The Devils of Cardona

The Devils of Cardona
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 416
ISBN: 9781101982754
Available:
Release: 2016-06-14
Editor: Penguin
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

"A thrilling quest for justice... [A] novel that is as exciting as it is enlightening from its first pages to its satisfying end.” —The New York Times Book Review “A page-turner in the proper sense… Mr. Carr has written a gripping and enjoyable novel.” —The Wall Street Journal The gripping story of the dangerous high-stakes worlds of politics and religion in sixteenth-century Spain as a mysterious Muslim killer retaliates against the Catholic Church. In March 1584, the priest of Belamar de la Sierra, a small town in Aragon near the French border, is murdered in his own church. Most of the town’s inhabitants are Moriscos, former Muslims who converted to Catholicism. Anxious to avert a violent backlash on the eve of a royal visit, an adviser to King Philip II appoints local magistrate Bernardo de Mendoza to investigate. A soldier and humanist, Mendoza doesn’t always live up to the moral standards expected of court officials, but he has a reputation for incorruptibility. From the beginning, Mendoza finds almost universal hatred for the priest. And it isn’t long before he’s drawn into a complex and dangerous world in which greed, fanaticism, and state policy overlap. And as the killings continue, Mendoza's investigation is overshadowed by the real prospect of an ethnic and religious civil war. By turns an involving historical thriller and a novel with parallels to our own time, The Devils of Cardona is an unexpected and compelling read.

The Savage Frontier

The Savage Frontier
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 331
ISBN: 9781620974285
Available:
Release: 2018-12-18
Editor: The New Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A sweeping historical travelogue of the contentious border of France and Spain, in the great tradition of Bruce Chatwin and Jan Morris With the Catalonia crisis making international headlines, the unique cultural and geographic region bordering Spain and France has once again moved to the center of the world’s attention. In The Savage Frontier, acclaimed author and journalist Matthew Carr uncovers the fascinating, multilayered story of the Pyrenees region—at once a forbidding, mountainous frontier zone of stunning beauty, home to a unique culture, and a site of sharp conflict between nations and empires. Carr follows the routes taken by monks, soldiers, poets, pilgrims, and refugees. He examines the people and events that have shaped the Pyrenees across the centuries, with a cast of characters including Napoleon, Hannibal, and Charlemagne; the eccentric British climber Henry Russell; Francisco Sabaté Llopart, the Catalan anarchist who waged a lone war against the Franco regime across the Pyrenees for years after the civil war; Camino de Santiago pilgrims; and the cellist Pablo Casals, who spent twenty-three years in exile only a few miles from the Spanish border to show his disgust and disapproval of the Spanish regime. The Savage Frontier is a book that will spark a new awareness and appreciation of one of the most haunting, magical, and dramatic landscapes on earth.

Black Sun Rising

Black Sun Rising
Author: Mathew Carr
Pages: 368
ISBN: 1643134248
Available:
Release: 2020-06-02
Editor: Pegasus Crime
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A riveting thriller combining real historical events and characters with a sinister detective story of eugenics, racism, and nationalist paranoia. Barcelona, summer 1909. When the scientist and explorer Randolph Foulkes is blown up in a random terrorist bomb attack, private detective Harry Lawton is hired by the man’s widow to identify the beneficiary of a large payment Foulkes had made shortly before his death. Lawton’s arrival in the Catalan capital coincides with a series of unusual killings that appear to have been carried out by a blood-drinking animal in the Ramblas district and adds another element of instability to a city already teetering on the brink of insurrection. Lawton soon meets and teams up with Esperanza Claramunt, a young anarchist whose lover was one of the victims of the “beast of the Ramblas,” and the Catalan crime reporter Bernat Mata, who has begun investigating these crimes. So what begins as a straightforward investigation into presumed marital infidelity turns into something far more sinister, as Lawton probes Foulkes’ connections to the mysterious Explorers Club, the Barcelona political police, and an eccentric Austrian hypnotist. Adrift in a city gripped by rebellion and lawlessness, Lawton enters a labyrinth of murder, corruption, political conflict, and crazed racial pseudo-science where no one’s survival is guaranteed.

Blood and Faith

Blood and Faith
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 383
ISBN: 9781849040273
Available:
Release: 2009
Editor: Hurst Publishers
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In 1609, Philip III signed an edict denouncing the Muslims of Spain as heretics & the entire population was given three days to leave, on threat of death. In the exodus, 300,000 Muslims were deported & by 1614 Spain had successfully implemented the largest act of ethnic cleansing in European history. The author chronicles this episode.

Blood and Faith

Blood and Faith
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 329
ISBN: 9781787384354
Available:
Release: 2017-02-17
Editor: Oxford University Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In 1609, the entire Muslim population of Spain was given three days to leave Spanish territory or else be killed. In a brutal and traumatic exodus, entire families were forced to abandon the homes and villages where they had lived for generations. In just five years, Muslim Spain had effectively ceased to exist: an estimated 300,000 Muslims had been removed from Spanish territory making it what was then the largest act of ethnic cleansing in European history. Blood and Faith is a riveting chronicle of this virtually unknown episode, set against the vivid historical backdrop of Muslim Spain. It offers a remarkable window onto a little-known period in modern Europe - a rich and complex tale of competing faiths and beliefs, of cultural oppression and resistance against overwhelming odds.

The August 5

The August 5
Author: Jenna Helland
Pages: 192
ISBN: 9780374302863
Available:
Release: 2015-11-10
Editor: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In a world rocked by revolt, your worst enemy can become your greatest hope Fourteen-year-old Tommy Shore lives a life of privilege: he has the finest clothing, food, and education available and servants to take care of his every whim. He is the son of the chief administrator of Aeren-the most important man on the islands. Fifteen-year-old Tamsin Henry has grown up knowing only poverty, but she is the daughter of a revolutionary who longs to give her and their people more. Ordinarily, Tommy and Tamsin would never cross paths, but on the day of a violent and deadly revolt, chance brings them together. Now the world waits to hear the fate of the August 5, five men led by, and including, Tamsin's father and captured during the uprising. As tensions between the government and the rebels escalate, Tommy uncovers a brutal truth about his father. How will he ever get Tamsin to trust that he wants to help her cause, when she believes he stands for everything she's fighting against?

Queen of the Air

Queen of the Air
Author: Dean N. Jensen
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9780307986580
Available:
Release: 2013-06-11
Editor: Crown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A true life Water for Elephants, Queen of the Air brings the circus world to life through the gorgeously written, true story of renowned trapeze artist and circus performer Leitzel, Queen of the Air, the most famous woman in the world at the turn of the 20th century, and her star-crossed love affair with Alfredo Codona, of the famous Flying Codona Brothers. Like today's Beyonce, Madonna, and Cher, she was known to her vast public by just one name, Leitzel. There may have been some regions on earth where her name was not a household expression, but if so, they were likely on polar ice caps or in the darkest, deepest jungles. Leitzel was born into Dickensian circumstances, and became a princess and then a queen. She was not much bigger than a good size fairy, just four-foot-ten and less than 100 pounds. In the first part of the 20th century, she presided over a sawdust fiefdom of never-ending magic. She was the biggest star ever of the biggest circus ever, the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus, The Greatest Show on Earth. In her life, Leitzel had many suitors (and three husbands), but only one man ever fully captured her heart. He was the handsome Alfredo Codona, the greatest trapeze flyer that had ever lived, the only one in his time who, night after night, executed the deadliest of all big-top feats, The Triple--three somersaults in midair while traveling at 60 m.p.h. The Triple, the salto mortale, as the Italians called it, took the lives of more daredevils than any other circus stunt.

Off Rock

Off Rock
Author: Kieran Shea
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781785653391
Available:
Release: 2017-04-18
Editor: Titan Books (US, CA)
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

“Five awesome and entertaining words to describe this one: 'Bank heist set in space.' Yes, please” - io9 In the year 2778, Jimmy Vik is feeling dissatisfied. After busting his ass for assorted interstellar mining outfits for close to two decades, downsizing is in the wind, his ex-girlfriend/supervisor is climbing up his back, and daily Jimmy wonders if he’s played his last good hand. So when Jimmy stumbles upon a significant gold pocket during a routine procedure on Kardashev 7-A, he believes his luck may have changed—larcenously so. But smuggling the gold “off rock” won’t be easy. To do it, Jimmy will have to contend with a wily criminal partner, a gorgeous covert assassin, the suspicions of his ex, and the less than honorable intentions of an encroaching, rival mining company. As the clock ticks down, treachery and betrayal loom, the body count rises, and soon Jimmy has no idea who to trust.

Fortress Europe

Fortress Europe
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9781620972335
Available:
Release: 2016-01-12
Editor: New Press, The
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Singled out by Foreign Affairs for its reporting on “the brutal frontiers of new Europe,” Fortress Europe is the story of how the world’s most affluent region—and history’s greatest experiment with globalization—has become an immigration war zone, where tens of thousands have died in a humanitarian crisis that has galvanized the world’s attention. Journalist Matthew Carr brings to life remarkable human dramas, based on ex- tensive interviews and firsthand reporting from the hot zones of Europe’s immigration battles, in a narrative that moves from the desperate immigrant camps at the mouth of the Channel Tunnel in Calais, France, to the chaotic Mediterranean sea, where African migrants have drowned by the thousands. Speaking with key European policy makers, police, soldiers on the front lines, immigrant rights activists, and an astonishing range of migrants themselves, Carr offers a lucid account both of the broad issues at stake in the crisis and its exorbitant human costs. The paperback edition includes a new afterword by the author, which offers an up-to-the-minute assessment of the 2015 crisis and a searing critique of Europe’s response to the new waves of refugees.

The Struggle for Catalonia

The Struggle for Catalonia
Author: Raphael Minder
Pages: 355
ISBN: 9781849049375
Available:
Release: 2017-09-01
Editor: Oxford University Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Every year on 11 September, Catalonia celebrates its Diada, its National Day. But the Diada of 2012 was like none other, as an enormous crowd calling for Catalan independence took over the heart of Barcelona. Despite the carnival-like atmosphere that day, the people were very serious about their demands. On the back of this show of force, Catalonia's governing politicians turned secessionist claims into a new headache for a government in Madrid that had only just survived a near-meltdown of Spain's financial system. Four years later, the separatist challenge has neither come to fruition, nor faded away. This book looks at how and why Catalan separatism reached the top of Spain's political agenda, as well as its connection to the broader European malaise generated by flawed political responses to financial and other crises. Through extensive travel and reporting, as well as over fifty interviews with leading Catalan personalities, Raphael Minder explains how Catalans feel about their economy, history and culture, and how secessionist forces have tried to reshape Catalan identity.

Lazaretto

Lazaretto
Author: Diane McKinney-Whetstone
Pages: 352
ISBN: 9780062126986
Available:
Release: 2016-04-12
Editor: Harper Collins
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

This stunning new novel from Diane McKinney-Whetstone, nationally bestselling author of Tumbling, begins in the chaotic backstreets of post–Civil War Philadelphia as a young black woman gives birth to a child fathered by her wealthy white employer. In a city riven by racial tension, the father’s transgression is unforgivable. He has already arranged to take the baby, so it falls to Sylvia, the midwife’s teenage apprentice, to tell Meda that her child is dead—a lie that will define the course of both women’s lives. A devastated Meda dedicates herself to working in an orphanage and becomes a surrogate mother to two white boys; while Sylvia, fueled by her guilt, throws herself into her nursing studies and finds a post at the Lazaretto, the country’s first quarantine hospital, situated near the Delaware River, just south of Philadelphia. The Lazaretto is a crucible of life and death; sick passengers and corpses are quarantined here, but this is also the place where immigrants take their first steps toward the American dream. The live-in staff are mostly black Philadelphians, and when two of them arrange to marry, the city’s black community prepares for a party on its grounds. But the celebration is plunged into chaos when gunshots ring out across the river. As Sylvia races to save the victim, the fates of Meda’s beloved orphans also converge on the Lazaretto. Long ago, one “brother” committed an unthinkable act to protect the other, sparking a chain of events that now puts the Lazaretto on lockdown. Here conflicts escalate, lies collapse, and secrets begin to surface; like dead men rising, past sins cannot be contained.

Sherman s Ghosts

Sherman s Ghosts
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 212
ISBN: 9781620970782
Available:
Release: 2012-03-13
Editor: New Press, The
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

This “thought-provoking” military history considers the influence of General Sherman’s Civil War tactics on American conflicts through the twentieth century (The New York Times). “To know what war is, one should follow our tracks,” Gen. William T. Sherman once wrote to his wife, describing the devastation left by his armies in Georgia. Sherman’s Ghosts is an investigation of those tracks, as well as those left across the globe by the American military in the 150 years since Sherman’s infamous “March to the Sea.” Sherman’s Ghosts opens with an epic retelling of General Sherman’s fateful decision to terrorize the South’s civilian population in order to break the back of the Confederacy. Acclaimed journalist and historian Matthew Carr exposes how this strategy, which Sherman called “indirect warfare,” became the central preoccupation of war planners in the twentieth century and beyond. He offers a lucid assessment of the impact Sherman’s slash-and-burn policies have had on subsequent wars and military conflicts, including World War II and in the Philippines, Korea, Vietnam, and even Iraq and Afghanistan. In riveting accounts of military campaigns and in the words of American soldiers and strategists, Carr finds ample evidence of Sherman’s long shadow. Sherman’s Ghosts is a rare reframing of how we understand our violent history and a call to action for those who hope to change it.

Long Black Veil

Long Black Veil
Author: Jennifer Finney Boylan
Pages: 320
ISBN: 9780451496348
Available:
Release: 2017-04-11
Editor: Crown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Publishers Weekly’s Best Books of 2017 For fans of Donna Tartt and Megan Abbott, a novel about a woman whose family and identity are threatened by the secrets of her past, from the New York Times bestselling author of She's Not There On a warm August night in 1980, six college students sneak into the dilapidated ruins of Philadelphia’s Eastern State Penitentiary, looking for a thrill. With a pianist, a painter and a teacher among them, the friends are full of potential. But it’s not long before they realize they are locked in—and not alone. When the friends get lost and separated, the terrifying night ends in tragedy, and the unexpected, far-reaching consequences reverberate through the survivors’ lives. As they go their separate ways, trying to move on, it becomes clear that their dark night in the prison has changed them all. Decades later, new evidence is found, and the dogged detective investigating the cold case charges one of them—celebrity chef Jon Casey— with murder. Only Casey’s old friend Judith Carrigan can testify to his innocence. But Judith is protecting long-held secrets of her own – secrets that, if brought to light, could destroy her career as a travel writer and tear her away from her fireman husband and teenage son. If she chooses to help Casey, she risks losing the life she has fought to build and the woman she has struggled to become. In any life that contains a “before” and an “after,” how is it possible to live one life, not two? Weaving deftly between 1980 and the present day, and told in an unforgettable voice, Long Black Veil is an intensely atmospheric thriller that explores the meaning of identity, loyalty, and love. Readers will hail this as Boylan’s triumphant return to fiction.

The Western Wind

The Western Wind
Author: Samantha Harvey
Pages: 329
ISBN: 9780802146533
Available:
Release: 2018-11-13
Editor: Grove Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

An extraordinary new novel by Samantha Harvey—whose books have been nominated for the Man Booker Prize, the Women’s Prize for Fiction (formerly the Orange Prize), and the Guardian First Book Award—The Western Wind is a riveting story of faith, guilt, and the freedom of confession. It’s 1491. In the small village of Oakham, its wealthiest and most industrious resident, Tom Newman, is swept away by the river during the early hours of Shrove Saturday. Was it murder, suicide, or an accident? Narrated from the perspective of local priest John Reve—patient shepherd to his wayward flock—a shadowy portrait of the community comes to light through its residents’ tortured revelations. As some of their darkest secrets are revealed, the intrigue of the unexplained death ripples through the congregation. But will Reve, a man with secrets of his own, discover what happened to Newman? And what will happen if he can’t? Written with timeless eloquence, steeped in the spiritual traditions of the Middle Ages, and brimming with propulsive suspense, The Western Wind finds Samantha Harvey at the pinnacle of her outstanding novelistic power.

Westside Saints

Westside Saints
Author: W.M. Akers
Pages: 304
ISBN: 9780062854063
Available:
Release: 2020-05-05
Editor: HarperCollins
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Return to a twisted version of Jazz Age New York in this follow up to the critically acclaimed fantasy Westside, as relentless sleuth Gilda Carr’s pursuit of tiny mysteries drags her into a case that will rewrite everything she knows about her past. Six months ago, the ruined Westside of Manhattan erupted into civil war, and private detective Gilda Carr nearly died to save her city. In 1922, winter has hit hard, and the desolate Lower West is frozen solid. Like the other lost souls who wander these overgrown streets, Gilda is weary, cold, and desperate for hope. She finds a mystery instead. Hired by a family of eccentric street preachers to recover a lost saint’s finger, Gilda is tempted by their promise of “electric resurrection,” when the Westside’s countless dead will return to life. To a detective this cynical, faith is a weakness, and she is fighting the urge to believe in miracles when her long dead mother, Mary Fall, walks through the parlor door. Stricken with amnesia, Mary remembers nothing of her daughter or her death, but that doesn’t stop her from being as infuriatingly pushy as Gilda herself. As her mother threatens to drive her insane, Gilda keeps their relationship a secret so that they can work together to investigate what brought Mary back to life. The search will force Gilda to reckon with the nature of death, family, and the uncomfortable fact that her mother was not just a saint, but a human being.

The Rules of the Game

The Rules of the Game
Author: Leonard Downie, Jr.
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9780307271228
Available:
Release: 2009-01-13
Editor: Knopf
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

From Leonard Downie Jr., longtime editor of The Washington Post, an eye-opening novel of corruption, deception, and intrigue in our nation’s capital. Sarah Page, a rising star at the Washington Capital, has been assigned to cover the dark world of politics and money in Washington. But when she begins to investigate an influential lobbyist and his clients, she realizes that little is what it seems. As Sarah digs deeper, one of her sources is murdered and others disappear. She herself is the target of a car bomb, and a late-night caller warns that she is jeopardizing national security. And while she is determined to pursue the story wherever it leads, her own romantic indiscretions leave her vulnerable. Sarah is helped by Pat Scully, an evasive, cryptic source in hiding; Kit Morgan, a ubiquitous presence in the national security community whose employer remains a mystery; and Chris Collins, a cooperative congressman whose motives are obscure. When President Susan Cameron—suddenly thrust into the job when her predecessor dies in the White House—is confronted with what Sarah has found, the scheming of her top aides and her own political survival come into conflict with her duty to the country. No one knows more about Washington, its inner workings and secrets than Leonard Downie Jr. And no novel has better captured the tensions among business interests, politicians, and the press, or the morally ambiguous ways in which all three really work. The Rules of the Game is a riveting and searing debut.

The Infernal Machine

The Infernal Machine
Author: Matthew Carr
Pages: 501
ISBN: 184904080X
Available:
Release: 2006
Editor: Unknown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Today, political violence has become the scourge of our world and terrorism is routinely described as a uniquely modern evil. Yet however unprecedented in scope the new terrorist organizations might appear, Matthew Carr argues in this definitive history of terrorism that they are merely offshoots of a spectacular bombing in 1881: the assassination of Tsar Nicholas II by terrorists ...or were they freedom fighters? Thus begins a narrative of extraordinary sweep that Publishers Weekly called 'engrossing, unsettling' and the Boston Globe praised as 'brave and wise' and 'a book for the ages.' In The Infernal Machine, Carr unearths the complex realities of terrorist violence and its indelible impact on nations as different as Italy, Argentina, France, Algeria, Ireland, Russia, Japan, and the United States. Spanning over a century of world history, The Infernal Machine reveals stunning similarities in societies' responses to terrorism despite profound political and cultural differences. Carr demonstrates again and again that the true impact of terrorism has been felt in the overreactions of government and the media to acts of political violence. This encyclopedic and diagnostic primer for our frightening times allows us to see our current predicament against a background of striking historical parallels.

General Escobar s War

General Escobar s War
Author: Olaizola, Jose Luis
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781681497280
Available:
Release: 2016-08
Editor: Ignatius Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

"The best Spanish novel about the Spanish Civil War." — Álvaro Mutis, Author, The Adventures and Misadventures of Maqroll, winner of the Neustadt International Prize for Literature Winner of Spain's prestigious Planeta Prize for fiction, this historical novel takes the form of an imagined diary by General Antonio Escobar, the highest-ranking officer of the Republican Army remaining in Spain at the end of the Spanish Civil War, while he awaited trial and execution. Besides being a vivid reminder of how destructive political passions can be, General Escobar's War is also a profoundly intimate portrait of an inspiring man. By his decisive action on July 19, 1936, Escobar, then a Civil Guard colonel and a man of profound religious conviction, succeeded in thwarting the military uprising in Barcelona. Although his father was a hero of the Spanish-American War in Cuba, his daughter was a nun, and one of his sons was a Falangist fighter, Escobar freely chose to defend the Republic in accordance with his oath to support the legally constituted government. The author gives a rare perspective of the Spanish Civil War, free of partisanship and ideology, through a soldier who, in Spain's great historic schism, chose to take a deeply uncomfortable stance because he believed his duty called him to do so.

The Feed

The Feed
Author: Nick Clark Windo
Pages: 336
ISBN: 9780062651884
Available:
Release: 2018-03-13
Editor: HarperCollins
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

“Think The Road intricately wrapped around Station Eleven with a dash of Oryx and Crake...Windo pushes all the right buttons in this post-apocalyptic mashup.” -- Kirkus Set in a post-apocalyptic world as unique and vividly imagined as those of Mad Max and The Girl with All the Gifts, a startling and timely debut that explores what it is to be human and what it truly means to be connected in the digital age. IT MAKES US. IT DESTROYS US. NOW WE MUST LEARN TO LIVE WITHOUT IT. The Feed is accessible everywhere, by everyone, at any time. It instantaneously links us to all information and global events as they break. Every interaction, every emotion, every image can be shared through it; it is the essential tool everyone relies on to know and understand the thoughts and feelings of partners, parents, friends, children, colleagues, bosses, employees . . . in fact, of anyone and everyone else in the world. Tom and Kate use the Feed, but Tom has resisted its addiction, which makes him suspect to his family. After all, his father created it. But that opposition to constant connection serves Tom and Kate well when the Feed collapses after a horrific tragedy shatters the world as they know it. The Feed’s collapse, taking modern society with it, leaves people scavenging to survive. Finding food is truly a matter of life and death. Minor ailments, previously treatable, now kill. And while the collapse has demolished the trappings of the modern world, it has also eroded trust. In a world where survival of the fittest is a way of life, there is no one to depend upon except yourself . . . and maybe even that is no longer true. Tom and Kate have managed to protect themselves and their family. But then their six-year-old daughter, Bea, goes missing. Who has taken her? How do you begin to look for someone in a world without technology? And what happens when you can no longer even be certain that the people you love are really who they claim to be?

Soul Stealer

Soul Stealer
Author: Martin Booth
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780316087193
Available:
Release: 2009-10-31
Editor: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Pip and her twin brother, Tim, join forces again with Sebastian, the alchemist's son they awakened from a centuries-long slumber, to fight against an evil magician who learns people's deepest secrets in order to control their souls.