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Japan’s Tipping Point
Japan’s Tipping Point is a small book on a huge topic. In the post-Fukushima era, Japan is the “canary in the coal mine” for the rest of the world. Can Japan radically shift its energy policy, become greener, more self-sufficient, and avoid catastrophic impacts on the climate? Mark Pendergrast arrived in Japan exactly two months after the Fukushima meltdown. This book is his eye-opening account of his trip and his alarming conclusions
Inside the Outbreaks: The Elite Medical Detectives of the Epidemic Intelligence Service
Mark Pendergrast takes readers on a riveting journey through the history of this remarkable organization, following EIS officers on their globetrotting quest to eliminate the most lethal and widespread threats to the world’s health. Over the years they have successfully battled polio, cholera, and smallpox, and in recent years have turned to the epidemics killing us now — smoking, obesity, and violence among them.
Mirror Mirror: A History of the Human Love Affair With Reflection
Of all human inventions, the mirror is perhaps the most intriguing, since it is so closely connected to our own consciousness, reflecting both reality and illusion. As our first technology for self-contemplation, the mirror is arguably as important an invention as the wheel and perhaps even more universal (the Incas, who had mirrors, did not invent wheels). Mirror Mirror is the fascinating story of the mirror’s invention, refinement, and use in an astonishing range of human activities — from the bloodthirsty smoking gods of the Aztecs to the fantastic mirrored rooms wealthy Romans created for their orgies, to the mirror’s key role in gathering light from the far reaches of the universe.
The History of Coffee and How it Transformed Our World
Uncommon Grounds tells the epic story of coffee. From its discovery on an ancient Ethiopian hillside to its role as communal elixir in the Age of Starbucks, coffee has dominated and molded the economies, politics, and social structures of entire countries. One of the world’s most valuable agricultural commodities, coffee delivers the largest jolt of the world’s most widely taken psychoactive drug. Revolutions have been planned, romances sparked, business deals sealed, novels written, and friendships cemented over this potent brew.
Victims of Memory: Sex Abuse Accusations and Shattered Lives
“An impressive display of scholarship…a comprehensive treatment of the recovered-memories controversy…. Pendergrast offers a broader portrayal of the social and cultural contexts of the recovered-memories phenomenon [than other books on the subject]. His treatment is also distinguished by some welcome historical perspective…. Pendergrast demonstrates a laudable ability to lay out all sides of the argument…. [He] renders a sympathetic portrayal of recovery therapists as well-intentioned but misinformed players in a drama that has veered out of control.” — Daniel L. Schacter, Scientific American
For God, Country & Coca-Cola: The Definitive History of the Great American Soft Drink and the Company that Makes It
For God, Country & Coca-Cola is a cultural, social, and economic history of America as seen through the green glass of a Coke bottle. And what a quintessentially American tale it is. Coca-Cola began humbly as a patent medicine amid the fervor and chaos of Reconstruction Atlanta. A shrewd marketeer saw its value as a beverage, and it rapidly grew through the Gilded Age to become the dominant consumer product of the American Century.
And now for something completely different: Jack and the Bean Soup is an irreverent, funny take on the classic fairy tale, only in this case Jack is propelled heavenward by powerful flatulence. A children’s book that will appeal to adults as well — and it explains the presence of evil on earth and the origin of thunder!