For decades, acclaimed author John Barth has strayed from his Monday-through-Thursday-morning routine of fiction-writing and dedicated Friday mornings to the muse of nonfiction. The result is Final Fridays, his third essay collection, following _The Friday Book _(1984) and Further Fridays (1995). Sixteen years and six novels since his last volume of non-fiction, Barth delivers yet another remarkable work comprised of 27 insightful essays.
With pieces covering everything from reading, writing, and the state of the art, to tributes to writer-friends and family members, this collection is witty and engaging throughout. Barth’s “unaffected love of learning” ( San Francisco Examiner & Chronicle ) and “joy in thinking that becomes contagious” ( Washington Post ), shine through in this third, and, with an implied question mark, final essay collection.
Roger Lowenstein - When Genius Failed
John Meriwether, a famously successful Wall Street trader, spent the 1980s as a partner at Salomon Brothers, establishing the best--and the brainiest--bond arbitrage group in the world. A mysterious and shy midwesterner, he knitted together a group of Ph.D.-certified arbitrageurs who rewarded him with filial devotion and fabulous profits. Then, in 1991, in the wake of a scandal involving one of his traders, Meriwether abruptly resigned. For two years, his fiercely loyal team--convinced that the chief had been unfairly victimized--plotted their boss's return. Then, in 1993, Meriwether made a historic offer. He gathered together his former disciples and a handful of supereconomists from academia and proposed that they become partners in a new hedge fund different from any Wall Street had ever seen. And so Long-Term Capital Management was born. In a decade that had seen the longest and most rewarding bull market in history, hedge funds were the ne plus ultra of investments: discreet, private clubs limited to those rich enough to pony up millions. They promised that the investors' money would be placed in a variety of trades simultaneously--a "hedging" strategy designed to minimize the possibility of loss. At Long-Term, Meriwether & Co. truly believed that their finely tuned computer models had tamed the genie of risk, and would allow them to bet on the future with near mathematical certainty. And thanks to their cast--which included a pair of future Nobel Prize winners--investors believed them. From the moment Long-Term opened their offices in posh Greenwich, Connecticut, miles from the pandemonium of Wall Street, it was clear that this would be a hedge fund apart from all others. Though they viewed the big Wall Street investment banks with disdain, so great was Long-Term's aura that these very banks lined up to provide the firm with financing, and on the very sweetest of terms. So self-certain were Long-Term's traders that they borrowed with little concern about the leverage. At first, Long-Term's models stayed on script, and this new gold standard in hedge funds boasted such incredible returns that private investors and even central banks clamored to invest more money. It seemed the geniuses in Greenwich couldn't lose. Four years later, when a default in Russia set off a global storm that Long-Term's models hadn't anticipated, its supposedly safe portfolios imploded. In five weeks, the professors went from mega-rich geniuses to discredited failures. With the firm about to go under, its staggering $100 billion balance sheet threatened to drag down markets around the world. At the eleventh hour, fearing that the financial system of the world was in peril, the Federal Reserve Bank hastily summoned Wall Street's leading banks to underwrite a bailout. Roger Lowenstein, the bestselling author of Buffett, captures Long-Term's roller-coaster ride in gripping detail. Drawing on confidential internal memos and interviews with dozens of key players, Lowenstein crafts a story that reads like a first-rate thriller from beginning to end. He explains not just how the fund made and lost its money, but what it was about the personalities of Long-Term's partners, the arrogance of their mathematical certainties, and the late-nineties culture of Wall Street that made it all possible.
Douglas Adams - Mark Carwardine - Last Chance to See
"Very funny and moving...The glimpses of rare fauna seem to have enlarged [Adams'] thinking, enlivened his world; and so might the animals do for us all, if we were to help them live." THE WASHINGTON POST BOOK WORLD Join bestselling author Douglas Adams and zooligist Mark Carwardine as they take off around the world in search of exotic, endangered creatures. Hilarious and poignant--as only Douglas Adams can be--LAST CHANCE TO SEE is an entertaining and arresting odyssey through the Earth's magnificent wildlife galaxy.
Szerdahelyi István - Wintermantel Péter - Japanológiai körkép
1986 őszén az ELTE BTK Kínai és Kelet-Ázsiai Tanszék keretein belül - először a magyar felsőoktatás történetében - kezdetét vette a japán szakos bölcsészképzés. A szerzők jelen kötettel emléket kívánnak állítani az elmúlt húsz esztendő történetének. Ez idő alatt több száz hallgató hagyta el az egyetemet japán szakos diplomával a tarsolyában, és sokan közülük azóta is művelik a japanológia valamelyik ágát. Időközben más egyetemen is létesült japán szak, de oktatói gárdájának zöme szintén az ELTE japán szakának végzettje. A címválasztás - Japanológiai körkép - is jelezi, hogy a kötet a hazai japanológia minél teljesebb spektrumát be kívánja mutatni. A több tudományterületet is felölelő tanulmánykötet méltón reprezentálja a Magyarországon folyó, illetve magyar kutatók által külföldi egyetemeken végzett Japán tárgyú kutatásokat. A japán szak fennállása húsz éves jubileumának megünneplésére kiváló alkalmat teremt egy olyan tudományos emlékkönyv összeállítása, mely átfogóan bemutatja a magyarországi Japán-kutatás történetét, eredményeit és jelenét. A kötet összeállítása során a szerzők arra törekedtek, hogy az ELTE BTK japán szakának egykori és jelenlegi oktatói, előadói, valamint hajdani és mostani diákjai mellett helyet kapjanak a kötetben azok a pályatársak is, akik az elmúlt évtizedekben a társműhelyek valamelyikében (Külkereskedelmi Főiskola, Károli Gáspár Református Egyetem japán szaka, MTA Világgazdasági Kutatóintézet, Teleki László Alapítvány) fáradoztak a magyarországi japanológia helyzetének fellendítésén is.
Richard Horne - Tracey Turner - 101 Things You Need To Know... And Some You Don't!
Discover 101 of the most fascinating, most disgusting, and most unbelievable facts. Make your friends jealous with your increased knowledge and amaze people with your ability to answer almost impossible questions! Why is the sky blue? How do birds stand on electric wires without being electrocuted? Could I spontaneously combust at any moment?
Oriah Mountain Dreamer - The invitation
One night, after an unsatisfying evening at a party, Oriah Mountain Dreamer sat down and wrote her heartfelt poem 'The Invitation.' It begins, 'It doesn't interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing...' Profound and passionate, the poem travelled by word-of-mouth and the internet across the globe to be read at weddings, funerals and spiritual gatherings. In this practical and inspiring book, the author expands on the ideas behind the poem and has created a guidebook for living a life full of integrity, commitment and passion.
Steven M. Goodman - Jonathan P. Benstead - The Natural History of Madagascar
Separated from the mainland of Africa fro 160 million years, Madagascar offers an incredible wealth of biodiversity, with thousands of species that can be found nowhere else on earth. The Natural History of Madagascar provides the most comprehensive, up-to-date synthesis available of this island nation's priceless biological treasures. Contributions by nearly three hundred experts from around the world cover the history of scientific exploration in Madagascar, its geology, climate, forest and human ecology, as well as marine and coastal ecosystems. Detailed discussions of conservation efforts also highlight several successful reserve programs that could serve as models for other areas. With over one hundred color illustrations and fifty color photos by nature photographer Harald Schütz, The Natural History of Madagascar is an invaluable reference for anyone interested in the Malagasy environment.
David Bellamy - David Bellamy's Complete Guide to Watercolour Painting
Containing more than 300 step-by-step photographs, tips, instructions, and finished paintings, this complete guide provides a comprehensive introduction to watercolor and serves as an essential addition to the reference library of any artist. For those seeking to brush up on their skills or learn new ways of applying traditional techniques, this master class on atmosphere and mood, taught by renowned instructor David Bellamy, includes many excellent demonstrations and instructions on how to paint mountains and crags, rivers, hedgerows, flowers, beaches, harbors, and figures. With surprisingly simple techniques regarding composition, perspective, color, texture, and detail, this is a must-have resource for aspiring and experienced artists alike.
Henry David Thoreau - Walden (angol)
Walden (first published as Walden; or, Life in the Woods) by Henry David Thoreau is one of the best-known non-fiction books written by an American. Published in 1854, it details Thoreau's sojourn in a cabin near Walden Pond, amidst woodland owned by his friend and mentor Ralph Waldo Emerson, near Concord, Massachusetts. Thoreau lived at Walden for two years, two months, and two days, but Walden was written so that the stay appears to be a year, with expressed seasonal divisions. Thoreau did not intend to live as a hermit, for he received visitors and returned their visits. Instead, he hoped to isolate himself from society in order to gain a more objective understanding of it. Simplicity and self-reliance were Thoreau's other goals, and the whole project was inspired by transcendentalist philosophy. As Thoreau made clear in the book, his cabin was not in wilderness but at the edge of town, not far from his family home.
Ransom Riggs - Talking Pictures
With the candid quirkiness of "Awkward Family Photos "and the confessional intimacy of "PostSecret," Ransom Riggs's "Talking Pictures "is a haunting collection of antique found photographs--with evocative inscriptions that bring these lost personal moments to life--from the author of the "New York Times "bestselling illustrated novel "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children." Each image in "Talking Pictures" reveals a singular, frozen moment in a person's life, be it joyful, quiet, or steeped in sorrow. Yet the book's unique depth comes from the writing accompanying each photo: as with the caption revealing how one seemingly random snapshot of a dancing couple captured the first dance of their 40-year marriage, each successive inscription shines like a flashbulb illuminating a photograph's particular context and lighting up our connection to the past.
Alison Weir - Elizabeth the Queen
In her highly praised The Six Wives of Henry VIII and its sequel, Children of England, Alison Weir examined the private lives of the early Tudor kings and queens, and chronicled the childhood and youth of Elizabeth I. This book begins as the young Elizabeth ascends the throne in the wake of her sister Mary’s disastrous reign. Elizabeth is portrayed as both a woman and a queen, an extraordinary phenomenon in a patriarchal age. Alison Weir writes of Elizabeth’s intriguing, long-standing affair with Robert Dudley, Earl of Leicester; of her dealings — sometimes comical, sometimes poignant — with her many suitors; of her rivalry with Mary, Queen of Scots; and of her bizarre relationship with the Earl of Essex, thirty years her junior. Rich in detail, vivid and colourful, this book comes as close as we shall ever get to knowing what Elizabeth I was like as a person.
Barnaby Newbolt - Climate Change (Oxford Bookworms)
It's a terrible problem - or it's really not as bad as people say. There will be sudden big changes - or slower changes that we can learn to live with. It means the end for many animals, people, even whole islands - but will this happen soon, or hundreds of years from now? What is the true story about climate change? Why is it happening, and what can we do about it? If we learn about the past, then perhaps there will be time to make changes for the future...
Alison Weir - Britain's Royal Families
Britain’s Royal Families is a unique reference book, offering complete genealogical details in one volume describing all the members of the royal houses of England, Scotland, and Great Britain, from 800 AD to the present. Look no further for vital information relating to each monarch, and to every member of their immediate family, from parents to grandchildren. When documents (which would have thrown the whole royal succession into question) describing George III’s secret marriage to Quakeress, Hannah Lightfoot, were seized in 1866 by the Attorney General, then-current learned opinion believed they were genuine. But they were placed into the Royal Archives at Windsor, and as late as 1910 the palace refused a would-be author who asked to see them. This is just one fascinating story of many in this delightful book. Drawing on countless authorities, both ancient and contemporary, Alison Weir explores the royal family tree in unparalleled depth, tracing the heritage of today’s royal family.
Paul Lieberman - Gangster Squad
A harrowing, edge-of-your-seat narrative of murder and secrets, revenge and heroism in the City of Angels—the real events behind the blockbuster Warner Brothers film starring Sean Penn, Josh Brolin, Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone. GANGSTER SQUAD chronicles the true story of the secretive police unit that waged an anything-goes war to drive Mickey Cohen and other hoodlums from Los Angeles after WWII. In 1946, the LAPD launched the Gangster Squad with eight men who met covertly on street corners and slept with Tommy guns under their beds. But for two cops, all that mattered was nailing the strutting gangster Mickey Cohen. Sgt. Jack O’Mara was a square-jawed church usher, Sgt. Jerry Wooters a cynical maverick. About all they had in common was their obsession. So O’Mara set a trap to prove Mickey was a killer. And Wooters formed an alliance with Mickey’s budding rival, Jack “The Enforcer” Whalen. Two cops -- two hoodlums. Their fates collided in the closing days of the 1950s, when late one night “The Enforcer” confronted Mickey and his crew. The aftermath would shake both LA’s mob and police department, and signal the end of a defining era in the city’s history. Warner Brothers developed the film _Gangster Squad_ based on the research award-winning journalist Paul Lieberman conducted for this book, which reveals the unbelievable true stories behind the film. He spent more than a decade tracking down and interviewing surviving members of the real police unit as well as families and associates of the mobsters they pursued. Gangster Squad is a tour-de-force narrative reminiscent of LA Confidential.
Gary Gach - The Complete Idiot's Guide to Buddhism
The latest edition of The Complete Idiot's Guide(r) to Buddhism updates one of Alpha Books's most successful books in the religion/spirituality category, providing extensive information on both understanding the teachings and schools of Buddhism and incorporating the tenets of Buddhism into everyday life. It also includes additional information on Buddhism's effect on popular arts and sciences, the continuing relevance of the Dalai Lama, and an annotated bibliography. • With Buddhism as one of America's fastest growing religions, the audience continues to renew itself • Covers all four schools of Buddhism: Zen, Tibetan, Pure Land, and Insight Meditation, which are not in competitors' books • For thousands of years, Buddhism has been a source of inner peace and security for millions
Richard Platt - Would You Believe...the losers were killed in Mayan football? - and other perilous pastimes
A fascinating journey into the evolution of things in our everyday lives; this book looks at the outlandish history of sport and leisure around the world Young learners can discover the story behind the games we play like never before as we examine the amazing peculiarities of international sport and leisure activities past and present. Readers will learn about the wacky and often bloodthirsty games that our ancestors liked such as fierce gladiatorial contests, as well as the even wackier that are still used around the world today - such as bog snorkelling and bungee jumping!
Robert Moss - The Secret History of Dreaming
Dreaming is vital to the human story. It is essential to our survival and evolution, to creative endeavors in every field, and, quite simply, to getting us through our daily lives. All of us dream. Now Robert Moss shows us how dreams have shaped world events and why deepening our conscious engagement with dreaming is crucial for our future. He traces the strands of dreams through archival records and well-known writings, weaving remarkable yet true accounts of historical figures who were influenced by their dreams. In this wide-ranging, visionary book, Moss creates a new way to explore history and consciousness, combining the storytelling skills of a bestselling novelist with the research acumen of a scholar of ancient history and the personal experience of an active dreamer.
Alex Frith - Rachel Firth - Struan Reid - Abigail Wheatley - Prehistoric Britain
From the age of dinosaurs to the Roman invasion, this book tells the story of this vast and exciting period. Find out when and how people first came to Britain, discover the secrects of making bronze and iron, and explore the mistery of Stonehenge.