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Blog posts of '2014' 'March'

Bending Adversity
Financial Times Asia editor David Pilling spent many years as a correspondent based in Tokyo, returning to Japan just after the country was devastated by the 2011 tsunami. In the wake of the storm, Pilling interviewed numerous Japanese, including novelist Haruki Murakami, former prime minister Junichiro Koizumi, industrialists and bankers, activists and artists, teenagers and octogenarians, in an attempt to de-mystify the often misunderstood island nation.
Spring Travel Books: Publishers Weekly's Top Ten
If you haven't made those summer travel plans yet, it’s time to start plotting. For inspiration, browse Publishers Weekly's top ten travel books that are not to be missed, due out this spring.
The Thing with Feathers
When placed in front of a mirror, a group of captive Eurasian Magpies faced off with their never-before-seen reflections with aggression and alarm.  After a closer look, however, the birds began to scratch the colorful dots on their chins, watching closely as this action was shadowed in the mirror. The birds had recognized themselves, demonstrating a remarkable, human-like intelligence.
The Sibley Guide to Birds: 2nd Edition
Every morning those of us socked by the winter vortex wake hopeful for the first sounds of spring:  the crack of a baseball bat, the roar of a lawnmower coming to life and, of course, birdsong. As the weather warms everyone -- from the avid birder to the chilled layperson eager to spot the first robin -- will be able to identify those feathered signposts of a milder season. The Sibley Guide to Birds, last released in 2000, is now available in a new, revised and updated second edition.
The Broken Road
“I didn’t go to university; I went traveling instead,” Patrick Leigh Fermor said about his 1933 walk across Europe at the age of 18. The now-complete trilogy documenting his journey is essential curriculum for any traveler.
And the Oscar Goes To...
The Oscars don’t have a book to film category, but if they did director Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years a Slave, based on the autobiography of Solomon Northrup, would have taken it home. The film won best picture, best supporting role for Lupita Nyong'o’s stellar performance and best adapted screenplay for John Ridley’s work with the original text.