Staff Pick

Alfred Hitchcock’s life, his films, and the ways in which they intersect are well trodden territories. Peter Ackroyd’s Alfred Hitchcock (Nan A. Talese, $26.95) gives a chronological overview of Hitch’s life and his work. We are guided through the filmmaker’s upbringing in Dickensian London, through war-ravaged Britain, and taken to Hollywood. Ackroyd pays special attention to the director’s Catholicism, his macabre sense of humor, and his grueling work ethic. He also details and analyzes each of Hitchcock’s films. Ultimately, this comprehensive biography shows us just how hard it is to know Hitchcock, a man who directed his life’s story with the same control he wielded in his films.

Alfred Hitchcock: A Brief Life Cover Image
$26.95
ISBN: 9780385537414
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Nan A. Talese - October 25th, 2016

Staff Pick

The moment the Chicago Cubs won the World Series, cameras converged off-field around Bill Murray, whose unwavering fandom of the tormented team heralded the end of their one-hundred-eight-year Billy Goat curse. In The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing (Random House, $26), Gavin Edwards uses The Ten Principles of Bill (my favorite being The Second: Surprise is golden; Randomness is lobster), to examine the endearing zen of this actor/comedian/everyman. In addition to highlighting these principles, Edwards attempts to reconcile Murray’s mythic man with his true identity. In doing so, the author aptly assesses Caddyshack, Stripes, and Ghostbusters as developing an onscreen persona where “the wiseass slacker gets the girl,” while revealing Murray’s off-screen identity as an actor who “throws away the script, only to improvise the best scene in the movie.” Edwards also considers the phenomenon of random Bill Murray sightings at archeological digs, weddings, and, most dramatically, at red lights—when fingers cascade to cover the eyes of a waiting pedestrian, only to disappear and reveal our beloved clown who jokingly says, “No one will believe this happened.”

The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing Cover Image
$26.00
ISBN: 9780812998702
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - September 20th, 2016

The Tao of Bill Murray: Real-Life Stories of Joy, Enlightenment, and Party Crashing Cover Image
$18.00
ISBN: 9780812988086
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House Trade Paperbacks - October 24th, 2017

Staff Pick

Let’s be honest: when a celebrity puts out a memoir it often seems nothing more than an easy way to cash in on their moment. I confess I wasn’t expecting that much from Trevor Noah’s Born a Crime (Spiegel & Grau, $28) outside of a few laughs. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Born a Crime is a revelation, and easily one of my favorite books of 2016. Noah tells his extraordinary story of growing up bi-racial in apartheid South Africa, and while there are gut-busting set pieces involving bad dates and cultural misunderstandings, the true heartbeat of this memoir is Noah’s complex and fiercely devoted mother who guides him through a childhood of painful—and sometimes violent—situations. Superstar editor Chris Jackson (Just Mercy, Between the World and Me) has worked his magic again—the prose here is raw and wrenchingly smart and it flows beautifully from one section to the next. Born a Crime is the book to take on a family vacation this year: pass it all around the cabin—everyone, from the pre-teen son to the family matriarch, will find something to connect to in this heartbreaking, hysterical, warm, and unforgettable book.

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African Childhood Cover Image
$28.00
ISBN: 9780399588174
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: One World - November 15th, 2016