Tag Archives: science

Spare Parts

Spare Parts

Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Paperback
240 pages • $14.00
ISBN: 9780374534981
ebook icon
audiobook icon

Los Inventores
Spanish Language Edition
Paperback
224 pages • $14.00
ISBN: 9780374284503

Four Undocumented Teenagers, One Ugly Robot, and the Battle for the American Dream

Joshua Davis

Finalist for the J. Anthony Lukas Book Prize

Spare Parts illuminates the human side of two polarizing political issues: immigration and education.”

The Washington Post

In 2004, four undocumented Latino teenagers arrived at the Marine Advanced Technology Education Robotics Competition at the University of California, Santa Barbara. No one had ever suggested to Oscar, Cristian, Luis, or Lorenzo that they might amount to much—but two inspiring science teachers had convinced these kids from the desert who had never even seen the ocean that they should try to build an underwater robot. They were going up against some of the best collegiate engineers in the country, including a team from MIT. This was never a level competition, and yet, against all odds . . . they won! But this is just the beginning for these four, whose story will go on to include first-generation college graduations, deportation, bean-picking in Mexico, and service in Afghanistan. Joshua Davis’s Spare Parts is a story about overcoming insurmountable odds and four young men who proved they were among the most patriotic and talented Americans in this country—even as the country tried to kick them out.

Spare Parts is an unforgettable tale of hope and human ingenuity. Joshua Davis offers a moving testament to how teamwork, perseverance, and a few good teachers can lift up and empower even the humblest among us.”—Héctor Tobar, author of Deep Down Dark

“It’s the most American of stories: how determination and ingenuity can bring triumph over long odds. There are too few stories like these written about Latino students. Poignant and beautifully told, Spare Parts makes you feel their frustration at the obstacles and indignities faced by Cristian, Lorenzo, Luis, and Oscar—and to cheer as they rise to overcome each one of them.”—Sonia Nazario, author of Enrique’s Journey 

“This is important reading . . . Young adults will benefit from from reading and discussing this realistic, eye-opening chronicle . . . Davis pulls no punches as he describes the grim sociopolitical atmosphere that allows the oppression of talented people for no morally acceptable reason. The four young inventors and their struggles helped spur the DREAMers movement.”—Donna Chavez, Booklist (starred review)

“A gratifying human interest story that calls attention to the plight and promise of America’s undocumented youth.”Library Journal

“Davis takes what could have been another feel-good story of triumphant underdogs and raises the stakes by examining the difficulties of these young immigrants in the context of the societal systems that they briefly and temporarily overcame.”Publishers Weekly

Joshua Davis © Sebastian Mlynarski

© Sebastian Mlynarski

Joshua Davis is a contributing editor at Wired, co-founder of Epic magazine, and the author of The Underdog, a memoir about his experiences as an arm wrestler, backward runner, and matador. He has also written for The New Yorker, and his writing is anthologized in The Best American Science and Nature Writing and The Best Technology Writing. He lives in San Francisco, California.

Spare Parts has been adopted for more than forty First-Year Experience programs:

Alamo Heights High School (TX); Broward College (FL); The Browning School (NY); California State University – Los Angeles; Cedar Valley College (TX); Chemeketa Community College (OR); Concordia University (TX); Des Moines Area Community College (IA); Hesston College (KS); Hood College (MD); Johns Hopkins University (MD); Kansas State University; Lafayette Public Library and School District (LA); Lewis University (IL); Metropolitan Community College – Maple Woods (MO); Miami University (OH); Monroe Community College (NY); Naugatuck Valley Community College (CT); Nash Community College (NC); North Iowa Area Community College; North Lake College (TX); Norwalk Community College (CT); Oakland University, The Honors College (MI); Pasadena City College (CA); Providence College (RI); Queensborough Community College (NY); Rutgers University, Honors College (NJ); Sacramento State University (CA); Salem State University (MA); Santa Ana College; San Jose State University (CA); Stevens Institute of Technology (NJ); Stony Brook University (NY); Texas A&M University; University of Alaska – Southeast; University of Houston – Clear Lake (TX); University of North Carolina – Charlotte; University of Virginia School of Engineering and Applied Science; University of Michigan College of Engineering; Washington State University, Vancouver; Winthrop University (SC)

Continue reading

Footprints

Footprints

Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Hardcover
320 pages • $27.00
ISBN: 9780374157333
ebook icon

In Search of Future Fossils

David Farrier

Available in March 2020

In Footprints, the award-winning author David Farrier explores the traces we will leave for the very distant future. Modern civilization has created objects and landscapes with the potential to endure through deep time, whether it is plastic polluting the oceans and nuclear waste sealed within the earth or the 30 million miles of roads spanning the planet. Our carbon could linger in the atmosphere for 100,000 years, and the remains of our cities will still exist millions of years from now as a layer in the rock. These future fossils have the potential to reveal much about how we lived in the twenty-first century. Crossing the boundaries of literature, art, and science, Footprints invites us to think about how we will be remembered in the myths and stories of our distant descendants. Traveling from the Baltic Sea to the Great Barrier Reef, and from an ice-core laboratory in Tasmania to Shanghai, one of the world’s biggest cities, Farrier describes a world that is changing rapidly, with consequences beyond the scope of human understanding. As much a message of hope as a warning, Footprints will not only alter how you think about the future; it will change how you see the world today.

Farrier David

© Anneleen Lindsay

David Farrier teaches at the University of Edinburgh. In 2017, Footprints won the Royal Society of Literature’s Giles St Aubyn Award for Non-Fiction. He lives in Edinburgh, Scotland.

In Shock

In Shock

Picador
Paperback
272 pages • $18.00
ISBN: 9781250293770
ebook icon

My Journey From Death to Recovery and the Redemptive Power of Hope

Dr. Rana Awdish

“Awdish’s journey from physician to helpless patient and then back to reformed physician is equal parts dramatic, engaging and instructive.”

The New York Times Book Review

Dr. Rana Awdish never imagined that an emergency trip to the hospital would result in hemorrhaging nearly all of her blood volume and losing her unborn first child. But after her first visit, Dr. Awdish spent months fighting for her life, enduring consecutive major surgeries and experiencing multiple overlapping organ failures. At each step of the recovery process, she was faced with something even more unexpected: repeated cavalier behavior from her fellow physicians—indifference following human loss, disregard for anguish and suffering, and an exacting emotional distance. In Shock allows the reader to transform alongside Dr. Awidsh and watch what she discovers in our carefully-cultivated, yet often misguided, standard of care. She comes to understand the fatal flaws in her profession and in her own past actions as a physician while achieving, through unflinching presence, a crystalline vision of a new and better possibility for us all. As Dr. Awdish finds herself up against the same self-protective partitions she was trained to construct as a medical student and physician, she artfully illuminates the dysfunction of disconnection. Shatteringly personal, and yet wholly universal, she offers a brave road map for anyone
navigating illness while presenting physicians with a new paradigm and rationale for embracing the emotional bond between doctor and patient.

Rana Awdish

© Rana Awdish

Dr. Rana Awdish is the Director of the Pulmonary Hypertension Program at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan, and a critical care physician. She was recently named Medical Director of Care Experience for the Henry Ford Health System. She was awarded the Speak-Up Hero Award for her work on improving communication, as well as the Critical Care Teaching Award.

In Shock has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:

Medical College of Wisconsin; Vanderbilt University’s School of Medicine (TN)

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now

Picador
Paperback
176 pages • $13.00
ISBN: 9781250239082
ebook icon
audiobook icon

Jaron Lanier

With a New Afterword

“Lanier shows the tactical value of appealing to the conscience of the individual . . . I heeded his plea and deleted my account.”

The New York Times Book Review

You might have trouble imagining life without your social media accounts, but virtual reality pioneer Jaron Lanier insists that we’re better off without them. Part manifesto, part toolbox for liberation, Lanier’s important new book offers ten powerful and personal reasons for everyone to leave these dangerous online platforms behind before it’s too late. Social media’s poisonous grip brings out the worst in us, makes politics terrifying, tricks us with illusions of popularity and success, twists our relationship with the truth, disconnects us from other people even as we are more “connected” than ever, and robs us of our free will with relentless targeted ads. How can we remain autonomous in a world where we are under continual surveillance? How could the “benefits” of social media possibly outweigh the catastrophic losses to our personal dignity, happiness, and freedom? Yet Lanier remains a technology optimist. While demonstrating the evil that rules social media business models today, he also envisions a humanistic setting for social networking that can direct us toward a richer and fuller way of living and connecting with our world.

Jaron Lanier

© John Naughton

Jaron Lanier is a scientist, musician, and writer best known for his work in virtual reality and his advocacy of humanism and sustainable economics in a digital context. His 1980s start-up VPL Research created the first commercial VR products and introduced avatars, multiperson virtual world experiences, and prototypes of major VR applications such as surgical simulation. His books Who Owns the Future? and You Are Not a Gadget were international bestsellers, and Dawn of the New Everything was named a 2017 best book of the year by The Wall Street Journal, The Economist, and Vox.

Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:

University of St. Joseph (CT)

Binti

Binti

Tor.com
Paperback
96 pages • $9.99
ISBN: 9780765385253
ebook icon
audiobook icon

Nnedi Okorafor

Winner of the Hugo Award
Winner of the Nebula Award

Binti is a compact gem of adventure, bravery and other worlds. Nnedi Okorafor efficiently and effectively uses the short format to create a visual, suspenseful ride. And the heroine, Binti, invites us along to participate in her secret mission. From the start she is special and destined for greater things, but without knowing the tests that will challenge her resilience. As a result, her heroism and vulnerabilities grab our attention, holding tight until the end.”

USA Today

Her name is Binti, and she is the first of the Himba people ever to be offered a place at Oomza University, the finest institution of higher learning in the galaxy. But to accept the offer will mean giving up her place in her family to travel between the stars among strangers who do not share her ways or respect her customs. Knowledge comes at a cost, one that Binti is willing to pay, but her journey will not be easy. The world she seeks to enter has long warred with the Meduse, an alien race that has become the stuff of nightmares. Oomza University has wronged the Meduse, and Binti’s stellar travel will bring her within their deadly reach. If Binti hopes to survive the legacy of a war not of her making, she will need both the gifts of her people and the wisdom enshrined within the University, itself—but first she has to make it there, alive.

Nnedi Okorafor

© Anyaugo Okorafor-Mbachu

Nnedi Okorafor born to Igbo Nigerian parents in Cincinnati, Ohio, won the Macmillan Writer’s Prize for Africa for her children’s book, Long Juju Man. Her adult novel, Who Fears Death, was a James Tiptree, Jr. Honor List book. She is an associate professor of creative writing and literature at the University at Buffalo.

 

 

 

 

Binti has been adopted for First-Year Experience programs at:

Owensboro Community and Technical College (KY); San Juan College (CA)

Continue reading

Riot Baby

Riot Baby

Tor.com
Hardcover
176 pages • $19.99
ISBN: 9781250214751
ebook icon

Tochi Onyebuchi

Riot Baby bursts at the seams of story with so much fire, passion and power that in the end it turns what we call a narrative into something different altogether.”

—Marlon James

Rooted in foundational loss and the hope that can live in anger, Riot Baby is both a global dystopian narrative and an intimate family story with quietly devastating things to say about love, fury, and the black American experience. Ella and Kev are brother and sister, both gifted with extraordinary power. Their childhoods are defined and destroyed by structural racism and brutality. Their futures might alter the world. When Kev is incarcerated for the crime of being a young black man in America, Ella—through visits both mundane and supernatural—tries to show him the way to a revolution that could burn it all down.

Tochi Onyebuchi

© Ben Arons

Tochi Onyebuchi holds a B.A. from Yale, an M.F.A. in screenwriting from Tisch, a master’s degree in global economic law from L’institut d’études politiques, and a J.D. from Columbia Law School. His writing has appeared in Asimov’s Science Fiction and Ideomancer, among other places, and he is the author of the novels Beasts Made of Night and Crown of Thunder. Tochi resides in Connecticut, where he works in the tech industry.

Annihilation

Annihilation

MCD x FSG Originals
Paperback
208 pages • $14.00
ISBN: 9780374537159
ebook icon

A Novel

Jeff VanderMeer

Now a Major Motion Picture
Winner of the Nebula Award

 

Annihilation is a book meant for gulping—for going in head-first and not coming up for air until you hit the back cover.”

—NPR

Area X has been cut off from the rest of the continent for decades. Nature has reclaimed the last vestiges of human civilization. The first expedition returned with reports of a pristine, Edenic landscape; all the members of the second expedition committed suicide; the third expedition died in a hail of gunfire as its members turned on one another; the members of the eleventh expedition returned as shadows of their former selves, and within months of their return, all had died of aggressive cancer. This is the twelfth expedition. Their group is made up of four women: an anthropologist; a surveyor; a psychologist, the de facto leader; and our narrator, a biologist. Their mission is to map the terrain and collect specimens; to record all their observations, scientific and otherwise, of their surroundings and of one another; and, above all, to avoid being contaminated by Area X itself. They arrive expecting the unexpected, and Area X delivers—they discover a massive topographic anomaly and life forms that surpass understanding—but it’s the surprises that came across the border with them, and the secrets the expedition members are keeping from one another, that change everything.

© Kyle Cassidy

Jeff VanderMeer is an award-winning novelist and editor, and the author most recently of the New York Times bestselling Southern Reach Trilogy. His fiction has been translated into twenty languages and has appeared in the Library of America’s American Fantastic Tales and multiple year’s-best anthologies. He grew up in the Fiji Islands and now lives in Tallahassee, Florida, with his wife