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100 Killer Thrillers

book coverA recent NPR poll sorted through more than 17,000 ballots and 600 nominated novels for their list the Top 100 Killer Thrillers!

I won't tell you what book was at #1 (the cover I used isn't a spoiler). I will tell you that Stieg Larsson has three titles on the list, as does Dennis Lehane and Michael Crichton. But the author with the most titles on the list, with six, is Steven King.

Beat the Reaper


In Beat the Reaper, we meet Peter Brown, an intern at a bad New York hospital. He came to his medical career via a different path than most doctors. Peter's path took him through the Witness Relocation Program. So he works saving lives, to make up for all the lives he took when he was a mafia hitman.

Free Romance ebooks from Harlequin

For Romance readers, here is an interesting offer. Harlequin Romance is offering free downloadable books. These ebooks (not audiobooks) come in PDF format, so you can read them on your computer, and some ebook readers. (Not the iPad, though!)

It isn't widely known, but Romance readers were on the forefront of the ebook revolution, way before the Kindle, etc. Especially those who went on vacation: It is easier to carry a small ebook reader crammed full of ebooks than a totebag full of beach reads.

There are 16 titles to choose from, in 5 subcategories.

A guide to the Birds of East Africa

{{9780547152585}} Judge it by its cover and you may be right about the East African birds being an important part of this book. Judge it by its title and you would be totally wrong! It is not a field guide to the birds but a sweet little love story and then some! Rose Mbikwa leads the weekly bird walk in Nairobi. A reserved, middle-aged widower by the name of Mr. Malik has a crush on her. Flashy and flamboyant Mr. Khan is his rival for her attention. That’s where the birds come in! Both of these gentlemen agree to a competition to identify the most number of bird species. The winner will have a chance to dance with Rose Mbikwa at a prestigious club. Mr. Khan has a lot of resources to help him with the race. Honorable and honest Mr. Malik on the other hand, has a secret personality up his sleeves!

Privacy and ebooks

For all of the talk about ebook readers like the Amazon Kindle and the Sony Reader, you don't see a lot of information about personal privacy with regard to ebooks.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) -- an organization committed to defending free speech, privacy, and consumer rights -- has put together "An Ebook Buyer's Guide to Privacy". In this guide, you can out whether Amazon can monitor what you read on the Kindle (yes, they can), and with whom companies can share your information.

The Cathedral of the Black Madonna: the Druids and the Mystery of Chartres

{{9781594770203}}In his book, The Cathedral of the Black Madonna: the Druids and the Mystery of Chartres (282.445124 M345C), author, Jean Markale makes the point that there is such a thing as sacred space and that the ground on which the Cathedral of Chartres is built is an example. He traces the history of the Cathedral, through many renovations, noting its architectural and artistic character--and then delves into the time before the Cathedral to describe the spiritual activity and character of the space then. He describes the similarities between images of the Virgin Mary, to whom the cathedral is dedicated (including her depiction as the Black Madonna), and those of the ancient Mother Goddesses of the area and goes further to compare the enigmatic draw and feel of the area, that has made it a center of religious activity from primeval times to the present. Using allusions to his own life, he suggests the importance of the image of mother, the archetype of the divine feminine, in our psychological and spiritual lives.

Fractal Time: the Secret of 2012 and a New World Age

{{9781401920647}}In the book, Fractal Time: the Secret of 2012 and a New World Age (299.93 B798F), author Gregg Braden suggests that what the Ancient Mayans were pointing to in their inscriptions is a mathematical foundation to the universe. He believes that his studies of the Mayan texts have led him to identify the formula that will enable us to predict when the conditions will be right for "History to Repeat Itself". For example, when will the same conditions that existed on September 11, 2001, exist again? The formula can also be used to determine the character of the present time, by identifying a time in the past when the same forces were at work. By assessing what we know happened then, we can understand what is happening now and either prepare for it, or try to avert it. These formulas can be used to predict events in our personal lives just as well as those on the global stage. So you can learn when you are likely to fall in love again, become horribly depressed or feel the need to change careers. Check out the author's website for a quick introduction to his theories and to use his calculators.

A Unique Take on Wife Swapping!

{{9781410420008}} The Pretend Wife by Bridget Asher When Gwen Merchant reunites with her old college boyfriend in an ice cream shop, she can't ignore the unsettling self-doubts suddenly surfacing about the state of her seemingly happy marriage. Elliot Hull is everything Gwen's self-contained, stuffy husband is not, like passionate, sensitive, and penetrating. He seems to be able to look into her very soul, which has Gwen running for cover. When it's proposed that she pretend to be Elliot's wife for a weekend to spare his dying mother heartache, she reluctantly agrees to the setup which surprising begins a journey into her own heart. Written with humor and poignant insight, this novel will surely please contemporary romance fans. By the author of My Husband's Sweethearts.

A Final Journey


This is a delightful novel of two old people on their final trip. John & Ella Robina have shared a wonderful life for more than fifty years. Now in their eighties, Ella suffers from cancer and has stopped taking the treatments. Instead, she is popping pain pills. is a new Website for The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. With author webcasts; resources for kids, teens and adults; and booklists, the site is an excellent resource for exploration of literature.

The site features The Exquisite Corpse Adventure, a progressive story game, in which the plot is passed along a number of our country's great storytellers. The first episode was written by Jon Scieszka, the National Ambassador for Young People's Literature. You can subscribe to the adventure via an RSS feed. The story will come to an end about a year from now.