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For an accident-prone "normal girl from Norfolk" who didn't run a serious race until she was 25, Chrissie Wellington has done pretty well for herself. A multiple world champion and record-holder, she remained unbeaten in 13 straight races at her chosen event, the Ironman triathlon, before her retirement in December. And what a fiendish event it is – a 2.4-mile swim followed by a 112-mile bike ride, topped off with a marathon. Wellington's account of how she graduated from entering her first marathon on a whim in 2002 to the Ironman – surely Ironwoman would be more apt – title five years later is inspirational in the truest sense, because she feels strongly that sport can make ordinary people do extraordinary things. She was helped/bullied on her way by a tyrannical coach with a chequered past but was obviously deeply competitive by nature, and her accounts of the more brutal aspects of Ironman are not for the squeamish; if a competitor was illegally slipstreaming her in the cycling phase, for instance, she would let fly an airborne stream of pee to make them back off.Add to cart
From early childhood, Renee had access to a realm she called “unreality.” Like Antoine Roquentin in Sartre’s Nausea, she sees ordinary objects as purposeless yet threatening: They take on a life of their own. When she tries to calm herself by repeating the names of everything she encounters—“chair, jug, table, it is a chair”—she hears only hollow, meaningless sounds. This slim volume, compiled in 1951 by Renee’s psychologist, Marguerite Sechehaye, offers a fascinating account of the young girl’s emotional and linguistic collapse, but the story of her recovery reads like an advertisement for the miracles of Freudian theory. In the second half of the narrative, Renee works through her problems by calling her therapist “Mama” and pretending to drink milk from her breasts.Add to cart
Peter Ames Carlin’s New York Times bestselling biography of one America’s greatest musicians is the first in twenty-five years to be written with the cooperation of Bruce Springsteen himself; “Carlin gets across why Mr. Springsteen has meant so much, for so long, to so many people” (The New York Times). In Bruce, acclaimed music writer Peter Ames Carlin presents a startlingly intimate and vivid portrait of a rock icon. For more than four decades, Bruce Springsteen has reflected the heart and soul of America with a career that includes twenty Grammy Awards, more than 120 million albums sold, two Golden Globes, and an Academy Award. Peter Ames Carlin masterfully encompasses the breadth of Springsteen’s astonishing career and explores the inner workings of a man who managed to redefine generations of music. A must read for fans, Bruce is a meticulously researched, compulsively readable biography of a man laden with family tragedy, a tremendous dedication to his artistry, and an all-consuming passion for fame and influence.Add to cart
At the age of sixteen, Monica Seles crashed on to the world tennis scene by becoming the youngest winner in French Open History. For three years, she dominated the tennis circuit, racking up eight Grand Slam titles, winning three back-to-back French Open titles. At post-match conferences she charmed the media with her trademark giggle. In January 1993, Seles defeated Steffi Graf in the Australian Women's Open and in April of that year, while playing a quarter-final in Hamburg, a boning knife was plunged between her shoulder blades by a Graff fan. Everything changed. The incident shocked the tennis world. Seles' injuries healed, but Seles did not. Now, in this compelling book she tells us in her own words what followed - years of seclusion, the fog of despair, binge eating, dealing with criticism about her weight from a brutal press, losing her father-coach to cancer and never regaining her dominance on court despite getting in to the top 10. After years battling to regain fitness and tennis glory, an excruciating injury forced Monica to take time off from tennis in 2003 and she embarked on her own journey. She abandoned the arduous workouts and punitive diets, and slowly uncovered the painful emotions behind years of tumultuous feelings. This is a human and inspiring story of determination, amazing talent and touching vulnerability, that Seles hopes will motivate and inspire others to find happiness in their own lives. Monica Seles is a former No 1 professional tennis player who became the youngest-ever champion at the French Open in 1990 and went on to win nine Grand Slam singles titles. In 2007, she was appointed goodwill ambassador for the UN's Global Sports for Peace and Development Initiative.Add to cart
Hello, Gorgeous explores how the poor but resourceful girl from Brooklyn made the quantum leap from playing a moth in an Off Broadway playlet to headlining her own Broadway musical, Funny Girl, which often seemed to deliberately mirror Streisand's own Cinderella story. On the way up, she was advised to change her look, drop her “cockamamie songs,” and shed her “angry woman attitude,” but her success was as much a testament to her talent as it was to remaining true to herself.Add to cart
A “candid, courageous, and unsparing memoir” (The New York Review of Books) of post–Cold War politics and global statecraft Written with eloquence and unprecedented candor, Interventions is the story of Kofi Annan’s remarkable time at the center of the world stage. After forty years of service at the United Nations, Annan—who received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2001—shares his unique experiences during the terrorist attacks of September 11; the American invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan; the war between Israel, Hizbollah, and Lebanon; the brutal conflicts of Somalia, Rwanda, and Bosnia; and the geopolitical transformations following the end of the Cold War. A personal biography of global statecraft, Interventions is as much a memoir as a guide to world order—past, present, and future.Add to cart
This fascinating biography provides a detailed portrait of the high-energy, charismatic international superstar and frontman of the ever-popular band, Bon Jovi. The book charts Jon's relationship with the other band members who have their fair share of rock and roll stories - sex, booze, burnouts, health and women problems. Although rock music is Jon Bon Jovi's first love, he has more recently developed an interest in acting - starring in various hit TV shows such as Ally McBeal and Sex and the City and attracting critical acclaim for his role in World War II hit film, U-571. He has also scored film music, with his score for Young Guns earning him an Oscar nomination. Bestselling writer Laura Jackson explores the personality, character, drive and the determination that have taken him from playing New Jersey clubs through all the groupie excess and glamorous indulgence to where the band is today. Two new chapters in this updated edition detail his recent work for charity, his involvement in politics and football and also give an update on the band's new albums and tours.Add to cart
As the South African correspondent for the London Independent during the key years between the release of Nelson Mandela from prison in 1990 and his election as president of South Africa in 1994, Carlin (Playing the Enemy: Nelson Mandela and the Game that Made a Nation, 2008) offers a thoughtful tribute to this unparalleled leader within the frame of his leadership legacy. The author looks at the various tactics Mandela used to bring about a nearly miraculous transition from apartheid to all-inclusive democracy in South Africa. His 27-year imprisonment had softened the edges of the African National Congress leader, who had served as head of the group’s armed wing. He was condemned in his 1964 trial for taking up arms against the state; in prison at Robben Island and elsewhere, Mandela had turned his unimaginable suffering into a sense of duty, gravitas and forgiveness, even of his enemies. In prison, his natural graciousness won over even his white guards, and he began to study Afrikaans in an attempt to understand the Afrikaner and his history. Mandela’s ability to take the long view, as Carlin delineates, allowed him to see beyond calls for vengeance after violence broke out within black townships, instigated by the rival Inkatha group or after the assassination of ANC leader Chris Hani by a white man in 1993. Mandela’s magnanimity disarmed both blacks and whites, and his incredible stature as a much-needed peacemaker largely kept his estranged wife from being prosecuted for the violence and murderous actions she had encouraged in her bodyguards. Carlin zeroes in on Mandela’s dignified capacity to allow all people, despite their backgrounds, to change and evolve for the good.Add to cart
As author Mitch Albom puts it in his introduction by way of explaining the book’s subtitle: “If there is, as the subtitle of this books suggests, a Zen of Tony Bennett, it is surely that: a philosophy of life so pure and honest that it can smile when it hears itself sung back. How many of us can say that? How many of us cringe at a recording of our own voices, or when we see ourselves on video, or when we think about how we acted yesterday or last year? “Tony Bennett, at eighty-six, can smile when his world is reflected—and with good reason. You are tempted to say talent, but many a talented artist has despised his own gifts. You are tempted to say success, but how many successful people are privately miserable?
Material Girl . . . Immaculate sexpot . . . Superstar . . . Mother . . . Kabbalah enthusiast . . . For three decades she has defied categorization. . . . She remains one of our greatest living pop icons.Here is the groundbreaking biography that finally solves the mystery at the heart of Madonna's chameleonlike existence. Drawing upon scores of candid interviews with producers, musicians, collaborators, lovers, and friends, Lucy O'Brien's Madonna: Like an Icon explores the complex personality and legendary drive that have made Madonna the most famous female pop artist of our time. From her mother's premature death to Madonna's dynamic arrival on the New York club scene, from "Like a Virgin" to Evita and beyond, every stage of this dazzling star's life and career is brilliantly illuminated—the stereotypes deconstructed, the lies exposed, the artist examined, the legend celebrated.
In the first part of the autobiography, Mandela describes his upbringing as a child and adolescent in South Africa, and being connected to the royal Thembu dynasty. His childhood name was Rolihlahla, which is loosely translated as "pulling the branch of a tree", or a euphemism for "troublemaker". Mandela describes his education at a Thembu college called Clarkebury, and later at the strict Healdtown school, where students were rigorously put in routines. He mentions his education at the University of Fort Hare, and his practice of law later on. He also then writes; "Democracy meant all men to be heard, and decision was taken together as a people. Majority rule was a foreign notion. A minority was not to be clashed by a majority."Add to cart
Marilyn & Me, a memoir in words and photographs, is an intimate story of Monroe before her fall and a young photographer on his way to the top. Schiller’s original text and extraordinary photography is a story that has never been told before, and he tells it with tact, humor and compassion. What emerges during the final months of her life is a portrait of an artist self-aware, in control of her image, yet fragile and vulnerable, and uniquely touching.Add to cart
Author Phillip Norman, whose previous bestseller, John Lennon: The Life, was praised as a “haunting, mammoth, terrific piece of work” (New York Times Book Review) and whose classic Shout! is widely considered to be the definitive biography of the Beatles, now turns his attention to the iconic front man of the Rolling Stones, “the greatest rock ’n’ roll band in the world.” Norman’s Mick Jagger is an extraordinarily detailed and vibrantly written in-depth account of the life and half-century-long career of one of the most fascinating and complex superstars of rock music—the most comprehensive biography to date of the famously enigmatic musician. Keith Richards had his say in Life. Now it’s time to get to know intimately the other half of the duo responsible for such enduring hits as “Paint It Black,” “Sympathy for the Devil,” “Gimme Shelter,” and “(I Can’t Get No) Satisfaction.” Mick Jagger is a must read for Stones fans, and everyone who can’t get enough of the serious memoirs and biographies of popular musicians, like Patti Smith’s Just Kids, Does the Noise in My Head Bother You? by Steven Tyler, and the Warren Zevon story, I’ll Sleep When I’m Dead.Add to cart
She’s a six-time Oscar nominee with forty years of films to her credit, but Sissy Spacek has always made it clear she’s never wanted to be queen of the Hollywood prom.
From her terrifying turn as Stephen King’s anti-heroine in 1976’s “Carrie“ to her down-to-the-mannerisms take on Loretta Lynn in 1980’s “Coal Miner’s Daughter,” Spacek’s quest for unconventionality has made her one of the most formidable actresses of a generation. As it turns out, that non-conformity extends to her personal life as well: at the height of her career, she and husband Jack Fisk fled Hollywood for a farmhouse in rural Virginia, where they raised daughters Schuyler Fisk, now 29, and Madison Fisk, 23.
The first narrative biography of the Bee Gees, the phenomenally popular vocal group that has sold more than 200 million records worldwide—sales in the company of the Beatles and Michael Jackson. The Bee Gees is the epic family saga of brothers Barry, Robin, and Maurice Gibb, and it's riddled with astonishing highs—especially as they became the definitive band of the disco era, fueled by Saturday Night Feverand crashing lows, including the tragic drug-fueled downfall of youngest brother, Andy. In recent years, a whole new generation of fans has rediscovered the undeniable grooves and harmonies that made the Bee Gees and songs like Stayin' Alive, How Deep is Your Love, To Love Somebody, and I Started a Joke timeless.Add to cart
For beloved superstar Marie Osmond, one gift that her mother gave her stands above the rest: the gift to trust and follow her heart. Even when her path seemed bleak, it was this unwavering faith that allowed her to follow her dreams, both professional and personal, and survive the hardest times in her life. Like so many women out there, Marie has struggled through years of being a single parent and a working parent, while juggling the need to be there for her children and still be there for her other “family,” the multitude of fans and followers who look up to her. Through it all, Marie has turned to the person who helped her through every stage of her life and her career: her mother. Drawing on the wisdom that Olive Osmond imparted over the years, Marie weaves a rich, touching, and honest memoir about her life offstage and off-camera, where she took on her most important role: motherhood. Through her personal delights, dreams, downturns, and devastating tragedy, Marie offers insights on creating a strong family, raising happy and independent children and, especially, moving forward when it seems impossible to do so.Add to cart
From his gold medal at the 1960 Olympic Games to his defeat of Sonny Liston to claim the world heavyweight championship in 1964—and for decades since—the unforgettable Muhammad Ali has captured the attention of the world. Here, drawn from books, specialty periodicals, newspapers, college magazines (covering his speaking tours), and the work of major literary figures such as Norman Mailer and Thomas Hauser is the best collection ever of writing on “The Greatest.”Add to cart
“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee; the hand can’t hit what the eye can’t see.” —Muhammad Ali The Official Portrait of the Greatest of All Time: Ali is a magical, larger than life depiction of Muhammad Ali’s illustrious life and career that is sure to become a collector’s item. This coffee table hardcover book takes the reader on a chronological journey spanning Ali’s life and times, featuring some of the most captivating and poignant photos ever taken of the self proclaimed “Greatest of All Time.” It covers every major highlight of Muhammad’s life from his teenage years to his conversion to Islam and his refusal to be drafted into the Army, to his diagnosis of Parkinson’s Disease and his current vocation as an ambassador of peace. All of these events are wrapped around detailed highlights of every one of Muhammad’s fights.
After four decades in the music industry, Michael Bolton has become one the most successful musicians of our time. THE SOUL OF IT ALL is his backstage pass into his life lived thus far-into the venues, busses, limos, and hotel rooms of stardom, and finally into his home and heart. His story will go long and dive deep, not only into his self-proclaimed "vagabond vampire" life, but also into the belly of the beast that is the music industry, with its joys, follies, and torments. From a 14 year old kid performing in dive bars in his hometown of New Haven, CT, to struggling to provide for his wife and kids, to finally breaking through with the Soul Provider album, and going on to sell more than 53 million albums and singles worldwide, Bolton has fought for and earned a life most just dream of. THE SOUL OF IT ALL is his life, chock-full of all the incredible stories, and the star-studded cast you'd expect, including: Luciano Pavarotti, Paula Abdul, Cher, Bob Dylan, Barbara Streisand, Kanye West, Jay-Z, Lady Gaga, Otis Redding, Ray Charles, Placido Domingo, Renee Fleming, Bon Jovi, Wynonna Judd, BB King, Patti LaBelle, Carlos Santana, Nicolette Sheridan, Teri Hatcher and others...Add to cart