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Enchanting New Zealand by Author: Light, Liz

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The 50 Best Birdwatching Sites In New Zealand by Author: Light, Liz

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Michelle Obama by Author: Lightfoot, Elizabeth

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One in a Billion: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey through Modern-Day China by Author: <p>Combining lucid, concise descriptions of China&#39;s history with intimate details of peasant commune life culled from a decade&#39;s worth of interviews with An Wei, Pine presents an eye-opening portrait of how ordinary Chinese people can become driving forces for reform. Readers seeking to go beyond the headlines about China will learn much from this account.--Publishers Weekly<br /> A vivid and gripping account of the hardships overcome by a poor boy in rural China on the path to becoming a major force in the promotion of education and English language learning. An Wei seized the opportunity to get an education and used it aggressively to get that opportunity for the most underserved of China&#39;s children. It is the story of China in turbulent times; from farm subsistence living to the city, from nothing to becoming the link to expanding knowledge among villages in Central China. A true story of courage, determination, and the drive of an individual on a never-ending quest for the betterment of community. A story of altruism that depicts overcoming obstacles and the harshness of life. One in a Billion is a personal story with a universal theme. A story of triumph against overwhelming odds told through one man&#39;s journey.--Peter H. Antoniou, California State University San Marcos<br /> An Wei&#39;s personal history is interwoven with China&#39;s history as it grew from dynasty to chaos to unified country. Nancy Pine&#39;s book makes the &#39;image&#39; of China more than a superficial Communist behemoth--it gives an insider&#39;s perspective to the experiences of people who lived there throughout these transitions and who live there now.--Elizabeth Tatum, social justice activist<br /> From the very beginning of Nancy Pine&#39;s book One in a Billion, I was drawn to the personal childhood stories of An Wei and the parallel historical events behind them. Especially for me, an immigrant from China who went through similar vicissitudes during those early decades of modern China&#39;s development, An Wei&#39;s experiences resonate with me and bring back many memories. Dr. Pine gives his rural and primitive daily life a distinctive regional flavor, her descriptions of local peasants and indigenous agriculture in An Shang village are vivid and true to character. In addition, Dr. Pine introduces many historical events such as the Great Leap Forward and foot-binding. This is a great story of one man&#39;s long journey from a Chinese village to becoming a bridge between China and America. I found the book not only entertaining, but also informative.--Joan Huang, freelance composer<br /> Generalizations about China and its struggle for meaningful reform can be corrected with this work about the life of one man. An Wei has witnessed the most traumatic and important events of twentieth-century China and has become a visionary fighter for grassroots democracy at the village level. Nancy Pine&#39;s excellent book enables us to delve into the inner world of this modest yet effective survivor-reformer. After four decades of writing and teaching about China, I would recommend Pine&#39;s scrupulous research and vivid focus on An Wei to anyone interested in understanding the jagged landscape of change in China today.--Vera Schwarcz, Wesleyan University; author of Colors of Veracity: A Quest for Truth in China, and Beyond<br /> It is rare when an individual&#39;s life so perfectly parallels a revolutionary era in a vast nation&#39;s history. It is even rarer when that individual tells his story in fascinating detail to an American. That American is China scholar, Nancy Pine. The individual is An Wei, born in 1942, synchronized to catch the wave of Mao&#39;s Cultural Revolution, Great Leap Forward and the oppression and corruption that followed. Chinese history is revealed in the details of a boy&#39;s life; a boy who caught and killed sparrows to protect his family&#39;s crops; who gathered fake money so he could use the paper three times over to practice his writing; a young man who grew up to challenge government corruption with the skill of a tight-rope walker. Ms. Pine&#39;s writing is clear, concise and swift moving; never upstaging a remarkable man&#39;s story. In One in a Billion the complex history of a complex country unrolls with the ease of a deeply textured Chinese scroll. To read this book is to absorb Chinese history through one person&#39;s unforgettable life story.--Val Zavala, KCET award-winning journalist<br /> Through the life of an ordinary man in China, Pine tells an extraordinary saga of struggle, perseverance, fortitude, and joy. Her subject matter, Mr. An Wei, has not held high positions nor is he wealthy, but his work has affected many lives in China and the United States. He continues to bring the two peoples closer to each other despite their many political and ideological differences. His story will inspire others to stand up and persist in doing what&#39;s right.--Peter Chan, Brigham Young University<br /> An invaluable read for anyone seeking a deeper understanding of modern China and the benefits and burdens endured by its people. Nancy Pine masterfully reveals the personal aspirations of one man who struggled to establish grassroots democracy in the countryside, stood up for truth within the provincial bureaucracy, and built substantial bridges for US-China relations. His is a compelling life story about the crucial issues facing China today.--Sharon Crain, Shaanxi Teachers University<br /> An Wei&#39;s story of courage and dedication deserves to be better known in both China and the United States.--Robert Farnsworth, author of From Vagabond to Journalist: Edgar Snow in Asia, 1928-1941<br /> China matters. But how can American readers possibly grasp the complexities of that world power whose fate and ours are inextricably bound? The best way may be to read Nancy Pine&#39;s superb biography of one extraordinary man whose odyssey through modern China is the closest we can come to a complete explanation of what makes China tick.--Eric Maisel, author of Coaching the Artist Within<br /> It is oh-so-true that most Americans know China solely through quick commercial tours and media propaganda. Nancy Pine&#39;s biography of a single man and his fascinating career gives a glimpse of what has and can happen to make a difference in so many lives one person at a time. After many years of being associated with An Wei and his colleagues and mentees through work, I can attest to his commitment and his enduring legacy. Nancy Pine portrays my friend as a man who has successfully spanned a gap and made the world better for those around him and those of us on the other side of the global bridge. Enjoy the read!--Mary Warpeha, US-China Peoples Friendship Association of Minnesota<br /> Like Edgar Snow in Red Star Over China in the 1930s, Nancy Pine has discovered a largely unknown Chinese figure in a remote village who encapsulates much of the extraordinary story of modern China. Snow found Mao Zedong. Now Pine gives us An Wei, a bright, ambitious child born to a peasant family in the same region. He and his family suffer through the traditional plagues of old China, drought and locusts among them. Then they must endure the new hardships inflicted by Mao, the grandiose building of communes, starvation during the Great Leap Forward, and the cruelties of the Cultural Revolution. In a modern twist, An Wei finds his own way forward by learning English and becoming a translator for visiting American dignitaries, among them, Snow&#39;s widow.--Fox Butterfield, Pulitzer Prize winner and author of China: Alive in the Bitter Sea<br /> More than just another account of an individual involved in US-China relations, this fascinating account tells the story of a man who is an exemplar of global citizenship and whose actions have shown the younger generation on both sides of the globe how to interact in selfless ways that benefit others.--Kelly Long, Colorado State University<br /> Nancy Pine tells a delightfully readable and inspiring story about China through the life of An Wei. Readers will be fascinated by how he overcame setbacks, pursued education, and persevered through tumultuous governmental changes to become an interpreter for presidents and creator of democracy in his village. I look forward to encouraging all my contacts to read this book.--Greta Nagel, Museum of Teaching and Learning<br /> The friendship between An Wei and Helen Foster Snow must be one of the great friendships of the twentieth century. Symposiums, schools, scholarships, exhibits, and exchanges between China and the United States--all organized by An Wei over a period of nearly forty years, carry the US-China connection of friendship to the coming generations. How did a man with such entrepreneurial ability emerge out of the Cultural Revolution? Nancy Pine&#39;s book is the remarkable answer.--Sheril Foster Bischoff, Helen Foster Snow Literary Trust<br /> This one book could change your opinion about what you think of China, its government, and its people.--Debra Foster, niece of Helen Snow</p>

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The Writing and Ratification of the U.S. Constitution by Author: <p>Works on the 1787 Constitutional Convention are thick on the ground and include scholarly treatments....Vile&#39;s monograph raises the question, why another account? Vile (Middle Tennessee State Univ.) hopes to provide an account that will not only enlighten contemporary audiences as to what happened and why, but just as importantly, ask readers to pay attention to the way most delegates approached the task of addressing fundamental political issues. That way involved meeting arguments with argument, a willingness to compromise, and a belief that &quot;unattainable perfection was the enemy of an attainable good&quot;--thus the subtitle, Practical Virtue in Action. Given the intransigence of contemporary politicians, a more timely justification would be hard to find. A clearly written, well-organized distillation of Vile&#39;s extensive research on the US Constitution. Summing Up: Recommended. General readers and undergraduate students. * CHOICE *<br /> The Framing of our Constitution is a story that every American ought to know by heart and John Vile&#39;s The Writing and Ratification of the U.S. Constitution tells that wonderful story very well. His emphasis on the &#39;practical virtue&#39; of the Framers is a welcome one at a time in our own political history when principle is regarded as the antithesis of compromise. -- Brannon P. Denning, Cumberland School of Law, Samford University<br /> What the United States Constitution means is a matter of legal and increasingly contentious political dispute. Often invoked in these debates are what the framers of the document intended. The Writing and Ratification of the U.S. Constitution: Practical Virtue in Action offers an excellent summary of the context for the drafting of the Constitution as well as critical examination of the drafting of the document at the Philadelphia Convention. Written by one of the leading contemporary constitutional scholars, John R. Vile demonstrates how the Framers combined scholarship and experience to produce America&#39;s Constitution. For students, faculty, and others who want to grasp what the Constitution meant to the framers, this book is an excellent first stop and essential read. -- David Schultz, Hamline University and Journal of Public Affairs Education<br /> Sober, measured, scholarly, carefully chosen language - there are the hallmarks of Professor Vile&#39;s publications on the framing of the United States Constitution. Vile&#39;s newest contribution, Writing and Ratification of the U.S. Constitution, draws from the primary documents from this period, but the author is equally at home with the wisdom of academia (political science, history, and law) and with judicial decisions expounding on the Constitution. This book is a good fit for any library reference collection and for any student starting a module or course of study in American civilization or government. Highly recommended. -- Seth Barrett Tillman, Lecturer of Law, National University of Ireland Maynooth<br /> Writing and Ratification of the United States Constitution: Practical Virtue in Action by John R. Vile is a wise and practical book of scholarship. A pleasure to read, the book provides a concise compendium of the issues and the personalities of those at the center of the central enterprise of the American experiment in self-government. Lawyers will recognize Vile&#39;s work as an accessible and well-crafted &#39;legislative history&#39; of the very foundational law of the republic, which in 1787 could scarcely be imagined. Students of history and politics will find the vivid details of intense controversies that confronted the states, its leaders and their citizens alike under the makeshift arrangement of the Articles of Confederation. What readers will not find in this important book is one grand theory or a dominant philosophy manifest in the deliberations that yielded the core Constitution. Rather, the careful tracing of the proceedings in Philadelphia beautifully confirms that there was compromise and statesmanship at every turn. The principal consideration by the delegates as a whole was to yield a more perfect union than the one they had. They could not know for certain that they had achieved that goal, but they dared to try. John Vile&#39;s book provides an understated but eloquent vindication of the pragmatism the Founders brought to their work and challenges our current generation of leaders to find such common ground once more. -- Kenneth L. Penegar, author, The Political Trial of Benjamin Franklin</p>

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