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Staff picks are available in the City
261 Columbus Ave., San Francisco, CA 94133 // 415-362-8193. Map
& Directions. You can also order them from us. See Ordering
The Amazing Adventures of Kavelier and Clay
If you're familiar with the work of Jack Kirby, Gil Kane, or Stan Lee,
you'll love this book. Engrossing account of the golden era of comics. Highly
Picked by Richard
The Bone People
Beware: this is a very compelling read. I stayed up far too many nights reading
this book! A beautiful evocation of the complexities of love and the frail,
almost impossible nature of any attempt to communicate with and/or understand
each other. Simon/Clare, the ethereal boy who animates the two other main
characters in this story, is an unforgettable portrait of the hopeless
determination with which children must confront a world over which they have no
control. You won't be able to rest until you find out his fate.
Picked by Elaine
The Business of Books
A look at the increasing conglomeration of the publishing industry and its
affect on American culture from the one time Executive Director of Pantheon
Books. Schiffrin paints a terrifying picture of an industry in which a
profit-at-any-cost mentality has largely come to dominate, at the expense of new
or interesting thought.
Picked by Eric
A Critical Romp Through the Terribly Libertarian Culture of High-Tech
This is for all of those personality-less, "I am the only one in the world
who counts," SUV-driving, red light-running, dot-commers who toss their
credit cards to all of us faceless salespeople without breaking for one second
their all-important cell-phone conversations. Yes, a book for all of those who
have never learned the golden rule, and lack the cognitive ability to make sense
of it, those who would sooner be blinded than make eye contact....
Picked by Debbie
Alan Watt's first novel is a compulsively readable, harrowing, yet ultimately
humanistic exposé of the demons that fuel the all-American thug.
Picked by Lara
Edited by Charles Simic
Master contortionist, heliocentric aerialist: Tomasz Salamun's newest book of
poetry is a lard-free must-see.
Picked by Adam
The Land, the People, God, and Chance
A snappy little socio-anthropological history of Las Vegas--I mean Nevada. The
mob. The rat pack. Nuclear testing. What more could you ask?
Picked by Jeff
Indians in Overalls
Jaime de Angulo
Indians In Overalls is a model study of modern Native Americans. Jaime de
Angulo, an anthropologist and student of languages, seems to catch the cadence
of the Pitt River Indians exactly. The structure of his narrative, with its
stretches of even observation highlighted by moments of hilarity, is an honest
lesson on who the Indians are.
Picked by Janaki
Kind of Blue:
The Making of the Miles Davis Masterpiece
A concise, well-written account of one of the most important communities of
recorded music in the twentieth century. The only difficult decision is whether
you should spend $23.00 for this book or put that money toward the purchase of
the complete Miles Davis Quintet with John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderly.
Picked by Paul
What, exactly, is the nature of spiritual ecstasy? After years of humble
religious dedication, a Carmelite nun begins to experience exalted states of
communion with the divine nature of being. When she is diagnosed with an
operable form of neurological illness, she confronts the possibility that her
visions have been physically induced. Salzman draws a loving and compassionate
picture of a woman wrestling with her humanity and her soul, and offers a
nuanced allegory of our search for the muse in the mundane.
Picked by Elaine
The Many Headed Hydra:
Sailors, Slaves, Commoners, and the Hidden History of the Revolutionary Atlantic
Peter Linebaugh and Marcus Rediker
Rediker and Linebaugh bring alive the traditions of the maroons, ranters,
levellers, and other insurrectionaries of early colonial America. The influence
of C.L.R. James, E.P. Thompson, Eric Hobsbawm, and Richard Drinner spark this
incisive work of history.
Picked by Paul
Murder in Dealey Plaza:
What We Know Now That We Didn't Know Then About The Death of JFK
James H. Fetzer, Ph.D.
"A rich and fresh collection of fascinating and darkly compelling
revelations, demonstrating beyond any doubt the existence of conspiracy and
cover-up behind the JFK assassination." --Michael Parenti, from the back
Picked by Scott
A New World:
Chaudhuri once again shows his talent for capturing the bitter-sweetness of
childhood as he tells the tale of Bonny, a young boy caught in the emotional
divide of his parents' divorce and the confusion of returning to a culture that
was never quite his but is still somehow part of him.
Picked by Mira
Rich Media, Poor Democracy:
Communication Politics in Dubious Times
Robert W. McChesney
McChesney demystifies our assumption that privatization of the media industry
and the growth of the Internet has provided us with better, more democratic
communication. Exposing what media moguls conspire to keep quiet, he shows what
has helped to centralized much of our media in the hands of a few enormous,
mercilessly profit-driven companies.
Picked by Eric
The Royal Family:
William T. Vollman
William T. Vollmann is the literary equivalent to Spengler. He is an epic
chronicler of our "plague years." Year after year, novel after novel,
he has proven himself tireless in his exploration of the human condition. Highly
Picked by Peter
"Sze offers us a world where neither emptiness nor saturation dominates.
Where chaos is as relevant as order, and where the common is as important as the
extraordinary." --from the jacket copy
Picked by Althea
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Last revision: October 26, 2000