Staff Pick

Geoff Dyer applied to be a writer in residence on board an American aircraft carrier in 2011, his carrier of destination the U.S.S. George H.W. Bush stationed off the coast of Bahrain. In two weeks on the carrier, Dyer interviews the occupants, observes daily life on board and muses on the unique qualities of the American military and indeed the American way of life, which Dyer reflects on with delight and a kind of humorous appreciation, (see: "there was something  very American about this ability to dwell constantly in the realm of the improvable superlative"). This is a witty, insightful and sometimes quite beautifully observed journey to a strange, industrial, military landscape.

Another Great Day at Sea: Life Aboard the USS George H.W. Bush Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780804170208
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - April 7th, 2015

Readers and political junkies of a certain age undoubtedly remember the lurid details of the sex scandal that ended presidential candidate Gary Hart’s political career almost thirty years ago. So what’s left to know? That was my reaction until I read All the Truth is Out (Knopf, $26.95), the fascinating new book by Matt Bai, the national political columnist for Yahoo News and formerly of The New York Times Magazine. Bai conducted lengthy interviews with all of the major characters involved in the scandal (including the leading journalists) and his book raises important questions about when and whether indiscretions by politicians constitute newsworthy character lapses that disqualify them from political office. Told in a breezy narrative, Bai’s story also corrects some widely held misconceptions about the events that led to Hart’s political collapse. This is a smart, compassionate, and eloquent book about our evolving political and journalistic culture.

All the Truth Is Out: The Week Politics Went Tabloid Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780307273383
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf Publishing Group - September 30th, 2014

All the Truth Is Out: The Week Politics Went Tabloid Cover Image
$15.95
ISBN: 9780307474681
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - September 15th, 2015

Before there was Katharine Graham at The Washington Post, there was Cissy Patterson (1881-1948), editor-in-chief at The Washington Times-Herald. The life of this Newspaper Titan (Knopf, $37.50) is colorful enough to keep readers turning all 500-plus pages of local author Amanda Smith’s insightful new biography. No more experienced than Graham was when she came to the job, Patterson was also every bit as successful, raising the Times-Herald from a lackluster low-circulation daily to the leading newspaper in our capital city. Patterson’s very personal style of journalism insisted upon the sensational and transformed the paper into a “pugnacious, tattling, picture-packed” tabloid with an enormous legal budget for libel suits. Patterson matched this with her equally flamboyant private life. An impulsive, fun-loving, and backbiting collector of personal enemies, she lived a life straight out of a Henry James novel.

Newspaper Titan: The Infamous Life and Monumental Times of Cissy Patterson Cover Image
$37.50
ISBN: 9780375411007
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Knopf - September 6th, 2011

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