Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline
Days after winning OASIS founder James Halliday’s contest, Wade Watts makes a discovery that changes everything. Hidden within Halliday’s vaults, waiting for his heir to find, lies a technological advancement that will once again change the world and make the OASIS a thousand times more wondrous—and addictive—than even Wade dreamed possible.
With it comes a new riddle, and a new quest—a last Easter egg from Halliday, hinting at a mysterious prize. And an unexpected, impossibly powerful, and dangerous new rival awaits, one who’ll kill millions to get what he wants.
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Dark Tides by Philippa Gregory
Midsummer Eve 1670. Two unexpected visitors arrive at a shabby warehouse on the south side of the River Thames. The first is a wealthy man hoping to find the lover he deserted twenty-one years before. James Avery has everything to offer, including the favor of the newly restored King Charles II, and he believes that the warehouse’s poor owner Alinor has the one thing his money cannot buy—his son and heir.
The second visitor is a beautiful widow from Venice in deepest mourning. She claims Alinor as her mother-in-law and has come to tell Alinor that her son Rob has drowned in the dark tides of the Venice lagoon.
Alinor writes to her brother Ned, newly arrived in faraway New England and trying to make a life between the worlds of the English newcomers and the American Indians as they move toward inevitable war. Alinor tells him that she knows—without doubt—that her son is alive and the widow is an imposter.
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Night in Tehran by Philip Kaplan
In the style of Alan Furst, this suspenseful thriller — based on real events — places an idealistic American diplomat in a turbulent, US-hating Tehran in the days leading up to the Iranian Revolution. Backed by the CIA, and trailed by a beautiful and engaging French journalist he suspects is a spy, David Weiseman’s mission is to ease the Shah of Iran out of power and find the best alternative between the military, religious extremists, and the political ruling class — many of whom are simultaneously trying to kill him.
The Awakening by Nora Roberts
When Breen Kelly was a girl, her father would tell her stories of magical places. Now she’s an anxious twentysomething mired in student debt and working a job she hates. But one day she stumbles upon a shocking discovery: her mother has been hiding an investment account in her name. It has been funded by her long-lost father―and it’s worth nearly four million dollars.
This newfound fortune would be life-changing for anyone. But little does Breen know that when she uses some of the money to journey to Ireland, it will unlock mysteries she couldn’t have imagined. Here, she will begin to understand why she kept seeing that silver-haired, elusive man, why she imagined his voice in her head saying Come home, Breen Siobhan. It’s time you came home. Why she dreamed of dragons. And where her true destiny lies―through a portal in Galway that takes her to a land of faeries and mermaids, to a man named Keegan, and to the courage in her own heart that will guide her through a powerful, dangerous destiny…
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Stuff You Should Know by Chuck Bryant and Josh Clark
Josh Clark and Chuck Bryant started the podcast Stuff You Should Know back in 2008 because they were curious―curious about the world around them, curious about what they might have missed in their formal educations, and curious to dig deeper on stuff they thought they understood.
As it turns out, they aren’t the only curious ones. They’ve since amassed a rabid fan base, making Stuff You Should Know one of the most popular podcasts in the world. Armed with their inquisitive natures and a passion for sharing, they uncover the weird, fascinating, delightful, or unexpected elements of a wide variety of topics.
The pair have now taken their near-boundless “whys” and “hows” from your earbuds to the pages of a book for the first time―featuring a completely new array of subjects that they’ve long wondered about and wanted to explore. Each chapter is further embellished with snappy visual material to allow for rabbit-hole tangents and digressions―including charts, illustrations, sidebars, and footnotes. Follow along as the two dig into the underlying stories of everything from the origin of Murphy beds, to the history of facial hair, to the psychology of being lost.