The Books, 2012

Click the book jacket below to read more about that book. Voting for the next One Book opens soon. The winning book will be announced Sept. 14, 2012.

Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell Salvage the Bones by Jesmyn Ward The Snow Child by Eowyn Ivey Someone Knows My Name by Lawrence Hill Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand Unholy Night by Seth Grahame-Smith


 

Cloud AtlasA summary of Cloud Atlas from the publisher:

A reluctant voyager crossing the Pacific in 1850; a disinherited composer blagging a precarious livelihood in between-the-wars Belgium; a high-minded journalist in Governor Reagan’s California; a vanity publisher fleeing his gangland creditors; a genetically modified “dinery server” on death-row; and Zachry, a young Pacific Islander witnessing the nightfall of science and civilisation — the narrators of Cloud Atlas hear each other’s echoes down the corridor of history, and their destinies are changed in ways great and small.

In his captivating third novel, David Mitchell erases the boundaries of language, genre and time to offer a meditation on humanity’ s dangerous will to power, and where it may lead us.

Read the posts so far about “Cloud Atlas.

Find out more about the book and the author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review of the audiobook version: “‘Cloud Atlas’ by David Mitchell.”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

Salvage the BonesA summary of Salvage the Bones from the publisher:

A hurricane is building over the Gulf of Mexico, threatening the coastal town of Bois Sauvage, Mississippi, and Esch’s father is growing concerned. A hard drinker, largely absent, he doesn’t show concern for much else. Esch and her three brothers are stocking food, but there isn’t much to save. Lately, Esch can’t keep down what food she gets; she’s fourteen and pregnant. Her brother Skeetah is sneaking scraps for his prized pitbull’s new litter, dying one by one in the dirt. Meanwhile, brothers Randall and Junior try to stake their claim in a family long on child’s play and short on parenting.
As the twelve days that make up the novel’s framework yield to their dramatic conclusion, this unforgettable family-motherless children sacrificing for one another as they can, protecting and nurturing where love is scarce-pulls itself up to face another day. A big-hearted novel about familial love and community against all odds, and a wrenching look at the lonesome, brutal, and restrictive realities of rural poverty, Salvage the Bones is muscled with poetry, revelatory, and real.

Read the posts so far about “Salvage the Bones.

Find out more about the book and author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review of the audiobook version: “‘Salvage the Bones’ brings Katrina horror into sharp focus.”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

Snow ChildA summary of The Snow Child from the publisher:

Alaska, 1920: a brutal place to homestead, and especially tough for recent arrivals Jack and Mabel. Childless, they are drifting apart–he breaking under the weight of the work of the farm; she crumbling from loneliness and despair. In a moment of levity during the season’s first snowfall, they build a child out of snow. The next morning the snow child is gone–but they glimpse a young, blonde-haired girl running through the trees.

This little girl, who calls herself Faina, seems to be a child of the woods. She hunts with a red fox at her side, skims lightly across the snow, and somehow survives alone in the Alaskan wilderness. As Jack and Mabel struggle to understand this child who could have stepped from the pages of a fairy tale, they come to love her as their own daughter. But in this beautiful, violent place things are rarely as they appear, and what they eventually learn about Faina will transform all of them.

Read the posts so far about “The Snow Child.

Find out more about the book and author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review of the audiobook version: “‘The Snow Child’ by Eowyn Ivey is a magical tale.”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

Someone Knows My NameA summary of Someone Knows My Name from the publisher:

Abducted from Africa as a child and enslaved in South Carolina, Aminata Diallo thinks only of freedom-and of the knowledge she needs to get home. Sold to an indigo trader who recognizes her intelligence, Aminata is torn from her husband and child and thrown into the chaos of the Revolutionary War. In Manhattan, Aminata helps pen the ‘Book of Negroes,’ a list of blacks rewarded for service to the king with safe passage to Nova Scotia. There Aminata finds a life of hardship and stinging prejudice. When the British abolitionists come looking for “adventurers” to create a new colony in Sierra Leone, Aminata assists in moving 1,200 Nova Scotians to Africa and aiding the abolitionist cause by revealing the realities of slavery to the British public. This captivating story of one woman’s remarkable experience spans six decades and three continents and brings to life a crucial chapter in world history.

Read the posts so far about “Someone Knows My Name.

Find out more about the book and author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review of the audiobook version: “‘Someone Knows My Name’ by Lawrence Hill.”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

UnbrokenA summary of Unbroken from the publisher:

On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood. Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared. It was that of a young lieutenant, the plane’s bombardier, who was struggling to a life raft and pulling himself aboard. So began one of the most extraordinary odysseys of the Second World War.

The lieutenant’s name was Louis Zamperini. In boyhood, he’d been a cunning and incorrigible delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and fleeing his home to ride the rails. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics and within sight of the four-minute mile. But when war had come, the athlete had become an airman, embarking on a journey that led to his doomed flight, a tiny raft, and a drift into the unknown.

Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.

In her long-awaited new book, Laura Hillenbrand writes with the same rich and vivid narrative voice she displayed in Seabiscuit. Telling an unforgettable story of a man’s journey into extremity, Unbroken is a testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit.

Find out about the book and the author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review: “‘Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience and Redemption.’”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

UnholyA summary of Unholy Night from the publisher:

From the author of the New York Times bestselling ‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter,’ comes ‘Unholy Night,’ the next evolution in dark historical revisionism.

They’re an iconic part of history’s most celebrated birth. But what do we really know about the Three Kings of the Nativity, besides the fact that they followed a star to Bethlehem bearing strange gifts? The Bible has little to say about this enigmatic trio. But leave it to Seth Grahame-Smith, the brilliant and twisted mind behind ‘Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter’ and ‘Pride and Prejudice and Zombies’ to take a little mystery, bend a little history, and weave an epic tale.

In Grahame-Smith’s telling, the so-called “Three Wise Men” are infamous thieves, led by the dark, murderous Balthazar. After a daring escape from Herod’s prison, they stumble upon the famous manger and its newborn king. The last thing Balthazar needs is to be slowed down by young Joseph, Mary and their infant. But when Herod’s men begin to slaughter the first born in Judea, he has no choice but to help them escape to Egypt.

It’s the beginning of an adventure that will see them fight the last magical creatures of the Old Testament; cross paths with biblical figures like Pontius Pilate and John the Baptist; and finally deliver them to Egypt. It may just be the greatest story never told.

Find out about the book and author.

Read the Herald-Tribune’s Susan Rife’s review of the audiobook version: “‘Unholy Night’ a literary-biblical mashup.”

Check the book out from your local Sarasota County Library.


 

A list of all the books is available in the Sarasota County Library’s catalog: “One Book 2012 Candidates.”

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