What’s HOT: Top 10 Nonfiction Titles at the Library Right Now (April 2016)

brieflessonsinphysics

1.) Seven Brief Lessons on Physics by Carlo Rovelli

‘Here, on the edge of what we know, in contact with the ocean of the unknown, shines the mystery and the beauty of the world. And it’s breathtaking’

These seven short lessons guide us, with simplicity and clarity, through the scientific revolution that shook physics in the twentieth century and still continues to shake us today. In this beautiful and mind-bending introduction to modern physics, Carlo Rovelli explains Einstein’s theory of general relativity, quantum mechanics, black holes, the complex architecture of the universe, elementary particles, gravity, and the nature of the mind. In under eighty pages, readers will understand the most transformative scientific discoveries of the twentieth century and what they mean for us. Not since Richard Feynman’s celebrated best-seller Six Easy Pieces has physics been so vividly, intelligently and entertainingly revealed.

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whenbreathbecomesair.jpg2.) When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with inoperable lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, the next he was a patient struggling to live.

When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a medical student asking what makes a virtuous and meaningful life into a neurosurgeon working in the core of human identity – the brain – and finally into a patient and a new father.

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when when life is catastrophically interrupted? What does it mean to have a child as your own life fades away?

Paul Kalanithi died while working on this profoundly moving book, yet his words live on as a guide to us all. When Breath Becomes Air is a life-affirming reflection on facing our mortality and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a gifted writer who became both.

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cookitincastiron3.) Cook it in Cast Iron: Kitchen Tested Recipes for the One Pan that Does it All

The cast-iron skillet is experiencing a comeback in kitchen all over the country and the test kitchen is no different. This consummate kitchen workhorse and multitasker is sturdy and versatile, an essential tool for recipes of all kinds. Let the cooks at America’s Test Kitchen show you how to make over 120 dishes in this magical pan, from classic cast iron dishes everyone knows and loves to innovative and surprising recipes that will inspire you to reach for cast iron more often in your home kitchen.

If you could only own one pan, you should make it a cast-iron skillet. This inexpensive, timeless pan is an excellent conductor of heat and will not only cook your food evenly, it will produce an enviable crust on steaks, roast chicken, pizza, cornbread, and more.  In this new cookbook, the editors of Cook’s Countrymagazine will show you everything you need to know about cast-iron cookware and the endless (and often surprising) dishes you can cook and bake in this versatile pan. Learn about the history of cast-iron and what makes this pan uniquely American; let us show you how to shop for, season, care for, and clean cast-iron; stop underestimating this unassuming tool and see what cast iron can do in your kitchen. Discover solutions to common cast-iron cooking challenges like skillets that become stinky or sticky; stir-fries, eggs, and fish that won’t release from the pan; and delicate foods that burn before they cook through. Surprising recipes include pizza, cakes, skillet pies, pasta, artisan breads, and more. Full-color photos of every recipe show you exactly how your dish will turn out and reference photos guide you every step of the way.

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thestonereader.jpg4.) The Stone Reader: Modern Philosophy in 133 Arguments

Once solely the province of ivory-tower professors and college classrooms, contemporary philosophy was finally emancipated from its academic closet in 2010, when The Stone was launched in The New York Times. First appearing as an online series, the column quickly attracted millions of readers through its accessible examination of universal topics like the nature of science, consciousness and morality, while also probing more contemporary issues such as the morality of drones, gun control and the gender divide.

Now collected for the first time in this handsomely designed volume, The Stone Reader presents 133 meaningful and influential essays from the series, placing nearly the entirety of modern philosophical discourse at a reader’s grasp. The book, divided into four broad sections—Philosophy, Science, Religion and Morals, and Society—opens with a series of questions about the scope, history and identity of philosophy: What are the practical uses of philosophy? Does the discipline, begun in the West in ancient Greece with Socrates, favor men and exclude women? Does the history and study of philosophy betray a racial bias against non-white thinkers, or geographical bias toward the West?

These questions and others form a foundation for readers as the book moves to the second section, Science, where some of our most urgent contemporary philosophical debates are taking place. Will artificial intelligence compromise our morality? Does neuroscience undermine our free will? Is there is a legitimate place for the humanities in a world where science and technology appear to rule? Should the evidence for global warming change the way we live, or die?

In the book’s third section, Religion and Morals, we find philosophy where it is often at its best, sharpest and most disturbing—working through the arguments provoked by competing moral theories in the face of real-life issues and rigorously addressing familiar ethical dilemmas in a new light. Can we have a true moral life without belief in God? What are the dangers of moral relativism?

In its final part, Society, The Stone Reader returns to its origins as a forum to encourage philosophers who are willing to engage closely, critically and analytically with the affairs of the day, including economic inequality, technology and racial discrimination. In directly confronting events like the September 11 attacks, the killing of Trayvon Martin, the Sandy Hook School massacre, the essays here reveal the power of philosophy to help shape our viewpoints on nearly every issue we face today.

With an introduction by Peter Catapano that details the column’s founding and distinct editorial process at The New York Times, and prefatory notes to each section by Simon Critchley,The Stone Reader promises to become not only an intellectual landmark but also a confirmation that philosophy is, indeed, for everyone.

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quinoa.jpg

5.) We Love Quinoa: Fresh and Healthy Inspiring Recipes by Karen S. Burns-Booth

Home cooks continue to look for healthy options to serve their families, and superfoods like quinoa have been at the top of the list for the last few years. Quinoa is a complete protein (it contains all of the essential amino acids) and is packed with nutrients, making it popular particularly among vegetarians and vegans, as well as those trying to eat less meat. Plus it’s gluten-free, so it has found a home with those who have a gluten sensitivity.

In We Love Quinoa, food and healthy lifestyle bloggers with a passion for creating healthful recipes share their delicious recipes for quinoa, from snacks and drinks to salads, soups, mains, desserts, and more. Beautifully designed with 100 simple recipes, We Love Quinoa is the perfect companion for anyone looking to boost their diet with the powerful goodness that quinoa provides.

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fixitandforgetit6.) Fix-It and Forget-It Baking with your Slow Cooker: 150 Recipes for Breads, Pizza, Cakes, Tarts, Crisps, Bars, Pies, Cupcakes, and more! by Phyllis Good

You knew that slow cookers make delicious soups and stews, but did you know that they also make soft and chewy cookies, gooey bars, fluffy cakes, and moist breads? The beloved Fix-It and Forget-It series has sold nearly eleven million copies, giving home cooks around the world exactly what they crave—recipes for delicious, satisfying meals that anyone can make with simple ingredients and minimal preparation time. Now, New York Times–bestselling author Phyllis Good presents a collection that gives cooks an unexpected treat—fabulous baked goods!

Featuring 150 new, mouthwatering recipes—all carefully tested—this will be the go-to book for bake sales, last-minute guests, holiday baking, and everyday treats!

Fix-It and Forget-It Baking with Your Slow Cooker is a big, full-color, useful cookbook that, in addition to recipes, offers tips and tricks for baking with your slow cooker, FAQs, suggestions for substituting common allergen ingredients, and more.

Skyhorse Publishing, along with our Good Books and Arcade imprints, is proud to publish a broad range of cookbooks, including books on juicing, grilling, baking, frying, home brewing and winemaking, slow cookers, and cast iron cooking. We’ve been successful with books on gluten-free cooking, vegetarian and vegan cooking, paleo, raw foods, and more. Our list includes French cooking, Swedish cooking, Austrian and German cooking, Cajun cooking, as well as books on jerky, canning and preserving, peanut butter, meatballs, oil and vinegar, bone broth, and more. While not every title we publish becomes a New York Times bestseller or a national bestseller, we are committed to books on subjects that are sometimes overlooked and to authors whose work might not otherwise find a home.

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amothersreckoning7.) A Mother’s Reckoning: Living in the Aftermath of Tragedy by Sue Klebold

On April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold walked into Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado. Over the course of minutes, they would kill twelve students and a teacher and wound twenty-four others before taking their own lives.

For the last sixteen years, Sue Klebold, Dylan’s mother, has lived with the indescribable grief and shame of that day. How could her child, the promising young man she had loved and raised, be responsible for such horror? And how, as his mother, had she not known something was wrong? Were there subtle signs she had missed? What, if anything, could she have done differently?

These are questions that Klebold has grappled with every day since the Columbine tragedy. In A Mother’s Reckoning, she chronicles with unflinching honesty her journey as a mother trying to come to terms with the incomprehensible. In the hope that the insights and understanding she has gained may help other families recognize when a child is in distress, she tells her story in full, drawing upon her personal journals, the videos and writings that Dylan left behind, and on countless interviews with mental health experts.

Filled with hard-won wisdom and compassion, A Mother’s Reckoning is a powerful and haunting book that sheds light on one of the most pressing issues of our time. And with fresh wounds from the recent Newtown and Charleston shootings, never has the need for understanding been more urgent.

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andthenallhellbrokeloose.jpg8.) And Then All Hell Broke Loose: Two Decades in the Middle East by Richard Engel

Based on two decades of reporting, NBC’s chief foreign correspondent’s riveting story of the Middle East revolutions, the Arab Spring, war, and terrorism seen up-close—sometimes dangerously so.

When he was just twenty-three, a recent graduate of Stanford University, Richard Engel set off to Cairo with $2,000 and dreams of being a reporter. Shortly thereafter he was working freelance for Arab news sources and got a call that a busload of Italian tourists were massacred at a Cairo museum. This is his first view of the carnage these years would pile on. Over two decades Engel has been under fire, blown out of hotel beds, taken hostage. He has watched Mubarak and Morsi in Egypt arrested and condemned, reported from Jerusalem, been through the Lebanese war, covered the whole shooting match in Iraq, interviewed Libyan rebels who toppled Gaddafi, reported from Syria as Al-Qaeda stepped in, was kidnapped in the Syrian crosscurrents of fighting. He goes into Afghanistan with the Taliban and to Iraq with ISIS. In the page-turning And Then All Hell Broke Loose, he shares his adventure tale.

Engel takes chances, though not reckless ones, keeps a level head and a sense of humor, as well as a grasp of history in the making. Reporting as NBC’s Chief-Foreign Correspondent, he reveals his unparalleled access to the major figures, the gritty soldiers, and the helpless victims in the Middle East during this watershed time. We can experience the unforgettable suffering and despair of the local populations. Engel’s vivid description is intimate and personal. Importantly, it is a succinct and authoritative account of the ever-changing currents in that dangerous land.

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apostle9.) Apostle, or Bones that Shine Like Fire: Travels Among the Tombs of the Twelve by Tom Bissell

A profound and moving journey into the heart of Christianity that explores the mysterious and often paradoxical lives and legacies of the Twelve Apostles—a book both for those of the faith and for others who seek to understand Christianity from the outside in.

Peter, Matthew, Thomas, John: Who were these men? What was their relationship to Jesus? Tom Bissell provides rich and surprising answers to these ancient, elusive questions. He examines not just who these men were (and weren’t), but also how their identities have taken shape over the course of two millennia.

Ultimately, Bissell finds that the story of the apostles is the story of early Christianity: its competing versions of Jesus’s ministry, its countless schisms, and its ultimate evolution from an obscure Jewish sect to the global faith we know today in all its forms and permutations. In his quest to understand the underpinnings of the world’s largest religion, Bissell embarks on a years-long pilgrimage to the supposed tombs of the Twelve Apostles. He travels from Jerusalem and Rome to Turkey, Greece, Spain, France, India, and Kyrgyzstan, vividly capturing the rich diversity of Christianity’s worldwide reach. Along the way, he engages with a host of characters—priests, paupers, a Vatican archaeologist, a Palestinian taxi driver, a Russian monk—posing sharp questions that range from the religious to the philosophical to the political.

Written with warmth, empathy, and rare acumen, Apostle is a brilliant synthesis of travel writing, biblical history, and a deep, lifelong relationship with Christianity. The result is an unusual, erudite, and at times hilarious book—a religious, intellectual, and personal adventure fit for believers, scholars, and wanderers alike.

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dinnerpies10.) Dinner Pies: From Shepherd’s Pies and Pot Pies to Tarts, Turnovers, Quiches, Hand Pies, and More, with 100 Delectable & Foolproof Recipes by Ken Haedrich

Dinner Pies includes 100 recipes for two-crust, one-crust, and no-crust pies. As a recognized master in the art of making pies, Ken Haedrich includes updated and perfected versions from the great savory pie traditions, including British, New England Yankee, and Southern ­- recipes for classics including cottage pie, shepherd’s pie and a best-ever chicken pot pie. But, as a world-eater and expert baker, Haedrich doesn’t stop there. The remaining recipes span a variety of diverse cuisines, including French, Italian, Mexican, Spanish, Scandinavian, Middle Eastern and South African savory pies, among others.

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About Avalon Free Public Library

Avalon is a bustling little shore town in southern NJ. Our small population of 1800 expands to about 30,000 at the height of summer. We like to think that we serve them all and then some! Our goal is to make our library available to our patrons wherever they may roam.

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