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Bergdorf Goodman Hosts the Launch of Betty Halbreich’s New Memoir

September 15, 2014
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Photo Credit: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images

Photo Credit: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images

All eyes were on Betty Halbreich at the release party of her memoir I’ll Drink to That: A Life in Style, With a Twist, hosted September 4 at Bergdorf Goodman in New York City. 

On the heels of fashion week, this event celebrated not only Ms. Halbreich’s memoir, but also her influence in the industry, where she has spent nearly forty years as the legendary personal shopper at Bergdorf Goodman. She is trusted by the most discriminating persons—including Hollywood’s top stylists—to tell them what looks best.

Photo Credit: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images

Photo Credit: Eugene Gologursky/Getty Images

According to The Wall Street Journal, Halbreich said, “‘I don’t like the crowds and the people-watching. Dear God, I’ll be glad to get this over with. I have 300 people coming tonight whose names I’m not going to remember.’ This star-studded event included big names such as designers Zac Posen, Isaac Mizrahi, Duro Olowu, and Bergdorf Goodman’s Linda Fargo, and Lena Dunham, who is developing a HBO series loosely-based off Ms. Halbreich’s life.

I’ll Drink to That chronicles Ms. Halbreich’s personal transformation from a cosseted young girl to a fearless truth teller, proving that ambition is the key to success. She now humbly hopes her memoir will inspire others. “I really wanted people to know that you can pull yourself up from the bottom of the well,” she said.

Cheers to Betty!

Photo Credit: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

Photo Credit: Joe Schildhorn/BFAnyc.com

I’ll Drink to That: A Life in Style, With a Twist is available for purchase from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and your local indie bookstore.

The Art of Slow Writing: Reflections on Time, Craft, and Creativity by Louise DeSalvo

September 15, 2014
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The Art of Slow Writing

In a series of conversational observations and meditations on the writing process, The Art of Slow Writing examines the benefits of writing slowly. DeSalvo advises her readers to explore their creative process on deeper levels by getting to know themselves and their stories more fully over a longer period of time. She writes in the same supportive manner that encourages her students, using the slow writing process to help them explore the complexities of craft. The Art of Slow Writing is the antidote to self-help books that preach the idea of fast-writing, finishing a novel a year, and quick revisions. DeSalvo makes a case that more mature writing often develops over a longer period of time and offers tips and techniques to train the creative process in this new experience.

DeSalvo describes the work habits of successful writers (among them, Nobel Prize laureates) so that readers can use the information provided to develop their identity as writers and transform their writing lives. It includes anecdotes from classic American and international writers such as John Steinbeck, Henry Miller, Virginia Woolf and D. H. Lawrence as well as contemporary authors such as Michael Chabon, Junot Diaz, Jeffrey Eugenides, Ian McEwan, and Salman Rushdie. DeSalvo skillfully and gently guides writers to not only start their work, but immerse themselves fully in the process and create texts they will treasure.

“Leavened by her own elegant and energetic prose, The Art of Slow Writing distills the wisdom of long experience. Whether in the classroom or on the page, DeSalvo is that rare teacher who is both exacting and inspiring.” – Kathryn Harrison, New York Times bestselling author of Enchantments, The Kiss, and The Binding Chair

“DeSalvo turns what might have been an exercise in navel-gazing into a lively and inspiring guide for writers of all stripes. Buy two copies – the first will quickly sprout dog-ears. – Publishers Weekly (starred review)

The Art of Slow Writing: Reflections on Time, Craft, and Creativity is available at Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and your local indie bookstore.

Virtually Human: The Promise –And The Peril– of Digital Immortality by Martine Rothblatt

September 9, 2014
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jpegVirtually Human explores what the not-too-distant future will look like when cyberconsciousness—simulation of the human brain via software and computer technology—becomes part of our daily lives.  Meet Bina48, the world’s most sentient robot, commissioned by Martine Rothblatt and created by Hanson Robotics. Bina48 is a nascent Mindclone of Martine’s wife that can engage in conversation, answer questions, and even have spontaneous thoughts that are derived from multimedia data in a Mindfile created by the real Bina. If you’re active on Twitter or Facebook, share photos through Instagram, or blogging regularly, you’re already on your way to creating a Mindfile—a digital database of your thoughts, memories, feelings, and opinions that is essentially a back-up copy of your mind. Soon, this Mindfile can be made conscious with special software—Mindware—that mimics the way human brains organize information, create emotions and achieve self-awareness. This may sound like science-fiction, but the nascent technology already exists. Thousands of software engineers across the globe are working to create cyberconsciousness based on human consciousness and the Obama administration recently announced plans to invest in a decade-long Brain Activity Map project. Virtually Human is the only book to examine the ethical issues relating to cyberconsciousness and Rothblatt, with a Ph.D. in medical ethics, is uniquely qualified to lead the dialogue.

 

“Ingenious… a thoughtful philosophical exploration of the role of virtual humans in our future” – Kirkus Reviews

“Exponential technologies are driving a new dimension of human evolution. In her compelling book, Virtually Human, Martine Rothblatt outlines how artificial consciousness is just around the corner, and explores the scientific and ethical ramifications. Science fiction is rapidly becoming science fact and the implications are breathtaking. Virtually Human is critical reading to anyone who plans to be around for the next couple of decades.”—Peter H. Diamandis, MD, CEO, XPRIZE; Exec Chairman, Singularity University; New York Times bestselling author of Abundance: The Future is Better Than You Think

“We are in the midst of a war between biological and electronic brains for dominance in our hybrid population. Bio-brains are, so far, ahead based on their inventiveness, energy-efficiency and exponential improvement rate. Will ethics asymmetrically restrict engineering humans or will it equally apply soon to ‘virtually human’ electronic brains? Martine’s insights on these and many other topics are timely and welcome.”—George Church, Harvard Professor, and author of Regenesis: How Synthetic Biology Will Reinvent Nature and Ourselves

Virtually Human is a fascinating read that clearly brings Alan Turing into the 21st century. I have argued that we are DNA-software driven machines and as we expand digital-biological interconversions, Martine’s “mind clones” and functional avatars are a logical outcome. Only by attempting to recreate models of humans will we truly begin to understand ourselves. Virtually Human is a great beginning.” —J. Craig Venter, Ph.D., author of Life At The Speed Of Light and creator of the first synthetic cell

Martine was also just featured on the cover of New York Magazine. The article on her remarkable career and life can be seen here: http://nymag.com/news/features/martine-rothblatt-transgender-ceo. Other articles on her can also be seen at:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/innovations/wp/2014/09/09/what-happens-when-your-grandparents-can-talk-to-your-grandchildren/

http://www.inc.com/martine-rothblatt/biotech-companies-make-empathetic-robots.html

 

Virtually Human is available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon and your local indie bookstore.

I’ll Drink to That: A Life In Style With A Twist by Betty Halbreich

September 4, 2014
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ill drink to thatEighty-six-year-old Betty Halbreich is a true original. A tough broad who could have stepped straight out of Stephen Sondheim’s repertoire, she has spent nearly forty years as the legendary personal shopper at Bergdorf Goodman, where she works with socialites, stars, and ordinary women off the street. She has helped many find their true selves through clothes, frank advice, and her own brand of wisdom. She is trusted by the most discriminating persons—including Hollywood’s top stylists—to tell them what looks best. But Halbreich’s personal transformation from a cosseted young girl to a fearless truth teller is the greatest makeover of her career.

 

“Sartorial style becomes a philosophy of life in this spirited memoir…Halbreich comes across as sage and gracious as she narrates a life full of incident, taking us inside the fashion industry and one of its great institutions.” Publishers Weekly

“Every woman has a piece of clothing that she can’t live without, because in it, she feels most like herself. Betty’s memoir has that effect on a reader. Authentic style is a form of self-knowledge. And in that respect, I’ll Drink To That is like Betty’s famous three-way mirror. She sizes up her own life fearlessly, and in the process, not only helps you to diagnose your own flaws, but to embrace your own beauty.” —Judith Thurman, author of National Book Award-winning Isak Dinesen: The Life of a Storyteller and Los Angeles Times Book Award-winning Secrets of the Flesh: A Life of Colette

“Betty was born to sail through people’s lives telling them what to wear (and even what to do). The other day I overheard her chatting with a client, ‘Oh, she’s been my friend for thirty-five years, and she’s only thirty.’ Lines like that are good enough for George Cukor. The whole scanrio is. Maybe she’s known that all these years. Fashion is not only about necessity but also a form of entertainment—and that is what Betty sells.” —Isaac Mizrahi, fashion designer

I’ll Drink to That is available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon and your local indie bookstore.

The Lenovo Way by Gina Qiao and Yolanda Conyers

August 8, 2014

51HsTEptFaL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_In The Lenovo Way, Senior Vice President Gina Qiao and Vice President Yolanda Conyers of Lenovo discuss the best ways of managing a diverse global company and reaching optimal performance. Since its groundbreaking acquisition of IBM’s PC business in 2005, Lenovo has been #1 in global PC sales, making this book a must-read for all future business innovators.

The Lenovo Way illustrates to business leaders how to gain market share and develop new, more efficient business models. Perhaps Lenovo’s most remarkable feature as a company is that it is has roots in both the East and the West; thus, this book is a terrific case study for the best global practices of managing a business. Moreover, it tells the story of how two women from very different backgrounds became leaders within the company, paralleling Lenovo’s rise to the top of the industry. The Lenovo Way divulges not only how to gain market shares or how to create a diverse corporate culture that transcends all borders, but perhaps more importantly, it illustrates how to lead your company successfully through the chaos of change.

“If you want to grow your business and turn global opportunity into reality, read The Lenovo Way. From the new generation of female leadership, this book shares important business lessons for a global world.” — Carol Evans, President, Working Mother Media

“Through groundbreaking and innovative leadership, Lenovo has proven that ‘soft’ values can lead to huge profits. The Lenovo Way shows how they did it–and how you can too.” — Marshall Goldsmith, author of the New York Times bestseller What Got You Here Won’t Get You There

“In The Lenovo Way, authors Gina Qiao and Yolanda Conyers have mapped a course to success for future global leaders.” — Deborah Gillis, President and CEO, Catalyst

 

The Lenovo Way is available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and your local indie bookstore.

 

Road Tripping by Loralee Leavitt and Rick Walton

August 7, 2014

IUnknownmagine driving down an empty road in the middle of nowhere, your spouse asleep in the passenger seat, kids fighting in the back, two more hours to the next hotel you hope has a vacancy, you’re struggling to keep your eyes open, and you can’t remember the last time you ate. Just thinking about this would make even the most resilient parents second-guess the idea of taking their children on a long road trip. Is it really worth the trouble?

The truth is, any family can take a long road trip. All it takes is preparation, time behind the wheel, and determination to keep your family’s spirits up, no matter the situation. In Road Tripping: A Parent’s Guide to Planning and Surviving the Annual Car Trip, authors Loralee Leavitt and Rick Walton take you step-by-step through what you need to know to survive any situation as a family on the road. Not only do they help you decide what to pack, but they also provide resources on where to go, what to do, and how to get the best discounts. They even give tips for single parents who want to spend some quality time with their children, but aren’t sure if they could do it alone.

So don’t let that open road scare you. Take time to prepare, pack up the kids, and start out on your next, fun-filled adventure.

Road Tripping is available from AmazonBarnes & Noble, and the University of Washington bookstore.

The Cat, The Vagabond And The Victim by Leann Sweeney

August 6, 2014

 

81nKsjjkzsLNational bestselling author of The Cat, The Mill And The Murder returns with another feline-friendly novel: The Cat, The Vagabond And The Victim centers around Clyde the cat. When Clyde travels two hundred miles back home only to find his former owner dead, the story makes national news. While everyone seems eager to tell Clyde’s incredible tale, someone needs to step up to care for him. Because the media attention is creating chaos at the local shelter, cat quilter Jillian Hart agrees to foster the loyal orange tabby, hoping his location is kept secret.

But while the media circus around Clyde continues, Jillian learns the real story behind his owner’s death—he was murdered. Why would an elderly man already dying from a serious illness become a murder victim? As the local police search for an answer, Clyde makes another escape. Jillian is drawn into the case when she finds Clyde has returned to his home again—and he’s found another body. When the motive behind these murders is finally revealed, Jillian understands Clyde is in danger of becoming the next victim, and she must help find the killer before the claws really come out.

“A charming novel that highlights the love of felines with a mystery that tugs at the heartstrings. For a mystery that features a custom cat quilter as the heroine, the novel nevertheless tackles very serious themes and contains a strong plot that engages the reader until its very satisfying conclusion.”—Kings River Life Magazine“Ms. Sweeney is a talented writer who has peopled this series with some extremely likable characters.…This series just gets better and better.”—Fresh Fiction“Leann Sweeney has written another well-plotted page-turner. I loved this book. I enjoy a good mystery that features my furry favorites as well as quirky characters.”—MyShelf.com“I cannot recommend this series enough to animal lovers and fans of a darn good mystery. The mystery was multilayered and kept me guessing right to the end, and, as always, I’m anxious for the next Cats in Trouble book!”—Cozy Mystery Book Review

The Cat, The Vagabond And The Victim is available from Barnes & Noble, Amazon, and your local indie bookstore.

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