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  1. 11.4 hrs • 9/27/2016 • Unabridged

    More than a decade after the New York Times bestselling anthology The Bitch in the House spoke up loud and clear for a generation of young woman, nine of the original contributors are back—along with sixteen captivating new voices—sharing their ruminations from an older, stronger, and wiser perspective about love, sex, work, family, independence, body image, health, and aging: the critical flash points of women’s lives today. “Born out of anger,” the essays in The Bitch in the House chronicled the face of womanhood at the beginning of a new millennium. Now those funny, smart, passionate contributors—today less bitter and resentful, and more confident, competent, and content—capture the spirit of postfeminism in this equally provocative, illuminating, and compelling companion anthology. Having aged into their forties, fifties, and sixties, these “bitches”—bestselling authors, renowned journalists, and critically acclaimed novelists—are back … and better than ever. In The Bitch Is Back, Cathi Hanauer, Kate Christensen, Sarah Crichton, Debora Spar, Ann Hood, Veronica Chambers, and nineteen other women offer unique views on womanhood and feminism today. Some of the “original bitches” (OBs) revisit their earlier essays to reflect on their previous selves. All reveal how their lives have changed in the intervening years—whether they stayed coupled, left marriages, or had affairs; developed cancer or other physical challenges; coped with partners who strayed, died, or remained faithful; became full-time wage earners or homemakers; opened up their marriages; remained childless or became parents; or experienced other meaningful life transitions. As a “new wave” of feminists begins to take center stage, this powerful, timely collection sheds a much-needed light on both past and present, offering understanding, compassion, and wisdom for modern women’s lives, all the while pointing toward the exciting possibilities of tomorrow.

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    The Bitch Is Back by Cathi Hanauer

    The Bitch Is Back

    Edited by Cathi Hanauer
    11.4 hrs • 9/27/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 4.6 hrs • 8/30/2016 • Unabridged

    The maestro storyteller and reporter provocatively argues that what we think we know about speech and human evolution is wrong. Tom Wolfe, whose legend began in journalism, takes us on an eye-opening journey that is sure to arouse widespread debate. The Kingdom of Speech is a captivating, paradigm-shifting argument that speech—not evolution—is responsible for humanity’s complex societies and achievements. From Alfred Russel Wallace, the Englishman who beat Darwin to the theory of natural selection but later renounced it, and through the controversial work of modern-day anthropologist Daniel Everett, who defies the current wisdom that language is hard-wired in humans, Wolfe examines the solemn, long-faced, laugh-out-loud zig-zags of Darwinism, old and Neo, and finds it irrelevant here in the Kingdom of Speech.

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    The Kingdom of Speech

    4.6 hrs • 8/30/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 4.6 hrs • 7/1/2016 • Unabridged

    People keep track. In the eighteenth century, Benjamin Franklin kept charts of time spent and virtues lived up to. Today, people use technology to self-track: hours slept, steps taken, calories consumed, medications administered. Ninety million wearable sensors were shipped in 2014 to help us gather data about our lives. This book examines how people record, analyze, and reflect on this data, looking at the tools they use and the communities they become part of. Gina Neff and Dawn Nafus describe what happens when people turn their everyday experience—in particular, health and wellness-related experience—into data, and offer an introduction to the essential ideas and key challenges of using these technologies. They consider self-tracking as a social and cultural phenomenon, describing not only the use of data as a kind of mirror of the self but also how this enables people to connect to, and learn from, others. Neff and Nafus consider what’s at stake: who wants our data and why; the practices of serious self-tracking enthusiasts; the design of commercial self-tracking technology; and how self-tracking can fill gaps in the healthcare system. Today, no one can lead an entirely untracked life. Neff and Nafus show us how to use data in a way that empowers and educates.

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  4. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    6.8 hrs • 6/28/2016 • Unabridged

    From a former marine and Yale Law School graduate, a powerful account of growing up in a poor Rust Belt town that offers a broader, probing look at the struggles of America’s white working class. Hillbilly Elegy is a passionate and personal analysis of a culture in crisis—that of white working-class Americans. The decline of this group, a demographic of our country that has been slowly disintegrating over forty years, has been reported on with growing frequency and alarm, but has never before been written about as searingly from the inside. J. D. Vance tells the true story of what a social, regional, and class decline feels like when you were born with it hung around your neck. The Vance family story begins hopefully in postwar America. J. D.’s grandparents were “dirt poor and in love,” and moved north from Kentucky’s Appalachia region to Ohio in the hopes of escaping the dreadful poverty around them. They raised a middle-class family, and eventually their grandchild (the author) would graduate from Yale Law School, a conventional marker of their success in achieving generational upward mobility. But as the family saga of Hillbilly Elegy plays out, we learn that this is only the short, superficial version. Vance’s grandparents, aunt, uncle, sister, and, most of all, his mother, struggled profoundly with the demands of their new middle-class life, and were never able to fully escape the legacy of abuse, alcoholism, poverty, and trauma so characteristic of their part of America. Vance piercingly shows how he himself still carries around the demons of their chaotic family history. A deeply moving memoir with its share of humor and vividly colorful figures, Hillbilly Elegy is the story of how upward mobility really feels. And it is an urgent and troubling meditation on the loss of the American dream for a large segment of this country.

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    Hillbilly Elegy by J. D. Vance

    Hillbilly Elegy

    6.8 hrs • 6/28/16 • Unabridged
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  5. 9.2 hrs • 6/28/2016 • Unabridged
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    My Father Before Me

    9.2 hrs • 6/28/16 • Unabridged
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  6. 9.9 hrs • 6/21/2016 • Unabridged

    In the spirit of Gretchen Rubin’s The Happiness Project and Eric Weiner’s The Geography of Bliss, a journalist embarks on a project to discover what it takes to love where you live. The average restless American will move 11.7 times in a lifetime. For Melody Warnick, it was her sixth move, from Austin, Texas, to Blacksburg, Virginia, that threatened to unhinge her. In the lonely aftermath of unpacking, she wondered: Aren’t we supposed to put down roots at some point? How does the place we live become the place we want to stay? This time she had an epiphany. Rather than hold her breath and hope this new town would be her family’s perfect fit, she would figure out how to fall in love with it—no matter what. How we come to feel at home in our towns and cities is what Warnick sets out to discover in This Is Where You Belong. She dives into the body of research around place attachment—the deep sense of connection that binds some of us to our cities and increases our physical and emotional well-being—then travels to towns across America to see it in action. Inspired by a growing movement of placemaking, she examines what its practitioners are doing to create likable locales. She also speaks with frequent movers and loyal stayers around the country to learn what draws highly mobile Americans to a new city, and what makes us stay. The best ideas she imports to her adopted hometown of Blacksburg for a series of “Love Where You Live” experiments designed to make her feel more locally connected: dining with her neighbors, shopping Small Business Saturday, marching in the town Christmas parade. Can these efforts make a halfhearted resident happier? Will Blacksburg be the place she finally stays? What Warnick learns will inspire you to embrace your own community—and perhaps discover that the place where you live right now … is home.

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    This Is Where You Belong by Melody Warnick

    This Is Where You Belong

    9.9 hrs • 6/21/16 • Unabridged
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  7. 9.6 hrs • 4/12/2016 • Unabridged

    In this revolutionary and provocative exploration of the history, biology, treatment, and shared experience of mental anguish, the New York Times bestselling author and former FDA Commissioner examines how and why we become the agents of our own suffering and what we can do to change it. His unified theory of the mind—which he terms “capture”—will transform how we understand the unwanted thoughts that trouble all of us. Dr. David A. Kessler has spent the past two decades studying how addictive substances can influence our thoughts and behavior. In Capture, he considers some of the most profound questions we face as human beings: Why do we think and act in ways that are detrimental to our wellbeing? What is the origin of emotional anguish, from everyday unhappiness to mental illness? Is it possible that addiction, depression, anxiety, obsession, bipolar disorder, and even psychosis are somehow manifestations of the same biological mechanism? Informed by the latest research in psychology and neuroscience, Dr. Kessler examines how our minds become “captured,” or taken hostage by a physiological process that feels beyond our control. He explores how the phenomenon of capture has been portrayed in literature, philosophy, religion, and art, from Aristotle’s belief in the triumph of human virtue to William James’ concept of selective attention. Dr. Kessler’s theory is brilliantly and compellingly portrayed with stories from a diverse range of afflicted lives: ordinary people, prominent writers such as David Foster Wallace, Franz Kafka, and Anne Sexton, and criminals like Sirhan Sirhan and Ted Kaczynski. On the other side of the spectrum, Dr. Kessler also examines where the mechanism of capture offers the potential for psychological benefit, and may be responsible for experiences of positive change or transcendence. The closer we can come to fully comprehending the nature of capture, Dr. Kessler argues, the better chance we have to alleviate its deleterious effects. Ultimately, Capture offers a unified field theory of the human mind, providing insight into the ways in which experience, memory, emotion, thought, and behavior are inextricably linked, and how we might begin to unwind the processes of the human mind to create meaning and, ultimately, freedom.

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    Capture by David A. Kessler, M.D., David A. Kessler, MD

    Capture

    9.6 hrs • 4/12/16 • Unabridged
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  8. 9.2 hrs • 3/1/2016 • Unabridged

    Capital in the Twenty-First Century meets The Second Machine Age in this stunning and optimistic tour de force on the promise and peril of the digital economy, from one of the most brilliant social critics of our time. Digital technology was supposed to usher in a new age of endless prosperity, but so far it has been used to put industrial capitalism on steroids, making it harder for people and businesses to keep up. Social networks surrender their original missions to more immediately profitable data mining, while brokerage houses abandon value investing for algorithms that drain markets and our 401ks alike—all tactics driven by the need to stoke growth by any means necessary. Instead of taking this opportunity to reprogram our economy for sustainability, we have doubled down on growth as its core command. We have reached the limits of this approach. We must escape the growth trap, once and for all. Media scholar and technology author Douglas Rushkoff—one of today’s most original and influential thinkers—argues for a new economic program that utilizes the unique distributive power of the internet while breaking free of the winner-take-all system the growth trap leaves in its wake. Drawing on sources both contemporary and historical, Rushkoff pioneers a new understanding of the old economic paradigm, from central currency to debt to corporations and labor. Most importantly, he offers a series of practical steps for businesses, consumers, investors, and policymakers to remake the economic operating system from the inside out—and prosper along the way. Instead of boycotting Wal-Mart or overtaxing the wealthy, we simply implement strategies that foster the creation of value by stakeholders other than just ourselves. From our currency to our labor to the corporation, every aspect of the economy can be reprogrammed with minimal disruption to create a more equitably distributed prosperity for all. Inspiring and challenging, Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus provides a pragmatic, optimistic, and human-centered model for economic progress in the digital age.

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    Throwing Rocks at the Google Bus

    9.2 hrs • 3/1/16 • Unabridged
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  9. 12.4 hrs • 1/26/2016 • Unabridged

    A riveting, real-life equivalent of The Kite Runner—an astonishingly powerful and profoundly moving story of a young couple willing to risk everything for love that puts a human face on the ongoing debate about women’s rights in the Muslim world Zakia and Ali were from different tribes, but they grew up on neighboring farms in the hinterlands of Afghanistan. By the time they were young teenagers, Zakia, strikingly beautiful and fiercely opinionated, and Ali, shy and tender, had fallen in love. Defying their families, sectarian differences, cultural conventions, and Afghan civil and Islamic law, they ran away together only to live under constant threat from Zakia’s large and vengeful family, who have vowed to kill her to restore the family’s honor. They are still in hiding. Despite a decade of American good intentions, women in Afghanistan are still subjected to some of the worst human rights violations in the world. Rod Nordland, then the Kabul bureau chief of the New York Times, had watched these abuses unfold for years when he came upon Zakia and Ali, and has not only chronicled their plight, but has also shepherded them from danger. The Lovers will do for women’s rights generally what Malala’s story did for women’s education. It is an astonishing story about self-determination and the meaning of love that illustrates, as no policy book could, the limits of Western influence on fundamentalist Islamic culture and, at the same time, the need for change.

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    The Lovers

    12.4 hrs • 1/26/16 • Unabridged
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  10. 12.5 hrs • 1/12/2016 • Unabridged

    From the New York Times bestselling author of Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes, a compelling investigation into the minds, motives, and methods of con artists—and the people who fall for their cons over and over again While cheats and swindlers may be a dime a dozen, true conmen—the Bernie Madoffs, the Jim Bakkers, the Lance Armstrongs—are elegant, outsized personalities, artists of persuasion and exploiters of trust. How do they do it? Why are they successful? And what keeps us falling for it, over and over again? These are the questions that journalist and psychologist Maria Konnikova tackles in her mesmerizing new book. From multimillion-dollar Ponzi schemes to small-time frauds, Konnikova pulls together a selection of fascinating stories to demonstrate what all cons share in common, drawing on scientific, dramatic, and psychological perspectives. Insightful and gripping, the book brings readers into the world of the con, examining the relationship between artist and victim. The Confidence Game asks not only why we believe con artists, but also examines the very act of believing and how our sense of truth can be manipulated by those around us.

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    The Confidence Game

    12.5 hrs • 1/12/16 • Unabridged
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  11. 15.2 hrs • 1/5/2016 • Unabridged

    A landmark work of American photojournalism “renowned for its fusion of social conscience and artistic radicality” (New York Times) In the summer of 1936, James Agee and Walker Evans set out on assignment for Fortune magazine to explore the daily lives of sharecroppers in the South. Their journey would prove an extraordinary collaboration and a watershed literary event when Let Us Now Praise Famous Men was first published in 1941 to enormous critical acclaim. This unsparing record of place, of the people who shaped the land, and the rhythm of their lives is intensely moving and unrelentingly honest, and today—recognized by the New York Public Library as one of the most influential books of the twentieth century—it stands as a poetic tract of its time. With a sixty-four-page photographic prologue featuring archival reproductions of Evans’ classic images, this book offers readers a window into a remarkable slice of American history.

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    Let Us Now Praise Famous Men by James Agee

    Let Us Now Praise Famous Men

    Photographs by Walker Evans
    Read by Lloyd James
    15.2 hrs • 1/5/16 • Unabridged
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  12. 9.2 hrs • 10/1/2015 • Unabridged

    In this clear and erudite presentation of the principles of smart transportation and sustainable urban planning, Samuel Schwartz uncovers how American cities became so beholden to cars and why the current shift away from that trend will forever alter America’s urban landscape. On a Saturday morning in December 1973, a section of New York’s West Side Highway collapsed under the weight of a truck full of asphalt. The road was closed, seemingly for good, and the 80,000 cars that traveled it each day had to find a new way to their destinations. It ought to have produced traffic chaos, but it didn’t. The cars simply vanished. It was a moment of revelation: the highway had induced the demand for car travel. It was a classic case of “Build it and they will come,” but for the first time the opposite had been shown to be true: “Knock it down and they will go away.” Samuel Schwartz was inspired by the lesson. He started to reimagine cities, most of all his beloved New York, freed from their obligation to cars. Eventually he found he was not alone. Since the turn of the twenty-first century, a surreptitious revolution has taken place: every year Americans are driving fewer miles. And the generation named for this new century—the millennials—are driving least of all. Not because they can’t afford to; they don’t want to; they have better ideas for how to use their streets. An urban transformation is underway, and smart streets are at the heart of it. They will boost property prices and personal fitness, roll back years of congestion and smog, and offer a transformative experience of American urban life. From San Francisco to Salt Lake, Charleston to Houston, the American city is becoming a better and better place to be. Schwartz’s Street Smart is a dazzling and affectionate history of the struggle for control of American cities, and an inspiring off-road map to a more vibrant, active, and vigorous urban future.

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    Street Smart by Samuel I. Schwartz

    Street Smart

    By Samuel I. Schwartz, with William Rosen
    Read by Don Hagen
    9.2 hrs • 10/1/15 • Unabridged
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  13. 3.8 hrs • 10/1/2015 • Unabridged

    In December 2012, the exuberant video “Gangnam Style” became the first YouTube clip to be viewed more than one billion times. Thousands of its viewers responded by creating and posting their own variations of the video—“Mitt Romney Style,” “NASA Johnson Style,” “Egyptian Style,” and many others. “Gangnam Style” (and its attendant parodies, imitations, and derivations) is one of the most famous examples of an Internet meme: a piece of digital content that spreads quickly around the web in various iterations and becomes a shared cultural experience. In Memes in Digital Culture, Limor Shifman investigates Internet memes and what they tell us about digital culture. Shifman discusses a series of well-known Internet memes—including “Leave Britney Alone,” the pepper-spraying cop, LOLCats, Scumbag Steve, and Occupy Wall Street’s “We Are the 99 Percent.” She offers a novel definition of Internet memes: digital content units with common characteristics, created with awareness of each other, and circulated, imitated, and transformed via the Internet by many users. She differentiates memes from virals, analyzes what makes memes and virals successful, describes popular meme genres, discusses memes as new modes of political participation in democratic and nondemocratic regimes, and examines memes as agents of globalization. Memes, Shifman argues, encapsulate some of the most fundamental aspects of the Internet in general and of the participatory Web 2.0 culture in particular. Internet memes may be entertaining, but Limor Shifman makes a compelling argument for taking them seriously.

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    Memes in Digital Culture by Limor Shifman
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  14. 9.7 hrs • 9/29/2015 • Unabridged

    A powerful, persuasive, thought-provoking vision for how to finish the long struggle for equality between men and women, work and family. When Anne-Marie Slaughter accepted her dream job as the first female director of policy planning at the US State Department in 2009, she was confident she could juggle the demands of her position in Washington, DC, with the responsibilities of her family life in suburban New Jersey. Her husband and two young sons encouraged her to pursue the job; she had a tremendously supportive boss, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton; and she had been moving up on a high-profile career track since law school. But then life intervened. Parenting needs caused her to make a decision to leave the State Department and return to an academic career that gave her more time for her family. The reactions to her choice to leave Washington because of her kids led her to question the feminist narrative she grew up with. Her subsequent article for the Atlantic, “Why Women Still Can’t Have It All,” created a firestorm, sparked intense national debate, and became one of the most-read pieces in the magazine’s history. Since that time, Anne-Marie Slaughter has pushed forward, breaking free of her long-standing assumptions about work, life, and family. Though many solutions have been proposed for how women can continue to break the glass ceiling or rise above the “motherhood penalty,” women at the top and the bottom of the income scale are further and further apart. Now, in her refreshing and forthright voice, Anne-Marie Slaughter returns with her vision for what true equality between men and women really means, and how we can get there. She uncovers the missing piece of the puzzle, presenting a new focus that can reunite the women’s movement and provide a common banner under which both men and women can advance and thrive. With moving personal stories, individual action plans, and a broad outline for change, Anne-Marie Slaughter reveals a future in which all of us can finally finish the business of equality for women and men, work and family.

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    Unfinished Business

    9.7 hrs • 9/29/15 • Unabridged
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  15. 7.2 hrs • 9/29/2015 • Unabridged

    For as long as we’ve gathered by campfires to tell ghost stories, humans have always loved a good scare. From the splatter flicks of the 70s, to Japan’s obsession with drowned girls, to creepy modern experiences like the overnight ghost hunt at the Trans-Allegheny Lunatic Asylum, the horror industry has thrived across time and cultures. Our obsession with getting scared is obvious to anyone who visits ScareHouse, a haunted house in Pittsburgh that is annually ranked among the scariest in the country, and has become a booming attraction with nearly 150 employees and lines wrapping around the block. It even has its own sociologist, who conducts surveys and observations to make its performances ever more terrifying. Her name is Margee Kerr In this surprising, scary, entertaining book, Kerr puts her expertise to the test. Not merely content to observe others’ fear, she confronts it in the form of things like skydiving, paranormal investigations, and a visit to Japan’s infamous “suicide forest.” In her willingness to explore the world’s scariest attractions, Kerr shows why we seek out terror even when there is plenty to fear in everyday life. Whether she’s dangling by a cable from a 116-story tower or experiencing New York City’s “Extreme Haunt,” BlackOut, in which participants are handcuffed, forced to crawl through dark tunnels, and given a gun and told to shoot someone, Kerr parses the elements of fear with humor and the precision of an expert. Along the way, she takes a personal journey that leads to valuable insights about what we fear—and what it says about who we are.

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    Scream

    7.2 hrs • 9/29/15 • Unabridged
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  16. 12.7 hrs • 9/15/2015 • Unabridged

    The #1 bestselling pioneer of “fratire” and a leading evolutionary psychologist team up to create the dating book for guys. Whether they conducted their research in life or in the lab, experts Tucker Max and Dr. Geoffrey Miller have spent the last twenty-plus years learning what women really want from their men, why they want it, and how men can deliver those qualities.The short answer: become the best version of yourself possible, then show it off. It sounds simple, but it’s not. If it were, Tinder would just be the stuff you use to start a fire. Becoming your best self requires honesty, self-awareness, hard work, and a little help.Through their website and podcasts, Max and Miller have already helped over one million guys take their first steps toward Miss Right. They have collected all of their findings in Mate, an evidence-driven, seriously funny playbook that will teach you to become a more sexually attractive and romantically successful man, the right way:no “seduction techniques,”no moralizing,no bullshit. Just honest, straightforward talk about the most ethical, effective way to pursue the win-win relationships you want with the women who are best for you. Much of what they’ve discovered will surprise you, some of it will not, but all of it is important and often misunderstood. So listen up, and stop being stupid!

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    Mate

    12.7 hrs • 9/15/15 • Unabridged
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