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The Black Count

The Black Count

Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, And The Real Count Of Monte Cristo

by Tom Reiss

Paperback, 432 pages, Random House Inc, $16, published May 14 2013 | purchase
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  • The Black Count
  • Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, And The Real Count Of Monte Cristo
  • Tom Reiss

Gen. Thomas-Alexandre Dumas was one of the heroes of the French Revolution, leading armies of thousands in triumph through the snows of the Alps and the sands of Egypt. Today, he is almost forgotten, though he lives on in his son's stories. The son of a Haitian slave and a French nobleman, this mixed-race swordsman was the father of novelist Alexandre Dumas, and his adventures helped inspire The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers. Tom Reiss' biography of the elder Dumas explores the real-life adventures behind these classic novels.NPR Bestseller

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Double Cross

Double Cross

The True Story of the D-Day Spies

by Ben MacIntyre

Paperback, 399 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published May 14 2013 | purchase
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  • Double Cross
  • The True Story of the D-Day Spies
  • Ben MacIntyre

Early in 1944, American, British and Canadian soldiers gathered in Southern England and prepared to invade Nazi-occupied Europe. It was hard to hide the largest invasion force in history, so Great Britain instead tried to deceive the Germans into believing that the D-Day attacks would be anywhere but Normandy. As Ben MacIntyre explains, a sophisticated operation of deception began, in which extraordinary spies — including untrustworthy double agents, West End set designers and at least one pigeon handler — successfully fooled the Germans and saved thousands of lives.NPR Bestseller

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The Passage of Power

The Passage Of Power

The Years Of Lyndon Johnson

by Robert A. Caro

Paperback, 768 pages, Vintage, $18.95, published May 7 2013 | purchase
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  • The Passage Of Power
  • The Years Of Lyndon Johnson
  • Robert A. Caro

Robert Caro has spent decades researching Lyndon Johnson's life; previous books in his massive biography of Johnson told the story of Johnson's rise to national prominence. In this fourth volume, Caro takes up Johnson's dismal years as vice president and his sudden presidency, which he used to shepherd the 1964 Civil Rights Act through Congress.

NPR Bestseller

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Algerian Chronicles

Algerian Chronicles

by Albert Camus

Hardcover, 224 pages, Harvard Univ Pr, $21.95, published May 6 2013 | purchase
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  • Algerian Chronicles
  • Albert Camus

Author Albert Camus' agonized reflections on Algeria and the dead end of terrorism are gathered here in English for the first time. Translated by Arthur Goldhammer.

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The Guns at Last Light

The Guns At Last Light

The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945

by Rick Atkinson

Hardcover, 877 pages, Henry Holt & Co, $40, published May 14 2013 | purchase
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  • The Guns At Last Light
  • The War in Western Europe, 1944-1945
  • Rick Atkinson

The final volume of the World War II trilogy brings to life the Allies' brutal struggles in Normandy and at the Battle of the Bulge. It also illustrates the freeing of Paris as experienced by participants from every level of the military.NPR Bestseller

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The Savior Generals

The Savior Generals

How Five Great Commanders Saved Wars That Were Lost-From Ancient Greece to Iraq

by Victor Davis Hanson

Hardcover, 305 pages, St Martins Pr, $28, published May 14 2013 | purchase
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  • The Savior Generals
  • How Five Great Commanders Saved Wars That Were Lost-From Ancient Greece to Iraq
  • Victor Davis Hanson

Traces the stories of Themistocles, Belisarius, William Tecumseh Sherman, Matthew Ridgway, and David Petraeus, evaluating their pivotal military roles and the controversies that marked their careers.

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Looking for Leroy

Looking for Leroy

Illegible Black Masculinities

by Mark Anthony Neal

Paperback, 207 pages, New York Univ Pr, $22, published April 22 2013 | purchase
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  • Looking for Leroy
  • Illegible Black Masculinities
  • Mark Anthony Neal
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Why Does the World Exist?

Why Does The World Exist?

An Existential Detective Story

by Jim Holt

Paperback, 320 pages, W W Norton & Co Inc, $16.95, published April 8 2013 | purchase
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  • Why Does The World Exist?
  • An Existential Detective Story
  • Jim Holt

The search for the origins of the universe extends beyond God and the Big Bang theory; a philosopher explores the bizarre possibilities inspired by physicists, theologians, mathematicians and even novelists.NPR Bestseller

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Escape from Camp 14

Escape From Camp 14

One Man's Remarkable Odyssey From North Korea to Freedom in the West

by Blaine Harden

Paperback, 210 pages, Penguin Group USA, $15, published March 26 2013 | purchase
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  • Escape From Camp 14
  • One Man's Remarkable Odyssey From North Korea to Freedom in the West
  • Blaine Harden

Until his early 20s, the only life Shin Dong-hyuk had ever known was one of constant beatings, near starvation and snitching on others to survive. Born into one of the worst of North Korea's system of prison camps, Shin was doomed to a life of hard labor and an early death. But when he was 23, he managed to elude the guards and escape. Reporter Blaine Harden tells the tale of Shin's imprisonment and astounding getaway.NPR Bestseller

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Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace

Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace

The Private Diary Of A Victorian Lady

by Kate Summerscale

Paperback, 303 pages, St Martins Pr, $17, published May 21 2013 | purchase
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  • Mrs. Robinson's Disgrace
  • The Private Diary Of A Victorian Lady
  • Kate Summerscale

In 1858, Isabella Robinson's husband read her private diary in which she'd recorded her infatuation with another married man, including descriptions of what were either trysts or sexual fantasies. Mr. Robinson petitioned a divorce, which England had just made legal, on the grounds of adultery. Kate Summerscale traces the true story of the scandalous trial that ensued.

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Into the Abyss

Into the Abyss

An Extraordinary True Story

by Carol Shaben

Hardcover, 311 pages, Grand Central Pub, $25, published May 21 2013 | purchase
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  • Into the Abyss
  • An Extraordinary True Story
  • Carol Shaben

Four men, including the author's politician father, a pilot, a cop and a handcuffed criminal, fight to stay alive in the northern Alberta wilderness after surviving a commuter plane crash that killed six others.

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Religion Without God

by Ronald Dworkin

Hardcover, 176 pages, Harvard Univ Pr, $17.95, published October 1 2013 | purchase
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  • Religion Without God
  • Ronald Dworkin
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Cooked

Cooked

A Natural History of Transformation

by Michael Pollan

Hardcover, 468 pages, Penguin Group USA, $27.95, published April 23 2013 | purchase
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  • Cooked
  • A Natural History of Transformation
  • Michael Pollan

Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen. There, he discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements — fire, water, air and earth — to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. And he discovers that the cook occupies a special place in the world, standing squarely between nature and culture.NPR Bestseller

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Help, Thanks, Wow

Help, Thanks, Wow

The Three Essential Survival Prayers

by Anne Lamott

Hardcover, 102 pages, Penguin Group USA, $17.95, published November 13 2012 | purchase
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  • Help, Thanks, Wow
  • The Three Essential Survival Prayers
  • Anne Lamott

Help, Thanks, Wow describes the three simple prayers — asking for assistance from a higher power, expressing gratitude and feeling awe — that help to deal with the hardships of daily life.NPR Bestseller

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The Last of the Doughboys

The Last of the Doughboys

The Forgotten Generation and Their Forgotten World War

by Richard Rubin

Hardcover, 518 pages, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $28, published May 21 2013 | purchase
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  • The Last of the Doughboys
  • The Forgotten Generation and Their Forgotten World War
  • Richard Rubin

Richard Rubin presents interviews with the last remaining World War I veterans, aged 101 to 113, to paint a picture of a time and a generation that, despite memorials and history lessons, is quickly fading away.

News and Reviews
The Gateway Arch

The Gateway Arch

A Biography

by Tracy Campbell

Hardcover, 217 pages, Yale Univ Pr, $26, published May 28 2013 | purchase
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  • The Gateway Arch
  • A Biography
  • Tracy Campbell

A surprising history of the spectacular Gateway Arch in St. Louis details the competing agendas of its supporters and the mixed results of their ambitious plan.

News and Reviews
A Death in the Lucky Holiday Hotel

A Death in the Lucky Holiday Hotel

Murder, Money, and an Epic Power Struggle in China

by Pin Ho and Wenguang Huang

Hardcover, 334 pages, Perseus Books Group, $27.99, published April 2 2013 | purchase
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  • A Death in the Lucky Holiday Hotel
  • Murder, Money, and an Epic Power Struggle in China
  • Pin Ho and Wenguang Huang

Pin Ho and Wenguang Huang document the scandalous corruption of the Bo Xilai family while offering insight into its implications at the height of a transformational power shift in China. The writers draw on high-level sources and insider information to cover such topics as the murder of British businessman Neil Heywood, Bo's celebrity lovers and his wife's trial.

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Tubes

Tubes

A Journey To The Center Of The Internet

by Andrew Blum

Paperback, 294 pages, HarperCollins, $15.99, published May 28 2013 | purchase
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  • Tubes
  • A Journey To The Center Of The Internet
  • Andrew Blum

Journalist Andrew Blum journeys inside the Internet's physical infrastructure to uncover the buildings and compounds where our data are stored and transmitted. He explains how the Internet is not a single entity; instead, data centers, Internet exchange points and fiber-optic cables combine to form what most people take for granted as the "cloud." Along the way, Blum documents the spaces most vital to the Internet as we know it — from the room in L.A. where the Internet came to life to the buildings in the Pacific Northwest where Google, Microsoft and Facebook have built huge data centers.

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