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"A triumphant success. . . . His prose is confident, clear . . . occasionally perfect." --Dennis Potter, The Times (London) "It is impossible to suppose that this 'Life' will ever be superseded . . . the best literary biography to appear for many years."--John Rothenstein, New York Times "Written with vivacity and scrupulousness. . . . [Michael Holroyd] has a great novelist's sense of the obstinate mystery of the human person."--George Steiner, The New Yorker
"A delightful novel...impossible to resist."--Barbara Kingsolver, Los Angeles Times Book Review Sofia and her fated daughters, Fe, Esperanza, Caridad, and la Loca, endure hardship and enjoy love in the sleepy New Mexico hamlet of Tome, a town teeming with marvels where the comic and the horrific, the real and the supernatural, reside.
"A haunting novel of sexual obsession." --The New York Times Book Review "I have been stalking my husband's lover", claims Terry Spera, the obsessive, humorously edgy narrator of this intelligent and highly erotic tour de force, an auspicious debut novel The Washington Post hailed as "wonderfully impressive." Literally following in the footsteps of the young woman with whom she is certain her husband is having an affair, Terry eventually enters Yvonne's apartment, her closet, her medicine cabinet--and her life. As she strives to maintain a semblance of normalcy with her husband, Mark, a SoHo art dealer, Terry, and the reader, veer from certainty to uncertainty. Is Mark really having an affair? With breathless energy, a deeply engaging voice, and a searing sensuality, Donna Masini illuminates the dim and fragmented terrain of a woman's inner life with the wit and passion of a dazzling literary talent. About Yvonne is a compelling, witty, beautifully written story of New York at the end of this century and of a woman at the end of her rope.
The Doctors' Plague: Germs, Childbed Fever, and the Strange Story of Ignac Semmelweis (Great Discoveries)by Sherwin B. Nuland
"Riveting" (Houston Chronicle), "captivating" (Discover), and "compulsively readable" (San Francisco Chronicle). Surgeon, scholar, best-selling author, Sherwin B. Nuland tells the strange story of Ignác Semmelweis with urgency and the insight gained from his own studies and clinical experience. Ignác Semmelweis is remembered for the now-commonplace notion that doctors must wash their hands before examining patients. In mid-nineteenth-century Vienna, however, this was a subversive idea. With deaths from childbed fever exploding, Semmelweis discovered that doctors themselves were spreading the disease. While his simple reforms worked immediately--childbed fever in Vienna all but disappeared--they brought down upon Semmelweis the wrath of the establishment, and led to his tragic end.
"A masterly quarter-century of commentary on the discipline of American history."--Allen D. Boyer, New York Times Book Review "This book amounts to an intellectual autobiography....These pieces are thus a statement of what I have thought about early Americans during nearly seventy years in their company," writes historian Edmund S. Morgan in the introduction to this landmark collection. The Genuine Article gathers together twenty-five of Morgan's finest essays over forty years, commenting brilliantly on everything from Jamestown to James Madison. In revealing the private lives of "Those Sexy Puritans" and "The Price of Honor" on Southern plantations, The Genuine Article details the daily lives of early Americans, along with "The Great Political Fiction" that continues to this day. As one of our most celebrated historians, Morgan's characteristic insight and penetrating wisdom are not to be missed in this extraordinarily rich portrait of early America and its Founding Fathers.
An illuminating portrait of the nation's earliest--and most passionate--advocate for the total separation of church and state. A classic of its kind, Edmund S. Morgan's Roger Williams skillfully depicts the intellectual life of the man who, after his expulsion in 1635 from the Massachusetts Bay Colony, founded what would become Rhode Island. As Morgan re-creates the evolution of Williams's thoughts on the nature of the church and the state, he captures with characteristic economy and precision the institutions that informed Williams's worldview, from the Protestant church in England to the Massachusetts government in the seventeenth century. In doing so, Morgan reveals the origins of a perennial--and heated--American debate, told through the ideas of one of the most brilliant polemicists on the subject, a man whose mind, as Morgan describes, "drove him to examine accepted ideas and carry them to unacceptable conclusions." Forty years after its first publication, Roger Williams remains essential reading for anyone interested in the church, the state, and the right relation of the two.
"This is cultural history of the first order, and it is liberal and humane history at its very best."--David Cannadine An essential work for anyone who wishes to understand the social history of the nineteenth century, Schnitzler's Century is the culmination of Peter Gay's thirty-five years of scholarship on bourgeois culture and society. Using Arthur Schnitzler, the sexually emboldened Viennese playwright, as his master of ceremonies, Gay offers a brilliant reexamination of the hundred-year period that began with the defeat of Napoleon and concluded with the conflagration of 1914. This is a defining work by one of America's greatest historians.
A passionate and tensely pitched tale of first love and idealism set in the Oregon forests. Julie Prince is a top college student, destined for conventional success. But then she falls in love with Neil, a radical graduate student, and abandons her privileged East Coast life to tree-sit in the forests of Oregon. At first it is a romantic field trip; soon, though, Julie finds herself increasingly moved by the magnificence of the endangered forest and, like Neil, invested in its protection. Eventually pulled into a militant act of sabotage, Julie is forced to reassess her deepest held loyalties and beliefs.
"Kumin writes ... with the clear gaze of a journalist and the ire of an activist.... Filled with love."--Christian Science Monitor Here Maxine Kumin's signature nature poems are shaken up and invigorated by the darker, human realities. Both "delicate and powerful" (Library Journal), she faces with equanimity the disappointments and joys of sixty years of marriage--ending with the unspoken question of "Which of us will go down first."
"A heroically imaginative account of gay metropolitan culture, an elegy and an apologia for a generation."--New York Times Book Review A fierce critical intelligence animates every page of Queer Street. Its sentences are dizzying divagations. The postwar generation of queer New York has found a sophisticated bard singing 'the elders' history' (The New York Times). James McCourt's seminal Queer Street has proven unrivaled in its ability to capture the voices of a mad, bygone era. Beginning with the influx of liberated veterans into downtown New York and barreling through four decades of crisis and triumph up to the era of the floodtide of AIDS, McCourt positions his own exhilarating experience against the whirlwind history of the era. The result is a commanding and persuasive interlocking of personal, intellectual, and social history that will be read, dissected, and honored as the masterpiece it is for decades to come. A Publishers Weekly Best Book of 2003; a Lambda Award finalist.
"Palma's wonderfully readable translation comes close to perfection. I'm tempted to call it a miracle."--X. J. Kennedy Unlike every known translator before him, Michael Palma re-creates Dante's masterpiece in all its dimensions, without emphasizing some aspects over others, rendering Inferno into contemporary American English while maintaining Dante's original triple rhyme scheme. The result is a translation that can be appreciated for its literal faithfulness and beautiful poetic form, accompanied by facing-page Italian and explanatory notes. "A superb translation; highly recommended."--Library Journal "I find Michael Palma's Inferno to be one that I'm having a hard time improving."--Lawrence Ferlinghetti "I think highly of Michael Palma's Inferno....Readers will find it admirably clear and readable."--Richard Wilbur
"Reading Jessica Shattuck's pitch perfect first novel is like spying on the children and grandchildren of John Cheever's Wapshots."--Los Angeles Times This "richly appointed and generously portrayed" (Kirkus Reviews) debut novel tells the story of a WASPy, old-Boston family coming face to face with an America much larger than the one it was born in. Told from five perspectives, the novel spans an explosive week in the life of the Dunlaps, culminating in a series of events that will change their way of life forever. Caroline Dunlap has written off the insular world of the Boston deb parties, golf club luaus, and WASP weddings that she grew up with. But when she reluctantly returns home after her college graduation, she finds that not everything is quite as predictable, or protected, as she had imagined. Her father, the eccentric, puritanical Jack Dunlap, is carrying on stoically after the breakup of his marriage, but he can't stop thinking of Rosita, the family housekeeper he fired almost six months ago. Caroline's little brother, Eliot, is working on a giant papier-mâché diorama of their town-or is he hatching a plan of larger proportions? As the real reason for Rosita's departure is revealed, the novel culminates in a series of events that assault the fragile, sheltered, and arguably obsolete world of the Dunlaps. Opening a window into a family's repressed desires and fears, The Hazards of Good Breeding is a startlingly perceptive comedy of manners that heralds a new writer of dazzling talent.
An inventive new collection by the writer whom Colm Tóibín called "an assured and brilliant voice in Irish poetry." Go Giants, Nick Laird's stunning third volume of poetry, is full of "epic ambition." In a collection that's "easily his most accomplished to date...[Laird] gives everything of himself in a poetry as expansive and thought-provoking as his considered response to an infinitely complicated universe needs it to be" (The Guardian). Laird boldly engages with topics ranging from fatherhood and marriage to mass destruction and the cosmos. Go Giants is a brash, brave, and wildly imaginative new collection. From Go Giants: Go in peace to love and serve the. Go and get help. Go directly to jail. Go down in flames. Go up in smoke. Go for broke. Go tell Aunt Rhody. Go tell the Spartans. Go to hell. Go into detail. Go for the throat.
A groundbreaking anthology containing the work of poets who have witnessed war, imprisonment, torture, and slavery. A companion volume to Against Forgetting, Poetry of Witness is the first anthology to reveal a tradition that runs through English-language poetry. The 300 poems collected here were composed at an extreme of human endurance--while their authors awaited execution, endured imprisonment, fought on the battlefield, or labored on the brink of breakdown or death. All bear witness to historical events and the irresistibility of their impact. Alongside Shakespeare, Milton, and Wordsworth, this volume includes such writers as Anne Askew, tortured and executed for her religious beliefs during the reign of Henry VIII; Phillis Wheatley, abducted by slave traders; Samuel Bamford, present at the Peterloo Massacre in 1819; William Blake, who witnessed the Gordon Riots of 1780; and Samuel Menashe, survivor of the Battle of the Bulge. Poetry of Witness argues that such poets are a perennial feature of human history, and it presents the best of that tradition, proving that their work ranks alongside the greatest in the language.
"This fine version, with David Cronenberg's inspired introduction and the new translator's beguiling afterword, is, I suspect, the most disturbing though the most comforting of all so far; others will follow, but don't hesitate: this is the transforming text for you."--Richard Howard Franz Kafka's 1915 novella of unexplained horror and nightmarish transformation became a worldwide classic and remains a century later one of the most widely read works of fiction in the world. It is the story of traveling salesman Gregor Samsa, who wakes one morning to find himself transformed into a monstrous insect. This hugely influential work inspired George Orwell, Albert Camus, Jorge Louis Borges, and Ray Bradbury, while continuing to unsettle millions of readers. In her new translation of Kafka's masterpiece, Susan Bernofsky strives to capture both the humor and the humanity in this macabre tale, underscoring the ways in which Gregor Samsa's grotesque metamorphosis is just the physical manifestation of his longstanding spiritual impoverishment.
A revelatory work that examines the intricate relationship between history and literature, truth and fiction--with some surprising conclusions. Focusing on three literary masterpieces--Charles Dickens's Bleak House (1853), Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary (1857), and Thomas Mann's Buddenbrooks (1901)--Peter Gay, a leading cultural historian, demonstrates that there is more than one way to read a novel. Typically, readers believe that fiction, especially the Realist novels that dominated Western culture for most of the nineteenth century and beyond, is based on historical truth and that great novels possess a documentary value. That trust, Gay brilliantly shows, is misplaced; novels take their own path to reality. Using Dickens, Flaubert, and Mann as his examples, Gay explores their world, their craftsmanship, and their minds. In the process, he discovers that all three share one overriding quality: a resentment and rage against the society that sustains the novel itself. Using their stylish writing as a form of revenge, they deal out savage reprisals, which have become part of our Western literary canon. A New York Times Notable Book and a Best Book of 2002.
"Bugliosi has definitively explained the murder that recalibrated modern America." --Jim Newton, Los Angeles Times Book Review Parkland (originally titled Four Days in November) is the exciting and definitive narrative of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963. Releasing this fall, the movie--starring Paul Giamatti, Zac Efron, Jacki Weaver, and Billy Bob Thornton--follows a group of individuals making split-second decisions after this incomprehensible event: the doctors and nurses at Parkland Hospital, the chief of the Dallas Secret Service, the cameraman who captured what has become the most examined film in history, the FBI agents who had gunman Lee Harvey Oswald within their grasp, and Vice President Lyndon Johnson who had to take control of the country at a moment's notice. Based on Vincent Bugliosi's Reclaiming History--Parkland is the story of that day--the movie is produced by Tom Hanks, Gary Goetzman (Game Change, Charlie Wilson's War), Nigel Sinclair (End of Watch, Snitch), Matt Jackson (End of Watch, Snitch), and Bill Paxton, and written and directed by Peter Landesman.
"The best introduction to logic you will find."--Martin Gardner "Professor Bennett entertains as she instructs," writes Publishers Weekly about the penetrating yet practical Logic Made Easy. This brilliantly clear and gratifyingly concise treatment of the ancient Greek discipline identifies the illogical in everything from street signs to tax forms. Complete with puzzles you can try yourself, Logic Made Easy invites readers to identify and ultimately remedy logical slips in everyday life. Designed with dozens of visual examples, the book guides you through those hair-raising times when logic is at odds with our language and common sense. Logic Made Easy is indeed one of those rare books that will actually make you a more logical human being.
"Rich, learned, briskly written, maddening yet necessary study."--Lee Siegel, New York Times Book Review Peter Gay explores the shocking modernist rebellion that, beginning in the 1840s, transformed art, literature, music, and film. Modernism presents a thrilling pageant of heretics that includes Oscar Wilde, Pablo Picasso, D. W. Griffiths, James Joyce, Virginia Woolf, T. S. Eliot, Walter Gropius, Arnold Schoenberg, and (of course!) Andy Warhol.
Winner of the James Beard Foundation Book of the Year, Healthy Focus: delicious recipes for vegetarian soups from the author of "the most influential cookbooks in the history of modern vegetarian cuisine" (Chicago Sun-Times). Anna Thomas's Vegetarian Epicure cookbooks have sold millions of copies and inspired generations. Now she describes her love affair with the ultimate comfort food. "From my kitchen to yours," Thomas says, "here are the best soups I've ever made." Her wonderfully creative recipes make use of fresh, seasonal produce--try black bean and squash soup in the fall, smoky eggplant soup in midsummer, or seductively perfumed wild mushroom soup for Christmas. Silky puree or rib-sticking chowder--each recipe has room for variation, and nearly all are vegan-friendly. Love Soup also provides recipes for breads, hummus, pesto, salads, and homey desserts--and simple menus that put soup at the heart of the meal. Throughout, Thomas offers expert advice on shopping, seasoning, tasting, becoming a cook. With soups that delight and nourish, Thomas invites us all into the kitchen, to the most old-fashioned food and the newest, to the joy and good sense of home cooking.
Winner of the Michael Shaara Award for Excellence in Civil War Fiction, the John Eston Cook Award, and the Boyd Military Novel Award: "One of the best Civil War novels . . . McCaig's prose is gorgeous . . . stunning."--Houston Chronicle Duncan Gatewood, seventeen and heir to Gatewood Plantation, falls in love with Maggie, a mulatto slave, who conceives a son, Jacob. Maggie and Jacob are sold south, and Duncan is packed off to the Virginia Military Institute--he will eventually fight for Robert E. Lee. Another Gatewood slave, Jesse--whose love for Maggie is unrequited--escapes to find her. Jesse finds his freedom and enlists in Mr. Lincoln's army; in time he will confront his former masters. In his award-winning novel of the interlocked lives of masters and slaves, Donald McCaig conjures a passionate and richly textured story in the heart of America's greatest war.
"A bred-in-the-bones storyteller."--Geraldine Brooks Canaan fills a vast canvas. Its points of reference are Richmond in the throes of Reconstruction; the trading floors of Wall Street, where men makes fortunes speculating on the war's consequences; a Virginia plantation, where the ruin of the South is written in wrenching detail; and the Great Plains, where the splendidly arrogant George Custer rides to his fate against Sitting Bull's warriors. This is the story of America over twenty years of its most turbulent history. The characters are black, white, red, ex-Union, and ex-Confederate; and the principal narrator is a Santee woman, She Goes Before, who marries an ex-slave. Through her eyes we witness the hanging of her father by whites in the mass execution of 1863, Red Cloud's banquet with President Grant, and that final confrontation on the bluffs above the Little Bighorn. "McCaig's extensive research is revealed in the book's rich historical detail and revisionist perspective. Black life in Reconstruction-era Virginia is portrayed particularly well."--Library Journal
An authoritative work offering a fresh look at Beethoven's life, career, and milieu. "Magisterial" --New York Review of Books. This brilliant portrayal weaves Beethoven's musical and biographical stories into their historical and artistic contexts. Lewis Lockwood sketches the turbulent personal, historical, political, and cultural frameworks in which Beethoven worked and examines their effects on his music. "The result is that rarest of achievements, a profoundly humane work of scholarship that will--or at least should--appeal to specialists and generalists in equal measure" (Terry Teachout, Commentary). Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. "Lewis Lockwood has written a biography of Beethoven in which the hours that Beethoven spent writing music--that is, his methods of working, his interest in contemporary and past composers, the development of his musical intentions and ideals, his inner musical life, in short--have been properly integrated with the external events of his career. The book is invaluable." --Charles Rosen "Lockwood writes with poetry and clarity--a rare combination. I especially enjoyed the connection that he makes between the works of Beethoven and the social and political context of their creation--we feel closer to Beethoven the man without losing our wonder at his genius." --Emanuel Ax "The magnum opus of an illustrious Beethoven scholar. From now on, we will all turn to Lockwood's Beethoven: The Music and the Life for insight and instruction." --Maynard Solomon "This is truly the Beethoven biography for the intelligent reader. Lewis Lockwood speaks in his preface of writing on Beethoven's works at 'a highly accessible descriptive level.' But he goes beyond that. His discussion of the music, based on a deep knowledge of its context and the composition processes behind it, explains, elucidates, and is not afraid to evaluate; while the biographical chapters, clearly and unfussily written, and taking full account of the newest thinking on Beethoven, align closely with the musical discussion. The result is a deeply perceptive book that comes as close as can be to presenting the man and the music as a unity."--Stanley Sadie, editor, The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians "Impressive for both its scholarship and its fresh insights, this landmark work--fully accessible to the interested amateur--immediately takes its place among the essential references on this composer and his music."--Bob Goldfarb, KUSC-FM 91.5 "Lockwood writes like an angel: lucid, enthusiastic, stirring and enlightening. Beethoven has found his ablest interpreter."--Jonathan Keates, The Spectator "There is no better survey of Beethoven's compositions for a wide audience."--Michael Kimmelman, The New York Times Book Review
A young woman's coming of age, a romantic love story, and a spiritual journey--each infused with the lessons of history. In the Image is an extraordinary first novel illuminated by spiritual exploration, one that remembers "a language, a literature, a held hand, an entire world lived and breathed in the image of God." Bill Landsmann, an elderly Jewish refugee in a New Jersey suburb with a passion for travel, is obsessed with building his slide collection of images from the Bible that he finds scattered throughout the world. The novel begins when he crosses paths with his granddaughter's friend, Leora, and continues by moving forward through her life and backward through his, revealing the unexpected links between his family's past and her family's future. Not just a first novel but a cultural event--a wedding of secular and religious forms of literature--In the Image neither lives in the past nor seeks to escape it, but rather assimilates it, in the best sense of the word, honoring what is lost and finding, among the lost things, the treasures that can renew the present. Reading group guide included.
"Passionate, cantankerous, and fascinating. Rather like Korea itself."--Nicholas D. Kristof, New York Times Book Review Korea has endured a "fractured, shattered twentieth century," and this updated edition brings Bruce Cumings's leading history of the modern era into the present. The small country, overshadowed in the imperial era, crammed against great powers during the Cold War, and divided and decimated by the Korean War, has recently seen the first real hints of reunification. But positive movements forward are tempered by frustrating steps backward. In the late 1990s South Korea survived its most severe economic crisis since the Korean War, forcing a successful restructuring of its political economy. Suffering through floods, droughts, and a famine that cost the lives of millions of people, North Korea has been labeled part of an "axis of evil" by the George W. Bush administration and has renewed its nuclear threats. On both sides Korea seems poised to continue its fractured existence on into the new century, with potential ramifications for the rest of the world.
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