Nov. 4-10: 'On The Map,' Beneath The Big Top And In Detroit

Life After Life

by Jill McCorkle

Paperback, 368 pages, Workman Pub Co, $14.95, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
Life After Life
Author
Jill McCorkle

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A woman who moves from Boston to be near the grave of her lover; the widow of a judge who keeps a scrapbook of murder and crime; an 85-year-old who has always seen the sunnier side of life; an old man feigning dementia. These are the residents of Pine Haven retirement center. Author Jill McCorkle balances humor and sorrow as her characters, together and separately, face the ends of their lives.

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Going Clear

Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief

by Lawrence Wright

Paperback, 538 pages, Random House Inc, $15.95, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
Going Clear
Subtitle
Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief
Author
Lawrence Wright

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Pulitzer Prize-winning writer Lawrence Wright draws from more than 200 interviews with current and former Scientologists to present a look inside the world of Scientology and the life of its founder, L. Ron Hubbard, who died in 1986. He examines the group's special cosmology, uncovers its outsized efforts to attract members from Hollywood and considers a difficult question: What makes a belief system a religion?

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Days That I'll Remember

Spending Time With John Lennon and Yoko Ono

by Jonathan Cott

Paperback, 242 pages, Random House Inc, $16.95, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
Days That I'll Remember
Subtitle
Spending Time With John Lennon and Yoko Ono
Author
Jonathan Cott

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When Jonathan Cott and John Lennon met in 1968, it was the beginning of a friendship that would span more than two decades. Cott's new book chronicles his years in Lennon and Yoko Ono's company.

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The Ordinary Acrobat

A Journey into the Wondrous World of the Circus, Past and Present

by Duncan Wall

Paperback, 322 pages, Random House Inc, $16.95, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
The Ordinary Acrobat
Subtitle
A Journey into the Wondrous World of the Circus, Past and Present
Author
Duncan Wall

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Duncan Wall recounts his novice plunge into the abstract and intensely competitive world of the contemporary circus. To the stories of his own experience, Wall adds a history of circus performance in general, including his commentary on its current resurgence in popularity with acts like Cirque du Soleil.

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Detroit City Is the Place to Be

The Afterlife of an American Metropolis

by Mark Binelli

Paperback, 326 pages, St Martins Pr, $16, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
Detroit City Is the Place to Be
Subtitle
The Afterlife of an American Metropolis
Author
Mark Binelli

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Mark Binelli grew up in a Detroit suburb in the 1970s. The city used to embody the American dream — the auto industry, consumer culture, Motown — but the Detroit he knew was a study in decline. When Binelli was offered a magazine assignment to write about the Detroit auto show in January 2009, he jumped on it. But he didn't stop there. He moved back to his hometown to chronicle the city, tracing Detroit's demise and recovery efforts while evaluating plans to transform it into a viable, desegregated and economically diverse post-industrial region.

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On The Map

A Mind-Expanding Exploration Of The Way The World Looks

by Simon Garfield

Paperback, 464 pages, Penguin Group USA, $17, published November 5 2013 | purchase

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Title
On The Map
Subtitle
A Mind-Expanding Exploration Of The Way The World Looks
Author
Simon Garfield

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Journalist Simon Garfield takes us from the earliest maps — scratchings on rocks dating back over 10,000 years — through medieval European maps — with Jerusalem always in the middle — right up to the maps that guide us with voices from our smartphones and GPS trackers. All the while, he examines the pivotal relationship between mapping and civilization, demonstrating the unique ways that maps relate and realign history.

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*Some of the language in the summaries above has been provided by publishers.

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