Tag Archives: Top New Books

New History Books: “American Disruptor – The Scandalous Life Of Leland Stanford” (De Wolk)

It is also the saga of how Stanford, once a serial failure, overcame all obstacles to become one of America’s most powerful and wealthiest men, using his high elective office to enrich himself before losing the one thing that mattered most to him – his only child and son. Scandal and intrigue would follow Stanford through his life, and even after his death, when his widow was murdered in a Honolulu hotel – a crime quickly covered up by the almost stillborn university she had saved.  Richly detailed and deeply researched, American Disruptor restores Leland Stanford’s rightful place as a revolutionary force and architect of modern America.

American Disruptor is the untold story of Leland Stanford – from his birth in a backwoods bar to the founding of the world-class university that became and remains the nucleus of Silicon Valley. The life of this robber baron, politician, and historic influencer is the astonishing tale of how one supremely ambitious man became this country’s original “disruptor” – reshaping industry and engineering one of the greatest raids on the public treasury for America’s transcontinental railroad, all while living more opulently than maharajas, kings, and emperors.

New Biographies: “The Shadow Of Vesuvius -A Life Of Pliny” By Daisy Dunn

The Shadow of Vesuvius A Life of Pliny by Daisy Dunn Dec 2019When Pliny the Elder perished at Stabiae during the eruption of Vesuvius in 79 AD, he left behind an enormous compendium of knowledge, his thirty-seven-volume Natural History, and a teenaged nephew who revered him as a father. Grieving his loss, Pliny the Younger inherited the Elder’s notebooks—filled with pearls of wisdom—and his legacy. At its heart, The Shadow of Vesuvius is a literary biography of the younger man, who would grow up to become a lawyer, senator, poet, collector of villas, and chronicler of the Roman Empire from the dire days of terror under Emperor Domitian to the gentler times of Emperor Trajan. A biography that will appeal to lovers of Mary Beard books, it is also a moving narrative about the profound influence of a father figure on his adopted son. Interweaving the younger Pliny’s Letters with extracts from the Elder’s Natural History, Daisy Dunn paints a vivid, compellingly readable portrait of two of antiquity’s greatest minds.

Nostalgia Books: “1973 – Rock At The Crossroads” By Andrew Grant Jackson

1973 Rock at the CrossroadsLed Zep’s Houses of the Holy reflected the rise of funk and reggae. The singer songwriter movement led by Bob Dylan, Neil Young, and Joni Mitchell flourished at the Troubadour and Max’s Kansas City, where Bruce Springsteen and Bob Marley shared bill. Elvis Presley’s Aloha from Hawaii via Satellite was NBC’s top-rated special of the year, while Elton John’s albums dominated the number one spot for two and a half months.

A fascinating account of the music and epic social change of 1973, a defining year for David Bowie, Bruce Springsteen, Pink Floyd, Elton John, the Rolling Stones, Eagles, Elvis Presley, and the former members of The Beatles.

1973 was the year rock hit its peak while splintering―just like the rest of the world. Ziggy Stardust travelled to America in David Bowie’s Aladdin Sane. The Dark Side of the Moon began its epic run on the Billboard charts, inspired by the madness of Pink Floyd’s founder, while all four former Beatles scored top ten albums, two hitting #1.

To read more and purchase: https://www.amazon.com/1973-Crossroads-Andrew-Grant-Jackson/dp/1250299985

New Motor Sports Books: “Beautiful Machines: The Era of the Elegant Sports Car” (Gestalten)

From the Gestalten website:

Beautiful Machines The Era of the Elegant Sports CarStart your engines for a grand tour of the most stylish grand motoring automobiles ever created. Evoking an era when elegance, romance, and outright performance defined the automobile and the fascinating stories that made them icons of the road. From the shark-inspired Maserati Ghibli to the fiery Lamborghini Miura, from European elegance with American firepower such as the Iso Grifo and Facel Vega to the groundbreaking designs of the Alfa Romeo Tipo 33 Stradale and Renault Alpine and the advanced technology behind the Jensen FF or Porsche 918 Spyder.

Beautiful Machines The Era of the Elegant Sports Car

These cars are less transportation and more testaments to beauty, freedom, ambition, innovation, and speed. Beautiful Machines was conceived and edited by gestalten. The stories are written by automobile expert Blake Z. Rong with a preface by Classic Driver’s Jan Baedeker and gestalten’s Robert Klanten.

To read more and order: https://us.gestalten.com/products/beautiful-machines?utm_source=Gestalten+Standard+Newsletter&utm_campaign=3d1d15ee2e-SPOCA+%2B+BRUMMM+US&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_280558bba4-3d1d15ee2e-3992541&mc_cid=3d1d15ee2e&mc_eid=d0c83e52f7

New Photography Books: “Midcentury Memories – The Anonymous Project” By Lee Shulman (Taschen)

Midcentury Memories The Anonymous Project Lee Shulman50 years ago, people used film cameras just as we use smartphones in the age of Instagram. They photographed their meals, holidays, loved ones, celebrations, and family reunions. Imagining the past lives of these strangers is the beauty and mystery of The Anonymous Project, which curates just under 300 images from this vast collection of 700,000+ Kodachrome slides. The places, dates, and people may be unknown, but the stories in these snapshots are universally familiar.

http://www.anonymous-project.com/

To order book: https://www.taschen.com/pages/en/catalogue/photography/all/05350/facts.midcentury_memories_the_anonymous_project.htm

 

Top New Nature Books: “Turning The Boat For Home” By Richard Mabey

From a Cotswold Life online interview/review:

Turning The Boat For Home Richard Mabey cover“I suppose I started off with a fairly literal view of the world,” he says. “But, quite early on, it became clear to me that there was much more going on than simply the picture I was seeing; that the natural world had an agenda of its own; that it was going to live out life, regardless of how we viewed it and how we used it; and, indeed, regardless of the fancy metaphors that we used.”

Oh my goodness. Where to begin?

I could start with the ‘Praying Beech’ – a tree whose (‘whose’? The human possessive feels simultaneously wrong and yet just right) two branch stubs clasped each other like hands. Once, when the rain fell in an apocalyptic burst, Richard Mabey watched its bark melt in front of his eyes. It was, of course, no stranger to extremes of weather: one summer past, the tree had been split by lightning, bees hunkering down in its newly-created hollows. Sometime later, a storm had toppled it, leaving fungi free to colonise its delicious surfaces: knobbly coral spots; dead man’s fingers rising corpse-like from the tree’s own rot; white porcelain tufts, like Royal Worcester plates awaiting a delicate slice of egg-yellow sponge.

To read more: https://www.cotswoldlife.co.uk/people/interview-with-nature-writer-richard-mabey-1-6357450?utm_medium=email&utm_source=eshot&utm_campaign=newsletterlinknewtemplate

Top New Books: “The Seine – The River That Made Paris” By Elaine Sciolino

From an advance review:

The SeineSciolino’s keen eye and vivid prose bring the river to life as she discovers its origins on a remote plateau of Burgundy, where a pagan goddess healed pilgrims at an ancient temple. She follows the Seine to Le Havre, where it meets the sea.  Braiding memoir, travelogue, and history through the Seine’s winding route, Sciolino offers a love letter to Paris and the river at its heart and invites readers to explore its magic.

In the spring of 1978, as a young journalist in Paris, Elaine Sciolino was seduced by a river. In The Seine, she tells the story of that river through its rich history and lively characters—a bargewoman, a riverbank bookseller, a houseboat dweller, a famous cameraman known for capturing the river’s light. She patrols with river police, rows with a restorer of antique boats, discovers a champagne vineyard, and even dares to swim in the Seine.

To read more: https://elainesciolino.com/the-seine-the-river-that-made-paris