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196 Featured Titles

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Exam Copy
So You Wanna Be a Rock & Roll Star
How I Machine-Gunned a Roomful Of Record Executives and Other True Tales from a Drummer's Life
Written by Jacob Slichter

Format: Trade Paperback, 304 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: May 10, 2005
Price: $14.99
ISBN: 978-0-7679-1471-0 (0-7679-1471-6)

A hilarious inside look at the real business of popular music by the drummer of Semisonic that does for rock and roll what Jim Bouton's Ball Four did for baseball.

After years of working day jobs and making music in his basement, Jacob Slichter wondered if his dreams of rock stardom were... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Trying Not to Try
The Art and Science of Spontaneity
Written by Edward Slingerland

Format: Hardcover, 304 pages
Publisher: Crown
On Sale: March 4, 2014
Price: $26.00
ISBN: 978-0-7704-3761-9 (0-7704-3761-3)

Why is it always so hard to fall asleep the night before an important meeting? Or to relax into a productive writing zone? In every case, striving seems to backfire. In Trying Not to Try, Edward Slingerland explores the power of spontaneity—a state valued by early Chinese thinkers that modern cognitive... Read more >
Also available as an unabridged audiobook download, eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
On the Road with Bob Dylan

Written by Larry Sloman
Introduction by Kinky Friedman

Format: Trade Paperback, 496 pages
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
On Sale: August 27, 2002
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-1-4000-4596-9 (1-4000-4596-7)

The War and Peace of Rock and Roll.” —Bob Dylan

In 1975, as Bob Dylan emerged from eight years of seclusion, he dreamed of putting together a traveling music show that would trek across the country like a psychedelic carnival. The dream became reality, and On the Road with Bob Dylan is... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Talk to Me
Travels in Media and Politics
Written by Anna Deavere Smith

Format: Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: October 16, 2001
Price: $17.00
ISBN: 978-0-385-72174-5 (0-385-72174-9)

Believing that character and language are inextricably bound, Smith sets out to discern the essence of America by listening to its people and trying to capture its politics. To that end she travels to some of America's most conspicuous places, like the presidential conventions of 1996, and some of its darkest... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Finishing the Hat
Collected Lyrics (1954-1981) with Attendant Comments, Principles, Heresies, Grudges, Whines and Anecdotes
Written by Stephen Sondheim

Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: October 26, 2010
Price: $45.00
ISBN: 978-0-679-43907-3 (0-679-43907-2)

Stephen Sondheim has won seven Tonys, an Academy Award, seven Grammys, a Pulitzer Prize and the Kennedy Center Honors. His career has spanned more than half a century, his lyrics have become synonymous with musical theater and popular culture, and in Finishing the Hat—titled after perhaps his most autobiographical song, from... Read more >

Exam Copy
Look, I Made a Hat
Collected Lyrics (1981-2011) with Attendant Comments, Amplifications, Dogmas, Harangues, Digressions, Anecdotes and Miscellany
Written by Stephen Sondheim

Format: Hardcover, 480 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: November 22, 2011
Price: $45.00
ISBN: 978-0-307-59341-2 (0-307-59341-X)

After his acclaimed and best-selling Finishing the Hat (named one of the New York Times 10 Best Books of 2010), Stephen Sondheim returns with the second volume of his collected lyrics, Look, I Made a Hat, giving us another remarkable glimpse into the brilliant mind of this living legend, and his... Read more >

Exam Copy
We Got the Neutron Bomb
The Untold Story of L.A. Punk
Written by Marc Spitz and Brendan Mullen

Format: Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Three Rivers Press
On Sale: November 13, 2001
Price: $16.00
ISBN: 978-0-609-80774-3 (0-609-80774-9)

Taking us back to late ’70s and early ’80s Hollywood—pre-crack, pre-AIDS, pre-Reagan—We Got the Neutron Bomb re-creates word for word the rage, intensity, and anarchic glory of the Los Angeles punk scene, straight from the mouths of the scenesters, zinesters, groupies, filmmakers, and musicians who were there.

“California was wide-open sex—no condoms... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Billion Dollar Game
Behind the Scenes of the Greatest Day In American Sport - Super Bowl Sunday
Written by Allen St. John

Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: January 12, 2010
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-7679-2815-1 (0-7679-2815-6)

A fascinating portrait of the National Football League, the Super Bowl, and all the position players who come together to create the biggest cultural phenomenon in American sports.

Think the Super Bowl is only about two teams of titans clashing on the field? Think again. The Super Bowl is about fans, hundreds... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Rammer Jammer Yellow Hammer
A Road Trip into the Heart of Fan Mania
Written by Warren St. John

Format: Trade Paperback, 288 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: May 31, 2005
Price: $15.00
ISBN: 978-0-609-80713-2 (0-609-80713-7)

A Chronicle of Higher Education Top 10 Best College-Sports Books Ever**

"St. John offers an unsurpassed blend of scholarly heft (he's gathered all of the scattered research on sports fandom), superb reporting (among those we meet is the Alabama fan so full of hate toward Tennessee that he'd root for "Notre Dame... Read more >

Exam Copy
Conversations at the American Film Institute with the Great Moviemakers
The Next Generation
Written by George Stevens, Jr.

Format: Hardcover, 768 pages
Publisher: Knopf
On Sale: April 3, 2012
Price: $39.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-27347-5 (0-307-27347-4)

A companion volume to George Stevens, Jr.’s, much admired book of American Film Institute seminars with the great pioneering moviemakers (“Invaluable”—Martin Scorsese).

Those represented here—directors, producers, writers, actors, cameramen, composers, editors—are men and women working in pictures, beginning in 1950, when the studio system was collapsing and people could no longer depend... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a trade paperback.

Exam Copy
Satisfaction Guaranteed
The Making of the American Mass Market
Written by Susan Strasser

Format: Trade Paperback, 348 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: October 17, 2004
Price: $19.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-146-4 (1-58834-146-1)

This sweeping history provides the reader with a better understanding of America’s consumer society, obsession with shopping, and devotion to brands. Focusing on the advertising campaigns of Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s, Wrigley’s, Gillette, and Kodak, Strasser shows how companies created both national brands and national markets. These new brands eventually displaced generic manufacturers... Read more >

Exam Copy
The Life
Written by Anthony Summers and Robbyn Swan

Format: Trade Paperback, 624 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: May 30, 2006
Price: $22.00
ISBN: 978-0-375-71370-5 (0-375-71370-0)

Packed with revelations, this is the first complete account of a career built on raw talent, sheer willpower--and criminal connections. Anthony Summers—bestselling author of Goddess: The Secret Lives of Marilyn Monroe—and Robbyn Swan unveil stunning new information about Sinatra’s links to the Mafia, his crowded love life and his tangled relationships... Read more >

Exam Copy
Culture as History
The Transformation of American Society in the Twentieth Century
Written by Warren I. Susman

Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Smithsonian Books
On Sale: February 17, 2003
Price: $17.95
ISBN: 978-1-58834-051-1 (1-58834-051-1)

With amazing creativity, clarity, and wit, Warren Susman (1927-1985) takes us on a provocative tour of the highlights of American culture. By looking at all types of 20th-century culture–highbrow, lowbrow, and middlebrow–Susman shows how culture itself has become a battleground for competing visions of American life. Fourteen essays include such topics... Read more >

Exam Copy
Fame and Obscurity

Written by Gay Talese

Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Ivy Books
On Sale: March 1, 1995
Price: $19.00
ISBN: 978-0-345-46723-2 (0-345-46723-X)

In this extraordinary work of insight and interviews, bestselling author Gay Talese shares with us the lives of those we don't know and those we might wish we did: Frank Sinatra, Joe DiMaggio, Manhattan mobsters, Bowery bums, and many others -- fascinating men and women who defined America's spirit in the... Read more >

Exam Copy
Honor Thy Father

Written by Gay Talese

Format: Paperback, 480 pages
Publisher: Ivy Books
On Sale: April 26, 1992
Price: $7.99
ISBN: 978-0-8041-1058-7 (0-8041-1058-1)

"Brilliant . . . Indispensable."
Los Angeles Times

Here is the story of the rise and fall of the notorious Bonanno crime family of New York as only best-selling author Gay Talese could tell it. Read more >

Exam Copy
Thy Neighbor's Wife

Written by Gay Talese

Format: Trade Paperback, 480 pages
Publisher: Ivy Books
On Sale: March 1, 1995
Price: $23.00
ISBN: 978-0-345-47270-0 (0-345-47270-5)

"Engrossing and provocative."
Library Journal

Bestselling author Gay Talese's exploration into the hidden and changing sex lives of Americans from all walks of life shocked the world when it was first published in 1981. Now considered a classic, this fascinating personal oddysey and revealing public reflection on American sexuality changed the way Americans... Read more >

Exam Copy
Bad Shoes & The Women Who Love Them

Written by Leora Tanenbaum
Illustrated by Vanessa Davis

Format: Trade Paperback, 192 pages
Publisher: Seven Stories Press
On Sale: June 1, 2010
Price: $13.95
ISBN: 978-1-58322-904-0 (1-58322-904-3)

Bad Shoes & the Women Who Love Them is a lighthearted wake-up call to women to make informed decisions when buying and wearing fashionable shoes. Arming the reader with essential facts, citing medical literature as well as leading podiatric surgeons and orthopedists, Tanenbaum covers the history of high heels, Chinese foot... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Everything But the Burden
What White People Are Taking from Black Culture
Written by Greg Tate

Format: Trade Paperback, 272 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: September 9, 2003
Price: $19.00
ISBN: 978-0-7679-1497-0 (0-7679-1497-X)

Following the trail blazed by Norman Mailer’s controversial essay “The White Negro,” Everything but the Burden brings together voices from music, popular culture, the literary world, and the media speaking about how from Brooklyn to the Badlands white people are co-opting black styles of music, dance, dress, and slang. In this... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
You're a Horrible Person, But I Like You
The Believer Book of Advice
Written by The Believer

Format: Trade Paperback, 224 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: April 6, 2010
Price: $14.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-47523-7 (0-307-47523-9)

A compendium of advice from the producers, writers, and actors of The Office, Saturday Night Live, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Knocked Up, Flight of the Conchords, The Daily Show, Arrested Development, Reno 911!, and The Hangover along with other people who should really never give advice.

In these pages Fred Armisen... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

October 7, 2014
Exam Copy
Seeing Power
Art and Activism in the Age of Cultural Production
Written by Nato Thompson

Format: Trade Paperback, 176 pages
Publisher: Melville House
On Sale: October 7, 2014
Price: $21.95
ISBN: 978-1-61219-044-0 (1-61219-044-8)

A significant meditation on political art and the politics of art by the country’s most celebrated young curator

A fog of information and images has flooded the world: from advertising, television, radio, and film to the information glut produced by the new economy. With the rise of social networking, even our contemporaries... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
Talk About Cinema

Written by Jean-Baptiste Thoret
Series edited by Elisabeth Couturier

Format: Trade Paperback, 256 pages
Publisher: Flammarion
On Sale: April 10, 2012
Price: $29.95
ISBN: 978-2-08-020096-9 (2-08-020096-8)

This fresh, engaging volume provides the key ideas for a better understanding of today’s cinematic style and the reference terms that are crucial to film studies by challenging preconceived ideas and clichés about cinema. It defines the main notions of film, explains major dates in its history, deciphers the leading works... Read more >

Exam Copy
How to Wreck a Nice Beach
The Vocoder from World War II to Hip-Hop, The Machine Speaks
Written by Dave Tompkins

Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Stop Smiling Books
On Sale: November 8, 2011
Price: $25.95
ISBN: 978-1-61219-092-1 (1-61219-092-8)

The history of the vocoder: how popular music hijacked the Pentagon’s speech scrambling weapon

The vocoder, invented by Bell Labs in 1928, once guarded phones from eavesdroppers during World War II; by the Vietnam War, it was repurposed as a voice-altering tool for musicians, and is now the ubiquitous voice of popular... Read more >
Also available as an eBook and a hardcover.

Exam Copy
Mark Twain's Other Woman
The Hidden Story of His Final Years
Written by Laura Skandera Trombley

Format: Trade Paperback, 352 pages
Publisher: Vintage
On Sale: March 8, 2011
Price: $16.95
ISBN: 978-0-307-47494-0 (0-307-47494-1)

Laura Skandera Trombley, the preeminent Twain scholar at work today, reveals the never-before-read letters and daily journals of Isabel Lyon, Mark Twain’s last personal secretary.

For six years, Isabel Lyon was responsible for running the aging Man in White’s chaotic household, nursing him through several illnesses and serving as his adoring... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The Times Were a Changin'
The Sixties Reader
Written by Debi Unger and Irwin Unger

Format: Trade Paperback, 368 pages
Publisher: Broadway Books
On Sale: July 21, 1998
Price: $17.00
ISBN: 978-0-609-80337-0 (0-609-80337-9)

This is an anthology of the milestone speeches, manifestos, court decisions, and groundbreaking journalism of the Sixties. No other period in American history has been more liberating, more confusing, more unforgettable, and had a more direct impact on the way we navigated the profound changes that swept over the country in... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.

Exam Copy
The First Fall Classic
The Red Sox, the Giants, and the Cast of Players, Pugs, and Politicos Who Reinvented the World Series in 1912
Written by Mike Vaccaro

Format: Trade Paperback, 320 pages
Publisher: Anchor
On Sale: September 21, 2010
Price: $15.95
ISBN: 978-0-7679-2968-4 (0-7679-2968-3)

In this wonderful page-turner, veteran sports journalist Mike Vaccaro brings to life a bygone era in cinematic and intimate detail—and re-creates the magic and suspense of the world’s first classic series.

Despite a major presidential election, the near-assassination of Teddy Roosevelt, and the most sensational trial of the young century, baseball dominated... Read more >
Also available as an eBook.
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