The Invention of Nature

Author: Andrea Wulf
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0345806298
Format: PDF
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The acclaimed author of Founding Gardeners reveals the forgotten life of Alexander von Humboldt, the visionary German naturalist whose ideas changed the way we see the natural world--and in the process created modern environmentalism. NATIONAL BEST SELLER One of the New York Times 10 Best Books of the Year Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, The James Wright Award for Nature Writing, the Costa Biography Award, the Royal Geographic Society's Ness Award, the Sigurd F. Olson Nature Writing Award Finalist for the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction, the Royal Society Science Book Prize, the Kirkus Prize Prize for Nonfiction, the Independent Bookshop Week Book Award A Best Book of the Year: The New York Times, The Atlantic, The Economist, Nature, Jezebel, Kirkus Reviews, Publishers Weekly, New Scientist, The Independent, The Telegraph, The Sunday Times, The Evening Standard, The Spectator Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) was the most famous scientist of his age, a visionary German naturalist and polymath whose discoveries forever changed the way we understand the natural world. Among his most revolutionary ideas was a radical conception of nature as a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist for the use of humankind alone. In North America, Humboldt's name still graces towns, counties, parks, bays, lakes, mountains, and a river. And yet the man has been all but forgotten. In this illuminating biography, Andrea Wulf brings Humboldt's extraordinary life back into focus: his prediction of human-induced climate chan≥ his daring expeditions to the highest peaks of South America and to the anthrax-infected steppes of Siberia; his relationships with iconic figures, including Sim�n Bol�var and Thomas Jefferson; and the lasting influence of his writings on Darwin, Wordsworth, Goethe, Muir, Thoreau, and many others. Brilliantly researched and stunningly written, The Invention of Nature reveals the myriad ways in which Humboldt's ideas form the foundation of modern environmentalism--and reminds us why they are as prescient and vital as ever.

The Brother Gardeners

Author: Andrea Wulf
Publisher: Vintage Books USA
ISBN: 0307454754
Format: PDF, Docs
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Follows the lives of six men who shared a passion for plants and a love of gardening in eighteenth-century London, who made Britain the epicenter of horticulture, and transformed gardening from an aristocratic pastime to a national obsession.

Hunger Makes Me a Modern Girl

Author: Carrie Brownstein
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0399184767
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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A "narrative of [rock guitarist and actor Brownstein's] escape from a turbulent family life into a world where music was the means toward self-invention, community, and rescue. Along the way, Brownstein chronicles the excitement and contradictions within the era's flourishing and fiercely independent music subculture, including experiences that sowed the seeds for the observational satire of the popular television series Portlandia years later"--Dust jacket flap.

In the Freud Archives

Author: Janet Malcolm
Publisher: New York Review of Books
ISBN: 159017027X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Malcolm's celebrated account of the falling-out of two unlikely friends is a fascinating portrait of a bizarre, cloistered world and the obsessed men who inhabit it.

The Penguin Lessons

Author: Tom Michell
Publisher: Ballantine Books
ISBN: 1101967420
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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A unique and moving real-life story of the extraordinary bond between a young teacher and a penguin, this book will delight readers who loved Marley & Me, Dewey the Library Cat, The Good Good Pig, and any book by Jon Katz. In 1975, twenty-three-year-old Englishman Tom Michell follows his wanderlust to Argentina, where he becomes assistant master at a prestigious boarding school. But Michell’s adventures really begin when, on a weekend in Uruguay, he rescues a penguin covered in oil from an ocean spill, cleans the bird up, and attempts to return him to the sea. The penguin refuses to leave his rescuer’s side. “That was the moment at which he became my penguin, and whatever the future held, we’d face it together,” says Michell in this charming memoir. Michell names the penguin Juan Salvador (“John Saved”), but Juan Salvador, as it turns out, is the one who saves Michell. After Michell smuggles the bird back to Argentina and into his campus apartment, word spreads about the young Englishman’s unusual roommate. Juan Salvador is suddenly the center of attention—as mascot of the rugby team, confidant to the dorm housekeeper, co-host of Michell’s parties, and an unprecedented swimming coach to a shy boy. Even through the collapse of the Perónist government and amid the country’s economic and political strife, Juan Salvador brings joy to everyone around him—especially Michell, who considers the affectionate animal a compadre and kindred spirit. Witty and heartwarming, The Penguin Lessons is a classic in the making, a story that is both absurd and wonderful, exactly like Juan Salvador. Praise for The Penguin Lessons “I loved this book, and you will, too! It’s as charming, heartwarming, and surprising as a penguin on a roof terrace. What’s more, The Penguin Lessons teaches an important truth: that a single act of compassion can be repaid a thousand-fold.”—Sy Montgomery, author of The Good Good Pig and the National Book Award finalist The Soul of an Octopus “[Tom Michell’s] tone suits the material perfectly. . . . You believe every word. . . . No fool, this penguin. No fools, these publishers, who have unleashed such a delightful and charming book just in time for Christmas.”—Daily Mail (U.K.) “Heart-warming is a wholly inadequate phrase to describe this captivating story that is pure delight from beginning to end.”—The Bookseller (U.K.) From the Hardcover edition.

A Dog s Life

Author: Peter Mayle
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 9780307791924
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Once upon a time in Provence, Peter Mayle adopted a dog of uncertain origins and dubious hunting skills and gave him a name—Boy. Now he gives this canny canine a voice in an irresistible “memoir” that proves that the best vantage point for observing life may well be on all fours. As Boy recounts his progress from an overcrowded maternal bosom to unchallenged mastery of the Mayle household, he tells us why dogs are drawn to humans (“our most convenient support system”) and chickens (“that happy combination of sport and nourishment”). We share in his amorous dalliances, his run-ins with French plumbers and cats, and in the tidbits (both conversational and edible) of his owners’ dinner parties. Enhanced by fifty-nine splendidly whimsical drawings by Edward Koren, A Dog’s Life gives us all the delights we expect from any book by Peter Mayle—pedigree prose, biting wit, and a keen nose for the fragrance of civilization—together with the insouciant wisdom of which only a dog (and probably only Peter Mayle’s dog) is capable. From the Trade Paperback edition.

Minor Characters

Author: Joyce Johnson
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1440621241
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award “Among the great American literary memoirs of the past century. . .a riveting portrait of an era. . .Johnson captures this period with deep clarity and moving insight.” – Dwight Garner, The New York Times In 1954, Joyce Johnson’s Barnard professor told his class that most women could never have the kinds of experiences that would be worth writing about. Attitudes like that were not at all unusual at a time when “good” women didn’t leave home or have sex before they married; even those who broke the rules could merely expect to be minor characters in the dramas played by men. But secret rebels, like Joyce and her classmate Elise Cowen, refused to accept things as they were. As a teenager, Johnson stole down to Greenwich Village to sing folksongs in Washington Square. She was 21 and had started her first novel when Allen Ginsberg introduced her to Jack Kerouac; nine months later she was with Kerouac when the publication of On the Road made him famous overnight. Joyce had longed to go on the road with him; instead she got a front seat at a cultural revolution under attack from all sides; made new friends like Hettie and LeRoi Jones, and found herself fighting to keep the shy, charismatic, tormented Kerouac from destroying himself. It was a woman’s adventure and a fast education in life. What Johnson and other Beat Generation women would discover were the risks, the heartache and the heady excitement of trying to live as freely as the rebels they loved.

About Alice

Author: Calvin Trillin
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 9781588365781
Format: PDF, ePub
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BONUS: This edition contains an excerpt from Calvin Trillin's Quite Enough of Calvin Trillin. In Calvin Trillin’s antic tales of family life, she was portrayed as the wife who had “a weird predilection for limiting our family to three meals a day” and the mother who thought that if you didn’t go to every performance of your child’s school play, “the county would come and take the child.” Now, five years after her death, her husband offers this loving portrait of Alice Trillin off the page–his loving portrait of Alice Trillin off the page–an educator who was equally at home teaching at a university or a drug treatment center, a gifted writer, a stunningly beautiful and thoroughly engaged woman who, in the words of a friend, “managed to navigate the tricky waters between living a life you could be proud of and still delighting in the many things there are to take pleasure in.” Though it deals with devastating loss, About Alice is also a love story, chronicling a romance that began at a Manhattan party when Calvin Trillin desperately tried to impress a young woman who “seemed to glow.” “You have never again been as funny as you were that night,” Alice would say, twenty or thirty years later. “You mean I peaked in December of 1963?” “I’m afraid so.” But he never quit trying to impress her. In his writing, she was sometimes his subject and always his muse. The dedication of the first book he published after her death read, “I wrote this for Alice. Actually, I wrote everything for Alice.” In that spirit, Calvin Trillin has, with About Alice, created a gift to the wife he adored and to his readers.

The Adventures of Alexander Von Humboldt

Author: Andrea Wulf
Publisher: Pantheon
ISBN: 9781524747374
Format: PDF, Docs
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From the New York Times bestselling author of The Invention of Nature, comes a breathtakingly illustrated and brilliantly evocative recounting of Alexander Von Humboldt's five year expedition in South America. Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) was an intrepid explorer and the most famous scientist of his age. His restless life was packed with adventure and discovery, but his most revolutionary idea was a radical vision of nature as a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist for the use of humankind alone. His theories and ideas were profoundly influenced by a five-year exploration of South America. Now Andrea Wulf partners with artist Lillian Melcher to bring this daring expedition to life, complete with excerpts from Humboldt's own diaries, atlases, and publications. She gives us an intimate portrait of the man who predicted human-induced climate change, fashioned poetic narrative out of scientific observation, and influenced iconic figures such as Simón Bolívar, Thomas Jefferson, Charles Darwin, and John Muir. This gorgeous account of the expedition not only shows how Humboldt honed his groundbreaking understanding of the natural world but also illuminates the man and his passions.

The Invention of Nature

Author: Andrea Wulf
Publisher: John Murray
ISBN: 9781848549005
Format: PDF
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WINNER OF THE 2015 COSTA BIOGRAPHY AWARD WINNER OF THE ROYAL SOCIETY SCIENCE BOOK PRIZE 2016 'A thrilling adventure story' Bill Bryson 'Dazzling' Literary Review 'Brilliant' Sunday Express 'Extraordinary and gripping' New Scientist 'A superb biography' The Economist 'An exhilarating armchair voyage' GILES MILTON, Mail on Sunday Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859) is the great lost scientist - more things are named after him than anyone else. There are towns, rivers, mountain ranges, the ocean current that runs along the South American coast, there's a penguin, a giant squid - even the Mare Humboldtianum on the moon. His colourful adventures read like something out of a Boy's Own story: Humboldt explored deep into the rainforest, climbed the world's highest volcanoes and inspired princes and presidents, scientists and poets alike. Napoleon was jealous of him; Simon Bol�var's revolution was fuelled by his ideas; Darwin set sail on the Beagle because of Humboldt; and Jules Verne's Captain Nemo owned all his many books. He simply was, as one contemporary put it, 'the greatest man since the Deluge'. Taking us on a fantastic voyage in his footsteps - racing across anthrax-infected Russia or mapping tropical rivers alive with crocodiles - Andrea Wulf shows why his life and ideas remain so important today. Humboldt predicted human-induced climate change as early as 1800, and The Invention of Nature traces his ideas as they go on to revolutionize and shape science, conservation, nature writing, politics, art and the theory of evolution. He wanted to know and understand everything and his way of thinking was so far ahead of his time that it's only coming into its own now. Alexander von Humboldt really did invent the way we see nature.