Nonfiction

An gripping account of the rise and fall of Iran's glamorous Pahlavi dynasty, written with the cooperation of the late Shah's widow, Empress Farah In this remarkably human portrait of one of the 20th century's most complicated personalities, Mohammad Reza Pahlavi.

Biography of the maverick newspaperwoman, equestrian, aviatrix and intrepid adventurer Alicia Patterson, following  her exceptional exploits through the first half of the 20th century, from her trouble making days as the middle child of complicated parents to her successes as publisher of the Pulitzer Prize winning Newsday.

Nonfiction Book Group October 2016

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The Vanderbilt family patriarch, the Commodore, built a fortune that made him the world's richest man by 1877. Less than 50 years after his death, not a single Vanderbilt descendent was counted among the world's richest people. As Publisher's Weekly noted in the review of this book, "Stories about the author's ancestors have been told before, but not so vividly as in his evocations of the snobbery, ostentation and profligacy.Today's Vanderbilts are not rich-rich; the money is gone with the clan's grand homes, felled by wrecking balls in New York and elsewhere, leaving only memories of a singular time in the American past."

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Nonfiction Book Group September 2016

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Also available in: e-book | audiobook | large print

A loving and hilarious--if occasionally spiky--valentine to Bill Bryson's adopted country, Great Britain. Twenty years ago, Bill Bryson went on a trip around Britain to discover that green and pleasant land. The result was Notes from a Small Island, a true classic and one of the bestselling travel books ever written. Now he has traveled about Britain again, by bus and train and rental car and on foot, to see what has changed--and what hasn't. Following (but not too closely) a route he dubs the Bryson Line, from Bognor Regis in the south to Cape Wrath in the north Bryson rediscovers the wondrously beautiful, magnificently eccentric, endearingly singular country.

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Fleeing Eastern Europe as the shadow of WWI looms large with nothing but twenty dollars in his socks, Nathan arrives in New York with the insatiable desire to make a better life, and within two years he sets up a shop of his own, hawking frankfurters for five cents at the sleepy little beach retreat of Coney Island. As New York booms, pushing trains and patrons to the shore, so too do Nathan's humble hotdogs. Within ten years he has the whole corner, and a brand as recognizable as Coca-Cola and Cracker Jack.

 In 2009, Clinton Romesha of Red Platoon and the rest of Black Knight Troop were preparing to shut down Command Outpost (COP) Keating, the most remote and inaccessible in a string of bases built by the US military in Nuristan and Kunar in the hope of preventing Taliban insurgents from moving freely back and forth between Afghanistan and Pakistan. Three years after its construction, the army was finally ready to concede what the men on the ground had known immediately: it was simply too isolated and too dangerous to defend. On October 3, 2009, after years of constant smaller attacks, the Taliban finally decided to throw everything they had at Keating. 

Being a practising Muslim in a Western society is sometimes challenging, sometimes rewarding and sometimes downright absurd. How do you explain why Eid never falls on the same date each year; why it is that Halal butchers also sell teapots and alarm clocks. How do you make clear to the plumber that it's essential the toilet is installed within sitting-arm's reach of the tap? Zarqa Nawaz has seen and done it all.

Jackie Robinson : an integrated life by J. Christopher Schutz
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