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New Arrivals - Downloadable Audio Books

When the platypus was first discovered by Europeans in the 1800s, it was well-known by Australian Aborigines'but no one knew how to classify it. It lived in the water and laid eggs like a reptile, had a bill like a bird, and was furry and warm-blooded like a mammal. Scientists had to come up with a way to solve this and many other mysteries of nature. Alaskan Polar bears sleeping in hidden underground dens caused problems for researchers wanting to drill for oil without disturbing the bears. Find out how scientists used infrared imaging to see the caves beneath the snow. One type of parrot from southern Peru munches on dirt from a riverbank each morning. Learn how these birds (and some people) use dirt as part of their diet. And also learn how a special kind of bird in Africa actually leads villagers to one of the town's main food sources, honey. This collection of articles by Jack Myers, long-time chief science editor for Highlights for Children magazine, answers some of the most interesting questions science has explored.

As his parents' shouting tears through the walls to the room where he is supposed to be sleeping, young Neil Waldman buries his face in his pillow and tries to swallow his tears. The trauma of his parents' fighting rips at him, but it will also open the path to Neil's career as an artist. Seeking refuge from a turbulent home life, Neil and his three siblings turn to the world of creativity. Their mother's book from an art museum in Russia is all the children need to set fire to their imaginations. And from there, drawing and painting become much more than pleasurable diversions'they become lifelines of hope that allow the youths to believe that there is lasting beauty in the world. Recipient of the ALA Notable and Parents' Choice Awards, Waldman has written and illustrated more than 50 books for children. Narrator George Guidall delivers a powerful performance of the author's engaging memoir. 'Waldman offers an engaging, insightful story of how childhood experiences informed his career.''Booklist

An ICU doctor in one of Seattle's most respected hospitals, Dr. Charlotte Reese is used to listening for the chop of the Medvac helicopter and preparing for the worst. But when a Jane hurtles through the doors of Beacon Hospital with tubes keeping her alive, Charlotte's stoic resolve begins to fail her and she becomes obsessed with unraveling the mystery of her patient's identity to solve what is looking more and more like an attempted murder. As Jane Doe's condition worsens over the course of days, Charlotte must decide what matters most as she grapples with the concept of life quality and the idea of letting Jane's fate be decided by a court-appointed guardian with no links to the patient. Filled with stunning medical detail and set against the backdrop of the Pacific Northwest, GEMINI is a vivid novel of moral complexity and emotional depth that will resonate with readers of Sue Miller and Jodi Picoult.

Wherever your home is, it's probably not as tough as Gary, Indiana. Gary has been called a lot of things. The Armpit of Chicago. The Land of Robbing Hoods. Hell. For the children of Gary, living often boils down to surviving. Maybe these kids get caught up in games of gin rummy. Maybe they spin tops as a way to scratch something fun out of their desperation. Maybe they stand by helplessly as their tenement buildings go up in flames. Or maybe they get held up at gunpoint by somebody who wants more money than he could steal from his church collection box. Award-winning poet Curtis L. Crisler's work gives voice to the children of Gary, shedding some light on their experiences. Kevin R. Free, Dion Graham, and JD Jackson provides a haunting performance of Crisler's bittersweet poems. 'Written with skillful manipulation of sound, rhythm, and form, the poems are filled with sophisticated imagery and graphic words '''Booklist, starred review 'These poems are muscular and vivid, fierce with the sound and force of language.''School Library Journal, starred review

For thousands of years, the notion of dragons has struck fear in the hearts of men and women all over the world. The ancient Egyptians believed there was a dragon of darkness that attacked the sun god each day, and in Norway people thought that a dragon gnawed at the roots of the tree that sustained all life on Earth. Around the globe, dragons have been depicted as everything from massive, winged, fire-breathing creatures to beasts sporting a camel's head, deer's horns, rabbit's eyes, and eagle's claws! Dragons might hoard treasure in caves, or they might be responsible for floods and the death of livestock. Dragons, in fact, prove as diverse as the many cultures that tell of them. The works of Laurence Pringle have garnered major awards, including the Eva L. Gordon Award for Children's Science Literature, the Washington Post-Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award, and a Lifetime Achievement Prize from the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

The newest installment in J.R. Ward' s #1 New York Times bestselling Black Dagger Brotherhood series. Wrath and the Brotherhood are locked in an epic battle over his throne and the very future of the vampire race.

Untitled Hannah Swensen #18

Deerfield, Massachusetts--late February, 1704. Although the town is surrounded by a 12-foot-high wall and soldiers stand guard, Mercy Carter doesn't feel completely safe. Deerfield is one of the most remote settlements in the English colonies, and Indian raids are a constant threat. When the raid does come, the colony is overwhelmed. Mercy and the rest of the townspeople are forced to march 300 miles north through bitter cold into Canada. Adopted into Indian families or sold to French Canadians, the people of Deerfield vow to never forget their home. But they are treated well, and as time passes, they are no longer sure where home is. Caroline B. Cooney, the best selling author of such titles as The Face on the Milk Carton (RB# 95337) and Whatever Happened to Janie' (RB# 95429), bases this powerful tale on real-life events and people. Narrator Christina Moore expresses the turmoil within Mercy's heart as she struggles to understand the true meaning of love and family.

'I am going to be cremated. I want you to take my ashes out alone on the Frog, out to sea alone, and leave me there. Take me to where you can't see land and scatter my ashes there on the water '' 14-year-old David Alspeth is the owner of a 22-foot sailboat, an inheritance from his uncle Owen, who recently died of cancer. Uncle Owen's last request before he died was that David should take his ashes out to sea, a job David would give anything to avoid. When he finally sets sail on calm, clear evening, David feels the weight of what he must do all around him. He can't imagine life without Owen. David completes his task, but on the return trip home he is caught unawares by a freak storm. Stranded, with no compass, no radio, and only a few cans of food, it seems as if things couldn't get any worse. But they do.

Miss Julia masterminds a makeover in New York Times bestselling author Ann B. Ross' s latest installment in her popular series It' s summer in Abbotsville, and Miss Julia has visions of enjoying a life of leisure. But before she can even sip some iced tea on her front porch, a letter from her long-lost cousin Elsie informs her that Elsie' s granddaughter is on a bus headed to Abbotsville that very day. Reminding Miss Julia of an old family debt, Elsie proclaims that she is sending Trixie to Miss Julia' s to learn to become a lady. The nerve of some people! When the rude and unkempt Trixie arrives, even Sam and Lloyd agree that Miss Julia faces quite a challenge. Meanwhile, Sam has decided to run for state senate. But when he has a fainting spell and has to go into the hospital for tests, who will run his campaign' Is his no-good rival going to cakewalk into office' No sir, not if Miss Julia has anything to say about it-- and indeed she does, including up on the stump. In this marvelous addition to the popular series, Miss Julia is sure to have a summer that she-- and Abbotsville-- will never forget!

Everything about the man is a mystery: the massive ranch in the remote Black Hills of Wyoming that nobody ever visits, the women who live with him, the secret philanthropies, the private airstrip, the sudden disappearances. And especially the persistent rumors that the man' s wealth comes from killing people. Joe Pickett, still officially a game warden but now mostly a troubleshooter for the governor, is assigned to find out what the truth is, but he discovers a lot more than he' d bargained for. There are two other men living up at that ranch. One is a stone-cold killer who takes an instant dislike to Joe. The other is new-- but Joe knows him all too well. The first man doesn' t frighten Joe. The second is another story entirely.

Greg Heffley's on a losing streak. His best friend, Rowley Jefferson, has ditched him, and finding new friends in middle school is proving to be a tough task. To change his fortunes, Greg decides to take a leap of faith and turn his decisions over to chance. Will a roll of the dice turn things around, or is Greg's life destined to be just another hard-luck story?

Francis Tucket's life has been exciting ever since his family headed to Oregon in a wagon train. First he was kidnapped by Pawnee Indians. Then Mr. Grimes, a one-armed mountain, man rescued him and taught him wilderness survival skills. Later when Francis set off alone to find his parents on the Oregon Trail, he ended up rescuing two young children stranded in the barren land. Now in Tucket's Ride, winter is forcing 15-year-old Francis to take Lottie and Billy south to avoid snowy mountains. Soon they are in the midst of a war between Mexico and the United States! But Francis' troubles really begin when they meet up with the West's most ruthless outlaw band, the Comancheros. Newbery Honor winner Gary Paulsen spins tales of the American frontier in the 1840s with realistic details and gritty honesty. Tucket's Ride continues Francis' action-packed adventure series that begins with Mr. Tucket (RB# 94209), then Call Me Francis Tucket (RB# 94576).

To those who matter in 1950s Hollywood, Lena Scott is the hottest rising star to hit the silver screen since Marilyn Monroe. Few know her real name is Abra. Even fewer know the price she' s paid to finally feel like she' s somebody. To Pastor Ezekiel Freeman, Abra will always be the little girl who stole his heart the night he found her, a wailing newborn abandoned under a bridge on the outskirts of Haven. Zeke and his son, Joshua-- Abra' s closest friend-- watch her grow into an exotic beauty. But Zeke knows the circumstances surrounding her birth etched scars deep in her heart, scars that leave her vulnerable to a fast-talking bad boy who proclaims his love and lures her to Tinseltown. Hollywood feels like a million miles from Haven, and naive Abra quickly learns what' s expected of an ambitious girl with stars in her eyes. But fame comes at an awful price. She has burned every bridge to get exactly what she thought she wanted. Now, all she wants is a way back home. In this riveting and highly anticipated tale of temptation, grace, and unconditional love, New York Times best-selling author Francine Rivers delivers big-canvas storytelling at its very best.

From the New York Times-bestselling author of Lionheart comes the dramatic sequel, telling of the last dangerous years of Richard, Couer de Lion's life. This long-anticipated sequel to the national bestseller Lionheart is a vivid and heart-wrenching story of the last event-filled years in the life of Richard, Coeur de Lion.

The harrowing account of a black man, born free in New York State, who was drugged, kidnapped, and sold into slavery in 1841. Having no way to contact his family, and fearing for his life if he told the truth, Solomon Northup was sold from plantation to plantation in Louisiana, toiling under cruel masters for twelve years before meeting Samuel Bass, a Canadian who finally put him in touch with his family, and helped start the process to regain his freedom.

Miss Amity Doncaster, world traveler, is accustomed to adventure and risk. Benedict Stanbridge, a man of science and a spy for the Crown, has faced danger in the darker corners of foreign lands. But they are about to face a threat that is shockingly close to home. One does not expect to be kidnapped on a London street in broad daylight. But Amity Doncaster barely escapes with her life after she is trapped in a carriage with a blade-wielding man in a black silk mask who whispers the most vile taunts and threats into her ear. Her quick thinking, and her secret weapon, save her, for now. But the monster known in the press as the Bridegroom, who has left a trail of female victims in his wake, has survived the wounds she inflicts and will soon be on his feet again. He is unwholesomely obsessed by her scandalous connection to Benedict Stanbridge'gossip about their hours alone in a ship's stateroom seems to have crossed the Atlantic faster than any sailing vessel could. Benedict refuses to let this resourceful, daring woman suffer for her romantic link to him'as tenuous as it may be. For a man and woman so skilled at disappearing, so at home in the exotic reaches of the globe, escape is always an option. But each intends to end the Bridegroom's reign of terror in London, and will join forces to do so. And as they prepare to confront an unbalanced criminal in the heart of the city they love, they must also face feelings that neither of them can run away from.

Author Bob Woods takes readers on a wild ride through the exciting world of motorcycles! From the history of motorcycles to motorcycle racing, cruisers, choppers, and motocross, biking fans will find plenty here to keep them hooked.

Presented with an unexpected assignment, Alex Rider's greatest nemesis, Yassen Gregoravich, recalls his life and the path that led him to become an assassin while his one-time friend, Alex's uncle, became a spy.

Donna Leon' s critically acclaimed, internationally bestselling Commissario Guido Brunetti series has attracted readers the world over with the beauty of its setting, the humanity of its characters, and its fearlessness in exploring politics, morality, and contemporary Italian culture. In the pages of Leon' s novels, the beloved conversations of the Brunetti family have drawn on topics of art and literature, but books are at the heart of this novel in a way they never have been before. One afternoon, Commissario Guido Brunetti gets a frantic call from the director of a prestigious Venetian library. Someone has stolen pages out of several rare books. After a round of questioning, the case seems clear: the culprit must be the man who requested the volumes, an American professor from a Kansas university. The only problem-- the man fled the library earlier that day, and after checking his credentials, the American professor doesn' t exist. As the investigation proceeds, the suspects multiply. And when a seemingly harmless theologian, who had spent years reading at the library turns up brutally murdered, Brunetti must question his expectations about what makes a man innocent, or guilty.

Negro league baseball players didn't always get the respect that major leaguers received. And yet many'including Jackie Robinson, Willie Mays, Hank Aaron, Ernie Banks, and Roy Campanella'quickly became standouts in the major leagues after 1947. Others didn't get to prove their mettle in the majors at all'or not until long past their prime. Leroy 'Satchel' Paige mixed his blazing fastball with 29 other devastating pitches to win 42 games and strike out 402 batters in 1936. Credited with 175 stolen bases in one year, speedster James 'Cool Papa' Bell delighted fans by scoring from first base on a bunt. And powered by steroid-free meals, Josh Gibson hit 75 homeruns in 1931'with one blast sailing 580 feet and another shattering a seat in Yankee Stadium. New York Times best-selling author Carole Boston Weatherford compiles an enthralling summary of Negro league history that includes fascinating tidbits about prominent pitchers, hitters, utility players, teams, and traditions. 'An engaging overview ' especially successful in conveying the significance of the Negro leagues to the black community and in detailing the realities of segregation.''Library Journal '[This] is a thorough picture of the Negro leagues in all their sadness, pain, and glory. One doesn't need to be a baseball fan to be fascinated.''Kirkus Reviews 'A lively presentation'give it credit for at least a triple.''Booklist

A reimagining of the world and story of Hamlet--from Ophelia's perspective and set in an American boarding school.

A profoundly searching new novel by a writer of incomparable range, power, and achievement. In the winter of 1996, more than a hundred women and men of diverse nationality, background, and belief gather at the site of a former concentration camp for an unprecedented purpose: a weeklong retreat during which they will offer prayer and witness at the crematoria and meditate in all weathers on the selection platform, while eating and sleeping in the quarters of the Nazi officers who, half a century before, sent more than a million Jews to their deaths. Clements Olin, an American academic of Polish descent, has come along, ostensibly to complete research on the death of a survivor, even as he questions what a non-Jew can contribute to the understanding of so monstrous a catastrophe. As the days pass, tensions, both political and personal, surface among the participants, stripping away any easy pretense to healing or closure. Finding himself in the grip of emotions and impulses of bewildering intensity, Olin is forced to abandon his observer' s role and to embrace a history his family has long suppressed-- and with it the yearnings and contradictions of being fully alive. In Paradise is a brave and deeply thought-provoking novel by one of our most stunningly accomplished writers.

Did you know there are over 400 different species of sharks' Did you know they have been on Earth much longer than humans, and even lived before the dinosaurs' Here you'll learn all about these fearsome kings of the ocean, including their eating habits and the basics of their anatomy. Sharks come in many sizes, from under a foot long to over 40 feet'and that's not even counting the long-extinct, 60-foot-long Megalodon shark. And while some have been known to bite people, they are usually quite content to hunt other sea creatures. There are many things we still don't know about sharks, but this is an excellent jumping-off point to discover more! Winner of the Washington Post/Children's Book Guild Nonfiction Award, author Laurence Pringle presents this masterful introduction to one of nature's most misunderstood, yet exciting, animals. '... [an] inviting introduction to a fascinating array of sharks.''School Library Journal

In San Diego in 1918, as deadly influenza and World War I take their toll, sixteen-year-old Mary Shelley Black watches desperate mourners flock to séances and spirit photographers for comfort and, despite her scientific leanings, must consider if ghosts are real when her first love, killed in battle, returns.

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