True Tales of American Life
A collection of 180 stories chosen by Paul Auster from four thousand submitted to his radio programme. The stories are all true and the writers never <more...> previously published. The result is a richly varied portrait of the American people in the 20th century.
A Long Way Gone
In the more than 50 conflicts going on worldwide, it is estimated that there are some 300,000 child soldiers. Ishmael Beah used to be one of them. In <more...>a rare and mesmerizing account, Beah tells of his experience as a child fighting a war in Sierra Leone.
Constance's mother systematically abused her daughter, both physically and emotionally, throughout her childhood. Regularly beaten and starved, the gi <more...>rl was so desperate she took herself off to Social Services and tried to get taken into care. When that failed, she swallowed bleach 'because it kills all known germs and my mother always told me I was a germ'. When Constance was thirteen, her mother simply moved out, leaving her daughter to fend for herself: there was no gas, no electricity and no food. But somehow Constance found the courage to survive her terrible start in life.
A Safe Place
Lorenza Carcaterra grew up in Hell's Kitchen, New York in the 1950s and '60s in a confusing world of love and fear of his paradoxically violent and af <more...>fectionate father. Then Lorenzo learned that his father had murdered his first wife. And he wondered how he could love his father again. Did he possess the same murderous fury; would he someday suddenly lash out at those he loved? As his father's physical abuse escalated, Lorenzo sought frantically for a safe place...a place where he could find hope and reconciliation and peace, where his father's terrible shadow no longer lingered. Now, decades later, Lorenzo has finally come to terms with the awful truth about his father.
movie tie-ins - non-fiction
The true story of a group of four boys brought up in New York's notorious Mafia-run "Hell's Kitchen" during the 1960s. After nearly causing a man's de <more...>ath, they were sent to a reformatory where guards routinely brutalized them, leaving them with nothing but an undying loyalty to one another.
Blending the intimacy of memoir and the panoramic sweep of eyewitness history, Wild Swans has become a bestselling classic in thirty languages, with m <more...>ore than ten million copies sold. The story of three generations in twentieth-century China, it is an engrossing record of Mao's impact on China, an unusual window on the female experience in the modern world, and an inspiring tale of courage and love. Jung Chang describes the life of her grandmother, a warlord's concubine; her mother's struggles as a young idealistic Communist; and her parents' experience as members of the Communist elite and their ordeal during the Cultural Revolution. Chang was a Red Guard briefly at the age of fourteen, then worked as a peasant, a "barefoot doctor," a steelworker, and an electrician. As the story of each generation unfolds, Chang captures in gripping, moving, and ultimately uplifting, detail the cycles of violent drama visited on her own family and millions of others caught in the whirlwind of history.
movie tie-ins - non-fiction
Henri Charrière, called "Papillon" for the butterfly tattoo on his chest, was convicted in Paris in 1931 of a murder he did not commit. Sentenced to <more...>life imprisonment in the penal colony of French Guiana, he became obsessedwith one goal: escape. After planning and executing a series of treacherous yet failed attempts over many years, he was eventually sent to the notorious prison, Devil's Island, a place from which no one had ever escaped...until Papillon. His flight to freedom remains one of the most incredible feats of human cunning, will, and endurance ever undertaken.
The Girl on the Picture
The world will never forget the 1972 Pulitizer Prize-winning photograph of nine-year-old Kim Phuc, running naked in terror after a napalm strike in Vi <more...>etnam. Denise Chong now presents the timely and sensitive story of the "napalm girl" as she struggles to reclaim her life.
The "Desert Flower" started life as one of 12 children of a Somali nomad family, a people with no written culture, where the basic unit of currency is <more...> the camel. Faced at 12 with the prospect of marriage to a 60-year-old man she didn't know, she broke all the rules and ran away, surviving a traumatic trek across the desert to end up in London, as a maid to the Somalian Ambassador. It was in McDonalds that her striking beauty was "discovered", leading to a career in modelling and another as an ardent campaigner against female genital mutilation (circumcision).
Gorillas in The Mist
movie tie-ins - non-fiction
One of the most important books ever written about our connection to the natural world, GORILLAS IN THE MIST is the riveting account of Dian Fossey's <more...>thirteen years in a remote African rain forest with the greatest of the great apes. Fossey's extraordinary efforts to ensure the future of the rain forest and its remaining mountain gorillas are captured in her own words and in candid photographs of this fascinating endangered species. As only she could, Fossey combined her personal adventure story with groundbreaking scientific reporting in an unforgettable portrait of one of our closest primate relatives. Although Fossey's work ended tragically in her murder, GORILLAS IN THE MIST remains an invaluable testament to one of the longest-running field studies of primates and reveals her undying passion for her subject.