Bill Bryson describes himself as a reluctant traveller, but even when he stays at home he can’t contain his curiosity about the world around him. A Short History of Nearly Everything is his quest to understand everything that has happened from the Big Bang to the rise of civilization — how we got from there, being nothing at all, to here, being us. The ultimate eye-opening journey through time and space, revealing the world in a way most of us have never seen it before.
Bill Bryson - In a Sunburned Country
Every time Bill Bryson walks out the door, memorable travel literature threatens to break out. His previous excursion along the Appalachian Trail resulted in the sublime national bestseller A Walk in the Woods. In A Sunburned Country is his report on what he found in an entirely different place: Australia, the country that doubles as a continent, and a place with the friendliest inhabitants, the hottest, driest weather, and the most peculiar and lethal wildlife to be found on the planet. The result is a deliciously funny, fact-filled, and adventurous performance by a writer who combines humor, wonder, and unflagging curiousity. Despite the fact that Australia harbors more things that can kill you in extremely nasty ways than anywhere else, including sharks, crocodiles, snakes, even riptides and deserts, Bill Bryson adores the place, and he takes his readers on a rollicking ride far beyond that beaten tourist path. Wherever he goes he finds Australians who are cheerful, extroverted, and unfailingly obliging, and these beaming products of land with clean, safe cities, cold beer, and constant sunshine fill the pages of this wonderful book. Australia is an immense and fortunate land, and it has found in Bill Bryson its perfect guide.
Bill Bryson - Bryson's Dictionary of Troublesome Words
One of the English language’s most skilled and beloved writers guides us all toward precise, mistake-free usage. As usual Bill Bryson says it best: “English is a dazzlingly idiosyncratic tongue, full of quirks and irregularities that often seem willfully at odds with logic and common sense. This is a language where ‘cleave’ can mean to cut in half or to hold two halves together; where the simple word ‘set’ has 126 different meanings as a verb, 58 as a noun, and 10 as a participial adjective; where if you can run fast you are moving swiftly, but if you are stuck fast you are not moving at all; [and] where ‘colonel,’ ‘freight,’ ‘once,’ and ‘ache’ are strikingly at odds with their spellings.” As a copy editor for the London Times in the early 1980s, Bill Bryson felt keenly the lack of an easy-to-consult, authoritative guide to avoiding the traps and snares in English, and so he brashly suggested to a publisher that he should write one. Surprisingly, the proposition was accepted, and for “a sum of money carefully gauged not to cause embarrassment or feelings of overworth,” he proceeded to write that book–his first, inaugurating his stellar career. Now, a decade and a half later, revised, updated, and thoroughly (but not overly) Americanized, it has become Bryson’s Dictionary of Troublesome Words, more than ever an essential guide to the wonderfully disordered thing that is the English language. With some one thousand entries, from “a, an” to “zoom,” that feature real-world examples of questionable usage from an international array of publications, and with a helpful glossary and guide to pronunciation, this precise, prescriptive, and–because it is written by Bill Bryson–often witty book belongs on the desk of every person who cares enough about the language not to maul or misuse or distort it.
The Oatmeal - How to Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You
TheOatmeal.com’s most popular cat jokes, including “How to Pet a Kitty” and “The Bobcats,” plus 15 new and never-before-seen catthemed comics, are presented in this hilarious collection from New York Times best-selling author Matthew Inman, a.k.a. TheOatmeal.com. Includes pull-out poster! Jesus Rollerblading Christ--another helping of TheOatmeal! Mrow, MOAR kitty comics. Mr. Oats delivers a sidesplitting serving of cat comics in his new book, How to Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You. If your cat is kneading you, that's not a sign of affection. Your cat is actually checking your internal organs for weakness. If your cat brings you a dead animal, this isn't a gift. It's a warning. How to Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You is a hilarious, brilliant offering of cat comics, facts, and instructional guides from the creative wonderland at TheOatmeal.com. How to Tell If Your Cat Is Plotting to Kill You presents fan favorites, such as "Cat vs. Internet," "How to Pet a Kitty," and "The Bobcats," plus 17 brand-new, never-before-seen cat jokes. This Oatmeal collection is a must-have from Mr. Oats! A pullout poster is included at the back of the book.
Douglas Adams - The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul
When a passenger check-in desk at Terminal Two, Heathrow Airport, shot up through the roof engulfed in a ball of orange flame the usual people tried to claim responsibility. First the IRA, then the PLO and the Gas Board. Even British Nuclear Fuels rushed out a statement to the effect that the situation was completely under control, that it was a one in a million chance, that there was hardly any radioactive leakage at all and that the site of the explosion would make a nice location for a day out with the kids and a picnic, before finally having to admit that it wasn't actually anything to do with them at all. No rational cause could be found for the explosion - it was simply designated an act of God. But, thinks Dirk Gently, which God? And why? What God would be hanging around Terminal Two of Heathrow Airport trying to catch the 15.37 to Oslo? Funnier than _Psycho_... more chilling than _Jeeves Takes Charge_... shorter than _War and Peace_... the new Dirk Gently novel, _The Long Dark Tea-Time of the Soul_.
Carl Sagan - Broca's Brain
Carl Sagan, writer and scientist, returns from the frontier to tell us about how the world works. In his delightfully down-to-earth style, he explores and explains a mind-boggling future of intelligent robots, extraterrestrial life and its consquences, and other provocative, fascinating quandries of the future that we want to see today.
Douglas Adams - So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish
There is a knack to flying. The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss. It's not an easy thing to do and Arthur Dent thinks he's the only human who's been able to master this nifty little trick - until he meets Fenchurch, the girl of his dreams. Fenchurch knows how the world could be made a good and happy place. Unfortunately she's forgotten. Convinced that the secret lies within God's Final Message to His Creation they go in search of it. And in a dramatic break with tradition - actually find it...
Douglas Adams - Life, the Universe and Everything
Join Arthur Dent, earthling, "jerk", kneebiter and time-traveler; sexy space cadet Trillian; mad alien Ford Prefect; unflappable Slartibartfast; two-headed, three-armed ex-head Honcho of the Universe Zaphod Beeblebrox... and learn to fly. Is it the end? With Douglas Adams it's always up in the air!
Karl Pilkington - Karlology
Karl Pilkington's third book, follow-up to bestselling The World of Karl Pilkington and Happyslapped by a Jellyfish, is a voyage through some of the most curious facts and fictions about our world. Drawing on what little he learned during his days of education, Karl explores the world of knowledge through a school curriculum, with chapters devoted to biology, history, art, and English, among others, each topic approached with Karl's inimitable combination of innocent wonder and down-to-earth wisdom. Full color throughout, the book is illustrated with Karl's hand-drawn cartoons and comic strips and it features e-mail contributions from a host of celebrities and experts who Karl has quizzed to further his knowledge.
Karl Pilkington - Happyslapped by a Jellyfish
A collection of hilarious and compelling insights and anecdotes, diary entries, poems, 'true' facts and cartoons on travel from Karl Pilkington, unlikely star of the Ricky Gervais Show, the world's most successful podcast - now in paperback. This is the travel book for people who don't particularly like travelling, it's Karl Pilkington, star of The Ricky Gervais Podcast Show, with a suitcase, occasionally with his passport, more often with a bemused suspicion of anything vaguely exotic, and an observant eye for the disappointments, tedium, general weirdness and absurdities of being a tourist abroad and at home.From staring at Mount Vesuvius in case it erupts and the horrors of a Lanzarote nudist beach to the curiosities to be seen in the world's weirdest museum. Told with his inimitable deadpan humour, Pilkington's stories are interspersed with fond reflections on life back in England, from Salford joy riders to what his girlfriend's mum and dad have for dinner on a Thursday (it's chops and veg. in case you're wondering).
Karl Pilkington - An Idiot Abroad
Karl Pilkington isn't keen on travelling. Given the choice, he'll go on holiday to Devon or Wales or, at a push, eat English food on a package holiday in Majorca. Which isn't exactly Michael Palin, is it? So what happened when he was convinced by Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant to go on an epic adventure to see the Seven Wonders of the World? Travel broadens the mind, right? You'd think so...Find out in Karl Pilkington's hilarious travel diaries.
Karl Pilkington - Ricky Gervais - Stephen Merchant - The World of Karl Pilkington
A collection of the best moments from the 'Ricky Gervais Show' podcasts -- the world's number one podcast -- with additional musings and original drawings by Karl Pilkington, the show's unlikely star. Karl Pilkington, the Confucian like savant of the Ricky Gervais Podcast show, has led an extraordinary and curiously individual life. As a kid growing up in Manchester he regularly missed school to accompany his parents on caravanning holidays and left without collecting his exam results: his family weaned him well. His father once crashed a train into Manchester Central Station, his mother shaved one of their cats after it kept being sick and his uncle slept in a dinghy instead of a bed -- genes, some acolytes say, which have contributed to his cryptic views on life. Pilkington's is a brilliant mind, locked inside a perfectly round head, and uncluttered by the unhelpful constraints of logic or common sense; factors that have lead him to such dazzling insights as 'you never see old men eating Twix bars' or that the 'Diary of Anne Frank' was 'an Adrian Mole sort of thing'.In this pithy and hilarious book, Karl is in conversation with (the often bewildered) Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant, the writers and stars of 'The Office' and 'Extras', outwitting even these comedy Goliaths with his take on such contentious issues as charity, the lack of Chinese homeless people, reincarnation, the rights of monkeys and favourite superpowers. Featuring Karl's original illustrations, imaginative scribblings and the best conversations of the first twelve podcasts, this is a unique trip into the world of one of our most innovative thinkers, visionaries and prophets, or as Gervais and Merchant know him, 'the funniest man alive in Britain today'.
Douglas Adams - Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency
There is a long tradition of Great Detectives, and Dirk Gently does not belong to it. But his search for a missing cat uncovers a ghost, a time traveler, AND the devastating secret of humankind! Detective Gently's bill for saving the human race from extinction: NO CHARGE.
Rebecca Skloot - The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
Who, you might ask, is Henrietta Lacks (1920-1951) and why is she the subject of a book? On the surface, this short-lived African American Virginian seems an unlikely candidate for immortality. In truth, we all owe Ms. Lacks a great debt and some of us owe her our lives. As Rebecca Skloot tells us in this riveting human story, Henrietta was the involuntary donor of cells from her cancerous tumors that have been cultured to create an immortal cell line for medical research. These so-called HeLa cells have not only generated billions of dollars for the medical industry; they have helped uncover secrets of cancers, viruses, fertilization, cloning, and gene mapping. A vivid, exciting story; a 2010 Discover Great New Books finalist; a surprise bestseller in hardcover. Now in paperback and NOOKbook.
Marian Keyes - Under the Duvet
Few writers in a generation achieve the consistently extraordinary sales of a Maeve Binchy or Catherine Cookson. now there is a new name to add to the superstars of womens fiction - Marian Keyes. Critically acclaimed, her novels "Watermelon", "Lucy Sullivan is Getting Married", "Rachel's Holiday" and "Last Chance Saloon" have sold over the world in their millions. Setting the record straight about her life as a novelist (less glitz and glamour than sitting alone in a darkened bedroom with a laptop in front of her) Marian Keyes here presents a selection of her articles. These regular bulletins from a woman under the duvet include unpublished pieces.
Ismeretlen szerző - Icons of England
This celebration of the English countryside does not only focus on the rolling green landscapes and magnificent monuments that set England apart from the rest of the world. Many of the contributors bring their own special touch, presenting a refreshingly eclectic variety of personal icons, from pub signs to seaside piers, from cattle grids to canal boats, and from village cricket to nimbies. First published as a lavish colour coffeetable book, this new expanded paperback edition has double the original number of contributions from many celebrities including Bill Bryson, Michael Palin, Eric Clapton, Bryan Ferry, Sebastian Faulks, Kate Adie, Kevin Spacey, Gavin Pretor-Pinney, Richard Mabey , Simon Jenkins, John Sergeant, Benjamin Zephaniah, Joan Bakewell, Antony Beevor, Libby Purves, Jonathan Dimbleby, and many more: and a new preface by HRH Prince Charles.
Christopher Moore - Lamb
The birth of Jesus has been well chronicled, as have his glorious teachings, acts, and divine sacrifice after his thirtieth birthday. But no one knows about the early life of the Son of God, the missing years -- except Biff, the Messiahs best bud, who has been resurrected to tell the story in the divinely hilarious yet heartfelt work "reminiscent of Vonnegut and Douglas Adams" (Philadelphia Inquirer). Verily, the story Biff has to tell is a miraculous one, filled with remarkable journeys, magic, healings, kung fu, corpse reanimations, demons, and hot babes. Even the considerable wiles and devotion of the Saviors pal may not be enough to divert Joshua from his tragic destiny. But theres no one who loves Josh more -- except maybe "Maggie," Mary of Magdala -- and Biff isnt about to let his extraordinary pal suffer and ascend without a fight.
John Farman - The Very Bloody History of London
When a man is tired of London, he is tired of life... Samuel Johnson One of the world's most famous cities is sized up by John Farman, the author of the mega-bestselling title _The Very Bloody History of Britain_. London's history is brought to life by powerful storytelling, fact-packed pages and wildly funny interpretations of some of the city's well known and less-known historical landmarks. The ideal guide for discerning travellers of all ages who long to see and hear about something a bit different.
George Carlin - Brain Droppings
Brain Droppings is a 1997 book by comedian George Carlin. This was Carlin's "first real book" and contains much of Carlin's stand-up comedy material. According to the cover, the book contains "jokes, notions, doubts, opinions, questions, thoughts, beliefs, assertions, assumptions, and disturbing references" and "comedy, nonsense, satire, mockery, merriment, sarcasm, ridicule, silliness, bluster, and toxic alienation". For longtime Carlin fans, the book also contains complete versions of two of his famous monologues: "A Place for My Stuff" and "Baseball and Football", as well as the infamous Derek Sabo bit.
Douglas Adams - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
Seconds before the Earth is demolished to make way for a galactic freeway, Arthur Dent is plucked off the planet by his friend Ford Prefect, a researcher for the revised edition of the The Hitch Hiker's Guide to the Galaxy who, for the last fifteen years, has been posing as an out of work actor. Together this dynamic pair begin their journey through space aided by quotes from The Hitch Hiker's Guide "A towel is about the most massively useful thing an interstellar hitchhiker can have" and a galaxy-full of fellow travellers: Zaphod Beeblebrox - the two-headed, three-armed ex-hippie and totally out to lunch president of the galaxy; Trillian, Zaphod's girlfriend (formally Tricia McMillan), whom Arthur tried to pick up at a cocktail party once upon a time zone; Marvin, a paranoid, brilliant and chronically depressed robot; Veet Voojagig, a former graduate student who is obsessed with the disappearance of all the ball-point pens he has bought over the years.