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24-Carat Black's 'Ghetto' Is the Most Sampled Album Never Heard

33 1/3 book 24-Carat Black's Ghetto: Misfortune's Wealth, is a refreshing outlier in the series in that it's about an influential yet barely known album.

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Celebrate People's History Vol. 2: Power to the People!

Our fight for justice throughout the world is captured in this dynamic collection of posters, Celebrate People's History Vol. 2, courtesy of Feminist Press and Justseeds Artists' Cooperative.

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Tom Petty and the Heart Breakers Bio 'Somewhere You Feel Free' Feels Constrained

This recent Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers biography sticks to the objective facts so closely, and the telling is so firmly chronological, that the author tends to miss the forest for the trees.

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'People of the City' Is an Unrelenting Critique of Colonial Ideology and Praxis

Cyprian Ekwensi's People of the City is a vivid tale of class struggle and identity reclamation in the shadows of colonialism's reign.

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Bishakh Som's 'Spellbound' Is an Innovative Take on the Graphic Memoir

Bishakh's Som's graphic memoir, Spellbound, serves as a reminder that trans memoirs need not hinge on transition narratives, or at least not on the ones we are used to seeing.

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'World War 3 Illustrated #51: The World We Are Fighting For'

World War 3 Illustrated #51 displays an eclectic range of artists united in their call to save democracy from rising fascism.

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Oscar Hijuelos' 'Mambo Kings Play the Songs of Love' Dances On

Oscar Hijuelos' dizzyingly ambitious foot-tapping family epic, Mambo Kings Play the Songs of Love, opened the door for Latinx writers to tell their stories in all their richness.

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David Lazar's 'Celeste Holm  Syndrome' Appreciates Hollywood's Unsung Character Actors

David Lazar's Celeste Holm Syndrome documents how character actor work is about scene-defining, not scene-stealing.

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Literary Scholar Andrew H. Miller On Solitude As a Common Bond

Andrew H. Miller's On Not Being Someone Else considers how contemplating other possibilities for one's life is a way of creating meaning in the life one leads.

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Vigdis Hjorth's 'Long Live the Post Horn!' Breathes Life into Bureaucratic Anxiety

Vigdis Hjorth's Long Live the Post Horn! is a study in existential torpor that, happily, does not induce the same condition in the reader.

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Manual for Survival's History of Chernobyl Resonates in Our Time of COVID-19

Shortly after the reactor explosion in Chernobyl in 1986, officials in Belarus offered up an argument that will be hauntingly familiar to those tracking the spread of COVID-19.

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The Singularity of Žižek

According to Slavoj Žižek's latest work, Hegel in a Wired Brain, a new kind of Fall from the Fall is necessary.

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C.C. Tsai's 'Dao De Jing' Has Visual Rhythm

It's odd to read the talk-balloon musings of a Yoda-proportioned philosopher, but C.C. Tsai carries the wisdom in his caricature.

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Wendy Carlos: Musical Pioneer, Reluctant Icon

Amanda Sewell's vastly informative new biography on musical trailblazer Wendy Carlos is both reverent and honest.

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'The Art of Drag' Captivates and Unites

Like a properly tightened corset, the total effect of The Art of Drag lends a stunning shape to the art forms in question.

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'Gender Explorers' Offers Insight into Youth Perspectives on Gender

Trans activist Juno Roche's latest work, Gender Explorers, is about listening to youth, not dictating to them.

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Sheena Kamal's 'No Going Back' Unfurls a Thrilling Noir

Kamal's psychological thriller, No Going Back, utilizes crime-noir tropes but with purposeful deviations.

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Manga 'The Sky Is Blue with a Single Cloud' Is a Superb Collection of Kuniko Tsurita's Works

The late manga artist Kuniko Tsurita's works virtually demand repeat readings: initially cryptic, always compelling, inviting the reader to try again, and offering new suggestions and meanings with each read.

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Zadie Smith's 'Intimations' Essays Pandemic With Erudite Wit and Compassion

Zadie Smith's Intimations is an essay collection of gleaming, wry, and crisp prose that wears its erudition lightly but takes flight on both everyday and lofty matters.

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The Redemption of Elton John's 'Blue Moves'

Once reviled as bloated and pretentious, Elton John's 1976 album Blue Moves, is one of his masterpieces, argues author Matthew Restall in the latest installment of the 33 1/3 series.

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Sikoryak's 'Constitution Illustrated' Pays Homage to Comics and the Constitution

R. Sikoryak's satirical pairings of comics characters with famous and infamous American historical figures breathes new and sometimes uncomfortable life into the United States' most living document.

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Graphic Novel 'Cuisine Chinoise' Is a Feast for the Eyes and the Mind

Lush art and dark, cryptic fables permeate Zao Dao's stunning graphic novel, Cuisine Chinoise.

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Murder Is Most Factorial in 'Eighth Detective'

Mathematician Alex Pavesi's debut novel, The Eighth Detective, posits mathematical rules defining 'detective fiction'.

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Tomine's Anti-Memoir, 'The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Cartoonist'

There's something perversely entertaining for a memoir about the career of its successful author to stay so relentlessly focused on failures as Tomine.

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Halle Butler's 'Jillian' Is a Frank Account of Discontent

Evoking both sarcasm and empathy, Butler paints Jillian and Megan as harbingers of a relatable alienation.

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Leslie Stein's Thoughtful and Honest Memoir About Abortion

The sensitively depicted graphic memoir I Know You Rider is the story of an abortion, but more than that it's a moment in time in Leslie Stein's life.

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Ottessa Moshfegh's 'Death in Her Hands' Is Not What It Seems

A character named Magda dies, and lives, in language only in Ottessa Moshfegh's Death in Her Hands. But then again, don't all literary characters?

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Kent Russell Seeks the Soul of Florida on Epic Road Trip, on Foot

In a bit of drunken revelry, Kent Russell and his buddies decide it is their destiny to tell the gonzo story of Florida in the time when Trump is campaigning for president.

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'Perramus: The City and Oblivion' Depicts Argentina's Violent Anti-Communist Purge

Juan Sasturain and Alberto Breccia's graphic novel Peraramus: The City and Oblivion, is an absurd and existential odyssey of a political dissident who can't remember his name.

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'High Cotton' Is Culturally Astute and Progressive

Kristie Robin Johnson's collection of essays in High Cotton dismantle linear thinking with shrewdness and empathy.

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Ivy Mix's 'Spirits of Latin America' Evokes the Ancestors

A common thread unites Ivy Mix's engaging Spirits of Latin America; "the chaotic intermixture between indigenous and European traditions" is still an inextricable facet of life for everyone who inhabits the "New World".

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'How to Handle a Crowd' Goes to the Moderators

Anika Gupta's How to Handle a Crowd casts a long-overdue spotlight on the work that goes into making online communities enjoyable and rewarding.

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Fleetwood Dissects the European Mindset in His Moody, Disturbing Thriller, 'A Young Fair God'

Hugh Fleetwood's difficult though absorbing A Young Fair God offers readers a look into the age-old world views that have established and perpetuated cultural rank and the social attitudes that continue to divide us wherever we may reside in the world.

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'Dancing After TEN' Graphic Memoir Will Move You

Art dances with loss in the moving double-memoir by comics artists Vivian Chong and Georgia Webber, Dancing After TEN.

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'Hex' Drinks Deeply from the Poisoned Chalice

Whereas Rebecca Dinerstein Knight's novel demonstrates moments of emotional intensity and humor, Hex's proclivity towards toxicity is overburdening.

Books

Journalist Jonathan Cott's Interviews, Captured

With his wide-ranging interviews, Jonathan Cott explores "the indispensable and transformative powers of the imagination."

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First Tragedy, Then Farce, Then What?

Riffing off Marx's riff on Hegel on history, art historian and critic Hal Foster contemplates political culture and cultural politics in the age of Donald Trump in What Comes After Farce?


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