The “It’s not too late to get a cool present,” edition of holiday round-ups

Christmas is well underway in many parts of the world, but it isn’t too late to find the perfect gift for the ancient history buff or naturalist on your list. You can “gift” apps through the app store, and we have a couple of recommendations.

Barrington-atlas-app-icon
Download at iTunes App Store
The Barrington Atlas App takes all the wonderful maps from the coveted print version of The Barrington Atlas (list price $425.00) and puts them into a digital, searchable, zoomable, bookmarkable, fits-in-the-palm-of-your-handable format for just $19.99. If you have a colleague, friend, or family member who relishes their National Geographic and Smithsonian magazine collections and plans vacations around the latest exhibit at the British Museum — this app will not disappoint. Don’t just take our word for it. The New York Times Book Review’s Applied Reading columnist, Jude Biersdorfer, wrote of the app: “Available in book form since 2000, this impressive tome has been converted into an engrossing iPad app. Spanning 16 centuries, it includes the text from the print edition and all 102 maps, now as high-resolution images that fill the screen. . . . Getting lost here is educational.”If the recipient possesses more of a natural history bent, we have two recommendations:
Warbler-app-iconDownload at iTunes App Store First, The Warbler Guide App launched this week and it will wow with 3D visuals, comparison song files, and expert information from Tom Stephenson and Scott Whittle, co-authors of the award-winning “bible” of warblers, The Warbler Guide. Maybe you know someone who already owns the book and you’re not sure if the app will be useful? This video explains why the app will be a sure-fire hit with any fan of the book. Don’t just take our word for it: Dan Tallman writes, “This amazing app is available at the iTunes Store for $12.99 for iPhones and iPads , and it is worth every penny….Some people say, ‘There is nothing new on this Earth,’ but they have never seen The Warbler Guide App. This app is a fast, intuitive way to identify the warblers of the United States and Canada by visuals and/or song. You can quickly access images of all species with comparisons to similar warblers.”
Mammals-of-North-America-APP icon
Download at iTunes App Store
Download at iTunes App Store
If you’re looking for something with fewer feathers, we recommend the Mammals of North America app (iTunes | Android). This app is based on our best-selling guide of the same name from Roland W. Kays & Don E. Wilson. The app featured everything from bears and mice to beavers and racoons. Users will admire the stellar illustrations and enjoy listening to animal sounds. This is your chance to find out what the fox really does say, and the skunk, and the badger. Well you get the point. 

“On the twelfth day…” The Twelve Grimm Days of Christmas

We are delighted to share these stories from The Complete First Edition of The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm with our readers. This series will run for 12 days and each story is accompanied by original art from Andrea Dezsö.

twelve brothers

The Twelve Brothers

Once upon a time there was a king who had twelve children, all boys. Moreover, he didn’t want to have a daughter and said to his wife: “If you give birth to our thirteenth child, and it’s a girl, I shall have the twelve boys killed. However, if it’s a boy, then they’ll all remain alive and stay together.” The queen thought of talking him out of this, but the king refused to hear anything more about this topic.

“If everything turns out like I said, they must die. I’d rather chop off their heads myself than let a girl be among them.”

The queen was sad about this because she loved her sons with all her heart and didn’t know how she could save them. Finally, she went to the youngest, who was her favorite, and revealed to him what the king had decided.

“Dearest child,” she said, “go into the forest with your eleven brothers. Stay there, and don’t come home. One of you should keep watch on a tree and look over here toward the tower. If I give birth to a little son, I’ll raise a white flag on top of the tower. However, if it’s a little daughter, I’ll raise a red flag. If you all see that it’s red, then save yourselves. Flee into the wide world, and may our dear Lord protect you. I’ll get up every night and pray that you won’t freeze in the winter and are able to warm yourselves by a fire and that when it’s hot in the summer, you can rest in a cool forest and sleep.”

After she gave her blessing to her sons, they went out into the forest, where they frequently looked toward the tower. One of them had to sit on top of a high tree and constantly keep watch. Soon a flag was hoisted, but it wasn’t a white one. It was a blood-red flag that foreshadowed their doom. As soon as the brothers caught sight of it, they all became angry and cried out: “Why should we lose our lives because of a girl?”

Then they all swore to remain in the middle of the forest and to keep on their guard, and if a maiden were to appear, they would kill her without mercy.

Soon after this they searched for a cave where the forest was the darkest, and that’s where they began to live. Every morning eleven of the brothers went off to hunt. One of them had to remain home, cook, and keep house. Whenever they encountered a maiden, she was treated without mercy and lost her life. This is how they lived for many years.

In the meantime their little sister grew up and was the only child left at home. One day there was a large amount of washing to do, and among the clothes there were twelve shirts for boys.

“Whose shirts are these?” the princess asked the washerwoman. “They’re much too small for my father.”

It was then that the washerwoman told her that she had once had twelve brothers, but they had mysteriously gone away. Nobody knew where because the king had wanted to have them killed, and the twelve shirts belonged to the twelve brothers. The little sister was astonished that she had never heard of her twelve brothers, and during the afternoon as the clothes were drying and she was sitting in the meadow, she recalled the words of the washerwoman. After giving considerable thought to what she had heard, she stood up, took the twelve shirts, and went into the forest where her brothers were living.

The little sister made her way straight to the cave that served as her brothers’ dwelling. Eleven of them were out hunting, and only one of them who had to cook was at home. When he caught sight of the maiden, he composed himself and drew his sword.

“Kneel down! Your red blood will flow this very second!”

But the maiden pleaded: “Dear sir, let me live. I’ll stay with you and serve you honestly. I’ll cook and keep house.”

She spoke these words to the youngest brother, and he took pity on her because of her beauty and spared her life. Later, when his eleven brothers returned home and were astonished to find a maiden alive in their cave, he said to them: “Dear brothers, this girl came to our cave, and when I wanted to cut her to pieces, she pleaded for her life so much and said that she would serve us faithfully and keep house that I spared her life.”

The others thought that this would be a great benefit to them because now all twelve of them could go hunting, and they were satisfied with this arrangement. Then the maiden showed them the twelve shirts and told them that she was their sister. Indeed, they were all very happy about this and were glad that they hadn’t killed her.

Now the little sister took over all the household chores, and when the brothers went out hunting, she gathered wood and herbs, kept the fire going, made up the beds nice and white and clean, and did everything with zeal and without getting tired.

One day, when she was finished with all the work, she took a walk in the woods and came to a place where there were twelve large beautiful white lilies. Since they pleased her so much, she plucked all twelve of them. No sooner did she do this than an old woman stood before her.

“Oh, my daughter,” she said, “why didn’t you let the twelve budding flowers just stand there? They’re your twelve brothers. Now they’ve been changed into ravens and are lost forever.”

The little sister began to weep and said, “Isn’t there any way that I can save them?”

“No, there isn’t any way in the world except one that’s so difficult you won’t be able to rescue them. You must spend the next twelve years with- out speaking. If you say one single word, even if there’s only an hour left, everything will be in vain, and your brothers will die that very moment.”

Well, the little sister responded by climbing a tall tree in the forest, where she took a place. She wanted to sit there twelve years without say- ing a word to free her brothers. But it so happened that a king was out riding and hunting in the forest, and as he rode by the tree, his dog stood still and barked. So the king stopped, looked up, and was very amazed by the princess’s beauty. He called to her and asked her whether she wanted to become his wife. However, she remained silent and only nodded a bit with her head. So the king himself dismounted, helped her down from the tree, and lifted her up before him onto his horse. Then he brought her home to his castle. Meanwhile the princess did not utter one word, and the king thought that she was mute. They would have lived happily with one another if it hadn’t been for the king’s mother, who began to slander the young queen in front of her son.

“She’s a common beggar that you’ve dug up from nowhere, and she’s doing the most disgraceful things behind your back!”

Since the young queen couldn’t defend herself, the king was led astray and finally believed what his mother said. So, he sentenced his wife to death, and a enormous fire was built in the courtyard, where she was to be burned to death.

Soon the queen was standing in the flames that grazed the fringes of her dress. One minute was left before the twelve years of her silence would be completed. There was a noise in the air, and twelve ravens swooped down into the courtyard. As soon as they touched the ground, they became twelve handsome princes who instantly put out the fire’s flames and led their sister to safety. Then she spoke once again and told the king how everything had happened and how she had to save her twelve brothers. Indeed, they were all pleased that everything turned out so well.

Now they had to decide what they should do with the evil mother-in- law. Well, they stuck her into a barrel full of boiling oil and poisonous snakes, and she died a ghastly death.


bookjacket

The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm:
The Complete First Edition
Jacob & Wilhelm Grimm, Translated and edited by Jack Zipes
Illustrated by Andrea Dezsö
Art credit: Andrea Dezsö

The Ultimate Warbler Guide App Sweepstakes — Win the app + the book + binoculars

[Update -- all winners have been notified as of January 15, 2015. Thank you for entering our giveaway!]

We are celebrating the launch of The Warbler Guide App with this ultimate prize package for anyone who likes birds, or more specifically, loves warblers!

Our prize package includes a download of The Warbler Guide App, a copy of The Warbler Guide, a pair of Zeiss TERRA ED binoculars, and the audio companion for The Warbler Guide. The total value of this prize is $400.00.

How to win? There are numerous ways to win, including visiting The Warbler Guide’s Facebook page, emailing us at blog@press.princeton.edu, following @PrincetonNature. or @TheWarblerGuide on Twitter. Just follow the steps in the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected on January 9, 2015.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

How to Do Things with Books in Victorian Britain winner of the 2014 Robert Lowry Patten Award

Congratulations are in order for Leah Price. Her recent book, How to Do Things with Books in Victorian Britain, won the 2014 Robert Lowry Patten Award from SEL Studies in English Literature 1500-1900!

“The Robert Lowry Patten Award, established in 2012, is given in alternate years to either the best recent study in nineteenth-century British literary studies or the best recent study in British literary studies of the Restoration and Eighteenth Century. The Patten award was created to honor the distinguished scholarly career of Bob Patten, who for more than forty years was a professor of English at Rice University, and who for nearly thirty of those years was either editor or publisher and executive editor of SEL Studies in English Literature 1500-1900.”

bookjacket

How to Do Things with Books in Victorian Britain
Leah Price 

 

 

“On the ninth day…” The Twelve Grimm Days of Christmas

We are delighted to share these stories from The Complete First Edition of The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm with our readers. This series will run for 12 days and each story is accompanied by original art from Andrea Dezsö.

godfather sparrow

Loyal Godfather Sparrow

Once upon a time there was a deer about to give birth, and she asked the fox to be the godfather. However, the fox invited the sparrow to be godfather as well, and the sparrow also wanted to invite his special good friend the house dog to be godfather. However, the dog’s master had tied him up with a rope because the dog had returned home very drunk from a wedding. The sparrow thought that this was not a problem and pecked and pecked at the rope one thread after the other as long as it took for the dog to be released. Now they went together to the godfathers’ banquet and enjoyed themselves very much, because there was plenty to eat and drink there. The dog , however, didn’t pay attention and drank too much wine again. When they stood up, his head was so heavy that he could barely stand on his four legs. Nevertheless, he staggered part of the way toward home. Finally, however, he fell over and remained lying in the middle of the road. Just then a carter came and wanted to drive over him with his cart.

“Carter, don’t do that,” the sparrow cried out, “or you’ll pay for it with your life!”

However, the carter didn’t listen to him. Instead, he whipped the horses and drove the horses right over the dog so that the wheels broke the dog’s bones. The fox and the sparrow dragged the godfather home, and when dog’s master saw him, he said: “He’s dead,” and gave him to the carter to bury.

Now, the carter thought that the dog’s skin was still useful. So he loaded the dog onto his cart and drove away. However, the sparrow flew nearby and yelled out: “Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life! Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

The carter was angry at the little bird because he thought he was being taken for a fool. So he grabbed his axe and tried to hit the sparrow, who flew higher into the air. Instead of hitting the sparrow, the carter hit his horse’s head so that the horse fell down dead. The carter had to leave it lying there and drive on with the other two horses. Then the sparrow returned and sat down on the head of another horse.

“Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

The carter ran toward the bird and yelled: “I’ve got you!” but as he tried to hit the sparrow, he struck his horse on the head so that it fell over dead. Now there was only one horse left. The sparrow didn’t wait long and sat down on the head of the third horse and cried out: “Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

But the carter was now so furious that he didn’t think about what he was doing and just swung his axe randomly. Now all his three horses had been beaten to death, and he had to leave the cart standing there. Angry and vitriolic he went home and sat down behind the oven. But the sparrow had flown after him, sat down in front of the window, and cried out: “Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

The carter grabbed his axe and smashed the window, but he didn’t hit the sparrow. Now the bird hopped inside the house, sat down on top of the oven, and cried out: “Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

Crazy and blind with rage he chopped the entire oven to pieces, and as the sparrow flew from one place to another, the carter smashed all the household utensils, mirrors, chairs, benches, table, and the walls of the house. Finally, he grabbed hold of the sparrow and said: “Now I’ve got you!” He stuck the bird into his mouth and swallowed it whole. However, when the sparrow was in the carter’s body, it began to flap its wings, and it fluttered up to the carter’s mouth, stuck its head outside, and cried out: “Carter, you’ll pay for this with your life!”

Well now the carter gave the axe to his wife and commanded; “Wife, strike the bird in my mouth and kill it!”

But the wife missed her mark, and instead she struck her husband in the head so that he immediately fell down the ground dead, while the sparrow flew out and away.


bookjacket

The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm:
The Complete First Edition
Jacob & Wilhelm Grimm, Translated and edited by Jack Zipes
Illustrated by Andrea Dezsö

Art credit: Andrea Dezsö

Stumped for a last minute gift idea? Try these books

Buying gift or coffee-table books online can be nerve-wracking when all you have to go on is the cover and maybe, if you’re lucky, a couple of sample pages. What will the book really look like? Will it be gift-y enough? We want to take the uncertainty out of the process for you with these videos that show off three of our sumptuous recommended gift books. These books are all available now to complete your last minute holiday shopping.

Enjoy!

Penguins: The Ultimate Guide: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10335.html

The Bee: A Natural History: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10336.html

Atlas of Cities: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/10307.html

 

For additional holiday gift recommendations, please click here.

Princeton University Press’s extended best-seller list for the holidays

What are people picking up for the holidays? Our best-seller list provides lots of clues — biography, literature, history, and birds!

Alan Turing: The Enigma, The Book That Inspired the Film The Imitation Game by Andrew Hodges
The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm edited by Jack Zipes
1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric H. Cline
Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W. Bernard Carlson
Lost Animals: Extinction and the Photographic Record by Errol Fuller
The Age of the Vikings Anders Winroth
The Future of the Brain: Essays by the World’s Leading Neuroscientists edited by Gary Marcus & Jeremy Freeman
On Bullshit by Harry Frankfurt
The Mystery of the Invisible Hand: A Henry Spearman Mystery by Marshall Jevons
Mastering ’Metrics: The Path from Cause to Effect by Joshua D. Angrist & Jörn-Steffen Pischke
The New York Nobody Knows: Walking 6,000 Miles in the City by William B. Helmreich
The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World by Adrienne Mayor
QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter Richard P. Feynman
Penguins: The Ultimate Guide by Tui De Roy, Mark Jones & Julie Cornthwaite
The Warbler Guide by Tom Stephenson and Scott Whittle

Wizards, Aliens, and Starships and Einstein and the Quantum named Top 10 Physics Books of 2014 by Physics Today magazine

Charles L. Adler’s Wizards, Aliens, and Starships: Physics and Math in Fantasy and Science Fiction and A. Douglas Stone’s Einstein and the Quantum: The Quest of the Valiant Swabian were each named to Physics World‘s 2014 “Top 10 Books of the Year” list. The ten books on the list “are all well written, novel and scientifically interesting for a physics audience.”

On their blog, Physics World writes of Wizards, Aliens, and Starships,

“Books about the science of science fiction aren’t uncommon, but it’s rare to see the subject treated with as much flair and rigour as it is here. Throughout this book, author Charles Adler uses ‘Fermi problems’ – challenging exercises in reasoning and back-of-the-envelope calculation – to evaluate the plausibility of various concepts from SF and fantasy. It’s an approach that should endear his book to physicist readers, and it’s particularly pleasing to see the world of fantasy (not just “hard” science fiction) get some scientific scrutiny.”

Further praise was given to Einstein and the Quantum:

“Sparkling writing and crystal-clear physics make this account of Einstein’s quantum work stand out on the overcrowded shelf of books devoted to the world’s most famous physicist. Unlike many other Einstein authors, A. Douglas Stone is neither a cosmologist nor a historian. Instead, he’s a solid-state physicist, and the parts of Einstein’s work that most intrigue him concern thermodynamics and the behaviour of quantum ideal gases, rather than well-known gedankenexperiments about beams of light on trains. Reading about this other side of Einstein is a real (and unexpected) pleasure.”

According to Physics World, “2014 has been a fantastic year for science books, and for physics books in particular,” and the same can be said for all our PUP titles!

bookjacket

Wizards, Aliens, and Starships:
Physics and Math in Fantasy and Science Fiction
Charles L. Adler 

 

bookjacket

Einstein and the Quantum:
The Quest of the Valiant Swabian
A. Douglas Stone

The Warbler Guide App Blog Tour, Day 4

Digital formats allow authors and developers to present images in new and exciting ways. For The Warbler Guide App, Tom Stephenson and Scott Whittle took it all the way by commissioning exclusive 3D illustrations that allow users to literally spin and flip a warbler to any angle. Better yet, you can spin and flip two warblers side by side for quick comparisons. So, when you spot a bird from a strange angle, you can quickly replicate that view in the app and compare it with similar species.

For today’s tour stop, the American Birding Association presents an exclusive video of the visual elements of The Warbler Guide App including a preview of this 3D capability.

Capture

Please support our blog tour participants by visiting their sites:

Day 3:

warblerwatch

Day 2:

drunk

 

prairie

Day 1:

Capture

New Earth Science Catalog!

Be among the first to browse and download our new earth science catalog!

Of particular interest is Paul Folkowski’s Life’s Engines: How Microbes Made Earth Habitable. For almost four billion years, microbes had the primordial oceans all to themselves. The stewards of Earth, these organisms transformed the chemistry of our planet to make it habitable for plants, animals, and us. Life’s Engines takes readers deep into the microscopic world to explore how these marvelous creatures made life on Earth possible—and how human life today would cease to exist without them.

Also be sure to note Beth Shapiro’s How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction. Could extinct species, like mammoths and passenger pigeons, be brought back to life? The science says yes. In How to Clone a Mammoth, Shapiro, evolutionary biologist and pioneer in “ancient DNA” research, walks readers through the astonishing and controversial process of de-extinction.

And don’t miss out on Donald Canfield’s Oxygen: A Four Billion Year History. The air we breathe is twenty-one percent oxygen, an amount higher than on any other known world. While we may take our air for granted, Earth was not always an oxygenated planet. How did it become this way? Oxygen is the most current account of the history of atmospheric oxygen on Earth. Donald Canfield—one of the world’s leading authorities on geochemistry, earth history, and the early oceans—covers this vast history, emphasizing its relationship to the evolution of life and the evolving chemistry of the Earth.

More of our leading titles in earth science can be found in the catalog. You may also sign up with ease to be notified of forthcoming titles at http://press.princeton.edu/subscribe/. (Your e-mail address will remain confidential!)

If you’re heading to the annual American Geophysical Union meeting in San Francisco, CA December 15th-19th, come visit us at booth 1712, and follow #AGU14 and @PrincetonUPress on Twitter for updates and information on our new and forthcoming titles. See you there!

Princeton University Press’s best-selling books for the last week

These are the best-selling books for the past week.

Alan Turing: The Enigma, The Book That Inspired the Film The Imitation Game by Andrew Hodges
The Original Folk and Fairy Tales of the Brothers Grimm edited by Jack Zipes
1177 BC: The Year Civilization Collapsed by Eric H. Cline
Tesla: Inventor of the Electrical Age by W. Bernard Carlson
Lost Animals: Extinction and the Photographic Record by Errol Fuller
The Age of the Vikings Anders Winroth
The Future of the Brain: Essays by the World’s Leading Neuroscientists edited by Gary Marcus & Jeremy Freeman
On Bullshit by Harry Frankfurt
The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World by Adrienne Mayor
The Warbler Guide by Tom Stephenson and Scott Whittle

1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed wins 2014 Award for the Best Popular Book, American Schools of Oriental Research

clineEric H. Cline, author of 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed, is the first ever recipient of the American Schools of Oriental Research’s (ASOR) new award, the Best Popular Book Award (which will be officially named next year). “This award is presented to the author/editor of a book published in the last two years that offers a new synthesis of archaeological data intended to reach an audience of scholars as well as students and the broader public.”

Excerpts from the certificate presented to Cline at the annual ASOR meeting in San Diego praised his ability to inform and interest various types of readers:

“Eric Cline…masterfully brings together a wealth of information while maintaining a popular appeal throughout his study.”

“Cline’s extensive bibliography of source material makes this book extremely valuable for scholars, yet he explains the complexities of his subject in language easily understandable by the general public. This book possesses the rare quality of engaging both the academic and general readership.

Congratulations to Cline on winning the prestigious award and for setting the bar high for future nominations of the Best Popular Book. Below is a picture of Cline’s award alongside copies of 1177 B.C.

Cline_ASORprize-cert