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How Not To Be Wrong
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How Not To Be Wrong

Sub title: The Hidden Maths of Everyday Life

The Freakonomics of math – a math-world superstar unveils the hidden beauty and logic of the world and puts its power in our hands. The maths we learn in school can seem like an abstract set of rules, laid down by the ancients and not to be questioned. In fact, Jordan Ellenberg shows us, maths touches on everything we do, and a little mathematical knowledge reveals the hidden structures that lie beneath the world's messy and chaotic surface. In How Not to be Wrong, Ellenberg explores the mathematician's method of analyzing life, from the everyday to the cosmic, showing us which numbers to defend, which ones to ignore, and when to change the equation entirely. Along the way, he explains calculus in a single page, describes Gödel's theorem using only one-syllable words, and reveals how early you actually need to get to the airport.

Book Reviews

• ‘Brilliantly engaging … Ellenberg’s talent for finding real-life situations that enshrine mathematical principles would be the envy of any math teacher. He presents these in fluid succession, like courses in a fine restaurant, taking care to make each insight shine through, unencumbered by jargon or notation. Part of the sheer intellectual joy of the book is watching the author leap nimbly from topic to topic, comparing slime molds to the Bush-Gore Florida vote, criminology to Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony. The final effect is of one enormous mosaic unified by mathematics.’ – Manil Suri, The Washington Post • ‘A cheery manifesto for the utility of mathematical thinking. Ellenberg's prose is a delight - informal and robust, irreverent yet serious … Full of simple yet deep insights that encourage clear thinking about many areas of modern life … How Not to Be Wrong is an impressive work of popular mathematics. It's low on formulae and numbers, and big on ideas’ – Alex Bellos, The Guardian • ‘Underlying the playful stories that make this book so gloriously, surprisingly readable is a passionate argument for the core discipline of managing uncertainty in decision-making ... In short, we dismiss maths at our peril, and this book charmingly, persuasively puts us straight. If only they'd taught maths like this at school’ – James McConnachie, Sunday Times • ‘There are plenty of popular maths books around, but this one strikes a particularly fine balance between rigour and accessibility. There are complex ideas here, but Ellenberg has a gift for finding real-life examples … His easy style is lucid and witty. If only all maths lessons were like this’ – Orlando Bird, Financial Times • ‘The title of this wonderful book explains what it adds to the honorable genre of popular writing on mathematics. Like Lewis Carroll, George Gamow, and Martin Gardner before him, Jordan Ellenberg shows how mathematics can delight and stimulate the mind. But he also shows that mathematical thinking should be in the toolkit of every thoughtful person-of everyone who wants to avoid fallacies, superstitions, and other ways of being wrong’ – Steven Pinker, author of How the Mind Works
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World Order
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World Order

Sub title: Reflections on the Character of Nations and the Course of History

As Henry Kissinger observes in this magisterial book, there has never been a true world order. For most of history, civilizations have defined their own concepts of order, each one envisioning its distinct principles as universally relevant. Now, as international affairs take place on a global basis, these historic concepts of world order are meeting. Every region participates in questions of high policy in every other, often instantaneously - yet there is no consensus among the major actors about the rules and limits guiding this process, or its ultimate destination. The result is mounting tension. Blending historical insight with prognostication, World Order is a meditation from one of our era's most prominent diplomats on the 21st century's ultimate challenge: how to build a shared international order in a world of divergent historic perspectives, violent conflict, proliferating technology and ideological extremism.

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Letters for a Nation
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Letters for a Nation

Sub title: From Jawaharlal Nehru to His Chief Ministers, 1947-1963

In October 1947, two months after he became independent India’s first prime minister, Jawaharlal Nehru wrote the first of his fortnightly letters to the heads of the country’s provincial governments – a tradition that he kept until his last letter in December 1963, only a few months before his death. Carefully selected from among nearly 400 such letters, this collection covers a range of themes and subjects, including citizenship, war and peace, law and order, national planning and development, governance and corruption, and India’s place in the world. The letters also cover momentous world events and the many crises and conflicts the country faced during the first sixteen years after Independence. Visionary, wise and reflective, these letters are not just a testimony to Nehru’s statesmanship and his deep engagement with every aspect of India’s democratic journey, but are also of great contemporary relevance for the guidance they provide for our current problems and predicaments.

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The Spirit of Indian Painting
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The Spirit of Indian Painting

Sub title: Close Encounter with 101 Great Works, 1100-1900

Through close encounters with a hundred carefully handpicked works, spanning nearly a thousand years, and ranging from Jain manuscripts and Pahari and Mughal miniatures to Company School paintings, B.N. Goswamy unlocks the many treasures that lie within them. As he narrates the stories behind each work, and deciphers the visual vocabulary and language of the painters, he also brings to life the cultural, social and political milieu in which they were created. An illuminating introductory essay precedes the section on the 101 paintings Lavishly illustrated, and combining deep erudition with great story-telling, this is a book of enduring value that will delight the reader and teach him new ways of seeing and appreciating art.

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"Think Like a Freak  "
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"Think Like a Freak "

Sub title: How to Think Smarter about Almost Everything

The Freakonomics books have come to stand for challenging conventional wisdom; using data rather than emotion to answer questions. Now Levitt and Dubner have turned what they've learned into a readable and practical toolkit for thinking smarter, harder, and different - thinking, that is, like a Freak. Think Like a Freak offers rules like 'Put Your Moral Compass in Your Pocket,' 'The Upside of Quitting,' 'Just Because You're Great at Something Doesn't Mean You're Good at Everything,' and 'If You Have No Talent, Follow Levitt's Path to Success.'

Book Reviews

‘[Praise for Superfreakonomics] Levitt is a master at drawing counter-intuitive conclusions . . . great fun . . . Superfreakonomics travels further than its predecessor’ Sunday Times, Tom Standage ‘[Praise for Superfreakonomics] There's material here not just for one conversation, but for several’ Daily Mail ‘[Praise for Superfreakonomics] A humdinger of a book: page-turning, politically incorrect and ever-so-slightly intoxicating, like a large swig of tequila’ The Times ‘Levitt and Dubner's zeal for statistical anomalies is as undimmed as their eye for a good story . . . lie back and let Levitt and Dubner's bouncy prose style carry you along from one peculiarity to the next’ Sunday Telegraph
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Flash Boys
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Flash Boys

The story of Michael Lewis' new book is so hot that we can't talk about it yet . . .

All we can say is that it involves Wall Street and features a cast of misfits and oddballs doing things with stupefying amounts of money and data that will have you by turns shocked, outraged, laughing, tearing your hair out, cheering - but throughout sitting on the very edge of your seat.

The story is so big, so vitally important to us all, that only one person could tell it - Michael Lewis, the master of the Big Story.

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‘In the hands of Michael Lewis, anything is possible.’ Sunday Times ‘Lewis is the finest storyteller of our generation’ Malcolm Gladwell
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The Marwaris
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The Marwaris

Sub title: From Jagat Seth to the Birlas

In the nineteenth century, a tiny community from the deserts of Rajasthan spread out to every corner of India. The Marwaris controlled much of the country’s inland trade by the time of the First World War. They then turned their hand to industry and, by the 1970s, owned most of India’s private industrial assets. Today, Marwari businessmen account for a quarter of the Indian names on the Forbes billionaires list.
What makes Marwaris so successful? Is it their indomitable enterprise, or their incredible appetite for risk? In this new book, Thomas Timberg shows how the Marwaris rely on a centuries-old system for conserving and growing capital which has stood them in good stead, alongside a strong sense of business ethics which has earned them respect.
Family businesses in general and the Marwaris in particular might have a vital role to play in shaping India’s economic future. This book tells us why.

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Gandhi Before India
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Gandhi Before India

In 1893, when Mohandas Gandhi set sail for South Africa, he was a 23-year-old briefless lawyer who had failed to establish himself in India. The two decades that he spent in South Africa were to be the making of the Mahatma. In this remarkable biography, Ramachandra Guha argues that Gandhi’s ideas were fundamentally shaped before his return to India in 1915. It was during his years in England and South Africa that he came to understand the nature of imperialism and racism; and it was in South Africa that he forged the philosophy and techniques that would undermine and ultimately destroy the British Empire. 
 
Based on a wealth of new material, and archival research in four continents, Gandhi Before India presents a vivid portrait of Gandhi and the world he lived in, a world of sharp contrasts between the coastal culture of Gujarat, High Victorian London, and colonial South Africa. It explores in rich detail his experiments with dissident cults such as Tolstoyans and vegetarians; his friendships with radical Jews, heterodox Christians, and devout Muslims; his enmities and rivalries; and his failures as a husband and father. It tells the dramatic, profoundly moving story of how he inspired the devotion of thousands of followers as he mobilized a cross-class and inter-religious coalition, pledged to non-violence in their battle against a brutally racist regime.
 
This deeply researched and beautifully written book will radically alter our understanding and appreciation of India’s greatest man. 
 

Book Reviews

‘One of the world’s greatest minds’—Independent
‘Perhaps the best among India’s non-fiction writers’—New York Times
‘That rarest of species, a genuinely independent-minded Indian intellectual’—Times of India
‘Indian democracy’s pre-eminent chronicler’—Time
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The Mouse Merchant
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The Mouse Merchant

Sub title: Money in Ancient India

Even in ancient India, money is always a good thing and everyone wants it. The stories in The Mouse Merchant—selected from the Sanskrit universe, from the period of the late Rig Veda to the twelfth century—tell us how money was dealt with in everyday life in ancient and medieval Indian society. At the heart of these tales is the merchant. Sometimes gullible, sometimes greedy; ingenious at some moments, dim-witted at others; and hopelessly in love with courtesans but also loyal to their wives,
our merchant heroes show how innovation in business is sometimes more important than capital. The Mouse Merchant puts these stories into the context of Indian business history, giving not only rare insights into the romance of the ancient seafaring life but also great wisdom about money.

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David and Goliath
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David and Goliath

Sub title: Underdogs, Misfits and the Art of Battling Giants

David and Goliath is the dazzling and provocative new book from Malcolm Gladwell, no.1 bestselling author of The Tipping Point, Blink, Outliers and What the Dog Saw

Why do underdogs succeed so much more than we expect? How do the weak outsmart the strong? In David and Goliath Malcolm Gladwell takes us on a scintillating and surprising journey through the hidden dynamics that shape the balance of power between the small and the mighty.

From the conflicts in Northern Ireland through the tactics of civil rights leaders and the problem of privilege, Gladwell demonstrates how we misunderstand the true meaning of advantage and disadvantage. When does a traumatic childhood work in someone's favour? How can a disability leave someone better off? And do you really want your child to go to the best school he or she can get into?

David and Goliath draws on the stories of remarkable underdogs, history, science, psychology and on Malcolm Gladwell's unparalleled ability to make the connections others miss. It's a brilliant, illuminating book that overturns conventional thinking about power and advantage.

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