NPR Bestsellers: Paperback Fiction, Week Of August 21, 2014At No. 13, James McBride's The Good Lord Bird tells the story of a young slave who is liberated by John Brown just before his raid on Harpers Ferry.
After a woman disappears on her fifth wedding anniversary, her diary reveals hidden turmoil in her marriage. Her husband is desperate to clear himself of suspicion and soon discovers that the truth about what happened is even more disturbing than murder.
Close to aging out of the foster care system, Penobscot Indian Molly Ayer takes a community service position helping an elderly woman named Vivian clean out her home. Molly discovers that she and Vivian are more alike than different as she helps Vivian solve a mystery from her past.
Violet Minturn, a half-Chinese, half-American courtesan who deals in seduction and illusion in Shanghai, struggles to find her place in the world. Her mother, Lucia, tries to make sense of the choices she has made and the men who have shaped her.
When otherworldly beings are set loose on the world, they threaten the life of a little boy. But the extraordinary Hempstock women — Lettie, her mother and her grandmother — summon all of their courage and cleverness to keep him alive. Soon they discover that his survival comes with a high and deadly price.
A socially awkward genetics professor who has never been on a second date sets out to find the perfect wife. He instead finds Rosie Jarman, a fiercely independent barmaid who is on a quest to find her biological father.
Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love as students in Nigeria, when the country is under military rule and those with the means to leave the country do. Ifemelu goes to America to study and prospers there. But Obinze can't get into to America and winds up living in London under assumed names. When they're reunited in their homeland 15 years later, they face the toughest decisions of their lives.
Abandoned by their artist mother at the age of 12, Bean and her older sister, Liz, are sent to live in the decaying antebellum mansion of their widowed uncle. There they learn the truth about their parents and take odd jobs to earn extra money before an increasingly withdrawn Liz has a life-shattering experience.
Subhash and Udayan are brothers, and to say that they're close doesn't begin to describe their relationship. But their lives follow very different paths as Udayan marries young and becomes a radical in India's Communist Naxalite movement, while Subhash leaves his home country for school in Rhode Island.
Louisa's ordinary life changes when she takes a job working for the wheelchair-bound Will, who is no longer able to live a life of extreme sports and worldwide travel. Will is he cannot go on the way he is, but Louisa sets out to show him that life is still worth living. Soon, his happiness means more to her than she expected.
Henry is a young slave living in the mid-19th-century Kansas Territory whose life takes a major turn when he meets the legendary abolitionist John Brown — who mistakes Henry for a girl. Henry continues to hide his true identity for his own safety as he travels with Brown's militia, through the historic 1859 raid on Harpers Ferry.
Chief Inspector Armand Gamache quietly investigates the disappearance of a woman who was once one of most famous people in the world, and now goes unrecognized by virtually everyone except a mad, brilliant poet.
Working as a private investigator after losing his leg in Afghanistan, Cormoran Strike takes the case of a legendary supermodel's suspicious suicide and finds himself in a world of multimillionaire beauties, rock star boyfriends, desperate designers and hedonist pursuits. Author Robert Galbraith is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling.
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