Best of
Non-Fiction

2015

Humans of New York: Stories


Brandon Stanton - 2015
    The photos he took and the accompanying interviews became the blog Humans of New York. In the first three years, his audience steadily grew from a few hundred to over one million. In 2013, his book Humans of New York, based on that blog, was published and immediately catapulted to the top of the NY Times Bestseller List. It has appeared on that list for over twenty-five weeks to date. The appeal of HONY has been so great that in the course of the next year Brandon's following increased tenfold to, now, over 12 million followers on Facebook. In the summer of 2014, the UN chose him to travel around the world on a goodwill mission that had followers meeting people from Iraq to Ukraine to Mexico City via the photos he took.Now, Brandon is back with the follow up to Humans of New York that his loyal followers have been waiting for: Humans of New York: Stories. Ever since Brandon began interviewing people on the streets of NY, the dialogue he's had with them has increasingly become as in-depth, intriguing, and moving as the photos themselves. Humans of New York: Stories presents a whole new group of humans, complete with stories that delve deeper and surprise with greater candour.

Chasing the Scream: The First and Last Days of the War on Drugs


Johann Hari - 2015
    On the eve of this centenary, journalist Johann Hari set off on an epic three-year, thirty-thousand-mile journey into the war on drugs. What he found is that more and more people all over the world have begun to recognize three startling truths: Drugs are not what we think they are. Addiction is not what we think it is. And the drug war has very different motives to the ones we have seen on our TV screens for so long.In Chasing the Scream, Hari reveals his discoveries entirely through the stories of people across the world whose lives have been transformed by this war. They range from a transsexual crack dealer in Brooklyn searching for her mother, to a teenage hit-man in Mexico searching for a way out. It begins with Hari's discovery that at the birth of the drug war, Billie Holiday was stalked and killed by the man who launched this crusade--and it ends with the story of a brave doctor who has led his country to decriminalize every drug, from cannabis to crack, with remarkable results.Chasing the Scream lays bare what we really have been chasing in our century of drug war--in our hunger for drugs, and in our attempt to destroy them. This book will challenge and change how you think about one of the most controversial--and consequential--questions of our time.

The Amazing Book Is Not on Fire


Daniel Howell - 2015
    A world created by two awkward guys who share their lives on the internet!We are Dan and Phil and we invite you on a journey inside our minds! From the stories of our actual births, to exploring Phil's teenage diary and all the reasons why Dan's a fail.Learn how to draw the perfect cat whiskers, get advice on what to do in an awkward situation and discover which of our dining chairs represents you emotionally. With everything from what we text each other, to the time we met One Direction and what really happened in Vegas...

My Life: An Illustrated Biography


A.P.J. Abdul Kalam - 2015
    And somewhere along the way, as I met a million children across this land, I too learnt from a million minds. This book was not written to only tell my story. I want every young reader to think that this book is his or her story too.’A.P.J. Abdul Kalam has been one of the most iconic figures of Independent India. A scientist, leader, thinker, teacher and writer, he achieved remarkable success in various fields. Yet, what endeared him to so many was his dedication to the idea of a developed India, his simple and direct way of interacting with people and his deep love for his fellowmen.In My Life Dr Kalam writes his life story starting from his days growing up at Rameswaram; about working on India’s space and missile programmes; his years as the eleventh President of India; and about his life thereafter. Full of anecdotes that demonstrate the importance of hard work, commitment,courage and innovative thinking, this autobiography is a wonderful introduction to a remarkable life. Beautifully illustrated and simply written, My Life will inspire readers of all ages.

In Order to Live: A North Korean Girl's Journey to Freedom


Yeonmi Park - 2015
    It is an ugly, shameful story of being sold with her mother into slave marriages by Chinese brokers, and although she at first tried to hide the painful details when blending into South Korean society, she realized how her survival story could inspire others. Moreover, her sister had also escaped earlier and had vanished into China for years, prompting the author to go public with her story in the hope of finding her sister.

Between the World and Me


Ta-Nehisi Coates - 2015
    Americans have built an empire on the idea of “race,” a falsehood that damages us all but falls most heavily on the bodies of black women and men—bodies exploited through slavery and segregation, and, today, threatened, locked up, and murdered out of all proportion. What is it like to inhabit a black body and find a way to live within it? And how can we all honestly reckon with this fraught history and free ourselves from its burden?  Between the World and Me is Ta-Nehisi Coates’s attempt to answer these questions in a letter to his adolescent son. Coates shares with his son—and readers—the story of his awakening to the truth about his place in the world through a series of revelatory experiences, from Howard University to Civil War battlefields, from the South Side of Chicago to Paris, from his childhood home to the living rooms of mothers whose children’s lives were taken as American plunder. Beautifully woven from personal narrative, reimagined history, and fresh, emotionally charged reportage, Between the World and Me clearly illuminates the past, bracingly confronts our present, and offers a transcendent vision for a way forward.

I Will Always Write Back: How One Letter Changed Two Lives


Caitlin Alifirenka - 2015
    Everyone in Caitlin's class wrote to an unknown student somewhere in a distant place. All the other kids picked countries like France or Germany, but when Caitlin saw Zimbabwe written on the board, it sounded like the most exotic place she had ever heard of--so she chose it. Martin was lucky to even receive a pen pal letter. There were only ten letters, and forty kids in his class. But he was the top student, so he got the first one.That letter was the beginning of a correspondence that spanned six years and changed two lives.In this compelling dual memoir, Caitlin and Martin recount how they became best friends --and better people--through letters. Their story will inspire readers to look beyond their own lives and wonder about the world at large and their place in it.

The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story


Hyeonseo Lee - 2015
    Her home on the border with China gave her some exposure to the world beyond the confines of the Hermit Kingdom and, as the famine of the 1990s struck, she began to wonder, question and to realise that she had been brainwashed her entire life. Given the repression, poverty and starvation she witnessed surely her country could not be, as she had been told “the best on the planet”?Aged seventeen, she decided to escape North Korea. She could not have imagined that it would be twelve years before she was reunited with her family.She could not return, since rumours of her escape were spreading, and she and her family could incur the punishments of the government authorities – involving imprisonment, torture, and possible public execution. Hyeonseo instead remained in China and rapidly learned Chinese in an effort to adapt and survive. Twelve years and two lifetimes later, she would return to the North Korean border in a daring mission to spirit her mother and brother to South Korea, on one of the most arduous, costly and dangerous journeys imaginable.This is the unique story not only of Hyeonseo’s escape from the darkness into the light, but also of her coming of age, education and the resolve she found to rebuild her life – not once, but twice – first in China, then in South Korea. Strong, brave and eloquent, this memoir is a triumph of her remarkable spirit.

Unoffendable: How Just One Change Can Make All of Life Better


Brant Hansen - 2015
    The idea of our own “righteous anger” is a myth. It is the number one problem in our societies today and, as Dallas Willard says, Christians have not been taught out of it.In Unoffendable you’ll will find things of immeasurable value:a concrete, practical way to live life with less stressadjusting your expectations to fit human nature andreplacing perpetual anger with refreshing humility and gratitude.Unoffendable seeks to lift religious burdens from our backs and allow us to experience the joy of gratitude, perhaps for the first time, every single day of their lives.

The Boys in the Boat: The True Story of an American Team's Epic Journey to Win Gold at the 1936 Olympics


Gregory Mone - 2015
    With rowers who were the sons of loggers, shipyard workers, and farmers, the University of Washington’s eight-oar crew was never expected to defeat the elite East Coast teams, yet they did, going on to shock the world by challenging the German boat rowing for Adolf Hitler.At the center of the tale is Joe Rantz, a teenager without family or prospects, whose personal quest captures the spirit of his generation—the generation that would prove in the coming years that the Nazis could not prevail over American determination and optimism.This deeply emotional yet easily accessible young readers adaptation of the award-winning #1 New York Times bestseller features never-before-seen photographs, highly visual back matter, and an exclusive new introduction.

Freedom Is a Constant Struggle


Angela Y. Davis - 2015
    Davis illuminates the connections between struggles against state violence and oppression throughout history and around the world.Reflecting on the importance of black feminism, intersectionality, and prison abolitionism for today's struggles, Davis discusses the legacies of previous liberation struggles, from the Black Freedom Movement to the South African anti-Apartheid movement. She highlights connections and analyzes today's struggles against state terror, from Ferguson to Palestine.Facing a world of outrageous injustice, Davis challenges us to imagine and build the movement for human liberation. And in doing so, she reminds us that "Freedom is a constant struggle."

Harry Potter: the Character Vault


Jody Revenson - 2015
    Dive into the personal journeys of beloved Harry Potter heroes, and an insightful look at the motivations and actions of the films’ most notorious and complicated villains. Concept art, behind-the-scenes imagery, and film stills track everyone from Harry, Hermione, and Ron to Dobby, Mad-Eye Moody, and Dolores Umbridge, telling their complete stories as they evolve throughout the film series. A comprehensive collection of the movies’ beloved characters, this beautifully designed book is the ultimate Harry Potter character overview.

War Against All Puerto Ricans: Revolution and Terror in America’s Colony


Nelson A. Denis - 2015
    Violence swept through the island: assassins were sent to kill President Harry Truman, gunfights roared in eight towns, police stations and post offices were burned down. In order to suppress this uprising, the US Army deployed thousands of troops and bombarded two towns, marking the first time in history that the US government bombed its own citizens.Nelson A. Denis tells this powerful story through the controversial life of Pedro Albizu Campos, who served as the president of the Nationalist Party. A lawyer, chemical engineer, and the first Puerto Rican to graduate from Harvard Law School, Albizu Campos was imprisoned for twenty-five years and died under mysterious circumstances. By tracing his life and death, Denis shows how the journey of Albizu Campos is part of a larger story of Puerto Rico and US colonialism.Through oral histories, personal interviews, eyewitness accounts, congressional testimony, and recently declassified FBI files, War Against All Puerto Ricans tells the story of a forgotten revolution and its context in Puerto Rico's history, from the US invasion in 1898 to the modern-day struggle for self-determination. Denis provides an unflinching account of the gunfights, prison riots, political intrigue, FBI and CIA covert activity, and mass hysteria that accompanied this tumultuous period in Puerto Rican history.

Operation Ironman: One Man's Four Month Journey from Hospital Bed to Ironman Triathlon


George Mahood - 2015
    After major surgery to remove a spinal cord tumour, George set himself the ultimate challenge – a 2.4 mile swim, a 112 mile bike ride, and a 26.2 mile run, all to be completed within 16 hours. He couldn’t swim more than a length of front crawl, he had never ridden a proper road bike, and he had not run further than 10k in 18 months. He had four months to prepare. Could he do it?

Tortured


Victoria Spry - 2015
    Instead of protecting, loving and caring for Victoria, she forced bleach and urine down her throat, knocked out her teeth, tied her up naked and made her live in squalor. It took eighteen years of heartache and despair before she found the courage to expose her mum.Tortured is Victoria’s gripping story of survival.

Saving Danny


Cathy Glass - 2015
    Trapped in his own dark world, he couldn't understand why his parents no longer loved or wanted him, and were sending him away.While Danny’s parents have everything they could wish for in material terms, they are unable to care for their only child. This is where Cathy comes in. On a cold dark evening Danny finds a place in her home where he can be himself; away from his parents’ impatience and frustration. Often in his own little world, six-year-old Danny finds it difficult to communicate, finding solace in his best friend and confidant George – his rabbit.Cathy quickly becomes aware of his obsessively meticulous behaviour in addition to his love of patterns, he sees them everywhere and creates them at any opportunity – in his play and also with his food. She realises that patience is the key to looking after Danny as well as her well-tried strategies for managing children’s behaviour.With his father refusing to cooperate, it becomes increasingly likely that Danny will be living with Cathy permanently until she gets an opportunity to speak her piece.

The Rap Year Book: The Most Important Rap Song From Every Year Since 1979, Discussed, Debated, and Deconstructed


Shea Serrano - 2015
    Shea Serrano deftly pays homage to the most important song of each year. Serrano also examines the most important moments that surround the history and culture of rap music—from artists’ backgrounds to issues of race, the rise of hip-hop, and the struggles among its major players—both personal and professional. Covering East Coast and West Coast, famous rapper feuds, chart toppers, and show stoppers, The Rap Year Book is an in-depth look at the most influential genre of music to come out of the last generation.    Complete with infographics, lyric maps, hilarious and informative footnotes, portraits of the artists, and short essays by other prominent music writers, The Rap Year Book is both a narrative and illustrated guide to the most iconic and influential rap songs ever created.

Amazed by Grace


Sheri Dew - 2015
    Yet how many of us truly understand grace and how to unlock the power it contains?In Amazed by Grace, author Sheri Dew considers four questions: What is grace? What difference can grace make in our lives? How does the Savior make His power available to us? And what must we do to gain access to the Savior's power?Expand your understanding of grace and broaden your gospel horizon with Sheri as she reminds us that "the central, most compelling, most life-changing message of all time is that Jesus Christ already triumphed over sin, death, hell and every kind of misery. Surely there is nothing our Father is more eager for us to understand than the breathtaking scope of the Atonement of His Son and the power the Atonement makes available to us."

Uniquely Human: A Different Way of Seeing Autism


Barry M. Prizant - 2015
    This perspective leads to therapies focused on ridding individuals of autistic symptoms. In Uniquely Human, Dr. Barry M. Prizant suggests a major shift in understanding autism: Instead of classifying "autistic" behaviors as signs of pathology, he sees them as strategies to cope with a world that feels chaotic and overwhelming. Rather than curb these behaviors, it's better to enhance abilities, build on strengths, and offer supports that will naturally lead to more desirable behavior and a better quality of life. In fact, argues Dr. Prizant, attempts to eliminate autistic behaviors may actually interfere with important developmental processes.Including inspiring stories and practical advice drawn from Dr. Prizant's four-decade career working in universities, schools, hospitals, and in private practice, Uniquely Human offers a compassionate and insightful perspective that parents, professionals, and family members will find uplifting and hopeful.

Black Flags: The Rise of ISIS


Joby Warrick - 2015
    Little did he know that among those released was Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a man who would go on to become a terrorist mastermind too dangerous even for al-Qaeda and give rise to an Islamist movement bent on dominating the Middle East.     Zarqawi began by directing hotel bombings and assassinations in Jordan from a base in northern Iraq, but it was the American invasion of that country in 2003 that catapulted him to the head of a vast insurgency. By identifying him as the link between Saddam and bin Laden, the CIA inadvertently created a monster. Like-minded radicals saw him as a hero resisting the infidel occupiers and rallied to his cause. Their wave of brutal beheadings and suicide bombings continued for years until Jordanian intelligence provided the Americans with the crucial intelligence needed to eliminate Zarqawi in a 2006 airstrike.     But his movement endured, first called al-Qaeda in Iraq, then renamed Islamic State of Iraq and Syria, or ISIS, seeking refuge in unstable, ungoverned pockets on the Iraq-Syria border. And as the Syrian civil war broke out in 2011, ISIS seized its chance to pursue Zarqawi's dream of a sweeping, ultra-conservative Islamic caliphate.      Drawing on unique access to CIA and Jordanian sources, Joby Warrick weaves together heart-pounding, moment-by-moment operational details with overarching historical perspectives to reveal the long trajectory of today's most dangerous Islamic extremist threat.From the Hardcover edition.

Harry Potter: Magical Places from the Films


Jody Revenson - 2015
    Inside, readers will discover the many challenges the studio faced to build the fantastical sites depicted in Rowling’s books, from Hogwarts castle and its many classrooms and dormitories, to Diagon Alley and the Ministry of Magic.Organized by film appearance, Harry Potter: Magical Places from the Films: Hogwarts, Diagon Alley, and Beyond takes readers on a behind-the-scenes visual journey through all eight of the Harry Potter films. Jody Revenson provides detailed profiles of each location and pairs them with never-before-seen concept art, behind-the-scenes photographs, and film stills with supplementary information that reveals filmmaking secrets from the Warner Bros. archives.Gorgeously designed, visually stunning, Harry Potter: Magical Places from the Films: Hogwarts, Diagon Alley, and Beyond is truly is an unmatched look at the imaginative sets that were designed, built, furnished, and digitally enhanced specifically for the films. It also includes real-life scouting locations across the stunning countryside of England, Wales, and Scotland—many of which would later become the settings for Hagrid’s hut, Shell Cottage, the Hogwarts bridge, and other iconic places.This stunning full-color compendium also includes two exclusive bonus inserts: a map of Diagon Alley folded in an envelope in the back of the book, and “The Paintings of Hogwarts” catalog inserted in the text.

Find Me Unafraid: Love, Loss, and Hope in an African Slum


Kennedy Odede - 2015
    With a Foreword by Nicholas Kristof.This is the story of two young people from completely different worlds: Kennedy Odede from Kibera, the largest slum in Africa, and Jessica Posner from Denver, Colorado. Kennedy foraged for food, lived on the street, and taught himself to read with old newspapers. When an American volunteer gave him the work of Mandela, Garvey, and King, teenaged Kennedy decided he was going to change his life and his community. He bought a soccer ball and started a youth empowerment group he called Shining Hope for Communities (SHOFCO). Then in 2007, Wesleyan undergraduate Jessica Posner spent a semester abroad in Kenya working with SHOFCO. Breaking all convention, she decided to live in Kibera with Kennedy, and they fell in love.Their connection persisted, and Jessica helped Kennedy to escape political violence and fulfill his lifelong dream of an education, at Wesleyan University.The alchemy of their remarkable union has drawn the support of community members and celebrities alike—The Clintons, Mia Farrow, and Nicholas Kristof are among their fans—and their work has changed the lives of many of Kibera’s most vulnerable population: its girls. Jess and Kennedy founded Kibera’s first tuition-free school for girls, a large, bright blue building, which stands as a bastion of hope in what once felt like a hopeless place. But Jessica and Kennedy are just getting started—they have expanded their model to connect essential services like health care, clean water, and economic empowerment programs. They’ve opened an identical project in Mathare, Kenya’s second largest slum, and intend to expand their remarkably successful program for change.Ultimately this is a love story about a fight against poverty and hopelessness, the transformation made possible by a true love, and the power of young people to have a deep impact on the world.

It's What I Do: A Photographer's Life of Love and War


Lynsey Addario - 2015
    What she does, with clarity, beauty, and candor, is to document, often in their most extreme moments, the complex lives of others. It’s her work, but it’s much more than that: it’s her singular calling.Lynsey Addario was just finding her way as a young photographer when September 11 changed the world. One of the few photojournalists with experience in Afghanistan, she gets the call to return and cover the American invasion. She makes a decision she would often find herself making—not to stay home, not to lead a quiet or predictable life, but to set out across the world, face the chaos of crisis, and make a name for herself.Addario finds a way to travel with a purpose. She photographs the Afghan people before and after the Taliban reign, the civilian casualties and misunderstood insurgents of the Iraq War, as well as the burned villages and countless dead in Darfur. She exposes a culture of violence against women in the Congo and tells the riveting story of her headline-making kidnapping by pro-Qaddafi forces in the Libyan civil war.Addario takes bravery for granted but she is not fearless. She uses her fear and it creates empathy; it is that feeling, that empathy, that is essential to her work. We see this clearly on display as she interviews rape victims in the Congo, or photographs a fallen soldier with whom she had been embedded in Iraq, or documents the tragic lives of starving Somali children. Lynsey takes us there and we begin to understand how getting to the hard truth trumps fear.As a woman photojournalist determined to be taken as seriously as her male peers, Addario fights her way into a boys’ club of a profession. Rather than choose between her personal life and her career, Addario learns to strike a necessary balance. In the man who will become her husband, she finds at last a real love to complement her work, not take away from it, and as a new mother, she gains an all the more intensely personal understanding of the fragility of life.Watching uprisings unfold and people fight to the death for their freedom, Addario understands she is documenting not only news but also the fate of society. It’s What I Do is more than just a snapshot of life on the front lines; it is witness to the human cost of war.

Ravensbrück: Life and Death in Hitler's Concentration Camp for Women


Sarah Helm - 2015
    He called it Ravensbrück, and during the years that followed thousands of people died there after enduring brutal forms of torture. All were women. There are a handful of studies and memoirs that reference Ravensbrück, but until now no one has written a full account of this atrocity, perhaps due to the mostly masculine narrative of war, or perhaps because it lacks the Jewish context of most mainstream Holocaust history. Ninety percent of Ravensbrück's prisoners were not Jewish. Rather, they were political prisoners, Resistance fighters, lesbians, prostitutes, even the sister of New York's Mayor LaGuardia. In a perverse twist, most of the guards were women themselves. Sarah Helm's groundbreaking work sheds much-needed light on an aspect of World War II that has remained in the shadows for decades. Using research into German and newly opened Russian archives, as well as interviews with survivors, Helm has produced a landmark achievement that weaves together various accounts, allowing us to follow characters on both sides of the prisoner/guard divide. Chilling, compelling, and deeply unsettling, Ravensbrück is essential reading for anyone concerned with Nazi history.

Period Repair Manual


Lara Briden - 2015
    Half the population will menstruate in their lifetime, and 1 in 2 women will struggle with their period health. Lara's book, previously self-published, has already garnered rave reader reviews because of its willingness to deal with this important aspect of women's health openly and compassionately. Containing invaluable advice for women of every age and circumstance, and detailing natural treatments from nutritional supplements to a healthy diet, this book promises to help women change their relationship with their menstrual cycle. Topics include how to come off hormonal birth control; what your period should be like; what can go wrong; how to talk to your doctor; treatment protocols for all common period problems, including PCOS and endometriosis. Thoroughly researched and written in clear and accessible language, Period Repair Manual is the ultimate guide to better periods.

Storytelling with Data: A Data Visualization Guide for Business Professionals


Cole Nussbaumer Knaflic - 2015
    You'll discover the power of storytelling and the way to make data a pivotal point in your story. The lessons in this illuminative text are grounded in theory, but made accessible through numerous real-world examples--ready for immediate application to your next graph or presentation.Storytelling is not an inherent skill, especially when it comes to data visualization, and the tools at our disposal don't make it any easier. This book demonstrates how to go beyond conventional tools to reach the root of your data, and how to use your data to create an engaging, informative, compelling story. Specifically, you'll learn how to:Understand the importance of context and audience Determine the appropriate type of graph for your situation Recognize and eliminate the clutter clouding your information Direct your audience's attention to the most important parts of your data Think like a designer and utilize concepts of design in data visualization Leverage the power of storytelling to help your message resonate with your audience Together, the lessons in this book will help you turn your data into high impact visual stories that stick with your audience. Rid your world of ineffective graphs, one exploding 3D pie chart at a time. There is a story in your data--Storytelling with Data will give you the skills and power to tell it!

Miracle on Voodoo Mountain: A Young Woman's Remarkable Story of Pushing Back the Darkness for the Children of Haiti


Megan Boudreaux - 2015
    Megan Boudreaux had visited Haiti on a few humanitarian trips but each trip multiplied the sense that someone needed to address the devastation--especially with the children, many of whom were kept as household slaves on the poverty-stricken and earthquake-devastated Caribbean island.God guided her every step as she moved blindly to a foreign land without knowing the language, the people, or the future. From becoming the adoptive mother of former child slaves, to receiving the divine gift of the Haitian Creole language, to starting, building, and running a school for more than 500 children, "the amazingness of what God did after I made the choice to be obedient is incredible," said Megan.Three years later, six acres on Bellevue Mountain in Gressier is the home of the nonprofit Respire Haiti at the former site of voodoo worship, and in the area that many still come to make animal sacrifices, Megan and her staff of nearly 200 are transforming this community as they educate, feed, and address the needs.

The Art and Making of Hannibal: The Television Series


Jesse McLean - 2015
    Released ahead of the start of the 3rd season, this book will bring Fannibals into the world of secrets, lies, and intrigue of their beloved show.With stars including Mads Mikkelsen, Hugh Dancy, Laurence Fishburne, Caroline Dhavernas and guest spots by Gillian Anderson, Eddie Izzard and Michael Pitt, Hannibal is one of the most elegant, engrossing and deliciously haunting shows on television today. The Art & Making of Hannibal: The Television Series celebrates all aspects of this unique show. A highly stylized illustrated book featuring extracts of the shooting scripts of the first and second seasons, exclusive cast and crew interviews, behind-the-scenes photography, production notes, storyboards, alongside Hannibal's sketches and music notations. Hannibal Lecter was a brilliant psychiatrist in the employ of the FBI. His task: to help an unusually gifted criminal profiler, Will Graham, who is haunted by his ability to see into the minds of serial killers.

In Real Life: My Journey to a Pixelated World


Joey Graceffa - 2015
    Yet, Joey wasn’t always comfortable in his skin, and in this candid memoir, he thoughtfully looks back on his journey from pain to pride, self-doubt to self-acceptance.To his fans, Joey is that best friend who always captures the brighter side of life but also isn’t afraid to get real. In the pages of his first book, he opens up about his years of struggling with family hardships and troubles at school, with cruel bullying and the sting of rejection. He tells of first loves and losses, embarrassing moments and surprising discoveries, loneliness, laughter, and life-changing forks in the road, showing us the incalculable value of finally finding and following your true passion in this world. Funny, warm-hearted, and inspiring, Joey Graceffa’s story is a welcome reminder that it’s not where you begin that matters, but where you end up.

Ser du månen, Daniel


Puk Damsgård - 2015
    While there, he was captured by ISIS and held for a nightmarish thirteen months. Held alongside hostages of 13 different nationalities, Daniel was starved and tortured, and he was the last of the hostages to leave captivity alive.Walking readers through Daniel’s everyday experiences in captivity, this compelling account also follows Daniel’s family and their nerve-wracking negotiations with his kidnappers, tracing their horrifying journey through impossible dilemmas and offering a rare glimpse into the secret world of the investigation launched to locate and free not only Daniel, but also the American freelance journalist and fellow hostage James Foley. Capitalizing on a Danish legal loophole, Daniel’s friends and family were ultimately able to raise $2.2 million to secure his release. Written with Daniel’s full cooperation and based on interviews with former fellow prisoners, jihadists, and key figures who worked behind the scenes to secure his release, The ISIS Hostage offers a compelling window into life under the veil of the Islamic State and tells a moving and terrifying story of friendship and survival.

Hope: A Memoir of Survival in Cleveland


Amanda Berry - 2015
    . . . I’ve been kidnapped, and I’ve been missing for ten years.”   A horrifying story rapidly unfolded. Ariel Castro, a local school bus driver, had separately lured Berry, Gina DeJesus, and Michelle Knight to his home, where he kept them chained. In the decade that followed, the three were raped, psychologically abused, and threatened with death. Berry had a daughter—Jocelyn—by their captor.   Drawing upon their recollections and the diary kept by Amanda Berry, Berry and Gina DeJesus describe a tale of unimaginable torment, and Pulitzer Prize–winning Washington Post reporters Mary Jordan and Kevin Sullivan interweave the events within Castro’s house with original reporting on efforts to find the missing girls. The full story behind the headlines—including details never previously released on Castro’s life and motivations—Hope is a harrowing yet inspiring chronicle of two women whose courage, ingenuity, and resourcefulness ultimately delivered them back to their lives and families.

The Lightless Sky: A Twelve-Year-Old Refugee's Harrowing Escape from Afghanistan and His Extraordinary Journey Across Half the World


Gulwali Passarlay - 2015
    Otherwise what was it all for?”In 2006, after his father was killed, Gulwali Passarlay was caught between the Taliban who wanted to recruit him, and the Americans who wanted to use him. To protect her son, Gulwali’s mother sent him away. The search for safety would lead the twelve-year-old across eight countries, from the mountains of eastern Afghanistan through Iran and Europe to Britain. Over the course of twelve harrowing months, Gulwali endured imprisonment, hunger, cruelty, brutality, loneliness, and terror—and nearly drowned crossing the Mediterranean Sea. Eventually granted asylum in England, Gulwali was sent to a good school, learned English, won a place at a top university, and was chosen to help carry the Olympic Torch in the 2012 London Games.In The Lightless Sky, Gulwali recalls his remarkable experience and offers a firsthand look at one of the most pressing issues of our time: the modern refugee crisis—the worst displacement of millions of men, women, and children in generations. Few, like Gulwali, make it to a country that offers the chance of freedom and opportunity. A celebration of courage and determination, The Lightless Sky is a poignant account of an exceptional human being who is today an ardent advocate of democracy—and a reminder of our responsibilities to those caught in terrifying and often deadly circumstances beyond their control.

The Art of The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien


Wayne G. Hammond - 2015
    Tolkien's complete artwork for his magisterial novel, published on the sixtieth anniversary of The Lord of the Rings As he wrote The Lord of the Rings, J.R.R. Tolkien’s mental pictures often found expression in drawing, from rough sketches made within the manuscript to more finished illustrations. Only a few of these were meant for publication; most were aids to help Tolkien conceive his complex story and keep it consistent. Many do not illustrate the final text, but represent moments of creation, illuminating Tolkien’s process of writing and design. In addition to pictorial sketches, numerous maps follow the development of the Shire and the larger landscape of Middle-earth, while inscriptions in runes and Elvish script, and "facsimile" leaves from the burned and blood-stained Book of Mazarbul, support Tolkien’s pose as an "editor" or "translator" of ancient records.  The Art of The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien collects these drawings, inscriptions, maps, and plans in one deluxe volume. More than 180 images are included, all of them printed in color from high-quality scans and photographs, more than half not previously published. Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull, two of the world’s leading Tolkien scholars, have edited the book and provide an expert introduction and comments.

Jesus Calling Morning and Evening Devotional


Sarah Young - 2015
    Each morning entry is from Jesus Calling®, and each evening includes powerful and poignant excerpts from Sarah’s bestselling books, written-out Scriptures, and a guided thought for you to focus on just before you turn out the light. Based on Scripture and written as if Jesus Himself is speaking directly to you—words of encouragement, comfort, and reassurance of his unending love—you will find peace even in the midst of busy days.Begin and end each day in the presence of the Savior who is always with you and loves you forever.

10% Human: How Your Body's Microbes Hold the Key to Health and Happiness


Alanna Collen - 2015
    For every one of the cells that make up the vessel that you call your body, there are nine impostor cells hitching a ride. You are not just flesh and blood, muscle and bone, brain and skin, but also bacteria and fungi. Over your lifetime, you will carry the equivalent weight of five African elephants in microbes. You are not an individual but a colony.Until recently, we had thought our microbes hardly mattered, but science is revealing a different story, one in which microbes run our bodies and becoming a healthy human is impossible without them.In this riveting, shocking, and beautifully written book, biologist Alanna Collen draws on the latest scientific research to show how our personal colony of microbes influences our weight, our immune system, our mental health, and even our choice of partner. She argues that so many of our modern diseases—obesity, autism, mental illness, digestive disorders, allergies, autoimmunity afflictions, and even cancer—have their root in our failure to cherish our most fundamental and enduring relationship: that with our personal colony of microbes.Many of the questions about modern diseases left unanswered by the Human Genome Project are illuminated by this new science. And the good news is that unlike our human cells, we can change our microbes for the better. Collen's book is a revelatory and indispensable guide. It is science writing at its most relevant: life—and your body—will never seem the same again.

Every Day I Fight


Stuart Scott - 2015
    Shortly before he passed away, on January 4, 2015, Stuart Scott completed work on this memoir. It was both a labor of love and a love letter to life itself. Not only did Stuart relate his personal story—his childhood in North Carolina, his supportive family, his athletic escapades, his on-the-job training as a fledgling sportscaster, his being hired and eventual triumphs at ESPN—he shared his intimate struggles to keep his story going. Struck by appendiceal cancer in 2007, Stuart battled this rare disease with an unimaginable tenacity and vigor. Countless surgeries, enervating chemotherapies, endless shuttling from home to hospital to office and back—Stuart continued defying fate, pushing himself through exercises and workout routines that kept him strong. He wanted to be there for his teenage daughters, Sydni and Taelor, not simply as their dad, but as an immutable example of determination and courage.Every Day I Fight is a saga of love, an inspiration to us all.

Black Box Thinking: Why Some People Never Learn from Their Mistakes - But Some Do


Matthew Syed - 2015
    Every aircraft is equipped with an almost indestructible black box. When there is an accident, the box is opened, the data is analyzed, and the reason for the accident excavated. This ensures that procedures are adapted so that the same mistake doesn’t happen again. With this method, the industry has created an astonishing safety record.For pilots working in a safety-critical industry, getting it wrong can have deadly consequences. But most of us have a relationship with failure that impedes progress, halts innovation, and damages our lives. We don’t acknowledge it or learn from it —though we often think we do.Moving from anthropology to psychology and from history to complexity theory, Matthew Syed explains why even when we think we have 20/20 hindsight, our vision’s still fuzzy. He offers a radical new idea: that the most important determinant of success in any field, whether sports, business, or life, is an acknowledgment of failure and a willingness to engage with it. This is how we learn, progress and excel. This approach explains everything from biological evolution and the efficiency of markets to the success of the Mercedes F1 team and the mindset of David Beckham.Using a cornucopia of interviews, gripping stories, and sharp-edged science, Syed explores the intimate relationship between failure and success, and shows why we need to transport black box thinking into our own lives. If we wish to unleash our potential, we must diagnose and break free of our failures. Part manifesto for change, part intellectual adventure, this groundbreaking book reveals how to do both.

Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History


Michael Klastorin - 2015
    This deluxe, officially licensed book goes behind the scenes to tell the complete story of the making of these hugely popular movies and how the adventures of Marty McFly and Doc Brown became an international phenomenon.Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History is a stunning journey into the creation of this beloved time-traveling saga and features hundreds of never-before-seen images from all three movies, along with rare concept art, storyboards, and other visual treasures.The book also features exclusive interviews with key cast and crew members—including Michael J. Fox, Christopher Lloyd, Lea Thompson, Robert Zemeckis, Bob Gale, Steven Spielberg, Frank Marshall, Kathleen Kennedy, and more—and tells the complete story of the production of the movies, from the initial concept to the staging of iconic scenes such as the “Enchantment Under the Sea” dance and the hoverboard sequence. The book also delves into the wider Back to the Future universe, exploring the animated television show and Back to the Future: The Ride.Written by Michael Klastorin—the production publicist on the second and third movies—with Back to the Future expert Randal Atamaniuk, this book delivers a range of surprises from the Universal Pictures archives and also includes a wealth of special removable items.Comprehensive, compelling, and definitive, Back to the Future: The Ultimate Visual History is the book that fans have been waiting for.

NeuroTribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity


Steve Silberman - 2015
      Along the way, he reveals the untold story of Hans Asperger, the father of Asperger’s syndrome, whose “little professors” were targeted by the darkest social-engineering experiment in human history; exposes the covert campaign by child psychiatrist Leo Kanner to suppress knowledge of the autism spectrum for fifty years; and casts light on the growing movement of "neurodiversity" activists seeking respect, support, technological innovation, accommodations in the workplace and in education, and the right to self-determination for those with cognitive differences.

A Book of Simple Living


Ruskin Bond - 2015
    In these pages, we watch a wild plum blossom and the moon come up between two deodar trees; we hear a redstart whistle and the rain drum on a tin roof; we recognize the ache of losing love and the consolation of old companions. A Book of Simple Living is a gift of beauty and wisdom from India’s most loved, and most understated, writer.

Girl Alone


Cathy Glass - 2015
    She's never got over it.This is the true story of Joss, 13 who is angry and out of control. At the age of nine, Joss finds her father’s dead body. He has committed suicide. Then more recently her mother remarries and Joss bitterly resents her step-father who abuses her mentally and physically. Cathy takes Joss under her wing but will she ever be able to get through to the warm-hearted girl she sees glimpses off underneath the vehement outbreaks of anger that dominate the house and will Cathy be able to build up Joss’s trust so she can learn the full truth of the terrible situation.

A Course in Miracles Made Easy: Mastering the Journey from Fear to Love


Alan Cohen - 2015
    Delivering inner peace where fear and pain once prevailed, its universal message is unsurpassed in its power to heal. Yet many students report that they have difficulty grasping the principles or keeping up with the lessons. So even while they yearn for the spiritual freedom the Course offers, they put the book aside, hoping to get to it one day.Alan Cohen, ACIM student and teacher for more than 30 years, takes the big-picture ideas of the Course and brings them down to earth in 22 concise, easy-to-understand chapters. Featuring entertaining examples, stories, and real-life applications, this unique, reader-friendly guide will prove invaluable to longtime ACIM students and newcomers alike. A Course in Miracles Made Easy is the Rosetta stone that will open doors for you to understand the Course and use it to generate practical, healing results in your life.

The Land of Open Graves: Living and Dying on the Migrant Trail


Jason De León - 2015
    The Land of Open Graves reveals the suffering and deaths that occur daily in the Sonoran Desert of Arizona as thousands of undocumented migrants attempt to cross the border from Mexico into the United States.Drawing on the four major fields of anthropology, De León uses an innovative combination of ethnography, archaeology, linguistics, and forensic science to produce a scathing critique of “Prevention through Deterrence,” the federal border enforcement policy that encourages migrants to cross in areas characterized by extreme environmental conditions and high risk of death. For two decades, this policy has failed to deter border crossers while successfully turning the rugged terrain of southern Arizona into a killing field.In harrowing detail, De León chronicles the journeys of people who have made dozens of attempts to cross the border and uncovers the stories of the objects and bodies left behind in the desert.The Land of Open Graves will spark debate and controversy.

Alcohol Explained


William Porter - 2015
    It explains how alcohol affects human beings on a chemical, physiological and psychological level, from those first drinks right up to chronic alcoholism. Alcoholism and problem drinking seems illogical to those on the outside, indeed it is equally perplexing for the alcoholic or problem drinker. This book provides a logical, easy to follow explanation of the phenomenon and detailed instructions on how to beat it. Despite being entirely scientific and factual in nature the book is presented in an accessible and easily understandable format. "This is an excellent book written by an inquisitive and educated author who during a period of his life suffered from alcoholism. The book explains in an easily understood language the various effects that alcohol has on our body. In my opinion the text would serve as a great handbook not only for those struggling with alcohol but also medical students as part of their education. I am sure some of my own patients troubled with alcoholism in recent years could have benefitted from reading William’s book and I will be recommending it going forward." Håvard Molvik MD, MRCS, MSc, MRCGP.

438 Days: An Extraordinary True Story of Survival at Sea


Jonathan Franklin - 2015
    A vicious storm killed his engine and the current dragged his boat out to sea. The storm picked up and blasted him west. When he washed ashore on January 29, 2014, he had arrived in the Marshall Islands, 9,000 miles away—equivalent to traveling from New York to Moscow round trip.For fourteen months, Alvarenga survived constant shark attacks. He learned to catch fish with his bare hands. He built a fish net from a pair of empty plastic bottles. Taking apart the outboard motor, he fashioned a huge fishhook. Using fish vertebrae as needles, he stitched together his own clothes.He considered suicide on multiple occasions—including offering himself up to a pack of sharks. But Alvarenga never failed to invent an alternative reality. He imagined a method of survival that kept his body and mind intact long enough for the Pacific Ocean to toss him up on a remote palm-studded island, where he was saved by a local couple living alone in their own Pacific Island paradise.Based on dozens of hours of interviews with Alvarenga and interviews with his colleagues, search and rescue officials, the medical team that saved his life and the remote islanders who nursed him back to health, this is an epic tale of survival, an all-true version of the fictional Life of Pi. With illustrations, maps, and photographs throughout, 438 Days is a study of the resilience, will, ingenuity, and determination required for one man to survive fourteen months, lost at sea.

Living with a SEAL: 31 Days Training with the Toughest Man on the Planet


Jesse Itzler - 2015
    His life is about being bold and risky. So when Jesse felt himself drifting on autopilot, he hired a rather unconventional trainer to live with him for a month-an accomplished Navy SEAL widely considered to be "the toughest man on the planet"! Living With a Seal is like a buddy movie if it starred the Fresh Prince of Bel- Air. . .and Rambo. Jesse is about as easy-going as you can get. SEAL is. . . not. Jesse and SEAL's escapades soon produce a great friendship, and Jesse gains much more than muscle. At turns hilarious and inspiring, Living With a Seal ultimately shows you the benefits of stepping out of your comfort zone.

Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life


Emily Nagoski - 2015
    So where is it? Well, for reasons this book makes crystal clear, that pill will never exist—but as a result of the research that’s gone into it, scientists in the last few years have learned more about how women’s sexuality works than we ever thought possible, and Come as You Are explains it all.The first lesson in this essential, transformative book by Dr. Emily Nagoski is that every woman has her own unique sexuality, like a fingerprint, and that women vary more than men in our anatomy, our sexual response mechanisms, and the way our bodies respond to the sexual world. So we never need to judge ourselves based on others’ experiences. Because women vary, and that’s normal.Second lesson: sex happens in a context. And all the complications of everyday life influence the context surrounding a woman’s arousal, desire, and orgasm. Cutting-edge research across multiple disciplines tells us that the most important factor for women in creating and sustaining a fulfilling sex life, is not what you do in bed or how you do it, but how you feel about it. Which means that stress, mood, trust, and body image are not peripheral factors in a woman’s sexual wellbeing; they are central to it. Once you understand these factors, and how to influence them, you can create for yourself better sex and more profound pleasure than you ever thought possible.And Emily Nagoski can prove it.

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Young Readers Edition


William Kamkwamba - 2015
    William began to explore science books in his village library, looking for a solution. There, he came up with the idea that would change his family's life forever: he could build a windmill. Made out of scrap metal and old bicycle parts, William's windmill brought electricity to his home and helped his family pump the water they needed to farm the land. Retold for a younger audience, this exciting memoir shows how, even in a desperate situation, one boy's brilliant idea can light up the world. Complete with photographs, illustrations, and an epilogue that will bring readers up to date on William's story, this is the perfect edition to read and share with the whole family.

Tranny: Confessions of Punk Rock's Most Infamous Anarchist Sellout


Laura Jane Grace - 2015
    It began in a bedroom in Naples, Florida, when a misbehaving punk teenager named Tom Gabel, armed with nothing but an acoustic guitar and a headful of anarchist politics, landed on a riff. Gabel formed Against Me! and rocketed the band from its scrappy beginnings-banging on a drum kit made of pickle buckets-to a major-label powerhouse that critics have called this generation's The Clash. Since its inception in 1997, Against Me! has been one of punk's most influential modern bands, but also one of its most divisive. With every notch the four-piece climbed in their career, they gained new fans while infuriating their old ones. They suffered legal woes, a revolving door of drummers, and a horde of angry, militant punks who called them "sellouts" and tried to sabotage their shows at every turn. But underneath the public turmoil, something much greater occupied Gabel-a secret kept for 30 years, only acknowledged in the scrawled-out pages of personal journals and hidden in lyrics. Through a troubled childhood, delinquency, and struggles with drugs, Gabel was on a punishing search for identity. Not until May of 2012 did a Rolling Stone profile finally reveal it: Gabel is a transsexual, and would from then on be living as a woman under the name Laura Jane Grace. Tranny is the intimate story of Against Me!'s enigmatic founder, weaving the narrative of the band's history, as well as Grace's, with dozens of never-before-seen entries from the piles of journals Grace kept. More than a typical music memoir about sex, drugs, and rock 'n' roll-although it certainly has plenty of that-Tranny is an inside look at one of the most remarkable stories in the history of rock.

Harry Potter Colouring Book


Scholastic Inc. - 2015
    archive, this deluxe coloring book gives fans the chance to color in the vivid settings and beloved characters of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world. Containing intricate line drawings used in the making of the Harry Potter films, this coloring book includes fan-favorite scenes, creatures, and characters: from Dobby and baby Norbert to Quidditch games and the unforgettable final battle between Harry and Lord Voldemort. Unique and interactive, Harry Potter: The Official Coloring Book is a perfect collector’s item for all fans of the blockbuster saga--whether it's for those who grew up with Harry, Ron, and Hermione, or those who are discovering the magic for the very first time.---From back cover:From the heraldry of the four Hogwarts houses to the extravagant wares of Weasleys' Wizard Wheezes, the world of Harry Potter overflows with radiant colour. Filled with intricate illustrations and elaborate designs used in the making of the Harry Potter films, this book invites you to imbue the wizarding world with colour in your own explorations of Hogwarts castle, the Forbidden Forest, and much more. You will also find pages of magical creatures and iconic scenes from the films, from the Sorting Ceremony in Harry's first year, to the unforgettable final battle between Harry and Lord Voldermort, as well as some of the marvelous props used in the movies, such as The Quibbler, Quidditch World Cup posters, and the Triwizard Cup.

The Light Between Us: Stories From Heaven, Lessons for the Living


Laura Lynne Jackson - 2015
    In The Light Between Us, she tells her story of how she struggled with her abilities, and even denied them, for many years. She explains how she ultimately found peace through a scientific understanding of her gift, and discovered that she could help people come to terms with loss. And she shares the deeply affecting lessons she has learned in her work, teaching us what she has come to understand about the universe in order to help us live better lives in the here and now.

Shaking Hands with Death


Terry Pratchett - 2015
    They fear those things – the knife, the shipwreck, the illness, the bomb – which precede, by microseconds if you’re lucky, and many years if you’re not, the moment of death.’When Terry Pratchett was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s in his fifties he was angry - not with death but with the disease that would take him there, and with the suffering disease can cause when we are not allowed to put an end to it. In this essay, broadcast to millions as the BBC Richard Dimblebly Lecture 2010 and previously only available as part of A Slip of the Keyboard, he argues for our right to choose - our right to a good life, and a good death too.

A Mother's Story


Rosie Batty - 2015
    But her world changed forever when her troubled ex-partner, Greg Anderson, killed Luke in an horrendous attack at the local cricket ground in February that year. Rosie had suffered years of family violence, and had intervention orders in place in an effort to protect herself and her son. She believes the killing was Greg's final act of power and control over her. But Rosie would not be silenced. Since the events of last February, she has become an outspoken crusader against family violence, winning hearts and minds all over Australia with her compassion and her courage. In January 2015, she was named Australian of the Year.

Under Our Skin: Getting Real about Race–And Getting Free from the Fears and Frustrations That Divide Us


Benjamin Watson - 2015
    In a country aflame with the fallout from the racial divide–in which Ferguson, Charleston, and the Confederate flag dominate the national news, daily seeming to rip the wounds open ever wider–is there hope for honest and healing conversation? For finally coming to understand each other on issues that are ultimately about so much more than black and white? An NFL tight end for the New Orleans Saints and a widely read and followed commentator on social media, Watson has taken the Internet by storm with his remarkable insights about some of the most sensitive and charged topics of our day. Now, in "Under Our Skin, " Watson draws from his own life, his family legacy, and his role as a husband and father to sensitively examine both sides of the race debate and appeal to the power and possibility of faith as a step toward healing.

Change Me Prayers: The Hidden Power of Spiritual Surrender


Tosha Silver - 2015
    Covering a variety of topics—from work and finances to love and self-worth—Change Me Prayers shows how to truly surrender to a Divine plan in the most joyous and uplifting way. At its heart, this book is a spiritual guide to help anyone open to this union with Love, even in times of difficulty or crisis, and includes a convenient “Change Me Prayers Quick Guide.” Tosha proves to be a profound, unique, and often hilarious guide to awakening. May the Divine permeate every part of your life!

Sex is a Funny Word: A Book about Bodies, Feelings, and YOU


Cory Silverberg - 2015
    Much more than the "facts of life" or “the birds and the bees," Sex Is a Funny Word opens up conversations between young people and their caregivers in a way that allows adults to convey their values and beliefs while providing information about boundaries, safety, and joy.The eagerly anticipated follow up to Lambda-nominated What Makes a Baby, from sex educator Cory Silverberg and artist Fiona Smyth, Sex Is a Funny Word reimagines "sex talk" for the twenty-first century.

This Naked Mind: Control Alcohol: Find Freedom, Discover Happiness & Change Your Life


Annie Grace - 2015
    They fear drinking less will be boring, involving deprivation, difficulty and significant lifestyle changes. This Naked Mind offers a new solution. Packed with surprising insight into the reasons we drink, it will open your eyes to the startling role of alcohol in our culture. Annie Grace brilliantly weaves psychological, neurological, cultural, social and industry factors with her extraordinarily candid journey resulting in a must read for anyone who drinks. This book, without scare tactics, pain or rules, gives you freedom from alcohol. By addressing causes rather than symptoms it is a permanent solution rather than lifetime struggle. It removes the psychological dependence allowing you to easily drink less (or stop drinking). Annie’s clarity, humor and unique ability to blend original research with riveting storytelling ensures you will thoroughly enjoy the process. In a world defined by ‘never enough’ Annie takes us on an intellectual journey through the world of alcohol and specifically the connection between alcohol and pleasure. She dispels the cultural myth that alcohol is a vital part of life and demonstrates how regaining control over alcohol is not only essential to personal happiness and fulfillment but also to ending the heartache experienced by millions as a result of secondhand drinking. Finally, with perfect clarity, this book opens the door to the life you have been waiting for. Read this book. You’ll be glad you did.

Sounds Like Me: My Life (So Far) in Song


Sara Bareilles - 2015
    In this candid book of essays, Sara pulls back the curtain to expose her songwriting process, revealing all the struggle and joy inherent in creating great work while staying true to yourself.Showcasing her stripped down and confessional writing style, Sara's entertaining and inspirational book tells the inside stories behind her most popular songs and offers insights into finding balance between making art for herself and commercial music for her listeners.

Ashley's War: The Untold Story of a Team of Women Soldiers on the Special Ops Battlefield


Gayle Tzemach Lemmon - 2015
    Army Special Operations Command created Cultural Support Teams, a pilot program to put women on the battlefield alongside Green Berets and Army Rangers on sensitive missions in Afghanistan. The idea was that women could access places and people that had remained out of reach, and could build relationships—woman to woman—in ways that male soldiers in a conservative, traditional country could not. Though officially banned from combat, female soldiers could be “attached” to different teams, and for the first time, women throughout the Army heard the call to try out for this special ops program.In Ashley’s War, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon uses exhaustive firsthand reporting and a finely tuned understanding of the complexities of war to tell the story of CST-2, a unit of women hand-picked from across the Army, and the remarkable hero at its heart: 1st Lt. Ashley White, who would become the first Cultural Support Team member killed in action and the first CST remembered on the Army Special Operations Memorial Wall of Honor alongside the Army Rangers with whom she served.Transporting readers into this little-known world of fierce women bound together by valor, danger, and the desire to serve, Ashley’s War is a riveting combat narrative and a testament to the unbreakable bonds born of war.Gayle Tzemach Lemmon is a Senior Fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations and a contributor to The Atlantic’s Defense One. She is the bestselling author of The Dressmaker of Khair Khana and writes regularly for leading media outlets. A Fulbright scholar and Robert Bosch Fellow, she began reporting from conflict regions during MBA study at the Harvard Business School following nearly a decade covering politics at ABC News.

Free Days With George: Learning Life's Little Lessons from One Very Big Dog


Colin Campbell - 2015
    Marley & Me meets Tuesdays with Morrie and The Art of Racing in the Rain--get your tissues ready, animal lovers! After Colin Campbell went on a short business trip abroad, he returned home to discover his wife of many years had moved out. No explanations. No second chances. She was gone and wasn’t coming back. Shocked and heartbroken, Colin fell into a spiral of depression and loneliness. Soon after, a friend told Colin about a dog in need of rescue—a neglected 140-pound Newfoundland Landseer, a breed renowned for its friendly nature and remarkable swimming abilities. Colin adopted the traumatized dog, brought him home and named him George. Both man and dog were heartbroken and lacking trust, but together, they learned how to share a space, how to socialize, and most of all, how to overcome their bad experiences. At the same time, Colin relived childhood memories of his beloved grandfather, a decorated war hero and a man who gave him hope when he needed it most.Then everything changed. Colin was offered a great new job in Los Angeles, California. He took George with him and the pair began a new life together on the sunny beaches around L.A. George became a fixture in his Hermosa Beach neighborhood, attracting attention and giving affection to everyone he met, warming hearts both young and old. Meanwhile, Colin headed to the beach to rekindle his love for surfing, but when George encountered the ocean and a surfboard for the first time, he did a surprising thing—he jumped right on the board. Through surfing, George and Colin began a life-altering adventure and a deep healing process that brought them back to life. As their story took them to exciting new heights, Colin learned how to follow George’s lead, discovering that he may have rescued George but that in the end, it was George who rescued him. Free Days with George is an uplifting, inspirational story about the healing power of animals, and about leaving the past behind to embrace love, hope and happiness.From the Hardcover edition.

In Progress: See Inside a Lettering Artist's Sketchbook and Process, from Pencil to Vector


Jessica Hische - 2015
    See everything, from Hische's rough sketches to her polished finals for major clients such as Wes Anderson, NPR, and Starbucks. The result is a well of inspiration and brass tacks information for designers who want to sketch distinctive letterforms and hone their skills. With more than 250 images and metallic silver ink printed throughout to represent her penciled sketches, this highly visual book is an essential—and entirely enjoyable—resource for those who practice or simply appreciate the art of hand lettering.

The Fairy Tale Girl


Susan Branch - 2015
    The Fairy Tale Girl is an ages-old story of youth, innocence, love (and loss), grief, discovery, friendship, and magic that begins in a geranium-colored house in California and ends up, like any good fairy tale, on the right side of the rabbit hole. As we've heard so many times, it's not the destination, it's the journey. So, journey back to the olden days with Susan, to the 1950s and 60's, to the land of Happily Ever After, where men were men and girls were girls (who just wanted to have fun), and bring a hankie 'cause we think you might need it.Susan began writing The Fairy Tale Girl as one volume, but by the time she put in all the details, and her art and photographs, it was almost 700 pages, too big, so she decided to turn it into two books. The second book will be coming early next year, and will be called Martha's Vineyard, Isle of Dreams. Both The Fairy Tale Girl and Martha's Vineyard, Isle of Dreams (publication date May 2016) are prequels to Susan's last book, A Fine Romance - Falling in Love with the English Countryside (2013).

Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic


Sam Quinones - 2015
    Communities where heroin had never been seen before—from Charlotte, NC and Huntington, WVA, to Salt Lake City and Portland, OR—were overrun with it. Local police and residents were stunned. How could heroin, long considered a drug found only in the dense, urban environments along the East Coast, and trafficked into the United States by enormous Colombian drug cartels, be so incredibly ubiquitous in the American heartland? Who was bringing it here, and perhaps more importantly, why were so many townspeople suddenly eager for the comparatively cheap high it offered?With the same dramatic drive of El Narco and Methland, Sam Quinones weaves together two classic tales of American capitalism: The stories of young men in Mexico, independent of the drug cartels, in search of their own American Dream via the fast and enormous profits of trafficking cheap black-tar heroin to America’s rural and suburban addicts; and that of Purdue Pharma in Stamford, Connecticut, determined to corner the market on pain with its new and expensive miracle drug, Oxycontin; extremely addictive in its own right. Quinones illuminates just how these two stories fit together as cause and effect: hooked on costly Oxycontin, American addicts were lured to much cheaper black tar heroin and its powerful and dangerous long-lasting high. Embroiled alongside the suppliers and buyers are DEA agents, local, small-town sheriffs, and the US attorney from eastern Virginia whose case against Purdue Pharma and Oxycontin made him an enemy of the Bush-era Justice Department, ultimately stalling and destroying his career in public service.Dreamland is a scathing and incendiary account of drug culture and addiction spreading to every part of the American landscape.

Auschwitz #34207: The Joe Rubinstein Story


Nancy Sprowell Geise - 2015
    A great read..." --Myles Friedman, Finelines Pubslush Review Blog "Auschwitz #34207 will join work by Primo Levi on a shelf of classic Holocaust narratives."--Foreword Reviews Seventy years ago Joe Rubinstein walked out of a Nazi concentration camp. Until now, his story has been hidden from the world. Shortly before dawn on a frigid morning in Radom, Poland, German soldiers forced twenty-one year-old Icek “Joe” Rubinsztejn onto a crowded, open-air truck. The next day, several around him were dead. From there, things got worse for young Joe—much worse. Joe arrived at Auschwitz on April 30, 1942. Only now, in his 90s, has he revealed how he survived when so many others perished. His is a remarkable narrative—a unique story of endurance and courage. Barefooted when he was seized by the Nazis, he became one of New York’s leading shoe designers. Joe’s story bears witness to the ultimate triumph of the human spirit. While the Nazis took everything else, they were unable to take his unassailable joy. His is a story of discovering light in the darkest of places.

Barbarian Days: A Surfing Life


William Finnegan - 2015
    Surfing only looks like a sport. To initiates, it is something else entirely: a beautiful addiction, a demanding course of study, a morally dangerous pastime, a way of life. Raised in California and Hawaii, Finnegan started surfing as a child. He has chased waves all over the world, wandering for years through the South Pacific, Australia, Asia, Africa. A bookish boy, and then an excessively adventurous young man, he went on to become a distinguished writer and war reporter. Barbarian Days takes us deep into unfamiliar worlds, some of them right under our noses—off the coasts of New York and San Francisco. It immerses the reader in the edgy camaraderie of close male friendships annealed in challenging waves.Finnegan shares stories of life in a whites-only gang in a tough school in Honolulu even while his closest friend was a Hawaiian surfer. He shows us a world turned upside down for kids and adults alike by the social upheavals of the 1960s. He details the intricacies of famous waves and his own apprenticeships to them. Youthful folly—he drops LSD while riding huge Honolua Bay, on Maui—is served up with rueful humor. He and a buddy, their knapsacks crammed with reef charts, bushwhack through Polynesia. They discover, while camping on an uninhabited island in Fiji, one of the world’s greatest waves. As Finnegan’s travels take him ever farther afield, he becomes an improbable anthropologist: unpicking the picturesque simplicity of a Samoan fishing village, dissecting the sexual politics of Tongan interactions with Americans and Japanese, navigating the Indonesian black market while nearly succumbing to malaria. Throughout, he surfs, carrying readers with him on rides of harrowing, unprecedented lucidity.Barbarian Days is an old-school adventure story, an intellectual autobiography, a social history, a literary road movie, and an extraordinary exploration of the gradual mastering of an exacting, little understood art. Today, Finnegan’s surfing life is undiminished. Frantically juggling work and family, he chases his enchantment through Long Island ice storms and obscure corners of Madagascar.

The Invention of Nature: Alexander von Humboldt's New World


Andrea Wulf - 2015
    Alexander von Humboldt (1769 – 1859) was an intrepid explorer and the most famous scientist of his age. In North America, his name still graces four counties, thirteen towns, a river, parks, bays, lakes, and mountains. His restless life was packed with adventure and discovery, whether he was climbing the highest volcanoes in the world or racing through anthrax-infected Siberia or translating his research into bestselling publications that changed science and thinking. Among Humboldt's most revolutionary ideas was a radical vision of nature, that it is a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist for the use of humankind alone. Now Andrea Wulf brings the man and his achievements back into focus: his daring expeditions and investigation of wild environments around the world and his discoveries of similarities between climate and vegetation zones on different continents. She also discusses his prediction of human-induced climate change, his remarkable ability to fashion poetic narrative out of scientific observation, and his relationships with iconic figures such as Simón Bolívar and Thomas Jefferson. Wulf examines how Humboldt's writings inspired other naturalists and poets such as Darwin, Wordsworth, and Goethe, and she makes the compelling case that it was Humboldt's influence that led John Muir to his ideas of natural preservation and that shaped Thoreau's Walden.With this brilliantly researched and compellingly written book, Andrea Wulf shows the myriad fundamental ways in which Humboldt created our understanding of the natural world, and she champions a renewed interest in this vital and lost player in environmental history and science.

Rising Strong


Brené Brown - 2015
    The author of Daring Greatly and The Gifts of Imperfection tells us what it takes to get back up, and how owning our stories of disappointment, failure, and heartbreak gives us the power to write a daring new ending. Struggle, Brené Brown writes, can be our greatest call to courage, and rising strong our clearest path to deeper meaning, wisdom, and hope.

10 Steps to Earning Awesome Grades (While Studying Less)


Thomas Frank - 2015
    Thomas Frank, founder of the College Info Geek blog, YouTube channel, and podcast, breaks these ways down into ten steps in this short book.You'll learn how to learn more effectively in your classes, take better notes, remember more from textbook readings, cut down on procrastination, build an optimal study environment, and more.Along the way, you'll find techniques for increasing your study and work efficiency, giving you more free time in college as well.

Kid President's Guide to Being Awesome


Robby Novak - 2015
    From YouTube sensation (75 million views and counting!) to Hub Network summer series star, Kid President—ten-year-old Robby Novak—and his videos have inspired millions to dance more, to celebrate life, and to throw spontaneous parades.In his Guide to Being Awesome, Kid President pulls together lists of awesome ideas to help the world, awesome interviews with his awesome celebrity friends (he has interviewed Beyoncé!), and a step-by-step guide to make pretty much everything a little bit awesomer. Grab a corn dog and settle in to your favorite comfy chair. Pretend it's your birthday! (In fact, treat everyone like it's THEIR birthday!) Kid President is here with a 240-page, full-color Guide to Being Awesome that'll spread love and inspire the world.

All Who Go Do Not Return


Shulem Deen - 2015
    As a member of the Skverers, one of the most insular Hasidic sects in the US, he knows little about the outside world—only that it is to be shunned. His marriage at eighteen is arranged and several children soon follow. Deen's first transgression—turning on the radio—is small, but his curiosity leads him to the library, and later the Internet. Soon he begins a feverish inquiry into the tenets of his religious beliefs, until, several years later, his faith unravels entirely. Now a heretic, he fears being discovered and ostracized from the only world he knows. His relationship with his family at stake, he is forced into a life of deception, and begins a long struggle to hold on to those he loves most: his five children. In All Who Go Do Not Return, Deen bravely traces his harrowing loss of faith, while offering an illuminating look at a highly secretive world.

Selp-Helf


Miranda Sings - 2015
    As a bumbling, ironically talentless, self-absorbed personality (a young Gilda Radner, if you will), she offers up a vlog of helpful advice every week on her widely popular YouTube channel. For the first time ever, Miranda is putting her advice to paper in this easy-to-follow guide, illustrated by Miranda herself. In it, you’ll find instructions on everything: how to get a boyfriend (wear all black and carry a fishing net), to dressing for a date (sequins and an orange tutu), to performing magic (“Magic is Lying”), and much, much more! Miranda-isms abound in these self-declared lifesaving pages, and if you don’t like it…well, as Miranda would say…“Haters, back off!”

Winnie: The True Story of the Bear Who Inspired Winnie-the-Pooh


Sally M. Walker - 2015
    Harry was a veterinarian. But he was also a soldier in training for World War I. Harry named the bear Winnie, short for Winnipeg, his company’s home town, and he brought her along to the training camp in England. Winnie followed Harry everywhere and slept under his cot every night. Before long, she became the regiment’s much-loved mascot. But who could care for the bear when Harry had to go to the battleground in France? Harry found just the right place for Winnie while he was away — the London Zoo. There a little boy named Christopher Robin came along and played with Winnie — he could care for this bear too! Sally Walker’s heartwarming story, paired with Jonathan Voss’s evocative illustrations, brings to life the story of the real bear who inspired Winnie the Pooh.

A Work in Progress


Connor Franta - 2015
    His words will resonate with anyone coming of age in the digital era, but at the core is a timeless message for people of all ages: don't be afraid to be yourself and to go after what you truly want.This full-color collection includes photography and childhood clippings provided by Connor and is a must-have for anyone inspired by his journey.

Human Body Theater


Maris Wicks - 2015
    Maris Wicks is a biology nerd, and by the time you've read this book, you will be too! Harnessing her passion for science (and her background as a science educator for elementary and middle-school students), she has created a comics-format introduction to the human body that will make an expert of any reader -- young or old!

Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Howard W. Hunter


The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints - 2015
    As the Church adds volumes to this series, you will build a collection of gospel reference books for your home. These books are designed to be used for personal study and for Sunday instruction. They can also help you prepare family home evening lessons, prepare other lessons or talks, and answer questions about Church doctrine.This book features the teachings of President Howard W. Hunter, who served as President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from June 5, 1994, to March 3, 1995.

The Story Grid: What Good Editors Know


Shawn Coyne - 2015
    It's like a CT Scan that takes a photo of the global story and tells the editor or writer what is working, what is not, and what must be done to make what works better and fix what's not. The Story Grid breaks down the component parts of stories to identify the problems. And finding the problems in a story is almost as difficult as the writing of the story itself (maybe even more difficult.) The Story Grid is a tool with many applications: 1. It will tell a writer if a Story "works" or "doesn't work." 2. It pinpoints story problems but does not emotionally abuse the writer, revealing exactly where a Story (not the person creating the Story...the Story) has failed. 3. It will tell the writer the specific work necessary to fix that Story's problems. 4. It is a tool to re-envision and resuscitate a seemingly irredeemable pile of paper stuck in an attic drawer. 5. It is a tool that can inspire an original creation. Shawn Coyne is a twenty-five year book-publishing veteran. He's acquired, edited, published or represented works from James Bamford, John Brenkus, James Lee Burke, Barbara Bush, Dick Butkus, Harlan Coben, Nellie Connally, Michael Connelly, Robert Crais, Ben Crenshaw, Catherine Crier, Brett Favre, David Feherty, John Feinstein, Tyler Florence, Jim Gant, Col. David H. Hackworth, Jamie Harrison, Mo Hayder, William Hjortsberg, Stephen Graham Jones, Jon Krakauer, David Leadbetter, Alan Lomax, David Mamet, Troon McAllister, Robert McKee, Matthew Modine, Bill Murray, Joe Namath, John J. Nance, Jack Olsen, Scott Patterson, Steven Pressfield, Matthew Quirk, Anita Raghavan, Ian Rankin, Ruth Rendell, Jerry Rice, Giora Romm, Tim Rosaforte, William Safire, Dava Sobel, Michael Thomas, Nick Tosches, Ann Scott Tyson, Minette Walters, Betty White, Randy Wayne White, Steven White, and Don Winslow among many others. During his years as an editor at the Big Five publishing houses, as an independent publisher, as a literary agent both at a major Hollywood talent agency and as head of Genre Management Inc., and as a bestselling co-writer and ghostwriter, Coyne created a methodology called The Story Grid to teach the editing craft.

Lost Ocean: An Inky Adventure and Coloring Book for Adults


Johanna Basford - 2015
    Through intricate pen and ink illustrations to complete, color, and embellish, readers will meet shoals of exotic fish, curious octopi, and delicately penned seahorses. Visit coral reefs and barnacle-studded shipwrecks, discover intricate shells and pirate treasure. Secret Garden and Enchanted Forest fans and newcomers alike will welcome this creative journey into an inky new world.

American Wife: Love, War, Faith, and Renewal


Taya Kyle - 2015
    Their decade-long marriage had survived years of war that took Chris, a U.S. Navy SEAL, away from Taya and their two children for agonizingly long stretches while he put his life on the line in many major battles of the Iraq War. After struggling to readjust to life out of the military, Chris had found new purpose in redirecting his lifelong dedication to service toward supporting veterans and their families. Their love had deepened, and their family was whole, finally.Then, the unthinkable. On February 2, 2013, Chris and his friend Chad Littlefield were killed while attempting to help a troubled vet. The life Chris and Taya fought so hard to build was shattered. In an instant, Taya became a single parent of two. A widow. A young woman facing the rest of her life without the man she loved.Chris and Taya's remarkable story has captivated millions through Clint Eastwood's blockbuster Academy Award-winning film American Sniper, starring Bradley Cooper as Chris and Sienna Miller as Taya, and because of Chris's bestselling memoir, in which Taya contributed passages that formed the book's emotional core. Now, with trusted collaborator Jim DeFelice, Taya writes in never-before-told detail about the hours, days, and months after Chris's shocking death when grief threatened to overwhelm her.And yet throughout, friendship, family, and a deepening faith were lifelines that sustained her and the kids when the sorrow became too much. Two years after her husband's tragic death, Taya has found renewed meaning and connection to Chris by advancing their shared mission of "serving those who serve others," particularly military and first-responder families. She and the children are now embracing a new future, one that honors the past but also looks forward with hope, gratitude, and joy.American Wife is one of the most remarkable memoirs of the year—a universal chronicle of love and heartbreak, service and sacrifice, faith and purpose that will inspire every reader.

Glory Days: Living Your Promised Land Life Now


Max Lucado - 2015
    This may be the day your Jericho walls come down.We all face them. Strongholds with a strong hold on our lives. Roadblocks to our joy. Obstacles in our marriages. Fortresses of fear blocking us from peace. How can we bring down these walls that keep us from the future God promises? Remember the story of Joshua and the battle of Jericho? Those were some formidable foes and big barriers.Max Lucado says the book of Joshua is in the bible to remind us of one thing: God Fights For Us! We can overcome, because He has already overcome. We were not made to stand in the shadow of our walls and quake. We were made to stand on top of Jericho's rubble and conquer. We win, because God's already won.Need a new battle plan for life? Keep walking, keep believing. These may be your Glory Days.

Building a Movement to End the New Jim Crow: an organizing guide


Daniel Hunter - 2015
    Learn about your role in movement-building and how to pick and build campaigns that contribute towards a bigger mass movement against the largest penal system in the world. This important new resource offers examples from this and other movements, time-tested organizing techniques, and vision to inspire, challenge, and motivate.

Where's the Next Shelter?


Gary Sizer - 2015
    He teams up with Megan, a sassy college grad whose indomitable spirit eclipses her lack of experience, and Lemmy, a cartoonist from overseas whose off-kilter commentary on the wonders and frustrations of the trail keeps everyone laughing. Sprawling through the woods and towns of the Appalachian mountains, the trail carries the trio through real and fanciful ups and downs ranging from hilarious to perilous. Much more than an orderly account of mountain tops and meals, it is an adventure about friends figuring things out as they go. It's about screw-ups and solutions, awe and inspiration. If you long for the horizon, or to sleep under the stars, then come along for the hike of a lifetime. All you have to do is take the first step.

Fractured Not Broken


M. Weidenbenner - 2015
    She can’t remember what happened until her mother arrives and tells tells Kelly she was hit by a drunk driver and is paralyzed from the neck down.Earlier that day, Kelly vacationed at a dude ranch in Colorado with her family and boyfriend—able to ride horses and participate in all the athletic events. She was supposed to return to college, to her cheerleading life, to study elementary education and eventually marry her basketball star boyfriend. Now she couldn’t move. In a sweeping narrative and heart-wrenching story, Kelly exposes the truth about what happened after a drunk driver took away her independence and the life she knew. She shares how she found her way back—through faith and pain, her community, her family, and the love of a man she prayed for. Fractured Not Broken is a true story of loss, faith, and a rare love that could only happen in real life. Miracles come in many obscure moments. I’ve spent most of my life awaiting my big break. I expected my miracle to be in the form of a pill, injection, or surgery that would enable my spine to heal and give me the mobile freedom I’ve been praying for. "My miracle came unannounced, and in an odd package. It looked different from what I imagined--untimely, unexpected, unpretentious--yet it fit perfectly. Divinely constructed solely for me." - Kristen Jongen

Resilience: Hard-Won Wisdom for Living a Better Life


Eric Greitens - 2015
    You can only move through it. There is a path through pain to wisdom, through suffering to strength, and through fear to courage if we have the virtue of resilience.In 2012, Eric Greitens unexpectedly heard from a former SEAL comrade, a brother-in-arms he hadn't seen in a decade. Zach Walker had been one of the toughest of the tough. But ever since he returned home from war to his young family in a small logging town, he d been struggling. Without a sense of purpose, plagued by PTSD, and masking his pain with heavy drinking, he needed help. Zach and Eric started writing and talking nearly every day, as Eric set down his thoughts on what it takes to build resilience in our lives.Eric's letters drawing on both his own experience and wisdom from ancient and modern thinkers are now gathered and edited into this timeless guidebook. Resilience explains how we can build purpose, confront pain, practice compassion, develop a vocation, find a mentor, create happiness, and much more. Eric s lessons are deep yet practical, and his advice leads to clear solutions.We all face pain, difficulty, and doubt. But we also have the tools to take control of our lives. Resilience is an inspiring meditation for the warrior in each of us.

The Dogist: Photographic Encounters with 1,000 Dogs


Elias Weiss Friedman - 2015
    Whether because of the look in a dog’s eyes, its innate beauty, or even the clothes its owner has dressed it in, the photos will make you ooh and aah, laugh, and fall in love. Photographed by Elias Weiss Friedman, aka The Dogist, every portrait in the book tells a story and explores the dog’s distinct character and spirit. Themed sections include Puppies, Cones of Shame, Working Dogs, and Dogs in Fancy Outfits, giving every dog lover something to pore over.

The Upward Spiral: Using Neuroscience to Reverse the Course of Depression, One Small Change at a Time


Alex Korb - 2015
    Based in the latest research in neuroscience, this audiobook offers dozens of little things you can do every day to rewire your brain and create an upward spiral towards a happier, healthier life.Depression doesn't happen all at once. It starts gradually and builds momentum over time. If you go through a difficult experience, you may stop taking care of yourself. You may stop exercising and eating healthy, which will end up making you feel even worse as time goes on. You are caught in a downward spiral, but you may feel too tired, too overwhelmed, and too scared to try and pull yourself back up. The good news is that just one small step can be a step in the right direction.In The Upward Spiral, neuroscientist Alex Korb demystifies the neurological processes in the brain that cause depression and offers effective ways to get better "one little step at a time". In the book, you'll discover that there isn't "one big solution" that will solve your depression. Instead, there are dozens of small, practical things you can do to alleviate your symptoms and start healing. Some are as simple as relaxing certain muscles to reduce feelings of anxiety, while others involve making small efforts toward more positive social interactions. Small steps in the right direction can have profound effects giving you the power to literally "reshape" your brain.Like most people, you probably didn't wake up one day and find yourself completely depressed. Instead, it probably happened over time, as a series of reactions to difficult situations and negative thinking. But if you are ready to reverse the trajectory of your depression and find lasting happiness, this book will show you how.

Doing Good Better: How Effective Altruism Can Help You Make a Difference


William MacAskill - 2015
    We donate our time and money to charities and causes we deem worthy, choose careers we consider meaningful, and patronize businesses and buy products we believe make the world a better place. Unfortunately, we often base these decisions on assumptions and emotions rather than facts. As a result, even our best intentions often lead to ineffective—and sometimes downright harmful—outcomes. How can we do better? While a researcher at Oxford, trying to figure out which career would allow him to have the greatest impact, William MacAskill confronted this problem head on. He discovered that much of the potential for change was being squandered by lack of information, bad data, and our own prejudice. As an antidote, he and his colleagues developed effective altruism, a practical, data-driven approach that allows each of us to make a tremendous difference regardless of our resources. Effective altruists believe that it’s not enough to simply do good; we must do good better. At the core of this philosophy are five key questions that help guide our altruistic decisions: How many people benefit, and by how much? Is this the most effective thing I can do? Is this area neglected? What would have happened otherwise? What are the chances of success, and how good would success be? By applying these questions to real-life scenarios, MacAskill shows how many of our assumptions about doing good are misguided. For instance, he argues one can potentially save more lives by becoming a plastic surgeon rather than a heart surgeon; measuring overhead costs is an inaccurate gauge of a charity’s effectiveness; and, it generally doesn’t make sense for individuals to donate to disaster relief. MacAskill urges us to think differently, set aside biases, and use evidence and careful reasoning rather than act on impulse. When we do this—when we apply the head and the heart to each of our altruistic endeavors—we find that each of us has the power to do an astonishing amount of good.

Rationality: From AI to Zombies


Eliezer Yudkowsky - 2015
    Real rationality, of the sort studied by psychologists, social scientists, and mathematicians. The kind of rationality where you make good decisions, even when it's hard; where you reason well, even in the face of massive uncertainty; where you recognize and make full use of your fuzzy intuitions and emotions, rather than trying to discard them. In "Rationality: From AI to Zombies," Eliezer Yudkowsky explains the science underlying human irrationality with a mix of fables, argumentative essays, and personal vignettes. These eye-opening accounts of how the mind works (and how, all too often, it doesn't!) are then put to the test through some genuinely difficult puzzles: computer scientists' debates about the future of artificial intelligence (AI), physicists' debates about the relationship between the quantum and classical worlds, philosophers' debates about the metaphysics of zombies and the nature of morality, and many more. In the process, "Rationality: From AI to Zombies" delves into the human significance of correct reasoning more deeply than you'll find in any conventional textbook on cognitive science or philosophy of mind. A decision theorist and researcher at the Machine Intelligence Research Institute, Yudkowsky published earlier drafts of his writings to the websites Overcoming Bias and Less Wrong. "Rationality: From AI to Zombies" compiles six volumes of Yudkowsky's essays into a single electronic tome. Collectively, these sequences of linked essays serve as a rich and lively introduction to the science—and the art—of human rationality.

Four Waifs on our Doorstep


Trisha Merry - 2015
    Two social workers dropped them off with nothing but the ragged clothes they were wearing and no information. The children were covered in bruises, two had black eyes, one had a broken arm and they were all scratching themselves. Starved, seriously neglected and abused in every way, four young siblings have been repeatedly overlooked by everyone who should have cared. The eldest scavenges for food by night and is exhausted from trying to protect his sisters, his baby brother and himself from serious parental neglect and the perilous attentions of frequent paedophile visitors. From the start, these four children challenge Trisha and Mike to extremes. Despite all their experience over many years, they wonder if they have met their match. Yet, from that very first night, this couple's unbounded love and care and their unbelievable determination surmount all the obstacles that follow. The shocking truth about the children's home lives is beyond anything Trish and Mike have experienced, yet through their formidable efforts, their unshakeable belief in the children, and their (almost) unfailing sense of humour, they are able to turn around four young lives from tragedy to hope.

Three More Words


Ashley Rhodes-Courter - 2015
    Her memoir, Three Little Words, captivated audiences everywhere and went on to become a New York Times bestseller. Now Ashley reveals the nuances of life after foster care: College and its assorted hijinks, including meeting “the one.” Marriage, which began with a beautiful wedding on a boat that was almost hijacked (literally) by some biological family members. Having kids—from fostering children and the heartbreak of watching them return to destructive environments, to the miraculous joy of blending biological and adopted offspring.Whether she’s overcoming self-image issues, responding to calls for her to run for Senate, or dealing with continuing drama from her biological family, Ashley Rhodes-Courter never fails to impress or inspire with her authentic voice and uplifting message.

Black Earth: The Holocaust as History and Warning


Timothy Snyder - 2015
    Based on new sources from eastern Europe and forgotten testimonies from Jewish survivors, Black Earth recounts the mass murder of the Jews as an event that is still close to us, more comprehensible than we would like to think, and thus all the more terrifying.The Holocaust began in a dark but accessible place, in Hitler's mind, with the thought that the elimination of Jews would restore balance to the planet and allow Germans to win the resources they desperately needed. Such a worldview could be realized only if Germany destroyed other states, so Hitler's aim was a colonial war in Europe itself. In the zones of statelessness, almost all Jews died. A few people, the righteous few, aided them, without support from institutions. Much of the new research in this book is devoted to understanding these extraordinary individuals. The almost insurmountable difficulties they faced only confirm the dangers of state destruction and ecological panic. These men and women should be emulated, but in similar circumstances few of us would do so.  By overlooking the lessons of the Holocaust, Snyder concludes, we have misunderstood modernity and endangered the future. The early twenty-first century is coming to resemble the early twentieth, as growing preoccupations with food and water accompany ideological challenges to global order. Our world is closer to Hitler's than we like to admit, and saving it requires us to see the Holocaust as it was -- and ourselves as we are.  Groundbreaking, authoritative, and utterly absorbing, Black Earth reveals a Holocaust that is not only history but warning.

Instrumental: A Memoir of Madness, Medication and Music


James Rhodes - 2015
    It has been the thread that has held him together through a life that has encompassed abuse, breakdown and addiction. Listening to Rachmaninov on a loop as a traumatised teenager or discovering an Adagio by Bach while in a psychiatric ward - such exquisite miracles of musical genius have helped him survive his demons, and, along with a chance encounter with a stranger, inspired him to become the renowned concert pianist he is today. This is a memoir like no other: unapologetically candid, boldly outspoken and surprisingly funny - James' prose is shot through with an unexpectedly mordant wit, even at the darkest of moments. An impassioned tribute to the therapeutic powers of music, Instrumental also weaves in fascinating facts about how classical music actually works and about the extraordinary lives of some of the great composers. It explains why and how music has the potential to transform all of our lives.

Crimson Peak: The Art of Darkness


Mark Salisbury - 2015
    This deluxe book explores the creation of del Toro’s sinister masterpiece and the dark themes and motifs woven into every frame of this extraordinary film. Featuring extensive interviews with the director, Crimson Peak: The Art of Darkness chronicles the creative odyssey that brought the film to screen, showing how del Toro’s unique perspective, attention to detail, and storytelling prowess were key in crafting a film of incredible visual richness and thematic power. The book also features extensive interviews with the team of artists who helped realize the world of Crimson Peak, from the film’s sumptuous period costumes to the dilapidated majesty of Allerdale Hall and the eerie red-hued ghosts that haunt the halls of “Crimson Peak.” Also featuring insights from the films stars, including Mia Wasikowska, Tom Hiddleston, Jessica Chastain, and Charlie Hunnam, Crimson Peak: The Art of Darkness explores the themes at the heart of this breathtaking supernatural mystery in unparalleled detail. Filled with striking concept art and stunning photography, the book also features a range of amazing special items, including an authentic period letter, daguerreotype photographs, biographies that reveal the secret history of Crimson Peak’s characters, a booklet that showcases the film’s amazing costume designs, and more. A thrilling journey into the macabre heart of Guillermo del Toro’s spine-chilling new tale, Crimson Peak: The Art of Darkness is the perfect companion to this gothic horror masterwork.

Prisoners of Geography: Ten Maps That Tell You Everything You Need to Know About Global Politics


Tim Marshall - 2015
    Their choices are limited by mountains, rivers, seas, and concrete. To understand world events, news organizations and other authorities often focus on people, ideas, and political movements, but without geography, we never have the full picture. Now, in the relevant and timely Prisoners of Geography, seasoned journalist Tim Marshall examines Russia, China, the USA, Latin America, the Middle East, Africa, Europe, Japan and Korea, and Greenland and the Arctic—their weather, seas, mountains, rivers, deserts, and borders—to provide a context often missing from our political reportage: how the physical characteristics of these countries affect their strengths and vulnerabilities and the decisions made by their leaders.In ten, up-to-date maps of each region, Marshall explains in clear and engaging prose the complex geo-political strategies of these key parts of the globe. What does it mean that Russia must have a navy, but also has frozen ports six months a year? How does this affect Putin’s treatment of Ukraine? How is China’s future constrained by its geography? Why will Europe never be united? Why will America never be invaded? Shining a light on the unavoidable physical realities that shape all of our aspirations and endeavors, Prisoners of Geography is the critical guide to one of the major (and most often overlooked) determining factors in world history.

Proteinaholic: How Our Obsession with Meat Is Killing Us and What We Can Do About It


Garth Davis - 2015
    Foods, drinks, and supplements are loaded with extra protein. Many people use protein for weight control, to gain or lose pounds, while others believe it gives them more energy and is essential for a longer, healthier life. Now, Dr. Garth Davis, an expert in weight loss asks, “Is all this protein making us healthier?”The answer, he emphatically argues, is NO. Too much protein is actually making us sick, fat, and tired, according to Dr. Davis. If you are getting adequate calories in your diet, there is no such thing as protein deficiency. The healthiest countries in the world eat far less protein than we do and yet we have an entire nation on a protein binge getting sicker by the day.As a surgeon treating obese patients, Dr. Davis was frustrated by the ever-increasing number of sick and overweight patients, but it wasn't until his own health scare that he realized he could do something about it. Combining cutting-edge research, with his hands-on patient experience and his years dedicated to analyzing studies of the world’s longest-lived populations, this explosive, groundbreaking book reveals the truth about the dangers of protein and shares a proven approach to weight loss, health, and longevity.

I Forgot to Die


Khalil Rafati - 2015
    He was working with Hollywood movie stars and legendary rock musicians, but it wasn't long before he found his way into the dark underbelly of the City of Angels. When he hit rock bottom addicted to heroin and cocaine, overtaken by paranoia and psychosis, written off by his friends and family he grabbed a shovel and kept digging. At 33, Khalil was 109 pounds, a convicted felon, high school dropout, and homeless junkie living on the infamous Skid Row in downtown L.A. So how does someone with nothing, who feels like they deserve nothing, and who just wants to end it all turn their life around? I Forgot to Die is an incredible true story of pain, suffering, addiction and redemption and how one man ultimately conquered his demons and wrote himself a new life story.

Tough As They Come


Travis Mills - 2015
    Five have survived quadruple amputee injuries. This is one soldier's story.    Thousands of soldiers die year to defend their country. United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills was sure that he would become another statistic when, during his third tour of duty in Afghanistan, he was caught in an IED blast four days before his twenty-fifth birthday. Against the odds, he lived, but at a severe cost—Travis became one of only five soldiers from the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to survive a quadruple amputation.   Suddenly forced to reconcile with the fact that he no longer had arms or legs, Travis was faced with a future drastically different from the one he had imagined for himself. He would never again be able to lead his squad, stroke his fingers against his wife’s cheek, or pick up his infant daughter.   Travis struggled through the painful and anxious days of rehabilitation so that he could regain the strength to live his life to the fullest.  With enormous willpower and endurance, the unconditional love of his family, and a generous amount of faith, Travis shocked everyone with his remarkable recovery. Even without limbs, he still swims, dances with his wife, rides mountain bikes, and drives his daughter to school.    Travis inspires thousands every day with his remarkable journey. He doesn’t want to be thought of as wounded.  “I'm just a man with scars,” he says, “living life to the fullest and best I know how.”

How Music Got Free: The End of an Industry, the Turn of the Century, and the Patient Zero of Piracy


Stephen Richard Witt - 2015
    It’s about the greatest pirate in history, the most powerful executive in the music business, a revolutionary invention and an illegal website four times the size of the iTunes Music Store. Journalist Stephen Witt traces the secret history of digital music piracy, from the German audio engineers who invented the mp3, to a North Carolina compact-disc manufacturing plant where factory worker Dell Glover leaked nearly two thousand albums over the course of a decade, to the high-rises of midtown Manhattan where music executive Doug Morris cornered the global market on rap, and, finally, into the darkest recesses of the Internet.Through these interwoven narratives, Witt has written a thrilling book that depicts the moment in history when ordinary life became forever entwined with the world online — when, suddenly, all the music ever recorded was available for free. In the page-turning tradition of writers like Michael Lewis and Lawrence Wright, Witt’s deeply-reported first book introduces the unforgettable characters—inventors, executives, factory workers, and smugglers—who revolutionized an entire artform, and reveals for the first time the secret underworld of media pirates that transformed our digital lives.An irresistible never-before-told story of greed, cunning, genius, and deceit, How Music Got Free isn’t just a story of the music industry—it’s a must-read history of the Internet itself.

Trauma Room Two


Philip Allen Green - 2015
    It is a place where life and death meet. A place where some families celebrate the most improbable of victories while others face the most devastating of losses. A place where what matters the most in this life is revealed. Trauma Room Two is just such a place. In this collection of short stories, Dr. Green takes the reader inside the hidden emotional landscape of emergency medicine. Based on fifteen years of experience as an ER physician, he reveals the profound moments that often occur in emergency rooms for patients, their families, and the staff that work there.

The Raven's Prophecy Tarot [Manual]


Maggie Stiefvater - 2015
    The manual does not include a separate ISBN and is not sold separately.The iridescent sheen of a raven's wing reveals a tantalizing glimpse of the future. A tattooed hand, sinews roiling like ley lines, peels back the gossamer veil that separates this world from the next.With art and instructions by Maggie Stiefvater—New York Times bestselling author of the Raven Cycle series—The Raven's Prophecy Tarot reveals the wisdom of dreams, helping you harness the opposing forces of intuition of cunning, Moon and Raven, spirit and intellect. Inspired by Stiefvater's artist mentors, this deck is a path to a more creative life for everyone.

The Billion Dollar Spy: A True Story of Cold War Espionage and Betrayal


David E. Hoffman - 2015
    A man on the curb handed him an envelope whose contents stunned U.S. intelligence: details of top-secret Soviet research and developments in military technology that were totally unknown to the United States. In the years that followed, the man, Adolf Tolkachev, an engineer in a Soviet military design bureau, used his high-level access to hand over tens of thousands of pages of technical secrets. His revelations allowed America to reshape its weapons systems to defeat Soviet radar on the ground and in the air, giving the United States near total superiority in the skies over Europe.One of the most valuable spies to work for the United States in the four decades of global confrontation with the Soviet Union, Tolkachev took enormous personal risks—but so did the Americans. The CIA had long struggled to recruit and run agents in Moscow, and Tolkachev was a singular breakthrough. Using spy cameras and secret codes as well as face-to-face meetings in parks and on street corners, Tolkachev and his handlers succeeded for years in eluding the feared KGB in its own backyard, until the day came when a shocking betrayal put them all at risk.Drawing on previously secret documents obtained from the CIA and on interviews with participants, David Hoffman has created an unprecedented and poignant portrait of Tolkachev, a man motivated by the depredations of the Soviet state to master the craft of spying against his own country. Stirring, unpredictable, and at times unbearably tense, The Billion Dollar Spy is a brilliant feat of reporting that unfolds like an espionage thriller.