North America: A World in One Continent by Huw Cordey (Running Press, $30)
On Sunday, May 19th, a seven-part series will premiere on the Discovery Channel which will present the North American continent as never seen before. This magnificent book is the companion volume to that groundbreaking series.
Huw Cordey, who has been making wildlife documentaries for more than two decades, was a contributing author to the best-selling book “Planet Earth.” He builds a convincing case that North America is, indeed, the most dynamic continent on Earth. With more than 150,000 miles of coastline, the continent is home to twenty-four countries and more than half a billion people who share the space with hundreds of thousands of species of mammals, birds, insects and plants.
Through words and photographs, this book tells of the continent’s birth millions of years ago, as well as highlighting the very heart of North America. It is an absolute treasure.
Everything is Perfect When You’re a Liar by Kelly Oxford (It Books, $25.99)
Kelly Oxford, the Los Angeles-based online superstar, started fudging the facts at an early age. When she was five, she scrawled “I had a baby” in her Hello Kitty diary and was out of the starting gate. By repackaging the facts of her life as a wife and mother in her blog posts and tweets, she has attracted a large following online due in no small part to her frankness and irresistible quips.
She has advised readers, for example, that if they can name 5 Kardashians but not five countries in Asia, they should stick a knife in an electrical socket. She also has observed that adulthood is probably when you stop taking drugs to trip out, and start medicating to feel normal. A self-professed “born salesman” but “terrible liar,” Oxford has written this laugh-out-loud book that traces her life story from a six-year-old school play auteur to straight talking mother of three with a screenwriting deal.
As the author explains, “A lot of my life sounds like a lie because I’m not perfect and I do a lot of weird and stupid things.” Indeed.
Tipping Sacred Cows: Kick the Bad Work Habits that Masquerade as Virtues by Jake Breeden (Jossey-Bass, $25.95)
Most of us learned at an early age that in order to make it in the business world we should try our best, work well with others, and produce excellent work. According to Jake Breeden, a faculty member at Duke Corporate Education and a top-rated provider of custom executive education, these three chosen nuggets of advice, in practice, have a dark side that can actually hinder success.
His new book, which is based on his experience coaching thousands of leaders in 27 countries, reveals what it takes to overcome the dangerous behaviors that masquerade as virtues at work and how you can lead with fewer self-imposed limitations and greater results. He presents the negativity of seven of the most sacred cows, namely Balance, Collaboration, Creativity, Excellence, Fairness, Passion and Preparation, and offers proven strategies of how to overcome their allure and achieve real results.
Let the cow tippings begin!
Young Titan: The Making of Winston Churchill by Michael Shelden (Simon & Schuster, $30)
Much has been written about Winston Churchill the man but little attention has been paid to his remarkable early political career before a fall from grace precipitated his “wilderness years” during the years between the two World Wars. Michael Shelden offers the first in-depth exploration of this period in a book that is highly readable, meticulously researched, and rich in detail.
As Shelden explains, “History likes winners, and the image of the older, victorious Churchill has long overshadowed the story of the eager younger man who soared to prominence only to find that he had overreached, and who left office with his reputation in tatters.”
He adds that in many ways this early period is the most colorful of his career and the key to his character. Shelden points out that it was an exhilarating time full of drama, political intrigue, personal courage, and, yes, grave miscalculations.
This is an original, indelible portrait of one of history’s greatest leaders as a young man. “Young Titan” fills in many of the missing pieces and provides readers with a better understanding of this extraordinary man.
Perilous Moon: Occupied France, 1944 – The End Game by Stuart Nimmo (Casemate, $34.95)
This is the final days of Occupied France during World War II as seen through the eyes of British bomber pilot Neil Nimmo and supplemented with newly discovered period photographs.
Shot down by Luftwaffe nightfighter pilot Helmut Bergmann, Nimmo parachutes into a field between Amiens and Abbeville, just as the Occupation comes to a bloody end. This book follows both Bergmann and Nimmo and is must reading for anyone even remotely interested in this period of history.
Voices of the Pacific: Untold Stories from the Marine Heroes of World War II by Adam Makos with Marcus Brotherton (Berkley Caliber, $27.95)
This graphic account follows fifteen Marines from the Pearl Harbor attack and their intense boot camp training, through battles with the Japanese on Guadalcanal, Cape Gloucester, Peleliu, and Okinawa, and eventually their return home after V-J Day. This is an oral history of the Pacific War through the words of the men who fought on the front lines.
With unprecedented access to the veterans, rare photographs, and unpublished memoirs, Makos and Brotherton have produced an incredible historic record of American bravery and sacrifice.
Makos is co-author of “A Higher Call” and Brotherton best known for his literary collaborations and his contributions to more than twenty-five books including “Call of Duty” and “A Company of Heroes.”