Of Interest: Morrissey, The Talmud, The Occupy Movement “Explained” and The Best of Early Vanity Fair October 20, 2014 – Posted in: Content, Of Interest: Featured Books / Reviews – Tags: , , , ,


“The solution to all predicaments is the goodness of privacy in a warm room with books” – Morrissey

He is near the top of most lists ranking the world’s best songwriters and his tenure with The Smiths had a monumental impact on the 1980’s music scene yet by reading his Autobiography one has to shake their head in disbelief at the resistance his road to success has endured. The polluted record industry and corrupt legal system weigh prominently in the book. The radio stations wouldn’t play his music and an ex-Smith band mate took him to the cleaners via a less than fair trail yet Morrissey has kept the wheels in motion and has achieved a taste of the success he seemingly deserves. The counterweight to the dismal record and legal happenings that consume much of the book is the love and adoration of his fans. They are a special bunch and their energy and commitment fuels Morrissey and makes up for the isolation he also must maintain for safety’s sake.

Oh and of course Morrissey is a great reader. We all know his appreciation of Oscar Wilde but we learn his reading life also includes:  Hillaire Belloc, W.H. Auden, John Betjeman, Robert Herrick, A. E Housman, George Eliot, Edward Lear and Walter de la mare.

Published by Penguin, 2013

Buy: Powell’s | Amazon


The Talmud – A Biography: Banned, censored and burned. The book they couldn’t suppress by Harry Freedman

It contains  nearly two million words in thirty-seven volumes and covers topics as diverse as law, faith, medicine, magic, ethics, sex, humor, and prayer. In its fifteen-hundred-year history, it has been banned, censored, and burned; dissected by scholars and rabbis; probed by philosophers, poets, politicians, and kings.

“The story of the Talmud is the story of the Jewish people -a thrilling insight into Jewish culture and a devastating account of the history of anti-Semitism”

Published by Bloomsbury, 2014

Buy: Powell’s | Amazon 


occupy movement

The Occupy Movement Explained: From Corporate Control to Democracy by Nicholas Smaligo. 

It changed everything for a while and we hope it might have laid the seeds to finally change things for good. The Occupy Movement burst on the scene in September of 2011 with the occupation of Zuccotti Park in lower Manhattan. 

The book “is not a full histoy of the movement…it is an introduction to a moment, an attempt to walk the reader through some of the experiences that participants in Occupy went through, and an attempt to think about some of the broader questions about our shared political and economic life that the movement raised.”

As the author points out the book is part of the publisher’s Ideas Explained, hence the title but in keeping with Occupy Wall Street’s statement of autonomy the book is intended as an act “of speaking with, and not speaking for.”

Published by Open Court, 2014

Buy: Powell’s | Amazon | Publisher


bohemian bootleggers

Bohemians, Bootleggers, Flappers, and Swells: The Best of Early Vanity Fair. Edited by Graydon Carter with David Friend.

From its launch in 1913 till its demise in 1936 Vanity Fair was the magazine of the “modern crowd.” Launched in America on the heels of the seminal Armory show in New York the magazine became “a literary and visual treasure of the Jazz Age.” 

Check out the who’s who of contributors:

bohemian bootleggers rear cover

Pretty impressive. To be published by the Penguin Press on October 30, 2014.

Pre-Order: Powell’s | Amazon

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