The Code Breaker

Author: Walter Isaacson

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $15.99

Deal price: $4.99

Deal starts: June 26, 2022

Deal ends: June 26, 2022

Description:

A Best Book of 2021 by Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Time, and The Washington Post

The bestselling author of Leonardo da Vinci and Steve Jobs returns with a “compelling” (The Washington Post) account of how Nobel Prize winner Jennifer Doudna and her colleagues launched a revolution that will allow us to cure diseases, fend off viruses, and have healthier babies.

When Jennifer Doudna was in sixth grade, she came home one day to find that her dad had left a paperback titled The Double Helix on her bed. She put it aside, thinking it was one of those detective tales she loved. When she read it on a rainy Saturday, she discovered she was right, in a way. As she sped through the pages, she became enthralled by the intense drama behind the competition to discover the code of life. Even though her high school counselor told her girls didn’t become scientists, she decided she would.

Driven by a passion to understand how nature works and to turn discoveries into inventions, she would help to make what the book’s author, James Watson, told her was the most important biological advance since his codiscovery of the structure of DNA. She and her collaborators turned a curiosity of nature into an invention that will transform the human race: an easy-to-use tool that can edit DNA. Known as CRISPR, it opened a brave new world of medical miracles and moral questions.

The development of CRISPR and the race to create vaccines for coronavirus will hasten our transition to the next great innovation revolution. The past half-century has been a digital age, based on the microchip, computer, and internet. Now we are entering a life-science revolution. Children who study digital coding will be joined by those who study genetic code.

Should we use our new evolution-hacking powers to make us less susceptible to viruses? What a wonderful boon that would be! And what about preventing depression? Hmmm…Should we allow parents, if they can afford it, to enhance the height or muscles or IQ of their kids?

After helping to discover CRISPR, Doudna became a leader in wrestling with these moral issues and, with her collaborator Emmanuelle Charpentier, won the Nobel Prize in 2020. Her story is an “enthralling detective story” (Oprah Daily) that involves the most profound wonders of nature, from the origins of life to the future of our species.

Saladin: Hero of Islam

Author: Geoffrey Hindley

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $13.49

Deal price: $0.99

Deal starts: June 26, 2022

Deal ends: June 26, 2022

Description:

This biography of the 12th century Islamic military leader provides a fascinating view of the Crusades and the Medieval Muslim world.

Saladin was a Kurdish military leader who led the fight against the Crusades and rose to become first Sultan of Egypt and Syria. He united warring Muslim lands, reconquered the bulk of Crusader states and faced King Richard I of England in one of the most famous confrontations in medieval warfare. His extraordinary character and career are the key to understanding the Battle of Hattin, the fall of Jerusalem and the failure of the Third Crusade.

Historian Geoffrey Hindley's study of Saladin’s life and times presents a nuanced portrait of this remarkable man who dominated the Middle East in his day. It also offers fascinating insight into the politics and culture of the 12th century Muslim world.

Charlie Wilson’s War

Author: George Crile

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $9.99

Deal price: $1.99

Deal starts: June 26, 2022

Deal ends: June 26, 2022

Description:

The bestselling true story of a Texas congressman’s secret role in the Afghan defeat of Russian invaders is “a tour de force of reporting and writing” (Dan Rather).

A New York Times, Washington Post, and Los Angeles Times bestseller.

Charlie Wilson’s penchant for cocktails and beauty-contest winners was well known, but in the early 1980s, the dilettante congressman quietly conducted one of the most successful covert operations in US history. Using his seat on the House Appropriations Committee, Wilson channeled hundreds of millions of dollars to support a ragged band of Afghan “freedom fighters” in their resistance against Soviet invaders.

Weapons were secretly procured and distributed with the help of an outcast CIA operative named Gust Avrakotos, who stretched the agency’s rules to the breaking point. Moving from the back rooms of Washington to secret chambers at Langley, and from arms-dealers’ conventions to the Khyber Pass, Wilson and Avrakotos helped the mujahideen win an unlikely victory against the Russians.

Adapted into a film starring Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, and Philip Seymour Hoffman, Charlie Wilson’s War chronicles an overlooked chapter in the collapse of the Soviet Union—and the emergence of a brand-new foe in the form of radical Islam.

A Thousand-Mile Walk to the Gulf

Author: John Muir

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $0.99

Deal price: Free

Deal starts: June 26, 2022

Deal ends: June 26, 2022

Description:

"JOHN MUIR, Earth-planet, Universe."—These words are written on the inside cover of the notebook from which the contents of this volume have been taken. They reflect the mood in which the late author and explorer undertook his thousand-mile walk to the Gulf of Mexico. No less does this refreshingly cosmopolitan address, which might have startled any finder of the book, reveal the temper and the comprehensiveness of Mr. Muir's mind. He never was and never could be a parochial student of nature.
In September 1867, Muir undertook a walk of about 1,000 miles (1,600 km) from Kentucky to Florida, which he recounted in his book A Thousand-Mile Walk to the Gulf. He had no specific route chosen, except to go by the "wildest, leafiest, and least trodden way I could find."

Sell the Pig: a travel tale with a twist

Author: Tottie Limejuice

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $2.99

Deal price: Free

Deal starts: June 25, 2022

Deal ends: June 25, 2022

Description:

What happens when dementia, depressed dipsomania and downright dottiness decide to uproot from the UK and move to France together.

Worried by the lack of care for her frail elderly mother in the UK, Tottie decides a new life elsewhere might be the answer. Sell the Pig is a travel tale with a twist, describing with alternating humour and poignancy how a somewhat dysfunctional family decide to uproot and move to rural France.

Eccentric Tottie, her manic depressive alcoholic brother, their mother, whose dementia has given her an obsession with bums, and an equally elderly border collie, decide France's Auvergne is to be their new home.

They Had a Dream

Author: Jules Archer

Category: Biographies & Memoirs

Regular price: $10.99

Deal price: $1.99

Deal starts: June 25, 2022

Deal ends: June 25, 2022

Description:

The majority of the civil rights movement in the United States occurred in three stages. The first stage began with the slaves in America fighting for their freedom. Frederick Douglass was a key player from the very beginning. Born a slave, Douglass escaped and went on to become one of the most respected abolitionist leaders.

After the Civil War, freed slaves fought to overcome the still-prevailing prejudice and persecution. During this phase, Marcus Garvey led the Back to Africa movement, promoting Black Nationalism and black pride among the newly freed people.

And in the 1960s, a strong civil rights movement branched in two different directions. The first was headed by Reverend Martin Luther King Jr., who organized a powerful nonviolent civil disobedience movement to win equal rights through integration. Following a very different path, Malcolm X sought equal rights for blacks through violent confrontation and racial separation.

Together, these four men shaped the American civil rights movement. Racism is still a very relevant problem in our country today, and to better understand where we are now and how to make progress in the future, we must first understand where we’ve come from.