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Biography

Be Like the Fox: Machiavelli's Lifelong Quest for Freedom

Be Like the Fox: Machiavelli's Lifelong Quest for Freedom

Erica Benner

$49.99
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A fascinating new biography of Machiavelli, which explores his true character and contradictions as never before.

One needs to be a fox to recognize snares, and a lion to frighten the wolves.

Niccolò Machiavelli lived in a fiercely competitive world, one where brute wealth, brazen liars and ruthless self-promoters seemed to carry off all the prizes; where the wealthy elite grew richer at the expense of their fellow citizens. In times like these, many looked to crusading religion to solve their problems, or they turned to a new breed of leaders - super-rich dynasties like the Medici or military strongmen like Cesare Borgia; upstarts from outside the old ruling classes. In the republic of Florence, Machiavelli and his contemporaries faced a choice: should they capitulate to these new princes, or fight to save the city's democratic freedoms?

Be Like the Fox follows Machiavelli's dramatic quest for political and human freedom through his own eyes. Masterfully interweaving his words with those of his friends and enemies, Erica Benner breathes life into his penetrating, comical, often surprising comments on events. Far from the cynical henchman people think he was, Machiavelli emerges as his era's staunchest champion of liberty, a profound ethical thinker who refused to compromise his ideals to fit corrupt times. But he did sometimes have to mask his true convictions, becoming a great artist of fox-like dissimulation: a master of disguise in dangerous times.
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Gone: A Girl, a Violin, a Life Unstrung

Gone: A Girl, a Violin, a Life Unstrung

Min Kym

$32.99
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'All my life my Stradivarius had been waiting for me, as I had been waiting for her...'

At 7 years old Min Kym was a prodigy, the youngest ever pupil at the Purcell School of Music. At 11 she won her first international prize. She worked with many violins, waiting for the day she would play 'the one'. At 21 she found it: a rare 1696 Stradivarius, perfectly suited to her build and temperament. Her career soared. She recorded the Brahms concerto and a world tour was planned.

Then, in a train station café, her violin was stolen. In an instant her world collapsed. She descended into a terrifying limbo land, unable to play another note.

This is Min's extraordinary story - of a young woman staring into the void, wondering who she was, who she had been. It is a story of isolation and dependence, of love, loss and betrayal, and the intense, almost human bond that a musician has with their instrument. Above all it's a story of hope through a journey back to music.
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Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy: Ernest Hemingway's Secret Adventures, 1935-1961

Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy: Ernest Hemingway's Secret Adventures, 1935-1961

Nicholas Reynolds

$32.99
In 2010, while he was the historian at the esteemed CIA Museum, Nicholas Reynolds, a longtime American intelligence officer, former U.S. Marine colonel, and Oxford-trained historian, began to uncover clues suggesting Nobel Prize-winning novelist Ernest Hemingway's involvement in mid-twentieth-century spycraft was far more complex, sustained, and fraught with risks than has been previously understood.

Now Reynolds's deeply researched and captivating narrative, Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy, reveals his discoveries for the first time, bringing to light the whole story of this hidden side of Hemingway's life: his troubling recruitment by Soviet spies to work with the NKVD, the forerunner to the KGB, followed in short order by a complex set of secret relationships with American agencies, including the FBI, the Department of State, the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI), and the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), a precursor to the CIA.

Starting with Hemingway's sympathy to antifascist forces during the 1930s, Reynolds illuminates Hemingway's immersion in the life-and-death world of the revolutionary left, from his passionate commitment to the Spanish Republic; his successful pursuit by Soviet NKVD agents, who valued Hemingway's influence, access, and mobility; his wartime meeting in East Asia with communist leader Chou En-Lai, the future premier of the People's Republic of China; and finally to his undercover involvement with Cuban rebels in the late 1950s and his sympathy for Fidel Castro.

Reynolds equally explores Hemingway's participation in various roles as an agent for the United States government, including hunting Nazi submarines with ONI-supplied munitions in the Caribbean on his boat, Pilar; his command of an informant ring in Cuba called the "Crook Factory" that reported to the American embassy in Havana; and his on-the-ground role in Europe, where he helped OSS gain key tactical intelligence for the liberation of Paris and fought alongside the U.S. infantry in the bloody endgame of World War II.

As he examines the links between Hemingway's work as an operative and as an author, Reynolds reveals how Hemingway's secret adventures influenced his literary output and contributed to the writer's block and mental decline (including paranoia) that plagued him during the postwar years -- a period marked by the Red Scare and McCarthy hearings, which destroyed the life of anyone with Soviet connections. Reynolds also illuminates how those same experiences played a role in some of Hemingway's greatest works, including For Whom the Bell Tolls and The Old Man and the Sea, while also adding to the burden that he carried at the end of his life and perhaps contributing to his suicide.

A literary biography with the soul of an espionage thriller, Writer, Sailor, Soldier, Spy is an essential contribution to our understanding of the life, work, and fate of one of America's most legendary authors.
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Kick: The True Story of Kick Kennedy, JFK's Forgotten Sister and the Heir to Chatsworth

Kick: The True Story of Kick Kennedy, JFK's Forgotten Sister and the Heir to Chatsworth

Paula Byrne

$22.99
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The remarkable life of the vivacious, clever - and forgotten - Kennedy sister, who charmed the English aristocracy and was almost erased from her family history. When Kathleen Kennedy sailed to England after her father had been appointed Ambassador to Great Britain in 1938, her wit, aloofness and sexual charisma at once became the source of endless fascination for the British public.

'Kick' became the star of the family and the press loved her, London magazine Queen headlining her as 'America's Most Important Debutante'. Her meeting at a summer garden party with a shy, tall, handsome man called 'Billy' who it transpired was the heir to the Duke of Devonshire and Chatsworth, the most eligible bachelor in England, became first an intrigue and soon a scandal for the Kennedys. She was Catholic and he an Anglican. But Kick had fallen in love with Billy, and with England. In 1944, they were married. In September Billy was killed in combat with the British Army. Widowed as Lady Hartington, Kathleen Kennedy remained in England after the loss of her husband until her own tragic death. 

In 'Kick', Paul Byrne tells the story of a woman who was more than simply the second sister of Jack, Bobby and Ted: a feisty and unique product of two countries, she was the force of personality the Kennedys rarely mentioned, a life long hidden from the legendary family history.
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Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten

Daughter of Empire: Life as a Mountbatten

Pamela Hicks

$22.99
A source of inspiration for the film Viceroy's House.

Pamela Mountbatten was born at the end of the 1920s into one of Britain's grandest families. The daughter of Lord Louis Mountbatten and his glamorous wife Edwina Ashley, she was brought up by nannies and governesses as she was often parted from her parents as they dutifully carried out their public roles. A solitary child, she learned to occupy her days lost in a book, riding or playing with the family's animals (which included at different times a honey bear, chameleons, a bush baby, two wallabies, a lion, a mongoose and a coati mundi). Her parents' vast social circle included royalty, film stars, senior service officers, politicians and celebrities. Noel Coward invited Pamela to watch him filming; Douglas Fairbanks Jr. dropped in for tea and Churchill would call for 'a word with Dickie'.

After the war, Pamela truly came of age in India, while her parents were the Last Viceroy and Vicereine. This introduction to the country would start a life-long love affair with the people and the place.
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Colette's France: The Lives and Loves of the Belle Epoque Writer

Colette's France: The Lives and Loves of the Belle Epoque Writer

Jane Gilmour

$29.99
French author Colette has a special place in French literary history, her life and writing novels Cheri, Gigli and the Claudine series spanned the renowned artistic period of Belle Epoque Paris, the art scene in the South of France and war time Paris.

Colette's France is the remarkable life story of this extraordinary woman, who was known simply as 'Colette'. This lavishly illustrated biography of the French writer, who was as famous for her novels, Cheri, Gigli and the Claudine series, as for her often controversial life, follows her journey through the landscapes of France where she lived and loved - from a childhood in Burgundy and coming of age in Belle Epoque Paris, to Provence and St Tropez.

Jane Gilmour recounts the varied lives of a sensual, artistic, rebellious woman who lived life on her own terms, from prodigious writer and journalist, risque performer, lover and seducer, businesswoman, baroness, mother, and finally, grand old lady of letters.
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Hemingway at War: Ernest Hemingway's Adventures as a World War II Correspondent

Hemingway at War: Ernest Hemingway's Adventures as a World War II Correspondent

Terry Mort

$39.95
In the spring of 1944, Ernest Hemingway travelled to London and then to France to cover the Second World War for Colliers Magazine. He had resisted this kind of journalism for the early period of the war but now threw himself into the thick of events. He flew missions with the RAF, went on a landing craft on Omaha Beach on D-Day, involved himself in the French Resistance forces and famously rode into the still dangerous streets of liberated Paris. He was at the Siegfried Line in the Huertgen Forest when the 22nd Regiment lost nearly every man sent into the fight. This invigorating narrative is, in parallel, an investigation into Hemingway's subsequent work-much of it stemming from his wartime experience-which shaped the latter stages of his career.
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The Attachment: Letters from a Most Unlikely Friendship

The Attachment: Letters from a Most Unlikely Friendship

Ailsa Piper ,  Tony Doherty

$29.99
A celebration of friendship, renewal, nature and the human spirit told through letters between a writer and an 80-year-old priest. Original, surprising - both highly entertaining and deeply moving.

Dear Ailsa, Sometimes I wonder whether the friendship that has caught us both-a most unlikely friendship I must confess-might find an echo in a far off Irish village somewhere in the wild, windy hills of old Donegal. Or am I allowing that uncontrollable imagination of mine too much slack? This is the story of an unlikely friendship.

When priest and Sydneysider Tony Doherty emailed Melbourne-based writer and performer Ailsa Piper to say how much he had enjoyed her latest book, he was met with a swift reply from a similarly enquiring mind. Soon emails were flying back and forth and back again. They exchanged stories of their experiences as sweaty pilgrims and dissected dinner party menus. They shared their delight in Mary Oliver's poetry and wrestled with what it means to love and to grieve. This energetic exchange of words, questions and ideas grew into an unexpected but treasured friendship.

Collected here is that correspondence, brimming with empathy, humour and a fierce curiosity about each other and the worlds, shoes and histories that they inhabit. Described by one reader as 'a demonstration of how to have a conversation and a friendship', The Attachment is an intriguing, entertaining and moving celebration of family, faith, connection-even the correct time of day to enjoy rhubarb.
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The Mysterious Mr Jacob: Diamond Merchant, Magician and Spy

The Mysterious Mr Jacob: Diamond Merchant, Magician and Spy

John Zubrzycki

$29.99
It was a scandal that rocked the highest echelons of the British Raj. In 1891, a notorious jeweller and curio dealer from Simla offered to sell the world’s largest brilliant-cut diamond to the fabulously wealthy Nizam of Hyderabad. If the audacious deal succeeded it would set the merchant up for life. But the transaction went horribly wrong. The Nizam accused him of fraud, triggering a sensational trial in the Calcutta High Court that made headlines around the world.

The dealer was Alexander Malcolm Jacob, a man of mysterious origins. After arriving penniless in Bombay in 1865, he became the most famous purveyor of precious stones in princely India, and a confidante of Viceroys and Maharajas. Jacob also excelled in the magical arts. He inspired all those who met him, including Rudyard Kipling who immortalised him as Lurgan Sahib, the ‘healer of sick pearls’, in his novel Kim.

Now for the first time, John Zubrzycki, author of The Last Nizam, conveys the page-turning colour, romance and adventure of Jacob's astonishing life. Starting on the banks of the Tigris in modern-day Turkey where Jacob was born, Zubrzycki strips away the myths and legends. He follows Jacob's journey from the slums of Bombay, to the fabulous court of the Nizam of Hyderabad, from the hedonistic heights of Simla, the summer capital of the Raj, to the Calcutta High Court.

This is a story of India, of strange twists and unexpected outcomes. Most importantly Zubrzycki enters into and truly captures the spirit of the mysterious Mr Jacob, one of the most enigmatic and charismatic figures of his time.
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The Folded Clock: A Diary

The Folded Clock: A Diary

Heidi Julavits

$32.99
An insightful meditation on time, relationships and identity, The Folded Clock is a funny, thoughtful and inquisitive diary for fans of Olivia Laing and Jenny Offill Like many young people, Heidi Julavits kept a diary. Decades later she found her old diaries in a storage bin, and hoped to discover the early evidence of the person (and writer) she'd since become. Instead, they 'revealed me to possess the mind of a paranoid tax auditor'. Thus was born a desire to try again, to chronicle her daily life as a fortysomething woman, wife, mother and writer. The dazzling result is The Folded Clock, in which the diary form becomes a meditation on time and self, youth and aging, betrayal and loyalty, friendship and romance, faith and fate, marriage and family, desire and death, gossip and secrets, art and ambition. The Folded Clock is as playful as it is brilliant, a tour de force by one of the most gifted prose stylists in the English language.
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A Gift from Darkness: How I Escaped with My Daughter from Boko Haram

A Gift from Darkness: How I Escaped with My Daughter from Boko Haram

Patience Ibrahim ,  Andrea C. Hoffmann

$32.99
When Patience Ibrahim's husband died, she feared that her life was over. She had prayed every night for a baby to complete her family, and suddenly she found herself a nineteen-year-old widow, alone in the world. But when she fell in love again, a happy future seemed possible. Patience married once more , and was overjoyed to discover that she was pregnant. A few days later, everything fell apart. Men from Boko Haram arrived at her door, killing Patience's new husband and kidnapping her. This is the incredible true story of her and her baby daughter's survival, against all the odds.
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Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love

Rumi's Secret: The Life of the Sufi Poet of Love

Brad Gooch

$49.99
The acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of Smash Cut, Flannery, and City Poet delivers the first popular biography of Rumi, the thirteenth-century Persian poet revered by contemporary Western readers.

Ecstatic love poems of Rumi, a Persian poet and Sufi mystic born over eight centuries ago, are beloved by millions of readers in America as well as around the world. He has been compared to Shakespeare for his outpouring of creativity and to Saint Francis of Assisi for his spiritual wisdom. Yet his life has long remained the stuff of legend rather than intimate knowledge.

In this breakthrough biography, Brad Gooch brilliantly brings to life the man and puts a face to the name Rumi, vividly coloring in his time and place-a world as rife with conflict as our own. The map of Rumi's life stretched over 2,500 miles. Gooch traces this epic journey from Central Asia, where Rumi was born in 1207, traveling with his family, displaced by Mongol terror, to settle in Konya, Turkey. Pivotal was the disruptive appearance of Shams of Tabriz, who taught him to whirl and transformed him from a respectable Muslim preacher into a poet and mystic. Their vital connection as teacher and pupil, friend and beloved, is one of the world's greatest spiritual love stories. When Shams disappeared, Rumi coped with the pain of separation by composing joyous poems of reunion, both human and divine.

Ambitious, bold, and beautifully written, Rumi's Secret reveals the unfolding of Rumi's devotion to a "religion of love," remarkable in his own time and made even more relevant for the twenty-first century by this compelling account.
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Scattered Pearls

Scattered Pearls

Sohila Zanjani ,  David Brewster

$22.99
Scattered Pearls opens in pre-revolutionary Iran, where Sohila Zanjani grew up under the threat of violence, intimidation and control at the hands of her father. Resolving never to tread in the footsteps of her mother and her grandmother, both survivors of domestic abuse, Sohila tried to find a new life for herself on the other side of the world. But to her horror she discovered that living with her father had been gentle in comparison to the reality of her new married life.

Spanning more than a hundred years, Scattered Pearls tells the true stories of Sohila, her mother and her grandmother, and the injustice and abuse meted out by the men in their lives. It is a story of cultural misogyny in both Iran and Australia, and of an ongoing search for a loving, equal relationship.

Along the way the book provides a glimpse into the lives of ‘ordinary’ Iranians and the power of the Persian culture. It’s also a confronting insight into what can go on behind closed doors – even in an ‘advanced’ society.

But at its heart, Scattered Pearls is a story of resilience and personal growth, and of allowing the future to blossom in spite of the damage of the past. It is one of optimism, courage, and love and hope.

This is the story of three women,but it carries with it the stories of an entire culture.
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The Unfinished Palazzo: Life, Love and Art in Venice

The Unfinished Palazzo: Life, Love and Art in Venice

Judith Mackrell

$45.00
Commissioned in 1750, the Palazzo Venier was planned as a testimony to the power and wealth of a great Venetian family, but the fortunes of the Venier family waned and the project was abandoned with only one storey complete. Empty, unfinished, and in a gradual state of decay, the building was considered an eyesore. Yet in the early 20th century the Unfinished Palazzo's quality of fairytale abandonment, and its potential for transformation, were to attract and inspire three fascinating women at key moments in their lives: Luisa Casati, Doris Castlerosse and Peggy Guggenheim.

Each chose the Palazzo Venier as the stage on which to build her own world of art and imagination, surrounded by an amazing supporting cast, from d'Annunzio and Nijinsky, via Noel Coward and Cecil Beaton, to Yoko Ono. Luisa turned her home into an aesthete's fantasy where she hosted parties as extravagant and decadent as Renaissance court operas - spending small fortunes on her own costumes in her quest to become a 'living work of art' and muse to the artists of the late belle epoque and early modernist eras.

Doris strove to make her mark in London and Venice during the glamorous, hedonistic interwar years, hosting film stars and royalty at glittering parties. In the postwar years, Peggy turned the Palazzo into a model of modernist simplicity that served as a home for her exquisite collection of modern art that today draws tourists and art-lovers from around the world. Mackrell tells each life story vividly in turn, weaving an intricate history of these legendary characters and the Unfinished Palazzo that they all at different times called home.
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Guilty Thing: A Life of Thomas de Quincey

Guilty Thing: A Life of Thomas de Quincey

Frances Wilson

$19.99
'Life for De Quincey was either angels ascending on vaults of cloud or vagrants shivering on the city streets.'

Thomas De Quincey - opium-eater, celebrity journalist, and professional doppelganger - is embedded in our culture. Modelling his character on Coleridge and his sensibility on Wordsworth, De Quincey took over the poet's former cottage in Grasmere and turned it into an opium den. Here, increasingly detached from the world, he nurtured his growing hatred of his former idols and his obsession with murder as one of the fine arts.

De Quincey may never have felt the equal of the giants of the Romantic Literature he so worshipped but the writing style he pioneered - scripted and sculptured emotional memoir - was to inspire generations of writers: Dickens, Dostoevsky, Virginia Woolf. James Joyce knew whole pages of his work off by heart and he was arguably the father of what we now call psychogeography.

This spectacular biography, the produce of meticulous scholarship and beautifully supple prose, tells the riches-to-rags story of a figure of dazzling complexity and dazzling originality, whose rackety life was lived on the run, and both brings De Quincey and his martyred but wild soul triumphantly to life and firmly establishes Frances Wilson in the front rank of contemporary biographers.
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George Washington: The Wonder of the Age

George Washington: The Wonder of the Age

John Rhodehamel

$53.99
The only Washington biography you need. -Wall Street Journal As editor of the award-winning Library of America collection of George Washington's writings and a curator of the great man's original papers, John Rhodehamel has established himself as an authority of our nation's preeminent founding father. In this crisply written, admirably concise, and never superficial biography (Fergus M. Bordewich, Wall Street Journal) Rhodehamel examines George Washington as a public figure, arguing that the man-who first achieved fame in his early twenties-is inextricably bound to his mythic status. Solidly grounded in Washington's papers and exemplary in its brevity, this approachable biography is a superb introduction to the leader whose name has become synonymous with America.
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Wounds: A Memoir of Love and War

Wounds: A Memoir of Love and War

Fergal Keane

$32.99
A family story of a murder, blood and betrayal that tore an Irish town apart and causes men to be silent still.

'There was a tale about a British soldier being shot on the street outside my grandmother's house. My father told this as a ghost story. The mood of the telling was wistful. The killing had been wrong. Why else would a ghost come back? My father said that if we watched carefully in the deep night we would see a green shadow moving around the bedroom overlooking the main street. I could never stay awake long enough to encounter the phantasm. I was an adult before I learned the root of this story.'

Trying to relate the kindly men and women of his childhood with the deeds made public long years after they died, Fergal Keane's devastating history of a local murder asks, what is a terrorist? And how do people live with the act of killing? As those who pulled triggers, planted bombs and spied are long dead - as are their children - the bitterness of memory has faded in the towns where the violence and torture took place. 

Facing these people and their stories at last, 'Wounds' searches for a deeper sense of the personal history that made this colonial war, and how it initiated the beginning of the end of empire. A heartbreaking tale of the secrets of war, this journey is part of the story of all wars.
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Shepherd of Another Flock

Shepherd of Another Flock

David Wilbourne

$32.99
Shh, new vicar might be listening...'

As the newly appointed Vicar of Helmsley, David was looking forward to working in this picturesque market town, set in the beautiful Yorkshire countryside. Admittedly the vicarage, which dated back to the twelfth century, was extremely cold and damp. And not all of his parishioners were impressed by his new-fangled ways. But with the help of the irrepressible Father Bert, a retired cleric and one-time Tail End Charlie, David set about winning over the townsfolk.

There was Lord Feversham, the local landowner who at times bore an unnerving resemblance to Henry VIII; fiery Ted, a retired chef who had fought with the Polish Free Army; Frank the singing shepherd, still working as he approached eighty, and redoubtable countrywoman Eva. All had stories of hardship and sacrifice, friendship and love. Charming and moving, Shepherd of A Different Flock is a must-read for fans of authors like Gervase Phinn, James Herriot and Amanda Owen.
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Things That Helped: Essays

Things That Helped: Essays

Jessica Friedmann

$29.99
Through the tide of hormones ebbing and flowing my body, and the little runnels of blood and the sour tang of my breasts, I lay awake, listening, and thinking of breath and of water. I had broken my relationship with sleep.

Through the tide of hormones ebbing and flowing my body, and the little runnels of blood and the sour tang of my breasts, I lay awake, listening, and thinking of breath and of water. I had broken my relationship with sleep.

In this stunning collection, Jessica Friedmann navigates her journey through postpartum depression after the birth of her son, Owen. Drawing on critical theory, popular culture, and personal experience, her wide-ranging essays touch on class, race, gender, and sexuality, as well as motherhood, creativity, and mental illness.

Occasionally confronting, but always powerfully moving and beautifully observed, Things That Helped charts Jessica’s return into the world: a slow and complex process of reassembling what depression fractured and sometimes broke.
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How to be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life

How to be a Bawse: A Guide to Conquering Life

Lilly Singh

$27.99
The incredible first book from YouTube sensation and all-round superwoman, Lilly Singh.

From actress, comedian, and YouTube sensation Lilly Singh (aka ||Superwoman||) comes the definitive guide to being a bawse a person who exudes confidence, reaches goals, gets hurt efficiently, and smiles genuinely because they’ve fought through it all and made it out the other side.

Told in her hilarious, bold voice that’s inspired over nine million fans, and using stories from her own life to illustrate her message, Lilly proves that there are no shortcuts to success.

WARNING: This book does not include hopeful thoughts, lucky charms, and cute quotes. That’s because success, happiness, and everything else you want in life needs to be fought for not wished for. In Lilly’s world, there are no escalators. Only stairs.
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Dreamseller: An Addiction Memoir

Dreamseller: An Addiction Memoir

Brandon Novak ,  Joe Frantz

$27.95
Skateboarder and Jackass star Brandon Novak comes clean about his crazy rise to fame, tailspin into addiction, and other death-defying stunts on the road to recovery...

At seven, Brandon was a skateboard prodigy. By the time he was fourteen, he was living the dream. Discovered by skate legends Bucky Lasek and Tony Hawk. Touring the U.S. with the elite Powell-Peralta team. Signing autographs and appearing in films and magazines. Brandon had it all. Then he got hooked on heroin.

Soon the up-and-coming star was living a down-and-out life in a garage, begging for change, and hustling to score his next fix. He stole from his family and friends. He pushed the fantasy that everything was okay, that he was going to rehab, getting help, and getting better. But it was all a lie.

This is the story of an addict a dreamseller who stopped believing the lies he was selling and started believing in himself. With the help of his celebrity buddy Bam Margera of Jackass fame, Brandon joined the cast of MTV’s Viva La Bam and made an honest reach for sobriety. The road was hard, and he had some falls. But like any great skateboarder, Brandon Novak was always determined to get up again...
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Early Auden, Later Auden: A Critical Biography

Early Auden, Later Auden: A Critical Biography

Edward Mendelson

$63.95
Presented in one volume for the very first time, and updated with new archival discoveries, Early Auden, Later Auden reintroduces Edward Mendelson's acclaimed, two-part biography of W. H. Auden (1907-73), one of the greatest literary figures of the twentieth century. This book offers a detailed history and interpretation of Auden's oeuvre, spanning the duration of his career from juvenilia to his final works in poetry as well as theatre, film, radio, opera, essays, and lectures.
 
Early Auden, Later Auden begins with Auden's emigration from England to the United States. The book follows the evolution of his thought, offering a comparison of the poet's views at various junctures over a lifetime. With penetrating insight, Mendelson examines Auden's early ideas, methods, and personal transitions as reflected in poems, manuscripts and private papers. The book then links changes in Auden's intellectual, emotional and religious experience with his shifting public role - showing the depth of his personal struggles with self and with fame, and the means by which these internal conflicts were reflected in his art in later years.
 
Featuring a new preface by the author, Early Auden, Later Auden is an engaging and timeless work that demonstrates Auden's remarkable range and complexity, paying homage to his enduring legacy.
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My Father, the Pornographer: A Memoir

My Father, the Pornographer: A Memoir

Chris Offutt

$27.95
Award-winning writer Chris Offutt struggles to understand his recently deceased father, based on his reading of the 400-plus novels his father - a well-known writer of pornography in the 1970s and 80s - left him in his will.

Andrew Offutt was considered the  king of twentieth-century smut,  with a writing career that began as a strategy to pay for his son's orthodontic needs and soon took on a life of its own, peaking during the 1970s when the commercial popularity of the erotic novel reached its height. With his dutiful wife serving as typist, Andrew wrote from their home in the Kentucky hills, locked away in an office no one dared intrude upon. In this fashion he wrote more than four hundred novels, including pirate porn, ghost porn, zombie porn, and secret agent porn. The more he wrote, the more intense his ambition became and the more difficult it was for his children to be part of his world.

Over the long summer of 2013, his son, Chris, returned to his hometown to help his now widowed mother move out of his childhood home. As he began to examine his father's manuscripts and memorabilia, journals, and letters, he realized he finally had an opportunity to gain insight into the difficult, mercurial, sometimes cruel man he'd loved and feared in equal measure. Only in his father's absence could he truly make sense of the man and his legacy.

In My Father, the Pornographer, Offutt takes us on the journey with him, reading his father's prodigious literary output as both a critic and as a son seeking answers. He enters the darkest and most mysterious of places - the cave of a monstrous enigma named Andrew J. Offutt - armed with nothing but his own restless curiosity.
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A Dark Path to Freedom: Ruzi Nazar from the Red Army to the CIA

A Dark Path to Freedom: Ruzi Nazar from the Red Army to the CIA

Enver Altayli ,  David Barchard

$55.00
Born in Margilan, Central Asia on the eve of the Russian Revolution of 1917, Ruzi Nazar had one of the most exciting lives of the twentieth century.

Charming, intellectually brilliant and passionately committed to the liberation of Central Asia from Russian rule, his life was a series of adventures and narrow escapes. He was successively a Soviet student, a Red Army officer, an officer in the German Turkestan Legion during World War II, a fugitive living in postwar Germany's underworld, and finally an immigrant to the United States who rose high in the CIA. Here he mixed with the powerful and famous, represented the US as a diplomat in Ankara and Bonn, and became an undercover agent in Iran after the hostage crisis of 1979-81.

Nazar's foresight was formidable. He predicted that communism would collapse from within, briefing Reagan on the weakness of the Soviet system before the Reagan-Gorbachev talks. A Muslim who rejected Islamism, his warnings to the US government about the dangers of Islamic radicalism fell on deaf ears. This remarkable biography casts unique light on the lives of people caught up in the turmoil of the Soviet Union, World War II, the Cold War, and the struggle of nationalities deprived of their freedom by communism to regain independence.
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The SOE Hero: Bob Maloubier and the French Resistance

The SOE Hero: Bob Maloubier and the French Resistance

Robert Maloubier ,  Tania Szabo

$49.99
Robert 'Bob' Maloubier, otherwise known as the French James Bond and as Churchill's Secret Agent, led a life straight out of a spy thriller. At the age of just 19, he escaped occupied France and ended up in England, where he was given intensive training by the Special Operations Executive. 

Back in occupied France, Maloubier's SOE duties saw him commit large-scale industrial sabotage in Le Havre and Rouen, suffer gunshot wounds while evading capture and be evacuated in the nick of time by 161 Special Duties Squadron.  Always the centre of the action, he was flown back to France alongside fellow agents Philippe Liewer, Violette Szabo and Jean Claude Guiet, just after D-Day, where he operated in guerilla warfare conditions and destroyed vital bridges. After another mission with Force 136 in the Far East, the sheer wealth of experience Maloubier gathered during the war made him a perfect candidate to help found the French Secret Service, for whom he proved invaluable. 

Bob Maloubier was undoubtedly one of the Second World War's most remarkable, courageous and flamboyant characters.  His simply and uniquely told personal account of wartime spent as an SOE agent and with the French Resistance is poignant, brutally truthful, and is told here for the first time in English.
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Never Enough: A Way Through Addiction

Never Enough: A Way Through Addiction

Barney Hoskyns

$32.99
This is Barney Hoskyns's raw, uncompromising and utterly compelling account of the highs and lows of life under the needle.

A few months after graduating with a 1st class honours degree from Oxford University, Barney Hoskyns sat in a damp Clapham basement and asked his best friend to inject him with heroin. From that moment on, for the next 20 years, Hoskyns is hopelessly hooked. This is the searingly honest story of what brought him to this place - and how he got himself out of it.

Barney Hoskyns is one of the leading music writers of our time: published by Faber in the UK, his books have ranged the musical landscape from Led Zeppelin to Tom Waits, from Laurel Canyon to Woodstock. His articles have appeared in the NME, Melody Maker, Rolling Stone and Vogue, and in 2000 he founded Rock's Backpages.

Hoskyns beautifully describes the relationship between music and addiction, between love and infatuation. Never Enough is Hoskyns's raw, uncompromising and utterly compelling account of the highs and lows of life under the needle. Interspersed with photos and diary entries, Hosykns examines why he so willingly gave himself up to the death-grip of heroin, and what it took to finally free himself from it.
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The Gamekeeper

The Gamekeeper

Portia Simpson ,  Neil Hanson

$35.99
The H is for Hawk for lovers of the outdoors and wildlife. A fascinating memoir of Scotland's first-ever qualified female gamekeeper. Portia Simpson grew up outdoors, always preferring to climb trees than play indoors. Talented and driven, she became the first female to graduate as a Gamekeeper and Wildlife Manager. In this wonderful memoir, Portia tells the story of how she first broke into a traditionally conservative, male-dominated profession and the skills, training and dedication that helped to set her apart. She gives an intimate account of a life filled with stunning landscapes, heart-wrenching lows and magnificent highs, and shares her expert insight into the world of game keeping. Offering a sense of wonder at the mystique and natural beauty of the wild, this is a fascinating and unique look at the life of the huntswoman. 'The vividness of Portia Simpson's writing seduces you, evoking her passionate connection with the raw, violent beauty of nature' Libby Purves, Daily Mail
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Note to Self

Note to Self

Connor Franta

$35.00
In his New York Times bestselling memoir, A Work in Progress, Connor Franta shared his journey from small-town Midwestern boy to full-fledged Internet sensation. Exploring his past with humor and astounding insight, Connor reminded his fans of why they first fell in love with him on YouTube - and revealed to newcomers how he relates to his millions of dedicated followers.

Now, two years later, Connor is ready to bring to light a side of himself he’s rarely shown on or off camera. In this diary-like look at his life since A Work In Progress, Connor talks about his battles with clinical depression, social anxiety, self-love, and acceptance; his desire to maintain an authentic self in a world that values shares and likes over true connections; his struggles with love and loss; and his renewed efforts to be in the moment - with others and himself.

Told through short essays, letters to his past and future selves, poetry, and original photography, Note to Self is a raw, in-the-moment look at the fascinating interior life of a young creator turning inward in order to move forward.
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The Return: Fathers, Sons and the Land in Between

The Return: Fathers, Sons and the Land in Between

Hisham Matar

$24.99
SHORTLISTED FOR THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE FOR NON-FICTION  
SHORTLISTED FOR THE COSTA BIOGRAPHY AWARD
SHORTLISTED FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR AUTOBIOGRAPHY
WINNER OF THE SLIGHTLY FOXED BEST FIRST BIOGRAPHY PRIZE  
ONE OF THE NEW YORK TIMES' TOP 10 BOOKS OF 2016

A breathtaking memoir and an extraordinary testament to the human spirit.

The Return is at once a universal and an intensely personal tale. It is an exquisite meditation on how history and politics can bear down on an individual life. And yet Hisham Matar's memoir isn't just about the burden of the past, but the consolation of love, literature and art. It is the story of what it is to be human.

Hisham Matar was nineteen when his father was kidnapped and taken to prison in Libya. He would never see him again. Twenty-two years later, the fall of Gaddafi meant he was finally able to return to his homeland. In this moving memoir, the author takes us on an illuminating journey, both physical and psychological; a journey to find his father and rediscover his country.
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When We Rise: My Life in the Movement

When We Rise: My Life in the Movement

Cleve Jones

$32.99
Born in 1954, Cleve Jones was among the last generation of gay Americans who grew up wondering if there were others out there like himself. There were. Like thousands of other young people, Jones, nearly penniless, was drawn in the early 1970s to San Francisco, a city electrified by progressive politics and sexual freedom.

Jones found community - in the hotel rooms and ramshackle apartments shared by other young adventurers, in the city's bathhouses and gay bars like The Stud, and in the burgeoning gay district, the Castro, where a New York transplant named Harvey Milk set up a camera shop, began shouting through his bullhorn, and soon became the nation's most outspoken gay elected official. With Milk's encouragement, Jones dove into politics and found his calling in 'the movement.' When Milk was killed by an assassin's bullet in 1978, Jones took up his mentor's progressive mantle - only to see the arrival of AIDS transform his life once again.

By turns tender and uproarious - and written entirely in his own words - When We Rise is Jones' account of his remarkable life. He chronicles the heartbreak of losing countless friends to AIDS, which very nearly killed him, too; his co-founding of the San Francisco AIDS Foundation during the terrifying early years of the epidemic; his conception of the AIDS Memorial Quilt, the largest community art project in history; the bewitching story of 1970s San Francisco and the magnetic spell it cast for thousands of young gay people and other misfits; and the harrowing, sexy, and sometimes hilarious stories of Cleve's passionate relationships with friends and lovers during an era defined by both unprecedented freedom and possibility, and prejudice and violence alike.

When We Rise is not only the story of a hero to the LQBTQ community, but the vibrantly voice memoir of a full and transformative American life - an activist whose work continues today.
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Our Israeli Diary, 1978: Of That Time, of That Place

Our Israeli Diary, 1978: Of That Time, of That Place

Antonia Fraser

$19.99
In May 1978 Harold Pinter and Antonia Fraser visited Israel at the time of the 30th Anniversary of Independence. It was three years after they first lived together; neither had set foot in Israel before. Based in Jerusalem, they toured many of the country's historic sites: from Bethlehem to the fortress of Masada, encountering future Prime Minister Shimon Peres, Mayor of Jerusalem Teddy Kollek, Jackie Kennedy and a long-lost cousin of Harold's on a kibbutz. It was a trip during which Pinter's feelings about his heritage emerged for the first time. As he said himself: 'For the first time I feel Jewish'. This diary was kept daily by Antonia Fraser: the vivid narrative and descriptions (Antonia swimming in the Dead Sea while Harold had a beer) are leavened with humour, occasionally wry where Harold's quirks were concerned, and always tender. Above all, it is a unique picture of a time and place - and a touching insight into fifteen days in the lives of two writers, one Jewish, one Catholic, one a playwright and one a biographer, who were also a devoted couple.
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Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age

Muslim Girl: A Coming of Age

Amani Al-Khatahtbeh

$29.99
Required reading from the founder of MuslimGirl.com-a harrowing and candid memoir about coming of age as a Muslim American in the wake of 9/11, during the never-ending war on terror, and through the Trump era of casual racism.

At nine years old, Amani Al-Khatahtbeh watched from her home in New Jersey as two planes crashed into the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. That same year, she heard her first racial slur. At age eleven, when the United States had begun to invade Iraq and the television was flooded with anti-Muslim commentary, Amani felt overwhelmed with feelings of intense alienation from American society. At thirteen, her family took a trip to her father's native homeland of Jordan, and Amani experienced firsthand a culture built on pure religion, not Islamic stereotypes.

Inspired by her trip and after years of feeling like her voice as a Muslim woman was marginalized and neglected during a time when all the media could talk about was, ironically, Muslim women, Amani created a website called MuslimGirl. As the editor-in-chief, she put together a team of Muslim women and started a life dedicated to activism.

Notes from a Muslim Girl is the extraordinary account of Amani's journey through adolescence as a Muslim girl, from the Islamophobia she's faced on a daily basis, to the website she launched that became a cultural phenomenon, to the nation's political climate in the 2016 election cycle with Donald Trump as the Republican frontrunner.

While dispelling the myth that a headscarf makes you a walking target for terrorism, she shares both her own personal accounts and anecdotes from the "sisterhood" of writers that serve as her editorial team at MuslimGirl. Amani's honest, urgent message is fresh, timely, and a deeply necessary counterpoint to the current rhetoric about the Middle East.
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Unprecedented: The Masters and Me

Unprecedented: The Masters and Me

Tiger Woods ,  Lorne Rubinstein

$32.99
To mark the twentieth anniversary of his historic win at the 1997 Masters, Tiger Woods will for the first time reflect on the record-setting win both on and off the course.

In 1997, Tiger Woods was already among the most watched and closely examined athletes in history. But it wasn't until the Masters Tournament that Tiger Woods's career would definitively change forever. Tiger Woods, then only 21, won the Masters by a historic 12 shots, which remains the widest margin of victory in the tournament's history, making it arguably among the most seminal events in golf.

He was the first African-American/Asian player to win the Masters, and this at the Augusta National Golf Club, perhaps the most exclusive club in the world, and one that had in 1990 admitted its first black member. Now, twenty years later, Woods will explore his history with the game, the Masters tournament itself, how golf has changed over the last 20 years, and what it was like winning such an event.

Woods will also open up about his relationship with father Earl Woods, dispelling previous misconceptions, and will candidly reveal many never-before-heard stories. Written by one of the game's all-time greats, this book will provide keen insight on the Masters then and now, as well as on the sport itself.
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Redemption Song: Muhammad Ali and the Spirit of the Sixties

Redemption Song: Muhammad Ali and the Spirit of the Sixties

Mike Marqusee

$26.99
When Muhammad Ali passed away in June 2016 the world lost an iconic sportsman and black radical. Throughout the sixties he was a vibrant character, playful and political, popular and non-conformist, defiant and triumphant.

In this unique book, Mike Marqusee puts the great boxer back in his true historical context to explore a crucial moment at the cross-roads of popular culture and mass resistance. He traces Ali's interaction with the evolving black liberation and anti-war movements, including his brief but fascinating liaison with Malcolm X, as well as his encounters with Martin Luther King. Marqusee's elegant and forceful narrative explores the origins and impact of Ali's dramatic public stands on race and the draft, and reinterprets the  Rumble in the Jungle,  shedding new light on its triumph and tragedy. Above all, he imbues Ali's story with a long-neglected international dimension, revealing why he was embraced with such warmth by diverse peoples across the globe.

This timely antidote to the apolitical celebration of Ali as  a great American  revisits the man and the period with a fresh eye, casting new light on both his courage and his confusions. In this third edition, Dave Zirin reflects further on the life of Muhammad Ali after his recent death.
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