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NON-FICTION TITLES OF PARTICULAR INTEREST
Publication Date: 2021-12-07
Married at a young age to an older man, neither he nor she doubted that he would predecease her; but she discovers that there is no preparing for the loss a beloved. Their marriage was a passionate 35 year love affair, as if the odds against its longevity engendered a rare intensity. She discovers that love has no boundaries, grief is not eternal and her husband's motto - Life is a love story - is so very true. Ascher writes passionately about her unlikely marriage, her husband's illness and death and her ensuing sorrow. A witness to the insanity that grief visits upon its victims with a seeming determination to destroy, she gazes straight into the eye of grief and does not blink. In time she moves beyond that grief - her voyage out. Ghosting is, by turns, moving and funny, tender and brutal.
The Impossible Art by
Publication Date: 2021-12-07
From its beginning, opera has been an impossible art. Opera's greatest artists have striven to fuse multiple art forms--music, drama, poetry, dance--into a unified synesthetic experience. The composer Matthew Aucoin, a rising star of the opera world, posits that it is this impossibility that gives opera its exceptional power and serves as its lifeblood. The virtuosity required of its performers, the bizarre and often spectacular nature of its stage productions, the creation of a whole world whose basic fabric is music--opera assumes its true form when it pursues impossible goals. The Impossible Art is a passionate defense of what is best about opera, a love letter to the form, written in the midst of a global pandemic during which operatic performance was (literally) impossible. Aucoin writes of the rare works--ranging from classics by Mozart and Verdi to contemporary offerings of Thomas Adès and Chaya Czernowin--that capture something essential about human experience. He illuminates the symbiotic relationship between composers and librettists, between opera's greatest figures and those of literature. The Impossible Art opens the theater door and invites the reader into this extraordinary world.
The Sweet Spot by
Publication Date: 2021-11-02
Why do we so often seek out physical pain and emotional turmoil? We go to movies that make us cry, or scream, or gag. We poke at sores, eat spicy foods, immerse ourselves in hot baths, run marathons. Some of us even seek out pain and humiliation in sexual role-play. Where do these seemingly perverse appetites come from? Drawing on groundbreaking findings from psychology and brain science, The Sweet Spot shows how the right kind of suffering sets the stage for enhanced pleasure. Pain can distract us from our anxieties and help us transcend the self. Choosing to suffer can serve social goals; it can display how tough we are or, conversely, can function as a cry for help. Feelings of fear and sadness are part of the pleasure of immersing ourselves in play and fantasy and can provide certain moral satisfactions. And effort, struggle, and difficulty can, in the right contexts, lead to the joys of mastery and flow. But suffering plays a deeper role as well. We are not natural hedonists--a good life involves more than pleasure. People seek lives of meaning and significance; we aspire to rich relationships and satisfying pursuits, and this requires some amount of struggle, anxiety, and loss. Paul Bloom shows how a life without chosen suffering would be empty--and worse than that boring.
Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube by
Publication Date: 2016-07-05
By the time Blair Braverman was eighteen, she had left her home in California, moved to arctic Norway to learn to drive sled dogs, and found work as a tour guide on a glacier in Alaska. Determined to carve out a life as a "tough girl" and she slowly developed the strength and resilience the landscape demanded of her. By turns funny and sobering, bold and tender, Welcome to the Goddamn Ice Cube brilliantly recounts Braverman's adventures in Norway and Alaska. Settling into her new surroundings, Braverman was often terrified that she would lose control of her dog team and crash her sled, or be attacked by a polar bear, or get lost on the tundra. Above all, she worried that, unlike the other, gutsier people alongside her, she wasn't cut out for life on the frontier. But no matter how out of place she felt, one thing was clear: she was hooked on the North. On the brink of adulthood, Braverman was determined to prove that her fears did not define her--and so she resolved to embrace the wilderness and make it her own.
Civil Rights Queen by
Publication Date: 2022-01-25
Born to an aspirational blue-collar family during the Great Depression, Constance Baker Motley was expected to find herself a good career as a hair dresser. Instead, she became the first black woman to argue a case in front of the Supreme Court, the first of ten she would eventually argue. The only black woman member in the legal team at the NAACP's Inc. Fund at the time, she defended Martin Luther King in Birmingham, helped to argue in Brown vs. The Board of Education, and played a critical role in vanquishing Jim Crow laws throughout the South. She was the first black woman elected to the state Senate in New York, the first woman elected Manhattan Borough President, and the first black woman appointed to the federal judiciary. Esteemed Civil Rights and legal historian and dean of the Harvard Radcliffe Institute, Tomiko Brown-Nagin brings Motley to life in these pages, and compels us to ponder some of our most timeless and urgent questions--how do the historically marginalized access the corridors of power? What is the price of the ticket? How does access to power shape individuals committed to social justice?
Publication Date: 2022-01-18
Bernardine Evaristo's memoir of her own life and writing, and her manifesto on unstoppability, creativity, and activism; a vibrant account of her life and career as she rebelled against the mainstream and fought over several decades to bring her creative work into the world. With her characteristic humor, Evaristo describes her childhood as one of eight siblings, with a Nigerian father and white Catholic mother, tells the story of how she helped set up Britain's first Black women's theatre company, and recounts her determination to write books that were absent in the literary world around her. She provides a hugely powerful perspective to contemporary conversations around race, class, feminism, sexuality, and aging. She reminds us of how far we have come, and how far we still have to go. Both unconventional memoir and inspirational text, Manifesto serves as a unique reminder to us all to persist in doing work we believe in, even when we might feel overlooked or discounted. Evaristo shows us how we too can follow in her footsteps, from first vision, to insistent perseverance, to eventual triumph.
The Urge by
Publication Date: 2022-01-25
Even after a decades-long opioid overdose crisis, intense controversy still rages over the fundamental nature of addiction and the best way to treat it. With uncommon empathy and erudition, Carl Erik Fisher draws on his own experience as a clinician, researcher, and alcoholic in recovery as he traces its history. As a psychiatrist-in-training, Fisher was soon face-to-face with his own addiction crisis. Desperate to make sense of the condition that had plagued his family for generations, he turned to the history of addiction, and learned that it was a centuries-old story: humans have struggled to define, treat, and control addictive behavior throughout recorded history, including well before the advent of modern science and medicine. The Urge probes not only medicine and science but also literature, religion, philosophy, and public policy. Fisher introduces us to those who have endeavored to address this complex condition: physicians and politicians, activists and artists, researchers and writers, and the legions of people who have struggled with their own addictions. He also examines the treatments and strategies that have produced hope and relief for those afflicted. Only by reckoning with our history of addiction, he argues, can we light the way forward for those whose lives remain threatened by its hold.
Publication Date: 2021-12-07
"Wherever you look in the period between 1925 and 1941," Robert Gottlieb writes in Garbo, "Greta Garbo is in people's minds, hearts, and dreams." Strikingly glamorous and famously inscrutable, she managed, in this short time, to infiltrate the world's subconscious. She was a phenomenon, a sphinx, a myth, the most beautiful woman in the world, but she was also a Swedish peasant girl, uneducated, naïve, and always on her guard. Gottlieb, an acclaimed critic and editor, offers a vivid and thorough retelling of her life, beginning in the slums of Stockholm and proceeding through her struggle to elude the attention of the world. He takes us through the films themselves, from her several European features to M-G-M's early melodramas to the artistic heights of Camille and Ninotchka. And he sketches the life she led as a very wealthy woman in New York--"a hermit about town"--and the life she led in Europe among the Rothschilds and men like Onassis and Churchill. In addition Gottlieb offers "A Garbo Reader," which brings together a remarkable assembly of glimpses of Garbo from other people's memoirs and interviews. Most extraordinary of all are the pictures--more than 250 of them, all reproduced here in superb duotone.
This Boy We Made by
Publication Date: 2022-01-11
A Black mother bumps up against the limits of everything she thought she believed-about science and medicine, about motherhood, and about her faith-in search of the truth about her son. One morning, Tophs, Taylor Harris's round-cheeked, lively twenty-two-month-old, wakes up listless, only lifting his head to gulp down water. She rushes Tophs to the doctor, and at the hospital, her maternal instincts are confirmed- something is wrong with her boy, and Taylor's life will never be the same. With every question the doctors answer about Tophs's increasingly troubling symptoms, more arise, and Taylor dives into the search for a diagnosis. She spends countless hours trying to navigate health and education systems that can be hostile to Black mothers and children; at night she googles, prays, and interrogates her every action. Some days, her sweet, charismatic boy seems just fine; others, he struggles to answer simple questions. A long-awaited appointment with a geneticist ultimately reveals nothing about what's causing Tophs's drops in blood sugar, his processing delays-but it does reveal something unexpected about Taylor's own health. What if her son's challenges have saved her life?
You Don't Know Us Negroes and Other Essays by
Publication Date: 2022-01-18
The quintessential gathering of provocative essays from one of the world's most celebrated writers, Zora Neale Hurston. Spanning more than three decades and penned during the backdrop of the birth of the Harlem Renaissance, Montgomery bus boycott, desegregation of the military, and school integration, Hurston's writing articulates the beauty and authenticity of Black life as only she could. Collectively, these essays showcase the roles enslavement and Jim Crow have played in intensifying Black people's inner lives and culture rather than destroying it. She argues that in the process of surviving, Black people re-interpreted every aspect of American culture--"modif[ying] the language, mode of food preparation, practice of medicine, and most certainly religion." White supremacy prevents the world from seeing or completely recognizing Black people in their full humanity and Hurston made it her job to lift the veil and reveal the heart and soul of the race. These pages reflect Hurston as the controversial figure she was--someone who stated that feminism is a mirage and that the integration of schools did not necessarily improve the education of Black students. Also covered is the sensational trial of Ruby McCollum, a wealthy Black woman convicted in 1952 for killing her lover, a white doctor.
Annie Leibovitz: Wonderland by
Publication Date: 2021-11-17
Legendary photographer Annie Leibovitz's surprising - and surprised - account of her encounters with fashion.Looking back at my work, I see that fashion has always been there, Annie Leibovitz observes in the preface to her new book, Wonderland. Fashion plays a part in the scheme of everything, but photography always comes first for me. The photograph is the most important part. And photography is so big that it can encompass journalism, portraiture, reportage, family photographs, fashion. . . . My work for Vogue fueled the fire for a kind of photography that I might not otherwise have explored.
William Morris by
Publication Date: 2021-10-05
A pioneer of the Arts & Crafts Movement, William Morris (1834-1896) is one of the most influential designers of all time. Morris turned the tide of Victorian England against an increasingly industrialized manufacturing process toward a rediscovered respect for the skill of the maker. Morris's whole approach still resonates today, and his designs are popular and much admired. Published to mark the 125th anniversary of Morris's death, this book includes contributions from a wide range of Morris experts, with chapters on painting, church decoration and stained glass, interior decoration, furniture, tiles and tableware, wallpaper, textiles, calligraphy, and publishing. Additional materials include a contextualized chronology of Morris's life and a list of public collections around the world where examples of Morris's work may be seen today.
All That She Carried by
Publication Date: 2021-06-08
In 1850s South Carolina, an enslaved woman named Rose faced a crisis, the imminent sale of her daughter Ashley. Thinking quickly, she packed a cotton bag with a few precious items as a token of love and to try to ensure Ashley's survival. Soon after, the nine-year-old girl was separated from her mother and sold. Decades later, Ashley's granddaughter Ruth embroidered this family history on the bag in spare yet haunting language: that "It be filled with my Love always." Ruth's sewn words evoke a sweeping family story of loss and of love passed down through generations. Historian Tiya Miles carefully unearths these women's faint presence in archival records to follow the paths of their lives to write a singular and revelatory history of the experience of slavery. The search to uncover this history is part of the story itself. For where the historical record falls short of capturing Rose's, Ashley's, and Ruth's full lives, Miles turns to objects and to art as equally important sources. The contents of Ashley's sack--a tattered dress, handfuls of pecans, a braid of hair, "my Love always"--are eloquent evidence of the lives these women lived. Miles metaphorically unpacks the bag, deepening its emotional resonance and exploring the meanings and significance of everything it contained.
The Baseball 100 by
Publication Date: 2021-09-28
A magnum opus from acclaimed baseball writer Joe Posnanski, The Baseball 100 is an audacious, singular, and masterly book that took a lifetime to write, a one-of-a-kind work by award-winning sportswriter and lifelong student of the game; tells the story of the sport through the remarkable lives of its 100 greatest players. Baseball's legends come alive in these pages, which are not merely rankings but vibrant profiles of the game's all-time greats. Posnanski dives into the biographies of iconic Hall of Famers, unfairly forgotten All-Stars, talents of today, and more. He doesn't rely just on records and statistics--he lovingly retraces players' origins, illuminates their characters, and places their accomplishments in the context of baseball's past and present. The epic and often emotional reading experience mirrors Posnanski's personal odyssey to capture the history and glory of baseball like no one else, fueled by his boundless love for the sport. Engrossing, surprising, and heartfelt, The Baseball 100 is a magisterial tribute to the game of baseball and the stars who have played it.
Publication Date: 2022-01-04
Congressman Raskin discusses this unimaginable convergence of personal and public trauma. Going inside Congress on January 6, he recounts the horror of that day, a day that he and other Democrats had spent months preparing for - that they would encounter an attempted electoral coup--not against a President but for one. And yet, on January 6, he faced the one thing he had failed to anticipate: mass political violence designed to block Biden's election. With an inside account of leading the team prosecuting President Trump in the Senate, Congressman Raskin shares never before told stories of just how close we came to losing our democracy and lays out the methodical prosecution that convinced Democrats and Republicans alike of Trump's responsibility for inciting insurrectionary violence against our government. Through it all, he reckons with the loss of son. At turns, a moving story of a father coping with his pain and a revealing examination of holding President Trump accountable, this book is a vital reminder of the ongoing struggle for the soul of American democracy and the perseverance of our Constitution.
Publication Date: 2022-01-11
82 World Cup wins. 20 World Cup titles. 3 Olympic medals. 7 World Championship Medals. A fixture in the American sports landscape for almost twenty years, Lindsey Vonn is a legend. With a career that spanned a transformation in how America recognizes and celebrates female athletes, Vonn--who retired in 2019 as the most decorated American skier of all time--was in the vanguard of that change, helping blaze a trail for other world-class female athletes and reimagining what it meant to pursue speed at all costs. In Rise, Vonn shares her incredible journey for the first time, going behind the scenes of a badass life built around resilience and risk-taking. One of the most aggressive skiers ever, Vonn offers a fascinating glimpse into the relentless pursuit of her limits, a pursuit so focused on one-upping herself that she pushed her body past its breaking point as she achieved greatness. While this iconic grit and perseverance helped her battle a catalog of injuries, these injuries came with a cost--physical, of course, but also mental. Vonn opens up about her decades-long depression and struggles with self-confidence, discussing candidly how her mental health challenges influenced her career without defining her.