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The Bell Rang by James E. Ransome
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Kirkus A girl's family life and plantation routines are interrupted when three enslaved boys run away. Most days start the same way: The bell rings, Daddy collects wood, Mama prepares breakfast, they eat together. The narrator's brother, Ben, her parents, and the other slaves go to the fields while the girl stays with the young ones to play. On Wednesday, Ben surprises her with a handmade doll. On Thursday, Ben and his two friends are gone. There ...More

The adventures of Beekle : the unimaginary friend by Dan Santat
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Publishers Weekly On an island of imaginary friends waiting "to be picked by a child and given a special name," one friend-he's adorably pudgy, and wears a paper crown-resolves to wait no longer. He sets sail in a small boat, but the sea serpents and whales he encounters are not nearly as daunting as the real world, which is gray and pedestrian: "No kids were eating cake. No one stopped to hear the music." At last, his human ...More

Heart and Soul: The Story of America and African Americans by Kadir Nelson
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Publishers Weekly As in We Are the Ship, Nelson knits together the nation's proudest moments with its most shameful, taking on the whole of African-American history, from Revolutionary-era slavery up to the election of President Obama. He handles this vast subject with easy grace, aided by the voice of a grandmotherly figure who's an amalgam of voices from Nelson's own family. She does not gloss over the sadness and outrage of her family...More

American Gods by Neil Gaiman
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Book list Shadow, a strong, silent, Steven Seagal type, has kept his head down while doing time for creaming the guys who ran off with his share of a heist. He is about to be released, ticket home in hand, thanks to his lovely wife; then his departure is pushed up a few days--unhappily, so that he can attend her funeral. Weather forces his flight down in St. Louis, and he winds up on a short hop seated next to a mysterious Mr. Wednesday, who inform...More

Doctor Sleep by Stephen King
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Book list King, not one given to sequels, throws fans a big, bloody bone with this long-drooled-for follow-up to The Shining (1977). The events of the Overlook Hotel had resounding effects upon Danny Torrance, and decades later he's a drunk like his father, wondering what his battle with the ghosties was even for. Dan still feels the pull of the shining, though, and it lands him in a small New England town where he finds friends, an AA group, and a jo...More

Wilmington?s Lie: The Murderous Coup of 1898 and the Rise of White Supremacy by David Zucchino
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Library Journal In the late 1890s, Wilmington, NC, was a successful mixed-race community with a strong African American middle class that actively participated in a government comprising Republicans and Populists. Then white supremacist Democrats used a black newspaper editorial to foment unrest aimed at overthrowing Wilmington's elected officials, eventually dispatching 2,000 armed night riders to terrorize the populace. At least 60 black men were ki...More

How to Live OR a life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty by Sarah Bakewell
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Publishers Weekly Bakewell's biography of Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), the French nobleman and father of the exploratory, free-floating essay, departs from chronology to present his life through questions and answers ("How to Live? Don't Worry About Death" and "Be Convivial: Live with Others") that consider "the man and writer" as well as the "long party"-the "accumulation of shared and privat...More

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