A stimulating exploration of wandering, being lost, and the uses of the unknown from the author of Men Explain Things To Me.,Written as a series of autobiographical essays, A Field Guide to Getting Lost draws on emblematic moments and relationships in Rebecca Solnit’s life to explore issues of uncertainty, trust, loss, memory, desire, and place. Solnit is interested in the stories we use to navigate our way through the world, and the places we traverse, from wilderness to cities, in finding ourselves, or losing ourselves. While deeply personal, her own stories link up to larger stories, from captivity narratives of early Americans to the use of the color blue in Renaissance painting, not to mention encounters with tortoises, monks, punk rockers, mountains, deserts, and the movie Vertigo. The result is a distinctive, stimulating voyage of discovery.
The , best-selling sequel to ,???,Like the “funny, brilliant, bawdy” (,) , this book???s many stories???some funny, others intensely moving???display Richard P. Feynman???s unquenchable thirst for adventure and unparalleled ability to recount important moments from his life.,Here we meet Feynman???s first wife, Arlene, who taught him of love???s irreducible mystery as she lay dying in a hospital bed while he worked on the atomic bomb at nearby Los Alamos. We listen to the fascinating narrative of the investigation into the space shuttle ,???s explosion in 1986 and relive the moment when Feynman revealed the disaster???s cause through an elegant experiment: dropping a ring of rubber into a glass of cold water and pulling it out, misshapen. In , one of the greatest physicists of the twentieth century lets us see the man behind the genius.
The triumphant true story of the man who achieved one of the greatest feats of our era???the mapping of the human genome.,Growing up in California, Craig Venter didn???t appear to have much of a future. An unremarkable student, he nearly flunked out of high school. After being drafted into the army, he enlisted in the navy and went to Vietnam, where the life and death struggles he encountered as a medic piqued his interest in science and medicine. After pursuing his advanced degrees, Venter quickly established himself as a brilliant and outspoken scientist. In 1984 he joined the National Institutes of Health, where he introduced novel techniques for rapid gene discovery, and left in 1991 to form his own nonprofit genomics research center, where he sequenced the first genome in history in 1995. In 1998 he announced that he would successfully sequence the human genome years earlier, and for far less money, than the government-sponsored Human Genome Project would??? a prediction he kept in 2001, is the triumphant story of one of the most fascinating and controversial figures in science today. In his riveting and inspiring account Venter tells of the unparalleled drama of the quest for the human genome, a tale that involves as much politics (personal and political) as science. He also reveals how he went on to be the first to read and interpret his own genome and what it will mean for all of us to do the same. He describes his recent sailing expedition to sequence microbial life in the ocean, as well as his groundbreaking attempt to create synthetic life. Here is one of the key scientific chronicles of our lifetime, as told by the man who beat the odds to make it happen.
G.H. Hardy was one of this century’s finest mathematical thinkers, renowned among his contemporaries as a ‘real mathematician ??? the purest of the pure’. He was also, as C. P. Snow recounts in his Foreword, ‘unorthodox, eccentric, radical, ready to talk about anything’. This ‘apology’, written in 1940, offers a brilliant and engaging account of mathematics as very much more than a science; when it was first published, Graham Greene hailed it alongside Henry James’s notebooks as ‘the best account of what it was like to be a creative artist’. C. P. Snow’s Foreword gives sympathetic and witty insights into Hardy’s life, with its rich store of anecdotes concerning his collaboration with the brilliant Indian mathematician Ramanujan, his idiosyncrasies and his passion for cricket. This is a unique account of the fascination of mathematics and of one of its most compelling exponents in modern times.
The remarkable tale of six brothers growing up in the ???50s and ???60s as their father???a highly respected Mayo Clinic surgeon???slowly goes insane.,Author Luke Longstreet Sullivan has a simple way of describing his new memoir: ???It???s like , . . . only funnier.??? , tells the astonishing story of Sullivan???s father and his descent from one of the world???s top orthopedic surgeons at the Mayo Clinic to a man who is increasingly abusive, alcoholic, and insane, ultimately dying alone on the floor of a Georgia motel room. For his wife and six sons, the years prior to his death were characterized by turmoil, anger, and family dysfunction; but somehow they were also a time of real happiness for Sullivan and his brothers, full of dark humor and much laughter.,Through the 1950s and 1960s, the six brothers had a wildly fun and thoroughly dysfunctional childhood living in a forbidding thirty-room mansion, known as the Millstone, on the outskirts of Rochester, Minnesota. The many rooms of the immense home, as well as their mother???s loving protection, allowed the Sullivan brothers to grow up as normal, mischievous boys. Against a backdrop of the times???the Cold War, the Cuban Missile Crisis, fallout shelters, JFK???s assassination, and the Beatles???the cracks in their home life and their father???s psyche continue to widen. When their mother decides to leave the Millstone and move the family across town, the Sullivan boys are able to find solace in each other and in rock ???n??? roll.,As , , follows the story of the Sullivan family???at times grim, at others poignant???a wonderful, dark humor lifts the narrative. Tragic, funny, and powerfully evocative of the 1950s and 1960s, , is a tale of public success and private dysfunction, personal and familial resilience, and the strange power of humor to give refuge when it is needed most, even if it can???t always provide the answers.
In 1999, after a series of wildly adventurous jobs around the world, Sam Sheridan found himself in Australia, loaded with cash and intent on not working until he???d spent it all. It occurred to him that, without distractions, he could finally indulge a long-dormant obsession: fighting. Within a year, he was in Bangkok training with the greatest fighter in muay Thai (Thai kickboxing) history and stepping through the ropes for a professional bout. That one fight wasn???t enough. Sheridan set out to test himself on an epic journey into how and why we fight, facing Olympic boxers, Brazilian jiu-jitsu stars, and Ultimate Fighting champions. Along the way, Sheridan delivers an insightful look at violence as a career and a spectator sport, a behind-the-pageantry glimpse of athletes at the top of their terrifying game. ??An extraordinary combination of gonzo journalism and participatory sports writing, , is a dizzying first-hand account of what it???s like to reach the peak of finely disciplined personal aggression, to hit???and be hit.
At age thirty-five, Cami Walker was burdened by a battle with multiple sclerosis, a chronic neurological condition that made it difficult for her to walk, work, or enjoy her life. Seeking a remedy for her depression after being hospitalized, she received an uncommon prescription from an African medicine woman: ,., is the insightful story of the author’s life change as she embraces and reflects on the naturally reciprocal process of giving and receiving. Many of Walker’s gifts were simple ???a phone call, spare change, a Kleenex. Yet the acts were transformative. By Day 29, not only had Walker’s health and happiness improved, but she had created a worldwide giving movement.,The book also includes personal essays from others whose lives changed for the better by giving, plus pages for the reader to record their own journey. More than a memoir, , offers inspiring lessons on how a simple daily practice of altruism can dramatically alter your outlook on the world.
Alberto Giacometti was born in Switzerland and became a student of the arts early in life. He travelled to Paris in his early twenties and became a painter, sculptor and printmaker. Throughout his life and work he focused on three core themes, standing women, busts and a man in movement. He experimented with surrealism and cubism and kept a riotously colourful list of acquaintances and contemporaries including Picasso and Mir??.,Giacometti was in many ways the perfect subject for a study on the creative process. He was bohemian but still driven. James Lord, an author and his biographer, agreed to sit for a portrait by the artist and this book is the result of his recording of those days. He did not merely experience the day to day activity in the studio or Giacometti’s many idiosyncrasies, Lord recorded the artist’s emotional state and the tribulations and distractions that occurred over the 18 days of sitting. Lord shows us a man who seems irritable but warm, engaging but absorbed in his work.,’Giacometti’s Portrait’ details Alberto’s fixation on his younger brother as a model for his work, his messy surroundings and the cigarette ash dropping to the floor as he became distracted. Creatives of all kinds will appreciate the reliance of Giacometti on the ritual and instinctive in striving to create a meaningful work of art. The two eggs the artist needed to eat, the two glasses of beaujolais and the two cups of coffee that were required are familiar to all of us from the student writing an essay to the artist creating a masterpiece. The earthly fortifications that surround the creation of art which is supposed to transcend them remain fascinating.