The Bookshelf |

The Bookshelf

“The Dark River” by John Twelve Hawks. In “The Traveler,” John Twelve Hawks introduced readers to a dangerous world inspired by the modern technology that monitors our lives. Under constant surveillance of the Vast Machine, a sophisticated computer network run by a ruthless group, society is mostly unaware of its own imprisonment. Gabriel and Michael Corrigan, brothers who were raised ” off the grid, ” have recently learned they are travelers like their long-lost father, part of a centuries-old line of prophets able to journey to different realms of consciousness and enlighten the world to resist being controlled. But power affects the brothers differently. As “The Traveler “ends, Gabriel hesitates under the weight of responsibility. Michael seizes the opportunity, and joins the enemy. “The Dark River” opens in New York City with a stunning piece of news. Gabriel’s father, who has been missing for nearly 20 years, may still be alive and trapped somewhere in Europe. A mesmerizing return to the places and people so richly portrayed in “The Traveler,” “The Dark River” is propelled by edge-of-the-seat suspense and haunted by a vision of a world where both hope and freedom are about to disappear. This is the stuff that first-rate, high-tech thrillers are made of.

“The Art of Deception” by Laurie R. King. Bestseller King meshes her two best-known series – contemporary police procedurals set in San Francisco featuring Kate Martinelli of the San Francisco Police Department and the period stories of Mary Russell and her husband, Sherlock Holmes – to create an intelligent, satisfying novel of suspense. Martinelli is investigating the death of Philip Gilbert, an obsessively avid Holmes collector, when she discovers what could be the motive: a previously unpublished story from Arthur Conan Doyle that is told from Holmes’ point of view, a find that could be worth millions. The pages of this tale are interspersed with Kate’s investigation, allowing King not only to bring her Mary Russell and Martinelli series together with incredible elegance but also to allow us glimpses of Kate, her partner Leonora, and their daughter Nora juxtaposed against the tough daily grind of police work. This is a tour de force and a great read. (New in mass market paperback)

“The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Wine Dynasty” by Julia Flynn Siler. An epic, scandal-plagued story of the immigrant family that built, and then spectacularly lost, a global wine empire. Award-winning journalist Siler brings to life the place and the people in this riveting family drama. The Mondavis were the Kennedys of American wine, a family whose rapid ascent from its hardscrabble past was matched only by its devastating decline. This searing saga shows how one family built and reigned over America’s pre-eminent wine empire until their towering achievement crumbled under the weight of sibling rivalry, bitterness, and greed.

“Passion and Principle: John and Jessie Fremont, the Couple Whose Power, Politics, and Love Shaped Nineteenth-Century America” by Sally Denton. She was the daughter of powerful Missouri politician Thomas Hart Benton and was a savvy political operator who played confidante and advisor to the inner circle of the highest political powers in the country. He was a key figure in western exploration and California’ s first senator, and he became the first presidential candidate for the Republican Party and the first candidate to challenge slavery. Both shaped their times and were far ahead of it, but most extraordinarily, their story has never fully been told. Thanks in part to a deep-seated family quarrel between Jessie’s father and the couple, John and Jessie were eclipsed and opposed by some of the most mythic characters of their era, not least of whom was Abraham Lincoln. Award-winning historian Sally Denton restores the reputations of John and Jessie and places them where they belong, at the center of our country’s history.

“In the Company of Crows and Ravens” by John M. Marzluff and Tony Angell. From the cave walls at Lascaux to the last painting by van Gogh, from the works of Shakespeare to those of Mark Twain, there is clear evidence that crows and ravens influence human culture. Yet this influence is not unidirectional, say the authors of this fascinating book: People profoundly influence crow culture, ecology and evolution, as well. This book examines the often-surprising ways that crows and ravens and humans interact. Featuring award-winning illustrations, the book recounts lively stories about crows and ravens throughout history and around the world, and the authors challenge us to reconsider our thinking, not only about these compelling birds, but also about ourselves. (New in trade paper)


Compiled by manager Susan Beck at The Book Seller, 107 Mill St., Grass Valley, 272-2131. Hours are Mondays through Fridays, 9:30 a.m. to 7 p.m.; Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.; and Sundays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

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