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First Friends: The Powerful, Unsung (and Unelected) People Who Shaped Our Presidents

First Friends: The Powerful, Unsung (and Unelected) People Who Shaped Our Presidents
$30.00
AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER!
A USA TODAY "BEST BOOKS OF 2021" PICK!

In the bestselling tradition of The Presidents Club and Presidential Courage, White House history as told through the stories of the best friends and closest confidants of American presidents.

Here are the riveting histories of myriad presidential friendships, among them:

  • Abraham Lincoln and Joshua Speed: They shared a bed for four years during which Speed saved his friend from a crippling depression. Two decades later the friends worked together to save the Union.
  • Harry Truman and Eddie Jacobson: When Truman wavered on whether to recognize the state of Israel in 1948, his lifelong friend and former business partner intervened at just the right moment with just the right words to steer the president's decision.
  • Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Daisy Suckley: Unassuming and overlooked during her lifetime, Daisy Suckley was in reality FDR's most trusted, constant confidant, the respite for a lonely and overworked President navigating the Great Depression and World War II
  • John Kennedy and David Ormsby-Gore: They met as young men in pre-war London and began a conversation over the meaning of leadership. A generation later the Cuban Missile Crisis would put their ideas to test as Ormsby-Gore became the president's unofficial, but most valued foreign policy advisor.
  • These and other friendships--including Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, Franklin Pierce and Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Bill Clinton and Vernon Jordan--populate this fresh and provocative exploration of a series of seminal presidential friendships.

    Publishing history teems with books by and about Presidents, First Ladies, First Pets, and even First Chefs. Now former Clinton aide Gary Ginsberg breaks new literary ground on Pennsylvania Avenue and provides fresh insights into the lives of the men who held the most powerful political office in the world by looking at the friends on whom they relied.

    First Friends is an engaging, serendipitous look into the lives of Commanders-in-Chief and how their presidencies were shaped by those they held most dear.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781538702925
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    First Kennedys: The Humble Roots of an American Dynasty

    First Kennedys: The Humble Roots of an American Dynasty
    $28.00

    "Here is that rare thing: an untold chapter in the Kennedy saga. . .Compelling and illuminating."--Jon Meacham

    Based on genealogical breakthroughs and previously unreleased records, this is the first book to explore the inspiring story of the poor Irish refugee couple who escaped famine; created a life together in a city hostile to Irish, immigrants, and Catholics; and launched the Kennedy dynasty in America.

    Their Irish ancestry was a hallmark of the Kennedys' initial political profile, as JFK leveraged his working-class roots to connect with blue-collar voters. Today, we remember this iconic American family as the vanguard of wealth, power, and style rather than as the descendants of poor immigrants. Here at last, we meet the first American Kennedys, Patrick and Bridget, who arrived as many thousands of others did following the Great Famine--penniless and hungry. Less than a decade after their marriage in Boston, Patrick's sudden death left Bridget to raise their children single-handedly. Her rise from housemaid to shop owner in the face of rampant poverty and discrimination kept her family intact, allowing her only son P.J. to become a successful saloon owner and businessman. P.J. went on to become the first American Kennedy elected to public office--the first of many.

    Written by the grandson of an Irish immigrant couple and based on first-ever access to P.J. Kennedy's private papers, The First Kennedys is a story of sacrifice and survival, resistance and reinvention: an American story.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780358437697
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    Fish Out of Water

    Fish Out of Water
    $32.99
    What Happens When One of America's Most Admired Biographers Writes His Own Biography?

    For Eric Metaxas, the answer is Fish Out of Water: A Search for the Meaning of Life--a poetic and sometimes hilarious memoir of his early years, in which the Queens-born son of Greek and German immigrants struggles to make sense of a world in which he never quite seems to fit.

    Renowned for his biographies of William Wilberforce, Dietrich Bonhoeffer, and Martin Luther, Metaxas is the author of five New York Times bestsellers, the witty host of the acclaimed Socrates in the City conversation series, and a nationally syndicated radio personality. But here he reveals a personal story few have heard, taking us from his mostly happy childhood--and riotous triumphs at Yale--to the nightmare of drifting toward a dark abyss of meaninglessness from which he barely escapes.

    Along the way he introduces us to an unforgettable troupe of picaresque characters who join this quintessentially first-generation American boy in what is both bildungsroman and odyssey--and which underscores just how funny, serious, happy, sad, and ultimately meaningful life can be.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781684511723
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    Five Days Gone

    Five Days Gone
    $18.00
    NOMINATED FOR THE 2019 NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD FOR AUTOBIOGRAPHY
    ONE OF NPR'S BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR
    SHORTLISTED FOR THE BAILLIE GIFFORD PRIZE FOR NONFICTION
    SHORTLISTED FOR THE RATHBONES FOLIO PRIZE
    LONGLISTED FOR THE RSL ONDAATJE PRIZE

    The acclaimed New York Times bestselling author of The Vanishing Velazquez shares a riveting true story "with as many twists and turns as any mystery" (Los Angeles Times) describing her mother's mysterious kidnapping as a toddler in a small English coastal village--"an incredible and incredibly unusual book about family secrets" (Nick Hornby, The Believer).

    In the fall of 1929, when Laura Cumming's mother was three years old, she was kidnapped from a beach on the Lincolnshire coast of England. There were no screams when she was taken, suggesting the culprit was someone familiar to her, and when she turned up again in a nearby village several days later, she was happy and in perfect health. No one was ever accused of a crime. The incident quickly faded from her memory, and her parents never discussed it. To the contrary, they deliberately hid it from her, and she did not learn of it for half a century.

    This was not the only secret her parents kept from her. For many years, while raising her in draconian isolation and protectiveness, they also hid the fact that she'd been adopted, and that shortly after the kidnapping, her name was changed from Grace to Betty.

    "Both page-turning and richly absorbing" (The Providence Journal), On Chapel Sands (originally titled Five Days Gone) unspools the tale of Cumming's mother's life and unravels the multiple mysteries at its core. Using photographs from the time, historical documents, and works of art, Cumming investigates this case of stolen identity w​ith the toolset of a detective and the unique intimacy of a daughter trying to understand her family's past and its legacies. "Brilliant" (The Guardian) and "a story told with such depth of feeling and observation and such lyrical writing I couldn't put it down" (Anna Quindlen), On Chapel Sands is a masterful blend of memoir and history, an extraordinary personal narrative unlike any other.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781501198724
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    Floating in a Most Peculiar Way: A Memoir

    Floating in a Most Peculiar Way: A Memoir
    $27.00

    The astonishing journey of a bright, utterly displaced boy, from the short-lived African nation of Biafra, to Jamaica, to the harshest streets of Los Angeles--a searing memoir that adds fascinating depth to the coming-to-America story

    The first time Chude-Sokei realizes that he is "first son of the first son" of a renowned leader of the bygone African nation is in Uncle Daddy and Big Auntie's strict religious household in Jamaica, where he lives with other abandoned children. A visiting African has just fallen to his knees to shake him by the shoulders: "Is this the boy? Is this him?"

    Chude-Sokei's immersion in the politics of race and belonging across the landscape of the African diaspora takes a turn when his traumatized mother, who has her own extraordinary history as the onetime "Jackie O of Biafra," finally sends for him to come live with her. In Inglewood, Los Angeles, on the eve of gangsta rap and the LA riots, it's as if he's fallen to Earth. In this world, anything alien--definitely Chude-Sokei's secret obsession with science fiction and David Bowie--is a danger, and his yearning to become a Black American gets deeply, sometimes absurdly, complicated. Ultimately, it is a boisterous pan-African family of honorary aunts, uncles, and cousins that becomes his secret society, teaching him the redemptive skill of navigating not just Blackness, but Blacknesses, in his America.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781328841582
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    Free: A Child and a Country at the End of History

    Free: A Child and a Country at the End of History
    $27.95

    For precocious 11-year-old Lea Ypi, Albania's Soviet-style socialism held the promise of a preordained future, a guarantee of security among enthusiastic comrades. That is, until she found herself clinging to a stone statue of Joseph Stalin, newly beheaded by student protests.

    Communism had failed to deliver the promised utopia. One's "biography"--class status and other associations long in the past--put strict boundaries around one's individual future. When Lea's parents spoke of relatives going to "university" or "graduating," they were speaking of grave secrets Lea struggled to unveil. And when the early '90s saw Albania and other Balkan countries exuberantly begin a transition to the "free market," Western ideals of freedom delivered chaos: a dystopia of pyramid schemes, organized crime, and sex trafficking.

    With her elegant, intellectual, French-speaking grandmother; her radical-chic father; and her staunchly anti-socialist, Thatcherite mother to guide her through these disorienting times, Lea had a political education of the most colorful sort--here recounted with outstanding literary talent. Now one of the world's most dynamic young political thinkers and a prominent leftist voice in the United Kingdom, Lea offers a fresh and invigorating perspective on the relation between the personal and the political, between values and identity, posing urgent questions about the cost of freedom.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780393867732
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    Freezing Order: A True Story of Money Laundering, Murder, and Surviving Vladimir Putin's Wrath

    Freezing Order: A True Story of Money Laundering, Murder, and Surviving Vladimir Putin's Wrath
    $28.99
    NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER

    Following his explosive New York Times bestseller Red Notice, Bill Browder returns with another gripping thriller chronicling how he became Vladimir Putin's number one enemy by exposing Putin's campaign to steal and launder hundreds of billions of dollars and kill anyone who stands in his way.

    When Bill Browder's young Russian lawyer, Sergei Magnitsky, was beaten to death in a Moscow jail, Browder made it his life's mission to go after his killers and make sure they faced justice. The first step of that mission was to uncover who was behind the $230 million tax refund scheme that Magnitsky was killed over. As Browder and his team tracked the money as it flowed out of Russia through the Baltics and Cyprus and on to Western Europe and the Americas, they were shocked to discover that Vladimir Putin himself was a beneficiary of the crime.

    As law enforcement agencies began freezing the money, Putin retaliated. He and his cronies set up honey traps, hired process servers to chase Browder through cities, murdered more of his Russian allies, and enlisted some of the top lawyers and politicians in America to bring him down. Putin will stop at nothing to protect his money. As Freezing Order reveals, it was Browder's campaign to expose Putin's corruption that prompted Russia's intervention in the 2016 US presidential election.

    At once a financial caper, an international adventure, and a passionate plea for justice, Freezing Order is a stirring morality tale about how one man can take on one of the most ruthless villains in the world--and win.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781982153281
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    Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing

    Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing
    $29.99

    A MOST ANTICIPATED BOOK BY TIME, THE ASSOCIATED PRESS, GOODREADS, USA TODAY, AND MORE!

    The beloved star of

    Friends takes us behind the scenes of the hit sitcom and his struggles with addiction in this candid, funny, and revelatory memoir that delivers a powerful message of hope and persistence.

    "Hi, my name is Matthew, although you may know me by another name. My friends call me Matty. And I should be dead."

    So begins the riveting story of acclaimed actor Matthew Perry, taking us along on his journey from childhood ambition to fame to addiction and recovery in the aftermath of a life-threatening health scare. Before the frequent hospital visits and stints in rehab, there was five-year-old Matthew, who traveled from Montreal to Los Angeles, shuffling between his separated parents; fourteen-year-old Matthew, who was a nationally ranked tennis star in Canada; twenty-four-year-old Matthew, who nabbed a coveted role as a lead cast member on the talked-about pilot then called Friends Like Us. . . and so much more.

    In an extraordinary story that only he could tell--and in the heartfelt, hilarious, and warmly familiar way only he could tell it--Matthew Perry lays bare the fractured family that raised him (and also left him to his own devices), the desire for recognition that drove him to fame, and the void inside him that could not be filled even by his greatest dreams coming true. But he also details the peace he's found in sobriety and how he feels about the ubiquity of Friends, sharing stories about his castmates and other stars he met along the way. Frank, self-aware, and with his trademark humor, Perry vividly depicts his lifelong battle with addiction and what fueled it despite seemingly having it all.

    Friends, Lovers, and the Big Terrible Thing is an unforgettable memoir that is both intimate and eye-opening--as well as a hand extended to anyone struggling with sobriety. Unflinchingly honest, moving, and uproariously funny, this is the book fans have been waiting for.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781250866448
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    From the Ashes: My Story of Being Indigenous, Homeless, and Finding My Way

    From the Ashes: My Story of Being Indigenous, Homeless, and Finding My Way
    $17.00
    This #1 internationally bestselling and award-winning memoir about overcoming trauma, prejudice, and addiction by a Métis-Cree author as he struggles to find a way back to himself and his Indigenous culture is "an illuminating, inside account of homelessness, a study of survival and freedom" (Amanda Lindhout, bestselling coauthor of A House in the Sky).

    Abandoned by his parents as a toddler, Jesse Thistle and his two brothers were cut off from all they knew when they were placed in the foster care system. Eventually placed with their paternal grandparents, the children often clashed with their tough-love attitude. Worse, the ghost of Jesse's drug-addicted father seemed to haunt the memories of every member of the family.

    Soon, Jesse succumbed to a self-destructive cycle of drug and alcohol addiction and petty crime, resulting in more than a decade living on and off the streets. Facing struggles many of us cannot even imagine, Jesse knew he would die unless he turned his life around. Through sheer perseverance and newfound love, he managed to find his way back into the loving embrace of his Indigenous culture and family.

    Now, in this heart-wrenching and triumphant memoir, Jesse Thistle honestly and fearlessly divulges his painful past, the abuse he endured, and the tragic truth about his parents. An eloquent exploration of the dangerous impact of prejudice and racism, From the Ashes is ultimately a celebration of love and "a story of courage and resilience certain to strike a chord with readers from many backgrounds" (Library Journal).

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781982182946
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    From the Hood to the Holler: A Story of Separate Worlds, Shared Dreams, and the Fight for America's Future

    From the Hood to the Holler: A Story of Separate Worlds, Shared Dreams, and the Fight for America's Future
    $28.00
    Kentucky State Representative Charles Booker tells the improbable story of his journey from one of the poorest neighborhoods in the country to a political career forging new alliances among forgotten communities across the New South and beyond.

    "Charles Booker is a rising leader in our nation, and an inspiration to me and all those who get to know his story and vision."--Senator Cory Booker

    Charles Booker grew up in one of the poorest neighborhoods in Kentucky, living in the largely segregated West End of Louisville. Faith and love were everything in his family, but material comforts were scarce. The electricity was sometimes shut off. His mother often went hungry so her son could eat. Even after he graduated from law school, Booker rationed the insulin he took for diabetes. Determined to build a world in which poverty and racism would not plague future generations, he charted his own course into Kentucky politics, a world dominated by the myth of an urban-rural divide, and controlled by the formidable Republican establishment.

    In this stirring account, Booker unfolds his journey from the heart of Louisville to the deepest reaches of Kentucky's rural landscapes, reflecting the journey America itself must make on the way to a progressive future. Robbed of multiple family members by gun violence, Booker found the roots of a system built to fail him and his neighbors in everything from the hypocrisy of elected officials to the structural racism embedded in the state's budget.

    Yet it wasn't until his unlikely appointment to the Department of Fish and Wildlife Resources that he understood the transformative power of the issues that bound his family with those in rural Appalachia. In coal country, he met citizens who, like those in the West End, suffered from extreme isolation, for whom fresh food and economic stability were scarce, who lacked the resources to overcome their cynicism about change. Through his work as the youngest Black state legislator in Kentucky, Booker built an unprecedented alliance between the hood and the holler. This coalition was the basis for a thrilling grassroots Senate campaign that nearly stunned the nation, putting Senators Mitch McConnell and Rand Paul on notice that the days of business as usual were over.

    From the Hood to the Holler is both a moving coming-of-age story and an urgent political intervention--a much-needed blueprint for how equity and racial justice might transcend partisan divisions in Kentucky, throughout the South, and across America.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780593240342
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    Frontier Follies

    Frontier Follies
    $16.99

    New York Times bestseller

    A down-to-earth, hilarious collection of stories and musings on marriage, motherhood, and country life from the #1 New York Times bestselling authorand star of the Food Network show The Pioneer Woman, Ree Drummond.

    Once upon a time, I lost my marbles and married a sexy, Wrangler-wearing cowboy named Ladd. That single decision would wind up setting the stage for years of rural adventures (and misadventures), and while I can't imagine my life being any different, raising a family in the "idyllic" countryside has not been without a few bumps in the road. (Or were those cow patties? It's hard to tell the difference sometimes.)

    I'm excited to share this crazy collection of true stories from my full-of-energy, hard-to-tame, wonderfully wild (and very weird) frontier family. From the unique challenges of being married to a rancher to the blood, sweat, mud, and tears of raising country kids, I'll pull back the curtain and let you in on some of the sh*t and shenanigans that have really gone on here on Drummond Ranch over the past two-plus decades.

    You'll learn about marital spats, run-ins with wildlife, ER visits, my parenting neuroses, triumphs, tribulations, love, loss . . . and how manure has somehow managed to weave its way through all of it. To keep things up to the minute, you'll also hear about more recent family developments that have tested my sanity and pushed me to the brink. (And pleasantly surprised me, too.)

    This book is both a love letter and a laugh letter, and I hope you get a big kick out of it all: the good, the bad, and the dirty. Mostly, I hope it demonstrates how much I adore this family of mine . . . even if I sometimes have to use rubber snakes to show it.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780062962812
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    Fruit Punch: A Memoir

    Fruit Punch: A Memoir
    $26.99

    An arresting and one-of-a-kind memoir about the alternately exultant and harrowing trip growing up as a Black child desperate to create a clear reality for herself in this country

    Written in a distinctive voice and filled with personality, humor, and pathos, Fruit Punch is a memoir unlike any other, from a one-of-a-kind millennial talent. Growing up in Dallas, Texas, in the nineties and early 2000s, Kendra Allen had a complicated, loving, and intense family life filled with desire and community but also undercurrents of violence and turmoil. "We equate suffering to perseverance and misinterpret the weight of shame," she writes. As she makes her way through a world of obscureness, Kendra finds herself slowly discovering outlets to help navigate growing up and against the expected performance of being a young Black woman in the South--a complex interplay of race, class, and gender that proves to be ever-shifting ground.

    Fruit Punch touches on everything from questions of beauty and how we form concepts of ourselves--as a small rebellion, young Kendra scratched a hole into every pair of stockings she was forced to wear--to what it means to grow up in her great uncle's Southern Baptist church--with rules including "No uncrossed ankles" and "No questions." Inflected by a powerful sense of place and touched by poetry, Fruit Punch is a stunning achievement--a memoir born of love and endurance, fight or flight, and what it means to be a witness, from a blisteringly honest and observant voice.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780063048539
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    Funny Farm

    Funny Farm
    $27.99

    An inspiring and moving memoir of the author's turbulent life with 600 rescue animals.

    Laurie Zaleski never aspired to run an animal rescue; that was her mother Annie's dream. But from girlhood, Laurie was determined to make the dream come true. Thirty years later as a successful businesswoman, she did it, buying a 15-acre farm deep in the Pinelands of South Jersey. She was planning to relocate Annie and her caravan of ragtag rescues--horses and goats, dogs and cats, chickens and pigs--when Annie died, just two weeks before moving day. In her heartbreak, Laurie resolved to make her mother's dream her own. In 2001, she established the Funny Farm Animal Rescue outside Mays Landing, New Jersey. Today, she carries on Annie's mission to save abused and neglected animals.

    Funny Farm is Laurie's story: of promises kept, dreams fulfilled, and animals lost and found. It's the story of Annie McNulty, who fled a nightmarish marriage with few skills, no money and no resources, dragging three kids behind her, and accumulating hundreds of cast-off animals on the way. And lastly, it's the story of the brave, incredible, and adorable animals that were rescued. Although there are some sad parts (as life always is), there are lots of laughs.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781250272836
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    Gambler Wife: A True Story of Love, Risk, and the Woman Who Saved Dostoyevsky

    Gambler Wife: A True Story of Love, Risk, and the Woman Who Saved Dostoyevsky
    $30.00
    FINALIST FOR THE PEN JACQUELINE BOGRAD WELD AWARD FOR BIOGRAPHY

    "Feminism, history, literature, politics--this tale has all of that, and a heroine worthy of her own turn in the spotlight." --Therese Anne Fowler, bestselling author of Z: A Novel of Zelda Fitzgerald

    A revelatory new portrait of the courageous woman who saved Dostoyevsky's life--and became a pioneer in Russian literary history

    In the fall of 1866, a twenty-year-old stenographer named Anna Snitkina applied for a position with a writer she idolized: Fyodor Dostoyevsky. A self-described "girl of the sixties," Snitkina had come of age during Russia's first feminist movement, and Dostoyevsky--a notorious radical turned acclaimed novelist--had impressed the young woman with his enlightened and visionary fiction. Yet in person she found the writer "terribly unhappy, broken, tormented," weakened by epilepsy, and yoked to a ruinous gambling addiction. Alarmed by his condition, Anna became his trusted first reader and confidante, then his wife, and finally his business manager--launching one of literature's most turbulent and fascinating marriages.

    The Gambler Wife offers a fresh and captivating portrait of Anna Dostoyevskaya, who reversed the novelist's freefall and cleared the way for two of the most notable careers in Russian letters--her husband's and her own. Drawing on diaries, letters, and other little-known archival sources, Andrew Kaufman reveals how Anna protected her family from creditors, demanding in-laws, and her greatest romantic rival, through years of penury and exile. We watch as she navigates the writer's self-destructive binges in the casinos of Europe--even hazarding an audacious turn at roulette herself--until his addiction is conquered. And, finally, we watch as Anna frees her husband from predatory contracts by founding her own publishing house, making Anna the first solo female publisher in Russian history.

    The result is a story that challenges ideas of empowerment, sacrifice, and female agency in nineteenth-century Russia--and a welcome new appraisal of an indomitable woman whose legacy has been nearly lost to literary history.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780525537144
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    Gathering Blossoms Under Fire

    Gathering Blossoms Under Fire
    $32.50
    From National Book Award and Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker and edited by critic and writer Valerie Boyd, comes an unprecedented compilation of Walker's fifty years of journals drawing an intimate portrait of her development over five decades as an artist, human rights and women's activist, and intellectual.

    For the first time, the edited journals of Alice Walker are gathered together to reflect the complex, passionate, talented, and acclaimed Pulitzer Prize winner of The Color Purple. She intimately explores her thoughts and feelings as a woman, a writer, an African-American, a wife, a daughter, a mother, a lover, a sister, a friend, a citizen of the world.

    In an unvarnished and singular voice, she explores an astonishing array of events: marching in Mississippi with other foot soldiers of the Civil Rights Movement, led by Martin Luther King, Jr.; her marriage to a Jewish lawyer, defying laws that barred interracial marriage in the 1960s South; an early miscarriage; writing her first novel; the trials and triumphs of the Women's Movement; erotic encounters and enduring relationships; the ancestral visits that led her to write The Color Purple; winning the Pulitzer Prize; being admired and maligned, sometimes in equal measure, for her work and her activism; and burying her mother. A powerful blend of Walker's personal life with political events, this revealing collection offers rare insight into a literary legend.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781476773155
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    Gay Bar

    Gay Bar
    $28.00
    National Book Critics Circle Award Winner

    NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY: The New York Times * NPR * Vogue * Gay Times * Artforum *

    "Gay Bar is an absolute tour de force." -Maggie Nelson

    "Atherton Lin has a five-octave, Mariah Carey-esque range for discussing gay sex." -New York Times Book Review

    As gay bars continue to close at an alarming rate, a writer looks back to find out what's being lost in this indispensable, intimate, and stylish celebration of queer history.

    Strobing lights and dark rooms; throbbing house and drag queens on counters; first kisses, last call: the gay bar has long been a place of solidarity and sexual expression--whatever your scene, whoever you're seeking. But in urban centers around the world, they are closing, a cultural demolition that has Jeremy Atherton Lin wondering: What was the gay bar? How have they shaped him? And could this spell the end of gay identity as we know it?

    In Gay Bar, the author embarks upon a transatlantic tour of the hangouts that marked his life, with each club, pub, and dive revealing itself to be a palimpsest of queer history. In prose as exuberant as a hit of poppers and dazzling as a disco ball, he time-travels from Hollywood nights in the 1970s to a warren of cruising tunnels built beneath London in the 1770s; from chichi bars in the aftermath of AIDS to today's fluid queer spaces; through glory holes, into Crisco-slicked dungeons and down San Francisco alleys. He charts police raids and riots, posing and passing out--and a chance encounter one restless night that would change his life forever.

    The journey that emerges is a stylish and nuanced inquiry into the connection between place and identity--a tale of liberation, but one that invites us to go beyond the simplified Stonewall mythology and enter lesser-known battlefields in the struggle to carve out a territory. Elegiac, randy, and sparkling with wry wit, Gay Bar is at once a serious critical inquiry, a love story and an epic night out to remember.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780316458733
    0

    George V

    George V
    $35.00

    From one of the most beloved and distinguished historians of the British monarchy, here is a lively, intimately detailed biography of a long-overlooked king who reimagined the Crown in the aftermath of World War I and whose marriage to the regal Queen Mary was an epic partnership

    The grandfather of Queen Elizabeth II, King George V reigned over the British Empire from 1910 to 1936, a period of unprecedented international turbulence. Yet no one could deny that as a young man, George seemed uninspired. As his biographer Harold Nicolson famously put it, "he did nothing at all but kill animals and stick in stamps." The contrast between him and his flamboyant, hedonistic, playboy father Edward VII could hardly have been greater.

    However, though it lasted only a quarter-century, George's reign was immensely consequential. He faced a constitutional crisis, the First World War, the fall of thirteen European monarchies and the rise of Bolshevism. The suffragette Emily Davison threw herself under his horse at the Derby, he refused asylum to his cousin the Tsar Nicholas II during the Russian Revolution, and he facilitated the first Labour government. And, as Jane Ridley shows, the modern British monarchy would not exist without George; he reinvented the institution, allowing it to survive and thrive when its very existence seemed doomed. The status of the British monarchy today, she argues, is due in large part to him.

    How this supposedly limited man managed to steer the crown through so many perils and adapt an essentially Victorian institution to the twentieth century is a great story in itself. But this book is also a riveting portrait of a royal marriage and family life. Queen Mary played a pivotal role in the reign as well as being an important figure in her own right. Under the couple's stewardship, the crown emerged stronger than ever. George V founded the modern monarchy, and yet his disastrous quarrel with his eldest son, the Duke of Windsor, culminated in the existential crisis of the Abdication only months after his death.

    Jane Ridley has had unprecedented access to the archives, and for the first time is able to reassess in full the many myths associated with this crucial and dramatic time. She brings us a royal family and world not long vanished, and not so far from our own.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780062567499
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    Girls in the Wild Fig Tree: How I Fought to Save Myself, My Sister, and Thousands of Girls Worldwide

    Girls in the Wild Fig Tree: How I Fought to Save Myself, My Sister, and Thousands of Girls Worldwide
    $28.00

    An "elegant and inspiring memoir" by the human rights activist who changed the minds of her elders, reformed traditions from the inside, and is creating a better future for girls and women throughout Africa (Sonia Faleiro, New York Times).

    Nice Leng`ete was raised in a Maasai village in Kenya. In 1998, when Nice was six, her parents fell sick and died, and Nice and her sister Soila were taken in by their father's brother, who had little interest in the girls beyond what their dowries might fetch. Fearing "the cut" (female genital mutilation, a painful and sometimes deadly ritualistic surgery), which was the fate of all Maasai women, Nice and Soila climbed a tree to hide.

    Nice hoped to find a way to avoid the cut forever, but Soila understood it would be impossible. But maybe if one of the sisters submitted, the other would be spared. After Soila chose to undergo the surgery, sacrificing herself to save Nice, their lives diverged. Soila married, dropped out of school, and had children-all in her teenage years-while Nice postponed receiving the cut, continued her education, and became the first in her family to attend college.

    Supported by Amref, Nice used visits home to set an example for what an uncut Maasai woman can achieve. Other women listened, and the elders finally saw the value of intact, educated girls as the way of the future. The village has since ended FGM entirely, and Nice continues the fight to end FGM throughout Africa, and the world.

    Nice's journey from "heartbroken child and community outcast, to leader of the Maasai" is an inspiration and a reminder that one person can change the world-and every girl is worth saving.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780316463355
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    Go Back to Where You Came from: And Other Helpful Recommendations on How to Become American

    Go Back to Where You Came from: And Other Helpful Recommendations on How to Become American
    $26.95

    This is just one of the many warm, lovely, and helpful tips that Wajahat Ali and other children of immigrants receive on a daily basis. Go back where, exactly? Fremont, California, where he grew up, but is now an unaffordable place to live? Or Pakistan, the country his parents left behind a half-century ago?

    Growing up living the suburban American dream, young Wajahat devoured comic books (devoid of brown superheroes) and fielded well-intentioned advice from uncles and aunties. ("Become a doctor!") He had turmeric stains under his fingernails, was accident-prone, suffered from OCD, and wore Husky pants, but he was as American as his neighbors, with roots all over the world. Then, while Ali was studying at University of California, Berkeley, 9/11 happened. Muslims replaced communists as America's enemy #1, and he became an accidental spokesman and ambassador of all ordinary, unthreatening things Muslim-y.

    Now a middle-aged dad, Ali has become one of the foremost and funniest public intellectuals in America. In Go Back to Where You Came From, he tackles the dangers of Islamophobia, white supremacy, and chocolate hummus, peppering personal stories with astute insights into national security, immigration, and pop culture. In this refreshingly bold, hopeful, and uproarious memoir, Ali offers indispensable lessons for cultivating a more compassionate, inclusive, and delicious America.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780393867978
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    Go-Between: A Portrait of Growing Up Between Different Worlds (Main)

    Go-Between: A Portrait of Growing Up Between Different Worlds (Main)
    $25.00

    A coming-of-age story set in Birmingham in the 1980s and 1990s, The Go-Between opens a window into a closed migrant community living in a red-light district on the wrong side of the tracks.

    The adult world is seen through Osman's eyes as a child: his own devout Pashtun patriarchal community, with its divide between the world of men and women, living cheek-by-jowl with parallel migrant communities. The orthodox attend a mosque down the road from the prostitutes and pimps. Children balance Western school teachings with cultural traditions.

    Alternative masculinities compete with strict gender roles, and female erasure and honour-based violence are committed, even as empowering female friendships prevail. The stories Osman tells, some fantastical and humorous, others melancholy and even harrowing, take us from the Birmingham of Osman's childhood to the banks of the river Kabul and the river Indus, and, eventually, to the London of his teenage years.

    Osman weaves in and out of these worlds, struggling with the dual burdens of racism and community expectations, as he is forced to realise it is no longer possible to exist in the spaces in between.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781786893529
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    Going There

    Going There
    $18.99

    This heartbreaking, hilarious, and brutally honest memoir shares the deeply personal life story of a girl next door and her transformation into a household name.

    For more than forty years, Katie Couric has been an iconic presence in the media world. In her brutally honest, hilarious, heartbreaking memoir, she reveals what was going on behind the scenes of her sometimes tumultuous personal and professional life - a story she's never shared, until now. Of the medium she loves, the one that made her a household name, she says, "Television can put you in a box; the flat-screen can flatten. On TV, you are larger than life but smaller, too. It is not the whole story, and it is not the whole me. This book is."

    Beginning in early childhood, Couric was inspired by her journalist father to pursue the career he loved but couldn't afford to stay in. Balancing her vivacious, outgoing personality with her desire to be taken seriously, she overcame every obstacle in her way: insecurity, an eating disorder, being typecast, sexism . . . challenges, and how she dealt with them, setting the tone for the rest of her career. Couric talks candidly about adjusting to sudden fame after her astonishing rise to co-anchor of the TODAY show, and guides us through the most momentous events and news stories of the era, to which she had a front-row seat: Rodney King, Anita Hill, Columbine, the death of Princess Diana, 9/11, the Iraq War . . . In every instance, she relentlessly pursued the facts, ruffling more than a few feathers along the way. She also recalls in vivid and sometimes lurid detail the intense pressure on female anchors to snag the latest "get"--often sensational tabloid stories like Jon Benet Ramsey, Tonya Harding, and OJ Simpson.

    Couric's position as one of the leading lights of her profession was shadowed by the shock and trauma of losing her husband to stage 4 colon cancer when he was just 42, leaving her a widow and single mom to two daughters, 6 and 2. The death of her sister Emily, just three years later, brought yet more trauma--and an unwavering commitment to cancer awareness and research, one of her proudest accomplishments.

    Couric is unsparing in the details of her historic move to the anchor chair at the CBS Evening News--a world rife with sexism and misogyny. Her "welcome" was even more hostile at 60 Minutes, an unrepentant boys club that engaged in outright hazing of even the most established women. In the wake of the MeToo movement, Couric shares her clear-eyed reckoning with gender inequality and predatory behavior in the workplace, and downfall of Matt Lauer--a colleague she had trusted and respected for more than a decade.

    Couric also talks about the challenge of finding love again, with all the hilarity, false-starts, and drama that search entailed, before finding her midlife Mr. Right. Something she has never discussed publicly--why her second marriage almost didn't happen.

    If you thought you knew Katie Couric, think again. Going There is the fast-paced, emotional, riveting story of a thoroughly modern woman, whose journey took her from humble origins to superstardom. In these pages, you will find a friend, a confidante, a role model, a survivor whose lessons about life will enrich your own.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780316535892
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    Good American: The Epic Life of Bob Gersony, the U.S. Government's Greatest Humanitarian

    Good American: The Epic Life of Bob Gersony, the U.S. Government's Greatest Humanitarian
    $30.00
    From the New York Times bestselling author of The Revenge of Geography comes a sweeping yet intimate story of the most influential humanitarian you've never heard of--Bob Gersony, who spent four decades in crisis zones around the world.

    "For anyone who has stopped believing that one person can make a difference, or that government service is still a noble calling, or that facts still matter, or that the American brand can still hold fast to practical idealism, this book is the antidote to those fears."--Jim Mattis, general, U.S. Marines (ret.), and former secretary of defense, author of Call Sign Chaos

    In his long career as an acclaimed journalist covering the "hot" moments of the Cold War and its aftermath, bestselling author Robert D. Kaplan often found himself crossing paths with Bob Gersony, a consultant for the U.S. State Department whose quiet dedication and consequential work made a deep impression on Kaplan.

    Gersony, a high school dropout later awarded a Bronze Star for his service in Vietnam, conducted on-the-ground research for the U.S. government in virtually every war and natural-disaster zone in the world. In Thailand, Central and South America, Sudan, Chad, Mozambique, Rwanda, Gaza, Bosnia, North Korea, Iraq, and beyond, Gersony never flinched from entering dangerous areas that diplomats could not reach, sometimes risking his own life. Gersony's behind-the scenes fact-finding, which included interviews with hundreds of refugees and displaced persons from each war zone and natural-disaster area, often challenged the assumptions and received wisdom of the powers that be, on both the left and the right. In nearly every case, his advice and recommendations made American policy at once smarter and more humane--often dramatically so.

    In Gersony, Kaplan saw a powerful example of how American diplomacy should be conducted. In a work that exhibits Kaplan's signature talent for combining travel and geography with sharp political analysis, The Good American tells Gersony's powerful life story. Set during the State Department's golden age, this is a story about the loneliness, sweat, and tears and the genuine courage that characterized Gersony's work in far-flung places. It is also a celebration of ground-level reporting: a page-turning demonstration, by one of our finest geopolitical thinkers, of how getting an up-close, worm's-eye view of crises and applying sound reason can elicit world-changing results.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780525512301
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    Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers

    Good Neighbor: The Life and Work of Fred Rogers
    $18.00
    The definitive biography of Fred Rogers, children's television pioneer and American cultural icon, an instant New York Times bestseller

    Fred Rogers (1928-2003) was an enormously influential figure in the history of television. As the creator and star of Mister Rogers' Neighborhood, he was a champion of compassion, equality, and kindness, fiercely devoted to children and taking their questions about the world seriously. The Good Neighbor is the first full-length biography of Fred Rogers.

    Based on original interviews, oral histories, and archival documents, The Good Neighbor traces Rogers's personal, professional, and artistic life through decades of work. It includes his surprising decision to walk away from the show in 1976 to make television for adults, only to return to the neighborhood to help children face complex issues such as divorce, discipline, mistakes, anger, and competition. The Good Neighbor is the definitive portrait of a beloved figure.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781419735165
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    Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 50 Postcards

    Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls: 50 Postcards
    $20.00
    Based on the New York Times bestseller and the most crowdfunded original book in Kickstarter history

    Show girls that they can be anything they want to be with this postcard set of 50 women that have changed history, from First Lady Michelle Obama to the Syrian refugee and Olympic swimmer Yusra Mardini. Here are 50 postcards--50 pieces of art to send or save--that celebrate your favorite heroes. The cards are organized with 5 tabbed dividers--organized by the pioneers, leaders, creators, champions, and warriors who have broken down barriers--and everything is packaged in a unique keepsake box. With a short bio of the woman on each card and powerful quotes to pepper the package, this is a perfect stocking stuffer or gift for your favorite feminist.

    The rebels include:

    Creators: Frida Kahlo, The Bronte Sisters, Julia Child, Nina Simone, Zaha Hadid, Xian Zhang, Ada Lovelace, Maud Stevens Wagner, Maria Callas, and Millo Castro Zaldarriaga

    Leaders: Queen Elizabeth I, Fadumo Dayib, Yaa Asantewaa, Jingu, Hatshepsut, Nanny of the Maroons, Lakshmi Bai, Hillary Rodham Clinton, Michelle Obama, and Eufrosina Cruz

    Pioneers: Sylvia Earle, Ann Makosinski, Jane Goodall, Alek Wek, Maria Sibylla Merian, Balkissa Chaibou, Wang Zhenyi, Mae C. Jemison, Cholita Climbers, and Maria Reiche

    Champions: Yursa Mardini, Maya Gabeira, Wilma Rudolph, Serena and Venus Williams, Mary Kom, Alfonsina Strada, Amna Al Haddad, Misty Copeland, Simone Biles, and Ashley Fiolek

    Warriors: Sonita Alizadeh, Claudia Ruggerini, Malala Yousafzai, Manal Al-Sharif, Maya Angelou, Rosa Parks, Anna Politkovskaya, Harriet Tubman, Miriam Makeba, and Irena Sendlerowa

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9780525576525
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    Grace & Steel

    Grace & Steel
    $21.99

    From New York Times bestselling celebrity biographer J. Randy Taraborrelli comes Grace & Steel, the epic, hidden history of the exceptional women behind the greatest political dynasty of all time--the Bush family.

    Bestselling author J. Randy Taraborrelli reveals the unsung heroines of the inimitable Bush family dynasty: not only First Ladies Barbara and Laura, but other colorful women whose stories have been left out of history for far too long, including Barbara's mother-in-law, the formidable Dorothy Bush; the enigmatic Columba and the controversial Sharon; and Laura's twins, Jenna and Barbara.

    No matter the challenges related to power and politics, the women of the Bush dynasty always fought for equality in their marriages as they raised their children to be true to American values. In doing so, they inspired everyday Americans to do the same. Or, as Barbara Bush put it, "The future of this nation does not depend on what happens in the White House, but what happens in your house."

    Details from the book include:

    --The tragedy Barbara faced in burying her three-year-old daughter, Robin, and her struggle with depression over the decades that followed.

    --The tragic night a teenage Laura Bush accidentally killed a good friend--a story she did not discuss publicly for decades.

    --The revelation of the affair that almost doomed George HW's hopes for the presidency.

    --The truth behind the fraught relationship between Nancy Reagan and Barbara Bush that culminated in an angry phone call during which Barbara told her she would never speak to her again--and she didn't.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781250248695
    0

    Grant's Tomb

    Grant's Tomb
    $25.99
    The moving story of Ulysses S. Grant's final battle, and the definitive account of the national memorial honoring him as one of America's most enduring heroes

    The final resting place of Ulysses S. Grant, the victorious general in the Civil War and the eighteenth president of the United States, is a colossal neoclassical tomb located in the most dynamic city in the country. It is larger than the final resting place of any other president or any other person in America. Since its creation, the popularity and condition of this monument, built to honor the man and what he represented to a grateful nation at the time of his death, a mere twenty years after the end of the Civil War, have reflected not only Grant's legacy in the public mind but also the state of New York City and of the Union.

    In this fascinating, deeply researched book, presidential historian Louis L. Picone recounts the full story. He begins with Grant's heroic final battle during the last year of his life, to complete his memoirs in order to secure his family's financial future while contending with painful, incurable cancer. Grant accomplished this just days before his death, and his memoirs, published by Mark Twain, became a bestseller. Accompanying his account with numerous period photographs, Picone narrates the national response to Grant's passing and how his tomb came to be: the intense competition to be the resting place for Grant's remains, the origins of the memorial and its design, the struggle to finance and build it over the course of twelve years, and the vicissitudes of its afterlife in the history of the nation up to recent times.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781950691708
    0
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    Great Dissenter: The Story of John Marshall Harlan, America's Judicial Hero

    Great Dissenter: The Story of John Marshall Harlan, America's Judicial Hero
    $32.50
    The "superb" (The Guardian) biography of an American who stood against all the forces of Gilded Age America to fight for civil rights and economic freedom: Supreme Court Justice John Marshall Harlan.

    They say that history is written by the victors. But not in the case of the most famous dissenter on the Supreme Court. Almost a century after his death, John Marshall Harlan's words helped end segregation and gave us our civil rights and our modern economic freedom.

    But his legacy would not have been possible without the courage of Robert Harlan, a slave who John's father raised like a son in the same household. After the Civil War, Robert emerges as a political leader. With Black people holding power in the Republican Party, it is Robert who helps John land his appointment to the Supreme Court.

    At first, John is awed by his fellow justices, but the country is changing. Northern whites are prepared to take away black rights to appease the South. Giant trusts are monopolizing entire industries. Against this onslaught, the Supreme Court seemed all too willing to strip away civil rights and invalidate labor protections. So as case after case comes before the court, challenging his core values, John makes a fateful decision: He breaks with his colleagues in fundamental ways, becoming the nation's prime defender of the rights of Black people, immigrant laborers, and people in distant lands occupied by the US.

    Harlan's dissents, particularly in Plessy v. Ferguson, were widely read and a source of hope for decades. Thurgood Marshall called Harlan's Plessy dissent his "Bible"--and his legal roadmap to overturning segregation. In the end, Harlan's words built the foundations for the legal revolutions of the New Deal and Civil Rights eras.

    Spanning from the Civil War to the Civil Rights movement and beyond, The Great Dissenter is a "magnificent" (Douglas Brinkley) and "thoroughly researched" (The New York Times) rendering of the American legal system's most significant failures and most inspiring successes.

    ISBN/SKU: 
    9781501188206
    0
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