Business & Economics

Finding the Bad Apples in the Barrel: Using the Market Value of Equity to Signal Banking Sector Vulnerabilities | ,

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This paper measures the performance of different metrics in assessing banking system vulnerabilities. It finds that metrics based on equity market valuations of bank capital are better than regulatory capital ratios, and other metrics, in spotting banks that failed (bad apples). This paper proposes that these market-based ratios could be used as a surveillance tool to assess vulnerabilities in the banking sector. While the measures may provide a somewhat fuzzy signal, it is better to have a strategy for identifying bad apples, even if sometimes the apples turn out to be fine, than not being able to spot any bad apples before the barrel has been spoiled..

Nature

Up on the River | John Madson

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Up on the River is John Madson’s loving and often hilarious tribute to the people, animal life, and places of the Upper Mississippi. Madson’s Upper Mississippi is the part “between the saints,” from St. Louis to St. Paul, and where for thirty years he explored the bright waters of the upper reaches of the mighty river itself as well as the tangled multitude of sloughs, cuts, and side channels that wander through its wooded islands and floodplain forests. “Some of my best time on the River has been in the company of game wardens, biologists, commercial fishermen, clammers, trappers, hunters, and a smelly, mud-smeared coterie of river rats in general, and my views of the River are far more likely to reflect theirs than those of the transportation industry,” Madson writes of his thirty-year acquaintance with the Mississippi. Traveling mainly by canoe and johnboat, he tells of encounters between archetypal commercial fishermen and archetypal game wardens over hot fish chowder, fishing for crappies in the tops of submerged trees and for walleyes amid gale force winds, nesting and migrating herons and ducks and eagles, the histories of river logging and pearling and button making, and towboats and barges and the lives of the “ramstugenous” people who move freight on the river. Learning about the Upper Mississippi via the wry tutelage of John Madson, who discovered that “whenever I am out on a river some of its freeness rubs off on me,” readers of this classic book will also come under the spell of this freeness..

Juvenile Fiction

The Scent of Apples | Jacquie McRae

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Libby has an idyllic life on an apple orchard and is close to her grandfather, a cider maker. When he dies in a freak accident, Libby is devastated. She finds it difficult to talk to her parents about her feelings as her mother seems cold and her father says little. Grieving, angry, and feeling distant from her parents who are struggling with their own relationship, she begins compulsively pulling her hair out. To get away from the unhappiness, Libby unwillingly goes to boarding school. There, she befriends Charlie, and goes to stay with her family, which is warm, friendly and fun. While there, Libby enjoys being part of all the outdoor adventures and gains new perspectives on herself and her parents. This young adult novel is a story of strong friendships and growing understanding that combine to overcome difficulties..

Business & Economics

Code and the City | Rob Kitchin,Sung-Yueh Perng

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Software has become essential to the functioning of cities. It is deeply embedded into the systems and infrastructure of the built environment and is entrenched in the management and governance of urban societies. Software-enabled technologies and services enhance the ways in which we understand and plan cities. It even has an effect on how we manage urban services and utilities. Code and the City explores the extent and depth of the ways in which software mediates how people work, consume, communication, travel and play. The reach of these systems is set to become even more pervasive through efforts to create smart cities: cities that employ ICTs to underpin and drive their economy and governance. Yet, despite the roll-out of software-enabled systems across all aspects of city life, the relationship between code and the city has barely been explored from a critical social science perspective. This collection of essays seeks to fill that gap, and offers an interdisciplinary examination of the relationship between software and contemporary urbanism. This book will be of interest to those researching or studying smart cities and urban infrastructure..

Performing Arts

Mystery Classics on Film | Ron Miller

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Watching the screen version of a classic mystery novel can be disappointing. By necessity or artistic license (or possibly just ego) changes are often made by the filmmakers—many of them ineffective or even detrimental. This book focuses on the screen adaptations of 65 famous mysteries and examines how the filmmakers either succeeded or failed in the telling of the story. Interviews with several famous mystery writers are included, with their comments on how filmmakers treated their work..

Fiction

A Stranger in the Kingdom | Howard Frank Mosher

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This novel of murder and its aftermath in a small Vermont town in the 1950s is “reminiscent of To Kill a Mockingbird . . . Absorbing” (The New York Times). In Kingdom County, Vermont, the town’s new Presbyterian minister is a black man, an unsettling fact for some of the locals. When a French-Canadian woman takes refuge in his parsonage—and is subsequently murdered—suspicion immediately falls on the clergyman. While his thirteen-year-old son struggles in the shadow of the town’s accusations, and his older son, a lawyer, fights to defend him, a father finds himself on trial more for who he is than for what he might have done. “Set in northern Vermont in 1952, Mosher’s tale of racism and murder is powerful, viscerally affecting and totally contemporary in its exposure of deep-seated prejudice and intolerance . . . [A] big, old-fashioned novel.” —Publishers Weekly “A real mystery in the best and truest sense.”—Lee Smith, The New York Times Book Review A Winner of the New England Book Award.

Literary Collections

Walden | Henry David Thoreau

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This is one of the most important works by the most important American philosopher: Henry David Thoreau, vital figure in the Transcendentalist movement, hero to environmentalists and ecologists, profound thinker on humanity's happiness. First published in 1854, Walden collects the penetrating reflections from the two years Thoreau lived in solitude on the shores of Massachusetts' Walden Pond. In lucid, poetic prose, Thoreau ponders the beauty of living simply and in communion with nature. It is a work of pastoral magnificence and wisdom that has moved generations of readers. Writer and philosopher HENRY DAVID THOREAU (1817-1862) was born in Concord, Massachusetts, and educated at Harvard University. His writings on human nature, materialism, and the natural world rank him among the most influential thinkers of American literature..

Fiction

Hot Lead and Cold Apple Pie | Anne Evans

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Jenny Thompson takes great pleasure in her job as secretary to the sheriff. He consults her on cases, and, contrary to what the sheriff things, Jenny's convinced she single-handedly protects the town. Then, college-educated lawman Cal Westwood arrives to combat a notorious outlaw and his gang. Determined to run Cal out on a rail before he can take over her sheriff office, Jenny will stop short of nothing. Initially, Cal’s attracted to Jenny’s elusive green eyes, but that’s before she convinces the town flirt and the entire temperance league to aim their ire at him. He has a gang to catch, his fallen comrade to avenge, and he’s not going to let one interfering woman ruin it for him. But he might have underestimated Jenny.Will hot lead and quick trigger fingers ignite not just shootouts, but love? Or will their feuding give the outlaw the opportunity he needs to kill them all?.

Religion

Finding Selah | Kristen Kill

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That something you’ve been looking for in the empty stress of your mad-dash days? It has a name. The Psalms call it selah—the pause, rest, or interlude between the notes in a song. More than merely an empty space, selah is a chance to stop and resync with the story and song of God. For all the ways life keeps you running, this word and practice offers a way to re-center yourself on the One who holds all things together and makes all things beautiful. Stretched beyond her capacity in caring for a large family in the middle of Manhattan, Kristen Kill was exhausted, depressed, and desperate for a change. Then something sparked within her when she read the Psalms, and found that often all that stood between the psalmist’s cries for help and celebrations of praise was this simple word, selah. Join Kristen in Finding Selah for a journey that will transform the way you think about work, rest, and the little spaces in between that make all the difference. This book will show you how to tune your ear to the song God is singing over you, embrace the “selah moments” able to transform your daily rhythms, and most of all, encounter the ultimate Selah in Christ, who stands in the gap between heaven and your most hectic of days. There is hope for the dissonance you feel. Finding Selah will show you not only how to sing a new song, but to live a new way..

Music

Finding an Ending | Philip Kitcher,Richard Schacht

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Few musical works loom as large in Western culture as Richard Wagner's four-part Ring of the Nibelung. In Finding an Ending, two eminent philosophers, Philip Kitcher and Richard Schacht, offer an illuminating look at this greatest of Wagner's achievements, focusing on its far-reaching and subtle exploration of problems of meanings and endings in this life and world. Kitcher and Schacht plunge the reader into the heart of Wagner's Ring, drawing out the philosophical and human significance of the text and the music. They show how different forms of love, freedom, heroism, authority, and judgment are explored and tested as it unfolds. As they journey across its sweeping musical-dramatic landscape, Kitcher and Schacht lead us to the central concern of the Ring--the problem of endowing life with genuine significance that can be enhanced rather than negated by its ending, if the right sort of ending can be found. The drama originates in Wotan's quest for a transformation of the primordial state of things into a world in which life can be lived more meaningfully. The authors trace the evolution of Wotan's efforts, the intricate problems he confronts, and his failures and defeats. But while the problem Wotan poses for himself proves to be insoluble as he conceives of it, they suggest that his very efforts and failures set the stage for the transformation of his problem, and for the only sort of resolution of it that may be humanly possible--to which it is not Siegfried but rather Br?nnhilde who shows the way. The Ring's ending, with its passing of the gods above and destruction of the world below, might seem to be devastating; but Kitcher and Schacht see a kind of meaning in and through the ending revealed to us that is profoundly affirmative, and that has perhaps never been so powerfully and so beautifully expressed..

Juvenile Fiction

Idun and the Apples of Youth | Joan Holub,Suzanne Williams

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From the authors of the Goddess Girls series comes the third book in a series steeped in Norse mythology, magic, adventure, and friendship. Twelve-year-old Idun is the goddess of youth, and her magical and deliciously sweet golden apples are what keep all of the academy’s gods and goddesses healthy and youthful. They grow year-round—even in winter snow—in one very special grove in Asgard. But when the mischievous Loki ends up making a bet that jeopardizes Idun—and her powerful apples—she must figure out a way to protect herself and her magical orchards from a giant who wants those apples all to himself! Can Idun save the apples—and the gods and goddesses who rely on them—from the two bad seeds at Asgard Academy?.

Fiction

Pablo de Segovia, the Spanish Sharper | Francisco de Quevedo

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Pablo de Segovia, the Spanish Sharper, chronicles the adventures of Don Pablos, who is driven in life to become a swindler and a rogue because his previous efforts to 'rise above his station' in life and become a gentlemen - fail miserably. A satire on Spanish life, this is the only novel published by Francisco de Quevedo..

Biography & Autobiography

Finding My Balance | Mariel Hemingway

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Actress Mariel Hemingway uses the lessons and practices of yoga as a starting point for her own personal reflections and a larger-than-life family story. The result is a searingly honest memoir that is firmly practical, as well as a moving narrative of the author's struggle to deal with a complex and often stressful life. Mariel was the third daughter born to Jack Hemingway, Ernest Hemingway's son, and Byra Whittlesey. Her older sister, Muffet, suffered for years from instability, while middle sister Margaux, a celebrated actress and model who was caught up in the fast lane, eventually died of the effects of her driven lifestyle. Their mother, Byra, was darkly moody and emotionally quixotic, and made no secret of her disdain for her husband, while Jack, himself insecure in no small part because of his celebrated father, a man he never really felt he knew, was an indifferent parent at best. Even before she was a teenager, Mariel was forced to assume the role of stable center of her family. In just about every way, she never really had a childhood of her own, a situation that was exacerbated by her sudden thrust into celebrity when she was first cast in sister Margaux's film Lipstick, then in Woody Allen's Manhattan. Suddenly, Mariel was a movie star. Always an athletic person, Mariel turned to yoga and its meditative practice in an effort to maintain her center while much of her life threatened to spin out of control. As the title of this remarkable memoir suggests, much of her adult life has been directed toward finding and maintaining her balance in situations that have been heartbreakingly unsettling and emotionally disorienting. Throughout the book, Mariel uses her yoga training as a starting point for each chapter, carefully describing a particular position, then letting her mind wander into thoughts of the past and her rocky life. As each chapter begins with instruction, so does the book end in the same way, the exercises this time organized in a sequence that can be followed by anyone who wants to practice them. Included are photos of Mariel as she performs the various moves. Living the life now of wife and mother to two teenaged daughters while still pursuing a career in film, Mariel Hemingway has weathered some of the worst storms that life can bring. Certainly she has found her balance. And in this deeply inspiring, thoroughly fascinating memoir, she shares for the first time the story of that journey..

Fiction

Finding My Way Home | Pam Estes

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Finding My Way Home is a historical fiction book. It details the lives of the two main characters, Bobbie James, and Allie Stephens. The book is set in the 1940s and describes what life was like during this era. This is a fictional work, but the story is based on actual people, places, and events. Travel with Allie as she is forced to move from her childhood home in Elizabeth to Elm Springs, Arkansas. Experience what it was like for her to work in the strawberry fields, begin a new school, and weather the storms of life. Journey with Bobbie through cotton fields, a haunted house, and an encounter on a train. You will laugh at the predicaments these two individuals find themselves and be brought to tears by their struggles. Above all, you will be entertained and inspired by this simple story of faith, family, and fun..

Fiction

Sucker Punch | Marc Strange

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Short-listed for the 2008 Arthur Ellis Award for Best First Crime Novel Joe Grundy is an ex-heavyweight boxer whose main claim to fame was that he got knocked out by champ Evander Holyfield. Now he’s chief of security for a posh old hotel, the Lord Douglas, in downtown Vancouver, and life is pretty good. But then a young neo-hippie inherits more than half a billion dollars and decides to give it all away. As soon as the kid checks into the Lord Douglas with the intention of holding a press conference to announce the scheme, Joe knows big trouble is headed his way, especially when the kid winds up dead. Grundy sets out to discover who murdered the would-be philanthropist only to collide with suspects and sucker punches around every corner. Joe had some pretty tough battles during his days in the ring, but this time the stakes are higher, the opponents are lethal, and the final count could be fatal..

Literary Criticism

The Good of the Novel | Liam McIlvanney,Ray Ryan

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Brings together leading critics and novelists with some of the finest contemporary novels to answer probing questions about the role of the modern novel..

Fiction

Not All Tarts Are Apple | Pip Granger

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A wonderfully warm and charming London saga, set in the Soho of the 1950s. If you like Donna Douglas and Nancy Revell, you'll love this! "She brings the East End to life..." - Barbara Windsor "A poignant story with a strong authentic backdrop..."-Woman & Home "I enjoyed this book so much and would recommend it to anyone..." -- ***** Reader review "Great fun to read, amusing..." -- ***** Reader review ******************************** WINNER OF THE HARRY BOWLING PRIZE FOR FICTION. WHAT IF EVERYTHING YOU KNEW COULD BE TAKEN FROM YOU IN A FLASH? Rosie has always lived with her eagle-eyed Auntie Maggie and Uncle Bert in their café in Soho, often visited by her mother - the mysterious, and often drunk, Perfumed Lady. Yet, her mother's family - landed gentry who hail from a country estate near Bath - are desperate to get their hands on Sophie and will stop at nothing - even kidnap- to get her... Will Rosie have to leave the Soho and the neighbours she knows and loves - Great Aunt Dodie, Madame Zelda and Paulette, Sharky, Maltese Joe and the Campini Family who run the delicatessen in Old Compton Street - for good? Rosie's story continues in The Widow Ginger..

Business & Economics

Future Viability, Business Models, and Values | Friedrich Glauner

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This book challenges the traditional models of modern economy, business education and management, which are devoted to the concepts of scarcity, competition, growth and yield. It deconstructs the spiral of acceleration in which technological shifts concerning global markets and enterprises produce a dynamic of unbridled disruption, concentration and erosion of human and natural resources. The book analyzes how, in the face of this dynamic, once successful business models increasingly lead to existential jeopardy.The book embeds its argument in the impact of technological change on strategy in general. It subsequently analyzes the degree of rationality in the strategy building process to juxtapose revenue and responsibility as the fundamental principles of diverging strategic concepts. In its central chapters the book explores the benefits of consciousness-driven business models and value-added strategies for the awareness markets of the future and their impact on team excellence and resource handling. It develops an understanding of how corporations can function as ecosystems – fostering the growth and development of the resources they operate on, rather than being based on their exploitation. Understanding this structure of viable future business models is the overall theme of this pioneering book. “This book endeavors to set out yet another paradigm for a viable economics, the paradigm of ethicology. It seeks to replace the concepts of competition, scarcity and growth with strategies and business models based on resource creation, added values cycles, enrichment and symbiosis in line with the awareness economy it describes.” Hunter Lovins,President and Founder of Natural Capitalism Solutions “... a very basic paradigm shift in our future strategies ...” Henner Klein, Chairman Emeritus A.T. Kearney “The book stands right on the tectonic fault line between our old and our new reality. It manages to do both: analyze the shifting paradigms and provoke new thinking.” Dr. Martin R. Stuchtey, Director of the McKinsey Center for Business & Environment “This book is raising the bar. His vision dares to rethink the principles of the liberal and social market economy in a globalized business world.” Prof. Dr. René Schmidpeter, CBS Köln “A book worth reading and reflecting on. Onwards to an economy that works for 100% of humanity.” Michael Pirson,Associate Professor, Director Center for Humanistic Management, Fordham University and Research Fellow, Harvard University „ ... powerful arguments and practical guidance on how companies can become sustainable and live up to the realities of global enterprise ...” Michael Hilti, Hilti AG.

Fiction

Miss Molly Robbins Designs a Seduction | Jayne Fresina

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Praise for The Wicked Wedding of Miss Ellie Vyne: "[The characters] banter and quibble with comic perfection."—Publishers Weekly "Wickedly funny, fast and sassy romance."—RT Book Reviews She Designs Dresses for London's Leading Ladies Molly Robbins is finally stepping into the spotlight. Her unique dress designs have caught the eye of London's elite. And if it means her own dress shop, proper Molly will make a deal with the devil himself—the notoriously naughty Earl of Everscham. But becoming his mistress is not a part of their arrangement. It's right there in the contract's fine print: No Tomfoolery. He's an Expert at Taking Them Off Carver Danforthe has a reputation for beautiful mistresses, cutting remarks, and shirking his responsibilities—not for indulging the ambitions of his sister's maid. He must have been drunk when he signed that blasted contract. The stubborn female may thing she's gotten the best of him, but what this situation calls for is a little hands-on negotiating... All's Fair in Love and Fashion.

Computers

User Centric Media | Petros Daras,Oscar Mayora Ibarra

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This book constitutes the thoroughly refereed post-conference proceedings of the First International Conference, UCMedia 2009, which was held on 9-11 December 2009 at Hotel Novotel Venezia Mestre Castellana in Venice, Italy. The conference`s focus was on forms and production, delivery, access, discovery and consumption of user centric media. After a thorough review process of the papers received, 23 were accepted from open call for the main conference and 20 papers for the workshops..