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Notable New Nonfiction: February 2018

Here are some highlights from the new nonfiction titles added to the catalog recently.

Find more reading suggestions at Books & More.

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A False Report: A True Story of Rape in America by Christian T. Miller

Two Pulitzer Prize-winning journalists present the true story of two detectives who teamed up to discern the truth about a case involving a teen who was charged with falsely reporting a rape, an investigation that revealed the work of a serial rapist in multiple states. Based on investigative files and extensive interviews with the principals, A False Report is a serpentine tale of doubt, lies, and a hunt for justice, unveiling the disturbing reality of how sexual assault is investigated today—and the long history of skepticism toward rape victims.

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The Self-Driven Child: The Science and Sense of Giving Your Kids More Control Over Their Lives by William Stixrud

A few years ago, Bill Stixrud and Ned Johnson started noticing the same problem from different angles: Even high-performing kids were coming to them acutely stressed and lacking any real motivation. Many complained that they had no control over their lives. Some stumbled in high school or hit college and unraveled. Bill is a clinical neuropsychologist who helps kids gripped by anxiety or struggling to learn. Ned is a motivational coach who runs an elite tutoring service. Together they discovered that the best antidote to stress is to give kids more of a sense of control over their lives. But this doesn't mean giving up your authority as a parent. The Self-Driven Child offers a combination of cutting-edge brain science, the latest discoveries in behavioral therapy, and case studies drawn from the thousands of kids and teens Bill and Ned have helped over the years to teach you how to set your child on the real road to success.

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Sacred Instructions: Indigenous Wisdom for Living Spirit-Based Change by Sherri L. Mitchell

A narrative of Indigenous wisdom that provides a road map for the spirit and a compass of compassion for humanity. Drawing from ancestral knowledge, as well as her experience as an attorney and activist, Sherri Mitchell addresses some of the most crucial issues of our day, such as environmental protection and human rights. Sharing the gifts she has received from elders around the world, Mitchell urges us to decolonize our language and our stories. For those seeking change, this book offers a set of cultural values that will preserve our collective survival for future generations.

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The Line Becomes a River: Dispatches From the Border by Francisco Cantu

For Francisco Cantu, the border is in the blood: his mother, a park ranger and daughter of a Mexican immigrant, raised him in the scrublands of the Southwest. Haunted by the landscape of his youth, Cantu joins the Border Patrol where he and his partners are posted to remote regions crisscrossed by drug routes and smuggling corridors and where they learn to track other humans under blistering sun and through frigid nights. They haul in the dead and deliver to detention those they find alive. Cantu tries not to think where the stories go from there. Plagued by nightmares, he abandons the Patrol for civilian life. But when an immigrant friend travels to Mexico to visit his dying mother and does not return, Cantu discovers that the border has migrated with him, and now he must know the whole story. Searing and unforgettable, The Line Becomes a River makes urgent and personal the violence our border wreaks on both sides of the line.

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Searching for the Amazons: The Real Warrior Women of the Ancient World by John Man

Since the time of the ancient Greeks we have been fascinated by accounts of the Amazons. Equal to men in battle, legends claimed they cut off their right breasts to improve their archery skills and routinely killed their male children to purify their ranks. For centuries people believed in their existence and attempted to trace their origins. Artists and poets celebrated their battles and wrote of Amazonia. Spanish explorers, carrying these tales to South America, thought they lived in the forests of the world's greatest river, and named it after them. Now, following decades of new research and a series of groundbreaking archeological discoveries, we know these powerful warrior queens did indeed exist. In Searching for the Amazons, John Man travels to the grasslands of Central Asia to discover the truth about the truth about these women whose legend has resonated over the centuries.

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Making the Monster: The Science Behind Mary Shelley's Frankenstein by Kathryn Harkup

The year 1818 saw the publication of one of the most influential science-fiction stories of all time: Frankenstein: Or, Modern Prometheus by Mary Shelley had a huge impact on gothic horror and science fiction genres. The name Frankenstein has become part of our everyday language, often used in derogatory terms to describe scientists who have overstepped a perceived moral line. But how did a 19-year-old woman with no formal education come up with the idea for an extraordinary novel such as Frankenstein? Making the Monster explores the science behind Shelley's book. From tales of reanimated zombie kittens to electrical experiments on human cadavers, Kathryn Harkup examines the science and scientists that influenced Mary Shelley and inspired her most famous creation, Victor Frankenstein.

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Black Girl Baking: Wholesome Recipes Inspired by a Soulful Upbringing by Jerrelle Guy

Jerrelle Guy is the creator of Chocolate For Basil, a vegetarian blog that has been featured on Vogue.com, Food52 and in the Boston Globe, to name a few. Her Instagram is full of stunning photography and has over 41,000 followers. Her recipes tell Jerrelle's story while urging the reader to step away from the book and submerge themselves in the senses of baking--feel for clumps in the dough, smell when the nuts are toasted, hear the hollow knock of a perfectly cooked loaf of bread. Drenched in imagery, these healthy recipes are like therapy, bringing the reader back in time to appreciate the simple pleasures of childhood using the five senses.

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The World Only Spins Forward: The Ascent of Angels in America by Isaac Butler & Dan Kois

When Tony Kushner'sAngels in America hit Broadway in 1993, it won the Pulitzer Prize, swept the Tonys, launched a score of major careers, and changed the way gay lives were represented in popular culture. Mike Nichols's 2003 HBO adaptation starring Meryl Streep, Al Pacino, and Mary-Louise Parker was itself a tour de force, winning Golden Globes and eleven Emmys, and introducing the play to an even wider public. Now, on the 25th anniversary of that Broadway premiere, Isaac Butler and Dan Kois offer the definitive account of Angels in America in the most fitting way possible: through oral history, the vibrant conversation and debate of actors, directors, producers, crew, and Kushner himself. Their intimate storytelling reveals the on- and offstage turmoil of the play's birth--a hard-won miracle beset by artistic roadblocks, technical disasters, and disputes both legal and creative. And historians and critics help to situate the play in the arc of American culture, from the staunch activism of the AIDS crisis through civil rights triumphs to our current era, whose politics are a dark echo of the Reagan '80s.

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The Rub of Time: Bellow, Nabokov, Hitchens, Travolta, Trump; Essays and Reportage, 1986-2017 by Martin Amis

The definitive collection of essays and reportage written during the past thirty years from one of most provocative and widely read writers--with new commentary by the author. For more than thirty years, Martin Amis has turned his keen intellect and unrivaled prose loose on an astonishing range of topics--politics, sports, celebrity, America, and, of course, literature. Now, at last, these incomparable essays have been gathered together. Brilliant, incisive, and savagely funny, The Rub of Time is a vital addition to any Amis fan's bookshelf, and the perfect primer for readers discovering his fierce and tremendous journalistic talents for the first time.

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Directorate S: The C.I.A. and America's Secret Wars in Afghanistan and Pakistan by Steve Coll

Traces America's intelligence, military, and diplomatic efforts to defeat Al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan and Pakistan in the years since 9/11, and how the U.S. efforts in the Afghan War faltered because of a failure to understand the intentions of Pakistan's intelligence agency, the I.S.I.'s Directorate S. This is the definitive explanation of how America came to be so badly ensnared in an elaborate, factional, and seemingly interminable conflict in South Asia. Directorate S is a forensic examination of the personal and political forces that shape world history; and Coll with unsurpassed expertise, original research, and attention to detail, brings to life a narrative at once vast and intricate, local and global, propulsive and painstaking.

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I Am, I Am, I Am: Seventeen Brushes With Death by Maggie O'Farrell

I Am, I Am, I Am is Maggie O'Farrell's astonishing memoir of the near-death experiences that have punctuated and defined her life. The childhood illness that left her bedridden for a year, which she was not expected to survive. A teenage yearning to escape that nearly ended in disaster. An encounter with a disturbed man on a remote path. And, most terrifying of all, an ongoing, daily struggle to protect her daughter--for whom this book was written--from a condition that leaves her unimaginably vulnerable to life's myriad dangers. Seventeen discrete encounters with Maggie at different ages, in different locations, reveal a whole life in a series of tense, visceral snapshots. In taut prose that vibrates with electricity and restrained emotion, O'Farrell captures the perils running just beneath the surface, and illuminates the preciousness, beauty, and mysteries of life itself.

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What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia by Elizabeth Catte

This book offers a must-needed insider’s perspective on the region profiled so vividly in Hillbilly Elegy. What You Are Getting Wrong About Appalachia is a frank assessment of America’s recent fascination with the people and problems of the region. The book analyzes trends in contemporary writing on Appalachia, presents a brief history of Appalachia and provides a corrective viewpoint, unpacking Appalachian stereotypes, and providing examples of writing, art, and policy created by Appalachians as opposed to for Appalachians.