May Picks: Non-Fiction

$27.95
ISBN: 9780871404428
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Liveright Publishing Corporation - April 13th, 2016

A groundbreaking work of history that explicates Thomas Jefferson’s vision of himself, the American Revolution, Christianity, slavery, and race.

Thomas Jefferson is often portrayed as a hopelessly enigmatic figure—a riddle—a man so riven with contradictions that he is almost impossible to know. Lauded as the most articulate voice of American freedom and equality, even as he held people—including his own family—in bondage, Jefferson is variably described as a hypocrite, an atheist, or a simple-minded proponent of limited government who expected all Americans to be farmers forever.

Now, Annette Gordon-Reed teams up with America's leading Jefferson scholar, Peter S. Onuf, to present an absorbing and revealing character study that dispels the many clichés that have accrued over the years about our third president. Challenging the widely prevalent belief that Jefferson remains so opaque as to be unknowable, the authors—through their careful analysis, painstaking research, and vivid prose—create a portrait of Jefferson, as he might have painted himself, one "comprised of equal parts sun and shadow" (Jane Kamensky).

Tracing Jefferson's philosophical development from youth to old age, the authors explore what they call the "empire" of Jefferson's imagination—an expansive state of mind born of his origins in a slave society, his intellectual influences, and the vaulting ambition that propelled him into public life as a modern avatar of the Enlightenment who, at the same time, likened himself to a figure of old—"the most blessed of the patriarchs." Indeed, Jefferson saw himself as a "patriarch," not just to his country and mountain-like home at Monticello but also to his family, the white half that he loved so publicly, as well as to the black side that he claimed to love, a contradiction of extraordinary historical magnitude.

Divided into three sections, "Most Blessed of the Patriarchs" reveals a striking personal dimension to his life. Part I, "Patriarch," explores Jeffersons's origins in Virgina; Part II, " 'Traveller,' " covers his five-year sojourn to Paris; and Part III, "Enthusiast," delves insightfully into the Virginian's views on Christianity, slavery, and race. We see not just his ideas and vision of America but come to know him in an almost familial way, such as through the importance of music in his life.

"Most Blessed of the Patriarchs" fundamentally challenges much of what we’ve come to accept about Jefferson, neither hypocrite nor saint, atheist nor fundamentalist. Gordon-Reed and Onuf, through a close reading of Jefferson’s own words, reintroduce us all to our most influential founding father: a man more gifted than most, but complicated in just the ways we all are.


Becoming Grandma: The Joys and Science of the New Grandparenting Cover Image
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ISBN: 9780399168154
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Blue Rider Press - April 5th, 2016

From one of the country’s most recognizable journalists: How becoming a grandmother transforms a woman’s life.

After four decades as a reporter, Lesley Stahl says the most vivid and transforming experience of her life was not covering the White House, interviewing heads of state, or any other of her stories at 60 Minutes. It was becoming a grandmother. She was hit with a jolt of joy so intense and unexpected, she wanted to “investigate” it—as though it was a news flash! And so, using her 60 Minutes skills, she explores how grandmothering changes a woman’s life, interviewing her friends like Whoopi Goldberg, her colleagues like Diane Sawyer, and the proverbial woman next door.

On top of these personal accounts, she interviews scientists and doctors about physiological changes in women when they have grandchildren, anthropologists about why there are grandmothers in evolutionary terms, and psychiatrists about the therapeutic effects of grandchildren on both grandmothers and grandfathers.

All through the book Stahl shares her stories about her own life now with two granddaughters, Jordan and Chloe, how her relationship with her daughter Taylor has changed, and how being a grandfather has affected her husband, Aaron.

In an era when Baby Boomers are becoming grandparents in droves, when young parents need all the help they can get raising their children—and with a grandmother in the running to be our next US President—Stahl’s book is a timely and affecting read that redefines a cherished relationship.


Dad Magazine: America's #1 Magazine for
$18.55
ISBN: 9781594748646
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Quirk Books - April 26th, 2016

This hilarious dad-centric satire is the first magazine written exclusively by dads, for dads! Complete with hard-hitting feature reporting (“What’s Going On with Your Neighbor’s Lawn?”), in-depth lifestyle articles (“How to Talk to Your Son About Growing A Beard”), fashion tips (“Buying Shoes on eBay: A Guide”), and insightful opinion pieces (“These Smoke Detectors Are Too Damn Sensitive, If You Ask Me”), this is the perfect faux periodical for dads of every age, facial-hair style, and sandals/socks combo. Photos, illustrations, and humorous (fake) advertisements throughout showcase all the frustrations, failures, and funny moments that make up the face of modern fatherhood.


Lab Girl Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9781101874936
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Published: Knopf Publishing Group - April 5th, 2016

An illuminating debut memoir of a woman in science; a moving portrait of a longtime friendship; and a stunningly fresh look at plants that will forever change how you see the natural world.

Acclaimed scientist Hope Jahren has built three laboratories in which she’s studied trees, flowers, seeds, and soil. Her first book is a revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also so much more.

Lab Girl is a book about work, love, and the mountains that can be moved when those two things come together. It is told through Jahren’s remarkable stories: about her childhood in rural Minnesota with an uncompromising mother and a father who encouraged hours of play in his classroom’s labs; about how she found a sanctuary in science, and learned to perform lab work done “with both the heart and the hands”; and about the inevitable disappointments, but also the triumphs and exhilarating discoveries, of scientific work.

Yet at the core of this book is the story of a relationship Jahren forged with a brilliant, wounded man named Bill, who becomes her lab partner and best friend. Their sometimes rogue adventures in science take them from the Midwest across the United States and back again, over the Atlantic to the ever-light skies of the North Pole and to tropical Hawaii, where she and her lab currently make their home.

Jahren’s probing look at plants, her astonishing tenacity of spirit, and her acute insights on nature enliven every page of this extraordinary book. Lab Girl opens your eyes to the beautiful, sophisticated mechanisms within every leaf, blade of grass, and flower petal. Here is an eloquent demonstration of what can happen when you find the stamina, passion, and sense of sacrifice needed to make a life out of what you truly love, as you discover along the way the person you were meant to be.


On the Origins of Sports: The Early History and Original Rules of Everybody's Favorite Games Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781579656843
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Published: Artisan Publishers - April 19th, 2016

For the sports fan who thinks he knows it all--an in-depth look at the original rules of 21 of the world's most popular games, from baseball and football to mixed martial arts
 
“A book this informative has no right to be this much fun. On the Origins of Sports is a winner.”
—Dan Okrent, founder, Rotisserie Baseball

On the Origins of Sports is an illustrated book built around the original rules of 21 of the world’s most popular sports, from football and soccer to wrestling and mixed martial arts. Never before have the original rules for these sports coexisted in one volume. Brimming with history and miscellany, it is the ultimate sports book for the thinking man.

Each sport’s chapter includes a short history, the sport’s original rules, and a deeper look into an element of the sport, such as the evolution of the baseball glove; sports with war roots; a compendium of sports balls; and iconic sports trophies.

Written by ESPN The Magazine’s former editor in chief, Gary Belsky, and executive editor, Neil Fine, and filled with period-style line drawings in a handsome package, On the Origins of Sports is a book that sports fans and history buffs alike will want to display on their coffee tables, showcase on their bookshelves, and treasure for generations.


Vitamin N: The Essential Guide to a Nature-Rich Life Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9781616205782
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Published: Algonquin Books - April 12th, 2016

From Richard Louv, the bestselling author who defined the term “nature-deficit disorder,” Vitamin N (for “nature”) is a complete prescription for connecting with the power and joy of the natural world right now, Vitamin N is a practical guidebook for the whole family, offering parents eager to share nature with their kids tips, activities, and ideas for young and old alike.
 
From the author of the New York Times bestseller that defined nature-deficit disorder and launched the international children-and-nature movement, Vitamin N (for “nature”) is a complete prescription for connecting with the power and joy of the natural world right now, with
  • 500 activities for children and adults
  • Dozens of inspiring and thought-provoking essays
  • Scores of informational websites
  • Down-to-earth advice
In his landmark work Last Child in the Woods, Richard Louv was the first to bring widespread attention to the alienation of children from the natural world, coining the term nature-deficit disorder and outlining the benefits of a strong nature connection--from boosting mental acuity and creativity to reducing obesity and depression, from promoting health and wellness to simply having fun. That book “rivaled Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring” (the Cincinnati Enquirer), was “an absolute must-read for parents” (the Boston Globe), and “an inch-thick caution against raising the fully automated child” (the New York Times). His follow-up book, The Nature Principle, addressed the needs of adults and outlined a “new nature movement and its potential to improve the lives of all people no matter where they live” (McClatchy Newspapers).Vitamin N is a one-of-a-kind, comprehensive, and practical guidebook for the whole family and the wider community, including tips not only for parents eager to share nature with their kids but also for those seeking nature-smart schools, medical professionals, and even careers. It is a dose of pure inspiration, reminding us that looking up at the stars or taking a walk in the woods is as exhilarating as it is essential, at any age.


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Body Into Balance: An Herbal Guide to Holistic Self-Care Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9781612125350
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - March 22nd, 2016

A highly accessible natural health guide to all the major body systems and their common imbalances, with in-depth advice on how to best use herbal medicine to support and nourish each system, address chronic health issues, and help achieve optimal health.
 
An antacid or an aspirin may soothe your pain, but it doesn’t cure the cause of your symptoms. Headaches, indigestion, fatigue, allergies, anxiety, eczema, high blood pressure, and other conditions are clues to a deeper imbalance in your body, and learning to read those clues is a key step in maintaining optimal health. Herbalist Maria Noël Groves shows you how to read your body’s signals and support your own wellness with herbal remedies and other natural treatments. You’ll learn how each of your major body systems — respiratory, digestive, immune, nervous, memory, reproductive, circulatory, and more — optimally functions, and you’ll discover how to use natural remedies to nourish and repair problem areas, restore lost vitality, support your body as a whole, and prevent future problems. Groves includes in-depth instructions, with step-by-step photographs, for making your own herbal remedies, as well as expert guidance on buying and effectively using commercial preparations.


Democracy Now!: Twenty Years Covering the Movements Changing America Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9781501123580
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - April 12th, 2016

A celebration of the acclaimed television and radio news program Democracy Now! and the extraordinary movements and heroes who have moved our democracy forward.

In 1996 Amy Goodman began hosting a show on Pacifica Radio called Democracy Now! to focus on the issues and movements that are too often ignored by the corporate media. Today Democracy Now! is the largest public media collaboration in the US, broadcasting on over 1,400 public television and radio stations around the world, with millions accessing it online at DemocracyNow.org. Now Amy, along with her journalist brother, David, and co-author Denis Moynihan, share stories of the heroes—the whistleblowers, the organizers, the protesters—who have brought about remarkable change.

This important book looks back over the past two decades of Democracy Now! and the powerful movements and charismatic leaders who are re-shaping our world. Goodman takes the reader along as she goes to where the silence is, bringing out voices from the streets of Ferguson to Staten Island, Wall Street, South Carolina to East Timor—and other places where people are rising up to demand justice. Democracy Now! is the modern day underground railroad of information, bringing stories from the grassroots to a global audience.