Sue Fleming

Prisoners of Geography by Tim Marshall

Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Explain Everything About the World (Politics of Place #1) By Tim Marshall Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9781501121463
Availability: Not on our shelves currently | available to order
Published: Scribner - October 27th, 2015

Marshall has used his experience as a war correspondent and leading authority on foreign affairs to produce a most marvelous and timely collection of maps of ten critical countries, regions and continents. His description of the natural geologic boundaries of the continents and how they have either safeguarded people or left them unprotected, and how leaders used them in strategic ways is fascinating. This geopolitical landscape helps one to recognize current events and why decisions are made. I can’t leave it alone and keep referring back to it to help explain the news of the day. It will rest on my bookshelf next to Guns, Germs and Steel and Why Nations Fail. – Sue Fleming

Other Books Mentioned in This Piece: 
Guns, Germs, and Steel: The Fates of Human Societies By Jared Diamond Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780393317558
Availability: Out of Print
Published: W. W. Norton & Company - April 17th, 1999

Why Nations Fail: The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty By Daron Acemoglu, James A. Robinson Cover Image
$22.00
ISBN: 9780307719225
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Published: Crown Currency - September 17th, 2013

The Shift by Theresa Brown

Brown, a New York Times columnist and practicing registered nurse, takes us on her 12-hour dayshift on the hematology/oncology ward in a busy Pittsburgh teaching hospital.  Her patients:  Mr. Hampton, who suffers from lymphoma and for whom Brown is charged with administering a drug that could either kill or cure him; Sheila, who may have been dangerously misdiagnosed; Candace, a returning patient whose paranoia leads her to bring disinfectants for all room surfaces; and Dorothy, who has myeloblastic leukemia and is awaiting a positive blood count so she can go home. Brown had previously earned a PhD in English and was teaching at Tufts University when she announced to her husband she wanted to go back to school to become a nurse.  She has given us an authentic look at a nurses’ duties, their relationships with various hospital staff and their overwhelming responsibilities. I would urge anyone interested in a health care profession to read this excellent one-day memoir. – Sue Fleming

The Orpheus Clock by Simon Goodman

For those fascinated with Edsel’s Monuments Men, Simon Goodman presents a dramatic story of his family’s loss of precious art, first to Hitler and then, once it was recovered by Allied Forces, to European governments. Simon grew up in London with only a vague knowledge of his grandparents, who had come from German-Jewish banking dynasties and had perished in concentration camps—or of their fabulous collection of works by Degas, Renoir, Botticelli, Guardi, among others. Nor was he aware of the subsequent efforts to locate the missing art—until receiving some old papers following his father’s death. Over 20 years, Simon, with the help of his family, initiated the first Nazi looting case to be settled in the U.S. They also brought about the first major restitution in the Netherlands since the post-war era. An unforgettable read. – Sue Fleming

Other Books Mentioned in This Piece: 
The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History By Robert M. Edsel, Bret Witter (With) Cover Image
$21.99
ISBN: 9781599951508
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Published: Center Street - September 17th, 2010

We Never Asked for Wings by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

This novel, Diffenbaugh’s second after her popular Language of Flowers, is deserving of praise as well. Letty, unmarried mother of two and daughter of Mexican parents, is living in a poor section of town by the San Francisco airport while her mother has returned to Mexico to join her father in their ancestral home. Angry, fearful and inadequate, Letty struggles to find her place with the two children—Alex, scientifically gifted at 15 years old, and vivacious, 6-year-old Luna—both of whom had initially been given to their grandmother to raise while Letty continued her life. Now the opportunities and challenges they all face include escaping to a safer neighborhood and better schools, working to free a loved friend from immigration services, and deciding how to form a family for the first time. – Sue Fleming

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The Language of Flowers: A Novel By Vanessa Diffenbaugh Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780345525550
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Ballantine Books - April 3rd, 2012

Above the Waterfall by Ron Rash

Above the Waterfall: A Novel By Ron Rash Cover Image
$26.99
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ISBN: 9780062349316
Published: Ecco - September 8th, 2015

Rash fans, take note: Another great read set in small town Appalachia, lyrical, as much poetry as prose.  Les, a soon-to-be-retired county sheriff, Becky his friend who was a survivor (sort of) of a school shooting as a child, C.J. the kid everyone bullied but who probably saved Les’s life, and various other characters provide a story of contemporary evil and long-sought-for redemption.  Ron Rash never disappoints. – Sue Fleming

Jimmy Bluefeather by Kim Heacox

Jimmy Bluefeather By Kim Heacox Cover Image
$26.99
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ISBN: 9781941821688
Published: Alaska Northwest Books - September 1st, 2015

Jimmy’s grandfather, Keb Wisting, one of 10 remaining Alaskan natives whose first language is Tlingit, is ready to die. No one knows for sure, but he must be at least 100 years old. Jimmy, a talented high school basketball player and a shoo-in for the NBA, has suffered a terrible logging accident and will never play again. He’s convinced his so-called accident was actually not accidental and yearns for revenge. Old Keb is determined to lead Jimmy along a path that will take him back to his ancestors, teaching him the healing ways of carving a very unique canoe and returning with him to Keb’s birthplace, an area now in conflict with both the U.S. government and corporate interests. An excellent portrayal of native Alaskans, this has been likened to a wonderful blend of Mark Twain’s The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and John Nichol’s The Milagro Beanfield War, with dashes of John Steinbeck thrown in. – Sue Fleming

Other Books Mentioned in This Piece: 
Adventures of Huckleberry Finn By Mark Twain, Azar Nafisi (Foreword by), R. Kent Rasmussen (Introduction by), R. Kent Rasmussen (Notes by) Cover Image
By Mark Twain, Azar Nafisi (Foreword by), R. Kent Rasmussen (Introduction by), R. Kent Rasmussen (Notes by)
$8.00
ISBN: 9780143107323
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Penguin Classics - October 28th, 2014

The Milagro Beanfield War: A Novel (The New Mexico Trilogy #1) By John Nichols Cover Image
$23.99
ISBN: 9780805063745
Availability: Not on our shelves currently | available to order
Published: Holt Paperbacks - February 15th, 2000