Friday, October 28, 2011

Afghanistan: The Past, the Present, and the Future

THE DRESSMAKER OF KHAIR KHANA by Gayle Tzemach LemmonGayle Tzemach Lemmon, author of The Dressmaker of Khair Khana, will speak this weekend at our luncheon at the National Orientation Director's annual conference in New Orleans—and this reminded me of the books we publish about Afghanistan.

In The Dressmaker of Khair Khana, Gayle Tzemach Lemmon tells the story of Kamila Sidiqi, the most unlikely of entrepreneurs under the Taliban. Desperate to support her six brothers and sisters at home and banished from Kabul’s streets by the Taliban, she started a dressmaking business in her living room which offered work to 100 women in her community. Gayle’s book has already been adopted by the University of Florida as its freshman classes’ common book—and it will be available in paperback in March 2012.

Martin Ewans’s Afghanistan: A Short History of Its People and Politics is "an intelligent and useful book . . . Ewans surveys the major episodes and controversies of Afghan history fairly and completely. . . . [A] concise, overarching narrative [that] fills a void.” (Washington Post)

In Opium Nation, Afghan-American journalist Fariba Nawa delivers a revealing exploration of Afghanistan and the drug trade which rules the country, from corrupt officials to warlord, child brides, and beyond.

In The Long Way Back: Afghanistan’s Quest for Peace, Chris Alexander—the former UN Deputy Special Representative in Afghanistan—gives readers a close look at Afghanistan’s recent history, he delivers a blueprint for how to make the country viable in the future.

The Story of Science, Discovery, and the Genius of the Royal Society

SEEING FURTHER edited by Bill BrysonEdited and introduced by Bill Bryson, with original contributions from “a glittering array of scientific writing talent” (Sunday Observer), Seeing Further tells the story of modern science through the lens of the international Royal Society and its fellows—including Isaac Newton, John Locke, Charles Darwin, Albert Einstein, and Stephen Hawking—who have split the atom, discovered the double helix and the electron, and given us the computer and the World Wide Web.

Here are contributions by more than twenty of the world’s greatest scientific—and science-fiction—thinkers, including:

Richard Dawkins - James Gleick - Neal Stephenson
Richard Holmes - Margaret Atwood - Martin Rees

“Traces the Royal Society’s unparalleled contributions to science.”—Discover magazine

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Galley Giveaway: Religion Expert Diana Butler Bass' CHRISTIANITY AFTER RELIGION

ALL OF OUR GALLEYS HAVE BEEN GIVEN AWAY! Please visit us again for new giveaways.
With her forthcoming title, Christianity After Religion: The End of Church and the Birth of a New Spiritual Awakening, Diana Butler Bass Diana Butler Bass—author of Christianity for the Rest of Us and A People's History of Christianity—exposes the current failings of the church and how it is giving rise to a new “spiritual but not religious” vitality evidenced in the latest national polls and her own fresh research.

Offering a fresh interpretation of this transformation—while identifying a new spiritual awakening taking place inside and outside the church—Christianity After Religion will show students how to approach their own faith with a newfound freedom that is both life-giving and service driven.

Christianity After Religion goes on sale in February, 2012, but we have 2 advanced reading copies to give away now!

A Special Offer from HarperOne

To celebrate the American Academy of Religion and the Society of Biblical Literature's annual conference in HarperOne's hometown of San Francisco—we've put together a special eBook promotion! So, load up on your reading for the plane! Or, if you won't be able to get to the conference, you won't feel so left out with an electronic stack of great books at a great price! Hurry! This offer expires on November 13, 2011.

10 great books! $3.99 each!

From November 4-13, 2011—HarperOne is offering 10 eBooks for just $1.99 each! Click on your favorite e-tailer below or head over to Indie Bound to purchase from a local bookseller! Offer valid in US only.

God's Problem by Bart Ehrman
iBookstore Amazon Kindle Google ebookstore nook kobo

The Birth of Christianity by John Dominic Crossan
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The Meaning of Jesus by Marcus Borg and N.T. Wright
iBookstore Amazon Kindle Google ebookstore nook kobo

The Historical Jesus by John Dominic Crossan
iBookstore Amazon Kindle Google ebookstore nook kobo

Discovering God by Rodney Stark
iBookstore Amazon Kindle Google ebookstore nook kobo

The Misunderstood Jew by Amy-Jill Levine
Amazon Kindle Google ebookstore nook kobo

The Lost History of Christianity by Philip Jenkins
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Why Religion Matters by Huston Smith
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Mormon America by Richard Ostling
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The Gnostic Gospels of Jesus by Marv Meyer
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If you do make the trip to San Francisco, please make sure to visit HarperOne at booths 536 & 537.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Psychology Professors Excited About Gretchen Rubin's THE HAPPINESS PROJECT

We love hearing feedback about our books from professors and educators—after all, they’re the experts, as we see it. Recently we mailed copies of Gretchen Rubin's The Happiness Project to professors of psychology. The feedback was largely positive, including a note Ms. Rubin personally received from Dr. Brian Higley from the Department of Psychology at University of North Florida. Dr. Higley was initially quite skeptical about The Happiness Project and its usefulness in psychology coursework; he noted that "as a scientist with an interest in meaningful change, I have learned that most popular books in this arena are often based on flimsy evidence at best." However, he quickly realized that Ms. Rubin's book was not like other comparable titles.

The Happiness Project is a call to action; a call that is grounded in some of the best science, philosophy and literature across the ages. Although Ms. Rubin fills The Happiness Project with specific advice and lessons from her own journey, her book encourages students to use their own critical thinking skills to discover their own path to happiness. Rather than positioning her process as a “cure all,”  Rubin merely asks students to walk their own path to happiness—try different things, stretch themselves beyond their comfort zones, and experiment with the concepts.

Dr. Higley agreed, telling Ms. Rubin that he "will be recommending your book in many of my courses and for many of my clients.  I think the content is rock solid and the process you recommend is grounded in much of the change literature.  I thank you for your fantastic example of how various branches of epistemology can come together to create useful changes in life—bravo!”

If you haven’t had a chance to consider The Happiness Project for class reading—it’s never too late to change!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Galley Giveaway: THE MOMENT, Edited by Larry Smith, Shows The Profound Impact of a Single Moment

THE MOMENT edited by Larry Smith
ALL OF OUR GALLEYS HAVE BEEN GIVEN AWAY! Please visit us again for new giveaways.
The creators of  the New York Times bestselling Six-Word Memoirs are back with The Moment—stories of how a single moment dramatically changed the contributors’ lives. This collection of 125 personal stories from 125 writers and artists is powerfully moving, offering unexpected insight into how our lives hinge upon a single, defining moment.
The contributors, ranging from the famous to the obscure, include Dave Eggers, Melissa Etheridge, Jennifer Egan, Elizabeth Gilbert, And many more!

Many of us think our lives follow a path, either fated, or one that comes from a route we engaged on and then strive to follow. But in fact so much of our existence results from a single moment or decision that was made on a whim, even randomly. The Moment is a collection of stories about how a single instant—a single decision, happenstance, accident, call, conversation, letter, or tweet—changed everything, for better or worse.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Miscommunication=Missed Opportunities

THAT'S NOT WHAT I MEANT! by Deborah TannenDeborah Tannen, Ph.D., professor of linguistics at Georgetown University and author of the classic You Just Don't Understand: Women and Men in Conversation, is—thankfully—a great communicator—translating complex research findings into readable and helpful books for students and those of us without advanced degrees.

In That’s Not What I Meant!, Professor Tannen reminds us that it’s often not what you say but how you say it. The part of the country you come from, your ethnic background, age, class, gender, and individual personality—these and many other influences result in different habits and assumptions about how to say what you mean. When conversational styles differ, you may draw erroneous conclusions about another person’s intentions and abilities—and they may walk away with similarly erroneous impressions of you.

For example, when two people have different ideas about how long a pause to leave between turns, each is likely to blame the other: “You don’t give me a chance to talk! You’re not doing your part in this conversation!” A person who prefers indirectness feels ignored by someone who expects ideas to be stated outright. One person thinks asking personal questions shows interest while another finds such questions intrusive.

Professor Tannen gives your students a revolutionary new way of understanding what goes on when they talk to others—and a set of tools they can use when they are not happy with the way a conversation, or a relationship, is going.

“Tannen combines a novelist’s ear for the way people speak with a rare power of original analysis. . . . Fascinating.”—Oliver Sacks, author of The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and The Mind’s Eye

Are you interested in considering That’s Not What I Meant! (Harper Paperbacks: 9780062062994, $14.99) for one of your courses? Let us know by filling out our desk copy form.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Nobel Peace Prize 2011

THIS CHILD WILL BE GREAT by Ellen Johnson SirleafThe Nobel Peace Prize 2011 was awarded jointly to Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Leymah Gbowee and Tawakkul Karman “for their non-violent struggle for the safety of women and for women’s rights to full participation in peace-building work.”

HarperCollins is proud to be the publisher of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s This Child Will Be Great: Memoir of a Remarkable Life by Africa's First Woman President.

“The first thing to be said about Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s This Child Will Be Great is that it is exceptionally well written, a true story that seems as much a thriller as the remembrances of an ambitious and brave woman. . . . This timely book, essential for anyone who hopes to understand West Africa in general and Liberia in particular, is a lesson in courage and perseverance.”—Washington Post

Thursday, October 6, 2011

2011 Nobel Prize in Literature: Tomas Tranströmer

According to a Nobel Prize survey, Swedish poet Tomas Tranströmer is not a household name:

However, that's about to change: Tomas Tranströmer has been awarded the 2011 Nobel Prize in Literature.

So, here's what you need to do to help move things in the right direction:

1. Read Prelude—a poem from Tomas Tranströmer's Selected Poems.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Galley Giveaway: CLAIR DE LUNE from THE MOONFLOWER VINE author Jetta Carleton

CLAIR DE LUNE by Jetta Carleton
ALL OF OUR GALLEYS HAVE BEEN GIVEN AWAY! Please visit us again for new giveaways.
In 2009 Harper Perennial republished Jetta Carleton’s The Moonflower Vine—then considered to be her first and only novel. This beloved family saga of the American heartland was called “
deeply felt . . . dramatic . . . constantly alive” (Harper’s Magazine), was described by Jane Smiley as an American classic, and became a runaway New York Times bestseller.

Not long ago, Carleton’s estate brought to Harper Perennial’s attention the manuscript of an unpublished novel that Carleton completed in the years before she died. This newly discovered novel of small-town love contains the same frankness and emotional acuity that made her first novel so beloved.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Students Empowered by Conor Grennan's LITTLE PRINCES

LITTLE PRINCES by Conor Grennan

I was so pleased recently to hear from Nancy at St. Bonaventure University. She and I have been in touch several times over the last few months after her school chose Conor Grennan’s Little Princes for their "All Bonaventure Reads" program. She kindly wrote to me and shared some feedback on how well the book worked and how wonderful Conor was when he came to campus last week.

All of the first-year students were asked to read the book and, as their first college assignment, write a reflection. The institution selected the top 13 essays, and published them in a hardcover keepsake book—with copies given to each of the students as well as Conor. Reading through the essays, I was very impressed by how succinctly the students captured exactly what Little Princes hopes to impress upon its readers. Some of the excerpts I found most powerful include:
-          "I want to be there for others, I want to make a difference. I noticed myself going the extra mile for others more after reading this book. What more of a connection can you develop from a book than producing real-life results?"

-          "This book is about discovering where your home and heart lie. For Conor, Nepal became his home and the hundreds of lost Nepalese children hold a special place in his heart. This only reinforces my belief that through service we can better understand not only the world, but ourselves as well. Anything you do will help you in some way and you will only learn from the experience. I am glad I have been able to hear about this wonderful journey."

-          "It is the work of Conor Grennan and his colleagues that give hope to everyone. Little Princes is one of the most inspirational stories I have ever read, and I am grateful for the experience."

-         "The overall focus of the book gives way to individual lessons that can be applied to anyone’s life and stories. For example, Conor may not be able to help the entire country of Nepal, but he proved that one person can truly make a difference—little by little."

-          "The next four years of my life are going to be the beginning of my ‘good journey.’ I can’t wait to learn about myself and realize what I want out of life. Reading about Conor’s passion makes me want to do good things in the world and I hope that I will get some sort of opportunity to travel to somewhere like Nepal. I don’t know where my life will take me but I’m ready to start my journey, just like Conor did."

For more information on Little Princes’ success at St. Bonaventure University—as well as details on his visit—you can visit the following page.

Have a similar story about using HarperCollins titles for common reading programs? Let us know, we love hearing feedback!