Every Word is a Bird We Teach to Sing
By Daniel Tammet
'Full of charm and fascination' The Bookseller'Tammet's intriguing cases of linguistic idiosyncrasies expand our notions on what it means to be human . . . Would dazzle any storyteller in love with words and their deepest meanings' Amy Tan, author of Joy Luck Club'A generous book and a beguiling read' Rebecca Gowers* * * * * *From the bestselling author of Born on a Blue Day and Thinking in Numbers, a delightful and eclectic exploration of language, and what it can teach us about ourselves and our lives.Why is the name 'Cleopatra' not allowed in Iceland? Why do clocks 'talk' to the Nahua people of Mexico? And if we are what we eat, are we also what we say? These are just some of the questions Daniel Tammet answers in Every Word is a Bird We Teach to Sing, a mesmerising new collection of essays investigating the intricacies and profound power of human language. Tammet goes back in time to explore the numeric language of his autistic childhood; he looks at the music and patterns that words make, and how languages evolve and are translated. He meets one of the world's most accomplished lip readers in Canada, learns how endangered languages like Manx are being revived and corresponds with native speakers of Esperanto in their mother tongue. He studies the grammar of the telephone, contemplates the significance of disappearing dialects, and also asks: will chatbots ever manage to convince us that they are human?From the art of translation to the lyricism of sign language, Every Word is a Bird We Teach to Sing is a fascinating journey through the world of words, letters, stories and meanings, and an extraordinary testament to the stunning range of Tammet's literary and polyglot talents.
Finding God in the Waves
By Mike McHargue
'Through the lens of neuroscience, McHargue makes his case for valuing religion not for its factual explanatory power but rather for its ability to give meaning to human existence . . . For those who fear science will rob them of both God and Christian community, this work may offer much-needed hope that Christianity and science can coexist.'-Publishers Weekly'I thoroughly recommend this book. It is written with humility, honesty and a liberal sprinkling of humour ... not only thought-provoking, but also a jolly good read ... A review does not do it justice, so I suggest you read the book!'- Methodist RecorderWhat do you do when God dies? It's a question facing millions today, as science reveals a universe that's self-creating, western culture departs from its Christian heritage and the idea of God begins to seem implausible at best and barbaric at worst. Mike McHargue understands the pain of unravelling belief. In Finding God in the Waves, Mike tells the story of how his evangelical faith dissolved into atheism as he studied the Bible, a crisis that threatened his identity, his friendships and even his marriage. Years later, Mike was standing on the shores of the Pacific Ocean when a bewildering, seemingly mystical moment motivated him to take another look. But this time, it wasn't theology or scripture that led him back to God - it was science. In Finding God in the Waves, 'Science Mike' draws on his personal experience to tell the unlikely story of how science led him back to faith. Among other revelations, we learn what brain scans reveal about what happens when we pray; how fundamentalism affects the psyche; and how God is revealed not only in scripture, but in the night sky, in subatomic particles, and in us.For the faithful and sceptic alike, Finding God in the Waves is a powerful, page-turning read about belonging, life's biggest questions, and the hope of knowing God in an age of science.
The Girl Who Climbed Everest
By Bonita Norris
'What I've learned from climbing mountains is that we can push ourselves far beyond what we think we are capable of, and it's outside of our comfort zones that the most amazing things happen.'What drives us to go to our limits and beyond? What does it take to make dreams come true over all else? And how can you turn fear into courage? From Everest to K2, The Girl Who Climbed Everest is the story of Bonita Norris' journey undertaking the world's toughest and most dangerous expeditions. Once an anxious teenager with an eating disorder it was the discovery of a passion for climbing that inspired Bonita to change her life. Drawing on her experiences to capture the agonies - both mental and physical - and joys of her incredible feats Bonita also imparts the lessons learned encouraging you to harness greater self-belief.The Girl Who Climbed Everest is an honest exploration of everything Bonita has learnt from climbing. Life lessons about ambition, values, risk, happiness, the courage to fail, and what's ultimately important. An indispensable and important book for anyone who has ever doubted their potential or put limits on themselves - whatever challenge you face or ambitions you want to achieve, The Girl Who Climbed Everest will inspire you to take action and live life more fearlessly.
The Finch in My Brain
By Martino Sclavi
'Whenever I see Martino I am reminded of how little I know about life and death compared to him. How we don't know what is within us or what may lie on the other side. I hope it's as magical and beautiful as this book.' --Russell Brand'...it represents some kind of miracle just by its ever having been written ... Sclavi's optimism shines through it.' the TelegraphWhen film producer Martino Sclavi began experiencing intense headaches, he attributed them to his frenetic lifestyle. As it turned out, he had grade 4 brain cancer and was given 18 months to live. After undergoing brain surgery - while awake - Martino found he had lost the ability to recognise words. His response was to close his eyes and begin to move his fingers across the keyboard to write this, an account of life before diagnosis and since. Defying all predictions Martino is still very much alive, words read out to him by the monotone of a computerised voice he calls Alex. But he must now live in a new way. This book - that he has written but cannot read - charts the effects of his experience: on his relationship with his young son, his marriage, his work and with himself. In the wake of his illness, everything must be reconfigured and Martino is made to question the habits, dreams and beliefs of his old life and confront the present. What he finds is strange and beautiful. Searching for the words between life and death, Sclavi shows that with determination and a subtle, persistent sense of humour, it is possible to change the story of our lives.
Dashing for the Post
By Patrick Leigh Fermor
A revelatory collection of letters written by the author of The Broken Road.Handsome, spirited and erudite, Patrick Leigh Fermor was a war hero and one of the greatest travel writers of his generation. He was also a spectacularly gifted friend. The letters in this collection span almost seventy years, the first written ten days before Paddy's twenty-fifth birthday, the last when he was ninety-four. His correspondents include Deborah Devonshire, Ann Fleming, Nancy Mitford, Lawrence Durrell, Diana Cooper and his lifelong companion, Joan Rayner; he wrote his first letter to her in his cell at the monastery Saint Wandrille, the setting for his reflections on monastic life in A Time to Keep Silence. His letters exhibit many of his most engaging characteristics: his zest for life, his unending curiosity, his lyrical descriptive powers, his love of language, his exuberance and his tendency to get into scrapes - particularly when drinking and, quite separately, driving. Here are plenty of extraordinary stories: the hunt for Byron's slippers in one of the remotest regions of Greece; an ignominious dismissal from Somerset Maugham's Villa Mauresque; hiding behind a bush to dub Dirk Bogarde into Greek during the shooting of Ill Met by Moonlight, the film based on the story of General Kreipe's abduction; his extensive travels. Some letters contain glimpses of the great and the good, while others are included purely for the joy of the jokes.
By Ranulph Fiennes
Sir Ranulph Fiennes has climbed the Eiger and Mount Everest. He's crossed both Poles on foot. He's been a member of the SAS and fought a bloody guerrilla war in Oman. And yet he confesses that his fear of heights is so great that he'd rather send his wife up a ladder to clean the gutters than do it himself.In Fear, the world's greatest explorer delves into his own experiences to try and explain what fear is, how it happens and how he's overcome it so successfully. He examines key moments from history where fear played an important part in the outcome of a great event. He shows us how the brain perceives fear, how that manifests itself in us, and how we can transform our perceptions.With an enthralling combination of story-telling, research and personal accounts of his own struggles to overcome fear, Sir Ranulph Fiennes sheds new light on one of humanity's strongest emotions.
By Brendan Cox
'Jo Cox's selfless service to others made the world a better place' Barack Obama, 44th President of the United StatesTHE NUMBER 1 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER'Jo's dedication to a fairer and kinder world beautifully told ...' Bear Grylls 'A desperately tender account ... part love story, part grief memoir ... resolutely uplifting' Decca Aitkenhead, Guardian | 'Brave, inspiring, and full of love.' Daily Express | 'A chance to get to know the woman behind the headlines - a tiny ball of energy with a heart as big as a lion, a person who wanted to make a difference' Lorraine Kelly, SunJo Cox's murder in June 2016 shocked the world. In the aftermath of her tragic death her husband Brendan Cox urged us to remember Jo's life and what she stood for and not the manner of her death. In this inspiring and impassioned portrait of Jo - as daughter, mother, wife, sister, MP and campaigner - we see how much she gave and much more she had to give. The values she embraced of togetherness, inclusion and compassion are needed now more than ever. A touching and very human portrait of an extraordinary woman, whose legacy has already inspired others. This summer over 100,000 events were part of The Great Get Together in honour of Jo. 'We are far more united and have far more in common with each other than things that divide us.'All Brendan Cox's royalties will go to the Jo Cox Foundation.'Jo would have no regrets about her life, she lived every day of it to the full.'
I Can't Make This Up: Life Lessons
By Kevin Hart
Superstar comedian and Hollywood box office star Kevin Hart turns his immense talent to the written word by writing some words. Some of those words include: the, a, for, above, and even even. Put them together and you have the funniest, most heartfelt, and most inspirational memoir on survival, success, and the importance of believing in yourself since Old Yeller.The question you're probably asking yourself right now is: What does Kevin Hart have that a book also has?According to the three people who have seen Kevin Hart and a book in the same room, the answer is clear:A book is compact. Kevin Hart is compact.A book has a spine that holds it together. Kevin Hart has a spine that holds him together.A book has a beginning. Kevin Hart's life uniquely qualifies him to write this book by also having a beginning.It begins in North Philadelphia. He was born an accident, unwanted by his parents. His father was a drug addict who was in and out of jail. His brother was a crack dealer and petty thief. And his mother was overwhelmingly strict, beating him with belts, frying pans, and his own toys.The odds, in short, were stacked against our young hero, just like the odds that are stacked against the release of a new book in this era of social media (where Hart has a following of over 100 million, by the way).But Kevin Hart, like Ernest Hemingway, JK Rowling, and Chocolate Droppa before him, was able to defy the odds and turn it around. In his literary debut, he takes the reader on a journey through what his life was, what it is today, and how he's overcome each challenge to become the man he is today.And that man happens to be the biggest comedian in the world, with tours that sell out football stadiums and films that have collectively grossed over $3.5 billion.He achieved this not just through hard work, determination, and talent: It was through his unique way of looking at the world. Because just like a book has chapters, Hart sees life as a collection of chapters that each person gets to write for himself or herself.'Not only do you get to choose how you interpret each chapter, but your interpretation writes the next chapter," he says. "So why not choose the interpretation that serves your life the best?'
The Gender Games
By Juno Dawson
'Opens minds, breaks down myths and vaporises prejudice - I loved it!' Rebecca Root, star of Boy Meets Girl'funny, thoughtful and honest ... I read most of it on the train and had to stifle laughs every few pages' Stylist'It's a boy!' or 'It's a girl!' are the first words almost all of us hear when we enter the world. Before our names, before we have likes and dislikes - before we, or anyone else, has any idea who we are. And two years ago, as Juno Dawson went to tell her mother she was (and actually, always had been) a woman, she started to realise just how wrong we've been getting it.Gender isn't just screwing over trans people, it's messing with everyone. From little girls who think they can't be doctors to teenagers who come to expect street harassment. From exclusionist feminists to 'alt-right' young men. From men who can't cry to the women who think they shouldn't. As her body gets in line with her mind, Juno tells not only her own story, but the story of everyone who is shaped by society's expectations of gender - and what we can do about it. Featuring insights from well-known gender, feminist and trans activists including Rebecca Root, Laura Bates, Gemma Cairney, Anthony Anaxagorou, Hannah Witton, Alaska Thunderfuck and many more, The Gender Games is a frank, witty and powerful manifesto for a world in which everyone can truly be themselves.
Muhammad Ali: A Memoir
By Michael Parkinson
Muhammad Ali: A Memoir is a fresh, revealing and personal account of the life of the most important and enduring cultural figures of our age. An icon of boxing who has inspired the biggest names in boxing, from Mike Tyson to Anthony Joshua, this is the story of boxing's biggest star. Sir Michael Parkinson interviewed Muhammad Ali four times and in this memoir you are given a ringside seat for all of the interviews.Muhammad Ali was God's Gift to the interviewer. Funny, articulate, outspoken with a fascinating life story, unparalleled talent and controversial views. These 4 interviews charted Ali's life, revealing significant phases at different times, charting the rise and fall of this kaleidoscope of a man.In Muhammad Ali: A Memoir Sir Michael Parkinson will bring his award-winning journalistic talents to bear on this extraordinary man. The book will mix personal recollections of the times they met with selected transcripts of the famous and, in the case of the 1974 meeting, infamous interviews all brought together and contextualised by a sober and honest assessment of the life and times of a figure that, it is certain, we will never see the like of again.
The Grief Survival Guide
By Jeff Brazier
Jeff Brazier has experienced bereavement in many forms: In his childhood, helping his two boys through the devastating death of their mother, Jade Goody, witnessing the anguish of his own mum when she lost both of her parents, and hearing the stories of his coaching clients who are coming to terms with loss. No one can be an expert on grief, but within this book Jeff provides support and guidance from someone who has been there. Accessible and hands-on The Grief Survival Guide offers practical advice on everything from preparing for the eventuality of death, managing grief, how best to support family and friends, and moving forward. There is no 'one size fits all' approach so instead Jeff teaches us that the best we can do is understand, cope and survive.
Mind of a Survivor
By Megan Hine
Surviving in the wild takes a great deal of strength. Often faced with frozen tundra, sweltering deserts, humid jungles, perilous mountains and fast-flowing rivers, Megan Hine is no stranger to perilous conditions. Whilst leading expeditions and bushcraft survival courses and in her work on television shows such as Bear Gryll's Mission Survive and Running Wild, she has explored the corners of the globe in pursuit of adventure.Faced with the toughest of conditions: bad weather; lack of food and being in the presence of predators, is the ultimate test of character and often the biggest challenge to overcome is in the head. In these situations, the human brain is simultaneously the greatest asset and biggest liability. Not everyone is suited to the great outdoors and when danger calls many aren't as well-equipped to survive, no amount of top of the range kit will save you if you don't have the right frame of mind. Here Megan Hine examines the human ability and instinct for survival, showing us how others have developed the attitudes and attributes to thrive in the most dangerous situations, and how those same attitudes and attributes help them confront problems and obstacles at work and at home. Being chased through the jungle by armed opium farm guards, abseiling past bears and lighting fires with tampons, Megan has seen and done it all. In Mind of a Survivor she takes you along for a series of life-and-death adventures and shows you what happens to people when they are pushed to their limits. Inspirational rather than instructional, Megan examines the human ability and instinct for survival sharing the life tools that she uses and showing how they can as easily be applied to more domestic everyday life - from careers to relationships, from overcoming adversity to decision making. Filled with her own experiences, Mind of a Survivor is packed full of adventure and can help people survive in any situation and cope with whatever life throws at them.
Boys Don't Cry
By Tim Grayburn
Boys Don't Cry is a book that will make sense of depression and anxiety for people who might not recognise those feelings in themselves or others.Suicide is the single biggest killer of men aged 20-45 in the UK. Depression and undiagnosed mental illness are huge contributors to these deaths as they're often more difficult to diagnose in men. And those men don't tend to talk about the typical symptoms or visit their doctor.Meet Tim.For nearly a decade he kept his depression secret. It made him feel so weak and shameful he thought it would destroy his whole life if anyone found out. And Tim is not alone. After finally opening up he realised that mental illness was affecting many men around the globe - and he knew that wasn't ok.A brutally honest, wickedly warming and heart-breaking tale about what it really takes to be a 'real man', written by one who decided that he wanted to change the world by no longer being silent. This is Tim's story, but it could be yours too.