The Genius of Birds
By Jennifer Ackerman
Birds are astonishingly intelligent creatures. In fact, according to revolutionary new research, some birds rival primates and even humans in their remarkable forms of intelligence. Like humans, many birds have enormous brains relative to their size. Although small, bird brains are packed with neurons that allow them to punch well above their weight.In The Genius of Birds, acclaimed author Jennifer Ackerman explores the newly discovered brilliance of birds and how it came about. As she travels around the world to the most cutting-edge frontiers of research - the distant laboratories of Barbados and New Caledonia, the great tit communities of the United Kingdom and the bowerbird habitats of Australia, the ravaged mid-Atlantic coast after Hurricane Sandy and the warming mountains of central Virginia and the western states - Ackerman not only tells the story of the recently uncovered genius of birds but also delves deeply into the latest findings about the bird brain itself that are revolutionizing our view of what it means to be intelligent.Consider, as Ackerman does, the Clark's nutcracker, a bird that can hide as many as 30,000 seeds over dozens of square miles and remember where it put them several months later; the mockingbirds and thrashers, species that can store 200 to 2,000 different songs in a brain a thousand times smaller than ours; the well-known pigeon, which knows where it's going, even thousands of miles from familiar territory; and the New Caledonian crow, an impressive bird that makes its own tools.But beyond highlighting how birds use their unique genius in technical ways, Ackerman points out the impressive social smarts of birds. They deceive and manipulate. They eavesdrop. They display a strong sense of fairness. They give gifts. They play keep-away and tug-of-war. They tease. They share. They cultivate social networks. They vie for status. They kiss to console one another. They teach their young. They blackmail their parents. They alert one another to danger. They summon witnesses to the death of a peer. They may even grieve.This elegant scientific investigation and travelogue weaves personal anecdotes with fascinating science. Ackerman delivers an extraordinary story that will both give readers a new appreciation for the exceptional talents of birds and let them discover what birds can reveal about our changing world.
The Goddess Pose
By Michelle Goldberg
When the woman who would become Indra Devi was born in Russia in 1899, yoga was virtually unknown outside of India. By the time of her death, in 2002, it was being practiced everywhere, from Brooklyn to Berlin to Ulaanbaatar. In The Goddess Pose, New York Times best-selling author Michelle Goldberg traces the life of the incredible woman who brought yoga to the West and in so doing paints a sweeping picture of the twentieth century.Born into the minor aristocracy (as Eugenia Peterson), Devi grew up in the midst of one of the most turbulent times in human history. Forced to flee the Russian Revolution as a teenager, she joined a famous Berlin cabaret troupe, dove into the vibrant prewar spiritualist movement, and, at a time when it was nearly unthinkable for a young European woman to travel alone, followed the charismatic Theosophical leader Jiddu Krishnamurti to India. Once on the subcontinent, she performed in Indian silent cinema and hobnobbed with the leaders of the independence movement. But her greatest coup was convincing a recalcitrant master yogi to train her in the secrets of his art. Devi would go on to share what she learned with people around the world, teaching in Shanghai during World War II, then in Hollywood, where her students included Gloria Swanson and Greta Garbo. She ran a yoga school in Mexico during the height of the counterculture, served as spiritual adviser to the colonel who tried to overthrow Panamanian strongman Manuel Noriega, and, in her eighties, moved to Buenos Aires at the invitation of a besotted rock star. Everywhere she went, Indra Devi evangelized for yoga, ushering in a global craze that continues unabated. Written with vivid clarity, The Goddess Pose brings her remarkable story as an actress, yogi, and globetrotting adventuress to life.
The Glasgow Coma Scale
By Neil D. A. Stewart
When Lynne offers money to a homeless man on Glasgow's Sauchiehall Street she is shocked to recognise Angus, her former art tutor from college. Lynne once revered him, even dreamed of becoming an artist under his tutelage. Now, she works as a supervisor at an insurance call-centre. And as for Angus, he has fallen on even harder times . . .She insists on inviting him to stay at her flat, but just as Angus doesn't go out of his way to explain the reasons for his misfortune, neither is Lynne's insistence on taking him in to her home purely altruistic.The Glasgow Coma Scale is a barbed love letter to the city, a dysfunctional romance, and a story about damage: the kind done unthinkingly, the kind done deliberately, and the worst sort - the harm we do even as we're trying to do 'the right thing'.'Neil Stewart is the kind of writer who appears once in a generation, gifts fully formed. Through the unforgettable duo of Angus and Lynne, he takes us to places where other novels fear to treat, from the perils of life on a park bench through the murky grey areas of love to the ineffable mysteries of art. Compassionate, brave, singing with life, The Glasgow Coma Scale is an outstanding debut from an extraordinary talent.' Paul Murray, author of Skippy Dies
The Girl Who Couldn't Stop Arguing
By Melissa Kite
Madison Flight refuses to be born for five days. She comes out eventually - kicking, screaming, and scarred for life by forceps - but it isn't long before her mother, Cynthia, realises the terrible truth: she has given birth to the world's first arguing baby.Cyntha's husband Mitchell soon takes off in terror, leaving her to raise their quarrelsome rugrat with only the help of the next door neighbour Shirley - a sadistic retired nurse who detests children.Madison's young life is full of proud milestones: at the age of one she breaks the world record for the number of times anyone has said the word 'no' during a two week Spanish package holiday - 4,477 times - and she gets better with practice. Lots of practice.This is the story of a girl who wanted to be right rather than happy. This is the story of the girl who couldn't stop arguing.
The Girl Who Soared Over Fairyland and Cut the Moon in Two
By Catherynne M. Valente
September misses Fairyland and her friends Ell, the Wyverary, and the boy Saturday. She longs to leave the routines of home, and embark on a new adventure. Little does she know that this time, she will be spirited away to the moon, reunited with her friends, and find herself faced with saving Fairyland from a moon-Yeti with great and mysterious powers.Here is another rich, beautifully told, wisely humorous and passionately layered book from New York Times bestselling author Catherynne M. Valente.Praise for the FAIRYLAND series:'One of the most extraordinary works of fantasy, for adults or children, published so far this century.' Time Magazine (A Time Best Book of 2012)'A glorious balancing act between modernism and the Victorian fairy-tale, done with heart and wisdom.' Neil Gaiman'A mad, toothsome romp of a fairy-tale - full of oddments, whimsy and joy.' Holly Black, author of Zombies vs. Unicorns and the Spiderwick Chronicles'September is a clever, fun, stronghearted addition to the ranks of bold, adventurous girls. Valente's subversive storytelling is sheer magic.' Tamora Pierce, author of The Immortals series'Valente is making new myths right now, before our eyes. Don't miss the show.' Lev Grossman'One of the strongest fantasy novels for young readers I've had the pleasure of getting lost in...There's as much Phantom Tollbooth here as there is Narnia...Shot through with menace and heroism, you never know what's coming next.' Cory Doctorow
The Girl Who Fell Beneath Fairyland and Led the Revels There
By Catherynne M. Valente
In the kingdom of Fairyland-Below, preparations are underway for the annual Revels . . . but aboveground, the creatures of Fairyland are in no mood for a party. It has been a long time since young September bid farewell to Fairyland, and she is excited to see it again; but upon her return she is shocked to find that her friends have been losing their shadows, and therefore their magic, to the kingdom of Fairyland-Below... It spells certain disaster and September won't stand for it. Determined to make amends, she travels down into the underworld where, among creatures of ice and moonlight, she encounters a face she recognizes all too well: Halloween, the Hollow Queen. Only then does September realize what she must do to save Fairyland from slipping into the mundane world forever.Come and join in the Revels with September and her friends. But be warned: in Fairyland-Below, even the best of friends aren't always what they seem . . . Praise for The Girl Who Circumnavigated Farilyand in a Ship of Her Own Making:'A glorious balancing act between modernism and the Victorian Fairy Tale, done with heart and wisdom.' Neil Gaiman.'An Alice in Wonderland for the 21st century... So effortless, so vivid, so funny. Every page has a phrase or observation to savour and her characters are wondrous creations.' Sunday Telegraph.'A charming modern fairytale...with a knowing twinkle in its eye.' Telegraph.'A whole esoteric world of whimsy - Alice meets the Wizard of Oz meets the Persephone story with a whiff of Narnia.' Independent on Sunday.'Bundles of imagination and wry wit.' Financial Times.
Glamour in Glass
By Mary Robinette Kowal
Jane and David Vincent, both glamourists of some repute, are enjoying a blissful honeymoon on the continent when their romantic getaway goes horribly awry. They are in Belgium when they learn that Napoleon Bonaparte, the deposed emperor, has fled from exile throwing Europe into turmoil. Suddenly Jane and David find themselves in great danger, with no easy way back home to England, no possibility of rescue from abroad, and no real way to tell friend from foe. When David is taken prisoner, Jane determines to put herself at risk, using her most cunning, strongest magic to save her beloved, herself, and their unborn child from harm. . .
The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making
By Catherynne M. Valente
September is a twelve-year-old girl, Somewhat Grown and Somewhat Heartless, and she longs for adventure. So when a Green Wind and a Leopard of Little Breezes invite her to Fairyland - well, of course, she accepts (mightn't you?). When she gets there, she finds a land crushed by the iron rule of a villainous Marquess - she soon discovers that she alone holds the key to restoring order. As September forges her way through Fairyland, with a book-loving dragon and a boy named Saturday by her side, she makes many friends and mistakes. But while she loses her shadow, her shoe and her way, she finds adventure, courage, a rather special Spoon, and a lot more besides . . .
By Jonathan Trigell
In the Britain of a few tomorrows time, physical perfection is commonplace and self improvement has become an extinct expression: all the qualities men and women could aspire to can be purchased prior to birth. GENUS is a time of genetic selection and enrichment - life chances come on a sliding scale according to wealth. For some there is no money or choice, and an underclass has evolved; London's King's Cross, or The Kross as it is now known, has become a ghetto for the Unimproved. In The Kross, the natural, the dated, the cheap and the dull, live a brittle and unenviable existence. But unrest is growing; tension is mounting and a murderer is abroad in these dark quarters...Acclaimed author Jonathan Trigell's third novel is a breathtaking tour de force, exploring a dystopia of the not-too-distant-a future which will leave readers wondering not 'what if', as the original audience of Huxley's Brave New World did, but 'when'. Praise for Jonathan Trigell:'A compelling narrative, a beautifully structured piece of writing, and a thought-provoking novel of ideas. It's a wonderful debut.' - Sarah Waters, Chair of the Judges for the John Llewellyn Rhys Prize on Boy A'A fine and moving debut novel... compulsively readable... a rare treat' The Independent on Boy A'Does for extreme winter sports what Alex Garland's The Beach did for backpacking.' - Financial Times on Cham.
Group of Death
By C M Taylor
Football is the cruellest game. Legendary footballer and England Captain Kev King takes no prisoners - on and off the pitch. He'll stop at nothing in his quest for fame, lifestyle and silverware. But as all who fell for Kev's 'charms' in PREMIERSHIP PSYCHO will remember, Kev's got a temper - a bad one. Now unjustly accused and losing his place in the England's 2012 squad, Kev's hurt, rejected and publicly betrayed. Short of offers, he signs up with some two-bit side in the Caucasus, pushing deeper and deeper into the country's political intrigue. But can Kev really swap nations and make it to 2012 after all? And can he keep his temper in check long enough to clear his name? A darkly hilarious tale of football, vengeance, winning and losing. GROUP OF DEATH will be loved by all those who can think of nothing except Euro 2012 - and by all those who are dreading it entirely.You can follow Kev King @KevishlyPraise for Premiership Psycho:'The more of a c*nt Kev King is, the more I like him. How the f*ck is that possible? ... Very good writing. Best book since Kill Your Friends. Bring on the film.' Plan B'Taylor is clearly a very accomplished and witty prose stylist... Premiership Psycho is deeply satirical and horribly entertaining.' The Mirror'As with all good satire, this dystopian vision inspires laughter and loathing in equal measure.' Independent on Sunday'Magnificent... Hilarious and heinous.' Sport Magazine'Funny, dark and a huge mickey-take on celebrity. Brilliant.' The Sun
By Michael Crummey
An intricate family saga and love story spanning two centuries, Galore is a portrait of the improbable medieval world that was rural Newfoundland, a place almost too harrowing and extravagant to be real. Remote and isolated, exposed to savage extremes of climate and fate, the people of Paradise Deep persist in a realm where the line between the everyday and the otherworldly is impossible to distinguish. Propelled by the disputes and alliances, grievances and trade-offs that bind the Sellers and Devine families through generations, Galore is alive with singular characters, and an uncommon insight into the complexities of human nature.Sprawling and intimate, stark and fantastical, Galore is a novel about the power of stories to shape and sustain us. This is Michael Crummey's most ambitious and accomplished work to date.