Sex, serendipity, and a city whose fate rests with two high-functioning alcoholics… Whenever Rachel Bennett gets drunk, unbelievable things seem to happen. One night, the awkward exchange student manages to seduce the hottest guy in the room. The next day, she´s told she is capable of destroying half a continent… by her new plush toy, no less. As if she didn´t have enough to deal with. Discovering she´s one of a hundred randomly selected people around the world with special abilities, Rachel and her stuffed companion must quickly learn to harness them before a terrible danger threatens to obliterate Tokyo city. But can she keep on top of such a dangerous secret as well as everything else in her life? I mean, come on - she´s got a goddamn test on Friday. What readers are saying... ´´My family think I´m crazy because I´m laughing so much.´´ - Susan Stradiotto (Author of The Caeteran Tales series) ´´It´s one of those can´t-put-down kind of books. Gotta find out what happens next…´´ - My mum (The person who birthed me and is probably now wondering what she did to screw me up this bad)
NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY The Huffington Post ? Financial Times ? Success ? Inc. ? Library Journal ´´What does it mean to manage well?´´ From Ed Catmull, co-founder (with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter) of Pixar Animation Studios, comes an incisive book about creativity in business-sure to appeal to readers of Daniel Pink, Tom Peters, and Chip and Dan Heath. Forbes raves that Creativity, Inc. ´´just might be the business book ever written.´´ Creativity, Inc. is a book for managers who want to lead their employees to new heights, a manual for anyone who strives for originality, and the first-ever, all-access trip into the nerve center of Pixar Animation-into the meetings, postmortems, and ´´Braintrust´´ sessions where some of the most successful films in history are made. It is, at heart, a book about how to build a creative culture-but it is also, as Pixar co-founder and president Ed Catmull writes, ´´an expression of the ideas that I believe make the best in us possible.´´ For nearly twenty years, Pixar has dominated the world of animation, producing such beloved films as the Toy Story trilogy, Monsters, Inc., Finding Nemo, The Incredibles, Up, and WALL-E, which have gone on to set box-office records and garner thirty Academy Awards. The joyousness of the storytelling, the inventive plots, the emotional authenticity: In some ways, Pixar movies are an object lesson in what creativity really is. Here, in this book, Catmull reveals the ideals and techniques that have made Pixar so widely admired-and so profitable. As a young man, Ed Catmull had a dream: to make the first computer-animated movie. He nurtured that dream as a Ph.D. student at the University of Utah, where many computer science pioneers got their start, and then forged a partnership with George Lucas that led, indirectly, to his founding Pixar with Steve Jobs and John Lasseter in 1986. Nine years later, Toy Story was released, changing animation forever. The essential ingredient in that movie´s success-and in the thirteen movies that followed-was the unique environment that Catmull and his colleagues built at Pixar, based on philosophies that protect the creative process and defy convention, such as: ? Give a good idea to a mediocre team, and they will screw it up. But give a mediocre idea to a great team, and they will either fix it or come up with something better. ? If you don´t strive to uncover what is unseen and understand its nature, you will be ill prepared to lead. ? It´s not the manager´s job to prevent risks. It´s the manager´s job to make it safe for others to take them. ? The cost of preventing errors is often far greater than the cost of fixing them. ? A company´s communication structure should not mirror its organizational structure. Everybody should be able to talk to anybody. Praise for Creativity, Inc. ´´Over more than thirty years, Ed Catmull has developed methods to root out and destroy the barriers to creativity, to marry creativity to the pursuit of excellence, and, most impressive, to sustain a culture of disciplined creativity during setbacks and success.´´-Jim Collins, co-author of Built to Last and author of Good to Great ´´Too often, we seek to keep the status quo working. This is a book about breaking it.´´-Seth Godin
In 1977 a single film called Star Wars exploded on the consciousness of the world. Since then the franchise, created by George Lucas, has become a global entertainment corporation. The merchandise of the original trilogy was largely confined to toys and games, but those games have since become computerized, the toys more sophisticated, and Star Wars has moved into the multi-media environment of the twenty-first century in ways unimaginable in the long-ago world of 1977. Computer games and web sites, novels, animated television shows, as well as a new trilogy of films, have all placed Star Wars at the center of world popular culture. Finding the Force of the Star Wars Franchise brings together contributors who critically analyze the Star Wars universe from many perspectives. Topics include war, foreign policy, gender roles, spirituality and religion, toy play and adult collecting, creative fandom, race, special effects, and mythology.