Non-fiction

The Birds of Pandemonium

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The Birds of Pandemonium Cover Image
$24.95
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ISBN: 9781616201364
Published: Algonquin Books - October 7th, 2014

A backyard filled with 350 endangered birds?  Pandemonium Aviaries began eighteen years ago with the rescue of one bird and has since grown into a recognized breeding facility for threaten species of New Guinea. Owner Michele Raffin has since become a certified aviculturist and a consultant to zoo and other breeders. And yes, all in her backyard.

Robin


Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant

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Can't We Talk about Something More Pleasant?: A Memoir Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9781608198061
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Bloomsbury USA - May 6th, 2014

This graphic novel provides a first-hand look at the awkward initial conversations with aging parents about disability, assisted living, and death and takes the reader through the struggle to come to terms with the parent-child relationship after the parents are gone. While the specifics of Chast’s story are personal, the journey is universal, and the overall feeling from reading Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant is that of having a good friend nearby during this difficult time of life.

Porter Square Book Club


Serving Victoria

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Serving Victoria: Life in the Royal Household Cover Image
$17.99
ISBN: 9780062269928
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Harper Perennial - April 22nd, 2014

From equerries and ladies-in-waiting to grooms and scullery maids, it took thousands of people to keep Queen Victoria's palaces running. Most kept quiet about royal secrets during Victoria's reign, but their letters and diaries reveal everything from the mundane to the scandalous.Sarah


Testament of Youth

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Testament of Youth Cover Image
By Vera Brittain, Mark Bostridge (Introduction by), Shirley Williams (Preface by)
$22.00
ISBN: 9780143039235
Availability: Available at Wholesaler
Published: Penguin Classics - May 31st, 2005

One of the most heartrending and “romantic” memoirs of World War I. Testament of Youth is a classic, first published in 1933, among the literature of  the Great War, in its description of the impact of the war on women and the middle class. The unimaginable loss and sacrifice of a generation is rendered  beautifully through Brittain’s words. Her experiences as a volunteer nurse (VAD) in the armed services, a university student before and after the war, and a  tireless advocate for peace and feminist causes make this a defining and timeless work. A film version of Brittain’s work releases in the UK  in 2015.

Ellen


Nightingales

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Nightingales: The Extraordinary Upbringing and Curious Life of Miss Florence Nightingale Cover Image
$20.00
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ISBN: 9780345451880
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - September 13th, 2005

Gill goes beyond a simple biography of Florence Nightingale to take in the whole extended family, part of the wealthy community of reformers that drove England in the 19th century. The story itself is great, but if you're a fan of detail, read to the end: the notes are almost better than the narrative.

Sarah


The Pilot and the Little Prince

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The Pilot and the Little Prince: The Life of Antoine de Saint-Exupéry Cover Image
By Peter Sís, Peter Sís (Illustrator)
$18.99
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ISBN: 9780374380694
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) - May 27th, 2014

This is a perfect example of a picture book that is appropriate for older readers. Peter Sis tells the story of the life of Antoine de Saint-Exupery, both in extraordinary pictures, and text. Get comfortable and spend time with this incredibly interesting book about an incredibly interesting person. You won’t be sorry.

Carol


The Zhivago Affair

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The Zhivago Affair: The Kremlin, the CIA, and the Battle Over a Forbidden Book Cover Image
$26.95
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ISBN: 9780307908001
Published: Pantheon Books - June 17th, 2014

The Zhivago Affair brings to light the involvement of the CIA in the distribution of Pasternak’s epic novel in the USSR which had banned its publication, an involvement which would likely have profoundly disturbed Pasternak had he known about it. But this book tells us much more than just that episode of Doctor Zhivago’s history. It’s really a fuller biographical portrait of the Nobel Prize winning author and a fascinating history of the writing and publication of this his most renowned work undertaken during Stalin’s repressive regime.

Dale


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