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Where the Money Is: True Tales from the Bank Robbery Capital of the World

by Gordon Dillow William J. Rehder

"With the style and pacing of a good novel...should become a standard in the genre."--Publishers Weekly FBI Special Agent William J. Rehder, the man CBS News once described as "America's secret weapon in the war against bank robbers," chronicles the lives and crimes of bank robbers in today's Los Angeles who are as colorful and exciting as the legends of long ago. The mild-mannered antiques dealer who robbed more banks than anyone else in history. The modern Fagin who took a page out of Dickens and had children rob banks for him. The misfit bodybuilders who used a movie as a blueprint for a spree of violent robberies. In a fast-paced, hard-edged style that reads like a novel, Where the Money Is carries us through these stories and more--all within a pistol shot of Hollywood, all true-life tales as vivid as anything on the big screen.

All The Wild That Remains: Edward Abbey, Wallace Stegner, and the American West

by David Gessner

An homage to the West and to two great writers who set the standard for all who celebrate and defend it. Archetypal wild man Edward Abbey and proper, dedicated Wallace Stegner left their footprints all over the western landscape. Now, award-winning nature writer David Gessner follows the ghosts of these two remarkable writer-environmentalists from Stegner's birthplace in Saskatchewan to the site of Abbey's pilgrimages to Arches National Park in Utah, braiding their stories and asking how they speak to the lives of all those who care about the West. These two great westerners had very different ideas about what it meant to love the land and try to care for it, and they did so in distinctly different styles. Boozy, lustful, and irascible, Abbey was best known as the author of the novel The Monkey Wrench Gang (and also of the classic nature memoir Desert Solitaire), famous for spawning the idea of guerrilla actions--known to admirers as "monkeywrenching" and to law enforcement as domestic terrorism--to disrupt commercial exploitation of western lands. By contrast, Stegner, a buttoned-down, disciplined, faithful family man and devoted professor of creative writing, dedicated himself to working through the system to protect western sites such as Dinosaur National Monument in Colorado. In a region beset by droughts and fires, by fracking and drilling, and by an ever-growing population that seems to be in the process of loving the West to death, Gessner asks: how might these two farseeing environmental thinkers have responded to the crisis? Gessner takes us on an inspiring, entertaining journey as he renews his own commitment to cultivating a meaningful relationship with the wild, confronting American overconsumption, and fighting environmental injustice--all while reawakening the thrill of the words of his two great heroes.

Misbehaving: The Making of Behavioral Economics

by Richard H. Thaler

Get ready to change the way you think about economics. Richard H. Thaler has spent his career studying the radical notion that the central agents in the economy are humans--predictable, error-prone individuals. Misbehaving is his arresting, frequently hilarious account of the struggle to bring an academic discipline back down to earth--and change the way we think about economics, ourselves, and our world. Traditional economics assumes rational actors. Early in his research, Thaler realized these Spock-like automatons were nothing like real people. Whether buying a clock radio, selling basketball tickets, or applying for a mortgage, we all succumb to biases and make decisions that deviate from the standards of rationality assumed by economists. In other words, we misbehave. More importantly, our misbehavior has serious consequences. Dismissed at first by economists as an amusing sideshow, the study of human miscalculations and their effects on markets now drives efforts to make better decisions in our lives, our businesses, and our governments. Coupling recent discoveries in human psychology with a practical understanding of incentives and market behavior, Thaler enlightens readers about how to make smarter decisions in an increasingly mystifying world. He reveals how behavioral economic analysis opens up new ways to look at everything from household finance to assigning faculty offices in a new building, to TV game shows, the NFL draft, and businesses like Uber. Laced with antic stories of Thaler's spirited battles with the bastions of traditional economic thinking, Misbehaving is a singular look into profound human foibles. When economics meets psychology, the implications for individuals, managers, and policy makers are both profound and entertaining.

Target Tokyo: Jimmy Doolittle and the Raid That Avenged Pearl Harbor

by James M. Scott

The dramatic account of one of America's most celebrated--and controversial--military campaigns: the Doolittle Raid. The dramatic account of one of America's most celebrated--and controversial--military campaigns: the Doolittle Raid. In December 1941, as American forces tallied the dead at Pearl Harbor, President Franklin Roosevelt gathered with his senior military counselors to plan an ambitious counterstrike against the heart of the Japanese Empire: Tokyo. Four months later, on April 18, 1942, sixteen U.S. Army bombers under the command of daredevil pilot Jimmy Doolittle lifted off from the deck of the USS Hornet on a one-way mission to pummel the enemy's factories, refineries, and dockyards and then escape to Free China. For Roosevelt, the raid was a propaganda victory, a potent salve to heal a wounded nation. In Japan, outraged over the deaths of innocent civilians--including children--military leaders launched an ill-fated attempt to seize Midway that would turn the tide of the war. But it was the Chinese who suffered the worst, victims of a retaliatory campaign by the Japanese Army that claimed an estimated 250,000 lives and saw families drowned in wells, entire towns burned, and communities devastated by bacteriological warfare. At the center of this incredible story is Doolittle, the son of an Alaskan gold prospector, a former boxer, and brilliant engineer who earned his doctorate from MIT. Other fascinating characters populate this gripping narrative, including Chiang Kai-shek, Lieutenant General Joseph "Vinegar Joe" Stilwell, and the feisty Vice Admiral William "Bull" Halsey Jr. Here, too, are indelible portraits of the young pilots, navigators, and bombardiers, many of them little more than teenagers, who raised their hands to volunteer for a mission from which few expected to return. Most of the bombers ran out of fuel and crashed. Captured raiders suffered torture and starvation in Japan's notorious POW camps. Others faced a harrowing escape across China--via boat, rickshaw, and foot--with the Japanese Army in pursuit. Based on scores of never-before-published records drawn from archives across four continents as well as new interviews with survivors, Target Tokyo is World War II history of the highest order: a harrowing adventure story that also serves as a pivotal reexamination of one of America's most daring military operations.

Beale Street Dynasty: Sex, Song, and the Struggle for the Soul of Memphis

by Preston Lauterbach

The vivid history of Beale Street--a lost world of swaggering musicians, glamorous madams, and ruthless politicians--and the battle for the soul of Memphis. Following the Civil War, Beale Street in Memphis, Tennessee, thrived as a cauldron of sex and song, violence and passion. But out of this turmoil emerged a center of black progress, optimism, and cultural ferment. Preston Lauterbach tells this vivid, fascinating story through the multigenerational saga of a family whose ambition, race pride, and moral complexity indelibly shaped the city that would loom so large in American life. Robert Church, who would become "the South's first black millionaire," was a mulatto slave owned by his white father. Having survived a deadly race riot in 1866, Church constructed an empire of vice in the booming river town. He made a fortune with saloons, gambling, and--shockingly--white prostitution. But he also nurtured the militant journalism of Ida B. Wells and helped revolutionize American music through the work of composer W.C. Handy, the man who claimed to have invented the blues. In the face of Jim Crow, the Church fortune helped fashion the most powerful black political organization of the early twentieth century. Robert and his son, Bob Jr., bought and sold property, founded a bank, and created a park and auditorium for their people finer than the places whites had forbidden them to attend. However, the Church family operated through a tense arrangement with the Democrat machine run by the notorious E. H. "Boss" Crump, who stole elections and controlled city hall. The battle between this black dynasty and the white political machine would define the future of Memphis. Brilliantly researched and swiftly plotted, Beale Street Dynasty offers a captivating account of one of America's iconic cities--by one of our most talented narrative historians.

Where the Dead Pause, and the Japanese Say Goodbye: A Journey

by Marie Mutsuki Mockett

How does one cope with overwhelming grief? Marie Mutsuki Mockett's family owns a Buddhist temple 25 miles from the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant. In March 2011, after the earthquake and tsunami, radiation levels prohibited the burial of her Japanese grandfather's bones. As Japan mourned thousands of people lost in the disaster, Mockett also grieved for her American father, who had died unexpectedly. Seeking consolation, Mockett is guided by a colorful cast of Zen priests and ordinary Japanese who perform rituals that disturb, haunt, and finally uplift her. Her journey leads her into the radiation zone in an intricate white hazmat suit; to Eiheiji, a school for Zen Buddhist monks; on a visit to a Crab Lady and Fuzzy-Headed Priest's temple on Mount Doom; and into the "thick dark" of the subterranean labyrinth under Kiyomizu temple, among other twists and turns. From the ecstasy of a cherry blossom festival in the radiation zone to the ghosts inhabiting chopsticks, Mockett writes of both the earthly and the sublime with extraordinary sensitivity. Her unpretentious and engaging voice makes her the kind of companion a reader wants to stay with wherever she goes, even into the heart of grief itself.

The Brontë Cabinet: Three Lives in Nine Objects

by Deborah Lutz

An intimate portrait of the lives and writings of the Brontë sisters, drawn from the objects they possessed. In this unique and lovingly detailed biography of a literary family that has enthralled readers for nearly two centuries, Victorian literature scholar Deborah Lutz illuminates the complex and fascinating lives of the Brontës through the things they wore, stitched, wrote on, and inscribed. By unfolding the histories of the meaningful objects in their family home in Haworth, Lutz immerses readers in a nuanced re-creation of the sisters' daily lives while moving us chronologically forward through the major biographical events: the death of their mother and two sisters, the imaginary kingdoms of their childhood writing, their time as governesses, and their determined efforts to make a mark on the literary world. From the miniature books they made as children to the blackthorn walking sticks they carried on solitary hikes on the moors, each personal possession opens a window onto the sisters' world, their beloved fiction, and the Victorian era. A description of the brass collar worn by Emily's bull mastiff, Keeper, leads to a series of entertaining anecdotes about the influence of the family's dogs on their writing and about the relationship of Victorians to their pets in general. The sisters' portable writing desks prove to have played a crucial role in their writing lives: it was Charlotte's snooping in Emily's desk that led to the sisters' first publication in print, followed later by the publication of Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. Charlotte's letters provide insight into her relationships, both innocent and illicit, including her relationship with the older professor to whom she wrote passionately. And the bracelet Charlotte had made of Anne and Emily's intertwined hair bears witness to her profound grief after their deaths. Lutz captivatingly shows the Brontës anew by bringing us deep inside the physical world in which they lived and from which their writings took inspiration.

The American Lover

by Rose Tremain

A seductive new collection from the author of "varied, engrossing, and . . . astonishing" fiction (Richard Eder, Boston Globe). Trapped in a London apartment, Beth remembers a transgressive love affair in 1960s Paris. The most famous writer in Russia takes his last breath in a stationmaster's cottage, miles from Moscow. A young woman who is about to marry a rich aristocrat instead begins a torrid relationship with a construction worker. A father, finally free of his daughter's demands, embarks on a long swim from his Canadian lakeside retreat. A middle-aged woman cares for her injured mother at Christmas. And in the grandest house of all, Danni the Polish housekeeper catches the eye of an enigmatic visitor, Daphne du Maurier. Rose Tremain awakens the senses in this magnificent and diverse collection of short stories. In her precise yet sensuous style, she lays bare the soul of her characters--the admirable, the embarrassing, the unfulfilled, the sexy, and the adorable--to uncover a dazzling range of human emotions and desires.

Six Capitals, or Can Accountants Save the Planet?: Rethinking Capitalism for the Twenty-First Century

by Jane Gleeson-White

A timely and fascinating account of the revolution going on in the world of finance from the acclaimed author of Double Entry. This is the story of a twenty-first-century revolution being led by the most unlikely of rebels: accountants. Only the second revolution in accounting since double-entry bookkeeping began, it is of seismic proportions, driven by the 2008 financial crash and our ongoing environmental crisis. The changes it will wreak are profound and far-reaching and not only will transform the way the world does business but also will alter the nature of capitalism. While the wealth of nations and corporations has been vital to the global economy, increasingly the world is coming to realize that such endless growth is limited by the earth's resources and comes at a huge price to the planet and to human well-being. It simply cannot be sustained. This revolution demands that we go beyond merely accounting for traditional financial and industrial capital and take account of the benefits and detriments to the natural world and society. It urges us to include four new categories of wealth: intellectual (such as intellectual property), human (skills, productivity, and health), social and relationship (shared norms and values), and natural (environment). Making them part of our financial statements and GDP figures may be the only way to address the many calamities we face. Just two years ago this revolution seemed idealistic and unlikely. Today it is quickly unfolding. In 2012, the sea-change year, two key initiatives took root: an international movement to transform how corporate accounting is calculated and the rise of incorporating the effects on the environment to the accounting of national and global economies. Six Capitals tells the story of this coming new age in capitalism, evaluating its promise and the disaster that lies ahead if it is not implemented.

Beyond: Our Future in Space

by Chris Impey

Beyond dares to imagine a fantastic future for humans in space--and then reminds us that we're already there. Human exploration has been an unceasing engine of technological progress, from the first homo sapiens to leave our African cradle to a future in which mankind promises to settle another world. Beyond tells the epic story of humanity leaving home--and how humans will soon thrive in the vast universe beyond the earth. A dazzling and propulsive voyage through space and time, Beyond reveals how centuries of space explorers--from the earliest stargazers to today's cutting-edge researchers--all draw inspiration from an innate human emotion: wanderlust. This urge to explore led us to multiply around the globe, and it can be traced in our DNA. Today, the urge to discover manifests itself in jaw-dropping ways: plans for space elevators poised to replace rockets at a fraction of the cost; experiments in suspending and reanimating life for ultra-long-distance travel; prototypes for solar sails that coast through space on the momentum of microwaves released from the Earth. With these ventures, private companies and entrepreneurs have the potential to outpace NASA as the leaders in a new space race. Combining expert knowledge of astronomy and avant-garde technology, Chris Impey guides us through the heady possibilities for the next century of exploration. In twenty years, a vibrant commercial space industry will be operating. In thirty years, there will be small but viable colonies on the Moon and Mars. In fifty years, mining technology will have advanced enough to harvest resources from asteroids. In a hundred years, a cohort of humans born off-Earth will come of age without ever visiting humanity's home planet. This is not the stuff of science fiction but rather the logical extension of already available technologies. Beyond shows that space exploration is not just the domain of technocrats, but the birthright of everyone and the destiny of generations to come. To continue exploration is to ensure our survival. Outer space, a limitless unknown, awaits us.

Cowed: The Hidden Impact of 93 Million Cows on America’s Health, Economy, Politics, Culture, and Environment

by Denis Hayes Gail Boyer Hayes

From leading ecology advocates, a revealing look at our dependence on cows and a passionate appeal for sustainable living. In Cowed, globally recognized environmentalists Denis and Gail Boyer Hayes offer a revealing analysis of how our beneficial, centuries-old relationship with bovines has evolved into one that now endangers us. Long ago, cows provided food and labor to settlers taming the wild frontier and helped the loggers, ranchers, and farmers who shaped the country's landscape. Our society is built on the backs of bovines who indelibly stamped our culture, politics, and economics. But our national herd has doubled in size over the past hundred years to 93 million, with devastating consequences for the country's soil and water. Our love affair with dairy and hamburgers doesn't help either: eating one pound of beef produces a greater carbon footprint than burning a gallon of gasoline. Denis and Gail Hayes begin their story by tracing the co-evolution of cows and humans, starting with majestic horned aurochs, before taking us through the birth of today's feedlot farms and the threat of mad cow disease. The authors show how cattle farming today has depleted America's largest aquifer, created festering lagoons of animal waste, and drastically increased methane production. In their quest to find fresh solutions to our bovine problem, the authors take us to farms across the country from Vermont to Washington. They visit worm ranchers who compost cow waste, learn that feeding cows oregano yields surprising benefits, talk to sustainable farmers who care for their cows while contributing to their communities, and point toward a future in which we eat less, but better, beef. In a deeply researched, engagingly personal narrative, Denis and Gail Hayes provide a glimpse into what we can do now to provide a better future for cows, humans, and the world we inhabit. They show how our relationship with cows is part of the story of America itself.

Healing Yoga: Proven Postures to Treat Twenty Common Ailments—from Backache to Bone Loss, Shoulder Pain to Bunions, and More

by Loren Fishman

"To many of his patients [Dr. Fishman] is a miracle worker."--Jane E. Brody, New York Times Healing Yoga unites medical knowledge with the practice of yoga to help treat twenty common conditions, including headache, weight gain, the common cold, scoliosis, PMS, stress, depression, and eight different types of back pain. Dr. Fishman shares techniques he has invented, refined, and validated with thousands of patients, including detailed pose instructions and accompanying photographs. He walks readers through not only healing but also diagnosis of specific medical conditions, especially back pain, when there is more than one source of trouble. Suitable for both beginners and experienced yogis, this book is an at-home guide to a renowned doctor's expertise.

The China Challenge: Shaping the Choices of a Rising Power

by Thomas J. Christensen

This compelling assessment of U.S.-China relations is essential reading for anyone interested in the future of the globalized world. Many see China as a rival superpower to the United States and imagine the country's rise to be a threat to U.S. leadership in Asia and beyond. Thomas J. Christensen argues against this zero-sum vision. Instead, he describes a new paradigm in which the real challenge lies in dissuading China from regional aggression while encouraging the country to contribute to the global order. Drawing on decades of scholarship and experience as a senior diplomat, Christensen offers a compelling new assessment of U.S.-China relations that is essential reading for anyone interested in the future of the globalized world. The China Challenge shows why China is nowhere near powerful enough to be considered a global "peer competitor" of the United States, but it is already strong enough to destabilize East Asia and to influence economic and political affairs worldwide. Despite China's impressive achievements, the Chinese Communist Party faces enormous challenges. Christensen shows how nationalism and the threat of domestic instability influence the party's decisions on issues like maritime sovereignty disputes, global financial management, control of the Internet, climate change, and policies toward Taiwan and Hong Kong. China benefits enormously from the current global order and has no intention of overthrowing it; but that is not enough. China's active cooperation is essential to global governance. Never before has a developing country like China been asked to contribute so much to ensure international stability. If China obstructs international efforts to confront nuclear proliferation, civil conflicts, financial instability, and climate change, those efforts will falter, but even if China merely declines to support such efforts, the problems will grow vastly more complicated. Analyzing U.S.-China policy since the end of the Cold War, Christensen articulates a balanced strategic approach that explains why we should aim not to block China's rise but rather to help shape its choices so as to deter regional aggression and encourage China's active participation in international initiatives that benefit both nations.

Between You & Me: Confessions of a Comma Queen

by Mary Norris

The most irreverent and helpful book on language since the #1 New York Times bestseller Eats, Shoots & Leaves. Mary Norris has spent more than three decades in The New Yorker's copy department, maintaining its celebrated high standards. Now she brings her vast experience, good cheer, and finely sharpened pencils to help the rest of us in a boisterous language book as full of life as it is of practical advice. Between You & Me features Norris's laugh-out-loud descriptions of some of the most common and vexing problems in spelling, punctuation, and usage--comma faults, danglers, "who" vs. "whom," "that" vs. "which," compound words, gender-neutral language--and her clear explanations of how to handle them. Down-to-earth and always open-minded, she draws on examples from Charles Dickens, Emily Dickinson, Henry James, and the Lord's Prayer, as well as from The Honeymooners, The Simpsons, David Foster Wallace, and Gillian Flynn. She takes us to see a copy of Noah Webster's groundbreaking Blue-Back Speller, on a quest to find out who put the hyphen in Moby-Dick, on a pilgrimage to the world's only pencil-sharpener museum, and inside the hallowed halls of The New Yorker and her work with such celebrated writers as Pauline Kael, Philip Roth, and George Saunders. Readers--and writers--will find in Norris neither a scold nor a softie but a wise and witty new friend in love with language and alive to the glories of its use in America, even in the age of autocorrect and spell-check. As Norris writes, "The dictionary is a wonderful thing, but you can't let it push you around."

Oracle: Poems

by Cate Marvin

A witty and elegiac new collection from the author of "exhilarating, fierce [and] powerful" verse (Robert Pinsky, Washington Post). The speakers of Oracle occupy the outer-borough cityscape of New York's Staten Island, where they move through worlds glittering with refuse and peopled by ghosts--of a dead lover, of a friend lost to suicide, of a dog with glistening eyes. Marvin's haunting, passionate poems explore themes of loss, of the vulnerability of womanhood in a world hostile to it, and of the fraught, strangely compelling landscape of adolescence.

100 Essential Things You Didn't Know You Didn't Know about Math and the Arts

by John D. Barrow

A fascinating exploration of math's connection to the arts. At first glance, the worlds of math and the arts might not seem like comfortable neighbors. But as mathematician John D. Barrow points out, they have a strong and natural affinity--after all, math is the study of all patterns, and the world of the arts is rich with pattern. Barrow whisks us through 100 thought-provoking and often whimsical intersections between math and many arts, from the golden ratios of Mondrian's rectangles and the curious fractal-like nature of Pollock's drip paintings to ballerinas' gravity-defying leaps and the next generation of monkeys on typewriters tackling Shakespeare. For those of us with our feet planted more firmly on the ground, Barrow also wields everyday equations to reveal how many guards are needed in an art gallery or where you should stand to look at sculptures. From music and drama to literature and the visual arts, Barrow's witty and accessible observations are sure to spark the imaginations of math nerds and art aficionados alike.

Women After All: Sex, Evolution, and the End of Male Supremacy

by Melvin Konner

A lively, richly informed argument for the natural superiority of women from the acclaimed author of The Tangled Wing. There is a human genetic fluke that is surprisingly common, due to a change in a key pair of chromosomes. In the normal condition the two look the same, but in this disorder one is malformed and shrunken beyond recognition. The result is a shortened life span, higher mortality at all ages, an inability to reproduce, premature hair loss, and brain defects variously resulting in attention deficit, hyperactivity, conduct disorder, hypersexuality, and an enormous excess of both outward and self-directed aggression. It is called maleness. In Women After All, Melvin Konner traces the arc of evolution to explain the relationships between women and men. With patience and wit he explores the knotty question of whether men are necessary in the biological destiny of the human race. He draws on multiple, colorful examples from the natural world--such as the mating habits of the octopus, black widow, angler fish, and jacana--and argues that maleness in humans is hardly necessary to the survival of the species. In characteristically humorous and engaging prose, Konner sheds light on our biologically different identities, while noting the poignant exceptions that challenge the male/female divide. We meet hunter-gatherers such as those in Botswana, whose culture gave women a prominent place, invented the working mother, and respected women's voices around the fire. Recent human history has upset this balance, as a dense world of war fostered extreme male dominance. But our species has been recovering over the past two centuries, and an unstoppable move toward equality is afoot. It will not be the end of men, but it will be the end of male supremacy and a better, wiser world for women and men alike. Provocative and richly informed, Women After All is bound to be controversial across the sexes.

Thieves of State: Why Corruption Threatens Global Security

by Sarah Chayes

A former adviser to the Joint Chiefs of Staff explains how government's oldest problem is its greatest destabilizing force. The world is blowing up. Every day a new blaze seems to ignite: the bloody implosion of Iraq and Syria; the East-West standoff in Ukraine; abducted schoolgirls in northern Nigeria. Is there some thread tying these frightening international security crises together? In a riveting account that weaves history with fast-moving reportage and insider accounts from the Afghanistan war, Sarah Chayes identifies the unexpected link: corruption. Since the late 1990s, corruption has reached such an extent that some governments resemble glorified criminal gangs, bent solely on their own enrichment. These kleptocrats drive indignant populations to extremes--ranging from revolution to militant puritanical religion. Chayes plunges readers into some of the most venal environments on earth and examines what emerges: Afghans returning to the Taliban, Egyptians overthrowing the Mubarak government (but also redesigning Al-Qaeda), and Nigerians embracing both radical evangelical Christianity and the Islamist terror group Boko Haram. In many such places, rigid moral codes are put forth as an antidote to the collapse of public integrity. The pattern, moreover, pervades history. Through deep archival research, Chayes reveals that canonical political thinkers such as John Locke and Machiavelli, as well as the great medieval Islamic statesman Nizam al-Mulk, all named corruption as a threat to the realm. In a thrilling argument connecting the Protestant Reformation to the Arab Spring, Thieves of State presents a powerful new way to understand global extremism. And it makes a compelling case that we must confront corruption, for it is a cause--not a result--of global instability.

Eye of the Beholder: Johannes Vermeer, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek, and the Reinvention of Seeing

by Laura J. Snyder

The remarkable story of how an artist and a scientist in seventeenth-century Holland transformed the way we see the world. On a summer day in 1674, in the small Dutch city of Delft, Antoni van Leeuwenhoek--a cloth salesman, local bureaucrat, and self-taught natural philosopher--gazed through a tiny lens set into a brass holder and discovered a never-before imagined world of microscopic life. At the same time, in a nearby attic, the painter Johannes Vermeer was using another optical device, a camera obscura, to experiment with light and create the most luminous pictures ever beheld. "See for yourself!" was the clarion call of the 1600s. Scientists peered at nature through microscopes and telescopes, making the discoveries in astronomy, physics, chemistry, and anatomy that ignited the Scientific Revolution. Artists investigated nature with lenses, mirrors, and camera obscuras, creating extraordinarily detailed paintings of flowers and insects, and scenes filled with realistic effects of light, shadow, and color. By extending the reach of sight the new optical instruments prompted the realization that there is more than meets the eye. But they also raised questions about how we see and what it means to see. In answering these questions, scientists and artists in Delft changed how we perceive the world. In Eye of the Beholder, Laura J. Snyder transports us to the streets, inns, and guildhalls of seventeenth-century Holland, where artists and scientists gathered, and to their studios and laboratories, where they mixed paints and prepared canvases, ground and polished lenses, examined and dissected insects and other animals, and invented the modern notion of seeing. With charm and narrative flair Snyder brings Vermeer and Van Leeuwenhoek--and the men and women around them--vividly to life. The story of these two geniuses and the transformation they engendered shows us why we see the world--and our place within it--as we do today.

Domesticated: Evolution in a Man-Made World

by Richard C. Francis

Without our domesticated plants and animals, human civilization as we know it would not exist. We would still be living at subsistence level as hunter-gatherers if not for domestication. It is no accident that the cradle of civilization--the Middle East--is where sheep, goats, pigs, cattle, and cats commenced their fatefully intimate association with humans. Before the agricultural revolution, there were perhaps 10 million humans on earth. Now there are more than 7 billion of us. Our domesticated species have also thrived, in stark contrast to their wild ancestors. In a human-constructed environment--or man-made world--it pays to be domesticated. Domestication is an evolutionary process first and foremost. What most distinguishes domesticated animals from their wild ancestors are genetic alterations resulting in tameness, the capacity to tolerate close human proximity. But selection for tameness often results in a host of seemingly unrelated by-products, including floppy ears, skeletal alterations, reduced aggression, increased sociality, and reduced brain size. It's a package deal known as the domestication syndrome. Elements of the domestication syndrome can be found in every domesticated species--not only cats, dogs, pigs, sheep, cattle, and horses but also more recent human creations, such as domesticated camels, reindeer, and laboratory rats. That domestication results in this suite of changes in such a wide variety of mammals is a fascinating evolutionary story, one that sheds much light on the evolutionary process in general. We humans, too, show signs of the domestication syndrome, which some believe was key to our evolutionary success. By this view, human evolution parallels the evolution of dogs from wolves, in particular. A natural storyteller, Richard C. Francis weaves history, archaeology, and anthropology to create a fascinating narrative while seamlessly integrating the most cutting-edge ideas in twenty-first-century biology, from genomics to evo-devo.

My Avant-Garde Education: A Memoir

by Bernard Cooper

A wry and beautifully observed memoir about coming of age in the era of conceptual art. Growing up in the suburbs--confused about his sexuality, about his consumer-oriented world, about the death of his older brother--Bernard Cooper falls in love with Pop art and sets off for the California Institute of the Arts, the center of the burgeoning field of conceptual art, in this beguiling memoir. The most famous, and infamous, artists of the time drift through the place, including Allan Kaprow and John Baldessari, not to mention the student who phones the Identi-Kit division of the Los Angeles Police Department and has them make a composite drawing of the Mona Lisa. My Avant-Garde Education is at once an artist's coming-of-age story and a personal chronicle of the era of conceptual art, from a writer "of uncommon subtlety and nuance" (David Ulin, Los Angeles Times). It is a record of the wonders and follies of a certain era in art history, always aware that awakening to art is, for a young person, inseparable from awakening to the ever-shifting nature of the self.

The Change Book: How Things Happen

by Roman Tschäppeler Mikael Krogerus

The world is in constant flux--this handy book helps make sense of it. From business cycles to budding trends, models make sense of a world that never stops spinning. The Change Book delivers 52 simple and effective models--each with a visual component--about how change happens. Drawing on myth-busting theories and breakthrough discoveries from thinkers of all stripes, Mikael Krogerus and Roman Tschäppeler, authors of the international bestseller The Decision Book, apply their characteristic wit and knack for the succinct to show what fuels the internet, why empires rise and fall, and why change hurts--but ultimately helps us grow. Whether you're starting a new job, lobbying for a cause, or wondering how Jesus would invest, The Change Book is your clever guide through transformations in business, culture, technology, relationships, and more.

All the Wrong Places: A Life Lost and Found

by Philip Connors

The prize-winning author of Fire Season returns with the heartrending story of his troubled years before finding solace in the wilderness. In his debut Fire Season, Philip Connors recounted with lyricism, wisdom, and grace his decade as a fire lookout high above remote New Mexico. Now he tells the story of what made solitude on the mountain so attractive: the years he spent reeling in the wake of a family tragedy. At the age of twenty-three, Connors was a young man on the make. He'd left behind the Minnesota pig farm on which he'd grown up and the brother with whom he'd never been especially close. He had a magazine job lined up in New York City and a future unfolding exactly as he'd hoped. Then one phone call out of the blue changed everything. All the Wrong Places is a searingly honest account of the aftermath of his brother's shocking death, exploring both the pathos and the unlikely humor of a life unmoored by loss. Beginning with the otherworldly beauty of a hot-air-balloon ride over the skies of Albuquerque and ending in the wilderness of the American borderlands, this is the story of a man paying tribute to the dead by unconsciously willing himself into all the wrong places, whether at the copy desk of the Wall Street Journal, the gritty streets of Bed-Stuy in the 1990s, or the smoking rubble of the World Trade Center. With ruthless clarity and a keen sense of the absurd, Connors slowly unmasks the truth about his brother and himself, to devastating effect. Like Cheryl Strayed's Wild, this is a powerful look back at wayward years--and a redemptive story about finding one's rightful home in the world.

The Anticancer Diet: Reduce Cancer Risk Through the Foods You Eat

by David Khayat

With the huge number of studies on nutrition and cancer available, it's impossible for a person to sort through them all to come up with practical recommendations. Now, Dr. David Khayat, a world-renowned oncologist, has done that hard work for you. In this international bestseller, Dr. Khayat provides easy-to-follow--and often surprising--guidelines on what are now known to be the foods most likely to reduce the risk of cancer. For those of a scientific bent, he explains what cancer is and how it develops. Bringing together his own research with that of other major cancer specialists, he breaks down what the studies mean, which ones provide the most solid evidence, and how to use their results in your and your family's diet. Structured by the major food groups--as well as supplements, beverages, and exercise--The Anticancer Diet may surprise you by not disparaging red meat but alerting you to find out the source of your fish and suggesting sole over salmon. While highly recommending commercial pomegranate juice, it cautions people with fair hair and eyes against drinking orange juice. What stage of life a person is at will also affect what they should consume. Pregnant women, older women, men, and children may process foods differently. With numerous easy-to-read charts and tables along with a comprehensive food list at the back of the book, this accessible, user-friendly guide helps readers realize the power in their everyday choices.

Hammer Head: The Making of a Carpenter

by Nina Maclaughlin

A warm and inspiring book for anyone who has ever dreamed of changing tracks: the story of a young woman who quit her desk job to become a carpenter. Nina MacLaughlin spent her twenties working at a Boston newspaper, sitting behind a desk and staring at a screen. Yearning for more tangible work, she applied for a job she saw on Craigslist--Carpenter's Assistant: Women strongly encouraged to apply--despite being a Classics major who couldn't tell a Phillips from a flathead screwdriver. She got the job, and in Hammer Head she tells the rich and entertaining story of becoming a carpenter. Writing with infectious curiosity, MacLaughlin describes the joys and frustrations of making things by hand, reveals the challenges of working as a woman in an occupation that is 99 percent male, and explains how manual labor changed the way she sees the world. We meet her unflappable mentor, Mary, a petite but tough carpenter-sage ("Be smarter than the tools!"), as well as wild demo dudes, foul-mouthed plumbers, grizzled hardware store clerks, and the colorful clients whose homes she and Mary work in. Whisking her readers from job to job--building a wall, remodeling a kitchen, gut-renovating a house--MacLaughlin examines the history of the tools she uses and the virtues and varieties of wood. Throughout, she draws on the wisdom of Ovid, Annie Dillard, Studs Terkel, and Mary Oliver to illuminate her experience of work. And, in a deeply moving climax, MacLaughlin strikes out on her own for the first time to build bookshelves for her own father. Hammer Head is a passionate book full of sweat, swearing, bashed thumbs, and a deep sense of finding real meaning in work and life.

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