Cuisine and Culture: A History of Food and People

Cuisine and Culture: A History of Food and People

Cuisine and Culture: A History of Food and People [Second Edition] by Linda Civitello
John Wiley & Sons | 2008 | ISBN: 0471741728 | PDF | 12.25MB


An illuminating account of how history shapes our diets—now revised and updated.


Why did the ancient Romans believe cinnamon grew in swamps guarded by giant killer bats? How did the African cultures imported by slavery influence cooking in the American South? What does the 700-seat McDonald's in Beijing serve in the age of globalization? With the answers to these and many more such questions, Cuisine and Culture, Second Edition presentsan engaging, informative, and witty narrative of the interactions among history, culture, and food.


From prehistory and the earliest societies around the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers to today's celebrity chefs, Cuisine and Culture, Second Edition presents a multicultural and multiethnic approach that draws connections between major historical events and how and why these events affected and defined the culinary traditions of different societies. Fully revised and updated, this Second Edition offers new and expanded features and coverage, including:


  • New Crossing Cultures sections providing brief sketches of foods and food customs moving between cultures
  • More holiday histories, food fables, and food chronologies
  • Discussions of food in the Byzantine, Portuguese, Turkish/Ottoman, and Austro-Hungarian empires
  • Greater coverage of the scientific genetic modification of food, from Mendel in the 19th century to the contemporary GM vs. organic food debate
  • Speculation on the future of food
  • And much more!

Complete with sample recipes and menus, as well as revealing photographs and illustrations, Cuisine and Culture, Second Edition is the essential survey history for students of food history.


A People's Guide to Los Angeles

A People's Guide to Los Angeles

A People's Guide to Los Angeles by Laura Pulido, Laura Barraclough, Wendy Cheng
University of California Press | 2012 | ISBN: 0520270819 | EPUB | 21.52MB


A People's Guide to Los Angeles offers an assortment of eye-opening alternatives to L.A.'s usual tourist destinations. It documents 115 little-known sites in the City of Angels where struggles related to race, class, gender, and sexuality have occurred. They introduce us to people and events usually ignored by mainstream media and, in the process, create a fresh history of Los Angeles. Roughly dividing the city into six regions--North Los Angeles, the Eastside and San Gabriel Valley, South Los Angeles, Long Beach and the Harbor, the Westside, and the San Fernando Valley--this illuminating guide shows how power operates in the shaping of places, and how it remains embedded in the landscape.


Start Late, Finish Rich

Start Late, Finish Rich

Start Late, Finish Rich: A No-Fail Plan for Achieving Financial Freedom at Any Age by David Bach
Crown Business | 2006 | ISBN: 0767919475 | EPUB | 2.25MB


Over and over, people share their fears with David Bach, America’s leading money coach and the number-one national best-selling author of The Automatic Millionaire. “If only I had started saving when I was younger!” they say. “Is there any hope for me?”


There IS hope, and help is here at last!


In Start Late, Finish Rich, David Bach takes the “Finish Rich” wisdom that has already helped millions of people and tailors it specifically to all of us who forgot to save, procrastinated, or got sidetracked by life’s unexpected challenges.


Whether you are in your thirties, forties, fifties, or even older, Bach shows that you really can start late and still live and finish rich – and you can get your plan in place fast. In a motivating, swift read you learn how to ramp up the road to financial security with the principles of spend less, save more, make more – and most important, LIVE MORE. And he gives you the time tested plan to do it.


The Start Late, Finish Rich promise is bold and clear:


  • Even if you are buried in debt – there is still hope.
  • You can get rich in real estate – by starting small.
  • Find your “Latte Factor” – and turbo charge it to save money you didn’t know you had.
  • You can start a business on the side – while you keep your old job and continue earning a paycheck.
  • You can spend less, save more and make more – and it doesn’t have to hurt.

David Bach gives you step-by-step instructions, worksheets, phone numbers and website addresses --everything you need to put your Start Late plan into place right away. And he shares the stories of ordinary Americans who have turned their lives around, at thirty, forty, fifty, even sixty years of age, and are now financially free. They did it, and now it’s your turn. With David Bach at your side, it’s never too late to change your financial destiny. It’s never too late to live your dreams. It’s never too late to be free.


Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy

Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy

Twilight of the Elites: America after Meritocracy by Christopher Hayes
Crown | 2012 | ISBN: 0307720454 | EPUB | 2.05MB


A powerful and original argument that traces the roots of our present crisis of authority to an unlikely source: the meritocracy.


Over the past decade, Americans watched in bafflement and rage as one institution after another – from Wall Street to Congress, the Catholic Church to corporate America, even Major League Baseball – imploded under the weight of corruption and incompetence. In the wake of the Fail Decade, Americans have historically low levels of trust in their institutions; the social contract between ordinary citizens and elites lies in tatters.


How did we get here? With Twilight of the Elites, Christopher Hayes offers a radically novel answer. Since the 1960s, as the meritocracy elevated a more diverse group of men and women into power, they learned to embrace the accelerating inequality that had placed them near the very top. Their ascension heightened social distance and spawned a new American elite--one more prone to failure and corruption than any that came before it.


Mixing deft political analysis, timely social commentary, and deep historical understanding, Twilight of the Elites describes how the society we have come to inhabit – utterly forgiving at the top and relentlessly punitive at the bottom – produces leaders who are out of touch with the people they have been trusted to govern. Hayes argues that the public's failure to trust the federal government, corporate America, and the media has led to a crisis of authority that threatens to engulf not just our politics but our day-to-day lives.


Upending well-worn ideological and partisan categories, Hayes entirely reorients our perspective on our times. Twilight of the Elites is the defining work of social criticism for the post-bailout age.


Nixon and Mao: The Week That Changed the World

Nixon and Mao: The Week That Changed the World

Nixon and Mao: The Week That Changed the World by Margaret MacMillan
Random House | 2007 | ISBN: 140006127X | EPUB | 1.77MB


With the publication of her landmark bestseller Paris 1919, Margaret MacMillan was praised as “a superb writer who can bring history to life” (The Philadelphia Inquirer). Now she brings her extraordinary gifts to one of the most important subjects today–the relationship between the United States and China–and one of the most significant moments in modern history. In February 1972, Richard Nixon, the first American president ever to visit China, and Mao Tse-tung, the enigmatic Communist dictator, met for an hour in Beijing. Their meeting changed the course of history and ultimately laid the groundwork for the complex relationship between China and the United States that we see today.


That monumental meeting in 1972–during what Nixon called “the week that changed the world”–could have been brought about only by powerful leaders: Nixon himself, a great strategist and a flawed human being, and Mao, willful and ruthless. They were assisted by two brilliant and complex statesmen, Henry Kissinger and Chou En-lai. Surrounding them were fascinating people with unusual roles to play, including the enormously disciplined and unhappy Pat Nixon and a small-time Shanghai actress turned monstrous empress, Jiang Qing. And behind all of them lay the complex history of two countries, two great and equally confident civilizations: China, ancient and contemptuous yet fearful of barbarians beyond the Middle Kingdom, and the United States, forward-looking and confident, seeing itself as the beacon for the world.


Nixon thought China could help him get out of Vietnam. Mao needed American technology and expertise to repair the damage of the Cultural Revolution. Both men wanted an ally against an aggressive Soviet Union. Did they get what they wanted? Did Mao betray his own revolutionary ideals? How did the people of China react to this apparent change in attitude toward the imperialist Americans? Did Nixon make a mistake in coming to China as a supplicant? And what has been the impact of the visit on the United States ever since?


Weaving together fascinating anecdotes and insights, an understanding of Chinese and American history, and the momentous events of an extraordinary time, this brilliantly written book looks at one of the transformative moments of the twentieth century and casts new light on a key relationship for the world of the twenty-first century.


Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World

Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World

Paris 1919: Six Months That Changed the World by Margaret MacMillan
Random House | 2003 | ISBN: 0307432963 | EPUB | 3.63MB


Between January and July 1919, after “the war to end all wars,” men and women from around the world converged on Paris to shape the peace. Center stage, for the first time in history, was an American president, Woodrow Wilson, who with his Fourteen Points seemed to promise to so many people the fulfillment of their dreams. Stern, intransigent, impatient when it came to security concerns and wildly idealistic in his dream of a League of Nations that would resolve all future conflict peacefully, Wilson is only one of the larger-than-life characters who fill the pages of this extraordinary book. David Lloyd George, the gregarious and wily British prime minister, brought Winston Churchill and John Maynard Keynes. Lawrence of Arabia joined the Arab delegation. Ho Chi Minh, a kitchen assistant at the Ritz, submitted a petition for an independent Vietnam.


For six months, Paris was effectively the center of the world as the peacemakers carved up bankrupt empires and created new countries. This book brings to life the personalities, ideals, and prejudices of the men who shaped the settlement. They pushed Russia to the sidelines, alienated China, and dismissed the Arabs. They struggled with the problems of Kosovo, of the Kurds, and of a homeland for the Jews.


The peacemakers, so it has been said, failed dismally; above all they failed to prevent another war. Margaret MacMillan argues that they have unfairly been made the scapegoats for the mistakes of those who came later. She refutes received ideas about the path from Versailles to World War II and debunks the widely accepted notion that reparations imposed on the Germans were in large part responsible for the Second World War.


A landmark work of narrative history, Paris 1919 is the first full-scale treatment of the Peace Conference in more than twenty-five years. It offers a scintillating view of those dramatic and fateful days when much of the modern world was sketched out, when countries were created—Iraq, Yugoslavia, Israel—whose troubles haunt us still.


And the Money Kept Rolling In (and Out) Wall Street

And the Money Kept Rolling In (and Out) Wall Street

And the Money Kept Rolling In (and Out) Wall Street, the IMF, and the Bankrupting of Argentina by Paul Blustein
PublicAffairs | 2006 | ISBN: 1586483811 | EPUB | 485.15KB


In the 1990s, few countries were more lionized than Argentina for its efforts to join the club of wealthy nations. Argentina's policies drew enthusiastic applause from the IMF, the World Bank and Wall Street. But the club has a disturbing propensity to turn its back on arrivistes and cast them out. That was what happened in 2001, when Argentina suffered one of the most spectacular crashes in modern history. With it came appalling social and political chaos, a collapse of the peso, and a wrenching downturn that threw millions into poverty and left nearly one-quarter of the workforce unemployed.


Paul Blustein, whose book about the IMF, The Chastening, was called "gripping, often frightening" by The Economist and lauded by the Wall Street Journal as "a superbly reported and skillfully woven story," now gets right inside Argentina's rise and fall in a dramatic account based on hundreds of interviews with top policymakers and financial market players as well as reams of internal documents. He shows how the IMF turned a blind eye to the vulnerabilities of its star pupil, and exposes the conduct of global financial market players in Argentina as redolent of the scandals — like those at Enron, WorldCom and Global Crossing — that rocked Wall Street in recent years. By going behind the scenes of Argentina's debacle, Blustein shows with unmistakable clarity how sadly elusive the path of hope and progress remains to the great bulk of humanity still mired in poverty and underdevelopment.


Making the World Safe for Capitalism

Making the World Safe for Capitalism

Making the World Safe for Capitalism: How Iraq Threatened the US Economic Empire and had to be Destroyed by Christopher Doran
Pluto Press | 2012 | ISBN: 0745332226 | PDF | 2.88MB


The Iraq War defined the first decade of the twenty-first century – leading to mass protests and raising profound questions about domestic politics and the use of military force. Yet most explanations of the war have a narrow focus either on political personalities or oil.


Christopher Doran provides a unique perspective, arguing that the drive to war came from the threat Iraq might pose to American economic hegemony if the UN sanctions regime was ended. Doran argues that this hegemony is rooted in third-world debt and corporate market access. It was protection of these arrangements that motivated US action, not Iraq's alleged weapons of mass destruction or a simplistic desire to seize its oil.


This book will provide new insights on the war which still casts a shadow over global politics, and will have wide appeal to all those concerned about the Middle East, world peace, and global development.


The Bedford Boys [Audiobook]

The Bedford Boys [Audiobook]

The Bedford Boys: One American Town's Ultimate D-day Sacrifice [Audiobook] by Alex Kershaw
AudioGO | 2008 | ASIN: B001IYK5PM | MP3@64 kbps | 8 hrs 18 mins | 228.38Mb


June 6, 1944 has been written about extensively by American authors almost from the moment it happened. The invasion to free western Europe has filled perhaps more pages than any other event in history. Beyond books, D-Day has been the subject of more movies than one can count. Among the most famous films about D-Day was The Longest Day and a generation later Saving Private Ryan. What else can be said about the invasion of Europe?

Somehow, the story of the young men from Beford, Virginia has been overlooked. When you read the book you'll ask the same question I did....Why didn't Stephen Spielberg make his movie about WWII using this story instead of the fictional story of Private Ryan. When you read the Bedford Boys by Alex Kershaw (The Few, Escape from the Deep, The Liberator) you'll ask the same question.


Bedford, Virginia is a small blue ridge mountain town of 3000. Before WWII jobs were scarce. Most of the men of the town joined the national guard unit to augment their meager incomes. Most earned a dollar a day for the days they trained. When the war started their unit became part of the 116th Infantry, one of the most battered units in Europe. On D-Day twenty-one of Bedford's sons would die on the beaches of Normandy. No other town of any size would suffer such a devastating loss. Twenty-one sons, brothers, fathers, boyfriends all lost; lost as completely as anyone can be lost....erased with the sweep of an hour hand. It boggles the mind even today nearly 60 years later.


Alex Kershaw does a wonderful job of bringing these young men to life. These young soldiers aren't just characters on the stage of history. As you learn about them, wome in more detail than the others, they become real people. The book follows them from prewar Bedford, through training, and on the a blood stained beach in France. The book is brutal. The book is poetic. You won't soon forget it.


The Bedford Boys is well researched. While Kershaw's coverage of the landings is strong on details it is never the less accurate. He uses the narratives of the few survivors to great effect. - By Robert Busko


Hitler's Holy Relics

Hitler's Holy Relics

Hitler's Holy Relics: A True Story of Nazi Plunder and the Race to Recover the Crown Jewels of the Holy Roman Empire By Sidney Kirkpatrick
Simon & Schuster | 2011 | ISBN: 1416590633 | MOBI | 1.79MB


From Paris to Stalingrad, the Nazis systematically plundered all manner of art and antiquities. But the first and most valuable treasures they looted were the Crown Jewels of the Holy Roman Empire. In Hitler’s Holy Relics, bestselling author Sidney Kirkpatrick tells the riveting and never before told true story of how an American college professor turned Army sleuth recovered these cherished symbols of Hitler’s Thousand Year Reich before they could become a rallying point in the creation of a Fourth and equally unholy Reich.


Anticipating the Allied invasion of Nazi Germany, Reichsführer Heinrich Himmler had ordered a top-secret bunker carved deep into the bedrock beneath Nürnberg castle. Inside the well-guarded chamber was a specially constructed vault that held the plundered treasures Hitler valued the most: the Spear of Destiny (reputed to have been used to pierce Christ’s side while he was on the cross) and the Crown Jewels of the Holy Roman Empire, ancient artifacts steeped in medieval mysticism and coveted by world rulers from Charlemagne to Napoleon. But as Allied bombers rained devastation upon Nürnberg and the U.S. Seventh Army prepared to invade the city Hitler called “the soul of the Nazi Party,” five of the most precious relics, all central to the coronation ceremony of a would be Holy Roman Emperor, vanished from the vault.


Who took them? And why? The mystery remained unsolved for months after the war’s end, until the Supreme Allied Commander, General Dwight D. Eisenhower, ordered Lieutenant Walter Horn, a German-born art historian on leave from U.C. Berkeley, to hunt down the missing treasures.To accomplish his mission, Horn must revisit the now rubble strewn landscape of his youth and delve into the ancient legends and arcane mysticism surrounding the antiquities that Hitler had looted in his quest for world domination. Horn searches for clues in the burnt remains of Himmler’s private castle and follows the trail of neo Nazi “Teutonic Knights” charged with protecting a vast hidden fortune in plundered gold and other treasure.


The Balkan Wars 1912 1913

The Balkan Wars 1912 1913

The Balkan Wars 1912 1913 by Jacob Gould Schurman
Book Jungle | 2008 | ISBN: 1438504209 | EPUB | 202.32KB


Jacob Shurman (1864 – 1942) was an American educator who was educated at Acadia College in Nova Scotia and the University of London. Shurman then spent some time studying in Europe. He was professor of English literature, political economy and psychology at Acadia College in 1880-1882, of metaphysics and English literature at Dalhousie College, Halifax, Nova Scotia, in 1882-1886, and of philosophy (Sage professor) at Cornell University in 1886-1892. Schurman served as United States Ambassador to Greece in 1912-13, Ambassador to China between 1921 and 1925, and then as Ambassador to Germany between 1925 and 1929. The Balkan Wars 1912-1913 was published in 1916. This work begins “This War of Many Nations had its origin in Balkan situation. It began on July 28 with the declaration of the Dual Monarchy to the effect that from that moment Austria-Hungary was in a state of war with Servia. And the fundamental reason for this declaration as given in the note or ultimatum to Servia was the charge that the Servian authorities had encouraged the Pan-Serb agitation which seriously menaced the integrity of Austria-Hungary and had already caused the assassination at Serajevo of the Heir to the Throne.”


And If I Perish: Frontline U.S. Army Nurses in World War II

And If I Perish: Frontline U.S. Army Nurses in World War II

And If I Perish: Frontline U.S. Army Nurses in World War II by Evelyn Monahan, Rosemary Neidel-Greenlee
Anchor | 2004 | ISBN: 140003129X | EPUB | 5.82MB


In World War II, 59,000 women voluntarily risked their lives for their country as U.S. Army nurses. When the war began, some of them had so little idea of what to expect that they packed party dresses; but the reality of service quickly caught up with them, whether they waded through the water in the historic landings on North African and Normandy beaches, or worked around the clock in hospital tents on the Italian front as bombs fell all around them.


For more than half a century these women’s experiences remained untold, almost without reference in books, historical societies, or military archives. After years of reasearch and hundreds of hours of interviews, Evelyn M. Monahan and Rosemary Neidel-Greenlee have created a dramatic narrative that at last brings to light the critical role that women played throughout the war. From the North African and Italian Campaigns to the Liberation of France and the Conquest of Germany, U.S. Army nurses rose to the demands of war on the frontlines with grit, humor, and great heroism. A long overdue work of history, And If I Perish is also a powerful tribute to these women and their inspiring legacy.


The Economic Consequences of the Peace

The Economic Consequences of the Peace

The Economic Consequences of the Peace by John Maynard Keynes
Digireads | 2011 | ISBN: 1420942948 | EPUB | 582.41KB


John Maynard Keynes (1883-1946) was a British economist whose theories had a profound impact on twentieth century history and economic practice. Born and raised in Cambridge, England to highly successful, intelligent parents John and Florence Keynes, he attended Eton and King's College, Cambridge where he joined the intellectual group called "The Apostles" with the likes of Leonard and Virginia Woolf, E. M. Forster and Bertrand Russell. After attending the Paris Peace Conference as economic advisor to Prime Minister Lloyd George, Keynes resigned from a prominent position in the Treasury and published "The Economic Consequences of the Peace" (1919), a stinging indictment of the Versailles Treaty. Keynes expressed his opposition to the political practices that were taking place, and the work gained him instant notoriety. The impact of this, and other, works on economic method, theory and policy led to what is now termed the "Keynesian Revolution" of the twentieth century, and helped shape modern macroeconomics.


The Age of Napoleon

The Age of Napoleon

The Age of Napoleon by Alistair Horne
Modern Library | 2006 | ISBN: 0812975553 | EPUB | 350.31KB


The age of Napoleon transformed Europe, laying the foundations for the modern world. Now Alistair Horne, one of the great chroniclers of French history gives us a fresh account of that remarkable time.


Born into poverty on the remote island of Corsica, he rose to prominence in the turbulent years following the French Revolution, when most of Europe was arrayed against France. Through a string of brilliant and improbable victories (gained as much through his remarkable ability to inspire his troops as through his military genius), Napoleon brought about a triumphant peace that made him the idol of France and, later, its absolute ruler.


Heir to the Revolution, Napoleon himself was not a revolutionary; rather he was a reformer and a modernizer, both liberator and autocrat. Looking to the Napoleonic wars that raged on the one hand, and to the new social order emerging on the other, Horne incisively guides readers through every aspect of Napoleon’s two-decade rule: from France’s newfound commitment to an aristocracy based on merit rather than inheritance, to its civil code (Napoleon’s most important and enduring legacy), to censorship, cuisine, the texture of daily life in Paris, and the influence of Napoleon abroad. At the center of Horne’s story is a singular man, one whose ambition, willpower, energy and ability to command changed history, and continues to fascinate us today.


La Belle France: A Short History

La Belle France: A Short History

La Belle France: A Short History by Alistair Horne
Knopf | 2005 | ISBN: 1400041406 | EPUB | 11.77MB


La Belle France is a sweeping, grand narrative written with all the verve, erudition and vividness that are the hallmarks of the acclaimed British historian Alistair Horne. It recounts the hugely absorbing story of the country that has contributed to the world so much talent, style and political innovation.


Beginning with Julius Caesar’s division of Gaul into three parts, Horne leads us—in quick, illuminating vignettes—through the ages: from Charlemagne, Philippe-Auguste and the Sun King, Louis XIV, to Cardinal Richelieu and Napoleon Bonaparte, Charles de Gaulle and Jacques Chirac. He shows us a country that has suffered and survived seemingly endless warfare: the Hundred Years’ War, the French Revolution, the Napoleonic wars, the Franco-Prussian War, World Wars I and II and colonial battles in Indochina and Algeria. He gives us luminous portraits of the nation’s great leaders, but he is as thorough and compelling in his discussions of the lives of the peasants, the haute bourgeoisie, the sansculottes of the Revolution and the great philosophers and writers, artists and composers—Montaigne, Voltaire, Balzac, Renoir, Bizet, Monet, Proust, Satie and Sartre, among them—who have helped shape Western thought and culture.


This is a captivating, beautifully illustrated and comprehensive yet concise history of France.


The Life of Thomas More

The Life of Thomas More
The Life of Thomas More by Peter Ackroyd
Anchor, Knopf Doubleday | 2012 | ISBN: 0307823016 | EPUB | 5.24MB

Peter Ackroyd's The Life of Thomas More is a masterful reconstruction of the life and imagination of one of the most remarkable figures of history. Thomas More (1478-1535) was a renowned statesman; the author of a political fantasy that gave a name to a literary genre and a worldview (Utopia); and, most famously, a Catholic martyr and saint.


Born into the professional classes, Thomas More applied his formidable intellect and well-placed connections to become the most powerful man in England, second only to the king. As much a work of history as a biography, The Life of Thomas More gives an unmatched portrait of the everyday, religious, and intellectual life of the early sixteenth century. In Ackroyd's hands, this renowned "man for all seasons" emerges in the fullness of his complex humanity; we see the unexpected side of his character--such as his preference for bawdy humor--as well as his indisputable moral courage.


The Spirit of London

The Spirit of London

The Spirit of London: Johnson's Life of London Updated to Include London in 2012 by Boris Johnson
HarperCollins | 2012 | ISBN: 0007516223 | EPUB | 10.26MB


First published as Johnson’s Life of London, now released with new material following Jubilee and Olympic celebrations in 2012. This updated history of London shows that the ingenuity, diversity, creativity and enterprise of the city are second to none.


London’s buildings may be famous, London’s history may be lengthy and illustrious, but it is London’s people who have given, and continue to give, the city its exuberant and exhilarating profile.


London of the Olympic and Jubilee summer displayed Londoners on a world stage, but this is a city which has always lived on the energy and skills of its people, drawn to the capital from all over the country and the world.


Boris Johnson shares with us his pleasure at London’s vitality and unique character, and selects the people who in his view have contributed so much to the spirit of London – some very famous figures, some more obscure. He includes everyone from the Romans to one of the author’s predecessors as mayor, Dick Whittington; from John Wilkes (a strong upholder of the freedom of the press) to J.W. Turner; from Chaucer to Gandhi, and through to modern times.


The Day My Brain Exploded: A True Story

The Day My Brain Exploded: A True Story

The Day My Brain Exploded: A True Story by Ashok Rajamani
Algonquin Books | 2013 | ISBN: 1616201665 | EPUB | 811.77KB


After a full-throttle brain bleed at the age of twenty-five, Ashok Rajamani, a first-generation Indian American, had to relearn everything: how to eat, how to walk and to speak, even things as basic as his sexual orientation. With humor and insight, he describes the events of that day (his brain exploded just before his brother’s wedding!), as well as the long, difficult recovery period. In the process, he introduces readers to his family—his principal support group, as well as a constant source of frustration and amazement. Irreverent, coruscating, angry, at times shocking, but always revelatory, his memoir takes the reader into unfamiliar territory, much like the experience Alice had when she fell down the rabbit hole. That he lived to tell the story is miraculous; that he tells it with such aplomb is simply remarkable.


More than a decade later he has finally reestablished a productive artistic life for himself, still dealing with the effects of his injury—life-long half-blindness and epilepsy— but forging ahead as a survivor dedicated to helping others who have suffered a similar catastrophe.


The Orientalist

The Orientalist

The Orientalist: Solving the Mystery of a Strange and Dangerous Life by Tom Reiss
Random House | 2005 | ISBN: 1588364445 | EPUB | 843.54KB


Part history, part cultural biography, and part literary mystery, The Orientalist traces the life of Lev Nussimbaum, a Jew who transformed himself into a Muslim prince and became a best-selling author in Nazi Germany.


Born in 1905 to a wealthy family in the oil-boom city of Baku, at the edge of the czarist empire, Lev escaped the Russian Revolution in a camel caravan. He found refuge in Germany, where, writing under the names Essad Bey and Kurban Said, his remarkable books about Islam, desert adventures, and global revolution, became celebrated across fascist Europe. His enduring masterpiece, Ali and Nino–a story of love across ethnic and religious boundaries, published on the eve of the Holocaust–is still in print today.


But Lev’s life grew wilder than his wildest stories. He married an international heiress who had no idea of his true identity–until she divorced him in a tabloid scandal. His closest friend in New York, George Sylvester Viereck–also a friend of both Freud’s and Einstein’s–was arrested as the leading Nazi agent in the United States. Lev was invited to be Mussolini’s official biographer–until the Fascists discovered his “true” identity. Under house arrest in the Amalfi cliff town of Positano, Lev wrote his last book–discovered in a half a dozen notebooks never before read by anyone–helped by a mysterious half-German salon hostess, an Algerian weapons-smuggler, and the poet Ezra Pound.


Tom Reiss spent five years tracking down secret police records, love letters, diaries, and the deathbed notebooks. Beginning with a yearlong investigation for The New Yorker, he pursued Lev’s story across ten countries and found himself caught up in encounters as dramatic and surreal, and sometimes as heartbreaking, as his subject’s life. Reiss’s quest for the truth buffets him from one weird character to the next: from the last heir of the Ottoman throne to a rock opera-composing baroness in an Austrian castle, to an aging starlet in a Hollywood bungalow full of cats and turtles.


As he tracks down the pieces of Lev Nussimbaum’s deliberately obscured life, Reiss discovers a series of shadowy worlds–of European pan-Islamists, nihilist assassins, anti-Nazi book smugglers, Baku oil barons, Jewish Orientalists–that have also been forgotten. The result is a thoroughly unexpected picture of the twentieth century–of the origins of our ideas about race and religious self-definition, and of the roots of modern fanaticism and terrorism. Written with grace and infused with wonder, The Orientalist is an astonishing book.


The King of Vodka

The King of Vodka

The King of Vodka: The Story of Pyotr Smirnov and the Upheaval of an Empire by Linda Himelstein
HarperCollins | 2009 | ISBN: 006187616X | EPUB | 1.77MB


In this sweeping history of vodka scion Pyotr Smirnov and his family, distinguished journalist Linda Himelstein plumbs a great riddle of Russian history through the story of a humble serf who rose to create one of the most celebrated business empires the world has ever known. At the center of this vivid narrative, Pyotr Smirnov comes to life as a hero of wonderful complexity—a man of intense ambition and uncanny business sense, a patriarch of a family that would help define Russian society and suffer from the Revolution's aftermath, and a loyalist to a nation that would one day honor him as a treasure of the state.


Born in a small village in 1831, Smirnov relied on vodka—a commodity that in many ways defines Russia—to turn a life of scarcity and anonymity into one of immense wealth and international recognition. Starting from the backrooms and side streets of 19th century Moscow, Smirnov exploited a golden age of emancipation and brilliant grassroots marketing strategies to popularize his products and ensconce his brand within the thirsts and imaginations of drinkers around the world. His vodka would be gulped in the taverns of Russia and Europe, praised with accolades at World Fairs, and become a staple on the tables of Tsars. His improbable ascent—set against a sobriety crusade supported by Chekhov and Tolstoy, mounting political uprisings and labor strikes, the eventual monopolization of the vodka trade by the state—would crumble amidst the chaos of the Bolshevik revolution. Only a set of bizarre coincidences—including an incredible prison escape by one of Smirnov's sons in 1919—would prevent Smirnov's legacy from fading into oblivion.


Set against a backdrop of political and ideological currents that would determine the course of global history—from the fall of the Tsars to the rise of Communism, from vodka's popularization by none other than James Bond to Smirnoff's emergence as a multi-billion dollar brand—Smirnov's story of triumph and tragedy is a captivating historical touchstone. The King of Vodka is much more than a biography of an extraordinary man. It is a work of narrative history on an epic scale.


The Elements of Style

The Elements of Style

The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr
Start Publishing LLC | 2012 | ISBN: 1625585004 | EPUB | 150.19KB


The Elements of Style (1918), by William Strunk, Jr., and E.B. White, is an American English writing style guide. It is the best-known, most influential prescriptive treatment of English grammar and usage, and often is required reading and usage in U.S. high school and university composition classes. This edition of The Elements of Style details eight elementary rules of usage, ten elementary principles of composition, "a few matters of form," and a list of commonly misused words and expressions.


Our Kind of People A Continent's Challenge, A Country's Hope

Our Kind of People A Continent's Challenge, A Country's Hope

Our Kind of People: A Continent's Challenge, A Country's Hope by Uzodinma Iweala
HarperCollins | 2012 | ISBN: 0062097679 | EPUB | 1.28MB


In 2005 Uzodinma Iweala stunned readers and critics alike with Beasts of No Nation, his debut novel about child soldiers in West Africa. Now his return to Africa has produced Our Kind of People, a non-fiction account of the AIDS crisis every bit as startling and original. HIV/AIDS has been reported as one of the most destructive diseases in recent memory—tearing apart communities and ostracizing the afflicted. But the emphasis placed on death, destruction, and despair hardly captures the many and varied effects of the epidemic, or the stories of the extraordinary people who live and die under its watch.


Our Kind of People opens our minds to these stories, introducing a new set of voices and altering the way we speak and think about disease. Iweala embarks on a remarkable journey through his native Nigeria, meeting individuals and communities that are struggling daily to understand both the impact and meaning of HIV/AIDS. He speaks with people from all walks of life—the ill and the healthy, doctors, nurses, truck drivers, sex workers, shopkeepers, students, parents, and children. Their testimonies are by turns uplifting, alarming, humorous, and surprising, and always unflinchingly candid. Integrating his own experiences with these voices, Iweala creates at once a deeply personal exploration of life, love, and connection in the face of disease, and an incisive critique of our existing ideas of health and happiness.


Beautifully written and heartbreakingly honest, Our Kind of People goes behind the headlines of an unprecedented epidemic to show the real lives it affects, illuminating the scope of the crisis and a continent's valiant struggle.


The Book of Books The Radical Impact of the King James Bible

The Book of Books The Radical Impact of the King James Bible

The Book of Books: The Radical Impact of the King James Bible 1611-2011 by Melvyn Bragg
Counterpoint Press | 2011 | ISBN: 1582438447 | EPUB | 830.26KB


The King James Bible has often been called the "Book of Books", both in itself and in what it stands for. Since its publication in 1611, it has been the best-selling book in the world, and many believe, it has had the greatest impact.


The King James Bible has spread the Protestant faith. It has also been the greatest influence on the enrichment of the English language and its literature. It has been the Bible of wars from the British Civil War in the seventeenth century to the American Civil War two centuries later, and it has been carried into battle in innumerable conflicts since then. Its influence on social movements--particularly involving women in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries--and politics was profound. It was crucial to the growth of democracy. It was integral to the abolition of slavery, and it defined attitudes to modern science, education, and sex.


As Lord Melvyn Bragg’s The Adventure of English explored the history of our language, so The Book of Books reveals the extraordinary and still-felt impact of a work created 400 years ago.


Self-Hypnosis And Subliminal Technology

Self-Hypnosis And Subliminal Technology

Self-Hypnosis And Subliminal Technology: A How-to Guide for Personal-Empowerment Tools You Can Use Anywhere by Eldon Taylor
Hay House | 2012 | ISBN: 1401937586 | PDF | 4.01MB


Self-hypnosis and subliminal communication have long been mired in mystique, urban legend and disinformation. The truth is that both of these techniques are backed by extensive research demonstrating their efficacy and more importantly, once learned, both tools can be customized for any situation and can be used almost anytime and anywhere.


Join Eldon Taylor as he unravels the truth behind these technologies, and demonstrates how they are invaluable tools in your self-help armamentarium. In this essential guide, you will learn:


  • How to create your own custom subliminal program to break through subconscious blockages.
  • How subliminal communication works and why it is so much more powerful than simply using affirmations.
  • 5 steps for putting yourself into a hypnotic state.
  • Several techniques to assist you in going even deeper into a hypnotic state.
  • How you can create new habits, uncover hidden conflicts that often cause self-destructive patterns and discover new solutions to old problems!

Hypnosis and subliminal communication have been used for medical purposes as well as the metaphysical. Once you have mastered these two technologies, you will be able to use them anytime and anywhere to achieve a wide range of goals, from weight loss to stop smoking, from building your self esteem to maximizing your own healing potential, from enhancing your learning ability to dealing with anger and stress, and so much more. Finally, you can take complete control of your own self-help program!


How Proust Can Change Your Life

How Proust Can Change Your Life
How Proust Can Change Your Life by Alain De Botton
2013 | EPUB | 4.69MB

Alain de Botton combines two unlikely genres--literary biography and self-help manual--in the hilarious and unexpectedly practical How Proust Can Change Your Life.

Who would have thought that Marcel Proust, one of the most important writers of our century, could provide us with such a rich source of insight into how best to live life? Proust understood that the essence and value of life was the sum of its everyday parts. As relevant today as they were at the turn of the century, Proust's life and work are transformed here into a no-nonsense guide to, among other things, enjoying your vacation, reviving a relationship, achieving original and unclichéd articulation, being a good host, recognizing love, and understanding why you should never sleep with someone on a first date. It took de Botton to find the inspirational in Proust's essays, letters and fiction and, perhaps even more surprising, to draw out a vivid and clarifying portrait of the master from between the lines of his work.

Here is Proust as we have never seen or read him before: witty, intelligent, pragmatic. He might well change your life.

Black Fire: The True Story of the Original Tom Sawyer

Black Fire: The True Story of the Original Tom Sawyer

Black Fire: The True Story of the Original Tom Sawyer--and of the Mysterious Fires That Baptized Gold Rush-Era San Francisco by Robert Graysmith
Crown | 2012 | ISBN: 0307720586 | EPUB | 7.61MB


The first biography of the little-known real-life Tom Sawyer (a friend of Mark Twain during his brief tenure as a California newspaper reporter), told through a harrowing account of Sawyer's involvement in the hunt for a serial arsonist who terrorized mid-nineteenth century San Francisco.


When 28-year-old San Francisco Daily Morning Call reporter Mark Twain met Tom Sawyer at a local bathhouse in 1863, he was seeking a subject for his first novel. As Twain steamed, played cards, and drank beer with Sawyer (a volunteer firefighter, customs inspector, and local hero responsible for having saved ninety lives at sea), he had second thoughts about Shirley Tempest, his proposed book about a local girl firefighter, and began to envision a novel of wider scope. Twain learned that a dozen years earlier the then eighteen-year-old New York-born Sawyer had been a “Torch Boy,” one of the youths who raced ahead of the volunteer firemen’s hand-drawn engines at night carrying torches to light the way, always aware that a single spark could reduce the all-wood city of San Francisco to ashes in an instant. At that time a mysterious serial arsonist known by some as “The Lightkeeper” was in the process of burning San Francisco to the ground six times in eighteen months – the most disastrous and costly series of fires ever experienced by any American metropolis.


Black Fire is the most thorough and accurate account of Sawyer’s relationship with Mark Twain and of the six devastating incendiary fires that baptized one of the modern world’s favorite cities. Set amid a scorched landscape of burning roads, melting iron warehouses, exploding buildings, and deadly gangs who extorted and ruled by fear, it includes the never-before-told stories of Sawyer’s heroism during the sinking of the steamship Independence and the crucial role Sawyer and the Torch Boys played in solving the mystery of the Lightkeeper.


Drawing on archival sources such as actual San Francisco newspaper interviews with Sawyer and the handwritten police depositions of the arrest of the Lightkeeper, bestselling author Robert Graysmith vividly portrays the gritty, corrupt, and violent world of Gold Rush-era San Francisco, overrun with gunfighters, hooligans, hordes of gold prospectors, crooked politicians, and vigilantes. By chronicling how Sawyer took it upon himself to investigate, expose, and stop the arsonist, Black Fire details – for the first time – Sawyer’s remarkable life and illustrates why Twain would later feel compelled to name his iconic character after his San Francisco buddy when he wrote The Adventures of Tom Sawyer.


The Pocket Outdoor Survival Guide

The Pocket Outdoor Survival Guide

The Pocket Outdoor Survival Guide: The Ultimate Guide for Short-Term Survival by J Wayne Fears
Skyhorse Publishing | 2011 | ISBN: 1616080507 | EPUB | 4.35MB


Don’t panic! Here are the essential techniques you need to cope with a short-term survival situation.


The Pocket Outdoor Survival Guide provides the essential knowledge that hikers, campers, canoeists, hunters, anglers, and anyone who spends time in the outdoors needs to deal with short-term survival situations. This handy guidebook will give you the knowledge to make it through any outdoor adventure, planned or unplanned.


Discover everything you need to know about:


• Trip planning

• Survival kits

• Search and rescue

• Coping with bad weather

• Emergency signaling

• Shelter

• Sleeping warm

• Fire

• Dealing with insects

• Safe drinking water

• Food

• Avoiding hypothermia

• Countering fear

• And more!


Don’t be caught without a copy of J. Wayne Fears’s The Pocket Outdoor Survival Guide on your next outdoor adventure! 160 color and 50 black-and-white photographs.