Tuesday, December 23, 2008

For April: Yellowcake by Ann Cummins

For April, we have chosen Yellowcake by Ann Cummins,
This absorbing novel of the American Southwest introduces us to two unforgettable families -- the Irish-Catholic Mahoneys and the Navajo Attcitys -- who despite their differences are joined through shared history and tragedy. Two decades ago, Ryland Mahoney and Woody Attcity had both worked processing the radioactive concentrate yellowcake in a New Mexican uranium mill. Now both men are facing terminal illness. Woody's daughter is convinced that the mine is to blame and is determined to help her father fight for compensation. But Ryland wants no part of dredging up their past -- or acknowledging his future -- choosing instead to focus on his own daughter's upcoming wedding.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Peace on Earth

... and goodwill to all. This picture of our backyard, offered especially for my Southern California Readers, was taken as the the snow came down yesterday (hence a snowflake or two reflecting on the lens) while it was still looking like the most peaceful place on earth and before the winds came and chased me indoors. Enjoy the holidays, wherever you may be!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Our December Author: Ismail Kadare

Not the most complete Wikipedia biography for Ismail Kadare (The Successor) but it's a start, with a bit more from the BBC here. His English translator weighs in on his translation of a (French) translation. For a taste of the controversy surrounding the author, try this essay. I suspect there may be more interviews available in French, but here's one from the Times Online.

Bonus New Yorker short story here.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Happy 60th

Today is the 60th anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. To kick our celebration off here's a special animated video for the occasion:

If you're feeling nostalgic, here's the old Amnesty International 'running man' animation.

Not in a cartoon mood? This ACLU vid gives a nice capsule history of the UDHR beginning with footage of Eleanor Rooseve lt and presents its present day relevance to the civil rights movement.

Of course, we recommend Rights Readers selection, A World Made New: Eleanor Roosevelt and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights by Mary Ann Glendon, for the full story. Facing History brings us a Glendon video too.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Action! Action! Action!

We've added a new sidebar feature: feeds from Amnesty International - USA of the latest actions and news releases. Never be at a loss for something you can do!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Travel with Rights Readers!

At long last, the maps of settings of our Rights Readers books have been completed. You can zoom in on Tiananmen Square (Mandate Of Heaven) or Old Anarkarli (The Reluctant Fundamentalist). Asia & Australia can be found here and Africa & the Middle East here. See the sidebar for links to the previous maps of North and South America and Europe.

Bonus peak at cafe life in Old Anarkali here and here! Bon Voyage!
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