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Under the Skin

One of those love it or hate it films.....almost devoid of dialogue, Under the Skin (Jonathan Glazer's vision of Michael Faber's 2000 novel) is a work of art; viewing it is a mesmerizing out-of-this world Kubrick-like sensory experience you won't soon forget.   Scarlett Johansson masterfully embodies her role of an seductively disguised alien presence who drives around Scotland picking up lonely, single men, leading them into a pitch-black tar-like pool in which each eventually disintegrates and is absorbed.

The Fourteenth Goldfish

 “Middle school is like one of those highway restrooms in the middle of nowhere. It’s dirty and smelly and it’s crowded with strange people.”

Cinder

Cinder is a fairy tale reimagined and sci-fy wonderland, altogether a captivating novel taking place in a futuristic and high-tech China, which is now known as the Eastern Commonwealth. Linh Cinder is a mechanic and cyborg, and treated as an inferior citizen by most. Her best friend is a feisty android and all she wants more than anything is to escape from the watchful and evil eye of her stepmother Lihn Adri.

For Goodness Sex: Changing the Way We Talk to Teens About Sexuality, Values, and Health

Vernacchio—Mr. V to his students—is a high school sexuality educator in Pennsylvania. His Sexuality and Society class for seniors is the basis for much of this book. Sex-negative messages from abstinence advocates do not teach teens about creating a healthy and happy sexual life, and if parents aren’t teaching them, they are likely looking for answers from Google, internet porn, and each other.

Gray Mountain

I’ll say up front that this is not John Grisham’s best novel. However, a middling Grisham legal thriller is still better than a lot of other books, so if you’re a Grisham fan you’ll likely want to listen to this anyway. Samantha Kofer, a young lawyer working in a huge Manhattan firm, is furloughed after the Lehman Brothers meltdown in 2008. She lands at the Mountain Legal Aid Clinic in Brady, Virginia, for a one-year volunteer stint.

Lock In

Lock inBy Scalzi, John, 1969-

A few survivors of a pandemic called Haden’s Syndrome, which killed 400 million people, are in a “locked-in” state: fully aware but without functioning bodies. Some of the other survivors are able to allow a Hadens to temporarily take over their bodies: these folks are the integrators. Haden Chris Shane is an FBI agent who deals with cases involving Hadens; he is working a murder case with his partner Leslie Vann; the chief suspect is one of the integrators, who cannot remember anything about the crime. A complicated but artfully handled plot ensues, touching on issues of ethics and disability, politics and corporate greed. Scalzi creates a completely believable future world in which advanced neuroscience has altered what it means to be human. Well-drawn characters and an intriguing story propel the action in this fast-paced thriller.

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Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki & His Year of Pilgrimage

Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and his years of pilgrimage : a novelBy Murakami, Haruki, 1949- author.

Published in April 2013 in Japan, Murakami’s latest novel had already sold over a million copies prior to its 2014 U.S. release. Tsukuru Tazaki is a young man with four very good friends; growing up together they have formed a tight-knit group and are virtually inseparable. Each member’s name means a different color, except Tsukuru’s , which means “builder” (hence the “colorless”). Quite suddenly, none of these friends wants anything to do with him; he is completely cut off and shunned with no explanation. Suffering this great loss leads him to leave town and try to find some kind of peace for himself. We pick up his life again at age 30: he has settled into a job designing railroad stations, but is burdened with strange dreams and haunted by his inexplicable past. His girlfriend insists that he resolve these old conflicts for them to have a meaningful, honest relationship, so he sets off to confront each of his old friends.

Widely acknowledged as one of the best books of 2014, Murakami's novel is available in regular and large print as well as a book on CD.

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The Spinning Heart

Primarily a work of psychological fiction, this debut book by Donal Ryan is brief, but it packs a lot of insights into human nature along the way. Book of the Year Award-winner from the Irish Book Awards, The Spinning Heart tells the story of a small, rural town in contemporary Ireland just after the financial collapse. The book starts with Bobby Mahon, whose father has the titular spinning heart on the gate to the farmhouse where he grew up.

Tools for Living Meditation Kit

YDL’s Tools for Living Meditation Kit was put together to help its user find tranquility through the use of mediation and yoga. Included in the kit are two DVDs to help introduce your to the practice of yoga, Yoga for Beginners and Yoga for Seniors. There is also a book and CD set of guided mediation. To complete the meditation experience we’ve included a book stand to keep your hands free, and an electric aromatherapy diffuser to create the perfect ambience for practicing your new found hobby.

Reaching Down The Rabbit Hole

What causes a young college student to start hallucinating that her clothes were after her?

How do you break the news to a young father that he can’t undo the tabs on his daughter’s diaper due to a terrible disease?

The Book of Strange New Things

The book of strange new things : a novelBy Faber, Michel

Peter is a Christian pastor with a shady past who is hired by USIC to minister to the indigenous population of Oasis, a planet they are colonizing. The Oaseans supply food for the USIC base in exchange for medicine, and seem to have a preternatural interest in receiving the Word of God, Whose Bible they call the Book of Strange New Things. They are overjoyed to receive Peter, as the previous pastor disappeared. Peter has left behind on Earth his beloved wife, Beatrice, who did not make it through the USIC screening process, and must cope with both her pregnancy and the increasingly apocalyptic conditions the planet is experiencing. Living for stretches of time with the Oaseans, Peter quickly adapts to their language and culture, and is driven to meet their spiritual needs; at the same time he is devastated by heartbreaking letters from Bea. A masterful examination of man’s relationships with God and self.
Michael Faber is also the author of two critically acclaimed books: The Crimson Petal and the White, and Under the Skin (the basis for the 2014 Jonathan Glazer film of the same name).

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The Fever

The town of Dryden is desperate for answers. No one knows why several teenage girls within the community are falling ill. Is it the polluted algae filled lake in the center of town, or the vaccines that the girls were all encouraged to get that? Is the drinking water polluted? Is it contagious?! The Fever is told from the perspective of the Nash family, single dad and high school teacher Tom, and his two kids, loyal Deenie and aloof Eli. Deenie’s good friend Lise is the first girl to contract the illness, falling over and convulsing in class one morning.

Station Eleven

Yea! Another post-apocalyptic novel! I never get tired of these, and this one is fantastic. The story begins with the on-stage heart attack of a famous actor, Arthur Leander, in a Toronto production of King Lear. An EMT in the audience, Jeevan, tries to revive him, but is unsuccessful. A child actress named Kirsten watches in shock as the incident unfolds. That same night a pandemic flu hits Toronto and, once it travels through the world’s population, over 99% will be dead.

Boy, Snow, Bird

Boy, snow, bird : a novelBy Oyeyemi, Helen

Boy is Boy Novak, who flees the abusive home of her father, Frank Novak, a New York rat-catcher. She settles in rural Massachusetts, eventually marrying Arturo Whitman, a widower with a young, angelic daughter named Snow. When Boy and Arturo have a daughter, the baby (named Bird) is born dark-skinned, exposing the Whitman family as light-skinned African Americans passing as white. The Whitman family, headed by Arturo’s strident mother, Olivia, has kept this secret by banishing any dark skinned children. In the uproar that ensues, Boy actually banishes her stepdaughter, Snow, who is sent off to live with her Aunt Clara’s family. We read both Bird’s and Snow’s stories about growing up separately and how the perception of “other” insinuates itself throughout the Whitman family. Intriguing and magical, this is a demanding short novel with many surprises in store for the reader.

Oyeyemi's other books include The Icarus Girl, The Opposite House, White is for Witching, and Mr. Fox. In 2013, she was named one of Granta's Best Young British Novelists.

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Nora Webster

Nora Webster : a novelBy Tóibín, Colm, 1955-

Nora Webster is a young Irish widow left with four children who struggles with loneliness and poverty when her beloved husband, Maurice, takes ill and dies. With two daughters away at school, Nora sends her two young sons away while she cares for their dying father. The story takes place in the 1970’s in a small Irish town, full of nosy neighbors and know-it-all relatives. Nora has a strong, independent streak, and is determined to put their lives straight despite many hardships and difficult decisions.. In addition to being a masterful character study, the author also shows the effects of a stressful political time in Ireland and the influence of Catholicism on the family’s life. A quiet, steady, penetrating novel told with Tóibin’s exquisite prose, Nora Webster tells of one woman's rediscovery of a her true nature.

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Award Winners & Bestsellers

Nobel Prize
2014 Prize in Literature
Patrick Modiano

National Book Award

2014 Prize for Fiction
Redeployment
by Phil Klay

2014 Prize for Nonfiction
Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China
by Evan Osnos

Newbery Medal
2015 award
The Crossover
by Kwame Alexander

Caldecott Medal
2015 award
The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend

b
y Dan Santat

Printz Award

2015 award
I'll Give You the Sun
by Jandy Nelson

New York Times Fiction Bestsellers (top 5 combined print & e-book sales)
Grey
, by E.L. James
The Girl on the Train
, by Paula Hawkins
The Rumor
, by Elin Hilderbrand
Tom Clancy Under Fire
, by Grant Blackwood
Country
, by Danielle Steel

New York Times Nonfiction Bestsellers (top 5 combined print & e-book sales)
The Wright Brothers
, by David McCullough
Modern Romance, by Aziz Ansari with Eric Klinenberg
The Boys in the Boat
, by Daniel James Brown
Dead Wake
, by Erik Larson
Bill O'Reilly's Legends and Lies
, by David Fisher

 

More Award Winners & Bestsellers

Following is a list of award-winning and bestselling materials from a variety of sources. Links will take you to an external page that will open in a new window. If YDL does not have an item you are interested in, please submit a Materials Suggestion to us.

Academy Awards

American Booksellers Association National Indie Bestsellers

Billboard Top 100 songs

Caldecott Medal

Coretta Scott King Award

New York Times Bestsellers

Newbery Medal

Printz Award