And the Heart Says Whateverby Emily Gould
A Gawker alum tells all about young adulthood in New York and the literary life in the 21st century.
In a much-discussed cover story for The New York Times Magazine, Brooklyn-based blogger Emily Gould opened up about her experiences as an editor at Gawker. Her debut memoir, And the Heart Says Whatever, is similarly confessional: Gould recounts breakups, job misery, sex, bad decisions, and the disillusionment of a twentysomething trying to survive in New York City. Gould tells her stories with a raw, honest voice and the book brims with sharp insights into the temper of her generation. “This is not a 'nice' book, but it comes by its anger and melancholy honestly, and it makes sense of much that is puzzling about our cultural moment," said Jonathan Franzen.
Homesickby Eshkol Nevo
A popular Israeli novelist's portrait of an Israeli town and the complexity of the relationships within.
In this award-winning novel, Jerusalem native Eshkol Nevo presents a complex, dynamic series of relationships in a small town halfway between Tel Aviv and Jerusalem in the mid-1990s. Two young students, Noa and Amir, move into an apartment in the town of Mevasseret and discover what lies beneath the surface: an interwoven tapestry of people, histories, and conflicts. Nevo's nuanced depiction of Israel life is told from multiple perspectives, those of the landlords living next to Noa and Amir, the neighbors whose son died in Lebanon, and an Arab family facing discrimination daily. The Times Literary Supplement raved, "The novel’s heartfelt bass note is the beauty and difficulty of human relationships, evoked with sympathy and an ear for the nuances of different voices which is as playful as it is precise."
The Last Hero: A Life of Henry Aaronby Howard Bryant
The long-awaited biography of one of baseball’s heaviest hitters.
With it seems each day bringing a new pro athlete caught in a sex or performance-enhancing-drug scandal, figures like Henry Aaron grow even more angelic by comparison. A crucial figure in both baseball and the civil-rights movement, Aaron’s influence has cast a long shadow in American history, and is being chronicled for the first time in The Last Hero: A Life of Henry Aaron . With an insider’s perspective, ESPN reporter Howard Bryant sheds light on the struggles and difficult decisions that led to Aaron’s record-breaking career. “No one was more important to the game of baseball in the last half of the 20th century than Henry Aaron, and no one writes about that supremely talented man better than Howard Bryant,” said Ken Burns.
Truthby Peter Temple
One crime unravels an entire city’s infrastructure.
Like all of the best crime stories, Truth opens with the mysterious death of a prostitute. As inspector Stephen Villani struggles to keep his own personal life afloat, he puts together the pieces of a crime and uncovers a string of corruption with unfathomable scope. Peter Temple is at his best with Truth, which The Guardian called “a stunning piece of psychological portraiture.”
The Other Wes Moore by Wes Moore
Two men with the same name, one in prison, one a Rhodes Scholar.
There are two Wes Moores with two very different lives. Despite growing up in the same city just blocks from each other, one graduated from Johns Hopkins and was a Rhodes Scholar while the other is serving life in prison for murder. When the first Moore contacts his doppelganger in prison, he realizes their childhoods are not dissimilar: same neighborhood, both fatherless, both in and out of school, hung out in the same locales. So, what was it that shifted one toward success and one toward incarceration? The author investigates the forces that shaped each life, so similar at first, yet so different in the end. “It’s a moving book, with an appendix of resources that make it a call to arms,” said Elizabeth Taylor in the Chicago Tribune.