Synopses & Reviews
Now in paperback, the acclaimed biography of the magician's magician, Howard Thurston.
and#160; and#147;There is no greater expert on the history of stage magicians than Jim Steinmeyer. His deep knowledge of the subject, combined with a remarkable mastery of magical know-how, makes this book a smart, fantastic read. I can't recommend it enough!and#8221; and#151;Neil Patrick Harris
and#160; and#160;and#147;Steinmeyer produces an engaging full-length biography of the man Orson Welles called and#145;the masterand#8217;and#133;Steinmeyer recovers, from the shadows of his greatest rival, a figure whose grandiose productions were an American institution for almost 30 years.and#8221; and#151;Publishers Weekly
and#160; and#147;Magician and author Jim Steinmeyer rescues a forgotten American icon from Houdiniand#8217;s shadow.and#8221;
and#151;AARP: The Magazine and#160; and#147;Thurston may have been forgotten, but The Last Greatest Magician In The World ably resurrects his legend and his awe-inspiring magic.and#8221;
and#151;The Onion A.V. Club and#160; "An erudite, challenging text full of difficult questions"
Here is the seminal biography of the magician's magician, Howard Thurston, a man who surpassed Houdini in the eyes of showmen and fans and set the standard fro how stage magic is performed today. and#160; Everyone knows Houdini-but who was Thurston? In this rich, vivid biography of the "greatest magician in the world," celebrated historian of stage magic Jim Steinmeyer captures the career and controversies of the wonder-worker extraordinaire, Howard Thurston. and#160; The public's fickleness over magicians has left Thurston all but forgotten today. Yet Steinmeyer shows how his story is one of the most remarkable in show business. During his life, from 1869 to 1936, Thurston successfully navigated the most dramatic changes in entertainment-from street performances to sideshows to wagon tours through America's still-Wild West to stage magic amid the glitter of grand theaters. Thurston became one of America's most renowned vaudeville stars, boldly performing an act with just a handful of playing cards, and then had the foresight to leave vaudeville, expanding his show into an extravaganza with more than forty tons of apparatus and costumes. His touring production was an American institution for nearly thirty years, and Thurston earned a brand name equal to Ziegfeld or Ringling Brothers. and#160; Steinmeyer explores the stage and psychological rivalry between Thurston and Houdini during the first decades of the twentieth century-a contest that Thurston won. He won with a bigger show, a more successful reputation, and the title of America's greatest magician. In The Last Greatest Magician in the World, Thurston's magic show is revealed as the one that animates our collective memories.
"[T]o blandly call this book inspiring would be dismissive of all the hard work that has gone into the mission in Afghanistan as well as the efforts to fund it. Mortenson writes of nothing less than saving the future, and his adventure is light years beyond most attempts." Booklist (starred review)
"A heartening follow-up....Three Cups of Tea is now required reading for counterinsurgency officers, and Mortenson effectively demonstrates the 'cascade of positive changes triggered by teaching a single girl how to read and write.' Inspiring evidence of the tsunami effects of a committed humanitarian." Kirkus Reviews
From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea
, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian's efforts to promote peace through education.
In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan after a massive earthquake hit the region in 2005; and the unique ways he has built relationships with Islamic clerics, militia commanders, and tribal leaders even as he was dodging shootouts with feuding Afghan warlords and surviving an eight-day armed abduction by the Taliban. He shares for the first time his broader vision to promote peace through education and literacy, as well as touching on military matters, Islam, and women-all woven together with the many rich personal stories of the people who have been involved in this remarkable two-decade humanitarian effort.
Since the 2006 publication of Three Cups of Tea, Mortenson has traveled across the U.S. and the world to share his vision with hundreds of thousands of people. He has met with heads of state, top military officials, and leading politicians who all seek his advice and insight. The continued phenomenal success of Three Cups of Tea proves that there is an eager and committed audience for Mortenson's work and message.
The author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea offers the continuing story of this determined humanitarian's efforts to promote peace through education. Filled with rich, personal stories and insights into the Middle East, this book is an inspiration — and a call to action.
About the Author
Greg Mortenson is the recipient of Pakistan's highest civil award (the Star of Pakistan) for his sixteen years work to promote education and peace. The cofounder of the Central Asia Institute and Pennies For Peace, he lives in Montana with his family.