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A compact tour de force about sex, violence, and self-loathing from a ferociously talented new voice in fiction, perfect for fans of Sally Rooney, Rachel Cusk, Lydia Davis, and Jenny Offill. Composed almost exclusively of conversations between women--the stories they tell each other, and the stories they tell themselves, about shame and love, infidelity and self-sabotage--Topics of Conversation careens through twenty years in the life of an unnamed narrator hungry for experience and bent on upending her life. Touching upon desire, disgust, motherhood, loneliness, art, pain, feminism, anger, envy, and guilt; written in language that sizzles with intelligence and eroticism, this novel introduces an audacious and immensely gifted new novelist.
A compact tour de force about sex, violence, and self-loathing from a ferociously talented new voice in fiction, perfect for fans of Sally Rooney, Rachel Cusk, Lydia Davis, and Jenny Offill. Composed almost exclusively of conversations between women—the stories they tell each other, and the stories they tell themselves—Topics of Conversation careens through twenty years in the life of an unnamed narrator hungry for experience and bent on upending her life. In exchanges about shame and love, infidelity and self-sabotage, Popkey touches upon desire, disgust, motherhood, loneliness, art, pain, feminism, anger, envy, and guilt. Edgy, wry, and written in language that sizzles with intelligence and eroticism, this novel introduces an audacious and immensely gifted new novelist.
What is the shape of a life? Is it the things that happen to us? Or is it the stories we tell about the things that happen to us? From the coast of the Adriatic to the salt spray of Santa Barbara, the narrator of Topics of Conversation maps out her life through two decades of bad relationships, motherhood, crisis and consolation. The novel unfurls through a series of conversations - in private with friends, late at night at parties with acquaintances, with strangers in hotel rooms, in moments of revelation, shame, cynicism, envy and intimacy. Sizzling with enigmatic desire, Miranda Popkey's debut novel is a seductive exploration of life as a woman in the modern world, of the stories we tell ourselves and of the things we reveal only to strangers. 'A pleasingly unsentimental novel about attraction and repulsion and the fluid line between the two. Popkey writes about these emotional eddies with such thrilling detachment you'll wonder why you ever worried about love at all.' Jenny Offill, author of Dept. of Speculation
Are you always nervous and awkward when surrounded by people? Do you find it difficult interacting with strangers and making meaningful conversations? Do you allow your fear of rejection stop you from having fun at parties, making friends, and leaving a long-lasting good impression? If your answer is YES to all of these, then this book will help you change that. How to Talk to Anyone: 51 Easy Conversation Topics You Can Use to Talk To Anyone Effortlessly addresses the major roadblocks keeping you from building connections and relationships through communication, and provides the best strategies to help you unleash your full potential as an excellent conversationalist. Inside, you'll find: The main components of communication, and their importance in making conversationsThe basic guide to making good and proper conversationsThe art of choosing the best conversation topics and making small talks interesting and fulfillingThe aces to use to influence and lead conversations While other books seek for things you could learn outside, this book chooses to dig deep down into what is already inside you – fears, hidden talent, creativity, and that connection you feel with every human being – and using them to get your desired results in conversations. After reading this book, you will surely feel more confident in facing challenges that keep you tongue-tied and passive at parties, and more determined on being known for your wit, honesty, and charisma. So grab a copy now, and begin taking this journey towards a more confident, conversation-savvy, and interesting YOU!
"Human behavior investigator Vanessa Van Edwards studies the hidden forces that drive our behavior patterns ... she shares a wealth of valuable shortcuts, systems and behavior hacks for taking charge of ... interactions at work, at home, and in any social situation"--
Book How to Talk About Hot Topics on Campus Description/Summary:
How to Talk About Hot Topics on Campus fills a gap in the student services and teaching and learning literature by providing a resource that shows how to construct and carry out difficult conversations from various vantage points in the academy. It offers a theory-to-practice model of conversation for the entire college campus that will enable all constituencies to engage in productive and civil dialogue on the most difficult and controversial social, religious, political, and cultural topics.
Book Compelling Conversations Description/Summary:
This English as a Foreign Language (EFL) textbook includes thematic chapters to create quality conversations and uses conversation starters, interview questions, classic quotations, paraphrasing exercises, and traditional proverbs to create hours of English conversation and class discussions for native Vietnamese speakers.
Book The Word Escapes Me: Voices of Aphasia Description/Summary:
A loss for words...something we all have experienced. Imagine living each day trying to find the words, understand what is being said, having trouble reading and writing. Welcome to the world of aphasia. This book provides much needed insight into this devastating communication disorder through the eyes of clinicians, caregivers and persons with aphasia. Increase your knowledge of aphasia and learn strategies to increase public awareness of aphasia. Explore innovative approaches to aphasia rehabilitation and groups. Read personal and candid stories of frustration, courage, hope, love and acceptance. Words can escape a person but compassion, respect and humor will always remain.
Book A Conversation Analysis Approach to French L2 Learning Description/Summary:
This book offers a critical examination of second language (L2) learning outside institutional contexts, with a focus on the way second language learners introduce, close, and manage conversational topics in everyday settings. König adopts a Conversation Analysis for Second Language Acquisition (CA-SLA) approach in analyzing oral data from a longitudinal study of L2 learners of French, au pairs in Swiss families, over several years. With this approach the author presents insights into the ways in which L2 learners introduce and close conversational topics in ongoing conversations and how these strategies evolve over time, setting the stage for future research on this little documented process in second language acquisition. This volume contributes toward a greater understanding of L2 learning “in the wild,” making this key reading for students and researchers in second language acquisition, applied linguistics, and French language learning and teaching.
"After spending sufficient time inside a lighthouse, who wouldn't begin to hear a song in the sound of the machinery, a voice in the wind or the waves?" Far from home, in the confines of a dim New York apartment where the oppressive skyscrapers further isolate her, Jazmina Barrera takes the reader on a tour of her lighthouses--those structures whose message is "first and foremost, that human beings are here." Starting with Robert Louis Stevenson's grandfather, an engineer charged with illuminating the Scottish coastline, On Lighthouses takes readers on an artful tour of lighthouses from the Spanish to the Oregon coasts and those in the works of Virginia Woolf, Edgar Allan Poe, Ingmar Bergman, and many others. In trying to "collect" lighthouses by obsessively describing them, Barrera begins to question the nature of writing, collecting, and how, by staring so intently at one thing we are only trying to avoid others. Equal parts personal memoir and literary history, On Lighthouses takes the reader on a desperate flight from raging sea to cold stone--from a hopeless isolation to a meaningful one--concluding at last in a place of peace: the home of a selfless, guiding light.
Book Supportive Conversations on Facebook Timelines Description/Summary:
The emergence of social networking sites, like Facebook, and people’s engagement with one another through them is a relatively under-researched area for discourse analysis. The content of the book revolves around Discourse Topic Management which is under the theme of Discourse Analysis. It is written to extend the very limited literature in the area of Discourse Topic, especially for the discourse which takes place on social networking sites. This study discusses the characteristics of topical actions employed by English language teachers and their Facebook Friends in managing supportive conversations which take place on Timelines. In addition to employing new strategies, enabled by the particular features of the site, the teachers and their Friends also creatively adapt the strategies used in face-to-face conversations to manage their online conversations, thus contributing to the emergence of unique characteristics of discourse topic management in the context of social networking sites. The book brings together the existing frameworks of Discourse Topic Management, which are previously applied in the context of face-to-face conversations, and synthesizes the frameworks for a more comprehensive model into examining the conversations which take place on Facebook Timelines. The novelty of this book lies in its synthesized framework, the recontextualization of the framework for online conversations and the theoretical extension based on the data analysis presented in each chapter. Since people’s engagement with social networking sites is an emerging behaviour, this timely book provides insights into the phenomenon and also proposes a comprehensive analytical framework for other researchers interested in similar contexts.
Book Challenging Conversations Description/Summary:
When was the last time you had an honest, heartfelt, yet kind and productive conversation with someone about depression, mental illness, substance abuse, pornography, premarital sex, racism, divorce, abortion, LGBTQ issues, or church scandals? Our tendency is either to avoid talking about such volatile topics at all--even with other Christians--or to go on the attack, causing rifts that do nothing to encourage further discussion or growth. If you're tired of avoiding tough conversations, if you want to be a light in a dark world but you're not sure how, Challenging Conversations is the book you've been waiting for. With straightforward answers to some of the most challenging moral issues disrupting the church, this book will help you build your confidence using three simple steps to becoming a conversant Christian. Each chapter begins with a true story, clarifies misconceptions and misunderstandings about the subject, and equips you to build rapport, ask the right questions, find points of agreement, and take the next fruitful step in the relationship. Because even if we disagree on a moral issue, that shouldn't make us mortal enemies.
Book The Communication Book: 44 Ideas for Better Conversations Every Day Description/Summary:
Mikael Krogerus and Roman Tschäppeler have tested the 44 most important communication theories and distilled them in book form, alongside clear and entertaining illustrations. Want better conversations? Ask open-ended questions that have no right or wrong answers—make your partner feel brilliant. Want better meetings? Ban smartphones, use a timer, and make everyone stand up. Want better business deals? Focus on the thing, rather than the person; on similarities, rather than differences; and on good outcomes, rather than perfect ones. Whether you want to present ideas more clearly, improve your small talk, or master the art of introspection, The Communication Book delivers, fusing theoretical knowledge and practical advice in a small but mighty package. With sections on work, the self, relationships and language, this book is indispensable for anyone who wants to improve what they say, and how they say it.
"Masande Ntshanga is a wildly talented writer. Get in on his brilliance now so you can claim you always knew he'd be great." —Victor LaValle, author of The Changeling Triangulum is an ambitious, often philosophical and genre-bending novel that covers a period of over 40 years in South Africa’s recent past and near future—starting from the collapse of the apartheid homeland system in the early 1990s, to the economic corrosion of the 2010s, and on to the looming, large-scale ecological disasters of the 2040s. In 2040, the South African National Space Agency receives a mysterious package containing a memoir and a set of digital recordings from an unnamed woman who claims the world will end in ten years. Assigned to the case, Dr. Naomi Buthelezi, a retired professor and science-fiction writer, is hired to investigate the veracity of the materials, and whether or not the woman's claim to have heard from a “force more powerful than humankind” is genuine. Thus begins TRIANGULUM, a found manuscript composed of the mysterious woman’s memoir and her recordings. Haunted by visions of a mysterious machine, the narrator is a seemingly adrift 17-year-old girl, whose sick father never recovered from the shock of losing his wife. She struggles to navigate school, sexual experimentation, and friendship across racial barriers in post-apartheid South Africa. When three girls go missing from their town, on her mother's birthday, the narrator is convinced that it has something to do with "the machine" and how her mother also went missing in the '90s. Along with her friends, Litha and Part, she discovers a puzzling book on UFOs at the library, the references and similarities in which lead the friends to believe that the text holds clues to the narrators’s mother's abduction. Drawing upon suggestions in the text, she and her friends set out on an epic journey that takes them from their small town to an underground lab, a criminal network, and finally, a mysterious, dense forest, in search of clues as to what happened to the narrator's mother. With extraordinary aplomb and breathtaking prose, Ntshanga has crafted an inventive and marvelous artistic accomplishment. "The violent and fascinating history of South Africa—from colonialism to apartheid, and the recent struggles to come to terms with this past—serves as a rich backdrop for this unsettling, enrapturing novel that brings to mind Roberto Bolano’s 2666... a novel of incredible imagination that gradually unfurls into a wonderfully realized meditation on growing up, heritage, and the effects of technological progress on the world around us." —Alexander Moran, Booklist
"In this powerful short fiction, Mary Gaitskill--whose searing honesty about gender relations has been legendary since the appearance of Bad Behavior in the 1980s--considers our moment through the lens of a particular #metoo incident. The effervescent and well-dressed Quin, a successful book editor and fixture on the New York arts scene, has long been one of Margot's best friends. When several women in his field accuse him of inappropriate touching and remarks, Gaitskill builds the account of his undoing through Quin and Margot's alternating voices, allowing readers to experience Quin as a whole person--one whose behavior toward women could be hurtful and presumptuous on the one hand, and keenly supportive on the other. Margot, an older woman who alternately despairs of and sympathizes with the positions of the younger women involved in Quin's case, is the thrumming engine of this remarkable piece of truthtelling. As Gaitskill has said, fiction is the only way that she could approach this subject, which she sees as subtly colored in shades of gray, rather than the black and white of our current conversations. Her compliment to her characters--and to her readers--is that they are unvarnished and real; her belief in our ability to understand them, even when we don't always admire them, is a beacon of humanity from one of our greatest contemporary writers"--
Approaches the subject of conversation in a sophisticated, thought-provoking manner, explaining what kind of talk charmed and excited people in the past, why conversation is different today and what it could be like in the future.
Ben Marcus returns with a collection of timely dystopian visions of alienation in a modern world. Here a hapless, corporate drone finds love after being disfigured from testing his employer’s newest nutrition supplement; a father starts to suspect that his son’s precocity has turned sinister; and two architects in a failing marriage must consider the ethics of artificially inciting emotion as they construct a memorial to a terrorist attack. It’s these characters and others that over the course of thirteen short stories showcase Marcus’s compassion, imagination, and mordant humor. Never has existential catastrophe been so much fun.
Book Night at the Fiestas: Stories Description/Summary:
Winner of the 2015 National Book Critics Circle John Leonard Prize "[A] sparkling debut collection…features dreamers and schemers whose lives pulsate with wild hopes, hard luck, stunning secrets, and saving grace." —Elle With intensity and emotional precision, Kirstin Valdez Quade's unforgettable stories plunge us into the fierce, troubled hearts of characters defined by the desire to escape the past or else to plumb its depths. The deadbeat father of a pregnant teenager tries to transform his life by playing the role of Jesus in a bloody penitential Passion. A young man discovers that his estranged father and a boa constrictor have been squatting in his grandmother’s empty house. A lonely retiree new to Santa Fe becomes obsessed with her housekeeper. One girl attempts to uncover the mystery of her cousin's violent past, while another young woman finds herself at an impasse when she is asked to hear her priest's confession. Always hopeful, these stories chart the passions and obligations of family life, exploring themes of race, class, and coming-of-age, as Quade's characters protect, betray, wound, undermine, bolster, define, and, ultimately, save each other.