Amish Confidential

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Go behind the beards in this daring insider’s look at the curious Amish subculture of Pennsylvania Dutch Country!

Is the “plain and simple” life really so plain and simple? How do the Amish live without cars? Electricity? NFL football? The truth is, they don’t. More than fifty million people have watched “Lebanon” Levi Stoltzfus in Discovery Channel’s hit show Amish Mafia, where he dispenses justice and keeps the peace among the seemingly quiet, insular Amish people of Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Now, he reveals what it’s really like to be Amish. Not the buggies, bonnets, and beards image the tight-knit community has portrayed for hundreds of years to the relentless curiosity of outsiders. The real-deal, day-to-day life—the good and the bad—all the dirty little secrets you’re not supposed to know. From Wi-Fi “pleasure huts,” to prostitutes, to marijuana and cocaine, you’ll never look at the Amish the same.

It isn’t easy keeping your feet planted firmly in the 1800s when the rest of the world is centuries ahead. Not even for the most God-fearing among us. The Amish have their own unique way of doing everything, and the lengths they will go to indulge in modern conveniences—and hide their indiscretions—will shock you. What have you been dying to know? How about what really happens when someone is shunned? Or whether the Amish pay taxes? Do they ever try to “pass” as English (in other words, non-Amish)? How rampant is illicit sex in such a repressed society? Can individuals make themselves stand out despite the strict rules? Why would the Amish take such risks when the punishment is eternal damnation?

“Lebanon” Levi blows the top off the buggy with this scandalous insider’s exposé, proving that even the Amish don’t always practice what they preach.
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About the author

“Lebanon” Levi Stoltzfus is the star of Discovery Channel’s hit show Amish Mafia. He was raised Old Order Amish (the most traditional kind), speaking Pennsylvania Dutch in Pennsylvania’s rural Lancaster and Lebanon counties. The Ordnung, the Amish code of conduct, does not prevent him from speaking freely about the closed society because he was never baptized into the church.

Ellis Henican is a newspaper columnist, a television commentator, and the coauthor of five New York Times bestsellers, including Damn Few.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Simon and Schuster
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Published on
Mar 31, 2015
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Pages
288
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ISBN
9781501110320
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Cultural, Ethnic & Regional / General
Biography & Autobiography / Religious
Social Science / Customs & Traditions
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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Award-winning journalist and host of Black "Enterprise" Business Report Caroline Clarke's moving memoir of her surprise discovery of her birthmother—Cookie Cole, the daughter of Nat King Cole—and the relationship that blossomed between them through the heartfelt messages they exchanged on hundreds of postcards.

Caroline Clarke was born in an era when adoptions were shameful, secret, and sealed. While she wondered about her biological parents, she kept her curiosity in check, until a series of small health problems raised concerns about her genetic heritage and its consequences for her two children's lives and her own.

Though Spence-Chapin Family Service, the agency that handled her adoption, could not reveal the name of her birth mother, it was able to provide details that lead to a shocking truth. Caroline's birth mother and her family were related to a friend. The woman who gave her life was none other than Carole "Cookie" Cole, the daughter of iconic crooner and pianist Nat King Cole.

Drawing on details provided by the agency and her own investigative skills, Caroline embarked on a life-changing journey of discovery that stretched from coast to coast, forged through e-mail, phone calls, and post cards. The constancy, volume, and intimacy of her steady correspondence with Cookie filled the days and distance between them. Through brief yet poignant messages squeezed onto three-inch open-faced squares, mother and daughter revealed themselves, sharing secrets, taking risks, and ultimately building a bond like no other.

A heartfelt, inspiring tribute to both Caroline's adoptive parents and her biological mother, Postcards from Cookie illuminates the enduring power of love to shape and guide our lives.

Dionne Warwick made her singing debut in church at the request of her grandfather, the Reverend Elzae Warrick, when she was six years old. No one knew then that she would become an international music legend, but what she knew—as words of wisdom passed down from her grandfather—was that "if you can think it, you can do it." And she did it. Dionne released the first of more than fifty-six charted hits in 1962 with "Don’t Make Me Over," followed by "Anyone Who Had a Heart," "Walk On By," "I Say a Little Prayer," "Alfie," and "A House Is Not a Home," to name a few. She received her first Grammy in 1968 for "Do You Know the Way to San Jose" and later recorded the classic hit "That’s What Friends Are For." She was considered the voice of Burt Bacharach/Hal David compositions, and the rest is here, in her first autobiography. Dionne tells the stories of her life from her childhood in East Orange, New Jersey, in a two-family home with her parents, brother, and sister, to now, as she celebrates her fiftieth year in show business.

She came by her musical gifts honestly. Her mother, Lee Drinkard Warrick, was a founding member of the legendary Drinkard Jubilairs, which included her mother’s siblings Cissy, Marie, Annie, Nick, and Larry. Cissy went on to become a celebrated recording artist in her own right; she lived in the Warrick household, got married, and later gave birth to one of the most popular singers of our time, Whitney Houston. Dionne went on to start her own gospel group with her sister, Dee Dee, called the Gospelaires. Her father, once a Pullman porter, became an accountant, went on to promote gospel records for Hob Records, and wrote a book on gospel music. She attributes her strong family, who are faithful and industrious Christians, for keeping her grounded and giving her the fortitude, as well as the talent, to earn her place among world-class performing artists without losing herself or her soul.
"James Nolan looks back unsparingly on a time few writers have faced with such clarity and compassion. There's suspense and beauty on every page . . ."

--Andrei Codrescu

Flight Risk takes off as a page-turning narrative with deep roots and a wide wingspan. James Nolan, a fifth-generation New Orleans native, offers up an intimate portrait both of his insular hometown and his generation's counterculture. Flight runs as a theme throughout the book, which begins with Nolan's escape from the gothic mental hospital to which his parents committed the teenaged poet during the tumult of 1968. This breakout is followed by the self-styled revolutionary's hair-raising flight from a Guatemalan jail, and years later, by the author's bolt from China, where he ditched his teaching position and collectivist ideals. These Houdini-like feats foreshadow a more recent one, how he dodged biblical floods in a stolen school bus three days after Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans.

Nolan traces these flight patterns to those of his French ancestors who fled to New Orleans in the mid-nineteenth century, established a tobacco business in the French Quarter, and kept the old country alive in their Creole demimonde. The writer describes the eccentric Seventh Ward menagerie of the extended family in which he grew up, his early flirtation with extremist politics, and a strong bond with his freewheeling grandfather, a gentleman from the Gilded Age. Nolan's quest for his own freedom takes him to the flower-powered, gender-bending San Francisco of the sixties and seventies, as well as to an expatriate life in Spain during the heady years of that nation's transition to democracy. Like the prodigal son, he eventually returns home to live in the French Quarter, around the corner from where his grandmother grew up, only to struggle through the aftermath of Katrina and the city's resurrection.

Many of these stories are entwined with the commentaries of a wry flaneur, addressing such subjects as the nuances of race in New Orleans, the Disneyfication of the French Quarter, the numbing anomie of digital technology and globalization, the challenges of caring for aging parents, Creole funeral traditions, how to make a soul-searing gumbo, and what it really means to belong.

From leadership expert, former Navy SEAL, "American Grit" feature player, and author of Worth Dying For: A Navy SEAL's Call to a Nation, Rorke Denver, the bestselling account of how he helped create the U.S. Navy SEALS of today. Rorke Denver trains the men who become Navy SEALs--the most creative problem solvers on the modern battlefield, ideal warriors for the kinds of wars America is fighting now. With his years of action-packed mission experience and a top training role, Lieutenant Commander Denver understands exactly how tomorrow's soldiers are recruited, sculpted, motivated, and deployed.

Now, Denver takes you inside his personal story and the fascinating, demanding SEAL training program he now oversees. He recounts his experience evolving from a young SEAL hopeful pushing his way through Hell Week, into a warrior engaging in dangerous stealth missions across the globe, and finally into a lieutenant commander directing the indoctrination, requalification programs, and the "Hero or Zero" missions his SEALs undertake.

From his own SEAL training and missions overseas, Denver details how the SEALs' creative operations became front and center in America's War on Terror-and how they are altering warfare everywhere. In fourteen years as a SEAL officer, Rorke Denver tangled with drug lords in Latin America, stood up to violent mobs in Liberia, and battled terrorists in Iraq and Afghanistan. Leading 200 commando missions, he earned the Bronze Star with V for valor. He has also served as flag aide to the admiral in charge and spent the past four years as executive officer of the Navy Special Warfare Center's Advanced Training Command in Coronado, California, directing all phases of the basic and advanced training that prepare men for war in SEAL teams. He recently starred in the film Act of Valor. He is married and has two daughters.

Ellis Henican is a columnist at Newsday and an on-air commentator at the Fox News Channel. He has written two recent New York Times bestsellers, Home Team with New Orleans Saints coach Sean Payton and In the Blink of an Eye with NASCAR legend Michael Waltrip.

With all the SEALs' recent successes, we have been getting a level of acclaim we're not used to. But something important has been missing in this warm burst of publicity . Correcting that is my mission here.
My own SEAL dream was launched by a book. My hope is that this one teaches lessons that go far beyond the battlefield, inspiring a fresh generation of warriors to carry on that dream.
-Lieutenant Commander Rorke Denver
There was one lap to go in the 2001 Daytona 500, NASCAR's most celebrated event. Michael Waltrip and Dale Earnhardt Jr. were running one-two. Junior's legendary dad, the driver race fans called "The Intimidator," was close behind in third, blocking anyone who might try to pass. Waltrip couldn't stop thinking about all the times he'd struggled to stay ahead--and the 462 NASCAR Cup races he'd lost without a single win. He'd been a race-car driver all his adult life, following in the footsteps of his brother Darrell, a three-time NASCAR champion. And his losing streak was getting more painful every race.

But this day, he knew, could be different. He was driving for Dale Earnhardt now, racing as a team with his close friend and mentor. Yet as his car roared toward the finish line, ending that losing streak once and for all, Waltrip had no clue that the greatest triumph of his life could get mired in terrible tragedy.

This is the story of that fateful afternoon in Daytona, a day whose echoes are still heard today. But the story begins years earlier in a small town in Kentucky, with a boy who dreamed of racing cars, a boy who was determined to go from go-karts to the highest levels of NASCAR. For the first time ever, Michael Waltrip tells the full, revealing story of how he got to Daytona, what happened there, and the huge impact it had on so many in the racing world. He reveals for the first time how his own life changed as he dealt with guilt, faced his grief, and searched for the fortitude to climb into a race car again. It's an inspiring and powerful story, told with Michael's trademark humor, honesty, and irreverence. It's a story of family, fulfillment, and redemption--and well-earned victory in the end.
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