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The Mosquito: A Human History of Our Deadliest Predator
by Timothy C. Winegard

Language

English

Pages

496

Publication Date

August 06, 2019

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>“Hugely impressive, a major work.”—<i>NPR<br /></i><br />A pioneering and groundbreaking work of narrative nonfiction that offers a dramatic new perspective on the history of humankind, showing how through millennia, the mosquito has been the single most powerful force in determining humanity’s fate.</b><br />  <br /> Why was gin and tonic the cocktail of choice for British colonists in India and Africa? What does Starbucks have to thank for its global domination? What has protected the lives of popes for millennia? Why did Scotland surrender its sovereignty to England? What was George Washington's secret weapon during the American Revolution? <br /><br /> The answer to all these questions, and many more, is the mosquito.<br />  <br /> Across our planet since the dawn of humankind, this nefarious pest, roughly the size and weight of a grape seed, has been at the frontlines of history as the grim reaper, the harvester of human populations, and the ultimate agent of historical change. As the mosquito transformed the landscapes of civilization, humans were unwittingly required to respond to its piercing impact and universal projection of power.<br />  <br /> The mosquito has determined the fates of empires and nations, razed and crippled economies, and decided the outcome of pivotal wars, killing nearly half of humanity along the way. She (only females bite) has dispatched an estimated 52 billion people from a total of 108 billion throughout our relatively brief existence. As the greatest purveyor of extermination we have ever known, she has played a greater role in shaping our human story than any other living thing with which we share our global village.<br />  <br /> Imagine for a moment a world without deadly mosquitoes, or any mosquitoes, for that matter? Our history and the world we know, or think we know, would be completely unrecognizable.<br />  <br /> Driven by surprising insights and fast-paced storytelling, <i>The Mosquito</i> is the extraordinary untold story of the mosquito’s reign through human history and her indelible impact on our modern world order.
The Dragons of Eden: Speculations on the Evolution of Human Intel...
by Carl Sagan

Language

English

Pages

289

Publication Date

September 26, 2012

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>“A history of the human brain from the big bang, fifteen billion years ago, to the day before yesterday . . . It's a delight.”—<i>The New York Times</i></b><br /><br />Dr. Carl Sagan takes us on a great reading adventure, offering his vivid and startling insight into the brain of man and beast, the origin of human intelligence, the function of our most haunting legends—and their amazing links to recent discoveries. <br /><br /><b>“How can I persuade every intelligent person to read this important and elegant book? . . . He talks about all kinds of things: the why of the pain of human childbirth . . . the reason for sleeping and dreaming . . . chimpanzees taught to communicate in deaf and dumb language . . . the definition of death . . . cloning . . . computers . . . intelligent life on other planets. . . . Fascinating . . . delightful.”—<i>The Boston Globe<br /></i></b><br /><b>“In some lost Eden where dragons ruled, the foundations of our intelligence were laid. . . . Carl Sagan takes us on a guided tour of that lost land. . . . Fascinating . . . entertaining . . . masterful.”—<i>St. Louis Post-Dispatch</i></b>
Lab Girl
by Hope Jahren

Language

English

Pages

306

Publication Date

April 05, 2016

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Customer Reviews
<b>National Bestseller<br /><br />“A beautifully written memoir about the life of a woman in science, a brilliant friendship, and the profundity of trees. Terrific.”—Barack Obama<br /><br /><b> <b><b>Winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award for Autobiography</b><br /><br />A <i>New York Times</i> Notable Book</b></b><br /><br /></b>Geobiologist Hope Jahren has spent her life studying trees, flowers, seeds, and soil.<i> Lab Girl </i>is her revelatory treatise on plant life—but it is also a celebration of the lifelong curiosity, humility, and passion that drive every scientist. In these pages, Hope takes us back to her Minnesota childhood, where she spent hours in unfettered play in her father’s college laboratory. She tells us how she found a sanctuary in science, learning to perform lab work “with both the heart and the hands.” She introduces us to Bill, her brilliant, eccentric lab manager. And she extends the mantle of <i>scientist </i>to each one of her readers, inviting us to join her in observing and protecting our environment. Warm, luminous, compulsively readable, <i>Lab Girl</i> vividly demonstrates the mountains that we can move when love and work come together. <br /><b><b><br /> <br />Winner of the American Association for the Advancement of Science/Subaru <i>Science Books & Film</i> Prize for Excellence in Science Books <br /><br />Finalist for the <b>PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award</b> <br /><br />One of the Best Books of the Year: <i>The Washington Post</i>, TIME.com, NPR, <i>Slate</i>, <i>Entertainment Weekly</i>, <i>Newsday</i>, <i>Minneapolis Star Tribune, Kirkus Reviews</i></b></b>
The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming
by David Wallace-Wells

Language

English

Pages

304

Publication Date

February 19, 2019

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b>#1 <i>NEW YORK TIMES</i> BESTSELLER • “<i>The Uninhabitable Earth</i> hits you like a comet, with an overflow of insanely lyrical prose about our pending Armageddon.”—Andrew Solomon, author of <i>The Noonday Demon</i></b><br /><br />It is worse, much worse, than you think. If your anxiety about global warming is dominated by fears of sea-level rise, you are barely scratching the surface of what terrors are possible. In California, wildfires now rage year-round, destroying thousands of homes. Across the US, “500-year” storms pummel communities month after month, and floods displace tens of millions annually. <br /><br />This is only a preview of the changes to come. And they are coming fast. Without a revolution in how billions of humans conduct their lives, parts of the Earth could become close to uninhabitable, and other parts horrifically inhospitable, as soon as the end of this century.<br /><br /> In his travelogue of our near future, David Wallace-Wells brings into stark relief the climate troubles that await—food shortages, refugee emergencies, and other crises that will reshape the globe. But the world will be remade by warming in more profound ways as well, transforming our politics, our culture, our relationship to technology, and our sense of history. It will be all-encompassing, shaping and distorting nearly every aspect of human life as it is lived today.<br /><br />Like <i>An Inconvenient Truth</i> and <i>Silent Spring</i> before it, <i>The Uninhabitable Earth</i> is both a meditation on the devastation we have brought upon ourselves and an impassioned call to action. For just as the world was brought to the brink of catastrophe within the span of a lifetime, the responsibility to avoid it now belongs to a single generation.<br /><br /><b>Praise for <i>The Uninhabitable Earth</i></b><br /><br /><i>“The Uninhabitable Earth</i> is the most terrifying book I have ever read. Its subject is climate change, and its method is scientific, but its mode is Old Testament. The book is a meticulously documented, white-knuckled tour through the cascading catastrophes that will soon engulf our warming planet.”<b>—Farhad Manjoo, The New York Times</b><i><b><br /></b></i><br />“Riveting. . . . Some readers will find Mr. Wallace-Wells’s outline of possible futures alarmist. He is indeed alarmed. You should be, too.”<b>—<i>The Economist</i></b>
The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
by Elizabeth Kolbert

Language

English

Pages

336

Publication Date

February 11, 2014

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><b>ONE OF THE <i>NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW'S</i> 10 BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR</b></p><p><b>A major book about the future of the world, blending intellectual and natural history and field reporting into a powerful account of the mass extinction unfolding before our eyes</b> <br />Over the last half a billion years, there have been five mass extinctions, when the diversity of life on earth suddenly and dramatically contracted. Scientists around the world are currently monitoring the sixth extinction, predicted to be the most devastating extinction event since the asteroid impact that wiped out the dinosaurs. This time around, the cataclysm is us. In <i>The Sixth Extinction</i>, two-time winner of the National Magazine Award and <i>New Yorker</i> writer Elizabeth Kolbert draws on the work of scores of researchers in half a dozen disciplines, accompanying many of them into the field: geologists who study deep ocean cores, botanists who follow the tree line as it climbs up the Andes, marine biologists who dive off the Great Barrier Reef. She introduces us to a dozen species, some already gone, others facing extinction, including the Panamian golden frog, staghorn coral, the great auk, and the Sumatran rhino. Through these stories, Kolbert provides a moving account of the disappearances occurring all around us and traces the evolution of extinction as concept, from its first articulation by Georges Cuvier in revolutionary Paris up through the present day. The sixth extinction is likely to be mankind's most lasting legacy; as Kolbert observes, it compels us to rethink the fundamental question of what it means to be human.</p>
Underland: A Deep Time Journey
by Robert Macfarlane

Language

English

Pages

496

Publication Date

June 04, 2019

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><strong>National Bestseller<br /><br /><br /><br />From the best-selling, award-winning author of <em>Landmarks</em> and <em>The Old Ways</em>, a haunting voyage into the planet’s past and future.</strong></p><br /><p>Hailed as "the great nature writer of this generation" (<em>Wall Street Journal</em>), Robert Macfarlane is the celebrated author of books about the intersections of the human and the natural realms. In <em>Underland</em>, he delivers his masterpiece: an epic exploration of the Earth’s underworlds as they exist in myth, literature, memory, and the land itself.</p><br /><p>In this highly anticipated sequel to his international bestseller <em>The Old Ways</em>, Macfarlane takes us on an extraordinary journey into our relationship with darkness, burial, and what lies beneath the surface of both place and mind. Traveling through “deep time”—the dizzying expanses of geologic time that stretch away from the present—he moves from the birth of the universe to a post-human future, from the prehistoric art of Norwegian sea caves to the blue depths of the Greenland ice cap, from Bronze Age funeral chambers to the catacomb labyrinth below Paris, and from the underground fungal networks through which trees communicate to a deep-sunk “hiding place” where nuclear waste will be stored for 100,000 years to come. Woven through Macfarlane’s own travels are the unforgettable stories of descents into the underland made across history by explorers, artists, cavers, divers, mourners, dreamers, and murderers, all of whom have been drawn for different reasons to seek what Cormac McCarthy calls “the awful darkness within the world.”</p><br /><p>Global in its geography and written with great lyricism and power, <em>Underland</em> speaks powerfully to our present moment. Taking a deep-time view of our planet, Macfarlane here asks a vital and unsettling question: “Are we being good ancestors to the future Earth?” <em>Underland</em> marks a new turn in Macfarlane’s long-term mapping of the relations of landscape and the human heart. From its remarkable opening pages to its deeply moving conclusion, it is a journey into wonder, loss, fear, and hope. At once ancient and urgent, this is a book that will change the way you see the world.</p>
What the Eyes Don't See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope ...
by Mona Hanna-Attisha

Language

English

Pages

352

Publication Date

June 19, 2018

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<b><b>A <i>NEW YORK TIMES </i>NOTABLE BOOK • </b>The dramatic story of the Flint water crisis, by a relentless physician who stood up to power.</b><br /><br /><b>“Stirring . . . [a] blueprint for all those who believe . . . that ‘the world . . . should be full of people raising their voices.’”—<i>The New York Times</i></b><br /><br /><b>“Revealing, with the gripping intrigue of a Grisham thriller.” —<i>O: The Oprah Magazine</i></b><br /><br /> Here is the inspiring story of how Dr. Mona Hanna-Attisha, alongside a team of researchers, parents, friends, and community leaders, discovered that the children of Flint, Michigan, were being exposed to lead in their tap water—and then battled her own government and a brutal backlash to expose that truth to the world. Paced like a scientific thriller, <i>What the Eyes Don’t See </i>reveals how misguided austerity policies, broken democracy, and callous bureaucratic indifference placed an entire city at risk. And at the center of the story is Dr. Mona herself—an immigrant, doctor, scientist, and mother whose family’s activist roots inspired her pursuit of justice.<br /><br /> <i>What the Eyes Don’t See</i> is a riveting account of a shameful disaster that became a tale of hope, the story of a city on the ropes that came together to fight for justice, self-determination, and the right to build a better world for their—and all of our—children.<br /><br /><b>Praise for <i>What the Eyes Don’t See</i></b><br /><br />“It is one thing to point out a problem. It is another thing altogether to step up and work to fix it. Mona Hanna-Attisha is a true American hero.”<b>—Erin Brockovich </b><br /><br />“A clarion call to live a life of purpose.”<b>—<i>The Washington Post</i></b><br /><br />“Gripping . . . entertaining . . . Her book has power precisely because she takes the events she recounts so personally. . . . Moral outrage present on every page.”<b>—<i>The New York Times Book Review</i></b><br /><br />“Personal and emotional. . . She vividly describes the effects of lead poisoning on her young patients. . . . She is at her best when recounting the detective work she undertook after a tip-off about lead levels from a friend. . . . ‛Flint will not be defined by this crisis,’ vows Ms. Hanna-Attisha.”<b>—<i>The Economist</i></b><br /><br />“Flint is a public health disaster. But it was Dr. Mona, this caring, tough pediatrican turned detective, who cracked the case.”<b>—Rachel Maddow</b>
Isaac's Storm: A Man, a Time, and the Deadliest Hurricane in Hist...
by Erik Larson

Language

English

Pages

338

Publication Date

October 19, 2011

Product Description
Customer Reviews
At the dawn of the twentieth century, a great confidence suffused America. Isaac Cline was one of the era's new men, a scientist who believed he knew all there was to know about the motion of clouds and the behavior of storms. The idea that a hurricane could damage the city of Galveston, Texas, where he was based, was to him preposterous, "an absurd delusion." It was 1900, a year when America felt bigger and stronger than ever before. Nothing in nature could hobble the gleaming city of Galveston, then a magical place that seemed destined to become the New York of the Gulf.<br /><br />That August, a strange, prolonged heat wave gripped the nation and killed scores of people in New York and Chicago. Odd things seemed to happen everywhere: A plague of crickets engulfed Waco. The Bering Glacier began to shrink. Rain fell on Galveston with greater intensity than anyone could remember. Far away, in Africa, immense thunderstorms blossomed over the city of Dakar, and great currents of wind converged. A wave of atmospheric turbulence slipped from the coast of western Africa. Most such waves faded quickly. This one did not.<br /><br />In Cuba, America's overconfidence was made all too obvious by the Weather Bureau's obsession with controlling hurricane forecasts, even though Cuba's indigenous weathermen had pioneered hurricane science. As the bureau's forecasters assured the nation that all was calm in the Caribbean, Cuba's own weathermen fretted about ominous signs in the sky. A curious stillness gripped Antigua. Only a few unlucky sea captains discovered that the storm had achieved an intensity no man alive had ever experienced.<br /><br />In Galveston, reassured by Cline's belief that no hurricane could seriously damage the city, there was celebration. Children played in the rising water. Hundreds of people gathered at the beach to marvel at the fantastically tall waves and gorgeous pink sky, until the surf began ripping the city's beloved beachfront apart. Within the next few hours Galveston would endure a hurricane that to this day remains the nation's deadliest natural disaster. In Galveston alone at least 6,000 people, possibly as many as 10,000, would lose their lives, a number far greater than the combined death toll of the Johnstown Flood and 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.<br /><br />And Isaac Cline would experience his own unbearable loss.<br /><br />Meticulously researched and vividly written, <b>Isaac's Storm</b> is based on Cline's own letters, telegrams, and reports, the testimony of scores of survivors, and our latest understanding of the hows and whys of great storms. Ultimately, however, it is the story of what can happen when human arrogance meets nature's last great uncontrollable force. As such, <b>Isaac's Storm</b> carries a warning for our time.
Salt: A World History
by Mark Kurlansky

Language

English

Pages

494

Publication Date

January 28, 2003

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><b>An unlikely world history from the bestselling author of <i>Cod </i> and <i>The Basque History of the World<br /><br /></i></b>In his fifth work of nonfiction, Mark Kurlansky turns his attention to a common household item with a long and intriguing history: salt. The only rock we eat, salt has shaped civilization from the very beginning, and its story is a glittering, often surprising part of the history of humankind. A substance so valuable it served as currency, salt has influenced the establishment of trade routes and cities, provoked and financed wars, secured empires, and inspired revolutions.  Populated by colorful characters and filled with an unending series of fascinating details, <b><i>Salt</i> </b>is a supremely entertaining, multi-layered masterpiece.</p>
Falter: Has the Human Game Begun to Play Itself Out?
by Bill McKibben

Language

English

Pages

291

Publication Date

April 16, 2019

Product Description
Customer Reviews
<p><b>Thirty years ago Bill McKibben offered one of the earliest warnings about climate change. Now he broadens the warning: the entire human game, he suggests, has begun to play itself out.</b></p><p>Bill McKibben’s groundbreaking book <i>The End of Nature -- </i>issued in dozens of languages and long regarded as a classic -- was the first book to alert us to global warming. But the danger is broader than that: even as climate change shrinks the space where our civilization can exist, new technologies like artificial intelligence and robotics threaten to bleach away the variety of human experience. </p><p><i>Falter </i>tells the story of these converging trends and of the ideological fervor that keeps us from bringing them under control. And then, drawing on McKibben’s experience in building 350.org, the first truly global citizens movement to combat climate change, it offers some possible ways out of the trap. We’re at a bleak moment in human history -- and we’ll either confront that bleakness or watch the civilization our forebears built slip away.<br /><i></i><br /><i>Falter</i> is a powerful and sobering call to arms, to save not only our planet but also our humanity.</p>

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