Memoirs from Phil Collins, Arnold Palmer, & Marina Abramovic | Audio in Advance October 2016 | Nonfiction

9781101905043__1470859300_24630Abramovic, Marina. Walk Through Walls: Becoming Marina Abramovic. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735284821. Read by the author.
The child of Communist war-hero parents under Tito’s regime in postwar Yugoslavia,  Abramovic was raised with a relentless work ethic. Even as she was beginning to build an international artistic career, she lived at home under her mother’s abusive control, strictly obeying a 10 p.m. curfew. But nothing could quell her insatiable curiosity, her desire to connect with people, or her distinctly Balkan sense of humor—all of which informs her art and her life. 

Ackroyd, Peter. Alfred Hitchcock. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735285163. Reader TBD.
Alfred Hitchcock was a strange child. Fat, lonely, burning with fear and ambition, and afraid to leave his bedroom, he would plan great voyages, using railway timetables to plot an exact imaginary route across Europe. So how did this fearful figure become the one of the most respected film directors of the 20th century? As an adult, Hitchcock rigorously controlled the press’s portrait of him, drawing certain carefully selected childhood anecdotes into full focus and blurring all others out. Here Ackroyd reveals something more: a lugubriously jolly man fond of practical jokes, who smashes a once-used tea cup every morning to remind himself of the frailty of life. 

Anbinder, Tyler. City of Dreams: The 400-Year Epic History of Immigrant New York. Recorded Books. ISBN 9781501932649. Reader TBA.
With more than three million foreign-born residents today, New York has been America’s defining port of entry for nearly four centuries, a magnet for transplants from all over the globe. These migrants have brought their hundreds of languages and distinct cultures to the city, and from there to the entire country. More immigrants have come to New York than all other entry points combined. Anbinder’s story is one of innovators and artists, revolutionaries and rioters, staggering deprivation and soaring triumphs, all playing out against the powerful backdrop of New York City, at once ever-changing and profoundly, permanently itself.

Balcombe, Jonathan. What a Fish Knows: The Inner Lives of Our Underwater Cousins. Recorded Books. ISBN 978150192404. Read by Graham Winton.
Balcombe takes us under the sea and to the other side of the aquarium glass to reveal what fishes can do, how they do it, and why. Introducing the latest revelations in animal behavior and biology, Balcombe upends our assumptions about fish, exposing them not as unfeeling, dead-eyed creatures but as sentient, aware, social—even Machiavellian. They conduct elaborate courtship rituals and develop lifelong bonds with shoal-mates. They also plan, hunt cooperatively, use tools, punish wrongdoers, curry favor, and deceive one another. 

Clancy, Tara. The Clancys of Queens. Books on Tape. ISBN 9781524703080. Read by the author.
Fifth-generation New Yorker Clancy was raised in three wildly divergent homes: a converted boat shed in working-class Queens, a geriatric commune of feisty, Brooklyn-born Italians, and the sprawling Hamptons estate she visited every other weekend. From scheming and gambling with her force-of-nature grandmother, to brawling with 11-year-old girls on the concrete recess battle yard of MS 172, to hours lounging on Adirondack chairs beside an immaculate croquet lawn, to holding court beside Joey O’Dirt, Goiter Eddy, and Roger the Dodger at her dad’s local bar, Clancy leapfrogs across these varied spheres, delivering stories from each world with originality, grit, and outrageous humor.

phil_collins_memoir__1470859349_80714Collins, Phil. Not Dead Yet. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735208988. Read by the author.
Collins pulls no punches—about himself, his life, or the ecstasy and heartbreak that’s inspired his music. He tells the story of his epic career, with an auspicious debut at age 11 in a crowd shot from the Beatles’ legendary film A Hard Day’s Night. A drummer since almost before he could walk, Collins received on-the-job training in the seedy, thrilling bars and clubs of 1960s London before finally landing the drum seat in Genesis. Soon, he would step into the spotlight on vocals after the departure of Peter Gabriel and begin to stockpile the songs that would rocket him to international fame with the release of Face Value and “In the Air Tonight.” 

Cozzens, Peter. The Earth Is Weeping: The Epic Story of the Indian Wars for the American West. HighBridge. ISBN 9781681682464. Read by John Pruden.
With the end of the Civil War, the nation recommenced its expansion onto traditional Indian tribal lands, setting off a wide-ranging conflict that would last more than three decades. In an exploration of the wars and negotiations that destroyed tribal ways of life even as they made possible the emergence of the modern United States, Cozzens illuminates the encroachment experienced by the tribes and the tribal conflicts over whether to fight or make peace, and explores the squalid lives of soldiers posted to the frontier and the ethical quandaries faced by generals who often sympathized with their native enemies.

Cranston, Bryan. A Life in Parts. S. & S. Audio. ISBN 9781508226314. Read by the author.
Cranston traces his zigzag journey from his chaotic childhood to mega-stardom and a cult-like following, vividly revisiting the many parts he’s played, on camera (astronaut, dentist, detective, candy bar spokesperson, president of the United States, etc.) and off (paperboy, farmhand, security guard, dating consultant, murder suspect, dock loader, son, brother, lover, husband, father). He chronicles his unlikely rise from a soap opera regular, trying to learn the ropes and the politics of show business on the fly, to a recurring spot as Tim Whatley on Seinfeld. He recalls his run as the well-meaning goofball, Hal, on Malcolm in the Middle, and he gives a bracing account of his run on Broadway as President Lyndon Johnson. Of course, Cranston dives deep into the grittiest, most fascinating details of his greatest role, explaining how he searched inward for the personal darkness that would help him create one of the most riveting performances ever captured on screen: Walter White, chemistry teacher turned drug kingpin.

Creighton, Margaret. The Electrifying Fall of Rainbow City: Spectacle and Assassination at the 1901 World’s Fair. HighBridge. ISBN 9781681682488. Read by Callie Beaulieu.
In 1901, Buffalo, NY, the eighth biggest city in America, wanted to launch the new century with the Pan American Exposition. It would showcase the Western hemisphere and bring millions of people to western New York. With Niagara Falls as a drawing card and with stunning colors and electric lights, promoters believed it would be bigger, better, and―literally―more brilliant than Chicago’s White City of 1893. Weaving together narratives of both notorious and forgotten figures, Creighton unveils the fair’s big tragedy and its lesser-known scandals. From a deranged laborer who stalked and shot President William McKinley to a 60-year-old woman who rode a barrel over Niagara Falls, to two astonishing acts―a little person and an elephant―who turned the tables on their duplicitous manager, Creighton reveals the myriad power struggles that would personify modern America.

Gaines, Chip & Joanne Gaines. The Magnolia Story. Thomas Nelson on Brilliance. ISBN 9781531833886. Read by the authors.
Are you ready to see your fixer upper? These famous words are now synonymous with the dynamic husband-and-wife team Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of HGTV’s Fixer Upper. As this question fills the airwaves with anticipation, their legions of fans continue to multiply and ask a different series of questions, like—Who are these people and what’s the secret to their success? The first book from Chip and Joanna offers their fans a detailed look at their life together—from the very first renovation project they ever tackled together, to the project that nearly cost them everything; from the childhood memories that shaped them, to the twists and turns that led them to the life they share on the farm today.

Ginsburg, Ruth Bader with Mary Hartnett & Wendy W. Williams. My Own Words. S. & S. Audio. ISBN 9781508226284. Reader TBA.
My Own Words is a selection of writings and speeches by Justice Ginsburg on wide-ranging topics, including gender equality, the workways of the Supreme Court, on being Jewish, on law and lawyers in opera, and on the value of looking beyond U.S. shores when interpreting the U.S. Constitution. Throughout her life Justice Ginsburg has been (and continues to be) a prolific writer and public speaker. This book contains a sampling, selected by Justice Ginsburg and her authorized biographers Mary Hartnett and Wendy W. Williams. 

51WPO7meToL._SX312_BO1,204,203,200___1470859405_90378Howell, Georgina. Gertrude Bell: Queen of the Desert, Shaper of Nations. Tantor. ISBN 9781515911852. Read by Corrie James.
Gertrude Bell was at one time the most powerful woman in the British Empire: the driving force behind the creation of modern-day Iraq. Born in 1868 into a world of privilege, Bell turned her back on Victorian society, choosing to read history at Oxford and going on to become an archaeologist, spy, Arabist, linguist, author, poet, photographer, and legendary mountaineer. Her passion was the desert, and her vast knowledge of the region made her indispensable to the Cairo Intelligence Office of the British government during World War I. She advised the Viceroy of India; then, as an army major, she traveled to the front lines in Mesopotamia. There, she supported the creation of an autonomous Arab nation for Iraq, promoting and manipulating the election of King Faisal to the throne. 

Johnson, Albert “Prodigy” & Kathy Iandoli. Commissary Kitchen: My Infamous Prison Cookbook. Blackstone. ISBN 9781504746885. Reader TBA.
Meals are perhaps the most important aspect of prison life. They keep inmates alive, both physically and emotionally, as mess halls and common areas provide a level of social interaction in an otherwise lonely situation. Johnson served three and a half years in prison, and during that time his focus was on his health—an almost impossible feat behind bars, where many inmates often enter the prison system healthy but leave with diabetes and hypertension. Meal prep in prison is very limited, so while this work appeals to anyone who has served time or is curious about prison life, it also speaks to those who prepare food with limited access to various cooking luxuries.

Macintyre, Ben. Rogue Heroes: The History of the SAS, Britain’s Secret Special Forces Unit That Sabotaged the Nazis and Changed the Nature of War. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735288119. Read by the author.
Britain’s Special Air Service—or SAS—was the brainchild of David Stirling, a young, gadabout aristocrat whose aimlessness in early life belied a remarkable strategic mind. Where most of his colleagues looked at a battlefield map of World War II’s African theater and saw a protracted struggle with Rommel’s desert forces, Stirling saw an opportunity: given a small number of elite, well-trained men, he could parachute behind enemy lines and sabotage their airplanes and war material. Paired with his constitutional opposite, the disciplined martinet Jock Lewes, Stirling assembled a revolutionary fighting force that would upend not just the balance of the war, but the nature of combat itself. He faced no little resistance from those who found his tactics ungentlemanly or beyond the pale, but in the SAS’s remarkable exploits facing the Nazis in the Africa and then on the Continent can be found the seeds of nearly all special forces units that would follow.

Macy, Beth. Truevine: Two Brothers, a Kidnapping, and a Mother’s Quest; A True Story of the Jim Crow South. Hachette Audio. ISBN 9781478942528. Reader TBA.
Truevine, Virginia, 1899. Captured into the circus, George and Willie Muse performed for royalty at Buckingham Palace and headlined more than a dozen sold-out shows at New York’s Madison Square Garden. They were global superstars in a pre-broadcast era. But the very root of their success was in the color of their skin and in the outrageous caricatures they were forced to assume. Back home, their mother never accepted that they were gone and spent 28 years trying to get them back.

Mitchell, Greg. The Tunnels: Escapes Under the Berlin Wall and the Historic Films the JFK White House Tried to Kill. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735285866. Read by John Lee.
In the summer of 1962, one year after East German Communists built the Berlin Wall, a group of daring young West Germans came up with a plan. They would risk prison, Stasi torture, even death to liberate friends, lovers, and strangers in East Berlin by digging tunnels under the Wall. Among the tunnelers and escape helpers were a legendary cyclist, an American student from Stanford, and an engineer who would later help build the tunnel under the English Channel. Then two U.S. television networks, NBC and CBS, heard about the secret projects, and raced to be first to air a spectacular “inside tunnel” special on the human will for freedom. The networks funded two separate tunnels in return for exclusive rights to film the escapes. In response, President John F. Kennedy and Secretary of State Dean Rusk, wary of anything that might raise tensions and force a military confrontation with the Soviets, maneuvered to quash both documentaries.  

417bIdw83pL._SX327_BO1,204,203,200___1470859512_34287Morrison, Simon. Bolshoi Confidential: Secrets of the Russian Ballet–From the Rule of the Tsars to Today. HighBridge. ISBN 9781681683126. Read by J. Paul Boehmer.
On January 17, 2013, a hooded assailant hurled acid into the face of the artistic director of the Bolshoi Ballet, making international headlines. A lead soloist, enraged by institutional power struggles, later confessed to masterminding the crime. The scandal, though shocking, is not an anomaly in the turbulent and tormented yet magnificent history of the Bolshoi. Morrison reveals the ballet as a crucible of art and politics, beginning with the disreputable inception of the theater in 1776 and proceeding through the era of imperial rule, the chaos of revolution, the oppressive Soviet years, and the recent $680 million renovation project. 

Offerman, Nick. Good Clean Fun: Misadventures in Sawdust at Offerman Woodshop. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780451485014. Read by the author.
Captained by actor, comedian, and writer Nick Offerman, Offerman Woodshop produces not only fine handcrafted furniture, but also fun stuff—kazoos, baseball bats, ukuleles, even mustache combs. Now Nick and his ragtag crew of champions want to share their experiences of working at the Woodshop, tell you all about their passion for the discipline of woodworking, and teach you how to make a handful of their most popular projects along the way. Listeners will also find humorous essays, odes to Offerman’s own woodworking heroes, insights into the ethos of woodworking in modern America, and other assorted tomfoolery.  

Palmer, Arnold. A Life Well Played: My Stories. Macmillan Audio. ISBN 9781427278616. Reader TBA.
While other golfers have won more tournaments than Arnold Palmer has, no one has won more fans around the world and no player has had a bigger impact on the sport. In fact, Palmer is considered by many to be the most important golfer in history. As a follow-up to his 1999 autobiography, Palmer takes stock of the many experiences of his life, bringing new details and insights to some familiar stories and sharing new ones.

Prud’homme, Alex. The French Chef in America: Julia Child’s Second Act. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780399564840. Read by the author.
Julia Child is synonymous with French cooking, but her legacy runs much deeper. Now, her great-nephew and My Life in France coauthor vividly recounts the myriad ways in which she profoundly shaped how we eat today. He shows us Child in the aftermath of the publication of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, suddenly finding herself America’s first lady of French food and under considerable pressure to embrace her new mantle. We see her dealing with difficult colleagues and the challenges of fame, ultimately using her newfound celebrity to create what would become a totally new type of food television.

Reynolds, Simon. Shock and Awe: Glam Rock and Its Legacy, from the Seventies to the Twenty-First Century. Blackstone. ISBN 9781504735506. Reader TBA.
Spearheaded by David Bowie, Alice Cooper, T. Rex, and Roxy Music, glam rock reveled in artifice and spectacle. Reacting against the hairy, denim-clad rock bands of the late sixties, glam was the first true teenage rampage of the new decade. Reynolds explores how artists like Lou Reed, New York Dolls, and Queen broke with the hippie generation, celebrating illusion and artifice over truth and authenticity. Probing the genre’s major themes—stardom, androgyny, image, decadence, fandom, apocalypse—Reynolds tracks glam’s legacy as it unfolded in subsequent decades, from eighties art-pop icons like Kate Bush through to 21-century idols of outrage such as Lady Gaga.

9781631490101__1470859577_92301Skal, David J. Something in the Blood: The Untold Story of Bram Stoker, the Man Who Wrote Dracula. HighBridge. ISBN 9781681682525. Read by James Patrick Cronin.
Skal exhumes the inner world and strange genius of the writer who conjured an undying cultural icon. Stoker was inexplicably paralyzed as a boy, and his story unfolds against a backdrop of Victorian medical mysteries and horrors: cholera and famine fever, childhood opium abuse, frantic bloodletting, mesmeric quack cures, and the gnawing obsession with “bad blood” that informs every page of Dracula. Stoker’s ambiguous sexuality is explored through his lifelong acquaintance and romantic rival, Oscar Wilde, who emerges as Stoker’s repressed shadow side―a doppelgänger worthy of a gothic novel. The psychosexual dimensions of Stoker’s passionate youthful correspondence with Walt Whitman, his punishing work ethic, and his slavish adoration of the actor Sir Henry Irving are examined in splendidly gothic detail.

Stewart, Alison. Junk: Digging Through America’s Love Affair with Stuff. Brilliance. ISBN 9781536610093. Reader TBA.
Junk details Stewart’s three-year investigation into America’s stuff. She rides along with junk removal teams like Trash Daddy, Annie Haul, and Junk Vets. She goes backstage at Antiques Roadshow and learns what makes for compelling junk-based television with the executive producer of Pawn Stars. And she even investigates the growing problem of space junk—23,000 pieces of man-made debris orbiting the planet at 17,500 miles per hour, threatening both satellites and human space exploration. But it’s not all dire. Listeners will also learn that there are creative solutions to America’s crushing consumer culture. 

Tolinski, Brad & Alad di Perna. Play It Loud: An Epic History of the Style, Sound, and Revolution of the Electric Guitar. Books on Tape. ISBN 9780735285514. Reader TBA.
The authors use 12 landmark guitars to illustrate the conflict and passion the instruments have inspired. Some of the most significant social movements of the 20th century are indebted to the guitar: It was an essential element in the fight for racial equality in the entertainment industry; a mirror to the rise of the teenager as social force; a linchpin of punk’s sound and ethos. And today the guitar has come full circle, with contemporary titans such as Jack White of The White Stripes, Annie Clark (aka St. Vincent), and Dan Auerbach of The Black Keys bringing some of the earliest electric guitar forms back to the limelight.

Urasek, Lauren. Popular: The Ups and Downs of Online Dating from the Most Popular Girl in New York City. Brilliance. ISBN 9781536610314. Reader TBA.
With more than 15,000 four- and five-star ratings, an average of 35 messages per day, and hundreds of thousands of profile views from interested suitors, Urasek was dubbed the most sought-after woman in the city by New York magazine. She then started a popular Tumblr detailing her experiences with Prince Charmings (and Not-So-Charmings) and now tells all in a series of frank, funny essays about the ups and downs of dating in the city that never sleeps.

Weiner, Jennifer. Hungry Heart: Adventures in Life, Love, and Writing. S. & S. Audio. ISBN 9781442361454. Read by the author.
No matter what was happening in Weiner’s life—whether good, bad, or very, very ugly—her mother, Fran, would say the same thing: it’s all material. Jennifer grew up as an outsider in her picturesque Connecticut hometown (“a Lane Bryant outtake in an Abercrombie & Fitch catalogue”) and at her Ivy League college, but finally found her people in newsrooms in central Pennsylvania and Philadelphia, and her voice as a novelist and New York Times columnist. In her first essay collection, no subject is off-limits: sex, weight, envy, money, the reality of life with a newborn, her mom’s newfound lesbianism, and her estranged father’s death.

9781408839768__1470859628_58703Wilson, Frances. Guilty Thing: A Life of Thomas De Quincey. Blackstone. ISBN 9781504797818. Reader TBA.
Thomas De Quincey—opium eater, celebrity journalist, and professional doppelgänger—modeled his character on Coleridge and his sensibility on Wordsworth; De Quincey took over the latter’s cottage in Grasmere and turned it into an opium den. There, increasingly detached from the world, he nurtured his growing hatred of his former idols and his obsession with murder as one of the fine arts. Though De Quincey may never have felt the equal of the giants of romantic literature, the writing style he pioneered—scripted and sculptured emotional memoir—would inspire generations of writers, including Dickens, Dostoevsky, and Virginia Woolf. James Joyce knew whole pages of his work by heart.

Younge, Gary. Another Day in the Death of America: A Chronicle of Ten Short Lives. Blackstone. ISBN 9781504741415. Read by Mirron Willis.
Here Younge tells the stories of the lives lost during the course of a single day in the United States. It could have been any day, but Younge has chosen November 23, 2013. From Jaiden Dixon (9), shot point-blank by his mother’s ex-boyfriend on his doorstep in Ohio, to Pedro Dado Cortez (16), shot by an enemy gang on a street corner in California, the narrative crisscrosses the country over a period of 24 hours to reveal the powerful human stories behind the statistics. Far from a dry account of gun policy in the United States or a polemic about the dangers of gun violence, the book is a gripping chronicle of an ordinary but deadly day in American life, and a series of character portraits of young people taken from us far too soon and those they left behind. 

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Stephanie Klose About Stephanie Klose

Stephanie Klose (sklose@mediasourceinc.com, @sklose on Twitter) is Media Editor, Library Journal.

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