Dec. 30- Jan. 5: Tsunami Survival, A Tokyo Diarist And The Vietnam War

A Tale for the Time Being

A Tale for the Time Being

by Ruth Ozeki

Paperback, 422 pages, Penguin Group USA, $16, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • A Tale for the Time Being
  • Ruth Ozeki

On the shores of British Columbia, a novelist discovers the diary of a 16-year-old girl named Nao. Nao spent her formative years in California, but her family has returned to Japan, and when the book begins, she's living in Tokyo. Nao tells readers right up front that her diary will be a log of her last few days on Earth: She plans to take her own life, and as the story goes on, readers learn why.

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Wave

Wave

by Sonali Deraniyagala

Paperback, 227 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • Wave
  • Sonali Deraniyagala

Sonali Deraniyagala lost her husband, parents and two young sons in the terrifying Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004. They had been vacationing on the southern coast of her home country, Sri Lanka, when the wave struck. Wave is her brutal but lyrically written account of the awful moment and the grief-crazed months after, as she learned to live with her almost unbearable losses — and allow herself to remember details of her previous life.

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Kill Anything That Moves

Kill Anything That Moves

The Real American War in Vietnam

by Nick Turse

Paperback, 376 pages, St Martins Pr, $17, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • Kill Anything That Moves
  • The Real American War in Vietnam
  • Nick Turse

On March 16, 1968, between 347 and 504 unarmed Vietnamese civilians were gunned down by members of the U.S. Army in what became known as the My Lai Massacre. The U.S. government has maintained that atrocities like this were isolated incidents, but Nick Turse argues that the intentional killing of civilians during the Vietnam War was quite common.

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The Lost Carving

The Lost Carving

A Journey to the Heart of Making

by David Esterly

Paperback, 279 pages, Penguin Group USA, $16, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • The Lost Carving
  • A Journey to the Heart of Making
  • David Esterly

David Esterly traces his path to becoming a forefront practitioner of Baroque artist Grinling Gibbons' forgotten woodcarving technique, including the year he spent re-creating a Gibbons piece that had been lost in a fire at the Hampton Court Palace outside London.

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The Secrets of Happy Families

The Secrets of Happy Families

Improve Your Mornings, Rethink Family Dinner, Fight Smarter, Go Out and Play, and Much More

by Bruce Feiler

Paperback, 308 pages, HarperCollins, $14.99, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • The Secrets of Happy Families
  • Improve Your Mornings, Rethink Family Dinner, Fight Smarter, Go Out and Play, and Much More
  • Bruce Feiler

Bruce Feiler and his wife have twin daughters, and every morning was a madcap rush to get everybody out the door on time. Feiler kept wondering if things could be better — easier, smoother, happier. So he set out on a mission to gather advice for how to build a stronger, happier and healthier family. The result is The Secrets of Happy Families, a collection of more than 200 strategies culled from conversations with, among others, business branding experts, sports coaches and even the team behind Modern Family.

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

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