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ARCHAEOLOGY FROM SPACE

HOW THE FUTURE SHAPES OUR PAST

Exciting and futuristic, this book elicits that anything-is-possible feeling—a must-read.

A renowned space archaeologist gives readers an insider’s look at her field, which is basically Indiana Jones meets cutting-edge satellite technology. It’s every bit as exciting as it sounds.

Discovering ancient civilizations by digging them up has always had grand romantic appeal. Parcak (Anthropology/Univ. of Alabama, Birmingham; Satellite Remote Sensing for Archaeology, 2009), the president and founder of GlobalXplorer and winner of the TED Prize, was among a generation of kids wooed by archaeology in movies like Raiders of the Lost Ark. But unlike most of us, she followed through on her passion, committing early to archaeology and pioneering the use of advanced technologies as a means to significantly improve the chances of the discovery of a lost site. Such excavations offer much more than just a cache of dusty loot; as she writes, “that dirt contains nothing less than the clues to who we are, how we got here, and how we might thrive in the future.” In this fascinating adventure memoir, the author describes how remote sensing technology powered by orbiting satellites has transformed archaeologists’ ability to locate and verify sites that might otherwise never have been discovered. As the lead in many big discoveries around the world, from Egypt to Newfoundland, Parcak has a lot of great stories to tell, and she tells them with clarity, enthusiasm, and humor. She also looks into the future, explaining that artificial intelligence and DNA analysis could further push the field into territory that only recently would have been considered sci-fi. And then there is crowdsourcing: The author is optimistic that regular people have the power to “find and protect the world’s hidden heritage” through the online mapping of millions of undiscovered sites. Us, space archaeologists? There is no doubt that she will have no shortage of volunteers.

Exciting and futuristic, this book elicits that anything-is-possible feeling—a must-read.

Pub Date: July 9, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-19828-0

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Henry Holt

Review Posted Online: May 6, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2019

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NIGHT

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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THE PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS

FROM MEAN STREETS TO WALL STREET

Well-told and admonitory.

Young-rags-to-mature-riches memoir by broker and motivational speaker Gardner.

Born and raised in the Milwaukee ghetto, the author pulled himself up from considerable disadvantage. He was fatherless, and his adored mother wasn’t always around; once, as a child, he spied her at a family funeral accompanied by a prison guard. When beautiful, evanescent Moms was there, Chris also had to deal with Freddie “I ain’t your goddamn daddy!” Triplett, one of the meanest stepfathers in recent literature. Chris did “the dozens” with the homies, boosted a bit and in the course of youthful adventure was raped. His heroes were Miles Davis, James Brown and Muhammad Ali. Meanwhile, at the behest of Moms, he developed a fondness for reading. He joined the Navy and became a medic (preparing badass Marines for proctology), and a proficient lab technician. Moving up in San Francisco, married and then divorced, he sold medical supplies. He was recruited as a trainee at Dean Witter just around the time he became a homeless single father. All his belongings in a shopping cart, Gardner sometimes slept with his young son at the office (apparently undiscovered by the night cleaning crew). The two also frequently bedded down in a public restroom. After Gardner’s talents were finally appreciated by the firm of Bear Stearns, his American Dream became real. He got the cool duds, hot car and fine ladies so coveted from afar back in the day. He even had a meeting with Nelson Mandela. Through it all, he remained a prideful parent. His own no-daddy blues are gone now.

Well-told and admonitory.

Pub Date: June 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-06-074486-3

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Amistad/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2006

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