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Career Online High School summer reading

Notable New Nonfiction: July 2017

Here are some highlights from the new nonfiction titles added to the catalog recently.

Find more reading suggestions at Books & More.

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Make a Scene: Writing a Powerful Story One Scene at a Time by Jordan Rosenfeld

Scenes are the building blocks for any work of fiction--the DNA sequence that makes a novel un-put-downable and unforgettable. When writers are able to craft effective, engaging scenes, they can develop a complete, cohesive story--and a mesmerizing experience for readers. Make a Scene Revised and Expanded Edition takes you step-by-step through the elements of strong scene construction and demonstrates how the essential aspects of a compelling story--including character, plot and dramatic tension--function within the framework of individual scenes to give momentum to the whole narrative. You'll learn how to craft an opening scene that hooks readers and foreshadows conflict; develop various scene types--from contemplative to suspenseful to flashback--that are distinct and purposeful; establish characters' intentions within a scene that drive the plot; transition into new scenes by clearly establishing details of setting, character, and point of view; create resonating climactic and final scenes that stay with readers long after they've finished your story.

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When Doing the Right Thing is Impossible by Lisa Tessman

Human life sometimes presents us with impossible moral decisions. These choices and case studies that demonstrate them form the focus of Lisa Tessman's arresting and provocative work. Many philosophers believe that there are simply no situations in which what you morally ought to do is something that you can't do, because they think that you can't be required to do something unless it's actually in your power to do it. Despite this, real life presents us daily with situations in which we feel that we have failed morally even when no right action would have been possible. Lisa Tessman boldly argues that sometimes we feel this way because we have encountered an 'impossible moral requirement.' Drawing on philosophy, empirical psychology, and evolutionary theory, When Doing the Right Thing Is Impossible explores how and why human beings have constructed moral requirements to be binding even when they are impossible to fulfill.

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In the Days of Rain: A Daughter, a Father, a Cult by Rebecca Stott

In the Days of Rain is Rebecca Stott’s attempt to make sense of her childhood in the Exclusive Brethren, a cult that believed the world is ruled by Satan. In this closed community, books that didn’t conform to the sect’s rules were banned, women were subservient to men and were made to dress modestly and cover their heads, and those who disobeyed the rules were punished and shamed. She tries to understand her father’s role in the cult and in the breaking apart of her family, and to be at peace with her relationship with a larger-than-life figure whose faults were matched by a passion for life, a thirst for knowledge, and a love of literature and beauty. A father-daughter story as well as a memoir of growing up in a closed-off community and then finding a way out of it, this is an inspiring and beautiful account of the bonds of family and the power of self-invention.

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Angel: How to Invest in Technology Startups by Jason Calacanis

Over the past 25 years, Jason Calacanis has made a fortune investing in creators, spotting and helping build and fund a number of successful technology startups—investments that have earned him tens of millions of dollars. Now, in this enlightening guide that is sure to become the bible for twenty-first century investors, Calacanis takes potential angels step-by-step through his proven method of creating massive wealth: startups. As Calacanis makes clear, you can get rich—even if you came from humble beginnings. The trick is learning how angel investors think. Calacanis takes you inside the minds of these successful moneymen, helping you understand how they prioritize and make the decisions that have resulted in phenomenal profits. He guides you step by step through the process, revealing how leading investors evaluate new ventures, calculating the risks and rewards, and explains how the best startups leverage relationships with angel investors for the best results.

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Putin: His Downfall and Russia's Coming Crash by Richard Lourie

An electrifying and timely book, by leading Russian expert Richard Lourie, that explores Putin's failures and whether Trump's election gives Putin extraordinarily dangerous opportunities in our mad new world. For reasons that are made clear in this book, Putin’s Russia will collapse just as Imperial Russia did in 1917 and as Soviet Russia did in 1991. The only questions are when, how violently, and with how much peril for the world. The U.S. election complicates everything, including: · Putin’s next land grab · Exploitations of the Arctic · Cyber-espionage · Putin and China …and many more crucial topics.

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Modern Homesteading by Living the Country Life

An accessible guide for the aspiring modern homesteader from the craftsmen at Living the Country Life magazine. Grow your own crops, raise backyard animals, and preserve your bounty for the winter months and beyond. Once upon a time, people had a real connection with the land. Instead of being mere consumers, they were producers and makers. Traditional skills were learned to eliminate a reliance on others, enabling the self-sufficiency that’s at the heart of the Do-It-Yourself movement. And this artisanal wisdom was passed on to family and friends. Whether you’re raising urban chickens behind your Brooklyn brownstone or feeding your family from a front-yard organic veggie plot, this book can bring a little self-sufficiency into any life.

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Strays: A Lost Cat, a Drifter, and Their Journey Across America by Britt Collins

For fans of A Street Cat Named Bob and Dewey: The Small-Town Library Cat Who Touched the World, Strays is a compelling true story of a man who rescues a stray, injured cat and how they save each other. Homeless, alcoholic, and depressed, Michael King lives in a UPS loading bay on the wrong side of the tracks in Portland, Oregon. One rainy night, he stumbles upon a hurt, starving, scruffy cat and takes her in. Nursing her back to health, he names her Tabor and she becomes a bit of a celebrity in southeast Portland. When winter comes, they travel from Oregon to the beaches of California to the high plains of Montana, surviving blizzards and bears, angry steers and rainstorms. Tabor comforts Michael when he’s down, giving Michael someone to love and care for, and inspiring him to get sober and to come to terms with his past family traumas and grief over the death of his life partner. But when Michael takes Tabor to a veterinarian in Montana, he discovers that Tabor has an identification chip and an owner in Portland who has never given up hope of finding his beloved cat, Michael makes the difficult choice to return to Portland and reunite Tabor with her owner. Now Michael must create a new purpose in his life after Tabor.

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Roots, Radicals and Rockers: How Skiffle Changed the World by Billy Bragg

ROOTS, RADICALS AND ROCKERS is the first book to explore the Skiffle phenomenon in depth — Billy Bragg’s meticulously researched and joyous account shows how Skiffle sparked a revolution that shaped pop music as we have come to know it. Like punk rock that would flourish two decades later, skiffle was home grown: all you needed were three guitar chords and you could form a group, with mates playing tea-chest bass and washboard as a rhythm section. Skiffle — a “do-it-yourself” music craze with American jazz, blues, folk, and roots influences — is a story of jazz pilgrims and blues blowers, Teddy Boys and beatnik girls, coffee-bar bohemians and refugees from the McCarthyite witch hunts. Skiffle is reason the guitar came to the forefront of music in the UK and led directly to the British Invasion of the US charts in the 1960s.

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Have Black Lives Ever Mattered? by Mumia Abu-Jamal

In Have Black Lives Ever Mattered?, Mumia gives voice to the many people of color who have fallen to police bullets or racist abuse, and offers the post-Ferguson generation advice on how to address police abuse in the United States. Applying a personal, historical, and political lens, Mumia provides a righteously angry and calmly principled radical black perspective on how racist violence is tearing our country apart and what must be done to turn things around.

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The Invention of Celebrity: 1750-1850 by Antoine Lilti

Frequently perceived as a characteristic of modern culture, the phenomenon of celebrity has much older roots. In this book Antoine Lilti shows that the mechanisms of celebrity were developed in Europe during the Enlightenment, well before films, yellow journalism, and television, and then flourished during the Romantic period on both sides of the Atlantic. Figures from across the arts like Voltaire, Garrick, and Liszt were all veritable celebrities in their time, arousing curiosity and passionate loyalty from their “fans.” The rise of the press, new advertising techniques, and the marketing of leisure brought a profound transformation in the visibility of celebrities: private lives were now very much on public show. Nor was politics spared this cultural upheaval: Marie-Antoinette, George Washington, and Napoleon all experienced a political world transformed by the new demands of celebrity.

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Confessions of a Cartel Hit Man by Martin Corona

The true confession of an assassin, a sicario, who rose through the ranks of the Southern California gang world to become a respected leader in an elite, cruelly efficient crew of hit men for Mexico's "most vicious drug cartel," and eventually found a way out and an (almost) normal life.

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Castle of the Eagles: Escape from Mussolini's Colditz by Mark Felton

Vincigliata Castle, a menacing medieval fortress set in the beautiful Tuscan hills, has become a very special prisoner of war camp on Benito Mussolini’s personal order. Within are some of the most senior officers of the Allied army, guarded by almost two hundred Italian soldiers and a vicious fascist commando who answers directly to “Il Duce” Mussolini himself. Their unbelievable escape, told by Mark Felton in Castle of the Eagles, is a little-known marvel of World War II.