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In the Valley of the Shadow

Posted by admin | Posted in New Releases, Religion & Spirituality-New | Posted on 03-03-2011-05-2008

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1439130094 : In the Valley of the Shadow: On the Foundations of Religious Belief
ISBN: 1439130094

 
Author: James L. Kugel

TEN YEARS AGO, Harvard professor James Kugel was diagnosed with an aggressive, likely fatal, form of cancer. “I was, of course, disturbed and worried. But the main change in my state of mind was that the background music had suddenly stopped—the music of daily life that’s constantly going, the music of infinite time and possibilities. Now suddenly it was gone, replaced by nothing, just silence. There you are, one little person, sitting in the late summer sun, with only a few things left to do.”

Despite his illness, Kugel was intrigued by this new state of mind and especially the uncanny feeling of human smallness that came with it. There seemed to be something overwhelmingly true about it—and its starkness reminded him of certain themes and motifs he had encountered in his years of studying ancient religions. “This, I remember thinking, was something I should really look into further—if ever I got the chance.”

In the Valley of the Shadow is the result of that search. In this wide-ranging exploration of different aspects of religion—interspersed with his personal reflections on the course of his own illness—Kugel seeks to uncover what he calls “the starting point of religious consciousness,” an ancient “sense of self” and a way of fitting into the world that is quite at odds with the usual one. He tracks these down in accounts written long ago of human meetings with gods and angels, anthropologists’ descriptions of the lives of hunter-gatherers, the role of witchcraft in African societies, first-person narratives of religious conversions, as well as the experimental data assembled by contemporary neuroscientists and evolutionary biologists.

Though this different sense of how we fit into the world has largely disappeared from our own societies, it can still come back to us as a fleeting state of mind, “when you are just sitting on some park bench somewhere; or at a wedding, while everyone else is dancing and jumping around; or else one day standing in your backyard, as the sun streams down through the trees . . . ” Read the rest of this entry »

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The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds

Posted by admin | Posted in New Releases, Outdoors & Nature-New, Science-New | Posted on 01-03-2011-05-2008

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0691147787 : The Crossley ID Guide: Eastern Birds
ISBN: 0691147787

 
Author: Richard Crossley

This stunningly illustrated book from acclaimed birder and photographer Richard Crossley revolutionizes field guide design by providing the first real-life approach to identification. Whether you are a beginner, expert, or anywhere in between, The Crossley ID Guide will vastly improve your ability to identify birds. Unlike other guides, which provide isolated individual photographs or illustrations, this is the first book to feature large, lifelike scenes for each species. These scenes–640 in all–are composed from more than 10,000 of the author’s images showing birds in a wide range of views–near and far, from different angles, in various plumages and behaviors, including flight, and in the habitat in which they live. These beautiful compositions show how a bird’s appearance changes with distance, and give equal emphasis to characteristics experts use to identify birds: size, structure and shape, behavior, probability, and color. This is the first book to convey all of these features visually–in a single image–and to reinforce them with accurate, concise text. Each scene provides a wealth of detailed visual information that invites and rewards careful study, but the most important identification features can be grasped instantly by anyone. By making identification easier, more accurate, and more fun than ever before, The Crossley ID Guide will completely redefine how its users look at birds. Essential for all birders, it also promises to make new birders of many people who have despaired of using traditional guides. Revolutionary. This book changes field guide design to make you a better birder A picture says a thousand words. The most comprehensive guide: 640 stunning scenes created from 10,000 of the author’s photographs Reality birding. Lifelike in-focus scenes show birds in their habitats, from near and far, and in all plumages and behaviors Teaching and reference. The first book to accurately portray all the key identification characteristics: size, shape, behavior, probability, and color Practice makes perfect. An interactive learning experience to sharpen and test field identification skills Bird like the experts. The first book to simplify birding and help you understand how to bird like the best An interactive website–www.crossleybirds.com–includes expanded captions for the plates and species updates

Pages: 544
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Princeton University Press Year: 2011

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Wild Bill Donovan

Posted by admin | Posted in Biographies & Memoirs-New, History-New, New Releases, Nonfiction-New | Posted on 26-02-2011-05-2008

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1416567445 : Wild Bill Donovan: The Spymaster Who Created the OSS and Modern American Espionage
ISBN: 1416567445

 
Author: Douglas Waller

He was one of America’s most exciting and secretive generals—the man Franklin Roosevelt made his top spy in World War II. A mythic figure whose legacy is still intensely debated, “Wild Bill” Donovan was director of the Office of Strategic Services (the country’s first national intelligence agency) and the father of today’s CIA. Donovan introduced the nation to the dark arts of covert warfare on a scale it had never seen before. Now, veteran journalist Douglas Waller has mined government and private archives throughout the United States and England, drawn on thousands of pages of recently declassified documents, and interviewed scores of Donovan’s relatives, friends, and associates to produce a riveting biography of one of the most powerful men in modern espionage.

William Joseph Donovan’s life was packed with personal drama. The son of poor Irish Catholic parents, he married into Protestant wealth and fought heroically in World War I, where he earned the nickname “Wild Bill” for his intense leadership and the Medal of Honor for his heroism. After the war he made millions as a Republican lawyer on Wall Street until FDR, a Democrat, tapped him to be his strategic intelligence chief. A charismatic leader, Donovan was revered by his secret agents. Read the rest of this entry »

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True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself

Posted by admin | Posted in Biographies & Memoirs-New, Health, Mind & Body-New, New Releases | Posted on 25-02-2011-05-2008

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1416587241 : True You: A Journey to Finding and Loving Yourself
ISBN: 1416587241

 
Author: Janet Jackson

ONE OF THE GREATEST ENTERTAINERS OF OUR TIME CANDIDLY REVEALS HER VERY PERSONAL STRUGGLE WITH AN ISSUE SO MANY OF US FACE EVERY DAY: SELF-ESTEEM

Janet Jackson emerged from the shadows of an already famous family to become one of the most beloved, recognizable, and influential performers in the world. But at what cost?

From the age of ten, when she made her acting debut on Good Times, Janet was told by Hollywood that she needed to slim down. Her well-meaning brothers, especially fun-loving Michael, teased her relentlessly until she began to believe that who she was wasn’t good enough. It was an idea that no amount of critical acclaim in television and film or, later, international platinum success in music could change.

Janet turned to food for comfort and escape. She developed a self-destructive pattern familiar to so many of us: fear and uncertainty led to bad feelings about herself and ultimately depression. The depression led to overeating. And her yo-yoing weight was painfully obvious in the bright lights of the entertainment world.

It has taken Janet most of her adult life to come to terms with who she is. But she has finally broken free of the attitudes that brought her down and has embraced realistic goals that help her eat better, exercise better, feel better, and ultimately be better. Read the rest of this entry »

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And Furthermore

Posted by admin | Posted in Biographies & Memoirs-New, Entertainment-New, New Releases | Posted on 25-02-2011-05-2008

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0312659067 : And Furthermore
ISBN: 0312659067

 
Author: Judi Dench

I can hardly believe that it is more than half a century since I first stepped on to the stage of the Old Vic Theatre and into a way of life that has brought me the most rewarding professional relationships and friendships.  I cannot imagine now ever doing anything else with my life except acting…” – Judi Dench

From London’s glittering West End to Broadway’s bright lights, from her Academy Award-winning role as Elizabeth I in Shakespeare in Love to “M” in the James Bond films, Judi Dench has treated audiences to some of the greatest performances of our time.  She made her professional acting debut in 1957 with England’s Old Vic theatre company playing Ophelia in Hamlet , Katherine in Henry V (her New York debut), and then, Juliet. In 1961, she joined the Royal Shakespeare Company playing Anya in The Cherry Orchard with John Gielgud and Peggy Ashcroft. In 1968, she went beyond the classical stage to become a sensation as Sally Bowles in Cabaret, adding musical comedy to her repertoire. Over the years, Dench has given indelible performances in the classics as well as some of the greatest plays and musicals of the twentieth century including Noël Coward’s Hay Fever, Stephen Sondheim’s A Little Night Music, Kaufman and Hart’s The Royal Family and David Hare’s Amy’s View (for which she won the Tony Award).  Recently, she made a triumphant return to A Midsummer Night’s Dream as Titania, a role she first played in 1962, now played as a theatre-besotted Queen Elizabeth I.  Her film career has been filled with unforgettable performances of some unforgettable women: Queen Victoria in Mrs. Brown, the terrifying schoolteacher Barbara Covett in Notes on a Scandal and the writer Iris Murdoch in Iris.  And, for the BBC, Dench created another unforgettable woman when she brought her great comic timing and deeply felt emotions to the role of Jean Pargetter in the long-running BBC series As Time Goes By.

And Furthermore is, however, more than the story of a great actress’s career.   It is also the story of Judi Dench’s life: her early days as a child in a family that was in love with the theatre; her marriage to actor Michael Williams; the joy she takes in her daughter, the actress Finty Williams, and her grandson, Sammy.  Filled with Dench’s impish sense of humor, diamond-sharp intelligence and photos from her personal archives, And Furthermore is the book every fan of the great Judi Dench will cherish.

Pages: 211
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press Year: 0

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While Mortals Sleep: Unpublished Short Fiction

Posted by admin | Posted in New Releases, Science Fiction & Fantasy-New | Posted on 07-02-2011-05-2008

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0385343736 : While Mortals Sleep: Unpublished Short Fiction
ISBN: 0385343736

 
Author: Kurt Vonnegut

Foreword by Dave Eggers

Smart, whimsical, and often scathing, the fiction of Kurt Vonnegut influenced a generation of American writers—including Dave Eggers, author of this volume’s Foreword. In these previously unpublished gems, Vonnegut’s originality infuses a unique landscape of factories, trailers, and bars—and characters who pit their dreams and fears against a cruel and sometimes comically indifferent world.

Here are stories of men and machines, art and artifice, and how ideals of fortune, fame, and love take curious twists in ordinary lives. An ambitious builder of roads, commanding an army of bulldozers, graders, and asphalt spreaders, fritters away his free time with miniature trains—until the women in his life crash his fantasy land. Trapped in a stenography pool, a young dreamer receives a call from a robber on the run, who presents her with a strange proposition. A crusty newspaperman is forced onto a committee to judge Christmas displays—a job that leads him to a suspiciously ostentatious ex-con and then a miracle. A hog farmer’s widow receives cryptic, unsolicited letters from a man in Schenectady about “the indefinable sweet aches of the spirit.” But what will she find when she goes to meet him in the flesh?

These beautifully rendered works are a testament to Vonnegut’s unique blend of observation and imagination. Like a present left behind by a departed loved one, While Mortals Sleep bestows upon us a shimmering Kurt Vonnegut gift: a poignant reflection of our world as it is and as it could be.

Pages: 272
 
Binding: Hardcover
 
Publisher: Delacorte Press Year: 2011

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