Archive for December, 2019

Danger Close: The Battle at Long Tan

December 21, 2019

One late afternoon in 1966, in a Vietnamese rubber plantation, 108 young and mostly inexperienced Australian and New Zealand soldiers held off a force of 2500. This is their untold story.

I’ll Scream Later – Marlee Matlin

December 21, 2019

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Critically acclaimed and award-winning actress Marlee Matlin reveals the illuminating, moving, and often surprising story of how she defied all expectations to become one of the most prolific and beloved actresses of our time.

Marlee Matlin entered our lives as the deaf pupil turned custodian audiences fell in love with in Children of a Lesser God, a role for which she became the youngest woman ever to win a Best Actress Oscar. More than twenty years after her stunning big screen debut, the Golden Globe- and Emmy-nominated actress is an inspirational force of nature — a mother, an activist, and a role model for millions of deaf and hard-of-hearing people around the world.

In I’ll Scream Later, Marlee takes readers on the frank and touching journey of her life, from the frightening loss of her hearing at eighteen months old to the highs and lows of Hollywood, her battles with addiction, and the unexpected challenges of being thrust into the spotlight as an emissary for the deaf community. She speaks candidly for the first time about the troubles of her youth, the passionate and tumultuous two-year relationship with Oscar winner William Hurt that dovetailed with a stint in rehab, and her subsequent romances with heartthrobs like Rob Lowe, Richard Dean Anderson, and David E. Kelley.

Though she became famous at the age of twenty-one, Marlee struggled all her life to connect with people, fighting against anyone who tried to hold her back. Her own mother often hid behind their communication barrier, and Marlee turned to drugs before she even started high school. However, she found in acting — with the encouragement of her mentor, Henry Winkler — a discipline, a drive, and a talent for understanding the human condition that belied her age and her inability to hear. By the time Hollywood embraced her, she had almost no formal training, a fact that caused many other deaf actors to give her the cold shoulder, even as she was looked upon as a spokesperson for their community.

She has played memorable roles on wildly popular television shows such as SeinfeldThe West Wing, and The L Word, danced a show-stopping cha-cha-cha on Dancing with the Stars, and now, with uncompromising honesty and humor, Marlee shares the story of her life — an enduring tale that is an unforgettable lesson in following your dreams.

Ellen Burstyn – Lessons in Becoming Myself

December 21, 2019

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By the time Ellen Burstyn arrived in New York to study acting, she’d already worked as a Texas fashion model, a Montreal chorus girl, suffered numerous toxic relationships, and just as many name changes and spiritual paths. Theater legend Moss Hart called her “a natural” but Ellen Burstyn was still trying discover who she was. This is the graceful story of a personal and professional quest, a life-long journey-by turns triumphant and terrifying, tragic and funny, thoughtful and illuminating.

 

 

Waiting for Snow in Havana – Carlos Eire

December 14, 2019

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“Have mercy on me, Lord, I am Cuban.” In 1962, Carlos Eire was one of 14,000 children airlifted out of Havana—exiled from his family, his country, and his own childhood by Fidel Castro’s revolution. Winner of the National Book Award, this stunning memoir is a vibrant and evocative look at Latin America from a child’s unforgettable experience.

Waiting for Snow in Havana is both an exorcism and an ode to a paradise lost. For the Cuba of Carlos’s youth—with its lizards and turquoise seas and sun-drenched siestas—becomes an island of condemnation once a cigar-smoking guerrilla named Fidel Castro ousts President Batista on January 1, 1959. Suddenly the music in the streets sounds like gunfire. Christmas is made illegal, political dissent leads to imprisonment, and too many of Carlos’s friends are leaving Cuba for a place as far away and unthinkable as the United States. Carlos will end up there, too, and fulfill his mother’s dreams by becoming a modern American man—even if his soul remains in the country he left behind.

Narrated with the urgency of a confession, Waiting for Snow in Havana is a eulogy for a native land and a loving testament to the collective spirit of Cubans everywhere.

 

A Walk in the Woods – Bill Byson

December 14, 2019

 

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Based upon a true story that was made into a movie starring Robert Redford and Nick Nolte about hiking along the 2,100 mile Appalachian Trail.

Back in America after twenty years in Britain, Bill Bryson decided to reacquaint himself with his native country by walking the 2,100-mile Appalachian Trail, which stretches from Georgia to Maine. The AT offers an astonishing landscape of silent forests and sparkling lakes and to a writer with the comic genius of Bill Bryson, it also provides endless opportunities to witness the majestic silliness of his fellow human beings.
For a start there’s the gloriously out-of-shape Stephen Katz, a buddy from Iowa along for the walk. Despite Katz’s overwhelming desire to find cozy restaurants, he and Bryson eventually settle into their stride, and while on the trail they meet a bizarre assortment of hilarious characters. But “A Walk in the Woods” is more than just a laugh-out-loud hike. Bryson’s acute eye is a wise witness to this beautiful but fragile trail, and as he tells its fascinating history, he makes a moving plea for the conservation of America’s last great wilderness. An adventure, a comedy, and a celebration, “A Walk in the Woods” has become a modern classic of travel literature.”

 

https://www.amazon.com/Woods-Official-Guides-Appalachian-Trail/dp/1613839022

The Fall of the House of Borgia – E. R. Chamberlain

December 14, 2019

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This biography deals with the inter marriages of the Royal Families and the skullduggery of popes and the vatican of that era.


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