The Knife Man

Blood, Body Snatching, and the Birth of Modern Surgery

The Knife Man

When Robert Louis Stevenson wrote his gothic horror story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, he based the house of the genial doctor-turned-fiend on the home of John Hunter. The choice was understandable, for Hunter was both widely acclaimed and greatly feared. From humble origins, John Hunter rose to become the most famous anatomist and surgeon of the eighteenth century. In an age when operations were crude, extremely painful, and often fatal, he rejected medieval traditions to forge a revolution in surgery founded on pioneering scientific experiments. Using the knowledge he gained from countless human dissections, Hunter worked to improve medical care for both the poorest and the best-known figures of the era—including Sir Joshua Reynolds and the young Lord Byron. An insatiable student of all life-forms, Hunter was also an expert naturalist. He kept exotic creatures in his country menagerie and dissected the first animals brought back by Captain Cook from Australia. Ultimately his research led him to expound highly controversial views on the age of the earth, as well as equally heretical beliefs on the origins of life more than sixty years before Darwin published his famous theory. Although a central figure of the Enlightenment, Hunter’s tireless quest for human corpses immersed him deep in the sinister world of body snatching. He paid exorbitant sums for stolen cadavers and even plotted successfully to steal the body of Charles Byrne, famous in his day as the “Irish giant.” In The Knife Man, Wendy Moore unveils John Hunter’s murky and macabre world—a world characterized by public hangings, secret expeditions to dank churchyards, and gruesome human dissections in pungent attic rooms. This is a fascinating portrait of a remarkable pioneer and his determined struggle to haul surgery out of the realms of meaningless superstitious ritual and into the dawn of modern medicine.

The Knifeman

The Knifeman


Bingo's Run

A Novel

Bingo's Run

For fans of Dave Eggers, Teju Cole, and James McBride, comes this extraordinary novel of morality and the redemptive powers of art that offers a glimpse into an African underworld rarely described in fiction. Meet Bingo, the greatest drug runner in the slums of Kibera, Nairobi, and maybe the world. A teenage grifter, often mistaken for a younger boy, he faithfully serves Wolf, the drug lord of Kibera. Bingo spends his days throwing rocks at Krazi Hari, the prophet of Kibera’s garbage mound, “lipping” safari tourists of their cash, and hanging out with his best friend, Slo-George, a taciturn fellow whose girth is a mystery to Bingo in a place where there is never enough food. Bingo earns his keep by running “white” to a host of clients, including Thomas Hunsa, a reclusive artist whose paintings, rooted in African tradition, move him. But when Bingo witnesses a drug-related murder and Wolf sends him to an orphanage for “protection,” Bingo’s life changes and he learns that life itself is the “run.” A modern trickster tale that draws on African folklore, Bingo’s Run is a wildly original, often very funny, and always moving story of a boy alone in a corrupt and dangerous world who must depend on his wits and inner resources to survive. ONE OF LIBRARY JOURNAL’S OUTSTANDING NEW VOICES TO CONSIDER “Bingo’s voice guides us; by turns he is aggressive, confident, smart, cynical, but also naive. Bingo tosses his observations at us with great urgency, almost percussively, in a staccato manner that recalls gunshots. And though he’s blunt, he’s also a sensitive observer. . . . Levine is creating a sense of an entire world, raffish and fast. . . . The larger story Levine is telling . . . is the story of a person’s mind, and of the good, bad, and indifferent forces that make him what he is—and that story is told with compassion and intelligence.”—The Boston Globe “James A. Levine is a deeply gifted writer who reaches into the dirt, sweat, and diesel of modern-day Nairobi and introduces us to a young innocent whose adventures are unforgettable. Bingo’s runs between joy and death, laughter and sorrow, survival and redemption, will make you feel like cheering.”—James McBride, author of The Good Lord Bird and The Color of Water “Bingo’s Run is one of those rare books that infuse a potentially difficult subject with intimacy, tenderness, and humor. Social commentary, gritty comedy, and pure cinematic adrenaline meet in an utterly compelling novel with a voice all its own.”—Tash Aw, author of Five Star Billionaire “Bingo’s Run manages to read like timely news and high adventure at the same time. Levine’s main character, Bingo, is an underage drug runner, hardened orphan, and hustler extraordinaire. He’s also funny and wise well beyond his years. The rousing story of Bingo’s evolution is matched only by Levine’s portrait of modern-day Nairobi, both child and city depicted with real flair and affection.”—Victor LaValle, author of The Devil in Silver “Bingo is a fascinating and inimitably likable character. Levine, a Mayo clinic professor of medicine and well-known child advocate, excels at telling his adventurous, comic, and realistically gritty story with humor but not with pathos, successfully addressing the harsh and sometimes tragic story of a child at risk.”—Library Journal

Among Thieves

A Novel

Among Thieves

They thought they could cover up what an out-of-control trader at a Manhattan brokerage firm did to Olivia Sanchez. She worked hard, played by the rules, but so what? Blackball her from the industry and be done with her. Who's going to stop them? Nobody, until Olivia turns to her cousin Manny, an ex-con and ex-gang leader whose first reaction is to take care of the arrogant bastard who hurt his cousin—permanently. His partner, James Beck, part of a tight clique of ex-cons based in Brooklyn's Red Hook, convinces Manny to hold off. Things can be complicated in the real world. But even the savvy Beck has no idea what's really going on. There's much more at stake than Beck imagines, starting with enough money to ignite a level of ruthless greed that can wipe Beck and his partners off the face of the earth. It's tens of millions of dollars, connected to arms dealing for a clandestine U.S. agency. Beck and his loyal band are forced into an escalating nonstop war against an arms dealer, war criminals, Russian mobsters, and even the NYPD. The only way to stay out of prison and survive is to outsmart, outfight, never concede, and ultimately rob their enemies of the source of their power: 116 million dollars.

Privateer

Privateer

Privateer by Tim Severin is the fourth swashbuckling adventure in the Pirate series. Hector Lynch and his companions are in the Caribbean, diving to plunder a wreck on the notorious Vipers reef, when they are spotted by a passing Spanish ship. To prevent news of their activities getting out, they cripple the Spanish vessel by burning her sails - an act of piracy - and then head for their base in Tortuga. There Hector's wife Maria awaits, for she and Hector are planning a better life for themselves - this time on the right side of the law. But a chance encounter at sea means that Hector and his comrades run afoul of Laurens de Graff - renowned swashbuckling mercenary captain - now in command of a royal French frigate. Slipping from de Graff's clutches, Hector and his friends are cast away on the tiny desert island, Salt Tortuga. Hector tries desperately to make his way back to Maria, meanwhile she has decided to undertake the hazardous journey to find him. Hector's adventures and Maria's tenacity lead them towards Port Royal in Jamaica - known as the wickedest city on earth. And Hector, accused of piracy, once more enters a world he had sworn to leave behind.

Galaxy's Edge

Galaxy's Edge

The Edge - the farthest solar system of the civilized galaxy. Its one inhabitable planet, Tallyra, is unconventional, ungovernable an teeming with crooks - and it's where young Jaxie Cade heads when he breaks jail with stolen information that could lead him to the fabled Phantom Planet, the dream of every Edge-worlder... But trouble is right behind Cade: trouble from the alien Occians, from whom Cade stole the information; and from Raishe - a bounty-hunter and combat-ace determined to drag Cade back to prison. And that's before the Commonwealth Intelligence Agency turns up - or the evil, mysterious criminal, Acs, takes a hand...

By the Knife

By the Knife

Set in the Caribbean and the West Coast of Africa, By the Knife details the struggle between two very different men. John Carter is a product of the London slums. Put into male prostitution by his mother at the age of nine, he turns to murder when attacked outside a tavern in the docks. For the rest of his life, he takes pleasure in viciously torturing his victims before killing them. He runs away to sea to escape the law and progresses to piracy. Having stolen a large amount of Spanish gold, he is sought by the English Navy. David Fletcher is the much-loved son of a country school teacher. He is sent into the Navy on his father’s death and progresses to Lieutenant whilst growing up amongst the problems of shipboard life in a time of war. He first meets Carter when, during a struggle on the deck of a merchant ship, Carter slashes his chest with a knife. By the Knife is a traditional adventure story that harks back to an age of pirates and sailing. This naval novel will appeal particularly to those who enjoy pirate adventure stories.

The Oath

The Oath

1326. In an England riven with conflict, knight and peasant alike find their lives turned upside downby the warring factions of Edward II, with his hated favourite, Hugh le Despenser, and Edward's estranged queen Isabella and her lover, Sir Roger Mortimer. Yet even in such times the brutal slaughter of an entire family, right down to a babe in arms, still has the power to shock. Three further murders follow, and bailiff Simon Puttock is drawn into a web of intrigue, vengeance, power and greed as Roger Mortimer charges him to investigate the killings. Michael Jecks brilliantly evokes the turmoil of fourteenth-century England, as his well-loved characters Simon Puttock and Sir Baldwin de Furnshill strive to maintain the principles of loyalty and truth.

The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-First Annual Collection

The Year's Best Science Fiction: Twenty-First Annual Collection

The stories in this collection imaginatively take readers far across the universe, into the very core of their beings, to the realm of the Gods, and to the moment just after now. Included are the works of masters of the form and the bright new talents of tomorrow. This book is a valuable resource in addition to serving as the single best place in the universe to find stories that stir the imagination and the heart.

The Hope Vendetta

A Novel

The Hope Vendetta

A Simon & Schuster eBook. Simon & Schuster has a great book for every reader.