The acclaimed author of There Are No Children Here takes us into the heart of Chicago by introducing us to some of the city’s most interesting, if not always celebrated, people.
Chicago is one of America’s most iconic, historic, and fascinating cities, as well as a major travel destination. For Alex Kotlowitz, an accidental Chicagoan, it is the perfect perch from which to peer into America’s heart. It’s a place, as one historian has said, of “messy vitalities,” a stew of contradictions: coarse yet gentle, idealistic yet restrained, grappling with its promise, alternately sure and unsure of itself.
Chicago, like America, is a kind of refuge for outsiders. It’s probably why Alex Kotlowitz found comfort there. He’s drawn to people on the outside who are trying to clean up—or at least make sense of—the mess on the inside. Perspective doesn’t come easy if you’re standing in the center. As with There Are No Children Here, Never a City So Real is not so much a tour of a place as a chronicle of its soul, its lifeblood. It is a tour of the people of Chicago, who have been the author’s guides into this city’s—and in a broader sense, this country’s—heart.
Benjamin Franklin is the founding father who winks at us, the one who seems made of flesh rather than marble. In this authoritative and engrossing full-scale biography, Walter Isaacson shows how the most fascinating of America's founders helped define our national character.
In a sweeping narrative that follows Franklin's life from Boston to Philadelphia to London and Paris and back, Isaacson chronicles the adventures of the spunky runaway apprentice who became, during his 84-year life, America's best writer, inventor, media baron, scientist, diplomat, and business strategist, as well as one of its most practical and ingenious political leaders. He explores the wit behind Poor Richard's Almanac and the wisdom behind the Declaration of Independence, the new nation's alliance with France, the treaty that ended the Revolution, and the compromises that created a near-perfect Constitution.
Above all, Isaacson shows how Franklin's unwavering faith in the wisdom of the common citizen and his instinctive appreciation for the possibilities of democracy helped to forge an American national identity based on the virtues and values of its middle class.
In this superb book, Tom Brokaw goes out into America, to tell through the stories of individual men and women the story of a generation, America's citizen heroes and heroines who came of age during the Great Depression and the Second World War and went on to build modern America. This generation was united not only by a common purpose, but also by common values--duty, honor, economy, courage, service, love of family and country, and, above all, responsibility for oneself. In this book, you will meet people whose everyday lives reveal how a generation persevered through war, and were trained by it, and then went on to create interesting and useful lives and the America we have today.
In this book you'll meet people like Charles Van Gorder, who set up during D-Day a MASH-like medical facility in the middle of the fighting, and then came home to create a clinic and hospital in his hometown. You'll hear George Bush talk about how, as a Navy Air Corps combat pilot, one of his assignments was to read the mail of the enlisted men under him, to be sure no sensitive military information would be compromised. And so, Bush says, "I learned about life." You'll meet Trudy Elion, winner of the Nobel Prize in medicine, one of the many women in this book who found fulfilling careers in the changed society as a result of the war. You'll meet Martha Putney, one of the first black women to serve in the newly formed WACs. And you'll meet the members of the Romeo Club (Retired Old Men Eating Out), friends for life.
Through these and other stories in The Greatest Generation, you'll relive with ordinary men and women, military heroes, famous people of great achievement, and community leaders how these extraordinary times forged the values and provided the training that made a people and a nation great.
President Bill Clinton’s My Life is the strikingly candid portrait of a global leader who decided early in life to devote his intellectual and political gifts, and his extraordinary capacity for hard work, to serving the public. It is the fullest, most concretely detailed, most nuanced account of a presidency ever written, and a testament to the positive impact on America and on the world of his work and his ideals.
Here is the life of a great national and international figure, revealed with all his talents and contradictions. Filled with fascinating moments and insights, it is told openly, directly, in President Clinton’s own completely recognizable voice.
Packed off to the remote Scottish Police College for a lesson in teamwork - after hurling a mug at his supervisor's face - Inspector John Rebus finds himself in a snake pit. His classmates, an unruly band of rebel cops known as Resurrection Men, are suspected of orchestrating an elaborate drug heist, and Rebus is recruited by headquarters to get to the bottom of matters. It's no easy task: the investigation threatens to uncover a secret Rebus has spent years trying to conceal, and before long Rebus finds himself in the thick of a scandal with conspirators seemingly everywhere - men who have no problem spilling blood to get what they want.
In this endlessly fascinating book, New Yorker columnist James Surowiecki explores a deceptively simple idea that has profound implications: large groups of people are smarter than an elite few, no matter how brilliant—better at solving problems, fostering innovation, coming to wise decisions, even predicting the future.
This seemingly counterintuitive notion has endless and major ramifications for how businesses operate, how knowledge is advanced, how economies are (or should be) organized and how we live our daily lives. With seemingly boundless erudition and in delightfully clear prose, Surowiecki ranges across fields as diverse as popular culture, psychology, ant biology, economic behaviorism, artificial intelligence, military history and political theory to show just how this principle operates in the real world.
Despite the sophistication of his arguments, Surowiecki presents them in a wonderfully entertaining manner. The examples he uses are all down-to-earth, surprising, and fun to ponder. Why is the line in which you’re standing always the longest? Why is it that you can buy a screw anywhere in the world and it will fit a bolt bought ten-thousand miles away? Why is network television so awful? If you had to meet someone in Paris on a specific day but had no way of contacting them, when and where would you meet? Why are there traffic jams? What’s the best way to win money on a game show? Why, when you walk into a convenience store at 2:00 A.M. to buy a quart of orange juice, is it there waiting for you? What do Hollywood mafia movies have to teach us about why corporations exist?
The Wisdom of Crowds is a brilliant but accessible biography of an idea, one with important lessons for how we live our lives, select our leaders, conduct our business, and think about our world.
Why did crime in New York drop so suddenly in the mid-90s? How does an unknown novelist end up a bestselling author? Why is teenage smoking out of control, when everyone knows smoking kills? What makes TV shows like Sesame Street so good at teaching kids how to read? Why did Paul Revere succeed with his famous warning?
In this brilliant and groundbreaking book, New Yorker writer Malcolm Gladwell looks at why major changes in our society so often happen suddenly and unexpectedly. Ideas, behavior, messages, and products, he argues, often spread like outbreaks of infectious disease. Just as a single sick person can start an epidemic of the flu, so too can a few fare-beaters and graffiti artists fuel a subway crime wave, or a satisfied customer fill the empty tables of a new restaurant. These are social epidemics, and the moment when they take off, when they reach their critical mass, is the Tipping Point.
In The Tipping Point, Gladwell introduces us to the particular personality types who are natural pollinators of new ideas and trends, the people who create the phenomenon of word of mouth. He analyzes fashion trends, smoking, children's television, direct mail and the early days of the American Revolution for clues about making ideas infectious, and visits a religious commune, a successful high-tech company, and one of the world's greatest salesmen to show how to start and sustain social epidemics.
The Tipping Point is an intellectual adventure story written with an infectious enthusiasm for the power and joy of new ideas. Most of all, it is a road map to change, with a profoundly hopeful message—that one imaginative person applying a well-placed lever can move the world.
In the first full-length biography of Alexander Hamilton in decades, National Book Award winner Ron Chernow tells the riveting story of a man who overcame all odds to shape, inspire, and scandalize the newborn America. According to historian Joseph Ellis, Alexander Hamilton is “a robust full-length portrait, in my view the best ever written, of the most brilliant, charismatic and dangerous founder of them all.”
Few figures in American history have been more hotly debated or more grossly misunderstood than Alexander Hamilton. Chernow’s biography gives Hamilton his due and sets the record straight, deftly illustrating that the political and economic greatness of today’s America is the result of Hamilton’s countless sacrifices to champion ideas that were often wildly disputed during his time. “To repudiate his legacy,” Chernow writes, “is, in many ways, to repudiate the modern world.” Chernow here recounts Hamilton’s turbulent life: an illegitimate, largely self-taught orphan from the Caribbean, he came out of nowhere to take America by storm, rising to become George Washington’s aide-de-camp in the Continental Army, coauthoring The Federalist Papers, founding the Bank of New York, leading the Federalist Party, and becoming the first Treasury Secretary of the United States.
Historians have long told the story of America’s birth as the triumph of Jefferson’s democratic ideals over the aristocratic intentions of Hamilton. Chernow presents an entirely different man, whose legendary ambitions were motivated not merely by self-interest but by passionate patriotism and a stubborn will to build the foundations of American prosperity and power. His is a Hamilton far more human than we’ve encountered before—from his shame about his birth to his fiery aspirations, from his intimate relationships with childhood friends to his titanic feuds with Jefferson, Madison, Adams, Monroe, and Burr, and from his highly public affair with Maria Reynolds to his loving marriage to his loyal wife Eliza. And never before has there been a more vivid account of Hamilton’s famous and mysterious death in a duel with Aaron Burr in July of 1804.
Chernow’s biography is not just a portrait of Hamilton, but the story of America’s birth seen through its most central figure. At a critical time to look back to our roots, Alexander Hamilton will remind readers of the purpose of our institutions and our heritage as Americans.
Hardcore Java takes this language and breaks it apart, piece by piece, revealing the important secrets and tricks that will take you from a junior-level programmer to a seasoned and expert developer. You'll fly through the fundamentals and quickly find yourself learning about advanced memory management techniques, optimization and bytecode-level enhancements, and the techniques required to build lightning-fast GUIs. Throughout the book, you'll also master the art of writing and maintaining bulletproof and error-proof code, all while grasping the intricacies of the Java language.
With more than 2 million members, MoveOn.org is at the cutting edge of a new model for political activism and is able to mobilize thousands of volunteers and millions of dollars. Just in time for the election season, MoveOn takes its message offline with MoveOn's 50 Ways to Love Your Country in an effort to jumpstart an even broader civic dialogue and inspire all to become involved in our political process.
Written by MoveOn members across the country, from Hawaii to Maine, from political figures to teachers, each essay shares a compelling personal story and most include an action item with resources for taking inspiration a step further. Simple ideas are illuminated, such as "His Last Vote," about a dying man's wish to cast a ballot, as are more dynamic actions, such as "Start a Petition," which chronicles a couple's quest to protect wolves from trappers in Alaska. MoveOn's 50 Ways to Love Your Country answers the question that more and more citizens are asking: "What can I do?"
Getting older can be brutal—women gain weight, lose their sex drive, experience hot flashes, suffer memory loss, become short-tempered, find it difficult to sleep, and on and on. It’s not so easy for men, either—they start to lose energy and stamina as they age, too (and they have to live with women going through menopause). After years of being thin and fit and full of energy, Suzanne herself encountered the “Seven Dwarfs of Menopause”—Itchy, Bitchy, Sweaty, Sleepy, Bloated, Forgetful, and All-Dried-Up. Instead of living out the rest of her life cranky, sleep-deprived, and libido-less, Suzanne set out to discover how she could get her mind, body, and life back and banish those pesky dwarfs for good.
The result is The Sexy Years: Discover the Hormone Connection—The Secret to Fabulous Sex, Great Health, and Vitality, for Women and Men. In this passionately argued and enormously practical book, Suzanne supports her own research and experiences with the expertise of leading doctors in the field of women’s and men’s health and sexuality to create an inspiring, accessible call-to-arms to women to radically rethink how they approach life after fifty, and give them the tools to turn their lives around.
The author of the genre-defining memoir This Boy’s Life, the PEN/Faulkner Award–winning novella The Barracks Thief, and short stories acclaimed as modern classics, Tobias Wolff now gives us his first novel.
Determined to fit in at his New England prep school, the narrator has learned to mimic the bearing and manners of his adoptive tribe while concealing as much as possible about himself. His final year, however, unravels everything he’s achieved, and steers his destiny in directions no one could have predicted.
The school’s mystique is rooted in Literature, and for many boys this becomes an obsession, editing the review and competing for the attention of visiting writers whose fame helps to perpetuate the tradition. Robert Frost, soon to appear at JFK’s inauguration, is far less controversial than the next visitor, Ayn Rand. But the final guest is one whose blessing a young writer would do almost anything to gain.
No one writes more astutely than Wolff about the process by which character is formed, and here he illuminates the irresistible power, even the violence, of the self-creative urge. Resonant in ways at once contemporary and timeless, Old School is a masterful achievement by one of the finest writers of our time.
From building an Internet toaster to creating a cubicle intrusion detection system, Hardware Hacking Projects for Geeks offers an array of inventive, customized electronics projects for the geek who can't help looking at a gadget and wondering how it might be "upgraded." Beginning with basic hacks, tools, and techniques for those who may not have a background in electronics, the book covers the tools of the hardware hacking trade and basic soldering techniques, then moves into more advanced hacking projects. Clear step-by-step instructions allow even those with no formal electronics- or hardware-engineering skills to hack real hardware in very clever ways.
In Winning Back America, Governor Dean writes for the first time about his life and the people and events that have shaped him, beginning with his upbringing in New York and taking us through his medical career, eleven and a half years as governor of Vermont, and finally into his presidential campaign.
Winning Back America is Howard Dean in his own words. Dean tells his story with characteristic verve and forthrightness and also with emotion as he reflects on the death of his father and on the disappearance of his brother Charlie in Southeast Asia at the end of the Vietnam War.
Howard Dean's personal recollections bring us a full portrait of the candidate as a father, a husband, a son, and as a political leader.
Now, in The Automatic Millionaire, David Bach is sharing that secret. The Automatic Millionaire starts with the powerful story of an average American couple--he’s a low-level manager, she’s a beautician--whose joint income never exceeds $55,000 a year, yet who somehow manage to own two homes debt-free, put two kids through college, and retire at 55 with more than $1 million in savings. Through their story you’ll learn the surprising fact that you cannot get rich with a budget! You have to have a plan to pay yourself first that is totally automatic, a plan that will automatically secure your future and pay for your present.
This book is a collection of the very best from The Joy of Tech online series, and features several new, never-before-seen comics, exclusive notes from the artists about their work, an appendix of the JoyPolls, a lexicon of JoyWords, and an introduction by David Pogue. The Best of The Joy of Tech is an oasis of top-notch humor and images sure to refresh the mind's page and reboot the will to live.
A new edition of the New York Times bestseller—now a three-part Nova special on PBS-TV coming in Fall 2003: a fascinating and thought-provoking journey through the mysteries of space, time, and matter.
Now with a new preface (not in any other edition) that will review the enormous public reception of the relatively obscure string theory—made possible by this book and an increased number of adherents amongst physicists—The Elegant Universe "sets a standard that will be hard to beat" (New York Times Book Review). Brian Greene, one of the world's leading string theorists, peels away the layers of mystery surrounding string theory to reveal a universe that consists of eleven dimensions, where the fabric of space tears and repairs itself, and all matter—from the smallest quarks to the most gargantuan supernovas—is generated by the vibrations of microscopically tiny loops of energy.
Today physicists and mathematicians throughout the world are feverishly working on one of the most ambitious theories ever proposed: superstring theory. String theory, as it is often called, is the key to the Unified Field Theory that eluded Einstein for more than thirty years. Finally, the century-old antagonism between the large and the small-General Relativity and Quantum Theory-is resolved. String theory proclaims that all of the wondrous happenings in the universe, from the frantic dancing of subatomic quarks to the majestic swirling of heavenly galaxies, are reflections of one grand physical principle and manifestations of one single entity: microscopically tiny vibrating loops of energy, a billionth of a billionth the size of an atom. In this brilliantly articulated and refreshingly clear book, Greene relates the scientific story and the human struggle behind twentieth-century physics' search for a theory of everything.
Through the masterful use of metaphor and analogy, The Elegant Universe makes some of the most sophisticated concepts ever contemplated viscerally accessible and thoroughly entertaining, bringing us closer than ever to understanding how the universe works.
Having been a songwriter most of my life, condensing my ideas and emotions into short rhyming couplets and setting them to music, I had never really considered writing a book. But upon arriving at the reflective age of fifty, I found myself drawn, for the first time, to write long passages that were as stimulating and intriguing to me as any songwriting I had ever done.
And so Broken Music began to take shape. It is a book about the early part of my life, from childhood through adolescence, right up to the eve of my success with the Police. It is a story very few people know.
I had no interest in writing a traditional autobiographical recitation of everything that’s ever happened to me. Instead I found myself drawn to exploring specific moments, certain people and relationships, and particular events which still resonate powerfully for me as I try to understand the child I was, and the man I became.
For more than 100 years, National Geographic has set the standard for nature, culture, and wildlife photography. Now, in Through the Lens, 250 spectacular images—some famous, others rarely seen—are gathered in one lavish and beautiful volume.
Through the Lens is divided into geographical regions—Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East, the Americas, and Oceans and Isles—with a special section devoted to space exploration. Each geographical section features an outstanding array of photographs that exemplifies the area’s unique people, wildlife, archaeology, culture, architecture, and environment, accompanied by brief but informative captions. From Barry Bishop’s heroic Mount Everest climb in the 1950s to the glorious wildlife of Asia and Africa, from ancient Maya culture to the Afghan girl found 17 years after her piercing green eyes captivated the world, these are some of the finest and most important photographs ever taken.
Like handshakes, house pets, or raw carrots, many things are preferable when not slippery. Unfortunately, in this miserable volume, I am afraid that Violet, Klaus, and Sunny Baudelaire run into more than their fair share of slipperiness during their harrowing journey up -- and down -- a range of strange and distressing mountains.
In order to spare you any further repulsion, it would be best not to mention any of the unpleasant details of this story, particularly a secret message, a toboggan, a deceitful trap, a swarm of snow gnats, a scheming villain, a troupe of organized youngsters, a covered casserole dish, and a surprising survivor of a terrible fire.
Unfortunately, I have dedicated my life to researching and recording the sad tale of the Baudelaire Orphans. There is no reason for you to dedicate yourself to such things, and you might instead dedicate yourself to letting this slippery book slip from your hands into a nearby trash receptacle, or deep pit.