martedì 31 maggio 2011

Believing Brain by Michael Shermer (Times Books)





















Bestselling author Michael Shermer's comprehensive and provocative theory on how beliefs are born, formed, reinforced, challenged, changed, and extinguished.
In this work synthesizing thirty years of research, psychologist, historian of science, and the world's best-known skeptic Michael Shermer upends the traditional thinking about how humans form beliefs about the world. Simply put, beliefs come first and explanations for beliefs follow. The brain, Shermer argues, is a belief engine. From sensory data flowing in through the senses, the brain naturally begins to look for and find patterns, and then infuses those patterns with meaning. Our brains connect the dots of our world into meaningful patterns that explain why things happen, and these patterns become beliefs. Once beliefs are formed the brain begins to look for and find confirmatory evidence in support of those beliefs, which accelerates the process of reinforcing them, and round and round the process goes in a positive-feedback loop of belief confirmation. Shermer outlines the numerous cognitive tools our brains engage to reinforce our beliefs as truths.
Interlaced with his theory of belief, Shermer provides countless real-world examples of how this process operates, from politics, economics, and religion to conspiracy theories, the supernatural, and the paranormal. Ultimately, he demonstrates why science is the best tool ever devised to determine whether or not a belief matches reality.

giovedì 26 maggio 2011

Gone with a Handsomer Man di Michael Lee West (Minotaur Books)



















Take one out-of-work pastry chef . . .
Teeny Templeton believes that her life is finally on track. She's getting married, she's baking her own wedding cake, and she's leaving her troubled past behind. And then? She finds her fiance playing naked badminton with a couple of gorgeous, skanky chicks.
Add a whole lot of trouble . . .
Needless to say, the wedding is off. Adding insult to injury, her fiance slaps a restraining order on her. When he's found dead a few days later, all fingers point to Teeny.
And stir like crazy!
Her only hope is through an old boyfriend-turned-lawyer, the guy who broke her heart a decade ago. But dredging up the past brings more than skeletons out of the closet, and Teeny doesn't know who she can trust. With evidence mounting and the heat turning up, Teeny must also figure out where to live, how to support herself, how to clear her name, and how to protect her heart.

domenica 22 maggio 2011

The Dead Syndicate: The Trial of the Archnemesis by Marc L. Abbott (Hobbcat Publishing, Inc.)





















They are called The Dead Syndicate. They are hell's government, law enforcement and army made up of fallen angels and demons. They have spent centuries fighting the Archangels, heavens angelic orders and corrupting the lives of men. The Syndicate thought they were succeeding, until a traitor is discovered in their midst. When one of their own is caught committing acts of treason The Dead Syndicate turn their fight against him. Thrown into the Purgatorial Prison to await trail, the traitor faces the forces of an ambitious prosecutor working for the Syndicate. As the prosecutor begins to build his case, his team uncovers an intricate plot that could take down the Syndicate and, possibly, the entire realm of hell.In a place where treachery reigns and hopes end, the Trial of the Archnemesis begins. Judgment will be decided in the ultimate battle of good against evil.

venerdì 20 maggio 2011

On China by Henry Kissinger (Penguin Press)

















In this sweeping and insightful history, Henry Kissinger turns for the first time at book-length to a country he has known intimately for decades, and whose modern relations with the West he helped shape. Drawing on historical records as well as his conversations with Chinese leaders over the past forty years, Kissinger examines how China has approached diplomacy, strategy, and negotiation throughout its history, and reflects on the consequences for the global balance of power in the 21st century.
Since no other country can claim a more powerful link to its ancient past and classical principles, any attempt to understand China's future world role must begin with an appreciation of its long history. For centuries, China rarely encountered other societies of comparable size and sophistication; it was the "Middle Kingdom," treating the peoples on its periphery as vassal states. At the same time, Chinese statesmen-facing threats of invasion from without, and the contests of competing factions within-developed a canon of strategic thought that prized the virtues of subtlety, patience, and indirection over feats of martial prowess.
In "On China," Kissinger examines key episodes in Chinese foreign policy from the classical era to the present day, with a particular emphasis on the decades since the rise of Mao Zedong. He illuminates the inner workings of Chinese diplomacy during such pivotal events as the initial encounters between China and modern European powers, the formation and breakdown of the Sino-Soviet alliance, the Korean War, Richard Nixon's historic trip to Beijing, and three crises in the Taiwan Straits. Drawing on his extensive personal experience with four generation of Chinese leaders, he brings to life towering figures such as Mao, Zhou Enlai, and Deng Xiaoping, revealing how their different visions have shaped China's modern destiny. With his singular vantage on U.S.-China relations, Kissinger traces the evolution of this fraught but crucial relationship over the past 60 years, following its dramatic course from estrangement to strategic partnership to economic interdependence, and toward an uncertain future. With a final chapter on the emerging superpower's 21st-century world role, "On China" provides an intimate historical perspective on Chinese foreign affairs from one of the premier statesmen of the 20th century.

mercoledì 18 maggio 2011

Britney Spears - Hold It Against Me



Music video by Britney Spears performing Hold It Against Me. (C) 2011 JIVE Records, a unit of Sony Music Entertainment on Youtube/Vevo

sabato 14 maggio 2011

Social Boom! by Jeffrey Gitomer (FT Press)




















"Social BOOM!" contains every aspect of social media, including the business periphery (blog, personal website, e-zine) that you need in order to create the real law of attraction. When you create a connection, it's an indicator that that prospect, or that customer, or that person wants to continue the online relationship, which may lead to real business. Graduate from social media to business social media by creating value that others will perceive as important to fulfilling their needs. As you go through each aspect of this foundation-building, platform-building book, you will read the ideas that Gitomer and others are using right now. None of the ideas are random. All of them are fully tested and can be implemented by you, too. None of the ideas contain solicitation (buy my product, make a lot of money). All of them get you and your brand out there in a systematic way that will bring in dollars. Gitomer has invited a number of social media experts to "guest speak" in the book, to help you get a wider range of views and options. The best part about this book is that the minute you begin to read it, if your laptop or mobile device is handy, you can begin to implement it in the same minute.

mercoledì 11 maggio 2011

Sixkill by Robert B. Parker (Putnam Adult)



















An extraordinary new Spenser novel from the beloved "New York Times"-bestselling author.
On location in Boston, bad-boy actor Jumbo Nelson is accused of the rape and murder of a young woman. From the start the case seems fishy, so the Boston PD calls on Spenser to investigate. The situation doesn't look good for Jumbo, whose appetites for food, booze, and sex are as outsized as his name. He was the studio's biggest star, but he's become their biggest liability.
In the course of the investigation, Spenser encounters Jumbo's bodyguard: a young, former football-playing Native American named Zebulon Sixkill. Sixkill acts tough, but Spenser sees something more within the young man. Despite the odd circumstances, the two forge an unlikely alliance, with Spenser serving as mentor for Sixkill. As the case grows darker and secrets about both Jumbo and the dead girl come to light, it's Spenser-with Sixkill at his side-who must put things right.

domenica 8 maggio 2011

Judas by Lady Gaga



On Youtube/Vevo
Music video by Lady Gaga performing Judas. Get the track on iTunes: http://bit.ly/lTnYPw (C) 2011 Interscope Records

venerdì 6 maggio 2011

10th Anniversary by James Patterson & Maxine Paetro (Little Brown and Company)




















For every secret Detective Lindsay Boxer's long-awaited wedding celebration becomes a distant memory when she is called to investigate a horrendous crime a badly injured teenage girl is left for dead, and her newborn baby is nowhere to be found. Lindsay discovers that not only is there no trace of the criminals--but that the victim may be keeping secrets as well. For every lie.
At the same time, Assistant District Attorney Yuki Castellano is prosecuting the biggest case of her life--a woman who has been accused of murdering her husband in front of her two young children. Yuki's career rests on a guilty verdict, so when Lindsay finds evidence that could save the defendant, she is forced to choose. Should she trust her best friend or follow her instinct?
There's a different way to die Lindsay's every move is watched by her new boss, Lieutenant Jackson Brady, and when the pressure to find the baby begins interfering with her new marriage to Joe, she wonders if she'll ever be able to start a family. With James Patterson's white-hot speed and unquenchable action, "10th Anniversary" is the most deliciously chilling Women's Murder Club book ever.

mercoledì 4 maggio 2011

Laura Gianetti present Hidden Leaves in My Mind curated by Mario Margani









Grimmuseum is happy to present the first Laura Gianetti solo show in Berlin as the third exhibition of the Grim Solo program, devoted to young and emerging artists still unknown to the wider Berlin public. “Hidden Leaves in My Mind” consist of a new in progress drawing-project that will be put in dialogue with a selection of Gianetti´s latest works, outlining some of the topics Laura approached since she moved to Berlin. The artist’s studio is not necessarily the main place for the production of an artwork anymore. Artists are working more and more into the public space, but sometimes a work can unexpectedly come to the light between the long waits and the void gaps of a second job. This latter can provide for financial safety, allowing the development of an art career, but it can be frustrating, taking out time and energies. Laura’s experience with this kind of double life, between the willing to follow her own research – mainly through photography and painting – and an aseptic call center, has given birth to a drawing series. Everything that was available were just a pen and a sheet of paper, but thanks to the huge amount of time spent while waiting for a call they turned into the best instruments to draw sequences of accurate and surreal visions, distorted bodies, growing plants and an haunting invasion of leaves. It’s well known that the leaf is the most important organ in plants life: it allows photosyntesis, respiration, transpiration, guttation. A fully artificial place such as a call center lacks of any natural light or fresh air, so being unsuitable for leaves as well as for living beings. On the other hand, the leaves come back to the paper both as a sign of the willing to escape and as a relieving iterative gesture: expression of a mood and cathartic ritual. “This Was Supposed To Be the Future” is a painting series on jute portraying six animals – a sheep, a monkey, a cavy, a rooster, a living pig and a dead one – which was carried and positioned in different areas inside a snowy park – the Volkspark Hasenheide - during a performance in 2010. We can picture Laura shifting in few hours from one of the highest expressions of artificial life to a natural open space where she placed her "animals", as if it was the only spot in which they should actually live. In spite of the large gap in size – from an A4 format to a large canvas – the amount of working hours on one drawing and on a painting is almost identical. The only differences are the location of work and the state of mind. Establishing a photographic comparison between negative and positive, the monochrome drawings from the "darkroom" of a call center hide energetic paintings and reinvigorating walks. Presenting together two opposite poles of her experience is a way for Laura to close the circle, but it also witnesses to the fact that a chance to create is often hidden in unpredictable places and states that are recognized cliché of creative castration.

Laura Gianetti (1980, Livorno) lives and works between Berlin and Italy. She graduated at the Fine Arts Academy of Rome in painting and photography and has worked as assistant for Paolo W. Tamburella. Some of her works are published on magazines, books, cd, vynil and videos. She is currently working as photoreporter for art events and venues in Berlin. Latest solo exhibitions: “You can find me if you want me in the garden”, Prodezze Fuori Area, Rome, 2011; “Corpographie”, Casale della Cervelletta, Rome, 2008. Main group exhibitions: “Biennale Internazionale di Pittura, Scultura e Grafica”, Castello Carlo V, Lecce, 2010; “Lib(e)ro d’arte”, Museo Hendrick C. Andersen (Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna), Rome, 2008; “Premio Sinestesie”, Museo Michetti, Chieti, 2008; “Primaverile Romana”, Galleria il Saggiatore, Rome, 2008; “Premio Nazionale delle Arti”, Galleria d’Arte Moderna alle Ciminiere, Catania, 2008; “5° Premio Internazionale Biennale d'Incisione", Pistoia, 2007; "Fiera Immagina", S.I.P.E.R. Fiere di Reggio Emilia, 2006.

Hidden Leaves in My Mind by Laura Gianetti

curated by Mario Margani

Opening reception 5. May 2011

6. - 22. May 2011

Opening hours: wed-sun 14-19

Free entry

Grimmuseum

www.grimmuseum.com

Fichte Strasse 2 - Berlin

domenica 1 maggio 2011

The Pale King: An Unfinished Novel by David Foster Wallace (Little Brown and Company)





















The agents at the IRS Regional Examination Center in Peoria, Illinois, appear ordinary enough to newly arrived trainee David Foster Wallace. But as he immerses himself in a routine so tedious and repetitive that new employees receive boredom-survival training, he learns of the extraordinary variety of personalities drawn to this strange calling. And he has arrived at a moment when forces within the IRS are plotting to eliminate even what little humanity and dignity the work still has.
"The Pale King" remained unfinished at the time of David Foster Wallace's death, but it is a deeply compelling and satisfying novel, hilarious and fearless and as original as anything Wallace ever undertook. It grapples directly with ultimate questions--questions of life's meaning and of the value of work and society--through characters imagined with the interior force and generosity that were Wallace's unique gifts. Along the way it suggests a new idea of heroism and commands infinite respect for one of the most daring writers of our time.