Termination Shock

by Neal Stephenson

It’s just a few years from now. The
world is still debating climate change, but
the oceans are seizing the overheated
land, rife with pandemics. What if a few
superrich individuals decide to act alone,
to set off a worldwide geoengineering
event, creating uneven consequences for
different populations? What if their
actions are then suddenly terminated? A
slow but fascinating sci-fi preview of
future international battles over climate
change.

Cloud Cuckoo Land

by Anthony Doerr

In the first century BC, Antonius
Diogenes writes a text about a shepherd
from an ancient Greek play, seeking a
happy mythical land free from
suffering. Over the following ages, five
young people enduring war and loss
rediscover the text and librarians who
preserve it. That not only impacts their
lives, but causes their stories to
mysteriously intersect and then
converge. Thought-provoking themes
and characters.

Silverview

by John le Carré

Now that Julian has earned enough
to retire, he has opened a bookstore in
a small seaside town. One of his best
customers is Edward, who offers to set
up and operate an annex of literary
classics in Julian’s basement. But Julian
is unaware of a dangerous clandestine
past that seems to have prompted
British Domestic Security to start
investigating Edward with renewed
interest. What does Edward really want
to do downstairs?

Red Roulette

by Desmond Shum

China’s booming business world is
revealed in this startling book about the
author and his ex-wife’s ascent to wealth
by connecting to the few political family
oligarchs who control the network
(guanxi) that accesses all capitalist
ventures. The rise of Xi Jinping has
reconstituted and realigned that power
structure, and when powerful allies fall,
their business partners often fall with
them. A chilling look at doing business in
modern China.

The Book of Hope

by Jane Goodall & Douglas Abrams

To a world besieged by disheartening
daily headlines, the iconic naturalist
offers four reasons to remain hopeful for
humanity’s future: the human intellect,
nature’s resilience, the power of youth,
and the human spirit. All are examined
through deeply personal and empathetic
stories about her lifetime of travel and
encounters around the globe, told during
conversations with co-author Douglas
Abrams.

The Sinner and the Saint

by Kevin Birmingham

Ever wonder what prompts a great piece of literature?  For Dostoevsky’s classic, Crime and Punishment, it began with his fascination for a notorious French serial killer, Pierre François Lacenaire.  Their lives paralleled in their struggles to be successful writers and
time spent in prison. But Lacenaire’s life
took a much darker turn, while
Dostoevsky continued struggling with
epileptic seizures, creditors, and fickle
critics.