A Box of Birds

Unbound Publishing
Free sample

Neuroscientist Dr Yvonne Churcher has problems in the world beyond her lab. One of her students, James, a dangerously attractive anti-science protestor, has set out to challenge her entire philosophy about how the brain works. His friend, Gareth, a brilliant, unstable computer genius, is obsessed with the biochemical basis of memory. When he tries to persuade Yvonne to get involved with a plan to stimulate memory artificially, it sets off a chain of events involving unscrupulous biotech companies, stolen brain-mapping data and a strange brand of eco-terrorism.

A Box of Birds is both a pacy literary thriller set in a near-future world of experimental brain research, and a compelling love story between a neuroscientist and an animal rights campaigner. It brilliant dramatizes the clash between two of the predominant philosophical positions of our age: the materialist view that science has all the answers and that 'we' are nothing more than bundles of nerves and chemical reactions, and the Freud-inspired position that underpins the culture of psychotherapy: that the stories we tell about ourselves and our pasts have the capacity to change our future. Does neuroscience really change our understanding of who we are? Or are we all at the mercy of our own need to make coherent stories?

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About the author

Charles Fernyhough is a writer and psychologist. The Baby in the Mirror, his book about his daughter’s psychological development, was translated into seven languages. His first novel, The Auctioneer, was widely praised, as was his 2012 non-fiction book on the new science of memory, Pieces of Light. He is a Reader in Psychology at Durham University and has written for the Guardian, the Financial Times and the Sunday Telegraph.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Unbound Publishing
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Published on
Aug 30, 2012
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Pages
288
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ISBN
9781908717580
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Language
English
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Genres
Fiction / General
Fiction / Literary
Fiction / Medical
Fiction / Thrillers / General
Fiction / Thrillers / Suspense
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Reading information

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Bob Easton thinks he has a cold. Before he dies in agony, four days later, he infects dozens of people. Local health agencies become quickly overwhelmed by the sick and dying and beg the CDC for help. Dr. Michael Beck and Cara Porter, a member of the Epidemic Intelligence Service, race to identify the deadly bug. They can't cure it until they know what it is.

Dennis and Andi Jensen and their children are terrified. Schools and offices close. Fresh food disappears from store shelves. Three of their children's friends die. Their neighbors are dying or running away, fleeing the unstoppable infection. Desperate, the Jensens join the exodus, making a nightmarish journey to their isolated mountain cabin along empty roads, through abandoned towns, past looted shopping malls.

The superbug—and the panic—quickly spreads beyond America's borders. On a packed plane, someone coughs—and at their destination, the pilots are told, "you can't land here." US military bases are quarantined. Yet the virus continues to spread. Some believe the plague is man-made. Others see it as a sign of the end times.

In the lab, Cara Porter makes a potentially fatal mistake. In the mountains, Andi Jensen tells her husband that she doesn't feel well.

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At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

In the heat of a passionate encounter, ecstasy suddenly turns to terror for renowned geneticist and TV personality Dr. Kathleen Sullivan. Stricken by a brain hemorrhage, she is rendered completely paralyzed and speechless . . . but still utterly aware; a prisoner inside her own body.

Kathleen is rushed to a Manhattan hospital, her chances of survival slim. Even if she pulls through, the likelihood that she’ll sustain permanent brain damage is near one hundred percent. But neither outcome can compare to the insidious fate in store for her masterminded by the very people entrusted with saving her life. As her lover, ER chief Richard Steele, watches and waits for a miracle, Kathleen becomes a pawn in a clandestine plot that runs deeper than medical politics–and reaches into the highest echelons of power at New York City Hospital.

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A luminous exploration of the nature of thoughts, from daydreams to the voices in our heads
At the moment you caught sight of this book, what were you thinking? Was your thought a stream of sensations? Or was it a voice in your head? Did you ask yourself, "I wonder what that's about?" Did you answer? And what does it mean if you did?

When someone says they hear voices in their head, they are often thought to be mentally ill. But, as Charles Fernyhough argues in The Voices Within, such voices are better understood as one of the chief hallmarks of human thought. Our inner voices can be self-assured, funny, profound, hesitant, or mean; they can appear in different accents and even in sign language. We all hear them-and we needn't fear them. Indeed, we cannot live without them: we need them, whether to make decisions or to bring a book's characters to life as we read. Studying them can enrich our understanding of ourselves, and our understanding of the world around us; it can help us understand the experiences of visionary saints, who might otherwise be dismissed as schizophrenics; to alleviate the suffering of those who do have mental health problems; and to understand why the person next to us on the subway just burst out laughing for no apparent reason.

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