Articles tagged "American History"

Kirkus Best Books of 2017 – Nonfiction

Kirkus Reviews announced their Best of 2017 Nonfiction lists which include 13 Macmillan titles:

Best Nonfiction (full list)
INCENDIARY: The Psychiatrist, the Mad Bomber, and the Invention of Criminal Profiling by Michael Cannell
FALLEN GLORY: The Lives and Deaths of History’s Greatest Buildings by James Crawford
FREUD: The Making of an Illusion by Frederick Crews
TEARS WE CANNOT STOP: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.
UNWARRANTED: Policing Without Permission by Barry Friedman
BORDER: A Journey to the Edge of Europe by Kapka Kassabova
YOU SAY TO BRICK: The Life of Louis Kahn by Wendy Lesser
ADMISSIONS: Life as a Brain Surgeon by Henry Marsh
FEAR CITY: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics by Kim Phillips-Fein
THE SONGS WE KNOW BEST: John Ashbery’s Early Life by Karin Roffman
LIFE IN CODE: A Personal History of Technology by Ellen Ullman
JANE AUSTEN AT HOME: A Biography by Lucy Worsley

Best American History Books of 2017 (full list)
FEAR CITY: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics by Kim Phillips-Fein
INCENDIARY: The Psychiatrist, the Mad Bomber, and the Invention of Criminal Profiling by Michael Cannell

Best Current Affairs/Politics Books of 2017 (full list)
TEARS WE CANNOT STOP: A Sermon to White America by Michael Eric Dyson
LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.
UNWARRANTED: Policing Without Permission by Barry Friedman

Best Biographies of 2017 (full list)
FREUD: The Making of an Illusion by Frederick Crews
THE SONGS WE KNOW BEST: John Ashbery’s Early Life by Karin Roffman
JANE AUSTEN AT HOME: A Biography by Lucy Worsley
YOU SAY TO BRICK: The Life of Louis Kahn by Wendy Lesser

Best Memoirs of 2017 (full list)
ADMISSIONS: Life as a Brain Surgeon by Henry Marsh
LIFE IN CODE: A Personal History of Technology by Ellen Ullman readmoreremove

NYTBR’s 10 Best Books of 2017 & Editor’s Picks

HOORAY! Two nonfiction titles made the New York Times Book Review‘s “10 Best Books of 2017” list and five more (plus two honorable mentions) are New York Times Critics’ Top Books of 2017!

LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman Jr.
A former public defender in Washington, Forman has written a masterly account of how a generation of black officials, beginning in the 1970s, wrestled with recurring crises of violence and drug use in the nation’s capital. What started out as an effort to assert the value of black lives turned into an embrace of tough-on-crime policies — with devastating consequences for the very communities those officials had promised to represent. Forman argues that dismantling the American system of mass incarceration will require a new understanding of justice, one that emphasizes accountability instead of vengeance.

PRAIRIE FIRES: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser
Fraser’s biography of the author of “Little House on the Prairie” and other beloved books about her childhood during the era of westward migration captures the details of a life — and an improbable, iconic literary career — that has been expertly veiled by fiction. Exhaustively researched and passionately written, this book refreshes and revitalizes our understanding of Western American history, giving space to the stories of Native Americans displaced from the tribal lands by white settlers like the Ingalls family as well as to the travails of homesteaders, farmers and everyone else who rushed to the West to extract its often elusive riches. Ending with a savvy analysis of the 20th-century turn toward right-wing politics taken by Wilder and her daughter, Rose Wilder Lane, Fraser offers a remarkably wide-angle view of how national myths are shaped.

Dwight Garner

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November 2017 Nonfiction

November brings a bounty of excellent new nonfiction to your library’s shelves!

PROMISE ME, DAD: A Year of Hope, Hardship, and Purpose by Joe Biden
The vice president pens a deeply moving memoir about the most challenging professional and personal year in which he lost his son to brain cancer. “The book is a backstage drama, honest, raw and rich in detail. People who have lost someone will genuinely take comfort from what he has to say….” — New York Times

PRAIRIE FIRES: The American Dreams of Laura Ingalls Wilder by Caroline Fraser
A November 2017 LibraryReads pick & New York Times Notable Book of 2017! “The sesquicentennial observance of the birth of the author of the celebrated Little House books (65 million copies sold in 45 languages) has been the catalyst for the publication of a spate of books, now including this magisterial biography, which surely must be called definitive. Richly documented…. But it is its marriage of biography and history—the latter providing such a rich context for the life—that is one of the great strengths of this indispensable book, an unforgettable American story.” — Booklist, starred review

THE WINE LOVER’S DAUGHTER: A Memoir by Anne Fadiman
A Library Journal Best Book of 2017 and a November 2017 Indie Next pick! With all her characteristic wit and feeling, celebrated essayist Fadiman examines her relationship with her father, Clifton Fadiman, a renowned literary critic, editor, and radio host whose greatest love was wine. “In this crisp, scintillating, amusing, and affecting memoir, Anne incisively and lovingly portrays her brilliant and vital father and brings into fresh focus the dynamic world of twentieth-century books and America’s discovery of wine.” — Booklist, starred review

THE VANITY FAIR DIARIES by Tina Brown
Also available in audio
Tina Brown kept delicious daily diaries throughout her eight spectacular years as editor-in-chief of Vanity Fair. Today they provide an incendiary portrait of the flash and dash and power brokering of the Excessive Eighties in New York and Hollywood. “High and low, perceptive and prescient (in 1987, she speculated that the American public won’t be able to resist the crassness of Donald Trump), this is a wildly entertaining, essential look at print journalism before the fall.” — Booklist, starred & signature review

SECRECY WORLD: Inside the Panama Papers Investigation of Illicit Money Networks and the Global Elite by Jake Bernstein
“Two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Bernstein, a reporter with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, recounts the story that the millions of documents leaked from a Panamanian law firm tell about how corporations and wealthy individuals hide their money in offshore accounts. …Bernstein does first-rate work in providing a map to a scandal that has yet to unfold completely.” — Kirkus Reviews, starred review readmoreremove

New Nonfiction – April 2017

Biographies, histories, manifestos and more! Take a look at the new nonfiction books perfect for your patrons this April:

FEAR CITY: New York’s Fiscal Crisis and the Rise of Austerity Politics by Kim Phillips-Fein
Two starred reviews! “Phillips-Fein, professor of history at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study, makes municipal bonds exciting in this painstakingly researched revisionist account of the 1970s fiscal crisis that shook New York to its core. The book should be required reading for all those interested in the past, present, and future of democratic politics.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

LOCKING UP OUR OWN: Crime and Punishment in Black America by James Forman, Jr.
One of Publishers Weekly‘s Most Anticipated Books of Spring 2017! Yale legal scholar and former public defender James Forman Jr. provides an original and consequential argument about race, crime, and the law, weighing the tragic role that some African Americans themselves play in escalating the war on crime. “The book achieves genuine immediacy, due not only to the topical subject, but also to Forman’s personal experiences within the legal system. Possibly controversial, undoubtedly argumentative, Forman’s survey offers a refreshing breath of fresh air on the crisis in American policing.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

CLIMATE OF HOPE: How Cities, Businesses, and Citizens Can Save the Planet by Michael Bloomberg & Carl Pope
From NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg and former head of the Sierra Club Carl Pope comes a manifesto on how the benefits of taking action on climate change are concrete, immediate, and immense. “Upbeat, pragmatic, eloquent, and supremely well-informed, Bloomberg and Pope present striking statistics, cogently describe diverse examples of energy reforms and innovations across the U.S. and around the world, and make clear on both personal and social levels why a low-carbon future is possible, necessary, and of great benefit to everyone.” — Booklist, starred review

MANDERLEY FOREVER: A Biography of Daphne du Maurier by Tatiana de Rosnay
The nonfiction debut from beloved international sensation and #1 New York Times bestselling author of SARAH’S KEY: her biography of novelist Daphne du Maurier. “…this outstanding biography will attract du Maurier devotees of all ages.” — Library Journal, starred review

A COLORFUL WAY OF LIVING: How to Be More, Create More, Do More the Vera Bradley Way by Barbara Bradley Baekgaard
From the co-founder of the Vera Bradley empire, an inspirational and practical book that shows women how to reinvent their lives and awaken their full potential, at any age. “This empowering offering is replete with practical strategies for leading a fulfilled life. Baekgaard’s optimistic take on life and values-based leadership style will inspire readers, particularly those already smitten with her company’s colorful goods.” — Publishers Weekly

MY MOTHER’S KITCHEN: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, and the Meaning of Life by Peter Gethers
A funny, moving memoir about a son’s discovery that his mother has a genius for understanding the intimate connections between cooking, people and love. “A well-written and engaging memoir, particularly for foodies. Also a great primer on second acts and living (and dying) well.” — Library Journal readmoreremove

Nonfiction All-Stars

We’re seeing lots of stars for these terrific nonfiction titles:

THE NOVEL OF THE CENTURY: The Extraordinary Adventure of Les Misérables by David Bellos — 3 stars!
“A renowned French translator explores the life and legacy of Les Misérables. Anyone who loves Hugo, France, and the French language will revel in this delightful book that explains all the intimacies of 19th-century French life.”
Kirkus Reviews, starred review

“The story of how Victor Hugo’s classic novel came to life is a challenging, complex, and utterly engrossing epic all its own.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“The astonishing story of a story.” — Booklist, starred review

INFERNO: A Doctor’s Ebola Story by Steven Hatch, M.D. — 3 stars!
“Hatch, a physician and assistant professor of medicine at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, rivetingly recounts his work in an Ebola treatment unit in Liberia at the height of the deadly West African outbreak in 2014–2015. Hatch’s chronicle is a compassionate, clear-eyed, and courageous account of how compassionate medical care proves a formidable force against the ravages of Ebola.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“…an outstandingly well-written, page-turning memoir…nothing short of a literary miracle. This is a masterful work that deserves sharp notice—truly, a game changer that should share a shelf with the works of Philip Gourevitch and Adam Hochschild.” — Booklist, starred review

“Hatch’s writing is elegant, and at times deeply moving as he shares the pathos of his patients, the staff of the treatment unit, and his own hopes and frustrations. Readers who are interested in global health, medical education, and biographies in general will be moved by this account for its humanity, honesty, and lucid writing.”
Library Journal, starred review

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“The Library of Congress Goes to War” in AMERICAN TREASURES (+ a Giveaway!)

In AMERICAN TREASURES: The Secret Efforts to Save the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Gettysburg Address, Stephen Puleo tells the dramatic, never-before-told history of America’s efforts to protect the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and the Gettysburg Address, plus the key role played by Librarian of Congress Archibald MacLeish during WWII.

Stephen Puleo has a message for you, but first, we’re giving away finished copies to the first 5 librarians to email Library@MacmillanUSA.com from your professional/library-issued e-mail address (subject: American Treasures). Make sure to include your library’s mailing address. Good luck!

UPDATE 8/31/16: This giveaway is now closed and the winners have been notified.

Praise for AMERICAN TREASURES:

An engrossing account of the creation, consecration, and conservation of the documents that defined American democracy. Readers will take away a new appreciation for the vision and savvy of government officials in finding ways to insure such treasures would survive.” — Library Journal

“A solid retelling of an inspiring story.” — Kirkus Reviews

“This unique, easily digestible, well-researched saga is ideal for general readers.” Booklist

“Stephen Puleo once again educates, enlightens, and entertains us, this time through the history of the most important documents of our democracy. A tour de force based on exhaustive research into both primary and secondary sources, he tells the miraculous stories of the survival of the most precious evidence of our freedom thanks to, until now, the unsung heroes and heroines of our past.” — David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, National Archives, Washington D.C.

And now, a message from author Stephen Puleo…

Dear Librarian,
First, I want to say what a privilege it has been to work with so many wonderful librarians while researching my books over the years. I have spent a large part of my author life seeking help from librarians and I’m always amazed and impressed with the thoroughness, professionalism, and cheerfulness with which they approach their work. I owe librarians a debt of gratitude.

I’m writing today to let you know that my sixth book, AMERICAN TREASURES: The Secret Efforts to Save the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Gettysburg Address, will be published this fall by St. Martin’s Press – and I’m very excited about it. For the first time, the book tells the full story of the unprecedented effort to preserve the documentary history of American democracy, focusing on the nation’s “crown jewels” – our most important and priceless documents. readmoreremove

Graphic Novels for the Classroom & School Libraries!

This first book in the Great American Documents series (GREAT AMERICAN DOCUMENTS, Volume 1: 1620-1830 by Ruth Ashby and illustrated by Ernie Colón) tells the history of America through twenty of the major speeches, laws, proclamations, court decisions, and essays that shaped it between 1620 and 1830. 

It's already received two starred reviews! 

“[Ashby and Colón] breathe accessible and cogent life into the written documents that formed U.S. policy, beginning with the Mayflower Compact (1620) and ending with the Indian Removal Act (1830)... Colón uses well-designed, full-color panel layouts to eloquently blend charts and other informative graphics with straightforward images of events, clothing, and customs as well as clear, concise metaphors, all with an eye toward promoting a solid understanding of the basic facts and their impact... School libraries would do well to include this engaging volume in their history collections.” — Booklist, starred review

“Using notable treatises, pamphlets, laws, proclamations, and other documents, [The Great American Documents]—which begins with the Mayflower Compact and ends with the Monroe Doctrine and the Indian Removal Act—weaves together nearly two dozen vignettes with clarity and synthesis. Most remarkably, it covers the culture and context of each time period with a balanced truthfulness... For those who aren’t just curious about history but who really want to understand it, this is an exemplary volume.” — Publishers Weekly, starred review

“The cartoon approach helps refresh history and make it come alive. A good primer for students and a refresher course for their parents.” — Kirkus Reviews

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