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Ignazio Silone
Ignazio Silone by Stephen Alcorn, 1982.

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O'Brian, Patrick (2000). Blue at the Mizzen. New York, W.W. Norton.
With bittersweet pleasure, readers may deem this 20th - and possibly final - installment in O'Brian's highly regarded series featuring Capt. Jack Aubrey of the English Royal Navy and Stephen Maturin, ship's doctor, the best of the lot. Post-Waterloo, the frigate Surprise sets sail to South America as a "hydrographical vessel," ostensibly to survey the Straits of Magellan and Chile's southern coast. In fact, Jack and Stephen are to offer help to the Chilean rebels trying to break free from Spain. On their way down the coast of West Africa, romance blossoms for both men. Jack's liaison, with his cousin, Isobel, in Gibraltar) is brief, but widower Stephen's passion for Christine Wood, a naturalist who has been his correspondent for some time, turns serious in Sierra Leone. The doctor's correspondence with Christine begins with accounts of his explorations in Africa and South America, referencing, say, an "anomalous nuthatch" or the "etymology of doldrum," but they're quite wonderful love letters, functioning as a chorus to the action. Once in Chile, despite the conflict between opposing rebel camps, Jack leads a successful raid on a treasure fort in Valdivia, followed by the seizure of a Peruvian frigate to be turned over to the Chilean rebels, triumphs that reap him a just reward; at that point, readers will learn the title's significance. Throughout, familiar characters abound and entertain, especially the amusingly nasty steward, Killick, and Stephen's "loblolly girl" (nurse), Poll Skeeping. And finally, there is Horatio Hanson, bastard son of a nobleman, who comes on board as a midshipman, a dashing young foil for the ship's elders. O'Brian has rightfully been compared to Jane Austen, but one wonders if even she would have done justice to "those extraordinary hollow dwellings, sometimes as beautiful as they were comfortless." To use one of Stephen's favorite expressions, "What joy!"

O'Brian, Patrick (1995). The Commodore
. New York, W.W. Norton.
After several installments of gallivanting around the South Seas, Aubrey and Maturin return home to England, where the surgeon-cum-intelligence-agent discovers that his wife has disappeared. As if such a domestic crisis weren't enough, the intrepid pair are also dispatched to the Gulf of Guinea (to suppress the slave trade) and to Ireland (to rebuff an impending French invasion.) O'Brian's stunning range, coupled with his mind-bending command of minutiae, explain why James Hamilton-Paterson has called him "the Homer of the Napoleonic Wars."

O'Brian, Patrick (1979). Desolation Island
. New York, Stein and Day.
Commissioned to rescue Governor Bligh of Bounty fame, Captain Jack Aubrey and his friend and surgeon Stephen Maturin sail the Leopard to Australia with a hold full of convicts. Among them is a beautiful and dangerous spy--and a treacherous disease that decimates the crew. With a Dutch man-of-war to windward, the under-manned, out-gunned Leopard sails for her life into the freezing waters of the Antarctic where, in mountainous seas, the Duthman closes.

O'Brian, Patrick (1984). The Far Side of the World
. London, Collins.
Jack Aubrey, a brilliant and fearless captain in Nelson's navy, accepts a mission that will test his abilities to the limit: he is to set sail immediately for Cape Horn, to intercept a powerful frigate intent on wreaking havoc among British whalers. Aubrey's beloved ship, HMS Surprise, is up to the task, but many of her sailors are untried. Aubrey's confidant, ship's surgeon Stephen Maturin, has orders of his own in the world of secret intelligence. As the Surprise and her crew draw closer to the enemy, their journey grows ever more dangerous: murder, shipwreck, and a desperate rescue attempt await them in the far reaches of the Pacific.

O'Brian, Patrick (1979). The Fortune of War
. London, Collins.
Captain Jack Aubrey, R.N.,arrives in the Dutch East Indies to find himself appointed to the command of the fastest and best-armed frigate in the navy. He and his friend Stephen Maturin take passage for England in a dispatch vessel. But the War of 1812 breaks out while they are en route. Bloody actions precipitate them both into new and unexpected scenes where Stephen's past activities as a secret agent return on hime with a vengance.

O'Brian, Patrick (1973). H.M.S. Surprise
. Philadelphia, Lippincott.
This third segment takes Jack Aubrey to the Indian subcontinent, where both the waters and the terrain are full of unfamiliar dangers. There is, however, a prize in the offing: a flotilla of French ships sent to attack the China Fleet. If Aubrey and Maturin can intercept the French, their fortunes will be made.

O'Brian, Patrick (1998). The Hundred Days
. New York, W.W. Norton & Co.
Napoleon, escaped from Elba, pursues his enemies across Europe like a vengeful phoenix. If he can corner the British and Prussians before their Russian and Austrian allies arrive, his genius will lead the French armies to triumph at Waterloo. In the Balkans, preparing a thrust northwards into Central Europe to block the Russians and Austrians, a horde of Muslim mercenaries is gathering. They are inclined toward Napoleon because of his conversion to Islam during the Egyptian campaign, but they will not move without a shipment of gold ingots from Sheik Ibn Hazm which, according to British intelligence, is on its way via camel caravan to the coast of North Africa. It is this gold that Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin must at all costs intercept. The fate of Europe hinges on their desperate mission.

O'Brian, Patrick (1981). The Ionian Mission
. London, Collins.
This entry in the Aubrey/Maturin series finds Captain Jack Aubrey "shoved into a temporary command in that rotten old Worcester," a poorly built ship. Worse, he's off to the Mediterranean to join the Royal Navy's endless blockade of the French port of Toulon. Aside from a chance encounter with a French man-of-war that triggers a brief but extremely colorful battle, there is little excitement as HMS Worcester settles in with the other blockading ships, some with crews showing signs of strain from remaining constantly alert but inactive. Second in command at Toulon is Admiral Harte, no friend of Aubrey's (who cuckolded the admiral years ago). Harte dispatches Aubrey on a delicate mission to the politically volatile Ionian coast. Although he has the succor of Stephen Maturin, a seasoned intelligence agent, and Professor Graham, an expert on the region's customs, Aubrey is caught in a complex net of Turkish politics and rivalries. And while Harte seems to offer all reasonable backing for the mission, Aubrey knows that should he fail, the admiral would like nothing better than to throw him to the dogs.

O'Brian, Patrick (1992). The Letter of Marque
. New York, W.W. Norton.
In the early 1800s, Captain Jack Aubrey, unjustly drummed out of service, is now master of the "letter of marque" (privateer) frigate Surprise, secretly owned by Stephen Maturin, ship's doctor/naturalist/abandoned husband/opium-eater and intelligence agent. The major events here are two great sea victories that make Jack a rich folk-hero, and Stephen's winning back of his wife and breaking his laudanum habit. Jack's seamanship and heroism are complemented by Stephen's absent-minded brilliance, their friendship cemented by their shared music-making (violin and cello, respectively). The early-19th-century locutions are fascinating, as are the evocation of period shipboard life (including ship-provisioning and naval lingo), Whitehall politics (rotten boroughs, etc.) and drug addiction (coca leaf-chewing as well as opium-eating). Seafarers and landlubbers alike will enjoy this swift, witty tale of money and love.

O'Brian, Patrick (1994). Master and Commander
. New York, W.W. Norton.
This, the first in the splendid series of Jack Aubrey novels, establishes the friendship between Captain Aubrey, Royal Navy, and Stephen Maturin, ship's surgeon and intelligence agent, against the thrilling backdrop of the Napoleonic wars. Details of life aboard a man-of-war in Nelson's navy are faultlessly rendered: the conversational idiom of the officers in the ward room and the men on the lower deck, the food, the floggings, the mysteries of the wind and the rigging, and the road of broadsides as the great ships close in battle.

O'Brian, Patrick (1991). The Mauritius Command
. New York, W. W. Norton & Company.
Ashore without a command--and on half-pay to boot--Jack Aubrey's prayers are answered when Stephen Maturin shows up with a secret mission for him. The two men have been ordered to the Cape of Good Hope. There they hope to dislodge the French garrisons on the islands of Mauritius and La Reunion. Alas, two of their own colleagues--a dilettante and a martinet--prove to be nearly as great an obstacle as the French themselves.

O'Brian, Patrick (1991). The Nutmeg of Consolation
. New York, Norton.
Readers will welcome the reappearance here of elegant Stephen Maturin in O'Brian's excellent 19th-century seafarer series. Maturin is a ship's doctor, naturalist, spy, musician, ex-opium eater and, we're reminded here, terrific swordsman. Capt. Jack Aubrey, RN, MP, is a popular hero for his success against Napoleon, less introspective, but as subtly drawn as Maturin and as avid a musician. Last seen in The Thirteen-Gun Salute the two were shipwrecked on a barren isle in the South China Sea. After a bitter fight with Dyaks and Malays they reach Batavia, where Governor Raffles gives Aubrey the eponymic Dutch sloop ("a tight, sweet, newly-coppered, broad-buttocked litle ship, a solace to any man's heart") to continue his circumnavigation of the globe. As usual the chief joys are in the details of the food, drink and clothes of the era, with those of the rain forests, kangaroos and platypuses added here. On the other hand, early Sydney's squalor is matched by its brutality.

O'Brian, Patrick (1994). Post Captain
. New York, W.W. Norton.
The year is 1803, and that scalawag Napoleon Bonaparte has gone to war again. For Captain Jack Aubrey, who has fled to France to escape his creditors, this is doubly alarming news. In short order the captain is interned, makes his escape across the French countryside, and leads a ship into battle. And again, his adventures are cleverly counterpointed by those of his alter ego Stephen Maturin.

O'Brian, Patrick (1994). The Rendezvous and Other Stories
. New York, W.W. Norton.
His reputation as a novelist secure, O'Brian (The Wine-Dark Sea) here seeks to cement his reputation as a short- story writer. The author has established a deservedly devoted following in this country for his Jack Aubrey/Stephen Maturin 18th-century naval series, but this group of 27 stories, originally published between 1950 and 1974, is not, taken as a whole, as strong. He is much interested in obscure journeys across frontiers and unhappy marriages, and many of the tales are more vignettes than classic short stories. Early entries feature solitary men who are invariably disoriented and buffeted by natural forces (or by forces implicitly beyond natural ones) while engaged in fishing, fox hunting, pigeon shoots, and other outdoor pursuits. In "The Happy Despatch,'' for example, Woolen, a poverty-stricken Englishman stuck in a horrid marriage and living as an outcast in an Irish village, stumbles across a stash of golden coins while fishing high in the hills. What seems a sudden shift in his fortunes turns into something very like a horror story in the abrupt, enigmatic ending. In "The Tunnel at the Frontier,'' a befuddled traveler appears to be passing from life to death."Lying in the Sun'' offers these thoughts from a man on the beach with his insipid wife: "If only she would go away, he would be quite fond of her; he would indeed, and he would do all he possibly could to be agreeable by post.'' Later stories are less claustrophobic and more striking, especially the dark and bitter "The Chian Wine,'' in which the planned ceremonial drinking of an ancient cask of spirits is precluded by timeless violence, and the volume's unexpectedly amusing final entry, "On the Wolfsberg,'' wherein yet another solitary wanderer (female this time) learns a startling truth. Eloquent and elegant as expected, these often intriguing tales are never quite as enthralling as one might hope.

O'Brian, Patrick (1994). The Reverse of the Medal
. New York, W.W. Norton.
Captain Jack Aubrey, R.N., ashore after a successful cruise, is persuaded by a casual acquaintance to make certain investments in the City. This innocent decision ensnares him in the London criminal underground and in government espionage--the province of his friend Stephen Maturin. Is Aubrey's humiliation and the threatened ruin of his career a deliberate plot?

O'Brian, Patrick (1992). The Surgeon's Mate
. New York, W.W. Norton.
O'Brian's superb series on the early-19th-century adventures of Jack Aubrey, a Royal Navy officer, and his friend Stephen Maturin, Navy surgeon and naturalist, continues with a look at the darker side of Maturin's life: his work in British intelligence. Aubrey, Maturin and Diana Villiers (Maturin's fickle and enigmatic love) are passengers on a packet ship from Nova Scotia to England when two American privateers give chase. They are hunting Maturin, who has compromised U.S. spy networks. The Americans are eluded, and upon reaching England, Maturin sets off to France. Armed with safe conduct papers, he lectures on natural history and installs Villiers in Paris. Suspicious French agents try to bait Maturin but he refuses to be lured into an indiscretion. On his return to London, Maturin is sent to woo Catalan officers and troops from the French cause to the British. Aubrey provides transport, but despite his best support, including staging a splendid charade chase on the water, the mission takes a nasty turn when their ship founders; seized by the French, Maturin and Aubrey are hauled off to Paris's infamous Temple Prison.

O'Brian, Patrick (1992). The Thirteen-Gun Salute
. New York, W.W. Norton.
The 18th in O'Brian's Jack Aubrey series will please current fans and likely make new ones. Newly rich Aubrey (The Letter of Marque), again a Royal Navy captain and even a "rotten-borough" M.P., is given command of the frigate Diane with orders to bring king's envoy Fox to conclude a treaty with the sultan of Borneo before Napoleon does. Aboard is Jack's friend Dr. Maturin, English secret agent and avid naturalist. After a placid trip (via Antarctica) and some stormy local politics (involving two English traitors and the sultan's catamite) the treaty is made. Fox's growing arrogance breeds ill will and when homeward-bound Diane hits a reef Jack gladly sends the envoy ahead in a cutter. O'Brian's style has been compared with Jane Austen's: even the dinners (in country house, London, ship's mess, sultan's palace, Buddhist monastery) are distinguished wittily. Perhaps the most charming segment is Maturin's idyllic stay in a remote valley, where he blissfully encounters and studies a variety of tame exotic beasts.

O'Brian, Patrick (1992). Treason's Harbour
. New York, W.W. Norton.
This novel, the ninth installment of 20 in what is certainly the greatest series about the British Navy ever written--indeed, one of the most successful of its magnitude ever written in any genre--is not well served by its reader. Royal Shakespeare Company and National Theatre actor Pigott-Smith has an appropriately English accent, but his characters' voices lack consistency and sensitivity to the subtleties of O'Brian's pen. In this recording, the swashbuckling Captain Aubrey and the ironic, stealthy Stephen Maturin, his ship's surgeon, do not step onto the stage of the Napoleonic wars as the nuanced heroes O'Brian's readers have come to know over three decades. Pigott-Smith's Maturin lacks compassion; his Aubrey lacks intelligence. The narrative turns from nefarious intrigues in Malta to an amazing mission in the Red Sea and back again, but the drama is conveyed with neither satisfying variation of tempo nor ringing cadence. While O'Brian's devotees will find all the naval and historical details they usually delight in, they will despair at hearing how this production tramples upon his genius in portraying shockingly real characters in an utterly foreign, far-off time.

O'Brian, Patrick (1993). The Truelove
. New York, W.W. Norton.
The musings and adventures of 18th-century sailors Jack Aubrey and Stephen Maturin (The Ionian Missionary, The Surgeon's Mate, et al.) follow the winds to the South Pacific. On this cruise: a shipboard wedding and a Polynesian dust-up. With Britain between wars for the moment, Captain Aubrey shifts his flag to The Truelove, a merchantman with a military past, and sails to Sydney and points east on a leisurely semiofficial cruise. As usual, Jack is accompanied by his friend Maturin, physician, naturalist, and early intelligence agent, and, as on previous voyages, the crew includes Mr. Martin, a clergyman who shares Stephen's great interest in birds of the world. This time, though, there is a bird on board--a prostitute smuggled out of Sydney by a smitten young officer. She's bad news. Even after she is wed to the smitten and violently jealous Lt. Oakes, Clarissa sees no reason not to scratch the itches of her husband's messmates. Discipline goes to pot, and Jack decides to disembark the young couple at the earliest opportunity. But nothing happens quickly when one must wait for wind. There is plenty of time for Clarissa to consult her physician, who learns that the lady is left cold by the marriage act and, in discussing her depressing past, also learns the identity of a traitor in the highest level of government. When Truelove at last finds the wind, it is off to a Hawaiianish island and rousing battle to install a government sympathetic to his Britannic majesty George III.

O'Brian, Patrick (1994). The Wine-Dark Sea
. New York, W.W. Norton.
Though the Jack Aubrey-Stephen Maturin books can be profitably read separately, as fans know, together they read as one long, wonderful novel. This 16th installment (following The Truelove) is no doubt the best chapter yet. In the early 1800s, Bluff Jack, captain of the privateer Surprise , steers his frigate across the Pacific to South America, around Cape Horn and into the Atlantic, taking French and American prizes, fighting off a Yankee Man of War and suffering dire eye and leg wounds for his trouble. Subtle Stephen, ship's doctor and British intelligence agent, almost pulls off a coup in Peru and must escape across the Andes, losing some toes to frostbite for his efforts. Favorite characters reappear here: Killick, Jack's crabby steward; Sarah and Emily Sweeting, precocious Melanesian waifs attached to Maturin's sick-berth; Sam, Jack's illegitimate black son and rising Churchman. The naval actions are bang-on and bang-up--fast, furious and bloody--and the Andean milieu is as vivid as the shipboard scenes. As usual, readers can revel in the symbiotic friendship of Jack and Stephen, who make for a marvelous duo, whether in their violin and cello duets or in their sharp dialogue.

O'Brian, Patrick (1997). The Yellow Admiral
. New York, W.W. Norton.
As befits a popular and enduring fictional hero, Captain Jack Aubrey of the Royal Navy is besieged on all sides in the 18th installment of O'Brian's splendid 19th-century historical adventure series (The Commodore, etc.). Jack is fighting expensive, possibly ruinous, legal battles with slavers, as well as with rich landowners trying to enclose common lands around his family estate. He must also deal with a Navy superior with a financial interest in the enclosure, who is trying to wreck Jack's career. (If a captain becomes an admiral without a command he is "in the cant phrase, yellowed"). Jack, on blockade duty off Brittany, frets that the impending peace will indeed yellow him; and he's also in for some rough marital weather with his wife, Sophie. Meanwhile, the series' other hero, Irish-Catalan physician Stephen Maturin, who's Jack's best friend, connects in "the dark of the moon" with Chilean independence leaders who may hire Jack to head their own young navy. O'Brian is at the top of his elegant form here. He offers a wealth of sly humor (Navy officers' talk is "really not fit for mixed company because of its profoundly nautical character"), some splendid set pieces (a bare-knuckle boxing match, lively sea actions), characters who are palpably real and, as always, lapidary prose. This is splendid storytelling from a true master.

O'Brien, Brendan (1999). The Long War: The IRA and Sinn Fein
. Dublin, Ireland, O'Brien Press.
The Long War tells the story of the IRA and Sinn Fein from their beginnings right up to the Good Friday Agreement in Easter 1998 and beyond. It tracks the IRA's military strategy, their bombing and killing campaign, coupled with massive arms supplies from Libya and the long, torturous, at times secret, journey led by Gerry Adams and Martin McGuinness through two ceasefires to a negotiated compromise. Contains major source material and details the roles of key peacemakers in Ireland, Britain and America and also of the dissident militarists who intend continuing the war against Britain.

O'Brien, Geoffrey (1993). The Phantom Empire
. New York, Norton.
The Phantom Empire is a brillliant, daring, and utterly original book that analyzes (even as it exemplifies) the efect that the image saturation of a hundred years of moving pictures has had on human culture and consciousness.

O'Brien, Geoffrey (2002). Dream Time: Chapters from the Sixties
. Washington, D.C., Counterpoint.
O'Brien's kaleidoscopic portrayal of the cultural and political ferment of the 1960s is framed in a style at once oracular, lyrical, impressionistic and ironic: "You parachute into a country without maps "; "The television was an open funnel, with its other end stuck in the middle of everything." Overheated and overintellectualized, these 13 vignettes nevertheless succeed in filtering out the decade's real promise from its false hopes and dead ends. O'Brien, author of Hard-Boiled America, evokes complacent suburbanites, pseudorebellious youth, the deaths of Marilyn Monroe and John Kennedy, hippies, "Camelot" politicians, Maoists and film critics. He paints U.S. politics as an arena where the two major parties had become little more than "rival PR firms." Even as he derides the excesses, he rethinks the certitudes and retraces the experimental forays of an adventurous decade.

O'Brien, Patrick Karl (2002). Atlas of World History
. New York, NY, Oxford University Press.
This useful resource is also dangerously absorbing, allowing readers to pore over charts, maps and short articles on such subjects as the golden age of Athens, the 16th-century expansion of the Mughal Empire through India, the foreign policy of Mao Zedong and the break-up of the Soviet Union. This overview of human history, with 450 maps and 160 illustrations, begins with the emergence of Homo sapiens and culminates with the post-WWII era, moving among various regions of the globe in chronological order. It's divided into sections on ancient, medieval, early modern, Enlightenment and 20th century history, with easy-to-read two-page entries covering such subjects as "Barbarian Invasions of the Roman Empire, 100-500" and "The Development of Australia and New Zealand Since 1790." The section on postwar life includes charts showing migration patterns, female enfranchisement, distribution of wealth across the globe and changes in the environment.

O'Casey, Sean (2000). Three Dublin Plays: The Shadow of a Gunman, Juno and the Paycock, The Plough and the Stars
. London, Faber & Faber.
Three early plays by Sean O'Casey-arguably his three greatest-demonstrate vividly O'Casey's ability to convey the reality of life and the depth of human emotion, specifically in Dublin before and during the Irish civil war of 1922-23, but, truly, throughout the known universe. In mirroring the lives of the Dublin poor, from the tenement dwellers in The Shadow of a Gunman and Juno and the Paycock to the bricklayer, street vendor, and charwoman in The Plough and the Stars, Sean O'Casey conveys with urgency and eloquence the tiny details that create a total character as well as the terrors, large and small, that the constant threat of political violence inevitably brings.

O'Connor, Flannery (1988). Collected Works
. New York, NY, Library of America: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by Viking Press.
Wickedly funny tales of human misfits who, through peculiar and often violent turns of events, run up against the limits of worldly wisdom. The only complete one-volume collection of O'Connor's works includes all of her novels and short-story collections - Wise Blood, The Violent Bear It Away, A Good Man Is Hard to Find, Everything That Rises Must Converge - with nine other stories, selected essays, and a selection of 259 witty, spirited, and revealing letters, several never before published."Indispensable for the literary scholar and a joy for the general reader . . . a great book." - New York Newsday. "Beautifully bound and printed, and meticulously and lovingly edited, this volume is clearly destined to serve henceforth as the authoritative text for this author." - Choice

O'Flaherty, Wendy Doniger (1984). Dreams, Illusion, and Other Realities
. Chicago, University of Chicago Press.
"Wendy Doniger O'Flaherty weaves a brilliant analysis of the complex role of dreams and dreaming in Indian religion, philosophy, literature, and art. In her creative hands, enchanting Indian myths and stories illuminate and are illuminated by authors as different as Aeschylus, Plato, Freud, Jung, Kurt Godel, Thomas Kuhn, Borges, Picasso, Sir Ernst Gombrich, and many others. This richly suggestive book challenges many of our fundamental assumptions about ourselves and our world." - Mark C. Taylor, New York Times Book Review

"The book is firm and convincing once you appreciate its central point, which is that in traditional Hindu thought the dream isn't an accident or byway of experience, but rather the locus of epistemology. In its willful confusion of categories, its teasing readiness to blur the line between the imagined and the real, the dream actually embodies the whole problem of knowledge. O'Flaherty wants to make your mental flesh creep, and she succeeds." - Mark Caldwell, Village Voice

O'Gorman, James F. (1998). ABC of Architecture
. Philadelphia, Pa., University of Pennsylvnia Press.
James F. O'Gorman's ABC of Architecture is a concise, illuminating introduction to the complex subject of architecture. O'Gorman himself calls this slim volume a "modest grammar" on the subject, but it's much more than that. In elegant prose O'Gorman teaches architectural theory as he teaches history. If you've ever wondered about arches, domes, or the importance of concrete, ABC of Architecture will likely have the answers you're looking for. For those unfamiliar with architecture, O'Gorman includes a glossary of terms and suggestions for dictionaries.

O'Hanlon, Redmond (1987). Into the Heart of Borneo
. New York, Vintage Books.
The story of a 1983 journey to the center of Borneo, which no expedition had attempted since 1926. O'Hanlon, accompanied by friend and poet James Fenton and three native guides brings wit and humor to a dangerous journey.

O'Hanlon, Redmond (1990). In Trouble Again: A Journey between the Orinoco and the Amazon
. New York, Vintage Books.
The author traveled uncharted rivers in a dugout canoe, on a four-month journey to Venezuelan Amazonia. His intention: to meet--and "party" with--the Yanomami tribe, reputedly the most violent people on earth."His descriptions of landscape and animals are superb.

O'Hanlon, Redmond (1997). No Mercy: A Journey to the Heart of the Congo
. New York, Alfred A. Knopf: Distributed by Random House, Inc.
Lit with humor, full of African birdsong and told with great narrative force, No Mercy is the magnum opus of "probably the finest writer of travel books in the English language," as Bill Bryson wrote in Outside, "and certainly the most daring."

Redmond O'Hanlon has journeyed among headhunters in deepest Borneo with the poet James Fenton, and amid the most reticent, imperilled and violent tribe in the Amazon Basin with a night-club manager. This, however, is his boldest journey yet. Accompanied by Lary Shaffer--an American friend and animal behaviorist, a man of imperfect health and brave decency--he enters the unmapped swamp-forests of the People's Republic of the Congo, in search of a dinosaur rumored to have survived in a remote prehistoric lake.

The flora and fauna of the Congo are unrivalled, and with matchless passion O'Hanlon describes scores of rare and fascinating animals: eagles and parrots, gorillas and chimpanzees, swamp antelope and forest elephants. But as he was repeatedly warned, the night belongs to Africa, and threats both natural (cobras, crocodiles, lethal insects) and supernatural (from all-powerful sorcerers to Samale, a beast whose three-clawed hands rip you across the back) make this a saga of much fear and trembling. Omnipresent too are ecological depredations, political and tribal brutality, terrible illness and unnecessary suffering among the forest pygmies, and an appalling waste of human life throughout this little-explored region.

An elegant, disturbing and deeply compassionate evocation of a vanishing world, extraordinary in its depth, scope and range of characters, No Mercy is destined to become a landmark work of travel, adventure and natural history. A quest for the meaning of magic and the purpose of religion, and a celebration of the comforts and mysteries of science, it is also--and above all--a powerful guide to the humanity that prevails even in the very heart of darkness.

O'Mara, Veronica Jane and Fionnuala O'Reilly (1993). A Trifle, a Coddle, a Fry: An Irish Literary Cookbook
. Wakefield, Moyer Bell.
Authors O'Mara and O'Reilly, both Dubliners, were united by a love of literature and good food in compiling this appealing work, which takes 12 Irish masters and present passges from their works where the imagery of food is thematic. Each chapter is accompanied by recipes -- nearly 80 in all -- based on the foods mentioned. The dishes involve readily available ingredients that are easily prepared.

It will come as a surprise to those who love to disparage the Irish that many of these dishes are quite good. There are, of course, the predictable scones and soda bread, but then there are also Oliver St. John Fogarty's picnic chicken and champagne salad of fruits, James Joyce's roast goose, stuffed porksteaks and apple duff (an apple pudding) and Kate O'Brien's lobster mayonnaise, trout with fennel sauce and duckling with walnut stuffing.

O'Neil, Cathy (2016). Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy
. New York, Crown.
A former Wall Street quant sounds an alarm on the mathematical models that pervade modern life -- and threaten to rip apart our social fabric. O'Neil's book offers a frightening look at how algorithms are increasingly regulating people. Her knowledge of the power and risks of mathematical models, coupled with a gift for analogy, makes her one of the most valuable observers of the continuing weaponization of big data. She does a masterly job explaining the pervasiveness and risks of the algorithms that regulate our lives.

O'Neill, Eugene (1972). The Emperor Jones. Anna Christie. The Hairy Ape
. New York, Vintage Books.
Winner of the Nobel prize for literature and four Pulitzer prizes, Eugene O'Neill is generally acknowledged as America's greatest playwright. This low-priced edition contains three of his most important works. The Emperor Jones is an expressionistic play much admired for its powerful psychological portrayal of brute power, fear, and madness. The Hairy Ape combines elements of class struggle and surreal tragedy. Anna Christie is a realistic drama with rich characterizations.

O'Neill, Eugene (1999). The Iceman Cometh
. New York, Vintage International.
Tragedy in four acts by Eugene O'Neill, written in 1939 and produced and published in 1946. Considered by many to be his finest work, the drama exposes the human need for illusion and hope as antidotes to the natural condition of despair. O'Neill mined the tragedies of his own life for this depiction of a ragged collection of alcoholics in a rundown New York tavern-hotel run by Harry Hope. The saloon regulars numb themselves with whiskey and make grandiose plans, but they do nothing. They await the arrival of big-spending Theodore Hickman ("Hickey"), who forces his cronies to pursue their much-discussed plans, hoping that real failure will make them face reality. Hickey finally confesses that he killed his long-suffering wife just hours before he arrived at Harry's, and he turns himself in to the police. The others slip back into an alcoholic haze, clinging to their dreams once more.

O'Neill, Eugene (2002). Long Day's Journey into Night
. New Haven, CT, Yale University Press.
This work is interesting enough for its history. Completed in 1940, Long Day's Journey Into Night is an autobiographical play Eugene O'Neill wrote that--because of the highly personal writing about his family--was not to be released until 25 years after his death, which occurred in 1953. But since O'Neill's immediate family had died in the early 1920s, his wife allowed publication of the play in 1956. Besides the history alone, the play is fascinating in its own right. It tells of the "Tyrones "--a fictional name for what is clearly the O'Neills. Theirs is not a happy tale: The youngest son (Edmond) is sent to a sanitarium to recover from tuberculosis; he despises his father for sending him; his mother is wrecked by narcotics; and his older brother by drink. In real-life these factors conspired to turn O'Neill into who he was--a tormented individual and a brilliant playwright.

O'Neill, Eugene and Travis Bogard (1988). Complete Plays 1913-1920: Volume One
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
Travis Bogard, editor. 1104 pages. The only American dramatist awarded the Nobel Prize for literature, Eugene O'Neill wrote with poetic expressiveness, emotional intensity, and immense dramatic power. This is the only complete and authoritative edition of all 50 plays. This volume, the first of three, contains 29 plays written between 1913, when O'Neill began his career, and 1920, the year in which he first achieved Broadway success. Includes Thirst, Fog, The Web, Abortion, Bound East for Cardiff, In the Zone, The Long Voyage Home, The Moon of the Caribbees, Beyond the Horizon, Anna Christie, The Emperor Jones, and many more. "Reveals O'Neill's genius as never before."

O'Neill, Eugene and Travis Bogard (1988). Complete Plays 1920-1931: Volume Two
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
Travis Bogard, editor. The only complete and authoritative edition of all 50 plays, presented in order of composition. O'Neill's plays are marked by their compassionate portrayal of men and women, haunted by guilt and death, who are driven, ensnared, and sustained by dreams of love and forgiveness. This volume, the second of three, contains 13 plays written between 1920 and 1931, years in which O'Neill achieved his greatest popularity while experimenting with a wide variety of subjects and styles. Includes Diff'rent, The First Man, Welded, All God's Chillun Got Wings, The Fountain, Marco Millions, Lazarus Laughed, The Hairy Ape, The Great God Brown, Dynamo, Strange Interlude, Desire Under the Elms, and Mourning Becomes Electra.

O'Neill, Eugene and Travis Bogard (1988). Complete Plays 1932-1943: Volume Three
. New York, N.Y., Literary Classics of the United States: Distributed to the trade in the U.S. and Canada by the Viking Press.
Travis Bogard, editor. The only complete and authoritative edition of all 50 plays, presented in order of composition. The third and final volume of the first complete collection O'Neill's dramatic writing contains eight plays, including the crowning achievements of his career. Includes Ah, Wilderness!, Days Without End, A Touch of the Poet, More Stately Mansions, The Iceman Cometh, The Long Day's Journey into Night, Hughie, and A Moon for the Misbegotten. "Displays O'Neill more thoroughly than any playhouse ever could."

O'Neill, Eugene, Travis Bogard, et al. (1988). Selected Letters of Eugene O'Neill
. New Haven, Yale University Press.
Perhaps the most surprising feature of this selection from O'Neill's voluminous correspondence, being published on the centenary of his birth, is that a writer with so intensely private an inner world should have poured so much exuberant imagination into his letters to relatives and friends. Divided into chronological sections, each preceded with a useful biographical essay, the letters span some 50 years. There is the voracious reader, budding playwright and ardent romantic; the mature artist in the full flood of his creativity; and finally the Nobel laureate beset by illness and family tragedy. We see O'Neill pouring out his feelings to his three wives (love turning to hatred in the case of the second), storming at his grown children, answering his critics, battling the tax collector, strivingnot always successfullyto keep his inner and outer lives in balance. The letters abound in observation, irony, vitality and insights into the mind and heart of America's premier playwright. They also provide a salutary corrective to the gloomy O'Neill of legend. Bogard is professor emeritus at UC Berkeley, Bryer is a professor at the University of Maryland. Photos.

O'Neill, William L. (1989). Echoes of Revolt: The Masses, 1911-1917
. Chicago, Elephant Paperbacks.
A glorious collection of fiction, art, poetry, and protest from The Masses, the best radical magazine ever.

O'Reilly, Tim (2017). WTF? What's the Future and Why It's Up to Us
. Chicago, Elephant Paperbacks.
Tim O’Reilly, one of the most prescient observers of emerging technology, dubbed 'the Oracle of Silicon Valley' by Inc. magazine and 'the trend spotter' by Wired, explores the burning question of how to master the technologies we create before they master us. How do we make choices today that will result in a world we want to live in? O’Reilly applies techniques his pioneering company has used to predict and make sense of past innovation waves to provide a framework for thinking about what he calls the 'WTF technologies' of the twenty-first century. Surveys the potential of emerging technologies, drawing on the insights of experts to explore how artificial intelligence, algorithms, and new approaches to organization will change business and life in the near future.

Oakes, James (2013). Freedom National: The Destruction of Slavery in the United States, 1861-1865
. New York, W. W. Norton & Co.
This remarkable book offers the best account ever written of the complex historical process known as emancipation. The story is dramatic and compelling, and no one interested in the American Civil War or the fate of slavery can afford to ignore it. –Eric Foner

Oakes examines the history of the antislavery movement, slave resistance, Lincoln’s political machinations, the Republican Party, the Civil War, and the revisionist history of the intent of the political players in the 1800s as seen through more modern perspectives. This is an absorbing look at the complex process of emancipation and the forces behind the incentives and threats – and the war – that eventually led to the end of slavery in the U.S. –Vanessa Bush

Oakes, James (2014). The Scorpion's Sting: Antislavery and the Coming of the Civil War
. New York, W. W. Norton & Company, Inc.
Esteemed historian Oakes' basic premise is this: abolitionists did not plan on a war to effect the end of slavery. They believed that a "cordon of freedom," a ring of slave-free states and territories surrounding slave-holding areas, would exert enough antislavery pressure to eventually bring about slavery's abolition. Why that concept did not work and why, once secession pulled the nation apart, and warfare erupted, what indeed worked was military emancipation are great and greatly complicated ideas that Oakes airs with clear thinking and precise prose. One particularly fascinating aspect of his presentation is his recapitulation of the prewar disagreement over a fundamental question that greatly impacted one’s view of slavery, “Did the natural right of property take precedence over the natural right to freedom? –Brad Hooper

Ockman, Joan, Edward Eigen, et al. (1993). Architecture Culture, 1943-1968: A Documentary Anthology
. New York, Columbia University Graduate School of Architecture, Planning Rizzoli.
Architecture Culture 1943-1968 is an anthology of seventy-four international documents with critical commentary. Both a sourcebook and a companion history of architecture, the volume traces the evolution of modern architecture from the midst of the Second World War to the student revolts of May '68. Many of the selections are from hard-to-find sources, and some are translated into English for the first time. Readers will discover a rich and illuminating array of material from a period crucial to understanding the present time.

Oesterheld, Héctor Germán and Francisco Solano López (2015). The Eternaut
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics Books.
This seminal Argentinian science fiction graphic novel was originally released as a serial from 1957–59. Juan Salvo, its inimitable protagonist, along with his friend Professor Favalli and the tenacious metalworker Franco, face what appears to be a nuclear accident, but quickly turns out to be something much bigger than they imagined. Cold War tensions, aliens of all sizes, space—and time travel—this one has it all.

The Eternaut is also thinly disguised political allegory: its writer, Héctor Germán Oesterheld (HGO), because he was involved in groups who protested the military dictatorship, was "disappeared" and presumed dead in 1977. Classical artist Francisco Solano López (who had to flee Argentina for Spain) illustrated the book in a gritty, realistic style. This collaboration between two of the biggest names in Latin American comics is still powerful: the story of Juan Salvo, fighting to save Argentina and the world, lives on in sequels, retellings, and adaptations.

Oesterheld, Héctor Germán and Alberto Breccia, Enrique Breccia, & Pablo Turnes, Erica Mena, tr. (1969/2022). Life of Che: An Impressionistic Biography
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics Books.
Published in 1969, this Argentine graphic biography about Ernesto "Che" Guevara was an instant bestseller. Banned by a military dictatorship, and almost lost, it has never been available in English – until now. The book begins in Bolivia in 1967, then flashes back through Che's life — his childhood, his radicalizing motorcycle trip with Alberto Granado, his taking up of arms in Guatemala, his meeting with Fidel Castro, and his subsequent military and political maneuvers, ending in a fade-out to his death.

Oesterheld, Héctor Germán and Alberto Breccia (2018). Mort Cinder [Alberto Breccia Library, Volume 1]
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics Books.
Alberto Breccia is recognized as one of the greatest international cartoonists in the history of comics and Mort Cinder is considered one of his finest achievements. Created in collaboration with the Argentine writer Héctor Germán Oesterheld, best known in the U.S. for his politically incendiary sci-fi masterpiece, the Eisner Award-winning 'The Eternaut,' Mort Cinder is a horror story with political overtones. This episodic serial, written and drawn between 1962–1964, is drawn by Breccia in moody chiaroscuro. The artist’s rubbery, expressionistic faces capture every glint in the eyes of the grave robbers, sailors, and slaves that populate these stories; while the slash of stripes of prisoners’ uniforms, the trapeziums of Babylon, and more create distinct and evocative milieus.

Okrent, Daniel (2010). Last Call: The Rise and Fall of Prohibition, 1920-1933
. New York, Scribner.
Daniel Okrent has proven to be one of our most interesting and eclectic writers of nonfiction over the past 25 years, producing books about the history of Rockefeller Center and New England, baseball, and his experience as the first public editor for the New York Times. Now he has taken on a more formidable subject: the origins, implementation, and failure of that great American delusion known as Prohibition. The result may not be as scintillating as the perfect gin gimlet, but it comes mighty close, an assiduously researched, well-written, and continually eye-opening work on what has actually been a neglected subject.There has been, of course, quite a lot of writing that has touched on the 14 years, 1919-1933, when the United States tried to legislate drinking out of existence, but the great bulk of it has been as background to one mobster tale or another. Okrent covers the gangland explosion that Prohibition triggered - and rightly deromanticizes it - but he has a wider agenda that addresses the entire effect enforced temperance had on our social, political, and legal conventions. Above all, Okrent explores the politics of Prohibition; how the 18th Amendment, banning the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating beverages, was pushed through after one of the most sustained and brilliant pressure-group campaigns in our history; how the fight over booze served as a surrogate for many of the deeper social and ethnic antagonisms dividing the country, and how it all collapsed, almost overnight, essentially nullified by the people.Okrent occasionally stumbles in this story, bogging down here and there in some of the backroom intricacies of the politics, and misconstruing an address by Warren Harding on race as one of the boldest speeches ever delivered by an American president (it was more nearly the opposite). But overall he provides a fascinating look at a fantastically complex battle that was fought out over decades - no easy feat. Among other delights, Okrent passes along any number of amusing tidbits about how Americans coped without alcohol, such as sending away for the Vino Sano Grape Brick, a block of dehydrated grape juice, complete with stems, skins, and pulp and instructions warning buyers not to add yeast or sugar, or leave it in a dark place, or let it sit too long, lest it become wine. He unearths many sadly forgotten characters from the war over drink - and readers will be surprised to learn how that fight cut across today's ideological lines. Progressives and suffragists made common cause with the Ku Klux Klan - which in turn supported a woman's right to vote - to pass Prohibition. Champions of the people, such as the liberal Democrat Al Smith, fought side-by-side with conservative plutocrats like Pierre du Pont for its repeal. In the end, as Okrent makes clear, Prohibition did make a dent in American drinking, at the cost of hundreds of deaths and thousands of injuries from bad bootleg alcohol; the making of organized crime in this country; and a corrosive soaking in hypocrisy. A valuable lesson, for anyone willing to hear it.

Oles, James. (2022). Diego Rivera's America
. Berkeley, CA, University of California Press.
This volume accompanies a major SFMOMA exhibition highlighting Diego Rivera’s work in Mexico and the United States from the early 1920s through the mid-1940s. During this time in his prolific career, Rivera created a new vision for the Americas, on both national and continental levels, informed by his time in both countries. Works featured include the greatest number of paintings and drawings from this period reunited since the artist’s lifetime, presented alongside fresco panels and mural sketches. This catalogue serves as a guide to two crucial decades in Rivera’s career, illuminating his most important themes, from traditional markets to modern industry, and devoting attention to iconic paintings as well as works that will be new even to scholars—revealing fresh insights into his artistic process.

Olivares, Javier; Santiago Garcia, illus. (2017). The Ladies-in-Waiting
. Seattle, WA, Fantagraphics.
In 1656, Diego Velázquez, leading figure in the Spanish Golden Age of painting, created one of the most enigmatic works in the history of art: Las Meninas (The Ladies-in-Waiting). This graphic novel, written and drawn by two of Spain’s most sophisticated comics creators, examines its legacy as one of the first paintings to explore the relationship among the viewer, reality, and unreality. It guest stars Cano, Salvador Dalí, Zurbarán, and many others. Olivares’s art moves from clear line to expressionistic; from pen nib to brush stokes; from one color palette to another, as The Ladies-in-Waiting uses fiction to explore the ties among artists and patrons, the past and the present, institutions and audiences, creators and creativity. Their combined efforts have garnered not only international comics prizes, but the equivalent of the National Book Award in Spain, where the book has been a commercial and critical sensation.

Ominsky, Dave, P. J. Harari, et al. (1994). Football Made Simple: A Spectator's Guide
. Los Angeles, Calif., First Base Sports, Inc.
This easy-to-read guide, filled with illustrations and action photographs, contains everything for the fan and non-fan alike to understand and enjoy the sport of football.

Ondaatje, Michael (1993). The English Patient: A Novel
. New York, Vintage Books.
Canadian poet/novelist Ondaatje (In the Skin of a Lion, 1987, etc.) assembles, mosaic-fashion, the lives of four occupants of an Italian villa near Florence at the end of WW II. The war-damaged villa, its grounds strewn with mines, has gone from to German stronghold to Allied hospital, its sole occupants now a young Canadian nurse, Hana, and her last patient, a born victim. They are joined by David Caravaggio, an Italian-Canadian friend of Hana's father but also a thief used by Western intelligence, and Kip (Kirpal Singh), an Indian sapper in the British Army. So: a dying man and two wrecks--for David has become a morphine addict after his recent capture and torture, while Hana, who coped with the loss of her soldier sweetheart and their child (aborted), has been undone by news of her father's death. Only Kip is functioning efficiently, defusing the mines. Ondaatje superimposes on this tableau the landscape of the pre-war North African desert, with its strange brotherhood of Western explorers, filtered through the consciousness of Hana's patient. Though he claims to have forgotten his identity during the fiery fall from his plane into the desert, it seems the putative Englishman is the Hungarian explorer (and sometime German spy) Almasy; but such puzzles count for less than his erudition (his beloved Herodotus is the novel's presiding spirit), his internationalism ("Erase nations!''), and his doomed but incandescent love affair with the bride of an English explorer--an affair ignited by the desert and Herodotus, and a dramatic contrast to the "formal celibacy'' of the love developing at the villa between Hana and Kip, which ends (crudely) when Kip learns of the Hiroshima bombing, discovers his racial identity, and quits the white man's war. A challenging, disorienting, periodically captivating journey without maps, best when least showy, as in the marvelous account of Kip's adoption by an eccentric English peer, his bomb-disposal instructor. - Kirkus Reviews

Ono, Yōko and John Lennon, introduction (2000). Grapefruit: A Book of Instruction and Drawings
. New York, Simon & Schuster.
Back in print for the first time in nearly thirty years, here is Yoko Ono's whimsical, delightful, subversive, startling book of instructions for art and for life.

Orlando, Joe, Al Feldstein & Ray Bradbury (2014). Judgment Day and Other Stories
. Seattle, Fantagraphics.
Longtime comics pro Joe Orlando drew this collection of subversive 1950s EC genre comics. Joe Orlando was a mainstay at EC, especially on science fiction, and this collects 23 of his best sf stories. All of them, most scripted by Al Feldstein, serve up classic O. Henry-style endings, such as "I, Robot," and "Fallen Idol." The title story is one of EC's most famous, with its blunt anti-racism message. When it was printed during the era of the Comics Code, publisher Bill Gaines and Feldstein had to fight to keep the story's final panel "reveal" (and thus its whole point) intact. It was a Pyrrhic victory, however, as "Judgment Day" became the last story in the last comic book EC published. This volume also features two of Orlando's outstanding adaptations of classic Ray Bradbury science fiction stories: "The Long Year" and "Outcast of the Stars." Also included are all of EC's "Adam Link" adaptations, a series which was later also adapted for The Outer Limits TV show and featured Leonard Nimoy.

Ortiz, Darwin (1984). Gambling Scams: How They Work, How to Detect Them, How to Protect Yourself
. New York, Dodd, Mead.
Recommended by gambling experts such as Mark Pilarski and Howard Schwartz, Ortiz' book is considered the definitive work on gambling cheats, the mechanics of how they're done, and how to protect oneself.

This book exposes the most prized secret techniques of professional card mechanics, dice hustlers, grifters, and con ment - the methods that are being used in Friday-night poker games and multimillion dollar casino scams. Encyclopedic in scope, the book examines the methods of professional and amateur card cheats; casino cheating from both sides of the table, cheating at craps, bar dice games, and backgammon; crooked carnival games; street corner scams like three-card monte; gambling con games like those portrayed in "The Sting;" and even the pitfalls posed by innocent-seeming bar bets.

Orwell, George (1990). Animal Farm
. San Diego, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich.
Anti-utopian satire by George Orwell, published in 1945. One of Orwell's finest works, it is a political fable based on the events of Russia's Bolshevik revolution and the betrayal of the cause by Joseph Stalin. The book concerns a group of barnyard animals who overthrow and chase off their exploitative human masters and set up an egalitarian society of their own. Eventually the animals' intelligent and power-loving leaders, the pigs, subvert the revolution and form a dictatorship even more oppressive and heartless than that of their former human masters.

Orwell, George (1992). 1984
. New York, Knopf.
Novel by George Orwell, published in 1949 as a warning about the menaces of totalitarianism. The novel is set in an imaginary future world that is dominated by three perpetually warring totalitarian police states. The book's hero, Winston Smith, is a minor party functionary in one of these states. His longing for truth and decency leads him to secretly rebel against the government. Smith has a love affair with a like-minded woman, but they are both arrested by the Thought Police. The ensuing imprisonment, torture, and reeducation of Smith are intended not merely to break him physically or make him submit but to root out his independent mental existence and his spiritual dignity. Orwell's warning of the dangers of totalitarianism made a deep impression on his contemporaries and upon subsequent readers, and the book's title and many of its coinages, such as NEWSPEAK, became bywords for modern political abuses.

Orwell, George (1993). A Collection of Essays
. San Diego, Harcourt Brace.
Orwell discusses such diverse subjects as his boyhood schooling, the Spanish Civil War, comic postcards, Henry Miller, British Imperialism, and the profession of writing. The works collected here range from the relatively unfamiliar to the more celebrated, featuring "Such, Such Were the Joys," "Shooting an Elephant," "Politics and the English Language," and "Why I Write."

Osborne, Harold (1988). The Oxford Companion to Twentieth-Century Art
. Oxford [Oxfordshire]; New York, Oxford University Press.
The Oxford Companion to Twentieth Century Art provides readers at every level with a wealth of material and information on the art of our time. No other reference book or guide to twentieth-century art covers so wide a range of subjects, or supplies so much detail, as this one-volume. This new Companion treats in far greater depth the artists, ideas, movements and trends of painting, sculpture, and the graphic arts of this century up to the mid 1970s.

While it contains mainly entries on individual artists, the contributors also include articles on movements and schools, styles and new technical terms, ranging from Dada and Surrealism to Body Art and Computer Art. It offers separate accounts of art in the United States, Britain, and in the major European countries, as well as articles by leading authorities on the art and artists of Africa, Australia, Canada, Latin America, Mexico, South Africa, and the USSR. The contributors concentrate particularly on the aims and aesthetic theories of individual artists and groups.

Includes 300 carefully-chosen illustrations--nearly half in color--and a selective bibliography.

Osman, Tarek (2010). Egypt on the Brink: From Nasser to Mubarak
. New Haven, Yale University Press.
Famous until the 1950s for its religious pluralism and extraordinary cultural heritage, Egypt is now seen as an increasingly repressive and divided land, home of the Muslim Brotherhood and an opaque regime headed by the aging President Mubarak. In this immensely readable and thoroughly researched book, Tarek Osman explores what has happened to the biggest Arab nation since President Nasser took control of the country in 1954. He examines Egypt's central role in the development of the two crucial movements of the period, Arab nationalism and radical Islam; the increasingly contentious relationship between Muslims and Christians; and perhaps most important of all, the rift between the cosmopolitan elite and the mass of the undereducated and underemployed population, more than half of whom are aged under thirty.

Osterholm, Michael T. and John Schwartz (2000). Living Terrors: What America Needs to Know to Survive the Coming Bio-Terrorist Catastrophe
. New York, Delacorte Press.
With the help of Washington Post science writer Schwartz, Osterholm (formerly chief state epidemiologist in Minnesota) sounds a frightening alarm in this compact book. "I do not believe it is a question of whether a lone terrorist or terrorist group will use infectious disease agents to kill unsuspecting citizens," he writes."I'm convinced it's really just a question of when and where." Combining urgent, fact-filled prose with a series of fictional scenarios, the book outlines the scope of the potential threat. Osterholm introduces the various types of people and organizations he thinks might be planning to unleash an epidemic on a major U.S. city; he covers the six diseases that pose the greatest threat (such as anthrax and smallpox); he explains how underprepared we are for such an attack; and he proposes a "seven-point plan for change" (including stockpiling antibiotics and vaccines). Its hard to know whether Osterholm's panic is justified, as he prudently declines to get into the sort of detail that could facilitate a terrorist attack. But although the threats he describes are bone-chilling, his pro-public health, seven-point plan is sensible and compelling.

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2009). Akira, Volume 1
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
In Neo-Tokyo, built on the former site of Tokyo after World War III, two teenagers are targeted by agencies after they develop paranormal abilities.

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2010). Akira, Volume 2
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
In the 21ast cnetury, Neo-Tokyo has risen from the ashes of a Tokyo obliterated by a monstrous psychokinetic power known only as Akira, a being who yet lives, secretly imprisoned in frozen stasis. Those who stand guard know that Akira's awakening is a terrifying inevitability. Tetsuo, an angry young man with immense and rapidly growing psychic abilities, may be their only hope to control Akira when he wakes. But Tetsuo is becoming increasingly unstable and harbors a growing obsession to confront Akira face to face. A clandestine group including his former best friend sets out to destroy Tetsuo before he can release Akira, or before Tetsuo himself becomes so powerful that no force on Earth can stop him.

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2010). Akira, Volume 3
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
Tetsuo, an unstable youth with immense paranormal abilities of his own, has done the unthinkable: he has released Akira and set into motion a chain of events that could once again destroy the city and drag the world to the brink of Armageddon. Resistance agents and an armanda of government forces race against the clock to find the child with godlike powers before his unstoppable destructive abilities are unleashed!

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2010). Akira, Volume 4
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
Suffering the fate that beset its namesake three decades earlier, twenty-first-century Neo-Tokyo lies in ruin. Set off by the bullet of a would-be assassin, the godlike telekinetic fury of the superhuman child Akira has once again demolished in seconds that which took decades and untold billions to build. Now cut off from the rest of the world, the Great Tokyo Empire rises, with Akira its king, the psychic juggernaut Tetsuo its mad prime minister, and a growing army of fanatic acolytes ready to go to any length to please their masters. Forces on the outside still search for a way to stop Akira, and the answer may lie in the hands of the mysterious Lady Miyako, a powerful member of Akira's paranormal brotherhood. But the solution to harnessing Akira may ultimately be more dangerous than Akira himself.

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2011). Akira, Volume 5
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
In the 21st century, the once-glittering Neo-Tokyo lies in ruins, leveled in minutes by the infinite power of the child psychic giant, Akira. Now a wasteland of rubble and anarchy, the Great Tokyo Empire rises, a ragtag group of zealots and crazies who worship and fear Akira and his mad prime minister, Tetsuo, an angry teen with immense powers of his own - and equally immense twisted ambitions. The planet at large is not taking the threat lying down, however, and the might of the world is ready to take on the Empire, but will technology's most advanced weaponry be enough to destroy Akira - and is Tetsuo an ever greater threat? The fifth chapter in a sweeping epic of over 2000 pages, Akira 5 is the penultimate act of a mind-blowing graphic-novel masterpiece of awe-inspiring imagination and gut-wrenching power, and the inspiration for the classic Akira animated film.

Otomo, Katsuhiro (2011). Akira, Volume 6
. New York, Kodansha Comics.
The mad psychic colossus Tetsuo, the world's military, and the remaining psychics of The Project face off - with the child psychic god, Akira, the wild card - in what my be not only decide the fate of mankind, but may determine the next step in the human evolution! This long-awaited volume - a staggering 440 pages - features the impossible-to-find final chapters of Akira, never before collected in the U.S., presented as they were intended to be seen in their original, stunning black and white! Featuring a revised translation and top-quality art reproduction, this is the final edition of one of comics' definitive works, a six-volume epic of over two thousand pages. Since his groundbreaking work on Akira, Mr. Otomo has completed a number of inspired manga classics, including the powerful post-apocalyptic Legend of Mother Sarah and the dark study of a child's dreams, Domu. Otomo's mastery of the manga artform was recognized with a top Japanese book award, the Grand Prix, awarded to him in honor of Domu in 1989. Dark Horse Comics published the first English- language versions of The Legend of Mother Sarah and Domu and it is publishing this true-to-its-original-form, black-and-white, six-volume re-issue of Akira.

Ousmane, Sembène (1984). God's Bits of Wood
. Carmel, Indiana, Pearson.
In 1947 the workers on the Dakar-Niger Railway came out on strike. Throughout this novel, written from the workers' perspective, the community social tensions emerge, and increase as the strike lengthens.

Overbye, Dennis (1999). Lonely Hearts of the Cosmos: The Story of the Scientific Quest for the Secret of the Universe
. Boston, Back Bay Books.
Modern cosmology--the science of superstrings, wormholes, and Grand Unifications Theories--has been popularized in such recent books as Stephen Hawking's semitechnical A Brief History of Time and David Darling's fanciful Deep Time. Overbye, the editor of Discover magazine, focuses on the people who contributed to contemporary theories of the universe. Through interviews and personal anecdotes, Overbye presents an insider's view of the lives, works, and personalities of such legendary figures as Hawking; John Wheeler, the "father of the black hole "; and Alan Guth, architect of the "inflationary universe" concept. This approach depicts science as a human process and, in a sense, brings cosmology with all of its rarefied concepts "down to earth." For more formal biographical and technical information on the work of a greater number of leading cosmologists, see Alan Lightman and Roberta Brawer's Origins: The Lives and Worlds of Modern Cosmologists. - Gregg Sapp, Montana State University Library

Ovid and Peter Green (1982). The Erotic Poems
. Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England; New York, N.Y., Penguin Books.
Ovid's poems deal with the spectrum of sexual desire, from deeply emotional declarations of devotion, to flippant arguments for promiscuity. Poems include elegies to Ovid's mistress, advice on courtship, suggestions on how to break off a relationship, and a discussion of the art of cosmetics.

Ovid and A. E. Watts (1980). The Metamorphoses of Ovid: An English Version
. San Francisco, North Point Press.
The Metamorphoses of Ovid is one of Western literature's classic works. A long poem in 15 books, it is a collection of mythological stories ranging from the creation of the world to the age of Augustus, the first Roman emperor.

Owens, Rochelle (1974). The Joe 82 Creation Poems
. Los Angeles, Black Sparrow Press.
In Rochelle Owens' work-in-progress, The Joe Chronicles, she creates primordial archetypes who are ironically innocent from knowledge of their own perversions. As one can see from reading I Am The Babe of Joseph Stalin's Daughter (her 1972 volume consisting of short poems in various personae), Owens views the primitive mind as directly opposing the highly political consciousness which informs much of her earlier work. Three volumes of The Joe Chronicles were published in the 1970s: The Joe 82 Creation Poems (1974), The Joe Chronicles, Part 2, and Shemuel (both 1979).

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KWSnet is IPv6 enabled, HTTPS deployed, and fully HTML5 compliant.

KWSnet may be contacted via email with any comments, suggestions or link submissions. However, KWSnet does not accomodate guest posts, advertising, nor offers of link exchanges, and it will ignore requests for same. It does welcome requests to add links of quality sites, but chooses which sites to add to its directory based on perceived merit, interest, distinction, usefulness, or educational value. Particularly welcomed are comments correcting broken links, suggesting improvements, and recommendations for worthy additions to the site.

KWSnet is designed and maintained, in its entirety, by Kirk W. Smith.  Comments

Kirk W. Smith

This webpage last updated on Wednesday, March 27, 2024 6:29 AM.
© 2001-2024 by Kirk W. Smith.
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