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Endurance: Shackleton's Incredible Voyage
The harrowing tale of British explorer Ernest Shackleton's 1914 attempt to reach the South Pole, one of the greatest adventure stories of the modern age.In August 1914, polar explorer Ernest Shackleton boarded the Endurance and set sail for Antarctica, where he planned to cross the last uncharted continent on foot. In January 1915, after battling its way through a thousand miles of pack ice and only a day's sail short of its destination, the Endurance became locked in an island of ice. Thus began the legendary ordeal of Shackleton and his crew of twenty-seven men.For ten months the ice-moored Endurance drifted northwest before it was finally crushed between two ice floes. With no options left, Shackleton and a skeleton crew attempted a near-impossible journey over 850 miles of the South Atlantic's heaviest seas to the closest outpost of civilization. Their survival, and the survival of the men they left behind, depended on their small lifeboat successfully finding the island of South Georgia--a tiny dot of land in a vast and hostile ocean.In Endurance, the definitive account of Ernest Shackleton's fateful trip, Alfred Lansing brilliantly narrates the harrowing and miraculous voyage that has defined heroism for the modern age.
Service: A Navy Seal at War
From the mountains of Afghanistan to urban sniper hides in Iraq, Navy SEAL Marcus Luttrell has seen the worst of war at the sharp end of battle. In 2006, the "lone survivor" of Operation Redwing returned to combat as a member of SEAL Team 5 to help take on the most dangerous city in the world: Ramadi, the capital of war-torn Anbar Province. It was there that he took part in what has been called the greatest victory in the history of the U.S. Special Operations forces. Luttrell's eye-opening narrative also offers powerful new details about his time in Afghanistan and his miraculous rescue. After returning from that star-crossed mission with shattered bones and a broken heart, he thought of the men who had given their lives to save him - and how he would have readily done the same for them. He wondered why he and others, from America's founding to today, had been willing to sacrifice everything - including themselves - for the sake of family, nation, and freedom. A thrilling war story, Service is also a profoundly moving tribute to the warrior brotherhood and to the belief that nobody goes it alone.
Family of Shadows
Hovannisian, Garin K.
As a world war rages through Europe in 1915, Ottoman authorities commence the systematic slaughter of 1.5 million Armenians - the first genocide of modern history. Alone, a teenage boy named Kaspar Hovannisian escapes the ruins of his ancestral homeland to pursue the American dream. In the San Joaquin Valley of California, he cultivates a small farm and invests in real estate. But memories of Armenia burn strong - a complicated legacy of love, anguish, and faith in a national rebirth. Kaspar's son, Richard, leaves the family farm and helps pioneer the field of Armenian studies in the United States, becoming a worldwide authority on genocide. Richard's son, Raffi, is also haunted - and inspired - by the past. In 1989, he leaves his law firm in Los Angeles to stage the original act of repatriation to Soviet Armenia, where he goes on to play an historic role in the creation of a new republic. Part investigative family memoir and part history of the Armenian people, Garin K. Hovannisian's Family of Shadows is a breathtaking saga of tragedy, memory, and redemption that illuminates the long shadows that history casts on the lives of men.
I Must Say: My Life As a Humble Comedy Legend
In this engagingly witty, wise, and heartfelt memoir, Martin Short tells the tale of how a showbiz obsessed kid from Canada transformed himself into one of Hollywood's favorite funnymen, known to his famous peers as the comedian's comedian. Short takes the reader on a rich, hilarious, and occasionally heartbreaking ride through his life and times, from his early years in Toronto as a member of the fabled improvisational troupe Second City to the all-American comic big time of Saturday Night Live, and from memorable roles in such movies as Three Amigos and Father of the Bride to Broadway stardom in Fame Becomes Me and the Tony-winning Little Me. He reveals how he created his most indelible comedic characters, among them the manic man-child Ed Grimley, the slimy corporate lawyer Nathan Thurm, and the bizarrely insensitive interviewer Jiminy Glick. Throughout, Short freely shares the spotlight with friends, colleagues, and collaborators, among them Steve Martin, Tom Hanks, Gilda Radner, Mel Brooks, Nora Ephron, Eugene Levy, Catherine O'Hara, Paul Shaffer, and David Letterman. But there is another side to Short's life that he has long kept private. He lost his eldest brother and both parents by the time he turned twenty, and, more recently, he lost his wife of thirty years to cancer. In I Must Say, Short talks for the first time about the pain that these losses inflicted and the upbeat life philosophy that has kept him resilient and carried him through. In the grand tradition of comedy legends, Martin Short offers a show-business memoir densely populated with boldface names and rife with retellable tales: a hugely entertaining yet surprisingly moving self-portrait that will keep you laughing; and crying; from the first page to the last.
Goodrich, Norma Lorre
Norma Goodrich's prowess as a scholar and historian proves conclusively that Merlin, the legendary wizard of King Arthur's court, was actually St. Dubricious, a talented scientist and magician and notorious ladies' man.
Hundreds of people slam through its doors every day: gun-shot cops, battered kids, drug addicts, and suicides, destitute drunks, homeless people, AIDS sufferers, and accident victims. It's a bizarre parade of humanity looking for help - in the one place they know they can find it. Welcome to the frontline trenches of medicine: the emergency room of the legendary Bellevue Hospital. Here, an army of doctors and nurses faces the onslaught of young and old, rich and ragged, sick and dying. All day, all night. All year. This is their story - an around-the-clock drama of the unexpected: a crane falling on a hapless pedestrian; a crazed executive wearing two-thirds of a three-piece suit; a pretty paralegal aide struggling with an on-the-job cocaine overdose; a trauma victim of an East River helicopter crash clinging to life. It's terrifying, tragic, triumphant . . . and true.
My Life with Earth, Wind & Fire
The Grammy-winning founder of the legendary pop/R&B/soul/funk/disco group tells his story and charts the rise of his legendary band in this sincere memoir that captures the heart and soul of an artist whose groundbreaking sound continues to influence music today.With its dynamic horns, contrasting vocals, and vivid stage shows, Earth, Wind & Fire was one of the most popular acts of the late twentieth century - the band “that changed the sound of black pop” (Rolling Stone) - and its music continues to inspire modern artists including Usher, Jay-Z, Cee-Lo Green, and Outkast. At last, the band’s founder, Maurice White, shares the story of his success.Now in his seventies, White reflects on the great blessings music has brought to his life and the struggles he’s endured: his mother leaving him behind in Memphis when he was four; learning to play the drums with Booker T. Jones; moving to Chicago at eighteen and later Los Angeles after leaving the Ramsey Lewis Trio; forming EWF, only to have the original group fall apart; working with Barbra Streisand and Neil Diamond; his diagnosis of Parkinson’s; and his final public performance with the group at the 2006 Grammy Awards. Through it all, White credits his faith for his amazing success and guidance in overcoming his many challenges.
The Professor and the Madman
The Professor and the Madman, masterfully researched and eloquently written, is an extraordinary tale of madness, genius, and the incredible obsessions of two remarkable men that led to the making of the Oxford English Dictionary - and literary history. The compilation of the OED, begun in 1857, was one of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken. As definitions were collected, the overseeing committee, led by Professor James Murray, discovered that one man, Dr. W. C. Minor, had submitted more than ten thousand. When the committee insisted on honoring him, a shocking truth came to light: Dr. Minor, an American Civil War veteran, was also an inmate at an asylum for the criminally insane.
An Altar in the World: A Geography of Faith
Taylor, Barbara Brown
In her critically acclaimed Leaving Church, Barbara Brown Taylor wrote about leaving full-time ministry to become a professor, a decision that stretched the boundaries of her faith. Now, in her stunning follow-up, An Altar in the World, she shares how she learned to encounter God beyond the walls of any church. From simple practices such as walking, working, and getting lost to deep meditations on topics like prayer and pronouncing blessings, Taylor reveals concrete ways to discover the sacred in the small things we do and see. Something as ordinary as hanging clothes on a clothesline becomes an act of devotion if we pay attention to what we are doing and take time to attend to the sights, smells, and sounds around us. Making eye contact with the cashier at the grocery store becomes a moment of true human connection. Allowing yourself to get lost leads to new discoveries. Under Taylor's expert guidance, we come to question conventional distinctions between the sacred and the secular, learning that no physical act is too earthbound or too humble to become a path to the divine. As we incorporate these practices into our daily lives, we begin to discover altars everywhere we go, in nearly everything we do.
Gilded Lily: Lily Safra: The Making of One of the World's Wealthiest Widows
The mesmerizing biography of one of the world's richest, most intriguing women - philanthropist and socialite Lily Safra In the early morning of December 3, 1999, Lily Safra stood shivering in her nightgown on the grounds outside her sumptuous Monte Carlo penthouse where, just hours before, her fourth husband, reclusive billionaire Edmond Safra, died in a fire. An American nurse employed by the Safra family was eventually convicted of the arson death. Overnight, Lily became one of the wealthiest widows in the world. The Brazilian-born Lily Safra was no stranger to tragedy. In 1969, her second husband, the Brazilian multimillionaire Alfredo Monteverde, died from two gunshots to the chest. The Brazilian authorities ruled it a suicide. In 1989, her beloved eldest son and four-year-old grandson died in a car accident. But just who is Lily Safra? Despite having become a fixture in society columns for her generous charity work and lavish parties, the elegant and enigmatic widow has remained in the background. Gilded Lily tells Lily Safra's story for the first time. Using archival sources, court documents, and interviews with childhood friends and former employees in South America, investigative journalist Isabel Vincent chronicle's Safra's rise from humble origins in Brazil to fabled wealth in London, New York, and Monaco.
A shocking exposé of rampant, decades-long incompetence at the National Rifle Association, as told by a former member of its senior leadership.Joshua L. Powell is the NRA--a lifelong gun advocate, in 2016, he began his new role as a senior strategist and chief of staff to NRA CEO Wayne LaPierre.What Powell uncovered was horrifying: "the waste and dysfunction at the NRA was staggering."INSIDE THE NRA reveals for the first time the rise and fall of the most powerful political organization in America--how the NRA became feared as the Death Star of Washington lobbies and so militant and extreme as "to create and fuel the toxicity of the gun debate until it became outright explosive."INSIDE THE NRA explains this intentional toxic messaging was wholly the product of LaPierre's leadership and the extremist branding by his longtime PR puppet master Angus McQueen. In damning detail, Powell exposes the NRA's plan to "pour gasoline" on the fire in the fight against gun control, to sow discord to fill its coffers, and to secure the presidency for Donald J. Trump.
How Did I Get Here? Making Peace with the Road Not Taken
A literary exploration that asks seeks to answer the question: Have I lived the life I intended?Jesse Browner, a novelist with a full-time job at the United Nations, has written a book reminiscent of the Talking Heads classic song "Once in a Lifetime." Based on an essay he wrote for Poets and Writers Magazine, Browner asks hard questions about life choices, about the tendency to believe there is a parallel life that might have been more fulfilling or more free. He wonders: Is the true artist made by single-minded devotion to his craft? Do we compromise our dreams in service to responsibilities to family and jobs?These questions prompted Browner to take a hard look at himself and the evolution that brought him to this moment of existential doubt. In How Did I Get Here? he divides his adult life into five distinct phases - ambition, love, work, fulfillment, and serenity. Sketching portraits of himself at every stage, he looks for idiosyncrasies, commonalities, and clues - signposts that lead him to today. He also draws on the lives of others, from Franz Kafka to his sister to indie rocker Elliott Smith, in search of understanding. What he finds in his courageous quest is bravely honest and inspiring, touching on what it means to live a life with intention and meaning.
The Best Kind of Different
Schilling, Shonda/Schilling, Curt
With insight and helpful advice for parents, Schilling provides an honest and moving glimpse inside her family as she and her husband struggle to understand and learn to live with their son's diagnosis of Asperger's syndrome.
Coop: A Family, a Farm, and the Pursuit of One Good Egg (P.S.)
Last seen sleeping off his wedding night in the back of a 1951 International Harvester pickup, Michael Perry is now living in a rickety Wisconsin farmhouse. Faced with thirty-seven acres of fallen fences and overgrown fields, and informed by his pregnant wife that she intends to deliver their baby at home, Perry plumbs his unorthodox childhood - his city-bred parents took in more than a hundred foster children while running a ramshackle dairy farm - for clues to how to proceed as a farmer, a husband, and a father. And when his daughter Amy starts asking about God, Perry is called upon to answer questions for which he's not quite prepared. He muses on his upbringing in an obscure fundamentalist Christian sect and weighs the long-lost faith of his childhood against the skeptical alternative ("You cannot toss your seven-year-old a copy of Being and Nothingness"). Whether Perry is recalling his childhood ("I first perceived my father as a farmer the night he drove home with a giant lactating Holstein tethered to the bumper of his Ford Falcon") or what it's like to be bitten in the butt while wrestling a pig ("two firsts in one day"), Coop is filled with the humor his readers have come to expect. But Perry also writes from the quieter corners of his heart, chronicling experiences as joyful as the birth of his child and as devastating as the death of a dear friend.
Though not as tall as Everest, the "Savage Mountain" is far more dangerous. Located on the border of China and Pakistan, K2 has some of the harshest climbing conditions in the world. Ninety women have scaled Everest but of the six women who reached the summit of K2, three lost their lives on the way back down the mountain and two have since died on other climbs. In Savage Summit, Jennifer Jordan shares the tragic, compelling, inspiring, and extraordinary true stories of a handful of courageous women - mothers and daughters, wives and lovers, poets and engineers - who defeated this formidable mountain yet ultimately perished in pursuit of their dreams.
The Last Lecture
A lot of professors give talks titled "The Last Lecture." Professors are asked to consider their demise and to ruminate on what matters most to them. And while they speak, audiences can't help but mull the same question: What wisdom would we impart to the world if we knew it was our last chance? If we had to vanish tomorrow, what would we want as our legacy? When Randy Pausch, a computer science professor at Carnegie Mellon, was asked to give such a lecture, he didn't have to imagine it as his last, since he had recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer. But the lecture he gave - "Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams" - wasn't about dying. It was about the importance of overcoming obstacles, of enabling the dreams of others, of seizing every moment (because "time is all you have . . . and you may find one day that you have less than you think"). It was a summation of everything Randy had come to believe. It was about living. In this book, Randy Pausch has combined the humor, inspiration and intelligence that made his lecture such a phenomenon and given it an indelible form. It is a book that will be shared for generations to come.
Award-winning actress Drew Barrymore shares funny, insightful, and profound stories from her past and present told from the place of happiness she's achieved today.Wildflower is a portrait of Drew's life in stories as she looks back on the adventures, challenges, and incredible experiences of her earlier years. It includes tales of living on her own at 14 (and how laundry may have saved her life), getting stuck in a gas station overhang on a cross country road trip, saying goodbye to her father in a way only he could have understood, and many more adventures and lessons that have led her to the successful, happy, and healthy place she is today. It is the first book Drew has written about her life since the age of 14.
The Honey Bus: A Memoir of Loss, Courage and a Girl Saved by Bees
Overview not currently available
The White Masai
The runaway international bestseller is now an American must-read for lovers of adventure, travel writing, and romance. Corinne Hofmann tells how she falls in love with an African warrior while on holiday in Kenya. After overcoming severe obstacles, she moves into a tiny hut with him and his mother, and spends four years in his Kenyan village. Slowly but surely, the dream starts to crumble, and she hatches a plan to return home with her daughter, a baby born of the seemingly indestructible love between a white European woman and a Masai. Compulsively readable, The White Masai is at once a hopelessly romantic love story, a gripping adventure yarn, and a fine piece of meticulously observed social anthropology.
Forty Autumns: A Family's Story of Survival and Courage on Both Sides of the Berlin Wall (Large Print)
In this illuminating and deeply moving memoir, a former American military intelligence officer goes beyond traditional Cold War espionage tales to tell the true story of her family - of five women separated by the Iron Curtain for more than forty years, and their miraculous reunion after the fall of the Berlin Wall.Forty Autumns makes visceral the pain and longing of one family forced to live apart in a world divided by two. At twenty, Hanna escaped from East to West Germany. But the price of freedom - leaving behind her parents, eight siblings, and family home - was heartbreaking. Uprooted, Hanna eventually moved to America, where she settled down with her husband and had children of her own.Growing up near Washington, D.C., Hanna’s daughter, Nina Willner became the first female Army Intelligence Officer to lead sensitive intelligence operations in East Berlin at the height of the Cold War. Though only a few miles separated American Nina and her German relatives - grandmother Oma, Aunt Heidi, and cousin, Cordula, a member of the East German Olympic training team - a bitter political war kept them apart.In Forty Autumns, Nina recounts her family’s story - five ordinary lives buffeted by circumstances beyond their control. She takes us deep into the tumultuous and terrifying world of East Germany under Communist rule, revealing both the cruel reality her relatives endured and her own experiences as an intelligence officer, running secret operations behind the Berlin Wall that put her life at risk.A personal look at a tenuous era that divided a city and a nation, and continues to haunt us, Forty Autumns is an intimate and beautifully written story of courage, resilience, and love - of five women whose spirits could not be broken, and who fought to preserve what matters most: family.
Remembering Whitney: My Story of Love, Loss, and the Night the Music Stopped (Large Print)
Contemplative and private, Cissy Houston has said little publicly about her daughter Whitney's tragically early death. She hasn't spoken to the press about the funny, warm memories from her daughter's childhood or the lovely, quiet moments the two shared as Whitney became a woman - much less the trying and troubling times when Cissy and her family tried to save the superstar's life while it careened out of control. Now, for the first time, Cissy will tell the unabridged and unbelievable story of her daughter's life as well as her own, addressing Whitney's brightest and darkest moments while helping fans around the world understand the complexities of this extraordinary star who died much too young. A legendary gospel singer in her own right, Cissy shows how the lessons from her musical journey helped to shape Whitney's career - from teaching Whitney to use her voice, to witnessing Whitney's first experiences in the music business, to keeping her daughter level-headed throughout her meteoric rise to fame. However, Cissy does not shy away from the difficult realities of her daughter's life. Offering an insider's perspective unlike any other, she sets the record straight about Whitney, exploring both her turbulent marriage and her misunderstood struggles with drug abuse with a candor, honesty, and respect that have long been missing accounts of Whitney's life. Ultimately, Cissy goes behind the tabloid headlines to show the true, human side of this strong, successful, yet flawed musical icon, capturing the dramatic depths and soaring range of an extraordinary woman, along with the pain and heartbreak of a grieving mother as she struggles with an impossible loss.
Mine's Bigger: The Extraordinary Tale of the World's Greatest Sailboat and the Silicon Valley Tycoon Who Built It
Kaplan, David A.
Tom Perkins had a dream. It wasn't to get rich, acquire power, or marry into fame. As the man most responsible for creating Silicon Valley, he had done all that. Along the way, he also managed to get himself convicted of manslaughter in France and become Danielle Steel's Husband No. 5. No, as he hit his seventies, Perkins wanted to create the biggest, fastest, riskiest, highest-tech, most self-indulgent sailboat ever - the "perfect yacht." His fantasy would be a modern clipper ship - as long as a football field, forty-two feet wide, with three masts each rising twenty stories toward the heavens. This $130 million square-rigger - The Maltese Falcon - would evoke the era of magnificent vessels that raced across the oceans in the nineteenth century. This is the biography of a remarkable boat and the man who built it. More than a tale of technology, Mine's Bigger is a profile of ambition, hubris, and the imagination of a legendary entrepreneur.
The Wit & Wisdom of Winston Churchill
Humes, James C.
An extremely entertaining compendium of bon mots, anecdotes, and trivia about Winston Churchill from a leading Churchill lecturer and performer--useful for speakers, students of history, and World War II buffs, as well as general readers. SC, 234 pages.
Warlord: A Life of Winston Churchill at War, 1874-1945
Warlord is the definitive chronicle of Churchill's crucial role as one of the world's most renowned military leaders, from his early adventures on the North-West Frontier of colonial India and the Boer War through his extraordinary service on both world wars. Using extensive, untapped archival materials, Carlo D'Este illuminates Churchill's character as never before, exploring his strategies behind the major military campaigns of World War I and World War II - both his dazzling successes and disastrous failures - while also revealing his tumultuous relationships with his generals and other commanders, including Dwight D. Eisenhower. As riveting as the man it portrays, Warlord is a masterful, unsparing portrait of one of history's most fascinating and influential leaders during what was arguably the most crucial event in human history.
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