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Biography

Riot Days

Riot Days

Maria Alyokhina

$39.99
From activist, Pussy Riot member and freedom fighter Maria Alyokhina,  a raw, hallucinatory, passionate account of her arrest, trial and  imprisonment in a penal colony in the Urals for standing up for what she  believed in.

'One of the most brilliant and inspiring things I've read in years. Couldn't put it down. This book is freedom' Chris Kraus, author of I Love Dick

People who believe in freedom and democracy think it will exist forever.That is a mistake. What happened in Russia - what happened to me - could happen anywhere.When  I was jailed for political protest, I learned that prison doesn't just  teach you to follow the rules. It teaches you to think that you can  never break them. It's inevitable that the prison gates will  open at some point. But this doesn't mean that you leave the 'prisoner'  category and go straight into the category of 'the free'.

Freedom does not exist unless you fight for it every day.This is the story about how I made a choice. We are all Pussy Riot. And actions break fear. 'To Back Down an Inch is to Give Up a Mile'.
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What Happened

What Happened

Hillary Rodham Clinton

$45.00
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“In the past, for reasons I try to explain, I’ve often felt I had to be careful in public, like I was up on a wire without a net. Now I’m letting my guard down.”
- Hillary Clinton, from the introduction of What Happened

For the first time, Hillary Clinton reveals what she was thinking and feeling during one of the most controversial and unpredictable presidential elections in history. Now free from the constraints of running, Hillary takes you inside the intense personal experience of becoming the first woman nominated for president by a major party in an election marked by rage, sexism, exhilarating highs and infuriating lows, stranger-than-fiction twists, Russian interference, and an opponent who broke all the rules. This is her most personal memoir yet.

In these pages, she describes what it was like to run against Donald Trump, the mistakes she made, how she has coped with a shocking and devastating loss, and how she found the strength to pick herself back up afterwards. With humor and candor, she tells readers what it took to get back on her feet - the rituals, relationships, and reading that got her through, and what the experience has taught her about life. She speaks about the challenges of being a strong woman in the public eye, the criticism over her voice, age, and appearance, and the double standard confronting women in politics.

She lays out how the 2016 election was marked by an unprecedented assault on our democracy by a foreign adversary. By analyzing the evidence and connecting the dots, Hillary shows just how dangerous the forces were that shaped the outcome, and why Americans need to understand them to protect our values and our democracy in the future.

The election of 2016 was unprecedented and historic. What Happened is the story of that campaign and its aftermath - both a deeply intimate account and a cautionary tale for the nation.
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Simon Leys: Navigator Between Worlds

Simon Leys: Navigator Between Worlds

Philippe Paquet

$59.99
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Simon Leys is the pen-name of Pierre Ryckmans, who was born in Belgium and settled in Australia in 1970. He taught Chinese literature at the Australian National University and was Professor of Chinese Studies at the University of Sydney from 1987 to 1993. He died in 2015.

Writing in three languages - French, Chinese and English - he played an important political role in revealing the true nature of the Cultural Revolution. His writing on China and on varied literary and cultural topics appeared regularly in the New York Review of Books, Le Monde, Le Figaro LittUraire, Quadrant and the Monthly, and his books include The Hall of Uselessness, The Death of Napoleon, Other People's Thoughts and The Wreck of the Batavia & Prosper. In 1996 he delivered the ABC's Boyer Lectures. His many awards include the Prix Renaudot, the Prix Mondial Cino Del Duca, the Prix Guizot and the Christina Stead Prize for fiction.

This substantial biography - recently published by Gallimard in France to wide acclaim and winning an academy award from the AcadUmie Francaise - draws on extensive correspondence with Ryckmans, as well as his unpublished writings. It has been translated by an internationally renowned French translator Julie Rose (based in Sydney).
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Churchill and Orwell: The Fight for Freedom

Churchill and Orwell: The Fight for Freedom

Thomas E. Ricks

$24.99
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In this highly topical work in light of Brexit, Donald Trump's Presidency and the rise of the alt-right, #1 New York Times bestselling and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Thomas E. Ricks explains how Winston Churchill and George Orwell's far-sighted vision and inspired action in the face of authoritarianism helped to preserve individual freedom and democracy for the world.

They are perhaps the most important figures in modern British history- Orwell's 1984 is the most set text in schools in the UK, and Churchill is repeatedly named as the Greatest Brito'. Both are widely recognised for their vision and courage to campaign tirelessly, in words and deeds, against the totalitarian threat from both the left and the right. In a crucial moment, they responded first by seeking the facts of the matter, seeing through the lies and obfuscations, and then acted on their beliefs. Together they kept the West's compass set toward freedom as its due north.

However, in the late 1930s they occupied a lonely position- democracy was discredited in many circles and authoritarian rulers, fascist and communist, were everywhere in the ascent. Churchill and Orwell had the foresight to see clearly that the issue was human liberty - and that any government that denies its people basic rights is a totalitarian menace and has to be resisted. In the end, Churchill and Orwell proved their age's necessary men.

The glorious climax of Churchill & Orwell is their drive in the 1940s to triumph over freedom's enemies. Churchill may have played the larger role in the defeat of Hitler and the Axis, but Orwell's reckoning with the menace of authoritarian rule in Animal Farm and 1984 would define the stakes of the Cold War for its 50-year course, and continues to inspire to this day.
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The Incest Diary

The Incest Diary

Anonymous

$24.99
An extraordinary, powerful and beautifully written memoir of a daughter's abuse by, and attachment to, her father.

Throughout her childhood and adolescence, the anonymous author of The Incest Diary was raped by her father. Beneath a veneer of normal family life, she grew up in and around this all-encompassing secret. Her sexual relationship with her father lasted, off and on, into her twenties. It formed her world, and it formed her deepest fears and desires. Even after she broke away - even as she grew into an independent and adventurous young woman - she continued to seek out new versions of the violence, submission and secrecy she had struggled to leave behind.

In this graphic and harrowing memoir, the author revisits her early traumas and their aftermath - not from a clinical distance, but from deep within - to explore the ways in which her father's abuse shaped her, and still does. As a matter of psychic survival, she became both a sexual object and a detached observer, a dutiful daughter and the protector of a dirty secret. And then, years later, she made herself write it down.

With lyric concision, in vignettes of almost unbearable intensity, this writer tells a story that is shocking but that will ring true to many other survivors of abuse. It has never been faced so directly on the page.
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Sonata: A Memoir of Pain and the Piano

Sonata: A Memoir of Pain and the Piano

Andrea Avery

$39.95
A rich and vibrant memoir that weaves chronic illness and classical music into a raw and inspiring tale of grace and determination.

Andrea Avery, already a promising and ambitious classical pianist at twelve, was diagnosed with a severe case of rheumatoid arthritis (RA) that threatened not just her musical aspirations but her ability to live a normal life.

As Andrea navigates the pain and frustration of coping with RA alongside the usual travails of puberty, college, sex, and just growing-up, she turns to music?specifically Franz Schubert's sonata in B-flat D960, and the one-armed pianist Paul Wittgenstein for strength and inspiration. The heartbreaking story of this mysterious sonata - Schubert’s last, and his most elusive and haunting - is the soundtrack of Andrea's story.

Sonata is a breathtaking exploration of a “Janus-head miracle” - Andrea's extraordinary talent and even more extraordinary illness. With no cure for her R.A. possible, Andrea must learn to live with this disease while not letting it define her, even though it leaves its mark on everything around her - family, relationships, even the clothes she wears. And in this riveting account, she never loses her wit, humor, or the raw artistry of a true performer.

As the goshawk becomes a source of both devotion and frustration for Helen Macdonald in H is for Hawk, so the piano comes to represent both struggle and salvation for Andrea in her extraordinary debut.
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Affirming: Letters 1975-1997

Affirming: Letters 1975-1997

Isaiah Berlin

$49.99
The title of this final volume of Isaiah Berlin's letters is echoed by John Banville's verdict in his review of its predecessor, Building- Letters 1960-75, which saw Berlin publish some of his most important work, and create, in Oxford's Wolfson College, an institutional and architectural legacy.

In the period covered by this new volume (1975-97) he consolidates his intellectual legacy with a series of essay collections. These generate many requests for clarification from his readers, and stimulate him to reaffirm and sometimes refine his ideas, throwing substantive new light on his thought as he grapples with human issues of enduring importance.

Berlin's comments on world affairs, especially the continuing conflict between Israel and the Palestinians, and the collapse of Communism, are characteristically acute. This is also the era of the Northern Ireland Troubles, the Iranian revolution, the rise of Solidarity in Poland, the Chernobyl nuclear disaster, the fall of the Berlin Wall, Ayatollah Khomeini's fatwa against Salman Rushdie, the spread of Islamic fundamentalism, and wars in the Falkland Islands, the Persian Gulf and the Balkans.

Berlin scrutinises the leading politicians of the day, including Reagan, Thatcher and Gorbachev, and draws illuminating sketches of public figures, notably contrasting the personas of Alexander Solzhenitsyn and Andrey Sakharov. He declines a peerage, is awarded the Agnelli Prize for ethics, campaigns against philistine architecture in London and Jerusalem, helps run the National Gallery and Covent Garden, and talks at length to his biographer.

He reflects on the ideas for which he is famous - especially liberty and pluralism - and there is a generous leavening of the conversational brilliance for which he is also renowned, as he corresponds with friends about politics, the academic world, music and musicians, art and artists, and writers and their work, always displaying a Shakespearean fascination with the variety of humankind.

Affirming is the crowning achievement both of Berlin's epistolary life and of the widely acclaimed edition of his letters whose first volume appeared in 2004.
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A Tangled Web: Mata Hari: Dancer, Courtesan, Spy

A Tangled Web: Mata Hari: Dancer, Courtesan, Spy

Mary Craig

$49.99
In this new biography, published to coincide with the 100th anniversary of her execution, Mata Hari is revealed in all of her flawed eccentricity; a woman whose adult life was a fantastical web of lies, half-truths and magnetic sexuality that captivated men. Following the death of a young son and a bitter divorce, Mata Hari reinvented herself as an exotic dancer in Paris, before finally taking up the life of a courtesan. She could have remained a half-forgotten member of France's grande horizontale were it not for the First World War and her disastrous decision to become embroiled in espionage. What happened next was part farce and part tragedy that ended in her execution in October 1917. Recruited by both the Germans and the French as a spy, Mata Hari - codenamed H-21 - was also almost recruited by the Russians. But the harmless fantasies and lies she had told on stage had become part of the deadly game of double agents during wartime. Struggling with the huge cost of war, the French authorities needed to catch a spy. Mata Hari, the dancer, the courtesan, the fantasist, became the prize catch.
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Spies in the Family: An American Spymaster, His Russian Crown Jewel, and the Friendship That Helped End the Cold War

Spies in the Family: An American Spymaster, His Russian Crown Jewel, and the Friendship That Helped End the Cold War

Eva Dillon

$29.99
A riveting true-life thriller and revealing memoir from the daughter of an American intelligence officer—the astonishing true story of two spies and their families on opposite sides of the Cold War.

In the summer of 1975, seventeen-year-old Eva Dillon's family was living in New Delhi when her father was exposed as a CIA spy. Eva had long believed that her father was a U.S. State Department employee. She had no idea that he was handling the CIA’s highest-ranking double agent—Dmitri Fedorovich Polyakov—a Soviet general whose code name was TOPHAT. Dillon’s father and Polyakov had a close friendship that went back years, to their first meeting in Burma in the mid-1960s. At the height of the Cold War, the Russian offered the CIA an unfiltered view into the vault of Soviet intelligence. His collaboration helped ensure that tensions between the two nuclear superpowers did not escalate into a shooting war.

Spanning fifty years and three continents, Spies in the Family is a deeply researched account of two families on opposite sides of the lethal espionage campaigns of the Cold War, and two men whose devoted friendship lasted a lifetime, until the devastating final days of their lives. With impeccable insider access to both families as well as knowledgeable CIA and FBI officers, Dillon goes beyond the fog of secrecy to craft an unforgettable story of friendship and betrayal, double agents and clandestine lives, that challenges our notions of patriotism, exposing the commonality between peoples of opposing political economic systems.

Both a gripping tale of spy craft and a moving personal story, Spies in the Family is an invaluable and heart-rending work.

Spies in the Family includes 25 black-and-white photos.
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At the Strangers' Gate

At the Strangers' Gate

Adam Gopnik

$32.99
When Adam Gopnik and his soon-to-be-wife, Martha, left the comforts of home in Montreal for New York, the city then, much like today, was a pilgrimage site for the young, the arty, and the ambitious. But it was also becoming a city of greed, where both life's consolations and its necessities were increasingly going to the highest bidder. At the Strangers' Gate builds a portrait of this particular moment in New York through the story of this couple's journey - from their excited arrival as aspiring artists to their eventual growth into a New York family. Gopnik transports us to his tiny basement room on the Upper East Side, and later to SoHo, where he captures a unicorn: an affordable New York loft. He takes us through his professional meanderings, from graduate student-cum-library-clerk to the corridors of Conde Nast and the galleries of MoMA. Between tender and humorous reminiscences, including affectionate portraits of Richard Avedon, Robert Hughes, and Jeff Koons, among many others, Gopnik discusses the ethics of ambition, the economy of creative capital, and the peculiar anthropology of art and aspiration in New York, then and now.
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The Wandering Princess: Princess Helene of France, Duchess of Aosta 1871-1951

The Wandering Princess: Princess Helene of France, Duchess of Aosta 1871-1951

Edward W. Hanson

$65.00
Helene was a strong-willed princess, raised in France but closely connected with the court of Queen Victoria. After the premature end to a romance with Victoria's grandson, she married into the royal family of Italy. However, Helene began extended adventuresome trips into Africa where she became a big-game hunter, explorer and travel writer, escaping from an unhappy marriage and the boredom of court life. Her travels took her around the world, but her sense of royal duty brought her back to nurse aboard a hospital ship in Libyan waters, then to an important role as head of the Italian Red Cross nurses during the First World War while her husband headed Italy's Third Army, and her two sons served in the artillery and the navy. Afterwards, her strong Italian nationalism made her an ally to Gabriele d'Annunzio and Benito Mussolini, but the disastrous Second World War saw her grandchildren interned in Austria and her older son die as a British prisoner-of-war while she continued her charitable work in Naples. When the country voted to become a republic in 1946, Helene was the only member of the royal family allowed to remain in Italy with her second 'secret' husband.
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The Not So Subtle Art of Being a Fat Girl

The Not So Subtle Art of Being a Fat Girl

Tess Holliday

$32.99
Plus-size supermodel Tess Holliday’s passionate plea for modern women, whoever and wherever they are, to be comfortable in their own skin

Mum. Feminist. Size 26. Supermodel. Loud. Proud. Body activist. Beautiful. Business woman. Homemaker. Cat owner. Funny. Outspoken. Wife. Daughter. Lover. Fighter. Survivor.

Tess Holliday is many things and perfect is not one of them. But she loves her imperfections, after all they’ve formed the woman she is today… Tess’s number one rule in life is to love yourself – no matter who you are, what your faults may be, where you come from, or what dress size you wear! It’s this discovery that has helped her through everything from being absued and bullied about her weight, to raising a kid alone and fending off social media trolls.

Now, here in this amusingly candid account, the woman at the forefront of the body positive movement who has been credited with transforming the fashion industry, explains why you should be happy to make mistakes but learn from them, love your imperfections and be comfortable in your own skin – no matter how much you have!
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Chester B. Himes: A Biography

Chester B. Himes: A Biography

Lawrence P. Jackson

$49.95
The definitive biography of the groundbreaking African American author who had an extraordinary legacy on black writers globally.

Chester B. Himes has been called “one of the towering figures of the black literary tradition” (Henry Louis Gates Jr.), “the best writer of mayhem yarns since Raymond Chandler” (San Francisco Chronicle), and “a quirky American genius” (Walter Mosely). He was the twentieth century’s most prolific black writer, captured the spirit of his times expertly, and left a distinctive mark on American literature. Yet today he stands largely forgotten.

In this definitive biography of Chester B. Himes (1909–1984), Lawrence P. Jackson uses exclusive interviews and unrestricted access to Himes’s full archives to portray a controversial American writer whose novels unflinchingly confront sex, racism, and black identity. Himes brutally rendered racial politics in the best-selling novel If He Hollers Let Him Go, but he became famous for his Harlem detective series, including Cotton Comes to Harlem. A serious literary tastemaker in his day, Himes had friendships - sometimes uneasy - with such luminaries as Ralph Ellison, Carl Van Vechten, and Richard Wright.

Jackson’s scholarship and astute commentary illuminates Himes’s improbable life - his middle-class origins, his eight years in prison, his painful odyssey as a black World War II–era artist, and his escape to Europe for success. More than ten years in the writing, Jackson’s biography restores the legacy of a fascinating maverick caught between his aspirations for commercial success and his disturbing, vivid portraits of the United States. 20 illustrations.
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The Girl Who Escaped ISIS: Farida's Story

The Girl Who Escaped ISIS: Farida's Story

Farida Khalaf ,  Andrea C. Hoffmann

$22.99
In August 2014, Farida Khalaf was just a normal Yazidi girl, living in a village high in the mountains of northern Iraq. Then her village was attacked and swiftly taken by ISIS fighters, and her whole world changed. The jihadists murdered the men and the boys of her village, including her father and brothers, before taking Farida prisoner along with the rest of the women.

This is the story of what happened to Farida after she was captured- the beatings, the rapes, the markets where ISIS sold their female prisoners like cattle, and Farida's realisation that the more difficult and resistant she became, the harder it was for her captors to continue their atrocities against her. So she struggled, she bit, she kicked, she accused her captors of going against their religion, and then, one day, the door to her room was left unlocked. She took her chance along with 5 other women, and set out across the Syrian desert...

This is a story of incredible courage in the face of unthinkable atrocity. As the battle against ISIS continues to ravage the Middle East, The Girl Who Escaped Isis provides an astonishing perspective on this very terrifying global threat.
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Every Third Thought: On life, death and the endgame

Every Third Thought: On life, death and the endgame

Robert McCrum

$32.99
In 1995, at the age of forty two, Robert McCrum suffered a dramatic and near-fatal stroke, the subject of his acclaimed memoir My Year Off. Ever since that life-changing event, McCrum has lived in the shadow of death, unavoidably aware of his own mortality. And now, twenty-one years on, he is noticing a change: his friends are joining him there. Death has become his contemporaries’ every third thought. The question is no longer ‘who am I?’ but ‘how long have I got?’ and ‘what happens next?’

With the words of McCrum’s favourite authors as travel companions, Every Third Thought, takes us on a journey through a year and towards death itself. As he acknowledges his own and his friends’ ageing, McCrum confronts an existential question: in a world where we have learnt to live well at all costs, can we make peace with what Freud calls 'the necessity of dying'? Searching for answers leads him to others for advice and wisdom, and Every Third Thought is populated by the voices of brain surgeons, psychologists, cancer patients, hospice workers, writers and poets.

Witty, lucid and provocative, Every Third Thought is an enthralling exploration of what it means to approach the ‘end game’, and begin to recognize, perhaps reluctantly, that we are not immortal. Deeply personal and yet always universal, this is a book for anyone who finds themselves preoccupied by matters of life and death. It is both guide and companion.
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Gorilla and the Bird: A memoir of madness and a mother's love

Gorilla and the Bird: A memoir of madness and a mother's love

Zachary McDermott

$35.00
The story of a young man fighting to recover from a devastating psychotic break and the mother who refuses to give up on him.

McDermott was 25 and working as a public defender in Brooklyn when he awoke one morning to the conviction that he was being filmed a la The Truman Show in an audition for a TV pilot. He stepped onto NYC's streets and began an elaborate audition, interacting with the citizens of the city, convinced they were props sent by producers.

After an eventful day, Zach was arrested on a subway platform, wearing only shorts and sobbing, and was admitted to Bellevue Hospital where the audition really stopped making sense. It would prove to be the first of three hospitalizations for McDermott, each of them as terrifying as the psychotic episode itself.

But McDermott returned to himself in each case, none of which would have been possible without the vigilance of his mother, a woman he nicknamed Bird for the way she moves her head when upset. In return she named Zack the Gorilla for his barrel chest and excess of body hair, a pair of names that capture their relationship and their predicament.

GORILLA AND THE BIRD is an honest, powerful, and beautifully written testimony about going to the edge of sanity and back. It is tragic, terrifying, but also laugh-out-loud funny. As a public defender, McDermott was, and still is, on the front lines of criminal justice, race, and the dubious way mental health is diagnosed and treated. And his story showcases just how much more understanding we require for adequate treatment of a baffling and incurable condition.
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An Odyssey: A Father, A Son and an Epic: Longlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize 2017

An Odyssey: A Father, A Son and an Epic: Longlisted for the Baillie Gifford Prize 2017

Daniel Mendelsohn

$39.99
From the best-selling author of 'The Lost', a moving memoir about a father, a son and the lessons of a lifetime.

An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic twines an ongoing reading of the most popular and beloved works of literature, Homer's Odyssey - with its irresistible tales of travel and adventure, and its eternal themes of transformed identities and climactic recognitions-around a personal journey of modern family life. This intimate narrative is a father-son story: an account of a year-long reading of the poem that Mendelsohn undertakes with his ailing father, first in the classroom, then on their travels around the Mediterranean in the footsteps of Odysseus. How the ancient tale effects its own unexpected recognitions and transformations in the relationship between father and son, and eventually, in the enduring questions that they faced once he fell ill and began to die, becomes a moving adventure of both the real and the metaphorical.

Exploring the old poem, about long journeys and long marriages and long estrangements and about wanting to go home, An Odyssey illuminates some remarkable and unexpected similarities between the past of our forefathers and the present of our own fathers.
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Agatha Christie: A Biography

Agatha Christie: A Biography

Janet Morgan

$24.99
Janet Morgan's definitive and authorised biography of Agatha Christie, with a new retrospective foreword by the author. Agatha Christie (1890-1976), the world's bestselling author, is a public institution. Her creations, Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple, have become fiction's most legendary sleuths and her ingenuity has captured the imagination of generations of readers. But although she lived to a great age and was prolific, she remained elusively shy and determinedly private. Given sole access to family papers and other protected material, Janet Morgan's definitive biography unravels Agatha Christie's life, work and relationships, creating a revealing and faithfully honest portrait. The book has delighted readers of Christie's detective stories for more than 30 years with its clear view of her career and personality, and this edition includes a new foreword by the author reflecting on the longevity of Agatha Christie's extraordinary success and popularity.
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To Siri, With Love: A mother, her autistic son, and the kindness of a machine

To Siri, With Love: A mother, her autistic son, and the kindness of a machine

Judith Newman

$32.99
Based on the NEW YORK TIMES viral sensation, the uplifting story of a mother, her autistic son and the kindness of machines

No one would consider Judith Newman's domestic life normal. She and her husband keep separate apartments-his filled with twin grand pianos as befits a former opera singer; hers packed with the clutter and chaos of twin adolescent boys conceived late in life. And one of those boys is Gus, her sweet, complicated, autistic 13-year-old.

With honesty and humour, To Siri With Love chronicles one year in the life of Gus and the family around him - a family with the same crazy ups and downs as any other. And at the heart of the book lies Gus's passionate friendship with Siri, Apple's 'intelligent personal assistant'. Unlike her human counterparts, Siri always has the right answers to Gus's incessant stream of questions about the intricacies of national rail schedules, or box turtle varieties, and she never runs out of patience. She always makes sure Gus enunciates and even teaches him manners by way of her warm yet polite tone and her programmed insistence on civility.

Equal parts funny and touching, this is a book that will make your heart brim, and then break it. Warm, wise and always honest, Judith Newman shows us a new world where artificial intelligence is beginning to meet emotional intelligence - a world that will shape our children in ways both wonderful and unexpected.
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I am, I am, I am: Seventeen Brushes with Death - the Breathtaking Number One Bestseller

I am, I am, I am: Seventeen Brushes with Death - the Breathtaking Number One Bestseller

Maggie O'Farrell

$29.99
I AM, I AM, I AM is Sunday Times bestseller and Costa Novel-Award winner Maggie O'Farrell's electric and shocking memoir of the near death experiences that have punctuated her life; it will appeal to readers of Cheryl Strayed's WILD or Joan Didion's THE YEAR OF MAGICAL THINKING.A childhood illness she was not expected to survive. A teenage yearning to escape that nearly ended in disaster. A terrifying encounter on a remote path. A mismanaged labour in an understaffed hospital.This is a memoir with a difference: seventeen encounters with Maggie at different ages, in different locations, reveal to us a whole life in a series of tense, visceral snapshots. It is a book to make you question yourself: what would you do if your life was in danger? How would you react? And what would you stand to lose? I AM, I AM, I AM is a book you will finish newly conscious of your own vulnerability, and determined to make every heartbeat count.
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Living With A Dead Language: My Romance with Latin

Living With A Dead Language: My Romance with Latin

Ann Patty

$27.99
After thirty-five years as a book editor in New York City, Ann Patty stopped working and moved to the country. Bored, aimless, and lost in the woods, she hoped to challenge her restless, word-loving brain by beginning a serious study of Latin at local colleges.

As she begins to make sense of Latin grammar and syntax, her studies open unexpected windows into her own life. The louche poetry of Catullus calls up her early days in 1970's New York, Lucretius elucidates her intractable drivenness and her attraction to Buddhism, while Ovid’s verse conjures a delightful dimension to the flora and fauna that surround her. Women in Roman history, and an ancient tomb inscription give her new understanding and empathy for her tragic, long deceased mother. Finally, Virgil reconciles her to her new life no longer an urban exile, but a rustic scholar, writer and teacher. Along the way, she meets an impassioned cast of characters: professors, students and classicists outside of academia who keep Latin very much alive.

Written with humor, heart, and an infectious enthusiasm for words, Patty’s book is an object lesson in how learning and literature can transform the past and lead to an unexpected future.
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The Infidel and the Professor: David Hume, Adam Smith, and the Friendship That Shaped Modern Thought

The Infidel and the Professor: David Hume, Adam Smith, and the Friendship That Shaped Modern Thought

Dennis C. Rasmussen

$46.99
The story of the greatest of all philosophical friendships - and how it influenced modern thought

David Hume is widely regarded as the most important philosopher ever to write in English, but during his lifetime he was attacked as “the Great Infidel” for his skeptical religious views and deemed unfit to teach the young. In contrast, Adam Smith was a revered professor of moral philosophy, and is now often hailed as the founding father of capitalism. Remarkably, the two were best friends for most of their adult lives, sharing what Dennis Rasmussen calls the greatest of all philosophical friendships. The Infidel and the Professor is the first book to tell the fascinating story of the friendship of these towering Enlightenment thinkers - and how it influenced their world-changing ideas.

The book follows Hume and Smith’s relationship from their first meeting in 1749 until Hume’s death in 1776. It describes how they commented on each other’s writings, supported each other’s careers and literary ambitions, and advised each other on personal matters, most notably after Hume’s quarrel with Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Members of a vibrant intellectual scene in Enlightenment Scotland, Hume and Smith made many of the same friends (and enemies), joined the same clubs, and were interested in many of the same subjects well beyond philosophy and economics - from psychology and history to politics and Britain’s conflict with the American colonies. The book reveals that Smith’s private religious views were considerably closer to Hume’s public ones than is usually believed. It also shows that Hume contributed more to economics - and Smith contributed more to philosophy - than is generally recognized.

Vividly written, The Infidel and the Professor is a compelling account of a great friendship that had great consequences for modern thought.
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The Book of Emma Reyes: A Memoir in Correspondence

The Book of Emma Reyes: A Memoir in Correspondence

Emma Reyes ,  Daniel Alarcon

$29.99
This astonishing memoir of a childhood lived in extreme poverty in Latin America was hailed as an instant classic when first published in Colombia in 2012, nine years after the death of its author, who was encouraged in her writing by Gabriel Garcia Marquez. Comprised of letters written over the course of thirty years, it describes in vivid, painterly detail the remarkable courage and limitless imagination of a young girl growing up with nothing.

Emma was an illegitimate child, raised in a windowless room in Bogota with no water or toilet and only ingenuity to keep her and her sister alive. Abandoned by their mother, she and her sister moved to a convent housing 150 orphan girls, where they washed pots, ironed and mended laundry, scrubbed floors, cleaned bathrooms, and sewed garments and decorative cloths for church. Illiterate and knowing nothing of the outside world, Emma escaped at age nineteen, eventually coming to have a career as an artist and to befriend the likes of Frida Kahlo and Diego Rivera.

Far from self-pitying, the portrait that emerges from this clear-eyed account inspires awe at the stunning early life of a gifted writer whose talent remained hidden for far too long.
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Kafka: The Early Years

Kafka: The Early Years

Reiner Stach ,  Shelley Frisch

$46.95
How did Kafka become Kafka? This eagerly anticipated third and final volume of Reiner Stach's definitive biography of the writer answers that question with more facts and insight than ever before, describing the complex personal, political, and cultural circumstances that shaped the young Franz Kafka (1883–1924).

It tells the story of the years from his birth in Prague to the beginning of his professional and literary career in 1910, taking the reader up to just before the breakthrough that resulted in his first masterpieces, including "The Metamorphosis." Brimming with vivid and often startling details, Stach’s narrative invites readers deep inside this neglected period of Kafka’s life. The book’s richly atmospheric portrait of his German Jewish merchant family and his education, psychological development, and sexual maturation draws on numerous sources, some still unpublished, including family letters, schoolmates’ memoirs, and early diaries of his close friend Max Brod.

The biography also provides a colorful panorama of Kafka’s wider world, especially the convoluted politics and culture of Prague. Before World War I, Kafka lived in a society at the threshold of modernity but torn by conflict, and Stach provides poignant details of how the adolescent Kafka witnessed violent outbreaks of anti-Semitism and nationalism. The reader also learns how he developed a passionate interest in new technologies, particularly movies and airplanes, and why another interest - his predilection for the back-to-nature movement - stemmed from his
"nervous" surroundings rather than personal eccentricity.

The crowning volume to a masterly biography, this is an unmatched account of how a boy who grew up in an old Central European monarchy became a writer who helped create modern literature.
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Daughter of Gloriavale: My Life in a Religious Cult

Daughter of Gloriavale: My Life in a Religious Cult

Lilia Tarawa

$32.99
One young woman's true story of growing up in Gloriavale Christian Community the repressive cult led by her grandfather, the charismatic and controlling Hopeful Christian.

In this personal account, Lilia Tarawa exposes the shocking secrets of the cult, with its rigid rules and oppressive control of women. She describes her fear when her family questioned Gloriavale's beliefs and practices.

When her parents fled with their children, Lilia was forced to make a desperate choice: to stay or to leave. No matter what she chose, she would lose people she loved.

In the outside world, Lilia struggled. Would she be damned to hell for leaving? How would she learn to navigate this strange place called 'the world'? And would she ever find out the truth about the criminal convictions against her grandfather?
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Dylan Thomas: The Collected Letters Volume 1: 1931-1939

Dylan Thomas: The Collected Letters Volume 1: 1931-1939

Dylan Thomas

$35.00
Dylan Thomas's letters bring the fascinating and tempestuous poet and his times to life in a way that no biography can.The letters begin in the poet's schooldays and end just before his death in New York at the age of 39. In between, he loved, wrote, drank, begged and borrowed his way through a flamboyant life. He was an enthusiastic critic of other writers' work and the letters are full of his thoughts on the work of his contemporaries, from T.S. Eliot and W.H. Auden to Stephen Spender and Cecil Day-Lewis.A lifetime of letters tell a remarkable story, each taking the reader a little further along the path of the poet's self-destruction, but written with such verve and lyricism that somehow the reader's sympathies never quite abandon him.
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Dylan Thomas: The Collected Letters Volume 2: 1939-1953

Dylan Thomas: The Collected Letters Volume 2: 1939-1953

Dylan Thomas

$35.00
Dylan Thomas's letters bring the fascinating and tempestuous poet and his times to life in a way that no biography can.The letters begin in the poet's schooldays and end just before his death in New York at the age of 39. In between, he loved, wrote, drank, begged and borrowed his way through a flamboyant life. He was an enthusiastic critic of other writers' work and the letters are full of his thoughts on the work of his contemporaries, from T.S. Eliot and W.H. Auden to Stephen Spender and Cecil Day-Lewis.A lifetime of letters tell a remarkable story, each taking the reader a little further along the path of the poet's self-destruction, but written with such verve and lyricism that somehow the reader's sympathies never quite abandon him.
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My Father's Wake: How the Irish Teach Us to Live, Love and Die

My Father's Wake: How the Irish Teach Us to Live, Love and Die

Kevin Toolis

$29.99
Death is a whisper in the Anglo-Saxon world. But on a remote island, off the coast of County Mayo, death has a louder voice. Along with reports of incoming Atlantic storms, the local radio station runs a thrice-daily roll-call of the recently departed. The islanders have no fear of death. They go in great numbers, often with young children, to wake with their dead. They keep vigil through the night with the corpse and share in the sorrow of the bereaved. They bear the burden of the coffin on their shoulders and dig the grave with their own hands. The living and the dead remain bound together in the Irish Wake - the oldest rite of humanity.For twenty years writer and filmmaker Kevin Toolis hunted death in famine, war and plague across the world before finding the answer to his quest on the island of his forebears. In this beautifully written and highly original memoir, he gives an intimate, eye-witness account of the death and wake of his father, and explores the wider history of the Irish Wake. With an uplifting, positive message at its heart, My Father's Wake celebrates the spiritual depth of the Irish Wake and shows how we too can find a better way to deal with our mortality, by living and loving in the acceptance of death.
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Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate

Crash Override: How Gamergate (Nearly) Destroyed My Life, and How We Can Win the Fight Against Online Hate

Zoe Quinn

$49.95
You've heard the stories about the dark side of the internet - hackers, #gamergate, anonymous mobs attacking an unlucky victim, and revenge porn - but they remain just that: stories. Surely these things would never happen to you.

Zoe Quinn used to feel the same way. She is a video game developer whose ex-boyfriend published a crazed blog post cobbled together from private information, half-truths, and outright fictions, along with a rallying cry to the online hordes to go after her. They answered in the form of a so-called movement known as #gamergate - they hacked her accounts; stole nude photos of her; harassed her family, friends, and colleagues; and threatened to rape and murder her. But instead of shrinking into silence as the online mobs wanted her to, she raised her voice and spoke out against this vicious online culture and for making the internet a safer place for everyone.

In the years since #gamergate, Quinn has helped thousands of people with her advocacy and online-abuse crisis resource Crash Override Network. From locking down victims' personal accounts to working with tech companies and lawmakers to inform policy, she has firsthand knowledge about every angle of online abuse, what powerful institutions are (and aren't) doing about it, and how we can protect our digital spaces and selves.

Crash Override offers an up-close look inside the controversy, threats, and social and cultural battles that started in the far corners of the internet and have since permeated our online lives. Through her story - as target and as activist - Quinn provides a human look at the ways the internet impacts our lives and culture, along with practical advice for keeping yourself and others safe online.
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Win or Learn: MMA, Conor McGregor and Me: A Trainer's Journey

Win or Learn: MMA, Conor McGregor and Me: A Trainer's Journey

John Kavanagh

$24.99
The revelatory story of the man behind the success of Conor McGregor.

Growing up in Dublin, John Kavanagh was a skinny kid who was frequently bullied. After suffering a bad beating when he intervened to help a woman who was being attacked, he decided he had to learn to defend himself. Before long, he was training fighters in a tiny shed and promoting the earliest MMA events in Ireland. And then, a cocky young lad called Conor McGregor walked into his gym...

Now, John Kavanagh tells his own remarkable life story - which is at the heart of the global rise of MMA. Kavanagh has become a guru to young men and women seeking to master the arts of combat and earned a reputation as one of the best coaches alive. His portrait of McGregor - who he has seen in his lowest moments and in his greatest triumphs - is a revelation.

Win or Learn is an inspiring chronicle of persistence, discipline, and triumph against the odds.
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