The Electric Hotel

The Electric Hotel winds through the nascent days of cinema in Paris and Fort Lee, N.J.—America’s first movie town—and on the battlefields of Belgium during World War I. A sweeping work of historical fiction, it shifts between past and present as it tells the story of the rise and fall of a prodigious film studio and one man’s doomed obsession with all that passes in front of the viewfinder.

The Last Painting
of Sara de Vos

In 1631, Sara de Vos becomes the first woman to be admitted as a master painter to the Guild of St. Luke in Holland. Three hundred years later, At the Edge of a Wood, her haunting winter scene of a girl watching skaters at dusk, is her only surviving work. It hangs in the bedroom of a Park Avenue coop of a wealthy Manhattanite, a descendant of the original owner. Meanwhile, in the grungier reaches of Brooklyn, an Australian art history grad student struggling to stay afloat in New York agrees to paint a forgery of the landscape for a dubious art dealer. Half a century later, she's a prominent curator back home in Sydney, mounting an exhibition of female Dutch painters of the Golden Age. Both versions of At the Edge of a Wood by Sara de Vos are en route to her museum, threatening to unravel her life and reputation.

Bright &
Distant Shores
“They were showing the savages on the rooftop—that was the word at
the curbstone.”

Chicago, 1897. An obsessive collector and insurance magnate commissions the world’s tallest building. Determined to compete with Marshall Field’s recent donation of $1 million to found the Field Museum, the tycoon funds a private collecting voyage into the Pacific. In addition to bringing back a bounty of artifacts, the voyage also brings back a Melanesian brother and sister to appear in the insurance company’s rooftop ethnographic exhibition. Bright and Distant Shores chronicles life in Chicago after the World’s Fair and the collision course between commercial America and the tribal Pacific.

The Beautiful

Nathan Nelson is the average son of a genius. His father, a physicist of small renown, has prodded him toward greatness from an early age—enrolling him in whiz-kid summer camps and teaching him college algebra. But despite Samuel Nelson’s efforts, Nathan remains ordinary. Then, when he’s 17, Nathan develops synesthesia, a blending of the senses, following a near-fatal car accident. His altered brain allows him to memorize vast amounts of information. At Samuel’s insistence, Nathan attends the Brook-Mills Institute for Talent Development and lives alongside savants, prodigies, and neurological misfits. He begins to unravel the mysteries of his new gift and to make peace with the crushing weight of his father’s expectations.

The Mercury Visions
of Louis Daguerre

When the vision came, he was in the bathtub. So begins the madness of Louis Daguerre. In 1847, after a decade of using poisonous mercury vapors to cure his daguerreotype images, his mind is plagued by delusions. Believing that the world will end within one year, Daguerre creates his “Doomsday List”—ten items he must photograph before the final day. The list includes a portrait of Isobel Le Fournier, a woman he has always loved but not spoken to in half a century.