Non-Fiction Catalogue: March 2019
All the books in this catalogue are new books due for release in March 2019.
Because they are new books, we are at the whim of the publishers and, to some extent, the shipping companies – books can sometimes arrive later (or earlier) than, or occasionally be a different retail price, than originally quoted. Because space is a luxury, we bring in limited quantities of books. Prices are subject to change without notice.
Please reserve copies of anything you want, so you don’t miss out – ASAP! If a book has sold out by the time we receive your order, we will back-order and supply, when available. Pulp Fiction has access to thousands of books not shown in our monthly catalogues. We are only too happy to order anything, if we don’t have it on the shelves.
If you can’t make it into the shop, you can post, phone, or e-mail your order. We accept Mastercard, Visa, AMEX, cheques, and Australia Post Money Orders. Approximate current postage (base rate), within Australia, is:
- 1–2 paperbacks (up to 500g), $8.30
- 2–10 paperbacks or any trade paperbacks or hardcovers, within Brisbane, is $10.85
- outside Brisbane metro area (over 500g up to 3kg), $13.40
- anything above 3kg charged at Australia Post rates.
Abbreviations used in this catalogue: PBK = ‘A’ or ‘B’ format (standard size) paperback; TP = ‘B+’ or ‘C’ format (oversize) trade paperback; HC = hardcover or cloth binding.
Until next time, good reading!
New Osprey military history titles
Panzerartillerie: Firepower for the Panzer Divisions (general military)
The German Panzerartillerie was one of the key components of the Panzer divisions that were the spearhead of the German forces, in the years when they overran most of Western Europe and reached as far as the gates of Moscow in the East. Warfare in the age of Blitzkrieg required fast-moving, mobile artillery that could support forward units at the front line, and the Panzerartillerie provided that for the Wehrmacht. The Allies had no answer or equivalent to them until the US entry into the war. Drawing on original material from German archives and private collections, including some images that have never been published before, German armour expert Thomas Anderson explores the formation and development of this force – from its early days in the 1930s, through the glory days of Blitzkrieg warfare, to its eventual decline in the face of the challenges of the Eastern Front.
Military history | HC | $59.99
Morning Star, Midnight Sun: the Early Guadalcanal-Solomons Campaign of World War II, August–October 1942 (general military)
Following the disastrous Java Sea campaign, the Allies went on the offensive in the Pacific in a desperate attempt to halt the Japanese forces that were rampaging across the region. The stakes were high; with the conquest of Australia, a very real possibility. Their target: the Japanese-held Soloman Islands; in particular, the southern island of Guadalcanal. Hamstrung by arcane pre-war thinking and a bureaucratic mindset, the US Navy had to adapt on the fly, in order to compete with the mighty Imperial Japanese Navy, whose ingenuity and creativity thus far had fostered the creation of its Pacific empire. Starting with the amphibious assault on Savo Island, the campaign turned into an attritional struggle where the evenly matched foes sought to grind out a victory. Following on from his hugely successful book Rising Sun, Falling Skies, Jeffrey R Cox tells the gripping story of the first Allied offensive of the Pacific War, as they sought to prevent Japan from cutting off Australia and regaining dominance in the Pacific.
Military history | TP | $19.99
Northrop Flying Wings (X-Planes 10)
Davies, Peter E & Tooby, Adam (illustrator)
Half a century before the ‘flying wing’ B-2 stealth bomber entered service, John K ‘Jack’ Northrop was already developing prototypes of a large ‘flying wing’ strategic bomber, which would have been the most radical bombers of their age. World War II brought a need for very long-range bombers and Northrop received a contract for a 172-ft span bomber, the B-35. Several of these were built, gradually evolving into the definitive XB-35 configuration. Testing revealed that the aircraft was invisible to radar, but engineers struggled to overcome the design challenges and several pilots were lost in crashes. While the program was cancelled in the 1950s, the concept extended into other highly innovative areas, such as the XP-56 and MX-324 Rocket Wing prototype fighters. But the greatest legacy was the first operational flying wing – the Northrop Grumman B-2 stealth bomber, which used much of the hard-won experience from the pioneering programs of half a century before.
Aviation history | PBK | $29.99
Chinese Battleship vs Japanese Cruiser: Yalu River 1894 (Duel 92)
Lai, Benjamin & Wright, Paul; Gilliland, Alan (illustrators)
The 1894–95 war between China and Japan, known in the West as the First Sino-Japanese War, lasted only nine months, but its impact resonates today. The Chinese Beiyang (Northern) Fleet was led by her flagship, Dingyuan, and her sister ship, Zhenyuan, which were the biggest in Asia; German-built armoured turret ships, they were armed with four 12in guns and two 6in guns, plus six smaller guns and three torpedo tubes. For their part, the Japanese fleet, including the Matsushima and her sister ships Itsukushima and Hashidate, were each armed with a single 12.6in Canet gun and 11 or 12 4.7in guns, plus smaller guns and four torpedo tubes. The scene was set for a bloody confrontation that would stun the world and transform the relationship between China and Japan. Fully illustrated with stunning artwork, this is the engrossing story of the Yalu River campaign, where Chinese and Japanese ironclads fought for control of Korea.
Naval history | PBK | $29.99
Japan 1944–45: Lemay’s B-29 Strategic Bombing Campaign (Air Campaign 9)
Lardas, Mark & Wright, Paul (illustrator)
The air campaign that incinerated Japan’s cities was the first and only time that independent air power has won a war. As the United States pushed Imperial Japan back towards Tokyo Bay, the US Army Air Force deployed the first of a new bomber to the theatre. The B-29 Superfortress was complex, troubled, and hugely advanced. It was the most expensive weapons system of the war, and formidably capable. But at the time, no strategic bombing campaign had ever brought about a nation’s surrender. Not only that, but Japan was half a world away, and the US had no airfields even within the extraordinary range of the B-29. This analysis explains why the B-29s struggled at first, and how General LeMay devised radical and devastating tactics that began to systematically incinerate Japanese cities and industries and eliminate its maritime trade with aerial mining. It explains how and why this campaign was so uniquely successful, and how gaps in Japan’s defences contributed to the B-29s’ success.
Aviation history | PBK | $29.99
Operation Linebacker I 1972: the first high-tech air war (Air Campaign 8)
Michel III, Marshall & Tooby, Adam (illustrator)
At Easter 1972, North Vietnam invaded the South, and there were almost no US ground troops left to stop it. But air power reinforcements could be rushed to the theatre. Operation Linebacker’s objective was to destroy the invading forces from the air and cut North Vietnam’s supply routes – and luckily, in 1972, American air power was beginning a revolution in both technology and tactics. Most crucial was the introduction of the first effective laser-guided bombs, but the campaign also involved the fearsome AC-130 gunship and saw the debut of helicopter-mounted TOW missiles. Thanks to the new Top Gun fighter school, US naval aviators now also had a real advantage over the MiGs. This is the fascinating story of arguably the world’s first ‘modern’ air campaign. It explains how this complex operation – involving tactical aircraft, strategic bombers, close air support and airlift – defeated the invasion. It also explains the shortcomings of the campaign, the contrasting approaches of the USAF and Navy, and the impact that Linebacker had, on modern air warfare.
Aviation history | PBK | $29.99
How to Survive in the Georgian Navy: a Sailor’s Guide (general military)
Rigidly organised and harshly disciplined, the Georgian Royal Navy was an orderly and efficient fighting force which played a major role in Great Britain’s wars of the 18th and early-19th centuries. This concise book explores what it was like to be a sailor in the Georgian Navy – focusing on the period from 1714 to 1820, this book examines the Navy within its wider historical, national, organisational and military context, and reveals exactly what it took to survive a life in its service. It looks at how a seaman could join the Royal Navy, including the notorious ‘press gangs’; what was meant by ‘learning the ropes’; and the severe punishments that could be levied for even minor misdemeanours as a result of the Articles of War. Military tactics, including manning the guns and tactics for fending off pirates are also revealed, as is the problem of maintaining a healthy diet at sea – and the steps that sailors themselves could take to avoid the dreaded scurvy. Covering other fascinating topics as wide-ranging as exploration, mutiny, storms, shipwrecks, and women on board ships, this Sailor’s Guide explores the lives of the Navy’s officers and sailors, using extracts from contemporary documents and writings to reconstruct their experiences in vivid detail.
Naval history | HC | $19.99
The Total Skywatcher’s Manual: 275+ Skills and Tricks for Exploring Stars, Planets, and Beyond
Astronomical Society of the Pacific
For stargazers, comet-spotters and planet-seekers looking to enhance your deep sky knowledge and observations – this is your quintessential guide. The Total Skywatcher’s Manual will help you choose the best telescope, identify constellations and objects in the night sky, search for extra-terrestrial phenomena, plan star parties, capture beautiful space imagery and much more. With high-quality design, intricate detail, and a durable flexicover – this manual is the perfect gift! With fully-illustrated star charts, gorgeous astrophotography and step-by-step project instruction, this family friendly book is the only guide you’ll ever need to navigate the night sky. Learn about the phases of the moon; how to conduct your own deep-sky observations; how the universe is expanding; our search for life on other planets; meteors versus meteorites; sunspots and solar flares; best eclipse-viewing techniques – everything you need to know to appreciate the wonder of our universe. Based in San Francisco, the Astronomical Society of the Pacific has a 125-year history of providing resources, tools, and information to astronomy enthusiasts, including amateur astronomers, families, and science educators. Join the ASP on this journey through the night sky and beyond.
Astronomy | PBK | $24.99
From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage: How Australia Got Compulsory Voting
It’s compulsory to vote in Australia. We are one of a handful of countries in the world that enforce this rule at election time, and the only English-speaking country that makes its citizens vote. Not only that, we embrace it. We celebrate compulsory voting with barbeques and cake stalls at polling stations, and election parties that spill over into Sunday morning. But how did this come to be: when and why was voting in Australia made compulsory? How has this affected our politics? And how else is the way we vote different from other democracies? Lively and inspiring, From Secret Ballot to Democracy Sausage is a landmark account of the character of Australian democracy, by the celebrated historian Judith Brett, the prize-winning biographer of Alfred Deakin.
Politics/History | TP | $29.99
Professor Maxwell’s Duplicitous Demon: the Life and Science of James Clerk Maxwell
The great conundrum that has taxed the finest minds in physics. Asked to name a great physicist, most people would mention Newton… or Einstein, Feynman, or Hawking. But ask a physicist and there’s no doubt that James Clerk Maxwell will be near the top of the list. Maxwell, an unassuming Victorian Scotsman, explained how we perceive colour. He uncovered the way gases behave. And, most significantly, he transformed the way physics was undertaken in his explanation of the interaction of electricity and magnetism, revealing the nature of light and laying the groundwork for everything from Einstein’s special relativity to modern electronics. Along the way, he set up one of the most enduring challenges in physics, one that has taxed the best minds ever since. ‘Maxwell’s demon’ is a tiny but thoroughly disruptive thought experiment that suggests the second law of thermodynamics – the law that governs the flow of time, itself – can be broken. This is the story of a ground-breaking scientist, a great contributor to our understanding of the way the world works, and his duplicitous demon.
Science/Memoir | HC | $32.99
When the Dogs Don’t Bark: a Forensic Scientist’s Search for the Truth
Kathy Reichs meets Fragile Lives, in this fascinating and compelling memoir by one of the world’s leading forensic scientists, Professor Angela Gallop. The compelling memoir from the UK’s most eminent forensic scientist and some of the most fascinating criminal investigations she has worked on. ‘Finding the right answers is what forensic science is all about. What often matters even more, however, is asking the right questions.’ Never before has criminal justice rested so heavily on scientific evidence. With ever-more sophisticated and powerful techniques at their disposal, forensic scientists have an unprecedented ability to help solve even the most complex cases. Angela Gallop has been a forensic scientist for over 40 years. After joining the Forensic Science Service, the first crime scene she attended was for a case involving the Yorkshire Ripper. As well as working on a wide range of cases in many countries around the world, she is now the most sought-after forensic scientist in the UK, where she has helped solve numerous high-profile cases, including the investigation that finally absolved the Cardiff Three, the Pembrokeshire Coastal Path murders, and the killings of Stephen Lawrence, Damilola Taylor, Rachel Nickell, and Roberto Calvi. From the crime scene to the courtroom, When the Dogs Don’t Bark is the remarkable story of a life spent searching for the truth.
Memoir/Forensic science | TP | $29.99
Dresden: a Survivor’s Story, February 1945
In Slaughterhouse Five, Kurt Vonnegut fictionalised his time as a prisoner of war in Dresden in 1945. Vonnegut was imprisoned in a cellar, while the firestorm raged through the city, wiping out generations of innocent lives. Victor Gregg remained above ground, throughout the firebombing. This is his true eyewitness account of that week in February 1945. Already a seasoned soldier with the Rifle Brigade, Gregg joined the 10th Parachute Regiment in 1944. He was captured at Arnhem – where he volunteered to be sent to a work camp, rather than become another faceless number in the huge POW camps. With two failed escape attempts under his belt, Gregg was eventually caught sabotaging a factory and sent to Dresden for execution. Before Gregg could be executed, the British Royal Air Force and the United States Army Air Forces dropped more than 3,900 tons of high-explosive bombs and incendiary devices on Dresden in four air raids, over two days, in February 1945. The resulting firestorm destroyed six square miles of the city centre. Twenty-five thousand people, mostly civilians, were estimated to have been killed. Post-war discussion of whether or not the attacks were justified has led to the bombing becoming one of the moral questions of the Second World War. In Gregg’s first-hand narrative, personal and punchy, he describes the trauma and carnage of the Dresden bombing. After the raid, he spent five days helping to recover a city of innocent civilians, thousands of whom had died in the fire storm, trapped underground in human ovens. As order was restored, his life was once more in danger and he escaped to the east, spending the last weeks of the war with the Russians.
Wartime survivor account | PBK | $9.99
The Death of Democracy: Hitler’s Rise to Power
Hett, Benjamin Carter
What caused the fall of the most progressive government in twentieth-century Europe, and the rise of the most terrifying? In the 1930s, Germany was at a turning point, with many looking to the Nazi phenomenon as part of widespread resentment towards cosmopolitan liberal democracy and capitalism. This was a global situation that pushed Germany to embrace authoritarianism, nationalism and economic self-sufficiency, kick-starting a revolution founded on new media technologies, and the formidable political and self-promotional skills of its leader. Based on award-winning research and recently discovered archival material, The Death of Democracy is a panoramic new survey of one of the most important periods in modern history, and a book with a resounding message for the world, today.
History | PBK | $24.99
How to Hide an Empire: a Short History of the Greater United States
For a country that has always denied having dreams of empire, the United States owns a lot of overseas territory. America has always prided itself on being a champion of sovereignty and independence. We know it has spread its money, language, and culture across the world – but we still think of it as a contained territory, framed by Canada above, Mexico below, and oceans either side. Nothing could be further from the truth. How to Hide an Empire tells the story of the United States outside the United States – from nineteenth-century conquests like Alaska, Hawai’i, the Philippines and Puerto Rico, to the catalogue of islands, archipelagos and military bases – dotted around the globe – over which the Stars and Stripes flies. Many are thousands of miles from the mainland; all are central to its history. But the populations of these territories, despite being subject to America’s government, cannot vote for it; they have often fought America’s wars, but they do not enjoy the rights of full citizens. These forgotten episodes cast American history, and its present, in a revealing new light. The birth control pill, chemotherapy, plastic, Godzilla, the Beatles, the name America, itself – you can’t understand the histories of any of these, without understanding territorial empire. Full of surprises, and driven by an original conception of what empire and globalisation mean today, How to Hide an Empire is a major and compulsively readable work of history.
History/Colonialism and imperialism | TP | $35.00
100 Nasty Women of History
100 fascinating and brilliantly written stories about history’s bravest, baddest, but little known ‘nasty’ women from across the world. In the final debate of the 2016 US presidential election, Donald Trump leaned into the microphone as Hillary Clinton spoke about social security and called his opponent ‘such a nasty woman’. The phrase has stuck around and has since become something of a badge of honour, for women around the world. What better time than now, then, for us to look back and learn a thing or two from the ‘nasty’ women of the past? Compiled and written by BuzzFeed writer Hannah Jewell, 100 Nasty Women of History contains profiles of women from across every century, race and continent, united in the fact that they were all a bit ‘nasty’. From third-century Syrian queen Zenobia to 20th-century Nigerian women’s rights activist Funmilayo Ransome-Kuti, these are the women who were bold and powerful – but, maybe, put people (men’s) backs up by being so. 100 Nasty Women of History is an accessible, intelligent, hilarious (and, sometimes, sweary) guide to the history-making women, whom you probably don’t know – but definitely should.
Women’s history | PBK | $22.99
SAS: Italian Job – the Secret Mission to Storm a Forbidden Nazi Fortress
In the hard-fought winter of 1944, the Allies advanced northwards through Italy, but stalled on the fearsome mountainous defences of the Gothic Line. Two men were parachuted in, in an effort to break the deadlock. Their mission: to penetrate deep into enemy territory and lay waste to the Germans’ impregnable headquarters. At the eleventh hour, mission commanders radioed for David ‘The Mad Piper’ Kilpatrick to be flown in, resplendent in his tartan kilt. They wanted this fearless war hero to lead the assault, piping Highland Laddie as he went – so, leaving an indelible British signature to deter Nazi reprisals. As the column of raiders formed up, there was shocking news. High command radioed through an order to stand down, having assessed the chances of success at little more than zero. But, in defiance of orders, and come hell or high water, they were going in.
Military history | PBK | $22.99
The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind: a Memoir of Madness and Recovery
Lipska, Barbara K
Who are we if our brain fails? How do we think? How do we feel? How do we move, if we move at all? What happens, when we lose our mind? When renowned neuroscientist Barbara Lipska’s melanoma spread to her brain, it started to play tricks on her. The expert on mental illness – a specialist in how the brain operates – experienced what it is like to go mad. Analysing the science of the mind and the biology of the brain, alongside Dr Lipska’s own extraordinary story, this is a fascinating account of what happens when the brain goes awry.
Neuroscience/Memoir | PBK | $19.99
Zucked: Waking Up to the Facebook Catastrophe
This is the dramatic story of how a noted tech venture capitalist, an early mentor to Mark Zuckerberg and investor in his company, woke up to the serious damage Facebook was doing to our society and set out to try to stop it. If you had told Roger McNamee, three years ago, that he would soon be devoting himself to stopping Facebook from destroying democracy, he would have howled with laughter. He had mentored many tech leaders in his illustrious career as an investor, but few things had made him prouder, or been better for his fund’s bottom line, than his early service to Mark Zuckerberg. Still a large shareholder in Facebook, he had every good reason to stay on the bright side. Until he simply couldn’t. Zucked is McNamee’s intimate reckoning with the catastrophic failure of the head of one of the world’s most powerful companies to face up to the damage he is doing. It’s a story that begins with a series of rude awakenings. First, there is the author’s dawning realisation that the platform is being manipulated by some very bad actors. Then there is the even more unsettling realisation that Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg are unable or unwilling to share his concerns, polite as they may be to his face. And then comes Brexit and the election of Donald Trump, and the emergence of one horrific piece of news after another about the malign ends to which the Facebook platform has been put. To McNamee’s shock, Facebook’s leaders still duck and dissemble, viewing the matter as a public relations problem. Now thoroughly alienated, McNamee digs into the issue, and fortuitously meets up with some fellow travellers who share his concerns, and help him sharpen its focus. Soon, he and a dream team of Silicon Valley technologists are charging into the fray, to raise consciousness about the existential threat of Facebook, and the persuasion architecture of the attention economy more broadly – to our public health and to our political order. Zucked is both an enthralling personal narrative and a masterful explication of the forces that have conspired to place us all on the horns of this dilemma. This is the story of a company and its leadership, but it’s also a larger tale of a business sector unmoored from normal constraints, at a moment of political and cultural crisis, the worst possible time to be given new tools for summoning the darker angels of our nature and whipping them into a frenzy. This is a wise, hard-hitting, and urgently necessary account that crystallises the issue, definitively, for the rest of us.
Impact of technology | TP | $32.99
Cosmic Impact: Understanding the Threat to Earth from Asteroids and Comets
Is Earth really doomed to be destroyed by a cosmic catastrophe? As end-of-the-world scenarios go, an apocalyptic collision with an asteroid or comet is the new kid on the block, gaining respectability only in the last decade of the 20th century with the realisation that the dinosaurs had been wiped out, by just such an impact. Now, the science community is making up for lost time, with worldwide efforts to track the thousands of potentially hazardous near-Earth objects, and plans for high-tech hardware that could deflect an incoming object from a collision course – a procedure depicted, with little regard for scientific accuracy, in several Hollywood movies. Astrophysicist and science writer Andrew May disentangles fact from fiction in this fast-moving and entertaining account, covering the nature and history of comets and asteroids, the reason why some orbits are more hazardous than others, the devastating local and global effects that an impact event would produce, and – more optimistically – the way future space missions could avert a catastrophe.
Cosmology | PBK | $19.99
Elastic: the Power of Flexible Thinking
What do Pokémon Go and Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein have in common? Why do some businesses survive, and others fail at the first sign of change? What gives the human brain the edge over computers? The answer: Elastic Thinking. It’s an ability we all possess, and one that we can all learn to hone, in order to succeed – at work and in our everyday lives. Here, Mlodinow, whose own flexible thinking has taken him from physics professor to TV scriptwriter and bestselling author, takes us on a revelatory exploration of how elasticity works. He draws on cutting-edge neuroscience to show how, millennia ago, our brains developed an affinity for novelty. He discovers how flexible thinking enabled some of the greatest artists and innovators to create paradigm shifts. He investigates the organisations that have demonstrated an elastic ability to adapt to new technologies. And he shows you how you can test your brain power.
Psychology | PBK | $22.99
The Upright Thinkers: the Human Journey from Living in Trees to Understanding the Cosmos
This is the inspiring and illuminating story of how we have come to understand the world, from the invention of the very first tools to the mind-bending theories of quantum physics. Leonard Mlodinow guides us through the critical eras and events in the development of science, all of which, he demonstrates, were propelled forward by humankind’s collective struggle to know. From the birth of reasoning and culture to the formation of the studies of physics, chemistry, biology, and modern-day quantum physics, we come to see that much of our progress can be attributed to simple questions – Why? How? – bravely asked. Mlodinow profiles some of the great philosophers, scientists, and thinkers who explored these questions – Aristotle, Galileo, Newton, Darwin, Einstein, and Lavoisier, among them – and makes clear that just as science has played a key role in shaping the patterns of human thought, human subjectivity has played a key role in the evolution of science. At once authoritative and accessible, and infused with the author’s trademark wit, this deeply insightful book is a stunning tribute to humanity’s intellectual curiosity.
History of ideas | PBK | $24.99
How to Be Human: the Ultimate Guide to Your Amazing Existence
Everything you need to know about being human. If you thought you knew who you were, think again. Did you know that half your DNA isn’t human? That somebody, somewhere has exactly the same face? Or that most of your memories are fiction? What about the fact that you are as hairy as a chimpanzee, various parts of your body don’t belong to you, or that you can read other people’s minds? Do you really know why you blush, yawn and cry? Why ninety per cent of laughter has nothing to do with humour? Or what will happen to your mind, after you die? You belong to a unique, fascinating and often misunderstood species. How to Be Human is your guide to making the most of it.
Science | HC | $29.99
The Birth of the RAF: 1918: the World’s First Air Force
The dizzying pace of technological change in the early 20th century meant that it took only a little over ten years from the first flight by the Wright Brothers to the clash of fighter planes in the Great War. A period of terrible, rapid experiment followed to gain a brief technological edge. By the end of the war, the British had lost an extraordinary 36,000 aircraft and 16,600 airmen. The RAF was created, in 1918, as a revolutionary response to this new form of warfare – a highly contentious decision (resisted fiercely by both the army and navy, who had until then controlled all aircraft); but one which had the most profound impact, for good and ill, on the future of warfare. Richard Overy’s superb new book shows how this happened, against the backdrop of the first bombing raids against London and the constant emergency of the Western Front. The RAF’s origins were as much political as military and, throughout the 1920s, still provoked bitter criticism. Published to mark the centenary of its founding this is an invaluable book, filled with new and surprising material on this unique organisation.
Aviation history | PBK | $22.99
Humble Pi: a Comedy of Maths Errors
We would all be better off, if everyone saw mathematics as a practical ally. Sadly, most of us fear maths and seek to avoid it. This is because mathematics doesn’t have good ‘people skills’ – it never hesitates to bluntly point out when we are wrong. But it is only trying to help! Mathematics is a friend which can fill the gaps in what our brains can do naturally. Luckily, even though we don’t like sharing our own mistakes, we love to read about what happens when maths errors make the everyday go horribly wrong. Matt Parker explores and explains near misses and mishaps with planes, bridges, the internet, and big data as a way of showing us not only how important maths is, but how we can use it to our advantage. This comedy of errors is a brilliantly told series of disaster stories with a happy ending. Matt Parker, the brilliant stand-up mathematician (and the author of Things to Make and Do in the Fourth Dimension (PBK, $24.99)), shows us what happens, when maths goes wrong in the real world.
Mathematics | TP | $35.00
The Art of Civilised Conversation: a Guide to Expressing Yourself With Style and Grace
In our fast-paced, electronic society, the most basic social interaction – talking, face to face – can be a challenge, for even the most educated and self-assured individuals. And, yet, making conversation is a highly practical skill: those who do it well shine at networking parties, interviews, and business lunches. Good conversation also opens doors to a happier love life, warmer friendships, and more rewarding time with family. For those intimidated by the complexity of personal interaction, or those simply looking to polish their speaking skills, The Art of Civilised Conversation is a powerful guide to communicating in an endearing way. In its pages, author Margaret Shepherd offers opening lines, graceful apologies, thoughtful questions, and, ultimately, the confidence to take conversations beyond hello. From the basics – first impressions, appropriate subject matter, and graceful exits – to finding the right words for difficult situations, and an insightful discussion of body language, Shepherd uses her skilled eye and humorous anecdotes to teach readers how to turn a plain conversation into an engaging encounter.
Social graces | HC | $24.99
The Royal Society and the Invention of Modern Science
The story of a British institution whose fellows, including Newton, Darwin, and Hawking, have changed the way we look at the world. The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge has been at the forefront of scientific endeavour for more than 350 years, since receiving its royal charter from Charles II in 1662. Philosophical Transactions, published in 1665, established the concepts of scientific priority and peer review and is the oldest scientific journal in continuous publication in the world. The 8,000 fellows elected to the Society, to date, include all of the scientific leading lights of the last four centuries, including Isaac Newton, Charles Darwin, Tim Berners-Lee and Stephen Hawking. The Society’s motto, nullius in verba – ‘on the word of no one’ – is a reminder of its founders’ belief that authority must always be questioned; hypotheses can never be taken for granted; truths must be demonstrated, or they are not truths at all. Adrian Tinniswood examines why the Royal Society has been such a pivotal institution in the cultural life of Britain and the world.
History/Science | HC | $35.00
And the Weak Suffer What They Must? Europe, Austerity and the Threat to Global Stability
A spectre is haunting Europe – the spectre of failed capitalism. In this startling account of Europe’s economic rise and catastrophic fall, Yanis Varoufakis pinpoints the flaws in the European Union’s design – a design that was thought up after the Second World War, and is responsible for Europe’s fragmentation and the resurgence of racist extremism across the Continent. When the financial crisis struck in 2008, the political elite’s response ensured that it would be the weakest citizens of the weakest nations that would pay the price for the bankers’ mistakes. Drawing on his personal experience of negotiations with the Eurozone’s financiers, and offering concrete policies to reform Europe, Varoufakis shows how we concocted this mess, and points the way out of it. And the Weak Suffer What They Must? reminds us of our history, in order to save European capitalism and democracy from the abyss.
Economics/Democracy | PBK | $22.99
Talking to My Daughter About the Economy: a Brief History of Capitalism
‘Why is there so much inequality?’ Xenia asks her father, the world-famous economist Yanis Varoufakis. Drawing on memories of her childhood and a variety of well-known tales – from Oedipus and Faust to Frankenstein and The Matrix – Varoufakis explains everything you need to know, in order to understand why economics is the most important drama of our times. In answering his daughter’s deceptively simple questions, Varoufakis disentangles our troubling world with remarkable clarity, while inspiring us to make it a better one.
Economics | PBK | $22.99
The Uninhabitable Earth: a Story of the Future
The signs of climate change are unmistakable even today, but the real transformations have hardly begun. We’ve been taught that warming would be slow – but, barring very dramatic action, each of these impacts is likely to arrive within the length of a new mortgage, signed this year. What will it be like to live on a pummelled planet? What will it do to our politics, our economy, our culture and sense of history? And what explains the fact we have done so little to stop it? These are not abstract questions but immediate and pressing human dramas, dilemmas and nightmares. In The Uninhabitable Earth, David Wallace-Wells undertakes a new kind of storytelling and a new kind of social science to explore the era of human history on which we have just embarked.
Climate change | TP | $
The Face Pressed Against a Window: a Memoir
Tim Waterstone is one of Britain’s most successful businessmen, having built the Waterstones empire that started with one bookshop, in 1982. In this charming and evocative memoir, he recalls the childhood experiences that led him to become an entrepreneur and outlines the business philosophy that allowed Waterstones to dominate the bookselling business throughout the country. Tim explores his formative years in a small town in rural England, at the end of the Second World War; and the troubled relationship he had with his father. Before moving on to the epiphany he had, while studying at Cambridge, which set him on the road to Waterstone’s and gave birth to the creative strategy that made him a high-street name. Candid and moving, The Face Pressed Against a Window charts the life of one of our most celebrated business leaders.
Bookseller memoir | HC | $39.99
The Age of Surveillance Capitalism: the Fight for the Future at the New Frontier of Power
Society is at a turning point. The heady optimism that accompanied the advent of the Internet has gone, replaced with a deep unease as technology, capitalism and an unequal society combine to create the perfect storm. Tech companies are gathering our information online and selling it to the highest bidder, whether government or retailer. In this world of surveillance capitalism, profit depends not only on predicting but modifying our online behaviour. How will this fusion of capitalism and the digital shape the values that define our future? Shoshana Zuboff shows that at this critical juncture we have a choice, the power to decide what kind of world we want to live in. We can choose whether to allow the power of technology to enrich the few and impoverish the many, or harness it for the wider distribution of capitalism’s social and economic benefits. What we decide over the next decade will shape the rest of the twenty-first century. Exploring the social, political, business and technological meaning of the changes taking place in our time, The Age of Surveillance Capitalism tackles the threat of an unprecedented power, free from democratic oversight, and shows how we can protect ourselves and our communities. This is a deeply reasoned examination of the contests over the next chapter of capitalism that will decide the meaning of information civilisation. The stark issue at hand is whether we will be masters of the digital, or its slaves.
Technology/Economics | HC | $49.99