Ezra works as a live-in groundskeeper on a celebrity couple´s enormous rental property in Los Angeles. When the magnetic Sybil sets her sights on Ezra and gradually lures him in, he is as conflicted as he is tempted. Then Grant, her husband, approaches Ezra with a different proposal - to monitor Sybil to see if she is having an affair - and he is faced with the formidable challenge in refusing one or the other. And so begins this sexy, mesmerizing novel about Sybil, an actress desperately hoping for the important role that will resurrect her faltering career; Grant, a cunning, self-made movie producer infamous for subterfuge and secrets; and Ezra, the beautiful, troubled young man they employ - a man haunted by the memory and teachings of his mother, the leader of a new-age cult that deifies birds. Over one life-altering week, Sybil casts Ezra as the center of her universe. Together, they fantasize about the new life for both of them, where Sybil directs and stars in a controversial film about the Middle East, and Ezra can finally realize his dream of traveling to photograph exotic birds, a craft he has cultivated in the hummingbird-filled gardens of the property. But when Sybil´s husband Grant discovers their passionate affair, the three are set on a collision course that can only end in violence. In The Hummingbirds, Ross McMeekin captures people yearning for deep connections in a shallow world defined by the twin obsessions of power and beauty. It is a story of love and redemption, of murder and betrayal, and of the darkness that lurks in the heart of Hollywood. 1. Language: English. Narrator: Will Damron. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/pprs/000515/bk_pprs_000515_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.
The Good Spy is Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer Kai Bird’s compelling portrait of the remarkable life and death of one of the most important operatives in CIA history - a man who, had he lived, might have helped heal the rift between Arabs and the West. On April 18, 1983, a bomb exploded outside the American Embassy in Beirut, killing 63 people. The attack was a geopolitical turning point. It marked the beginning of Hezbollah as a political force, but even more important, it eliminated America’s most influential and effective intelligence officer in the Middle East - CIA operative Robert Ames. What set Ames apart from his peers was his extraordinary ability to form deep, meaningful connections with key Arab intelligence figures. Some operatives relied on threats and subterfuge, but Ames worked by building friendships and emphasizing shared values - never more notably than with Yasir Arafat’s charismatic intelligence chief and heir apparent Ali Hassan Salameh (aka ´´The Red Prince´´). Ames’ deepening relationship with Salameh held the potential for a lasting peace. Within a few years, though, both men were killed by assassins, and America’s relations with the Arab world began heading down a path that culminated in 9/11, the War on Terror, and the current fog of mistrust. Bird, who as a child lived in the Beirut Embassy and knew Ames as a neighbor when he was 12 years old, spent years researching The Good Spy. Not only does the book draw on hours of interviews with Ames’ widow, and quotes from hundreds of Ames’ private letters, it’s woven from interviews with scores of current and former American, Israeli, and Palestinian intelligence officers as well as other players in the Middle East ´´Great Game´´. What emerges is a masterpiece-level narrative of the making of a CIA officer, a uniquely insightful history of 20th-century conflict in the Middle East, and an absorbing hour-by-hour account of the Beirut Embas 1. Language: English. Narrator: René Ruiz. Audio sample: http://samples.audible.de/bk/rand/003860/bk_rand_003860_sample.mp3. Digital audiobook in aax.