Posts Tagged ‘Tell-All’

Books Make Great Gifts: For The Nonconformist

December 21st, 2011

Attractive, smart, thoughtful, unique, and easy to wrap—books are definitely the perfect gifts. In honor of the holiday season, we’ve put together a series of thematic gift guides that will help you pick a great book for everyone on your list.

Your shopping is nearly done. Your gifts are nearly wrapped. You’re nearly ready to kick off your shoes and relax in front of the fireplace with a mug of hot cider. But there’s one person—one person!—left on your list. The most unusual, witty, and creative person you know. The person who’s hardest to shop for. We’ve got a solution: books. Our list will bring you one step closer to fireplace-and-hot-cider nirvana.

Don’t forget to check out our lists for The Literary Lover, The Mystery Maven, The History Buff, The Nonfiction Aficionado, and The Humorist. For more suggestions, check out Random House’s holiday gift guides.

By Chuck Palahniuk
For decades Hazie Coogan has tended to the outsized needs of Katherine “Miss Kathie” Kenton, veteran of multiple marriages, career comebacks, and cosmetic surgeries. But danger arrives with gentleman caller Webster Carlton Westward III, who worms his way into Miss Kathie’s heart—and boudoir. Soon, Hazie discovers that this bounder has already written a celebrity memoir foretelling Miss Kathie’s death in an upcoming musical extravaganza. As the body count mounts, Hazie must execute a plan to save Katherine Kenton for her fans and for posterity.
Read an Excerpt | Buy the Book

Imperial BedroomsImperial Bedrooms
By Bret Easton Ellis
Bret Easton Ellis delivers a riveting, tour-de-force sequel to Less Than Zero, one of the most singular novels of the last thirty years. Returning to Los Angeles from New York, Clay, now a successful screenwriter, is casting his new movie. Soon he is running with his old circle of friends through L.A.’s seedy side. His ex-girlfriend, Blair, is married to Trent, a bisexual philanderer and influential manager. Then there’s Julian, a recovering addict, and Rip, a former dealer. Then when Clay meets a gorgeous young actress who will stop at nothing to be in his movie, his own dark past begins to shine through, and he has no choice but to dive into the recesses of his character and come to terms with his proclivity for betrayal.
Read an Excerpt | Buy the Book

Machine ManMachine Man
By Max Barry
Scientist Charles Neumann loses a leg in an industrial accident. It’s not a tragedy. It’s an opportunity. Charlie always thought his body could be better. He begins to explore a few ideas. To build parts. Better parts. Prosthetist Lola Shanks loves a good artificial limb. In Charlie, she sees a man on his way to becoming artificial everything. But others see a madman. Or a product. Or a weapon. A story for the age of pervasive technology, Machine Man is a gruesomely funny unraveling of one man’s quest for ultimate self-improvement.
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Mr. PeanutMr. Peanut
By Adam Ross
David Pepin has been in love with his wife, Alice, since the moment they met in a university seminar on Alfred Hitchcock. After thirteen years of marriage, he still can’t imagine a remotely happy life without her—yet he obsessively contemplates her demise. Soon she is dead, and David is both deeply distraught and the prime suspect. Mesmerizing, exhilarating, and profoundly moving, Mr. Peanut is a police procedural of the soul, a poignant investigation of the relentlessly mysterious human heart—and a first novel of the highest order.
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How To Live Safely in a Science Fictional UniverseHow To Live Safely In a Science Fictional Universe
By Charles Yu
Every day in Minor Universe 31 people get into time machines and try to change the past. That’s where Charles Yu, time travel technician, steps in. He helps save people from themselves. Literally. When he’s not taking client calls, Yu visits his mother and searches for his father, who invented time travel and then vanished. The key to locating his father may be found in a book. It’s called How to Live Safely in a Science Fictional Universe, and somewhere inside it is information that will help him. It may even save his life.
Read an Excerpt | Buy the Book

You Are Not a GadgetYou Are Not a Gadget
By Jaron Lanier
A programmer, musician, and father of virtual reality technology, Jaron Lanier was a pioneer in digital media, and among the first to predict the revolutionary changes it would bring to our commerce and culture. Now, with the Web influencing virtually every aspect of our lives, he offers this provocative critique of how digital design is shaping society, for better and for worse. Informed by Lanier’s experience and expertise as a computer scientist, You Are Not a Gadget discusses the technical and cultural problems that have unwittingly risen from programming choices—such as the nature of user identity—that were “locked-in” at the birth of digital media and considers what a future based on current design philosophies will bring. With the proliferation of social networks, cloud-based data storage systems, and Web 2.0 designs that elevate the “wisdom” of mobs and computer algorithms over the intelligence and wisdom of individuals, his message has never been more urgent.
Read an Excerpt | Buy the Book

By Tom McCarthy
Opening in England at the turn of the twentieth century, C is the story of Serge Carrefax, whose father experiments with wireless communication while running a school for deaf children. Serge grows up amid the noise and silence with his brilliant but troubled older sister, Sophie: an intense sibling relationship that haunts him as he heads off into an equally troubled larger world. As Serge goes from a Bohemian spa to the skies of World War I, and from a German prison camp into the tombs of Egypt, we follow his life through the tumultuous course of the nascent modern era. Tom McCarthy—acclaimed author of Remainder—has created a truly singular character, and a world that sparkles with historical breadth and postmodern originality.
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Games to Play After DarkGames to Play After Dark
By Sarah Gardner Borden
Kate and Colin meet at a party in New York City and quickly embark on the rituals of courtship: they recount stories about their pasts, learn to accommodate each other’s quirks, and spend days (sometimes whole weekends) in bed. In thrall to Colin’s need for her and the sexual chemistry between them, Kate giddily accepts his marriage proposal. They move to Connecticut to be close to his work and eventually start a family. Kate adapts to the roles expected of her. She’s a conscientious mother, compliant wife, and works part-time to set a good example for her daughters. Engaged in the demands of day-to-day routines, Kate and Colin seem like any suburban couple. But the games they play after dark are far from routine.
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The CurfewThe Curfew
By Jesse Ball
William and Molly lead a life of small pleasures, riddles at the kitchen table, and games of string and orange peels. All around them a city rages with war. When the uprising began, William’s wife was taken, leaving him alone with their young daughter. They keep their heads down and try to remain unnoticed as police patrol the streets, enforcing a curfew and arresting citizens. But when an old friend seeks William out, claiming to know what happened to his wife, William must risk everything. He ventures out after dark, and young Molly is left to play, reconstructing his dangerous voyage, his past, and their future. An astounding portrait of fierce love within a world of random violence, The Curfew is a mesmerizing feat of literary imagination.
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The Big Book of Adventure StoriesThe Big Book of Adventure Stories
Edited by Otto Penzler
Everyone loves adventure, and Otto Penzler has collected the best adventure stories of all time into one mammoth volume. With stories by Jack London, O. Henry, H. Rider Haggard, Alastair MacLean, Talbot Mundy, Cornell Woolrich, and many others, this wide-reaching and fascinating volume contains some of the best characters from the most thrilling adventure tales, including The Cisco Kid; Sheena, Queen of the Jungle; Bulldog Drummond; Tarzan; The Scarlet Pimpernel; Conan the Barbarian; Hopalong Cassidy; King Kong; Zorro; and The Spider. Divided into sections that embody the greatest themes of the genre—Sword & Sorcery, Megalomania Rules, Man vs. Nature, Island Paradise, Sand and Sun, Something Feels Funny, Go West Young Man, Future Shock, I Spy, Yellow Peril, In Darkest Africa—it is destined to be the greatest collection of adventure stories ever compiled.
Table of Contents | Buy the Book

More books For The Nonconformist: The Color of Night, by Madison Smartt Bell; Reality Hunger, by David Shields; Create Dangerously, by Edwidge Danticat; The Baseball, By Zack Hample; Insectopedia, by Hugh Raffles.