Pilgrim's Wilderness [Audiobook]

Pilgrim's Wilderness [Audiobook]
Pilgrim's Wilderness: A True Story of Faith and Madness on the Alaska Frontier [Audiobook] by Tom Kizzia, read by Fred Sanders
2013 | MP3@64 kbs + EPUB | 10 hrs 15 mins | 281.86MB

Into the Wild meets Helter Skelter in this riveting true story of a modern-day homesteading family in the deepest reaches of the Alaskan wilderness – and of the chilling secrets of its maniacal, spellbinding patriarch.

When Papa Pilgrim appeared in the Alaska frontier outpost of McCarthy with his wife and fifteen children in tow, his new neighbors had little idea of the trouble to come. The Pilgrim Family presented themselves as a shining example of the homespun Christian ideal, with their proud piety and beautiful old-timey music, but their true story ran dark and deep. Within weeks, Papa had bulldozed a road through the mountains to the new family home at an abandoned copper mine, sparking a tense confrontation with the National Park Service and forcing his ghost town neighbors to take sides in an ever-more volatile battle over where a citizen’s rights end and the government’s power begins.

In Pilgrim’s Wilderness, veteran Alaska journalist Tom Kizzia unfolds the remarkable, at times harrowing, story of a charismatic spinner of American myths who was not what he seemed, the townspeople caught in his thrall, and the family he brought to the brink of ruin. As Kizzia discovered, Papa Pilgrim was in fact the son of a rich Texas family with ties to Hoover’s FBI and strange, oblique connections to the Kennedy assassination and the movie stars of Easy Rider. And as his fight with the government in Alaska grew more intense, the turmoil in his brood made it increasingly difficult to tell whether his children were messianic followers or hostages in desperate need of rescue. In this powerful piece of Americana, written with uncommon grace and high drama, Kizzia uses his unparalleled access to capture an era-defining clash between environmentalists and pioneers ignited by a mesmerizing sociopath who held a town and a family captive.

See What I'm Saying [Audiobook]

See What I'm Saying [Audiobook]
See What I'm Saying: The Extraordinary Powers of Our Five Senses [Audiobook] by Lawrence D Rosenblum
2010 | MP3@64 kbps | 11 hrs 03 mins | 306.19MB

An in-depth look at the science that explains the hidden powers of the five senses and how to harness their potential.

In this revealing romp through the mysteries of human perception, University of California psychologist and researcher Lawrence Rosenblum explores the astonishing abilities of the five senses - skills of which most of us are remarkably unaware.

Drawing on groundbreaking insights into the brain's plasticity and integrative powers, including findings from his own research, Rosenblum examines how our brains use the subtlest information to perceive the world. A blind person, for example, can "see" through batlike echolocation; a Master Sommelier can actually taste the grape variety, region, and vintage of an obscure wine; and pheromones can subliminally signal a lover's compatibility.

To illustrate these implicit perceptual skills, Rosenblum takes us from the "beep" baseball fields where blind players swing at beeping balls, to a pitch-black restaurant where diners experience taste without the aid of sight. We accompany him on a visit to an Oscar-winning animator who explains how the public's expertise in perceiving faces has made his job so difficult; and a visit with a supermodel to discuss why beautiful faces are irresistible.

New studies have shed light on the surpising power and reach of our senses. It turns out that our brains use entire forms of perceptual information of which we are largely unaware. We can hear things that don't make sounds, feel things without touching them, see things with no form, and smell things that have no discernable odor.

Throughout the book, Rosenblum not only illuminates the fascinating science behind our hidden perceptual powers, but demonstrates how increased awareness of these abilities can actually lead us to enhance how we use them.

Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet

Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet
Here on Earth: A Natural History of the Planet by Tim Flannery
2011 | EPUB | 3.52MB

Beginning at the moment of creation with the Big Bang, Here on Earth explores the evolution of Earth from a galactic cloud of dust and gas to a planet with a metallic core and early signs of life within a billion years of being created. In a compelling narrative, Flannery describes the formation of the Earth’s crust and atmosphere, as well as the transformation of the planet’s oceans from toxic brews of metals (such as iron, copper, and lead) to life-sustaining bodies covering 70 percent of the planet’s surface.

Life, Flannery shows, first appeared in these oceans in the form of microscopic plants and bacteria, and these metals served as catalysts for the earliest biological processes known to exist. From this starting point, Flannery tells the fascinating story of the evolution of our own species, exploring several early human species—from the diminutive creatures (the famed hobbits) who lived in Africa around two million years ago to Homo erectus—before turning his attention to Homo sapiens. Drawing on Charles Darwin’s and Alfred Russell Wallace’s theories of evolution and Lovelock’s Gaia hypothesis, Here on Earth is a dazzling account of life on our planet.

Mortal Sins: Sex, Crime, and the Era of Catholic Scandal

Mortal Sins: Sex, Crime, and the Era of Catholic Scandal
Mortal Sins: Sex, Crime, and the Era of Catholic Scandal by Michael D'Antonio
2013 | EPUB | 471.02KB

An explosive, sweeping account of the scandal that has sent the Catholic Church into a tailspin -- and the brave few who fought for justice.

In the mid-1980s a dynamic young monsignor assigned to the Vatican’s embassy in Washington set out to investigate the problem of sexually abusive priests. He found a scandal in the making, confirmed by secret files revealing complaints that had been hidden from police and covered up by the Church hierarchy. He also understood that the United States judicial system was eager to punish offenders and those who aided them. He presented all of this to the American bishops, warning that the Church could be devastated by negative publicity and bankrupted by its legal liability. They ignored him.

Meanwhile, a young lawyer listened to a new client describe an abusive sexual history with a priest that began when he was ten years old. His parents' complaints were downplayed by Church officials who offered them money to go away. The lawyer saw a claim that any defendant would want to settle. Then he began to suspect he was onto something bigger, involving thousands of priests who had abused countless children while the Church had done almost nothing about it. The lawsuit he filed would touch off a legal war of historic and global proportions.

Part history, part journalism, and part true-crime thriller, Michael D'Antonio's Mortal Sins brings to mind landmark books such as All the President’s Men, And the Band Played On, and The Informant, as it reveals a long and ferocious battle for the soul of the largest and oldest organization in the world.

Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story

Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story
Conspiracy of Fools: A True Story by Kurt Eichenwald
2005 | EPUB + MOBI | 821.86KB/1.47MB

Enron was a $100-billion-a-year company in October 2001--America's seventh-largest. The Houston-based energy firm enjoyed warm ties with newly installed President George W. Bush. Earnings were up 26 percent from the previous quarter, while Fortune magazine had named Enron the country's most innovative company six years in a row. Less than two months later, Enron filed for bankruptcy in the biggest corporate failure in history. Enron became synonymous with the greed and fraud of the go-go high-tech stock bubble of the late 1990s--the worst of a series of spectacular corporate collapses that also took down WorldCom, Tyco, and Global Crossing.

What went wrong? Veteran New York Times financial journalist Kurt Eichenwald does an epic job of telling Enron's story in his 742-page tome Conspiracy of Fools. Eichenwald, a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize in 2000, also authored The Informant, an acclaimed account of a vast international price-fixing scandal at Archer Daniels Midland. Conspiracy of Fools tells the Enron tale with a cinematic narrative style, relying almost exclusively on scene and dialogue to bring his account to vivid life. We see how federal regulators opened the doors for the Enron fraud early on when they let the company loosen up its accounting rules and essentially cook its books. We read how Enron bullied Wall Street firms into issuing favorable reports about its share price by threatening to take away lucrative banking fees. Eichenwald also reveals how Enron manipulated electricity prices during the California energy crisis of 2000. Eichenwald's book is less successful in situating the Enron debacle in its wider context--the cycle of market speculation that reached a historic summit in the dot-com bubble. Was Enron just a cautionary sign of the greed and lack of ethics of a few bad apples, or was it more symptomatic of an entire market system? That may be a debate for another book. --Alex Roslin

The Informant: A True Story

The Informant: A True Story
The Informant: A True Story by Kurt Eichenwald
2001 | EPUB | 716.83KB

From an award-winning New York Times investigative reporter comes an outrageous story of greed, corruption, and conspiracy—which left the FBI and Justice Department counting on the cooperation of one man . . .

It was one of the FBI's biggest secrets: a senior executive with America's most politically powerful corporation, Archer Daniels Midland, had become a confidential government witness, secretly recording a vast criminal conspiracy spanning five continents. Mark Whitacre, the promising golden boy of ADM, had put his career and family at risk to wear a wire and deceive his friends and colleagues. Using Whitacre and a small team of agents to tap into the secrets at ADM, the FBI discovered the company's scheme to steal millions of dollars from its own customers.

But as the FBI and federal prosecutors closed in on ADM, using stakeouts, wiretaps, and secret recordings of illegal meetings around the world, they suddenly found that everything was not all that it appeared. At the same time Whitacre was cooperating with the Feds while playing the role of loyal company man, he had his own agenda he kept hidden from everyone around him—his wife, his lawyer, even the FBI agents who had come to trust him with the case they had put their careers on the line for. Whitacre became sucked into his own world of James Bond antics, imperiling the criminal case and creating a web of deceit that left the FBI and prosecutors uncertain where the lies stopped and the truth began.

In this gripping account unfolds one of the most captivating and bizarre tales in the history of the FBI and corporate America. Meticulously researched and richly told by New York Times senior writer Kurt Eichenwald, The Informant re-creates the drama of the story, beginning with the secret recordings, stakeouts, and interviews with suspects and witnesses to the power struggles within ADM and its board—including the high-profile chairman Dwayne Andreas, F. Ross Johnson, and Brian Mulroney—to the big-gun Washington lawyers hired by ADM and on up through the ranks of the Justice Department to FBI Director Louis Freeh and Attorney General Janet Reno.

A page-turning real-life thriller that features deadpan FBI agents, crooked executives, idealistic lawyers, and shady witnesses with an addiction to intrigue, The Informant tells an important and compelling story of power and betrayal in America.

Confidence Men

Confidence Men
Confidence Men: Wall Street, Washington, and the Education of a President by Ron Suskind
2011 | EPUB | 1.11MB

The hidden history of Wall Street and the White House comes down to a single, powerful, quintessentially American concept: confidence. Both centers of power, tapping brazen innovations over the past three decades, learned how to manufacture it.

Until August 2007, when that confidence finally began to crumble.

In this gripping and brilliantly reported book, Ron Suskind tells the story of what happened next, as Wall Street struggled to save itself while a man with little experience and soaring rhetoric emerged from obscurity to usher in “a new era of responsibility.” It is a story that follows the journey of Barack Obama, who rose as the country fell, and offers the first full portrait of his tumultuous presidency.

Wall Street found that straying from long-standing principles of transparency, accountability, and fair dealing opened a path to stunning profits. Obama’s determination to reverse that trend was essential to his ascendance, especially when Wall Street collapsed during the fall of an election year and the two candidates could audition for the presidency by responding to a national crisis. But as he stood on the stage in Grant Park, a shudder went through Barack Obama. He would now have to command Washington, tame New York, and rescue the economy in the first real management job of his life.

The new president surrounded himself with a team of seasoned players—like Rahm Emanuel, Larry Summers, and Tim Geithner—who had served a different president in a different time. As the nation’s crises deepened, Obama’s deputies often ignored the president’s decisions—“to protect him from himself”—while they fought to seize control of a rudderless White House. Bitter disputes—between men and women, policy and politics—ruled the day. The result was an administration that found itself overtaken by events as, year to year, Obama struggled to grow into the world’s toughest job and, in desperation, take control of his own administration.

Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Ron Suskind introduces readers to an ensemble cast, from the titans of high finance to a new generation of reformers, from petulant congressmen and acerbic lobbyists to a tight circle of White House advisers—and, ultimately, to the president himself, as you’ve never before seen him. Based on hundreds of interviews and filled with piercing insights and startling disclosures, Confidence Men brings into focus the collusion and conflict between the nation’s two capitals—New York and Washington, one of private gain, the other of public purpose—in defining confidence and, thereby, charting America’s future.

All the President's Men

All the President's Men
All the President's Men by Bob Woodward, Carl Bernstein
2007 | EPUB | 321.43KB

In the most devastating political detective story of the century, two Washington Post reporters, whose brilliant, Pulitzer Prize-winning investigation smashed the Watergate scandal wide open, tell the behind-the-scenes drama the way it really happened.

Beginning with the story of a simple burglary at Democratic headquarters and then continuing with headline after headline, Bernstein and Woodward kept the tale of conspiracy and the trail of dirty tricks coming -- delivering the stunning revelations and pieces in the Watergate puzzle that brought about Nixon's scandalous downfall. Their explosive reports won a Pulitzer Prize for The Washington Post and toppled the President. This is the book that changed America.

Crazy Sh*t Presidents Said

Crazy Sh*t Presidents Said
Crazy Sh*t Presidents Said: The Most Surprising, Shocking, and Stupid Statements Ever Made by U.S. Presidents, from George Washington to Barack Obama by Robert Schnakenberg
2012 | EPUB + MOBI | 2.55/2.52MB

With the country more polarized than ever, the 2012 presidential election is expected to be one of the most heated in our country’s history. Among all the polished speeches and great sound bites, sometimes in that torrent of official and unofficial remarks, some real head-scratchers slip out. Crazy Sh*t Presidents Said consists of 1,000 crazy, surprising, eye-popping, historically verified quotations, arranged thematically by subject.

“I don’t know much about Americanism, but it’s a damn good word with which to carry an election.” —W. G. Harding

“I have often wanted to drown my troubles, but I can’t get my wife to go swimming.” —Jimmy Carter

“I always figured the American public wanted a solemn ass for president, so I went along with them.” —C. Coolidge

“If I don’t have a woman for three days, I get terrible headaches.”—John F. Kennedy

American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company

American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company
American Icon: Alan Mulally and the Fight to Save Ford Motor Company by Bryce G Hoffman
2013 | EPUB + MOBI | 0.67/2.17MB

THE INSIDE STORY OF THE EPIC TURNAROUND OF FORD MOTOR COMPANY UNDER THE LEADERSHIP OF CEO ALAN MULALLY.

At the end of 2008, Ford Motor Company was just months away from running out of cash. With the auto industry careening toward ruin, Congress offered all three Detroit automakers a bailout. General Motors and Chrysler grabbed the taxpayer lifeline, but Ford decided to save itself. Under the leadership of charismatic CEO Alan Mulally, Ford had already put together a bold plan to unify its divided global operations, transform its lackluster product lineup, and overcome a dys­functional culture of infighting, backstabbing, and excuses. It was an extraordinary risk, but it was the only way the Ford family—America’s last great industrial dynasty—could hold on to their company.

Mulally and his team pulled off one of the great­est comebacks in business history. As the rest of Detroit collapsed, Ford went from the brink of bankruptcy to being the most profitable automaker in the world.

American Icon is the compelling, behind-the-scenes account of that epic turnaround. On the verge of collapse, Ford went outside the auto industry and recruited Mulally—the man who had already saved Boeing from the deathblow of 9/11—to lead a sweeping restructuring of a company that had been unable to overcome decades of mismanage­ment and denial. Mulally applied the principles he developed at Boeing to streamline Ford’s inefficient operations, force its fractious executives to work together as a team, and spark a product renaissance in Dearborn. He also convinced the United Auto Workers to join his fight for the soul of American manufacturing.

Bryce Hoffman reveals the untold story of the covert meetings with UAW leaders that led to a game-changing contract, Bill Ford’s battle to hold the Ford family together when many were ready to cash in their stock and write off the company, and the secret alliance with Toyota and Honda that helped prop up the Amer­ican automotive supply base.

In one of the great management narratives of our time, Hoffman puts the reader inside the boardroom as Mulally uses his celebrated Business Plan Review meet­ings to drive change and force Ford to deal with the painful realities of the American auto industry.

Hoffman was granted unprecedented access to Ford’s top executives and top-secret company documents. He spent countless hours with Alan Mulally, Bill Ford, the Ford family, former executives, labor leaders, and company directors. In the bestselling tradition of Too Big to Fail and The Big Short, American Icon is narrative nonfiction at its vivid and colorful best.

Music & Eros

Music & Eros
Music & Eros by Hans-Jurgen Dopp
2008 | PDF | 83.78MB

Music is not only a pleasure for the ear, it is the echo of the heartbeat, breath and desire. Professor Dopp revisits music as the catalyst for dance, love and sex. From the music sheet to dance and through instruments, music is the expression of our profound desires and most violent passions. The text revisits the history of music and art from the dances of the first men to pop and electronic music and through belly dance.

Michael Freeman's Photo School: Portrait

Michael Freeman's Photo School: Portrait
Michael Freeman's Photo School: Portrait by Michael Freeman, Gary Eastwood
2013 | PDF | 22.45MB

At some point, all photographers are called upon to shoot a proper portrait combining technical skill with personable demeanour to capture someone in their best possible light. Michael Freeman teaches you how to achieve flattering portrait results with a variety of both traditional and modern styles.

Learn how to set your subjects at ease and bring out their natural beauty with a friendly yet professional attitude. Feel confident giving directions on posing and stance with a thorough review of the classic approaches, from head-and-shoulder shots to full-length compositions, and everything in between.

Take creative control of your portrait sessions by learning to manipulate the light to your own ends whether that means bouncing sunlight off a reflector or building your own studio setups with multiple fl ash units. The complex science of photographic lighting is explained in straightforward and easy-to-understand language, with abundant and inspirational examples. Finally, master the fundamentals of post-production finishing techniques to make sure every portrait looks its absolute best. Your subjects will thank you for it!

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Black & White

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Black & White
Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Black & White
2012 | PDF | 207.0MB

From timeless, elegant portraits to gritty, graphic street shots, the possibilities of black and white are endless, enticing, and exciting. Recognising this potential within every shot, and knowing the digital-editing tools and techniques to maximize its effect are essential steps to building up your photographic repertoire.

Having first established the fundamental aesthetic choices that go into every B&W conversion, Michael Freeman goes on to review the noble tradition of black and white, detailing its numerous styles and fashions, with step-by-step instructions on how to achieve each effect, regardless of your particular software. Presented in a straightforward and easy-to-understand format, you will soon be able to both visualise exactly how you want your final image to appear, and achieve that signature look with efficient workflows and powerful conversion techniques.

These skills open up new worlds of photographic opportunity everywhere you look, and encourage artistic growth just as much as they inspire you to try new styles and exciting treatments.

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Digital Editing

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Digital Editing
Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Digital Editing
2012 | PDF | 53.53MB

Unlock the full potential of each and every image with reliable post-production techniques that will become a fundamental part of your photography. Using easily followed, step-by-step instructions, Michael Freeman demystifies the complexities of today’s high-powered editing programs to provide you with effective digital workflows tailored to your particular photographic style, and using whichever editing programs you are most comfortable with.

Begin by exploring the fundamental aspects of image optimisation, from fixing exposure and making colour adjustments, to sharpening and noise reduction essential steps that elevate simple snapshots to stunning images. Then move on to explore the advanced possibilities of black-and-white conversion, panoramic stitching, HDR imaging, and more. Learn to recognise the right tools for the job, saving you time on the computer and ensuring each image gets the treatment it deserves.

Whether you’re salvaging an underexposed shot or building a composite of multiple images, these techniques will give your photography a professional and refined style.

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Composition

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Composition
Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Composition by Michael Freeman with Daniela Bowker
2012 | PDF | 94.15MB

The essential concept for which there is no Auto mode, quality composition is what distinguishes a snapshot from a phenomenal photograph. Learn how to develop your photographic eye not to only seek out engaging subjects, but also to approach them from the best angle, in optimal light, for maximum effect.

Going beyond the basics, Michael Freeman reveals why certain photographs succeed, demystifying the abstract aesthetics to give practical rules and real-world advice that will enhance your images and inspire your creativity. Presented in a straightforward, down-to-earth method, these compositional principles will become second nature, giving you the creative freedom to seek out new, stunning shots of your own. What’s more, you will develop reliable skills to approach a wide variety of subjects from portraits to landscapes and everything in between and to consistently present them in a strong, compelling composition.

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Exposure

Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Exposure
Michael Freeman’s Photo School: Exposure
2012 | PDF | 34.73MB

Leave the Auto mode in the dust and take complete creative control of your images with this comprehensive guide to photography’s most fundamental principles. Michael Freeman brings his years of experience to the table, teaching you all the professional techniques so you can nail the optimal exposure in-camera at the moment of capture, every time.

Learn the particular nuances of shutter speed, aperture, and ISO, understand the specific ways in which they interact within each exposure, and master their usage to quickly and efficiently achieve your creative vision, regardless of the lighting conditions or subject characteristics. Get under the hood of your camera with an in-depth look at how each of its metering modes works, so you can know exactly how to find the best options and settings for each scene. Then review some of the most challenging exposure scenarios from a bride against a shadowed background to the neon lights of city streets all explained with reliable methods and established techniques for delivering stunning results.

Michael Freeman's 101 Top Digital Photography Tips

Michael Freeman's 101 Top Digital Photography Tips
Michael Freeman's 101 Top Digital Photography Tips
2011 | PDF | 49.57MB

For the very first time, renowned international photographer and author Michael Freeman reveals all the insider hints and secrets that most professional photographers don't want you to know.

Photographers of all skill levels - point-and-shooters, enthusiastic amateurs, and even fellow professionals - will find plenty of invaluable advice drawn from Michael Freeman's many years in the field.

101 Top Digital Photography Tips explains how to use your digital camera efficiently and creatively, and how to think and shoot like a seasoned pro. This book will show you how to make the most of your digital camera, even if your resources are limited covering everything from shooting in poor weather conditions, faking complex lighting setups, and shooting for depth of field, to fixing damaged files and organizing your photos effectively. You might know Photoshop inside and out, but if you're not using your camera to the best of its abilities, you're likely to be disappointed with the results. Michael Freeman's 101 Top Digital Photography Tips will make sure you get the best possible images to work with in the first place, regardless of your current skill level.

The Photographer's Eye

The Photographer's Eye
The Photographer's Eye: Composition and Design for Better Digital Photos by Michael Freeman
2007 | PDF | 24.01MB

Design is the single most important factor in creating a successful photograph. The ability to see the potential for a strong picture and then organize the graphic elements into an effective, compelling composition has always been one of the key skills in making photographs.

Digital photography has brought a new, exciting aspect to design - first because the instant feedback from a digital camera allows immediate appraisal and improvement; and second because image-editing tools make it possible to alter and enhance the design after the shutter has been pressed. This has had a profound effect on the way digital photographers take pictures.

Now published in sixteen languages, The Photographer's Eye continues to speak to photographers everywhere. Reaching 100,000 copies in print in the US alone, and 300,000+ worldwide, it shows how anyone can develop the ability to see and shoot great digital photographs. The book explores all the traditional approaches to composition and design, but crucially, it also addresses the new digital technique of shooting in the knowledge that a picture will later be edited, manipulated, or montaged to result in a final image that may be very different from the one seen in the viewfinder.

Blogging for Photographers

Blogging for Photographers
Blogging for Photographers: Explore your creativity & build your audience by Jolie O'Dell
2013 | PDF | 16.08MB

Whether you want to show off your portfolio, promote your business, find new ways to challenge yourself, or pick up a new hobby that puts you in touch with huge numbers of photography enthusiasts around the world, this approachable, comprehensive, and spirited guide will show you all you need to know. Beginning with a solid foundation of the best blogging platforms, ideal hardware setups, and optimal design formats, your blog will be up and running in no time.

To keep the posts flowing, learn to create valuable tutorials, entertaining personal stories, stunning portfolios, and other forms of quality content that will keep your readers coming back for more. Photo competitions, social media networking, advertising and revenue channels, moderating comments, forging connections with the global community all the essential blogging skills are covered to get you on your way!

Blogging for Creatives

Blogging for Creatives
Blogging for Creatives: How Deisgners, Astists, Crafters and Writers can Blog to Make Contacts, Win Business and Build Success by Robin Houghton
2012 | PDF | 31.14MB

Blogging for Creatives teaches you everything you need to know about how to design and profit from a beautiful blog that people will want to return to again and again. Complete with hundreds of tips, tricks and motivational stories from artistic bloggers who have started from scratch, Blogging for Creatives covers how to publish and host a blog, as well as keeping it fresh, staying motivated and forging connections.

With advice on which blogging platform to choose, essential tools and accessories, and how to take your blog to the next level, whether youre looking to create a platform for your creative trade, an inspirational journal, or a hub for people with similar tastes and interests, learn how to benefit from being part of the blogosphere in this accessible, non-techie guide.

Blackbird House: A Novel

Blackbird House: A Novel
Blackbird House: A Novel by Alice Hoffman
2005 | EPUB + MOBI | 166.34KB/251.28KB

With “incantatory prose” that “sweeps over the reader like a dream,” (Philadelphia Inquirer), Hoffman follows her celebrated bestseller The Probable Future, with an evocative work that traces the lives of the various occupants of an old Massachusetts house over a span of two hundred years.

In a rare and gorgeous departure, beloved novelist Alice Hoffman weaves a web of tales, all set in Blackbird House. This small farm on the outer reaches of Cape Cod is a place that is as bewitching and alive as the characters we meet: Violet, a brilliant girl who is in love with books and with a man destined to betray her; Lysander Wynn, attacked by a halibut as big as a horse, certain that his life is ruined until a boarder wearing red boots arrives to change everything; Maya Cooper, who does not understand the true meaning of the love between her mother and father until it is nearly too late. From the time of the British occupation of Massachusetts to our own modern world, family after family’s lives are inexorably changed, not only by the people they love but by the lives they lead inside Blackbird House.

These interconnected narratives are as intelligent as they are haunting, as luminous as they are unusual. Inside Blackbird House more than a dozen men and women learn how love transforms us and how it is the one lasting element in our lives. The past both dissipates and remains contained inside the rooms of Blackbird House, where there are terrible secrets, inspired beauty, and, above all else, a spirit of coming home.

From the writer Time has said tells "truths powerful enough to break a reader’s heart” comes a glorious travelogue through time and fate, through loss and love and survival. Welcome to Blackbird House.

The Red Garden [Audiobook]

The Red Garden [Audiobook]
The Red Garden [Audiobook] by Alice Hoffman, read by Nancy Travis
2011 | MP3 VBR + EPUB + MOBI | 7 hrs 18 mins | 202.34MB

The Red Garden introduces us to the luminous and haunting world of Blackwell, Massachusetts, capturing the unexpected turns in its history and in our own lives.

In exquisite prose, Hoffman offers a transforming glimpse of small-town America, presenting us with some three hundred years of passion, dark secrets, loyalty, and redemption in a web of tales where characters' lives are intertwined by fate and by their own actions.

From the town's founder, a brave young woman from England who has no fear of blizzards or bears, to the young man who runs away to New York City with only his dog for company, the characters in The Red Garden are extraordinary and vivid: a young wounded Civil War soldier who is saved by a passionate neighbor, a woman who meets a fiercely human historical character, a poet who falls in love with a blind man, a mysterious traveler who comes to town in the year when summer never arrives.

At the center of everyone’s life is a mysterious garden where only red plants can grow, and where the truth can be found by those who dare to look.

Beautifully crafted, shimmering with magic, The Red Garden is as unforgettable as it is moving.

The Probable Future [Audiobook]

The Probable Future [Audiobook]
The Probable Future [Audiobook] by Alice Hoffman, read by Susan Ericksen
2004 | MP@64 kbps + EPUB + MOBI | ~ 12 hrs | 328.98MB

Hoffman has perfected her very own entrancing style of magic realism and mystical romance anchored to the moody, history-laden Massachusetts countryside. In an astonishing run of 16 dazzling novels of family strife, crimes of passion, and the sort of love that induces a person to walk through fire, plunge to the bottom of a cold, dark lake, or promise anything to the gods, Hoffman has gently lifted the veil between the ordinary and the supernatural and made of human desire a force of nature. In this bewitching tale, three living generations of Sparrow women confront their strange and challenging heritage.

It all begins in 1697 when a strange girl who can't feel physical pain walks out of the woods surrounding the tiny settlement of Unity, and unnerves the witch-fearing townsfolk. Each of her descendents, all female and all born in the volatile month of March, possesses a similarly troublesome gift. Elinor can recognize a liar at 100 paces, although her husband still betrays her. Jenny, her daughter, dreams other people's dreams. And her daughter, Stella, can see people's deaths, a burden that at first wreaks havoc when her feckless father is accused of a murder she foresees but later becomes a boon. Hoffman's newest cast of characters is unfailingly magnetic, from her eye-rolling teenagers to her wryly in-love seniors to her suddenly aflame fortysomethings, and the story she tells is as lush as it is suspenseful, as rich in earthy and sensuous detail as it is sweet and hopeful.

The Ice Queen: A Novel [Audiobook]

The Ice Queen: A Novel [Audiobook]
The Ice Queen: A Novel [Audiobook] by Alice Hoffman, read by Nancy Travis
2005 | MP3 VBR + EPUB | ~ 6 hrs | 189.33MB

From the bestselling author of Practical Magic, a miraculous, enthralling tale of a woman who is struck by lightning, and finds her frozen heart is suddenly burning.

Be careful what you wish for. A small town librarian lives a quiet life without much excitement. One day, she mutters an idle wish and, while standing in her house, is struck by lightning. But instead of ending her life, this cataclysmic event sparks it into a new beginning.

She goes in search of Lazarus Jones, a fellow survivor who was struck dead, then simply got up and walked away. Perhaps this stranger who has seen death face to face can teach her to live without fear. When she finds him, he is her opposite, a burning man whose breath can boil water and whose touch scorches. As an obsessive love affair begins between them, both are forced to hide their most dangerous secrets--what turned one to ice and the other to fire.

A magical story of passion, loss, and renewal, The Ice Queen is Alice Hoffman at her electrifying best.

American Icons [3 Vols Set]

American Icons [3 Vols Set]
American Icons: An Encyclopedia of the People, Places, and Things that Have Shaped Our Culture [3 Vols Set] edited by Dennis R Hall, Susan G Hall
2006 | PDF | 20.14MB

What do Madonna, Ray Charles, Mount Rushmore, suburbia, the banjo, and the Ford Mustang have in common? Whether we adore, ignore, or deplore them, they all influence our culture, and color the way America is perceived by the world.

In this A-to-Z collection of essays scholars explore more than one hundred people, places, and phenomena as they seek to discover what it means to be labeled icon. From the Alamo to Muhammad Ali, from John Wayne to the zipper, the American icons covered in this unique three-volume set include subjects from culture, law, art, food, religion, and science. By providing numerous ways for the reader to engage in the process of interpreting these images and artifacts, the work serves as a unique resource for students of American history and culture. Features 100 illustrations.

The Richard Burton Diaries

The Richard Burton Diaries
The Richard Burton Diaries edited by Chris Williams
2012 | EPUB | 2.63MB

Irresistibly magnetic on stage, mesmerizing in movies, seven times an Academy Award nominee, Richard Burton rose from humble beginnings in Wales to become Hollywood's most highly paid actor and one of England's most admired Shakespearean performers. His epic romance with Elizabeth Taylor, his legendary drinking and story-telling, his dazzling purchases (enormous diamonds, a jet, homes on several continents), and his enormous talent kept him constantly in the public eye. Yet the man behind the celebrity façade carried a surprising burden of insecurity and struggled with the peculiar challenges of a life lived largely in the spotlight.

This volume publishes Burton's extensive personal diaries in their entirety for the first time. His writings encompass many years—from 1939, when he was still a teenager, to 1983, the year before his death—and they reveal him in his most private moments, pondering his triumphs and demons, his loves and his heartbreaks. The diary entries appear in their original sequence, with annotations to clarify people, places, books, and events Burton mentions.

From these hand-written pages emerges a multi-dimensional man, no mere flashy celebrity. While Burton touched shoulders with shining lights—among them Olivia de Havilland, John Gielgud, Claire Bloom, Laurence Olivier, John Huston, Dylan Thomas, and Edward Albee—he also played the real-life roles of supportive family man, father, husband, and highly intelligent observer. His diaries offer a rare and fresh perspective on his own life and career, and on the glamorous decades of the mid-twentieth century.

The Most Beautiful Woman in the World

The Most Beautiful Woman in the World
The Most Beautiful Woman in the World: The Obsessions, Passions, and Courage of Elizabeth Taylor by Ellis Amburn
2011 | EPUB | 5.59MB

Test Ellis Amburn's magnificent biography of the Academy Award-winning actress and legendary beauty captures the unparalleled Elizabeth in all her tragedy and splendor—her tumultuous loves, her doomed affections, her shocking excesses, her courage, and her inimitable style. Filled with stunning revelations about the men in her life—Burton, Clift, Hilton, Dean, Fisher—it is a glorious celebration of the turbulent life of a brilliant star that none in Hollywood or heaven could ever outshine.

Salinger

Salinger
Salinger by David Shields, Shane Salerno
2013 | EPUB | 27.42MB

THE BOY WHO BECAME A REBEL. THE REBEL WHO BECAME A SOLDIER. THE SOLDIER WHO BECAME AN ICON. THE ICON WHO DISAPPEARED.

Raised in Park Avenue privilege, J. D. Salinger sought out combat, surviving five bloody battles of World War II, and out of that crucible he created a novel, The Catcher in the Rye, which journeyed deep into his own despair and redefined postwar America.

For more than fifty years, Salinger has been one of the most elusive figures in American history. All of the attempts to uncover the truth about why he disappeared have been undermined by a lack of access and the recycling of inaccurate information. In the course of a nine-year investigation, and especially in the three years since Salinger’s death, David Shields and Shane Salerno have interviewed more than 200 people on five continents (many of whom had previously refused to go on the record) to solve the mystery of what happened to Salinger.

Constructed like a thriller, this oral biography takes you into Salinger’s private world for the first time, through the voices of those closest to him: his World War II brothers-in-arms, his family, his friends, his lovers, his classmates, his editors, his New Yorker colleagues, his spiritual advisors, and people with whom he had relationships that were secret even to his own family. Their intimate recollections are supported by more than 175 photos (many never seen before), diaries, legal records, and private documents that are woven throughout; in addition, appearing here for the first time, are Salinger’s “lost letters”—ranging from the 1940s to 2008, revealing his intimate views on love, literature, fame, religion, war, and death, and providing a raw and revelatory self-portrait.

Salinger published his last story in 1965 but kept writing continuously until his death, locked for years inside a bunker in the woods, compiling manuscripts and filing them in a secret vault. Was he a genius who left the material world to focus on creating immaculate art or a haunted recluse, lost in his private obsessions? Why did this writer, celebrated by the world, stop publishing? Shields and Salerno’s investigation into Salinger’s epic life transports you from the bloody beaches of Normandy, where Salinger landed under fire, carrying the first six chapters of The Catcher in the Rye . . . to the hottest nightclub in the world, the Stork Club, where he romanced the beautiful sixteen-year-old Oona O’Neill until she met Charlie Chaplin . . . from his top-secret counterintelligence duties, which took him to a subcamp of Dachau . . . to a love affair with a likely Gestapo agent whom he married and brought home to his Jewish parents’ Park Avenue apartment and photographs of whom appear here for the first time . . . from the pages of the New Yorker, where he found his voice by transforming the wounds of war into the bow of art . . . to the woods of New Hampshire, where the Vedanta religion took over his life and forced his flesh-and-blood family to compete with his imaginary Glass family.

Deepening our understanding of a major literary and cultural figure, and filled with many fascinating revelations— including the birth defect that was the real reason Salinger was initially turned down for military service; the previously unknown romantic interest who was fourteen when Salinger met her and, he said, inspired the title character of “For Esmé—with Love and Squalor”; the first photographs ever seen of Salinger at war and the last known photos of him alive; never-before-published love letters that Salinger, at fifty-three, wrote to an eighteen-year-old Joyce Maynard; and, finally, what millions have been waiting decades for: the contents of his legendary vault—Salinger is a monumental book about the cost of war and the cost of art.

Young Che: Memories of Che Guevara by His Father

Young Che: Memories of Che Guevara by His Father
Young Che: Memories of Che Guevara by His Father by Ernesto Guevara Lynch
2008 | EPUB | 4.81MB

“I had prepared a life plan that included ten years of wandering, later years studying medicine. . . . All that's in the past, the only thing that's clear is that the ten years of wandering might grow longer . . . but it will now be of an entirely different type from the one I dreamed of, and when I arrive in a new country it will not be to go to museums and look at ruins, because that still interests me, but also to join the struggle of the people.” – Che Guevara, in a letter to his mother, 1956

Assembled from two separate books written by Che's father, this is a vivid and intimate account of the formative years of an icon. Ernesto Guevara Lynch describes the people and personal events that shaped the development of his son's revolutionary worldview, from his childhood in a bourgeois Argentinian home to the moment he joined Castro to train for the invasion of Cuba in 1956. It also includes, available for the first time in the United States, Che's diary of his trip around Northern Argentina in 1950. Young Che is an indispensible guide to understanding one of the twentieth century's most famous and enduring revolutionary figures.

Roses from the Earth: The Biography of Anne Frank

Roses from the Earth: The Biography of Anne Frank
Roses from the Earth: The Biography of Anne Frank by Carol Ann Lee
2000 | EPUB | 3.02MB

Anne Frank's diary is the most widely-read book after the Bible, yet never before has a biography of her been published. Carol Anne Lee has been allowed access to previously unpublished documents and gives a definitive account of Anne Frank's short life before, during and after the diary.

Lindbergh [Audiobook]

Lindbergh [Audiobook]
Lindbergh [Audiobook] by A Scott Berg, read by Eric Stoltz
1998 | MP3@64 kbps | ~ 6 hrs | 165.48MB

Bestselling author and National Book Awardwinner A. Scott Berg is the first and only writer to be given unrestricted access to the massive Lindbergh archives--more than two thousand boxes of personal papers, including reams of unpublished letters and diaries--and to be allowed freely to interview Lindbergh's friends, colleagues, and family members, including his children and his widow, Anne Morrow Lindbergh.

The result is a brilliant biography that clarifies a life long blurred by myth and half-truth. From the moment he landed in Paris on May 21, 1927, Lindbergh found himself thrust on an odyssey for which he was ill-prepared--becoming the first modern media superstar, deified and demonized many times over in a single lifetime. Berg casts dramatic new light on the lonely, sometimes twisted childhood that formed the aviator's character; the astonishing transatlantic flight and thrilling, then overwhelming aftermath; the controversies surrounding the trial of his son's kidnapper, Lindbergh's fascination with Hitler's Germany and his leadership of America First; his remarkable unsung work in the fields of medical research, rocketry, anthropology, and conservation; and, at the heart of it all, his fascinating, complex marriage to Anne Morrow Lindbergh, a relationship filled with sudden joy and bitter darkness.

In all, it is a most compelling story of a most significant life--the most private of public figures finally revealed with a sweep and detail never before possible. In the skilled hands of A. Scott Berg, this is Lindbergh the hero--and Lindbergh the man.

Atlantic Fever

Atlantic Fever
Atlantic Fever: Lindbergh, His Competitors, and the Race to Cross the Atlantic by Joe Jackson
2012 | EPUB | 601.09KB

For five weeks—from April 14 to May 21, 1927—the world held its breath while fourteen aviators took to the air to capture the $25,000 prize that Raymond Orteig offered to the first man to cross the Atlantic Ocean without stopping.

Joe Jackson’s Atlantic Fever is about this race, a milestone in American history whose story has never been fully told. Delving into the lives of the big-name competitors—the polar explorer Richard Byrd, the French war hero René Fonck, the millionaire Charles Levine, and the race’s eventual winner, the enigmatic Charles Lindbergh—as well as those whose names have been forgotten by history (such as Bernt Balchen, Stanton Wooster, and Clarence Chamberlin), Jackson brings a completely fresh and original perspective to the race to conquer the Atlantic.

Atlantic Fever opens for us one of those magical windows onto a moment when the nexus of technology, innovation, character, and spirit led so many contenders from different parts of the world to be on the cusp of the exact same achievement at the exact same time.

Devil in the Grove [Audiobook]

Devil in the Grove [Audiobook]
Devil in the Grove: Thurgood Marshall, the Groveland Boys, and the Dawn of a New America [Audiobook] by Gilbert King, read by Peter Francis James
2013 | MP3@64 kbps + EPUB | 17 hrs 57 mins | 491.41MB

Devil in the Grove is the winner of the 2013 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction.

Arguably the most important American lawyer of the twentieth century, Thurgood Marshall was on the verge of bringing the landmark suit Brown v. Board of Education before the U.S. Supreme Court when he became embroiled in an explosive and deadly case that threatened to change the course of the civil rights movement and cost him his life.

In 1949, Florida’s orange industry was booming, and citrus barons got rich on the backs of cheap Jim Crow labor. To maintain order and profits, they turned to Willis V. McCall, a violent sheriff who ruled Lake County with murderous resolve. When a white seventeen-year-old Groveland girl cried rape, McCall was fast on the trail of four young blacks who dared to envision a future for themselves beyond the citrus groves. By day’s end, the Ku Klux Klan had rolled into town, burning the homes of blacks to the ground and chasing hundreds into the swamps, hell-bent on lynching the young men who came to be known as “the Groveland Boys.”

And so began the chain of events that would bring Thurgood Marshall, the man known as “Mr. Civil Rights,” into the deadly fray. Associates thought it was suicidal for him to wade into the “Florida Terror” at a time when he was irreplaceable to the burgeoning civil rights movement, but the lawyer would not shrink from the fight—not after the Klan had murdered one of Marshall’s NAACP associates involved with the case and Marshall had endured continual threats that he would be next.

Drawing on a wealth of never-before-published material, including the FBI’s unredacted Groveland case files, as well as unprecedented access to the NAACP’s Legal Defense Fund files, King shines new light on this remarkable civil rights crusader, setting his rich and driving narrative against the heroic backdrop of a case that U.S. Supreme Court justice Robert Jackson decried as “one of the best examples of one of the worst menaces to American justice.”

The Mammoth Book of British Kings and Queens

The Mammoth Book of British Kings and Queens
The Mammoth Book of British Kings and Queens by Mike Ashley
1999 | EPUB | 14.35MB

A record of Britain's kings and queens over 2000 years of history. It includes more than 1000 monarchs who have at some time ruled all or part of Britain. This includes the host of tribal and Saxon rulers prior to 1066 as well as famous monarchs such as Richard III, Elizabeth I and Charles II and all the rulers of Scotland and Wales.

The book gives full details of the lives of the rulers as well as their wives, consorts, pretenders, usurpers and regents and is a geographical guide to where all Britain's monarchs lived, ruled and died including their palaces, estates and resting places.

All the Queen's Men: The World of Elizabeth I

All the Queen's Men: The World of Elizabeth I
All the Queen's Men: The World of Elizabeth I by Peter Brimacombe
2003 | EPUB | 550.57KB

Elizabeth I was the last English monarch truly to rule the nation; she inherited a weak and divided kingdom yet relentlessly fashioned it into a major world power, and decisively defeated the mightiest invasion fleet ever to approach our shores. Her relationships with the key men in the kingdom were vital to the success of her reign. Her greatest attributes were a shrewd judgement of human nature coupled with the unerring ability to choose and motivate men.

During a long and glorious reign, she surrounded herself with the ablest, most energetic and fearless minds in the kingdom. Her retinue was entirely male but the only man she did not choose was a husband, although there was certainly no shortage of suitors. Elizabeth was devoutly religious but embraced the new learning with calculated discrimination. She inspired magnificent architecture, whilst her sea captains sailed great oceans to discover new shores and founded a mighty overseas empire. Centre stage in these heady days of new ideas and new horizons was the royal court, a colourful kaleidoscope of glittering courtiers and important foreign dignitaries, all trying to impress, all jostling for her favours - all the queen's men.

Anne Neville: Queen to Richard III

Anne Neville: Queen to Richard III
Anne Neville: Queen to Richard III by Michael Hicks
2007 | EPUB | 356.91KB

Anne Neville was queen to England's most notorious king, Richard III. She was immortalised by Shakespeare for the remarkable nature of her marriage, a union which brought together a sorrowing widow with her husband's murderer. Anne's misfortune did not end there. In addition to killing her first husband, Richard also helped kill her father, father-in-law and brother-in-law, imprisoned her mother, and was suspected of poisoning Anne herself.

Dying before the age of thirty, Anne Neville packed into her short life incident enough for many adventurous careers, but was always, apparently,the passive instrument of others' evil intentions. This fascinating new biography seeks to tell the story of Anne's life in her own right, and uncovers the real wife of Richard III by charting the remarkable twists and turns of her fraught and ultimately tragic life.

Love, Fiercely: A Gilded Age Romance

Love, Fiercely: A Gilded Age Romance
Love, Fiercely: A Gilded Age Romance by Jean Zimmerman
2012 | EPUB | 11.45MB

The New York love story of a beautiful heiress and a wealthy young architect, captured in a famous John Singer Sargent painting.

In Love, Fiercely Jean Zimmerman re-creates the glittering world of Edith Minturn and Isaac Newton Phelps Stokes. Contemporaries of the Astors and Vanderbilts, they grew up together along the shores of bucolic Staten Island, linked by privilege—her grandparents built the world’s fastest clipper ship, his family owned most of Murray Hill. Theirs was a world filled with mansions, balls, summer homes, and extended European vacations.

Newton became a passionate preserver of New York history and published the finest collection of Manhattan maps and views in a six-volume series. Edith became the face of the age when Daniel Chester French sculpted her for Chicago’s Columbian Exposition, a colossus intended to match the Statue of Liberty’s grandeur. Together Edith and Newton battled on behalf of New York’s poor and powerless as reformers who never themselves wanted for anything. Through it all, they sustained a strong-rooted marriage.

A History of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook]

A History of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook]
A History of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook] by Martin Gilbert, read by John Curless
2011 | M4A | 29 hrs 53 mins | 1.09GB

Martin Gilbert, author of the multivolume biography of Winston Churchill and other brilliant works of history, chronicles world events year by year, from the dawn of aviation to the flourishing technology age, taking us through World War I to the inauguration of Franklin Roosevelt as president of the United States and Hider as chancellor of Germany. He continues on to document wars in South Africa, China, Ethiopia, Spain, Korea, Vietnam, and Bosnia, as well as apartheid, the arms race, the moon landing, and the beginnings of the computer age, while interspersing the influence of art, literature, music, and religion throughout this vivid work.

A rich, textured look at war, celebration, suffering, life, death, and renewal in the century gone by, this volume is nothing less than extraordinary.

The Partnership: Five Cold Warriors and Their Quest to Ban the Bomb

The Partnership: Five Cold Warriors and Their Quest to Ban the Bomb
The Partnership: Five Cold Warriors and Their Quest to Ban the Bomb by Philip Taubman
2013 | EPUB | 1.36MB

Offering a clear analysis of the danger of nuclear terrorism and how it can be prevented, The Partnership sheds light on one of the most divisive security issues facing Washington today.

Award-winning New York Times journalist Philip Taubman illuminates our vulnerability in the face of this pressing terrorist threat—and the unlikely efforts of five key Cold War players to eliminate the nuclear arsenal they helped create. Bob Woodward calls The Partnership a “brilliant, penetrating study of nuclear threats, present and past,” and David Kennedy writes that it is “indispensable reading for all who would understand the desperate urgency of containing the menace of nuclear proliferation.”

Gideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad [Audiobook]

Gideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad [Audiobook]
Gideon's Spies: The Secret History of the Mossad [Audiobook] by Gordon Thomas, read by Theodore Bikel
1998 | MP3@128 kbps + EPUB + MOBI | 6 hrs 02 mins | 331.15MB

Created in 1951 to ensure the future of an embattled Israel, the Mossad has been responsible for the most audacious and thrilling feats of espionage, counterterrorism, and assassination ever ventured. For the first time ever, resulting from closed-door interviews between the author and Mossad agents, informants, and spymasters, as well as classified documents and top-secret sources, the truth about the Mossad is about to be revealed.

From the Mossad agent in the Clinton White House who enabled Israel to call the shots in the ongoing Middle East peace process to the nuclear secrets smuggled out of the U.S. and used to jump-start Israel's own atomic weapons program, Gideon's Spies reveals the Mossad as it truly is: brilliant, ruthless, flawed, but ultimately awesome.

Farewell: The Greatest Spy Story of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook]

Farewell: The Greatest Spy Story of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook]
Farewell: The Greatest Spy Story of the Twentieth Century [Audiobook] by Sergei Kostin, Eric Raynaud, read by Arthur Morey
2012 | M4A | 15 hrs 13 mins | 642.25MB

1981. Ronald Reagan and François Mitterrand are sworn in as presidents of the Unites States and France, respectively. The tension due to Mitterrand’s French Communist support, however, is immediately defused when he gives Reagan the Farewell Dossier, a file he would later call “one of the greatest spy cases of the twentieth century.”

Vladimir Ippolitovitch Vetrov, a promising technical student, joins the KGB to work as a spy. Following a couple of murky incidents, however, Vetrov is removed from the field and placed at a desk as an analyst. Soon, burdened by a troubled marriage and frustrated at a flailing career, Vetrov turns to alcohol. Desperate and needing redemption, he offers his services to the DST. Thus Agent Farewell is born. He uses his post within the KGB to steal and photocopy files of the USSR’s plans for the West—all under Brezhnev’s nose.

Probing further into Vetrov’s psychological profile than ever before, Kostin and Raynaud provide groundbreaking insight into the man whose life helped hasten the fall of the Soviet Regime.

The Diary of a Young Girl: The Definitive Edition [Audiobook]

The Diary of a Young Girl: The Definitive Edition [Audiobook]
The Diary of a Young Girl: The Definitive Edition [Audiobook] by Anne Frank, read by Selma Blair
2010 | MP3 VBR V2 + PDF | 9 hrs 55 mins | 562.22MB

Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl is among the most enduring documents of the twentieth century. Since its publication in 1947, it has been read by tens of millions of people all over the world. It remains a beloved and deeply admired testament to the indestructible nature of the human spirit. Restored in this Definitive Edition are diary entries that were omitted from the original edition. These passages, which constitute 30 percent more material, reinforce the fact that Anne was first and foremost a teenage girl, not a remote and flawless symbol.

She fretted about and tried to cope with her own sexuality. Like many young girls, she often found herself in disagreements with her mother. And like any teenager, she veered between the carefree nature of a child and the full-fledged sorrow of an adult. Anne emerges more human, more vulnerable and more vital than ever.

Gulag: A History

Gulag: A History
Gulag: A History by Anne Applebaum
2004 | EPUB | 5.56MB

Nearly 30 million prisoners passed through the Soviet Union's labor camps in their more than 60 years of operation. This remarkable volume, the first fully documented history of the gulag, describes how, largely under Stalin's watch, a regulated, centralized system of prison labor-unprecedented in scope-gradually arose out of the chaos of the Russian Revolution. Fueled by waves of capricious arrests, this prison labor came to underpin the Soviet economy.

Applebaum, a former Warsaw correspondent for the Economist and a regular contributor to the Wall Street Journal and the Washington Post, draws on newly accessible Soviet archives as well as scores of camp memoirs and interviews with survivors to trace the gulag's origins and expansion. By the gulag's peak years in the early 1950s, there were camps in every part of the country, and slave labor was used not only for mining and heavy industries but for producing every kind of consumer product (chairs, lamps, toys, those ubiquitous fur hats) and some of the country's most important science and engineering (Sergei Korolev, the architect of the Soviet space program, began his work in a special prison laboratory). Applebaum details camp life, including strategies for survival; the experiences of women and children in the camps; sexual relationships and marriages between prisoners; and rebellions, strikes and escapes. There is almost too much dark irony to bear in this tragic, gripping account.

Applebaum's lucid prose and painstaking consideration of the competing theories about aspects of camp life and policy are always compelling. She includes an appendix in which she discusses the various ways of calculating how many died in the camps, and throughout the book she thoughtfully reflects on why the gulag does not loom as large in the Western imagination as, for instance, the Holocaust.

Do the Birds Still Sing in Hell?

Do the Birds Still Sing in Hell?
Do the Birds Still Sing in Hell by Horace Greasley
2013 | EPUB | 2.81MB

Horace "Jim" Greasley was 20 years old in the spring of 1939 when Adolf Hitler invaded Czechoslovakia and Poland. There had been whispers and murmurs of discontent from certain quarters and the British government began to prepare for the inevitable war. After seven weeks training with the 2nd/5th Battalion Leicester, he found himself facing the might of the German army in a muddy field in Northern France, with just 30 rounds of ammunition in his weapon pouch. Horace's war didn't last long. He was taken prisoner on May 25th, 1940 and forced to endure a 10 week march across France and Belgium en route to Holland.

Horace survived, barely, but many of his comrades were not so fortunate. Falling by the side of the road through exhaustion and malnourishment meant a bullet through the back of the head and the corpse left to rot. After a three day train journey without food and water, Horace found himself incarcerated in a prison camp in Poland. It was there he embarked on an incredible love affair with a German girl interpreting for his captors. He experienced the sweet taste of freedom each time he escaped to see her, yet incredibly he made his way back into the camp each time—sometimes two or three times a week. He broke out of the camp more than 200 times, often bringing food back to his fellow prisoners to supplement their meager rations, and toward the end of the war even managed to bring radio parts back in, allowing the BBC news to be delivered daily to more than 3,000 prisoners.

Brave Battalion: The Remarkable Saga of the 16th Battalion

Brave Battalion: The Remarkable Saga of the 16th Battalion
Brave Battalion: The Remarkable Saga of the 16th Battalion (Canadian Scottish) in the First World War by Mark Zuehlke
2008 | EPUB | 4.02MB

The company was completely bunched in front of the wire. Some men threw bombs toward the German trench while others tried to beat down the wooden stakes supporting the wire with their rifle buts and then trample it into the mud. The German grenades generally fell short as they were throwing uphill, but their rifle fire was "deadly accurate." Casualties mounted. Unless something were to be done quickly, Mackie realized that No. 4 Company would be wiped out.

Suddenly Richardson turned to the sergeant. "Will I gie them wund?" he asked calmly. "Aye mon, gie 'em wind, " Mackie barked back. Coolly, the young smooth-faced solder marched back and forth in front of the wire, playing the pipes while a storm of fire swirled past him on either side. "The effect was instantaneous," reads his Victoria Cross commendation. "Inspired by his splendid example, the company rushed the wire with such fury and determination that the obstacle was overcome and the positions captured."

Terrible Victory: First Canadian Army and the Scheldt Estuary Campaign

Terrible Victory: First Canadian Army and the Scheldt Estuary Campaign
Terrible Victory: First Canadian Army and the Scheldt Estuary Campaign: September 13 - November 6, 1944 by Mark Zuehlke
2007 | EPUB | 3.19MB

Mark Zuehlke is an expert at narrating the history of life on the battlefield for the Canadian army during World War II. In Terrible Victory, he provides a soldiers-eye-view account of Canada's bloody liberation of western Holland. Readers are there as soldiers fight in the muddy quagmire, enduring a battle that lasted three weeks and in which 6,000 soldiers perished. Terrible Victory is a powerful story of courage, survival, and skill.

The Gothic Line: Canada's Month of Hell in World War II Italy

The Gothic Line: Canada's Month of Hell in World War II Italy
The Gothic Line: Canada's Month of Hell in World War II Italy by Mark Zuehlke
2003 | EPUB | 4.9MB

Like an armor-toothed belt across Italy’s upper thigh, the Gothic Line was the most fortified and fiercely defended position the German army had yet thrown in the path of the Allied forces. On August 25, 1944, it fell to I Canadian Corps to spearhead the famed Eighth Army’s major offensive, intended to rip through it.

The 1st Infantry and 5th Armored Divisions advanced into a killing ground covered by thousands of machine-gun, antitank gun positions, and pillboxes expertly sited behind minefields and dense thickets of barbed wire. Never had the Germans in Italy brought so much artillery to bear or deployed such a great number of tanks.

For 28 days, the battle raged as the Allied troops slugged an ever deeper hole into the German defences. The Metauro River, the Foglia River, Point 204, Tomba Di Pesaro, Coriano Ridge, San Martino, and San Fortunato became place names seared into the memories of those who fought there.

They fought in a dust-choked land under a searing sun which by battle's end was reduced to a guagmire by rain. But they prevailed and on September 22 won the ground overlooking the Po River Valley, opening the way for the next phase of the Allied advance.

The Liri Valley

The Liri Valley
The Liri Valley: Canada's World War II Breakthrough to Rome by Mark Zuehlke
2004 | EPUB | 4.78MB

The second instalment in military historian Mark Zuehlke’s compelling World War II tales of Canadians overcoming insurmountable odds in Italy.

For the allied armies fighting their way up the Italian boot in early 1944, Rome was the prize that could only be won through one of the greatest offensives of the war. Following upon his book about the battle of Ortona, Mark Zuehlke returns to the Mediterranean theatre of World War II with this gripping tribute to the valiant Canadians who opened the way for the Allies to take Rome.

The Liri Valley is testament to the bravery of these Canadians, like the badly wounded Captain Pierre Potvin, who survived more than thirty hours alone in the hell of no man’s land. This book, like the battle it records, will live long in readers’ memories.

Cells to Civilizations: The Principles of Change That Shape Life

Cells to Civilizations: The Principles of Change That Shape Life
Cells to Civilizations: The Principles of Change That Shape Life by Enrico Coen
2012 | EPUB | 4.91MB

Cells to Civilizations is the first unified account of how life transforms itself--from the production of bacteria to the emergence of complex civilizations. What are the connections between evolving microbes, an egg that develops into an infant, and a child who learns to walk and talk? Award-winning scientist Enrico Coen synthesizes the growth of living systems and creative processes, and he reveals that the four great life transformations--evolution, development, learning, and human culture--while typically understood separately, actually all revolve around shared core principles and manifest the same fundamental recipe. Coen blends provocative discussion, the latest scientific research, and colorful examples to demonstrate the links between these critical stages in the history of life.

Coen tells a story rich with genes, embryos, neurons, and fascinating discoveries. He examines the development of the zebra, the adaptations of seaweed, the cave paintings of Lascaux, and the formulations of Alan Turing. He explores how dogs make predictions, how weeds tell the time of day, and how our brains distinguish a Modigliani from a Rembrandt. Locating commonalities in important findings, Coen gives readers a deeper understanding of key transformations and provides a bold portrait for how science both frames and is framed by human culture.

A compelling investigation into the relationships between our biological past and cultural progress, Cells to Civilizations presents a remarkable story of living change.

Radical Abundance

Radical Abundance
Radical Abundance: How a Revolution in Nanotechnology Will Change Civilization by K Eric Drexler
2013 | EPUB | 3.5MB

K. Eric Drexler is the founding father of nanotechnology—the science of engineering on a molecular level. In Radical Abundance, he shows how rapid scientific progress is about to change our world. Thanks to atomically precise manufacturing, we will soon have the power to produce radically more of what people want, and at a lower cost. The result will shake the very foundations of our economy and environment.

Already, scientists have constructed prototypes for circuit boards built of millions of precisely arranged atoms. The advent of this kind of atomic precision promises to change the way we make things—cleanly, inexpensively, and on a global scale. It allows us to imagine a world where solar arrays cost no more than cardboard and aluminum foil, and laptops cost about the same.

A provocative tour of cutting edge science and its implications by the field’s founder and master, Radical Abundance offers a mind-expanding vision of a world hurtling toward an unexpected future.

Odd Couples [Audiobook]

Odd Couples [Audiobook]
Odd Couples: Extraordinary Differences between the Sexes in the Animal Kingdom [Audiobook] by Daphne J Fairbairn, read by Kristin Kalbli
2013 | MP3 VBR + EPUB | 7 hrs 03 mins | 191.93MB

While we joke that men are from Mars and women are from Venus, our gender differences can't compare to those of other animals. For instance: the male garden spider spontaneously dies after mating with a female more than fifty times his size. Female cichlids must guard their eggs and larvae--even from the hungry appetites of their own partners. And male blanket octopuses employ a copulatory arm longer than their own bodies to mate with females that outweigh them by four orders of magnitude. Why do these gender gulfs exist?

Introducing readers to important discoveries in animal behavior and evolution, Odd Couples explores some of the most extraordinary sexual differences in the animal world. From the fields of Spain to the deep oceans, evolutionary biologist Daphne Fairbairn uncovers the unique and bizarre characteristics--in size, behavior, ecology, and life history--that exist in these remarkable species and the special strategies they use to maximize reproductive success.

Fairbairn describes how male great bustards aggressively compete to display their gorgeous plumage and large physiques to watching, choosey females. She investigates why female elephant seals voluntarily live in harems where they are harassed constantly by eager males. And she reveals why dwarf male giant seadevils parasitically fuse to their giant female partners for life. Fairbairn also considers humans and explains that although we are keenly aware of our own sexual differences, they are unexceptional within the vast animal world. Looking at some of the most amazing creatures on the planet, Odd Couples sheds astonishing light on what it means to be male or female in the animal kingdom.

The UltraMind Solution: Fix Your Broken Brain

The UltraMind Solution: Fix Your Broken Brain
The UltraMind Solution: Fix Your Broken Brain by Healing Your Body First - The Simple Way to Defeat Depression, Overcome Anxiety, and Sharpen Your Mind by Mark Hyman
2008 | EPUB | 0.95MB

A hidden epidemic races around the globe -- we can't see it or touch it, which makes it so dangerous.
The invisible epidemic has led to the suffering of millions who spend billions on drugs, only to find they don't work.
This is an epidemic of broken brains.

"Broken brains" go by many names -- depression, anxiety, memory loss, brain fog, attention deficit disorder, autism, and dementia, to name a few -- and show up in radically different ways from person to person, making each seem like a separate problem.

But the truth is that these "diagnoses" are all the result of a few basic problems with our biology. Pinpoint these biological problems, fix them, and let your body's natural healing intelligence take over to repair your brain. Now you can experience an UltraMind -- one that is highly focused and able to pay attention at will, with a strong, reliable memory and a mood that is calm, confident, in control, and in good spirits.

We have all heard of the mind-body connection or how our thoughts affect the health of our body. But the reverse is far more powerful: what you do to your body, your basic biology, has a profound effect on your brain.

Have you ever experienced instant clarity after exercise? Alertness after drinking coffee? A mental crash after popping candy? Does your brain inexplicably slow down during stress, while multitasking, or when meeting a deadline? Each is an example of how what we do to our bodies -- whether through nutrition, sleep, exercise, or stress -- has a dramatic effect on our brains.

Conventional treatments don't help, or provide only slight benefit, because they just manage symptoms rather than deal with -- and heal -- the underlying problem. And just as brain problems all stem from the same root causes, they all have the same solution -- The UltraMind Solution.

Our ancient genes interact with our environment to create systemic imbalances that affect our brains. Correct those imbalances -- most caused by nutritional deficiencies, allergens, infections, toxins, and stress -- and you can achieve optimum mental health without drugs or psychotherapy.

The UltraMind Solution is the future of medicine, the culmination of the last twenty years of research on what makes the brain happy, focused, and calm; research that has uncovered a few simple factors that explain why things go wrong and how to fix them.

Don't wait for this revolution in medicine to trickle into your doctor's office: it usually takes research twenty years to move from the lab to the patient. The answers are here, right now, in The UltraMind Solution.

Financial Shenanigans [Third Edition]

Financial Shenanigans [Third Edition]
Financial Shenanigans: How to Detect Accounting Gimmicks & Fraud in Financial Reports [Third Edition]
2010 | EPUB | 4.06MB

With major financial scandals popping up in greater numbers—and with more inevitably on the way—it has never been more important for you to understand what dishonest companies do to trick investors. Since the early 1990s, Financial Shenanigans has been helping investors unearth deceptive financial reporting at the most critical time— before they suffer major losses.

Now, the third edition broadens its focus to include the newest, most sophisticated techniques companies use to mislead investors.

Referred to as the “Sherlock Holmes of Accounting” by BusinessWeek, Howard Schilit and renowned forensic accounting expert Jeremy Perler take you deeper into the corporate bag of tricks, exposing new levels of accounting gimmickry and arming you with the investigative tools you need to detect:

  • Earnings Manipulation Shenanigans: Learn the latest tricks companies use to exaggerate revenue and earnings.
  • Cash Flow Shenanigans: Discover new techniques devised by management that allow it to manipulate cash flow as easily as earnings.
  • Key Metrics Shenanigans: See how companies use misleading “key”metrics to fool investors about their financial performance.

Financial Shenanigans brings you completely up to date on accounting chicanery in the global markets, shining a light on the most shocking frauds and financial reporting miscreants. This insightful, detailed guide written by recognized experts on the subject provides the knowledge and tools you need to spot even the most subtle signs of financial shenanigans.

Blind Spot: Why We Fail to See the Solution Right in Front of Us

Blind Spot: Why We Fail to See the Solution Right in Front of Us
Blind Spot: Why We Fail to See the Solution Right in Front of Us by Gordon Rugg
2013 | EPUB | 7.52MB

The Voynich Manuscript has been considered to be the world's most mysterious book. Filled with strange illustrations and an unknown language, it challenged the world's top code-crackers for nearly a century.

But in just four-and-a-half months, Dr. Gordon Rugg, a renowned researcher, found evidence (which had been there all along) that the book could be a giant, glittering hoax.

In Blind Spot: Why We Fail to See the Solution Right in Front of Us, Dr. Rugg shares his story and shows how his toolkit of problem-solving techniques—such as his Verifier Method—can save the day, particularly in those times when the experts on your team have all the data in front of them but are still unaccountably at an impasse.

In the tradition of Malcolm Gladwell and Dan Ariely, Dr. Rugg, a rising star in computer science, challenges us to re-examine the way we think, and provides new tools to solve problems and crack codes in our own lives.

Leverage Your Laziness: How to Do What You Love, All the Time

Leverage Your Laziness: How to Do What You Love, All the Time
Leverage Your Laziness: How to Do What You Love, All the Time by Steve Bookbinder, Jeff Goldberg
2013 | EPUB | 1.97MB

Because 4 hours is just too much work!

Jeff Goldberg and Steve Bookbinder combine their wit, intellect, and common sense in this entertaining, data packed instructional manual. They draw on their personal insight, diversified experiences, and passion for life coaching in the writing and production of Leverage Your Laziness!

In this collaboration they introduce an approach designed to use leverage and laziness as a strategy for attaining effective performance with the least work and the added bonus of sensing the enjoyment of accomplishment. Steve helps the reader discover how to recognize and utilize their strongest strengths in their personal strategy for success. Jeff introduces keys to focus on those things you enjoy most in your work to increase your personal productivity with the least effort.

Sixteen principles, dozens of motivational quotes from dozens of recognized leaders, and the opportunity for individual readers to get specific in applying these principles personally make up the format of this humorous, practical, and powerful guidebook. Concise, and compact, yet comprehensive Leverage Your Laziness! is an important tool for the established entrepreneur, for successful leaders, for life coaches, and for those who "wanna be" rich and famous.

Critical Thinking [10th Edition]

Critical Thinking [10th Edition]
Critical Thinking [10th Edition] by Richard Parker, Brooke Noel Moore
2011 | PDF | 12.43MB

Imagine a class where students are actively and personally engaged in thinking critically while also discovering how to apply those thinking skills in everyday life. Now imagine those same students confidently participating in class, working efficiently through the exercises outside class, and performing better in the course.

With Connect Critical Thinking, students can achieve this success. Connect Critical Thinking is a first: a learning program with pedagogical tools that are anchored in research on critical thinking.

Along with Moore & Parker’s engaging writing style and the wealth of topical exercises and examples that are relevant to students’ lives, Connect Critical Thinking helps ensure that students can come to class confident and prepared. What other course provides students with skills they can apply so broadly to success in school and success in life?

ZIP! Tips: The Fastest Way to Get More Done

ZIP! Tips: The Fastest Way to Get More Done
ZIP Tips: The Fastest Way to Get More Done by Mike Song
2013 | EPUB | 2.75MB

In today's busy world of schedules and information overload, the Forces of Chaos are at an all-time high. Professionals everywhere desperately want to zip through tough tasks, jammed inboxes, and never-ending interruptions - but despite their best efforts they increasingly fall behind and often fail big time. After running in place at work for years like rodents on a wheel, some professionals even tragically morph into hamsters!

This is the story of Z - a productivity super hero who helps business hamsters regain their humanity. Using his simple, superhuman-strength, not-so-secret weapon, ZIP! - Tips, Z helps his friend Harold morph back into a human being. A small number of high-impact tech tips, ZIP! is, as Z describes it, lightning in a bottle - a hurricane in a can. ZIP! is rocket fuel for careers and a spa day for the stressed-out soul. And best of all, ZIP! Tips get the hamster in all of us off the wheel once and for all.

Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton

Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton
Lessons from the Hanoi Hilton: Six Characteristics of High-Performance Teams by Peter Fretwell
2013 | EPUB | 1.97MB

Why were the American POWs imprisoned at the “Hanoi Hilton” so resilient in captivity and so successful in their subsequent careers? This book presents six principles practiced within the POW organizational culture that can be used to develop high-performance teams everywhere. The authors offer examples from both the POWs’ time in captivity and their later professional lives that identify, in real-life situations, the characteristics necessary for sustainable, high-performance teamwork. The book takes readers inside the mind of James Stockdale, a fighter pilot with a degree in philosophy, who was the senior ranking officer at the Hanoi prison. The theories Stockdale practiced become readily understandable in this book. Drawing parallels between Stockdale’s guiding philosophies from the Stoic Epictetus and the principles of modern sports psychology, Peter Fretwell and Taylor Baldwin Kiland show readers how to apply these principles to their own organizations and create a culture with staying power.

Originally intending their book to focus on Stockdale’s leadership style, the authors found that his approach toward completing a mission was to assure that it could be accomplished without him. Stockdale, they explain, had created a mission-centric organization, not a leader-centric organization. He had understood that a truly sustainable culture must not be dependent on a single individual.

At one level, this book is a business school case study. It is also an examination of how leadership and organizational principles employed in the crucible of a Hanoi prison align with today’s sports psychology and modern psychological theories and therapies, as well as the training principles used by Olympic athletes and Navy SEALs. Any group willing to apply these principles can move their mission forward and create a culture with staying power—one that outlives individual members.

The Physics of Wall Street

The Physics of Wall Street
The Physics of Wall Street: A Brief History of Predicting the Unpredictable [Audiobook] by James Owen Weatherall, read by Kaleo Griffith
2013 | M4B + EPUB | 9 hrs 42 mins | 170.21MB

The crisis was partly a failure of mathematical modeling. But even more, it was a failure of some very sophisticated financial institutions to think like physicists. Models-whether in science or finance-have limitations; they break down under certain conditions. And in 2008, sophisticated models fell into the hands of people who didn't understand their purpose, and didn't care. It was a catastrophic misuse of science.

The solution, however, is not to give up on models; it's to make them better. Weatherall reveals the people and ideas on the cusp of a new era in finance. We see a geophysicist use a model designed for earthquakes to predict a massive stock market crash. We discover a physicist-run hedge fund that earned 2,478.6% over the course of the 1990s. And we see how an obscure idea from quantum theory might soon be used to create a far more accurate Consumer Price Index.

Both persuasive and accessible, The Physics of Wall Street is riveting history that will change how we think about our economic future.