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54 Featured Titles

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Exam Copy
Speak Like Churchill, Stand Like Lincoln
21 Powerful Secrets of History's Greatest Speakers
Written by James C. Humes


Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
On Sale: April 23, 2002
Price: $14.95
ISBN: 978-0-7615-6351-8 (0-7615-6351-2)

Ever wish you could captivate your boardroom with the opening line of your presentation, like Winston Churchill in his most memorable speeches? Or want to command attention by looming larger than life before your audience, much like Abraham Lincoln when, standing erect and wearing a top hat, he towered over seven... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Modern Library Writer's Workshop
A Guide to the Craft of Fiction
Written by Stephen Koch


Format: Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publisher: Modern Library
On Sale: April 1, 2003
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-75558-3 (0-375-75558-6)

Compiling wisdom and advice from such masters of the craft as Henry James, E. M. Forster, Eudora Welty, and Toni Morrison, this guide to fiction writing provides helpful observations and techniques for would-be fiction writers, covering such topics as: Beginnings; The Writing Life; Shaping the Story; Making Characters Live; Inventing Your... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Bird by Bird
Some Instructions on Writing and Life
Written by Anne Lamott


Format: Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: September 1, 1995
Price: $15.95
ISBN: 978-0-385-48001-7 (0-385-48001-6)

An honest and humorous step-by-step guide on how to write and how to manage the writer's life. From "Getting Started," with "Short Assignments," through "Shitty First Drafts," "Character," "Plot," "Dialogue." All the way from "False Starts" to "How Do You Know When You're Done?" She discusses writer's Block, writing Groups, and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
When the Mind Hears
A History of the Deaf
Written by Harlan Lane


Format: Trade Paperback, 560 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: June 18, 1989
Price: $20.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-72023-2 (0-679-72023-5)

This first comprehensive history of the Deaf is also a powerful and compassionate study of the anatomy of prejudice and the motives and means of oppression.  It is a narrative, told largely from the vantage point of Laurent Clerc, the deaf Frenchman who was an intellectual leader of the Deaf community in... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Naked, Drunk, and Writing
Shed Your Inhibitions and Craft a Compelling Memoir or Personal Essay
Written by Adair Lara


Format: Trade Paperback, 258 pages
Publisher: Ten Speed Press
On Sale: August 31, 2010
Price: $15.99
ISBN: 978-1-58008-480-2 (1-58008-480-X)

An instructive, inspiring, and refreshingly irreverent guide that shows aspiring writers how to cast off self-doubt and concoct a stellar memoir.

The award-winning author of an autobiographical newspaper column, Adair Lara has written more than ten books, including the memoir Hold Me Close, Let Me Go. Packed with insight and humor, Naked... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Wave in the Mind
Talks and Essays on the Writer, the Reader, and the Imagination
Written by Ursula K. Le Guin


Format: Trade Paperback, 336 pages
Publisher: Shambhala
On Sale: February 17, 2004
Price: $22.95
ISBN: 978-1-59030-006-0 (1-59030-006-8)

Join Ursula K. Le Guin as she explores a broad array of subjects, ranging from Tolstoy, Twain, and Tolkien to women’s shoes, beauty, and family life. With her customary wit, intelligence, and literary craftsmanship, she offers a diverse and highly engaging set of readings. The Wave in the Mind includes some... Read more >

Exam Copy
A Is for American
Letters and Other Characters in the Newly United States
Written by Jill Lepore


Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: February 4, 2003
Price: $13.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-70408-6 (0-375-70408-6)

What ties Americans to one another? What unifies a nation of citizens with different racial, religious and ethnic backgrounds? These were the dilemmas faced by Americans in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries as they sought ways to bind the newly United States together.

In A is for American, award-winning historian Jill Lepore... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Genius of Language
Fifteen Writers Reflect on Their Mother Tongue
Written by Wendy Lesser


Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: July 12, 2005
Price: $13.95
ISBN: 978-1-4000-3323-2 (1-4000-3323-3)

Fifteen outstanding writers answered editor Wendy Lesser’s call for original essays on the subject of language—the one they grew up with, and the English in which they write.

Despite American assumptions about polite Chinese discourse, Amy Tan believes that there was nothing discreet about the Chinese language with which she grew up... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Art of the Personal Essay
An Anthology from the Classical Era to the Present
Written by Phillip Lopate


Format: Trade Paperback, 832 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: January 15, 1997
Price: $21.00
ISBN: 978-0-385-42339-7 (0-385-42339-X)

Distinguished from the formal essay by its friendly, conversational tone, its drive toward candor and confession, and its often quirky, first-person voice, the personal essay is perhaps the ideal literary form for beginning writers to explore their personal style and voice. The Art of the Personal Essay is the first anthology... Read more >

Exam Copy
Before We Get Started
A Practical Memoir of the Writer's Life
Written by Bret Lott


Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books
On Sale: January 25, 2005
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-345-47817-7 (0-345-47817-7)

This marvelous guide begins where other books on writing and the writing life leave off. Delving deep into the creative process, Bret Lott reveals truths we scarcely realized we needed to know but without which we as writers will soon lose our way. In ten intimate essays based on his own... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Spooky Art
Thoughts on Writing
Written by Norman Mailer


Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks
On Sale: February 10, 2004
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-8129-7128-6 (0-8129-7128-0)

“Writing is spooky. There is no routine of an office to keep you going, only the blank page each morning, and you never know where your words are coming from, those divine words.”

In The Spooky Art, Norman Mailer discusses with signature candor the rewards and trials of the writing life, and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Word Spy
The Word Lover's Guide to Modern Culture
Written by Paul McFedries


Format: Trade Paperback, 432 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: February 17, 2004
Price: $23.00
ISBN: 978-0-7679-1466-6 (0-7679-1466-X)

"...impressively wide-ranging, featuring neologisms drawn from English newspapers and magazines around the world as well as from fiction, nonfiction, and popular music." —Library Journal

Language wears many hats, but its most important job is to help us name or describe what's in the world. Words define us, our actions, even our existence.... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
In the Beginning
The Story of the King James Bible and How It Changed a Nation, a Language, and a Culture
Written by Alister McGrath


Format: Trade Paperback, 354 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: February 19, 2002
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-385-72216-2 (0-385-72216-8)

Renowned scholar Alister McGrath recounts the complicated history of the King James Bible and its impact with grace and simplicity.

The King James Bible has enriched the English language and Western culture more than any other single work. In the Beginning explores the forces–as political as they were theological–that led to... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Dancing Mind
Speech upon Acceptance of the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished C ontribution to American Letters
Written by Toni Morrison


Format: Hardcover, 24 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: December 24, 1996
Price: $18.95
ISBN: 978-0-375-40032-2 (0-375-40032-X)

On the occasion of her acceptance of the National Book Foundation Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters on the sixth of November, 1996, Nobel laureate Toni Morrison speaks with brevity and passion to the pleasures, the difficulties, the necessities, of the readingwriting life in our time. Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Lonely Voice
A Study of the Short Story
Written by Frank O'Connor


Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Publisher: Melville House
On Sale: June 7, 2011
Price: $17.95
ISBN: 978-1-935554-42-4 (1-935554-42-5)

The legendary book about writing by the legendary writer is back!
Frank O’Connor was one of the twentieth century’s greatest short story writers, and one of Ireland’s greatest authors ever. Now, O’Connor’s influential and sought-after book on the short story is back.
THE LONELY VOICE offers a master class with the master. With... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
In the Land of Invented Languages
Adventures in Linguistic Creativity, Madness, and Genius
Written by Arika Okrent


Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Spiegel & Grau
On Sale: May 11, 2010
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-8129-8089-9 (0-8129-8089-1)

Written by author Akira Okrent, who has a Ph.D. in linguistics, The Land of Invented Languages is an informative book about language, as seen through the escapades of those who have tried to invent ones that work better than those we are born speaking.

“Hats off to Okrent, who expertly exposes the... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Seven Steps on the Writer's Path
The Journey from Frustration to Fulfillment
Written by Nancy Pickard and Lynn Lott


Format: Trade Paperback, 258 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books
On Sale: June 1, 2004
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-345-45110-1 (0-345-45110-4)

The blank page, the impossible deadline, the rush of inspiration: There is no profession more maddening or more rewarding than being a writer. Yet surprisingly, all writers pass through the same sequence of stages in the course of their careers. It was this remarkable insight that inspired veteran authors Nancy Pickard... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Spunk & Bite
A Writer's Guide to Bold, Contemporary Style
Written by Arthur Plotnik


Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Random House Reference
On Sale: May 8, 2007
Price: $13.95
ISBN: 978-0-375-72227-1 (0-375-72227-0)

When too tightly leashed, writing chokes and loses its vitality. Although the rules of composition popularized in William Strunk Jr. and E. B. White’s Elements of Style have been de rigueur for decades, they won’t exactly set your writing free.

To the rescue comes Spunk & Bite, a guide to bold and... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Ballyhoo, Buckaroo, and Spuds
Ingenious Tales of Words and Their Origins
Written by Michael Quinion


Format: Hardcover, 224 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: October 17, 2004
Price: $19.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-219-5 (1-58834-219-0)

The real story of a word or phrase’s origin and evolution is often much stranger–and much more humorous–than the commonly accepted one; the many entries will certainly leave you “happy as a clam.” Happy as a clam? Really, what’s so happy about being a clam? The saying makes much more sense... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Weekend Novelist Rewrites the Novel
A Step-by-Step Guide to Perfecting Your Work
Written by Robert J. Ray


Format: Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publisher: Watson-Guptill
On Sale: February 16, 2010
Price: $18.99
ISBN: 978-0-8230-8443-2 (0-8230-8443-4)

This follow-up to the bestselling The Weekend Novelist will guide writers of all levels through the next phase in crafting their novel: the rewrite.
 
You’ve finished your first draft—congratulations! Think it’s ready for publication? Think again. The next stage is all about revising and reworking your manuscript—fine-tuning the plot, adding or... Read more >

Exam Copy
Letter Perfect
The Marvelous History of Our Alphabet From A to Z
Written by David Sacks


Format: Trade Paperback, 416 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: August 3, 2004
Price: $15.95
ISBN: 978-0-7679-1173-3 (0-7679-1173-3)

“[A] gem of popular linguistic history.”
Publishers Weekly

David Sacks has written a lively and learned account of the alphabet–and cultural history–in Letter Perfect.

Clearly explaining the letters as symbols of precise sounds of speech, the book begins with the earliest known alphabetic inscriptions (circa 1800 b.c.), recently discovered by archaeologists in Egypt... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Slam Dunks and No-Brainers
Pop Language in Your Life, the Media, and Like . . . Whatever
Written by Leslie Savan


Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: October 10, 2006
Price: $14.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-70242-6 (0-375-70242-3)

A marvelously original and informative book about the ever-changing American language that offers surprising insights into why we talk the way we talk.

With dazzling wit and acuity, three-time Pulitzer Prize finalist Leslie Savan dissects contemporary language to discover what our most popular idioms reveal about America today. She traces the... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Art of the Handwritten Note
A Guide to Reclaiming Civilized Communication
Written by Margaret Shepherd


Format: Hardcover, 176 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: January 22, 2002
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-7679-0745-3 (0-7679-0745-0)

The Art of the Handwritten Note gives thorough instruction to students who are adept at typing away at a forgiving computer, but who are daunted with the prospect of hand-writting notes. From overcoming illegible penmanship to mastering the challenge of keeping straight margins, avoiding smeared ink, and choosing stationery that is... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The New York Times Manual of Style and Usage, Revised and Expanded Edition
The Official Style Guide Used by the Writers and Editors of the World's Most Authoritative Newspaper
Written by Allan M. Siegal and William Connolly


Format: Trade Paperback, 384 pages
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
On Sale: January 2, 2002
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-8129-6389-2 (0-8129-6389-X)

Is the deejay a wannabe?
Or does the D.J. just want to be?
When is heaven capitalized?
Do you stand in line or on line?

For anyone who writes—short stories or business plans, book reports or news articles—knotty choices of spelling, grammar, punctuation, and meaning lurk in every line: Lay or lie? Who or... Read more >

Exam Copy
Resurrecting Hebrew

Written by Ilan Stavans


Format: Hardcover, 240 pages
Publisher: Schocken
On Sale: September 16, 2008
Price: $21.00
ISBN: 978-0-8052-4231-7 (0-8052-4231-7)

Here is the stirring story of how Hebrew was rescued from the fate of a dead language to become the living tongue of a modern nation. Ilan Stavans’s quest begins with a dream featuring a beautiful woman speaking an unknown language. When the language turns out to be Hebrew, a friend... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.
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