Category: Books

July 21st, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

The second original companion novel to Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal follows Naia and Kylan as they seek help from the Gelfling clans to prevent the Skeksis from implementing the next stage of their sinister plan.

Kylan of Sami Thicket is a skilled song teller, but singing the tales of long-gone heroes won’t help his friends as they journey into dangerous, unknown lands. After uncovering the betrayal of the Skeksis Lords, he and his friend Naia are on the run, pursued by the Skeksis’s underlings and outcast even among their fellow Gelfling. But Kylan knows the truth must be told, no matter how difficult the telling. Maybe there’s use for a song teller after all . . .

Jim Henson’s The Dark Crystal is one of the most beloved and enduring fantasy stories of the past thirty years. This series of young adult novels will both please the diehard fans and bring new fans in to the world of The Dark Crystal.

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July 20th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

Seven hours before the release of a Harry Potter book on July 20, 2007. (Book six I think…?)

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July 14th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From BigFinish.com :

“You will be always looking in the wrong place. I have searched through all of Time and I cannot find it.”

The search for the Key to Time has stalled: the next segment does not appear to exist anywhere in the Universe. Forced into a temporary alliance with one of his greatest enemies, the Doctor suggests a course of action that is a validation of chaos itself.

Thrown at random across Space and Time, the Doctor and Amy arrive in 9th Century Sudan, where the greedy Lord Cassim is hoarding gold from the Legate of the Caliph. But why does Cassim look so familiar? What is the mysterious Djinni that lives out in the desert? And why does it need so much treasure?

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July 7th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
WALL STREET JOURNAL BESTSELLER
 
The Globe and Mail Top Leadership and Management Book
Forbes Top Creative Leadership Book
 

From the visionary head of Google’s innovative People Operations comes a groundbreaking inquiry into the philosophy of work-and a blueprint for attracting the most spectacular talent to your business and ensuring that they succeed.

“We spend more time working than doing anything else in life. It’s not right that the experience of work should be so demotivating and dehumanizing.” So says Laszlo Bock, former head of People Operations at the company that transformed how the world interacts with knowledge.

This insight is the heart of WORK RULES!, a compelling and surprisingly playful manifesto that offers lessons including:

  • Take away managers’ power over employees
  • Learn from your best employees-and your worst
  • Hire only people who are smarter than you are, no matter how long it takes to find them
  • Pay unfairly (it’s more fair!)
  • Don’t trust your gut: Use data to predict and shape the future
  • Default to open-be transparent and welcome feedback
  • If you’re comfortable with the amount of freedom you’ve given your employees, you haven’t gone far enough.

Drawing on the latest research in behavioral economics and a profound grasp of human psychology, WORK RULES! also provides teaching examples from a range of industries-including lauded companies that happen to be hideous places to work and little-known companies that achieve spectacular results by valuing and listening to their employees. Bock takes us inside one of history’s most explosively successful businesses to reveal why Google is consistently rated one of the best places to work in the world, distilling 15 years of intensive worker R&D into principles that are easy to put into action, whether you’re a team of one or a team of thousands.

WORK RULES! shows how to strike a balance between creativity and structure, leading to success you can measure in quality of life as well as market share. Read it to build a better company from within rather than from above; read it to reawaken your joy in what you do.

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June 30th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

The lives of the Barretts are torn apart when fourteen-year-old Marjorie begins to display signs of acute schizophrenia. As their stable home devolves into a house of horrors, they soon find themselves the unwitting stars of a hit reality television show. When events explode in tragedy, the shocking incidents become the stuff of urban legend. Fifteen years later, a writer interviews Marjorie’s younger sister, Merry. As she recalls the events that took place, long-buried secrets and painful memories begin to surface– and a mind-bending tale of psychological horror is unleashed, raising questions about memory and reality, science and religion, and the very nature of evil.

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June 23rd, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

The Shadows grow ever darker across the Demi-Monde. And as the soldiers of Heydrich’s ForthRight goose-step into Paris and the long-forgotten evil that is Lilith is awoken, it falls to Norma Williams to lead the resistance. Lost in the virtual nightmare that is the Demi-Monde, she must come to terms with these terrible responsibilities and with the knowledge that those she thought were her friends are now her enemies. To triumph in this surreal cyber-world she must be more than she ever believed she could be…or perish.

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June 16th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

The Bond That Never Was

Two decades ago, the producers of the James Bond movies hired legendary crime novelist Donald E. Westlake to come up with a story for the next Bond film. The plot Westlake dreamed up – about a Western businessman seeking revenge after being kicked out of Hong Kong when the island was returned to Chinese rule – had all the elements of a classic Bond adventure, but political concerns kept it from being made. Never one to let a good story go to waste, Westlake wrote an original novel based on the premise instead – a novel he never published while he was alive.

Now, nearly a decade after Westlake’s death, Hard Case Crime is proud to give that novel its first publication ever, together with a brand new afterword by one of the movie producers describing the project’s genesis, and to give fans their first taste of the Westlake-scripted Bond that might have been.

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June 9th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

It is a secret the Chinese government has been keeping for forty years. They have proven the existence of dragons—a landmark discovery no one could ever believe is real, and a scientific revelation that will amaze the world. Now the Chinese are ready to unveil their astonishing findings within the greatest zoo ever constructed.

A small group of VIPs and journalists has been brought to the zoo deep within China to see these fabulous creatures for the first time. Among them is Dr. Cassandra Jane “CJ” Cameron, a writer for National Geographic and an expert on reptiles. The visitors are assured by their Chinese hosts that they will be struck with wonder at these beasts, that the dragons are perfectly safe, and that nothing can go wrong.

Of course it can’t…

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June 2nd, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

Bare-Faced Messiah tells the extraordinary story of L. Ron Hubbard, a penniless science-fiction writer who founded the Church of Scientology, became a millionaire prophet and convinced his adoring followers that he alone could save the world. In the words of his ‘official’ biography, Hubbard was an explorer, engineer, scientist, war hero and philosopher. In the words of a Californian judge, he was schizophrenic, paranoid and a pathological liar. What is not in dispute is that Hubbard was one of the most bizarre characters of the twentieth century. His was a unique life. While writing pulp science fiction, he claimed to have made discoveries about the workings of the human mind that would enable cures to be found for everything from cancer to the common cold. He soon founded his own ‘church’ and then rampaged around the world variously pursued by the CIA, the FBI and outraged governments. For nearly ten years he sailed the oceans as the commodore of his own private navy, served by nymphet messengers in hot-pants who dressed and undressed him and were trained like robots to relay orders in his tone of voice. Back on shore in the US, he directed an operation aimed at infiltrating government offices to launder their bulging files on the Church of Scientology. In 1980, fearing arrest, he disappeared. He was never seen again. Bare-Faced Messiah exposes the myths surrounding the fascinating and mysterious founder of the Church of Scientology and provides the definitive account of how the notorious organisation was created. Using all his skills as a top investigative journalist, Russell Miller reveals that the true life of L. Ron Hubbard – a man of hypnotic charm and limitless imagination – was even more astounding than the fiction.

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May 26th, 2017 by Michael Sauers

From Amazon.com:

In 1950, Senator Joseph McCarthy declared that the State Department was a haven for communists and traitors. Among famous targets, like Alger Hiss, the senator also named librarian Mary Jane Keeney and her husband Philip, who had been called before the House UnAmerican Activities Committee to account for friendships with suspected communists, memberships in communist fronts, and authorship of articles that had been published in leftist periodicals. Conservative journalists and politicians had seized the occasion to denounce the pair as communist sympathizers and spies for the Soviet Union. If the accusations were true, the Keeneys had provided the Soviets with classified information about American defense and economic policies that could alter the balance of power between those rival nations. If false, the Keeneys had been shamefully wronged by their own government, for the accusations tumbled them into grief and poverty.

In 1950, Senator Joseph McCarthy declared that the State Department was a haven for communists and traitors. Among famous targets, like Alger Hiss, the senator also named librarian Mary Jane Keeney and her husband Philip, who had been called before The House UnAmerican Activities Committee to account for friendships with suspected communists, memberships in communist fronts, and authorship of articles that had been published in leftist periodicals. Conservative journalists and politicians had seized the occasion to denounce the pair as communist sympathizers and spies for the Soviet Union. If the accusations were true, the Keeneys had provided the Soviets with classified information about American defense and economic policies that could alter the balance of power between those rival nations. If false, the Keeneys had been shamefully wronged by their own government, for the accusations tumbled them into grief and poverty.

This book draws on a wide range of archival materials, especialy FBI files, interviews, and extensive reading from secondary sources to tell the story of Philip Olin Keeney and his wife Mary Jane, who became part of the famed Silvermaster Spy Ring in the 1940s. It paints a picture of two ordinary people who took an extraordinary path in life and, while they were never charged and tried as spies, were punished through blacklisting. It also reaveals the means by which the FBI investigated suspected spies through black bag jobs, phone tapping, and mail interceptions. Spies compromise national security by stealing secrets, but secrets can be defined to suit individual political designs and ambitions. Philip and Mary Jane Keeney constantly tested the boundaries of free access to information – to the point of risking disloyalty to their country – but the American government responded in a manner that risked its democratic foundations.

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