Our picks this month. Click the links to order from Amazon.
Lucinda Williams’s rise to fame was anything but easy. Raised in a working-class family in the Deep South, she moved from town to town each time her father—a poet, a textbook salesman, a professor, a lover of parties—got a new job, totaling twelve different places by the time she was eighteen. Her mother suffered from severe mental illness and was in and out of hospitals. And when Williams was about a year old, she had to have an emergency tracheotomy—an inauspicious start for a singing career. But she was also born a fighter, and she would develop a voice that has captivated millions.
In Don’t Tell Anybody the Secrets I Told You, Williams takes readers through the events that shaped her music—from performing for family friends in her living room to singing at local high schools and colleges in Mexico City, to recording her first album with Folkway Records and headlining a sold-out show at Radio City Music Hall. She reveals the inspirations for her unforgettable lyrics, including the doomed love affairs with “poets on motorcycles” and the gothic southern landscapes of the many different towns of her youth, including Macon, Lake Charles, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans. Williams spent years working at health food stores and record stores during the day so she could play her music at night, and faced record companies who told her that her music was not “finished,” that it was “too country for rock and too rock for country.” But her fighting spirit persevered, leading to a hard-won success that spans seventeen Grammy nominations and a legacy as one of the greatest and most influential songwriters of our time.
An indispensable companion for all Star Wars fans, this premium quality book displays visual timelines that chronologically map key events, characters, and developments, and mark their significance.
Track crucial conflicts across the years that affect the galaxy in profound ways. Follow the Skywalker lightsaber as it passes through the generations and witness the evolution of the iconic TIE fighter across different eras. Trace the movement of the Death Star plans over the years and uncover multiple branching timelines that break down important battles.
See essential events at a glance arranged by era and drill down into details to discover major and minor events, key dates, and fascinating insights all chronologically arranged. Pore over intricate timelines on nearly every page.
Without Nebraska, Bruce Springsteen might not be who he is today. The natural follow-up to Springsteen’s hugely successful album The River should have been the hit-packed Born in the U.S.A. But instead, in 1982, he came out with an album consisting of a series of dark songs he had recorded by himself, for himself. But more than forty years later, Nebraska is arguably Springsteen’s most important record—the lasting clue to understanding not just his career as an artist and the vision behind it, but also the man himself.
Nebraska is rough and unfinished, recorded on cassette tape with a simple four-track recorder by Springsteen, alone in his bedroom, just as the digital future was announcing itself. And yet Springsteen now considers it his best album. Nebraska expressed a turmoil that was reflective of the mood of the country, but it was also a symptom of trouble in the artist’s life, the beginnings of a mental breakdown that Springsteen would only talk about openly decades after the album’s release.
From the author of the New York Times best seller Poser and the acclaimed memoir Love and Trouble, Monsters is “part memoir, part treatise, and all treat” (The New York Times). This unflinching, deeply personal book expands on Claire Dederer’s instantly viral Paris Review essay, "What Do We Do with the Art of Monstrous Men?"
Can we love the work of artists such as Hemingway, Sylvia Plath, Miles Davis, Polanski, or Picasso? Should we? Dederer explores the audience's relationship with artists from Michael Jackson to Virginia Woolf, asking: How do we balance our undeniable sense of moral outrage with our equally undeniable love of the work? Is male monstrosity the same as female monstrosity? And if an artist is also a mother, does one identity inexorably, and fatally, interrupt the other? In a more troubling vein, she wonders if an artist needs to be a monster in order to create something great. Does genius deserve special dispensation? Does art have a mandate to depict the darker elements of the psyche? And what happens if the artist stares too long into the abyss?
The year was 1967. A cinematic blockbuster exploded across American popular culture. The Dirty Dozen didn’t just reinvent the “men on a mission” war story, it blew the genre to pieces. Like its ragtag team of misfits, it defied authority, mocked the military, and still managed to deliver action, adventure, and no-holds-barred Nazi-killing. It also received four Oscar nominations, launched the careers of many Hollywood legends, and inspired generations of filmmakers like Sam Peckinpah, Quentin Tarantino, and James Gunn.
Based on exclusive interviews with the surviving cast and crew, friends and families of the stars, and other Hollywood insiders, Killing Generals is a riveting must-read for film buffs, military fans, and anyone who loves a down-and-dirty adventure tale. Detailed, insightful, and gossipy, Epstein’s homage spotlights the movie’s endless barrage of cinematic gold.
During a time when America was reeling from turmoil, Hollywood held an indelible mirror up to a changing society. Films like Bonnie and Clyde, The Graduate, Cool Hand Luke, and In the Heat of the Night would define the era. But it was a gritty, violent, darkly comic World War II movie called The Dirty Dozen that would really strike a chord with audiences—and become the year’s biggest box office success. Heading up the all-star cast were Lee Marvin, Ernest Borgnine, John Cassavettes, Charles Bronson, Donald Sutherland, Jim Brown, Robert Ryan, Clint Walker, and at his most terrifying best, Telly Savalas, propelling many of them to stardom.
In Country and Midwestern, veteran journalist Mark Guarino tells the epic century-long story of Chicago’s influence on sounds typically associated with regions further south. Drawing on hundreds of interviews and deep archival research, Guarino tells a forgotten story of music, migration, and the ways that rural culture infiltrated urban communities through the radio, the automobile, and the railroad. The Midwest’s biggest city was the place where rural transplants could reinvent themselves and shape their music for the new commercial possibilities the city offered. Years before Nashville emerged as the commercial and spiritual center of country music, major record labels made Chicago their home and recorded legendary figures like Bill Monroe, The Carter Family, and Gene Autry. The National Barn Dance—broadcast from the city’s South Loop starting in 1924—flourished for two decades as the premier country radio show before the Grand Ole Opry. Guarino chronicles the makeshift niche scenes like “Hillbilly Heaven” in Uptown, where thousands of relocated Southerners created their own hardscrabble honky-tonk subculture, as well as the 1960s rise of the Old Town School of Folk Music, which eventually brought national attention to local luminaries like John Prine and Steve Goodman. The story continues through the end of the twentieth century and into the present day, where artists like Jon Langford, The Handsome Family, and Wilco meld contemporary experimentation with country traditions.
Written and curated by DC expert Jadzia Axelrod, The DC Book of Pride profiles more than 50 LGBTQIA+ characters in detail, including Harley Quinn, Superman, Nubia, Robin, Batwoman, Aqualad, Dreamer, Green Lantern, and many more. Discover their fascinating origins, amazing superpowers, and key storylines. This title is an indispensable and celebratory companion to the DC Pride comic books.
With stunning comic book artwork and an exclusive cover artwork by renowned DC comics illustrator Paulina Ganucheau, this book is a perfect addition to the collection of any DC fan.
Mad Magazine, Daredevil, Power Girl, Vampirella, Weird Science, The Avengers, The Spirit, Mars Attacks, Superboy, T.H.U.N.D.E.R. Agents, Galaxy Magazine: These are among the works that made Wallace "Wally" Wood one of the most legendary of all comic book and science-fiction creators. Now, Vanguard continues their Woodwork, Wally Wood Classics series with new, previously uncollected Western works in, Wally Wood Cowboys & County Girls. This is the definitive collection of Wally Wood western comics, which range from six-guns blazing out molten lead to the kitschy to the risqué. Nearly 200 pages spanning the Hall of Fame creator’s career, from 1949 to 1972 with titles like Western Outlaws, Jesse James, Western Crime Busters, Frontier Romances, Hoot Gibson, Gunfighters, Red Wolf and Shattuck―most have never been collected. Plus examples of Wood's EC Comics and Marvel Westerns with commentary by J. David Spurlock.
The DC Universe wouldn't be what it is today without the legendary Carmine Infantino! Legends of the DC Universe: Carmine Infantino collects All-American Comics #95, All-Star Comics #40, Comic Cavalcade #28, Danger Trail #1-4, DC Comics Presents #73, DC Special #1, Detective Comics #327 and #332, Flash Comics #86, #90, and #92, House of Mystery #296, Mystery in Space #3, Secret Hearts#8, Secret Origins #17, Sensation Comics #87, Showcase #4, Strange Adventures #205, Superman's Girl Friend Lois Lane #89, The Adventures of Rex the Wonder Dog #4, The Brave and the Bold #49, The Flash #112 and #123, and Western Comics #73
If you were a consumer of literature in the nineteenth century, chances are the volumes in your library featured the illustrations of Gustave Doré.
From the Bible to Shakespeare, Balzac to Milton, Cervantes to Poe, Doré’s intricate, romantic, and exuberant drawings brought great works to life, and were as treasured as the stories and poetry they depicted. Furthermore, as this magnificent book reveals, he was also a skilled sculptor, painter, and cartoonist.
This book spans Doré’s entire career, with chapters dedicated to specific works such as The Divine Comedy, Don Quixote, Tennyson’s Idylls of the King, and medieval fairy tales—each featuring exquisite full-page reproductions that allow Doré’s genius for line, shading, and texture to shine through. The authors also provide a background on the techniques that Doré employed to achieve his exquisite works. Fans of Doré will appreciate this volume’s spectacular production, which features quarter binding, gold foil stamping, embossing on the cover and spine, a belly band, and silkscreen printing on three edges.
Take a tour through the colorful worlds of Marvel’s Spider-Verse in this comprehensive guidebook detailing the lives of its many web-slingers. Follow Gwen Stacy—better known as Ghost-Spider—as she jumps between dimensions visiting the countless friendly (and some not-so-friendly) neighborhood Spider-folk whom she has met in her adventures across the Marvel Multiverse. From Peter Parker to Miles Morales, from Spider-Ham to Spider-Man 2099, more than 60 of Gwen’s iconic wall-crawling colleagues are profiled here, each illustrated with amazing original art. Thrilling and vibrant, this arachnophile’s treasury is a must-have collectible for every Spider-fan!