Reviews > Books
Bernard Sumner’s Modest Tales of Joy Division and New Order

Guitarist Bernard Sumner shares his recollections of Joy Division and New Order, both seminal post-punk outfits whose influence cannot be overstated.

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Sounds French: Globalization, Cultural Communities and Pop Music, 1958-1980

As one of the first of the French punk groups, Stinky Toys grappled with authenticity, illustrating the pitfalls that French musicians experienced while navigating their place in the genre.

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Library of America Rethinks Women and the Hard Boiled Tradition in New Set of Women’s Crime Writing

This box set represents a nuanced perspective not only of the crime fiction genre, but of women's contributions to mid-century American culture.

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The Edible Series Offers Up Delectable Food for Thought

What do doughnuts, lamb, sausage and water all share? A fraught and fascinating cultural history.

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Bernard Harcourt’s Study on Our Surveillance State, ‘Exposed’, Is a Call for Action

Surveillance, contrary to 19th century theories, is not an activity perpetrated solely by actors of the state, but rather by “state like” actors -- and we are the actors.

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The Eternally Recurrent Themes in Susan Barker’s ‘The Incarnations’

The Incarnations works perfectly as a collection of studied, precise short stories unified by simple but powerful themes and a bevy of stylistic strengths.

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The Real Walking Dead: Joshua M. Price’s ‘Prison and Social Death’

This book is about society. Shifting the focus from the individual (crime) to the social (punishment) is not so much a political choice as it is an ethical imperative.

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Trailing the Artisans of Oneiric Worlds in Anand Pandian’s ‘Reel World’

Reel World reconciles the recondite with the banal, the sublime with the quotidian, and the real with the mythological.

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Do We Need a Book That Talks About Videogames in Relation to Kant’s Thoughts on the Sublime?

Whether you played Pac-Man as a kid, are a videogame fanatic, or simply enjoy Words with Friends, How to Talk About Videogames has much to offer.

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Emma: 200th Anniversary Annotated Edition by Jane Austen

From Downton Abbey to Doctor Who, from BBC America to Sir Ian McKellen reciting Shakespeare in Marc Maron’s garage, America seems to have never fully disengaged itself from British popular culture.

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A Master Storyteller Is Revealed in ‘A Manual for Cleaning Women’

Lucia Berlin paints portraits of environments and people with an attentive, sympathetic and often cinematic eye.

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Does Michael Jackson’s Work Contain the Stuff of Genius?

Steve Knopper’s highly readable biography MJ: The Genius of Michael Jackson lays out a credible case for Jackson to be considered along those lofty lines, and not simply as a supreme entertainer.

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Lillian Faderman’s ‘The Gay Revolution’ Gives an Epic Sweep to a Story of Repression and Resistance

How does the amazing evolution in the image and status of gays and lesbians, as well as bisexual and transgender people, affect all Americans? What remains to be done?

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Steven Pinker Wants You to Write Well—and He Thinks He’s the Guy to Teach You

The prolific scholar and linguist Steven Pinker adds a volume to the already crowded field of grammar and usage guides. But does he have anything new to say?

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‘Ghosts: A Haunted History’ Is Sure to Grip the Believer and the Skeptic Alike

Comprehensive, fascinating, and eye-catching, Lisa Morton's Ghosts: A Haunted History is the only book you'll ever need about the world's most notable supernatural entity.

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‘The Big Bad Book of Bill Murray’ Boldly Goes Where No Reasoning Mortal Has Gone Before

Robert Schnakenberg provides a humorous string of golden informational nuggets about the existence and philosophy of one of the world’s least understood and most fascinating weirdos.

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Reality Itself Is Malevolent in Thomas Ligotti’s Work

Ligotti's stories seem almost violently unpalatable. They afford neither easy resolutions nor the seemingly ambiguous but ultimately fulfilling pleasures of so many mystery stories.

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On the Creative Process, the Cultural Impact, and the Legacy of ‘Peanuts’

Only What’s Necessary is a gorgeous tribute to Charles M. Schulz that feels personal and intimate in ways that a mere biography or retrospective is unable to achieve.

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‘Neil Young: American Traveller’ Annotates Young’s Musical Map

Martin Halliwell takes obvious joy in exploring Neil Young's famous wanderlust, and illustrates the sometimes complicated relationship between musician and landscape.

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‘Pop Sonnets’ Is an Evolutionary Leap for Both Vanilla Ice and Shakespeare

This book is clearly a long labor of love, and a terrific feat of will and intellect.

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The Moving Pixels Podcast Looks at the Scenic Vistas and Human Drama of 'Firewatch'

// Moving Pixels

"This week we consider the beautiful world that Campo Santo has built for us to explore and the way that the game explores human relationships through its protagonist's own explorations within that world.

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