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The Heretic's Handbook of Quotations, edited by Charles Bufe cover graphic

Quote of the Week

"What harm can a book do that costs a hundred crowns? Twenty volumes folio will never make a revolution. It is the little pocket pamphlets of 30 sous that are to be feared."

(Our Quote of the Week is taken from The Heretic's Handbook of Quotations, Charles Bufe, ed. When we're in the mood, we change our Quotation of the Week between 15:00 and 21:00 GMT on Mondays; ditto for our Definition of the Week.)
The American Heretic's Dictionary, Revised & Expanded, by Chaz Bufe 
cover graphic

Definition of the Week

APARTMENT BUILDING, n. A means of extortion, the chief advantage of which is that the sheep which fall victim to it are shorn by a shears known as “rent,” perhaps the most efficient means ever devised of obtaining money while performing no useful work. Further advantages are that the owner of the shears, the extortionist or “landlord,” runs absolutely no legal risk and does not even need to compel the sheep to submit to their monthly shearing, that function being performed at public expense by an enforcer known as the “county sheriff.”

(Our Definition of the Week is taken from the upcoming revised and expanded edition of The American Heretic's Dictionary scheduled for June 2016.)

New Books

  • The Anarchist Cookbook, by Keith McHenry with Chaz Bufe, with an introduction by Chris Hedges. Anarchists have talked for decades about producing an anarchist cookbook, a book whose contents accurately reflect its title. A book written by anarchists that delivers recipes for social change, recipes for tasty food, and accurate information about anarchism. There have been several false starts on such a book, but no one has ever published one. Until now. Bon appetit!

    Popmatters recently ran a nice review of the "Cookbook." The review reads in part:

    "Newly published, prefaced by a typically charged introduction by Chris Hedges, the 2015 publication of The Anarchist Cookbook features a lively tone and inspiring argument. . . . [It's an] affordable and handsomely produced compendium."

    The full review is on the Popmatters site.

    Keith McHenry will be on the road in 2016 doing author readings at bookstores and other venues. So far we have readings scheduled in California, Arizona, and New Mexico. Co-author Chaz Bufe will join Keith at the readings in Arizona.

    Keith's first reading is coming up in less than two weeks in San Francisco on Tuesday January 12 at 7:00 pm at Green Apple Books, 306 Clement Street, San Francisco.

    We'll be adding other appearances shortly. Here's the schedule so far:

    • Tuesday January 12, 2016 at 7:00 pm at Green Apple Books, 506 Clement, San Francisco, CA  7:00 pm
    • Wednesday January 27, 2016  at 7:00 pm at Bookworks Albuquerque, 4022 Rio Grande Blvd. NW, Albuquerque, NM 87107; 505.344.8139
    • Friday, February 19, 2016 at 8:00 pm at Lawn Gnome Books, 905 N 5th Street, Phoenix, AZ 85004
    • Saturday, February 20, 2016 at 2:00 pm at Barnes and Noble, 5130 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson, AZ 85711
    • March 26, 2016 at 2pm at The Avid Reader, 617 2nd St, Davis, CA 95616; (530) 758-4040
    • Saturday, April 23, 2016  from 8:00am to 6:00pm at the Albuquerque Convention Center. 401 2nd St NW, Albuquerque, NM 87102
    • July 29-31, 2016 at The World Vegan Summit & Expo at The University of California Berkeley

  • Pamela Sutter's pointed and funny May the Farce be with You: A Lighthearted Look at why God does not exist is our first e-book-only title. It covers such topics as prayer (if god is omniscient, why bother?), the egocentricity of "believers," evolution vs. creationism, the anthropic principle, and much more. It also contains nearly two dozen cartoons, many of which are very funny, and which The Moral Atheist touts as "hilarious."

    May the Farce be with You is now available in all e-book formats (ePub, PDF, Mobi) from all major e-book sellers (Amazon, B&N, Kobo, Apple, et al.) and can be read on any e-reading device.

    Here's one of the book's more than 20 illustrations.

    We've put up several of the other illustrations from May the Farce be with You on our blog You can find them in the Humor and Religion categories.

Upcoming Books

  • The Unkindness of Ravens, by Earl Lee. (April 2016) A mind-bending alternative history / military sci-fi / time travel tale set in the Civil War era, in an America in which the American Revolution failed in the original 13 colonies, but in which exiles from those colonies founded a new nation in the "western" (west of the Appalachians) territories. The action revolves around the attempts of the British to destroy the new nation and also around the many unintended consequences of time travel.
  • The American Heretic's Dictionary (Revised & Expanded), by Chaz Bufe, (June 2016) is the best modern successor to Ambrose Bierce's The Devil's Dictionary. This revised and expanded edition contains over twice as many definitions as the original edition (650+ vs. 320), several additional illustrations by J.R. Swanson, and an appendix containing the best 200 definitions by Bierce.

    Some comments on the original edition:

    "Such bitterness, such negativity, such unbridled humor, wit and sarcasm."
    —Mensa Bulletin

    "The quirky cartoons by J.R. Swanson nicely complement Bufe's cruel wit. Recommended." —Free Inquiry

    "Sick and offensive." —Small Press

  • 20 Reasons to Abandon Christianity, by Chaz Bufe, is a slightly updated version of the popular pamphlet of the same title. It covers Christianity's cruelty, authoritarianism, misogyny, homophobia, anti-intellectualism, and 15 other reasons to abandon it. It's at the converter now and will be available as a low-cost ($1.99) e-book in February. The updates mostly correct a few minor errors in the text. The original version is available free in html format here.

Recent Books

  • The Watcher cover graphicThe Watcher, by Nicholas P. Oakley is a fine coming-of-age tale with well drawn characters in a far-future setting, brimming with social and political questions on technology, primitivism, ecology, and the uses and misuses of consensus process.

    Here's a portion of the Publishers Weekly review of The Watcher:

    "[The author] provides a degree of complexity in what could very easily have been a one-sided didactic novel. This ambivalent examination of an idealist society and its less than ideal behavior offers the hope that Oakley will grow into a significant SF novelist."

    The full review is on our Reviews page.

  • Bible Tales for Ages 18 and Up, by G. Richard Bozarth, consists of excerpts from the Terminally Ill Sea Scrolls, discovered in 1947 in Israel by Dr. Sebaceous Piafraus in the same month as the Dead Sea Scrolls. The Dead Sea Scrolls became internationally famous, but the Terminally Ill Sea Scrolls were consigned to obscurity, along with their discoverer, who endured too many years of ego-bruising neglect. Finally, decades later, Dr. Piafraus provides us with translations of his scrolls, which he insists provide the most authentic versions of many Old Testament stories, because the Jewish end-times cult that created the Scrolls claimed that they were. These stories are more fully developed than in the Old Testament and are humorous, though some parts are appalling, because Bible stories often are appalling.

  • Culture Wars cover graphicCulture Wars: The Threat to Your Family and Your Freedom, by Marie Alena Castle. Boldly stated and passionately argued, this wide-ranging book analyzes the impact religion has on culture and daily life in the United States. Culture Wars delves into the theology of intrusive religions, and goes on to shows that many of our laws are based in religious belief and have harmful effects on individuals and society.

    "In this hard-hitting book, longtime Minnesota activist Castle exhaustively catalogues the myriad threats to religious freedom and church-state separation posed by clericalists, fundamentalists, and their political allies and enablers." —Free Inquiry

  • Best of Social Anarchism cover graphicThe Best of Social Anarchism, Howard Ehrlich and a.h.s. boy editors. Social Anarchism is one of the longest-running and most respected anarchist journals in the United States. Since its appearance in 1980, the journal has published hundreds upon hundreds of articles by writers such as Janet Biehl, Brian Martin, Brian Morris, and Colin Ward.

    At over 400 pages, this massive collection contains an introduction by Jeff Shantz, Howard Ehrlich's highly amusing history of the journal, and Social Anarchism's 30 best articles divided into five major categories: 1) Theory; 2) Practice; 3) Education; 4) Notable historic figures; 5) Contemporary voices.

    Our Blog

    Sharp and Pointed features new writing by many of our authors—opinion pieces on politics and religion, science fiction reviews, cartoons, quotations, tips on writing, and much more.

    Contact Info

    P.O. Box 1731
    Tucson, AZ 85702-1731

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