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Sympathy for the Devil Paperback – August 1, 2010
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"Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress"
Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? Cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, and instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise. Learn more
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From Publishers Weekly
Hugo winner Pratt turns his Locus-honed editing skills to the crowded field of themed anthologies. His chosen unifying element is the Devil, or devils, broadly interpreted in 36 original and reprinted works. Bygone days are represented by an excerpt from Dante's Inferno; well-known 19th-century tales such as Hawthorne's "Young Goodman Brown" and Stevenson's "The Bottle Imp"; and stories from the golden age of pulp fantasy, such as Bloch's "That Hell-Bound Train" and Sturgeon's "The Professor's Teddy Bear." The newer offerings are equally wide-ranging, including Kelly Link's poignant, recursive "Lull"; Holly Black's giggle-out-loud "A Reversal of Fortune"; and China Miéville's vividly creepy "Details." Anyone delighted by con games, terrified of damnation, and not offended by Pratt's cheeky dedication ("Thank you, Satan! I couldn't have done it without you") will find plenty to enjoy.
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This theme anthology includes classics from the nineteenth century (Nathaniel Hawthorne, Robert Louis Stevenson, Mark Twain); all kinds of goodies from the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, including Robert Bloch’s “The Hell-bound Train;” a parody of Faust by John Kessel and Steven King’s “The Man in the Black Suit,” for a total of 35 stories and a translation by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow of the 36th canto of Dante’s Inferno. The anthology is distinguished for both variety and quality, and is a good purchase for both home and public libraries. --Frieda Murray
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I particularly like ending with the bit of Dante's Inferno -- proof that, hundreds of years ago, the devil was still on the case in our psyches.