human intelligence back to the planet. In a world where most people are plugged into brain-drain entertainment systems, Spaz is the rare human being who can see life as it really is. When he meets an old man called Ryter, he begins to learn about Earth and its past. With Ryter as his companion, Spaz sets off an unlikely quest to save his dying sister -- and in the process, perhaps the world.

The Book of Daniel

The Book of Daniel
Author: E.L. Doctorow
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780307762955
Available:
Release: 2010-11-10
Editor: Random House
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The central figure of this novel is a young man whose parents were executed for conspiring to steal atomic secrets for Russia. His name is Daniel Isaacson, and as the story opens, his parents have been dead for many years. He has had a long time to adjust to their deaths. He has not adjusted. Out of the shambles of his childhood, he has constructed a new life—marriage to an adoring girl who gives him a son of his own, and a career in scholarship. It is a life that enrages him. In the silence of the library at Columbia University, where he is supposedly writing a Ph.D. dissertation, Daniel composes something quite different. It is a confession of his most intimate relationships—with his wife, his foster parents, and his kid sister Susan, whose own radicalism so reproaches him. It is a book of memories: riding a bus with his parents to the ill-fated Paul Robeson concert in Peekskill; watching the FBI take his father away; appearing with Susan at rallies protesting their parents’ innocence; visiting his mother and father in the Death House. It is a book of investigation: transcribing Daniel’s interviews with people who knew his parents, or who knew about them; and logging his strange researches and discoveries in the library stacks. It is a book of judgments of everyone involved in the case—lawyers, police, informers, friends, and the Isaacson family itself. It is a book rich in characters, from elderly grand- mothers of immigrant culture, to covert radicals of the McCarthy era, to hippie marchers on the Pen-tagon. It is a book that spans the quarter-century of American life since World War II. It is a book about the nature of Left politics in this country—its sacrificial rites, its peculiar cruelties, its humility, its bitterness. It is a book about some of the beautiful and terrible feelings of childhood. It is about the nature of guilt and innocence, and about the relations of people to nations. It is The Book of Daniel.

The Kite Runner

The Kite Runner
Author: Khaled Hosseini
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9781408824856
Available:
Release: 2011-09-05
Editor: A&C Black
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Over 21 million copies sold worldwide

The Last Thing She Ever Did

The Last Thing She Ever Did
Author: Gregg Olsen
Pages: 380
ISBN: 1542046424
Available:
Release: 2018
Editor: Thomas & Mercer
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Oregon's Deschutes River. For years Liz and Owen have admired their neighbors, Carole and David, who seem to have it all: security, happiness, and a beautiful son, Charlie. Then Charlie vanishes without a trace. In a heartrending accident, Liz has changed the lives of everyone she loves-- and is concealing it. As two marriages buckle in grief and fear, Liz retreats into guilt and paranoia... and another neighbor has his own secrets, his own pain, and his own reasons for watching Liz's every move.

The Great Gatsby with Audio Text

The Great Gatsby  with Audio   Text
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
Pages: 500
ISBN:
Available:
Release: 2021-03-13
Editor: East West Studio
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The Great Gatsby is a 1925 novel written by American author F. Scott Fitzgerald that follows a cast of characters living in the fictional town of West and East Egg on prosperous Long Island in the summer of 1922. The story primarily concerns the young and mysterious millionaire Jay Gatsby and his quixotic passion and obsession for the beautiful former debutante Daisy Buchanan. The Great Gatsby explores themes of decadence, idealism, resistance to change, social upheaval, and excess, creating a portrait of the Jazz Age or the Roaring Twenties that has been described as a cautionary tale regarding the American Dream. Set on the prosperous Long Island of 1922, The Great Gatsby provides a critical social history of America during the Roaring Twenties within its fictional narrative. That era, known for profound economic prosperity, the development of jazz music flapper culture, new technologies in communication (motion pictures, broadcast radio, recorded music) forging a genuine mass culture; and bootlegging, along with other criminal activity, is plausibly depicted in Fitzgerald's novel. Fitzgerald uses many of these societal developments of the 1920s that were to build Gatsby's stories from many of the simple details like automobiles to broader themes like Fitzgerald's discreet allusions to the organized crime culture which was the source of Gatsby's fortune. Fitzgerald depicts the garish society of the Roaring Twenties by placing the book's plotline within the historical context of the era.