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Empire of Illusion: The End of Literacy and the Triumph of Spectacle
This book is not for the faint of heart, but it really nails so much about wrong with the wonderful global economy we live in that I found it to be an ...more
Oct 19, 2009
Oct 16, 2009
Methland: The Death and Life of an American Small Town
I'm tempted to describe how the initial rush of the first chapter couldn't be replicated but that I still couldn't put the book down, and when finishe ...more
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Dec 09, 2009
On the Lower Frequencies
This book is worth the cover price just for the perfect double-sided 1/2 sheet flyer that can be made from the "Scam Punks vs.Starbucks" report on p.3 ...more
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Jun 25, 2008
Sick Planet: Corporate Food and Medicine
Very strong stuff, much needed in this age of feel-good greenwashing and corporate-friendly new ageism.

Cox is not only a very good writer but has stro
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Jul 23, 2008
The Sailcloth Shroud
As with other Williams novels I've read, this was very cleanly written, with a fast paced narrative that has plenty of suspense and bare knuckles acti ...more
Jun 14, 2009
Jun 13, 2009
Seeing Is Believing: Or How Hollywood Taught Us to Stop Worrying and Love the '50s
Biskind covers an incredible number of Hollywood movies herein, and gives the reader many of the best/worst/most incongruous lines from otherwise forg ...more
Dec 03, 2008
Nov 17, 2008
Nightmare Alley
Kudos to New York Review Books for reprinting this, and for commissioning Nick Tosches to write the introduction. Based on the amount of fascinating s ...more
Oct 02, 2010
Sep 30, 2010
Thieves' Market
A great, often grueling, but never exploitative novel about the brutal lives of working class men bringing produce to sell to unscrupulous operators a ...more
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Apr 25, 2011
If you're looking for lots of not all that interesting quotes from '70s rock and roll mag and fanzine writers on this band and this record, this is th ...more
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Apr 30, 2008
Raisin' Cain: The Wild and Raucous Story of Johnny Winter
This is an authorized biography, but to Johnny Winters's credit, he allowed Mary Lou Sullivan to include lots of unflattering details about his proble ...more
Jan 08, 2011
Jan 09, 2011
White Line Fever: The Autobiography
Very much an oral history, sort of like several nights in a pub listening to the rantings of one of the more entertaining characters you've ever met, ...more
Jan 2007
May 15, 2008
Raymond Chandler Speaking
This collection consists mostly of letters written by Chandler to various people in his life, including his publisher, fellow writers, and fans. Also ...more
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Jul 01, 2014
Giants of Jazz
This book does nothing to diminish my ongoing (platonic) love affair with Studs Terkel, but after "The Spectator" I was hoping for a bit of the musici ...more
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Dec 03, 2008
An Encounter With Haiti: Notes Of A Special Adviser
I had to read this book for something I'm writing. I wish I had asked the editor I'm working with to get a review copy. The fact that he paid money fo ...more
Jan 13, 2009
Jan 13, 2009
A Time to Be Born
Hilarious satire of New York society characters on the eve of WW2, two of them suspiciously similar to Claire Booth Luce and Henry Luce. Powell doesn' ...more
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Sep 17, 2010
Paramilitarism and the Assault on Democracy in Haiti

September 12, 2012
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Terrorizing Haiti
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Oct 03, 2012
I couldn't put this doorstop down, and I'm glad I didn't.

For those who've read it, I recommend Charles Baxter's review in the New York Review of Books
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Jan 17, 2011
The Uncomfortable Dead
Skip to the second half of following review for my take on The Uncomfortable Dead, if you're so inclined.

Call of the grisly
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Aug 12, 2010
Slingshot: 32 Postcards

star.gif Lit: Erik Drooker takes aim with Slingshot

By Ben Terrall

I met Eric Drooker when we were both callow t
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Jun 09, 2009
I Hate the Man Who Runs This Bar!
Even though I'm not a musician and don't need tips on surviving as one, I loved this book. Chadbourne gets into a lot of really great peeling back of ...more
Oct 04, 2010
Oct 02, 2010
A Bright and Guilty Place: Murder, Corruption, and L.A.'s Scandalous Coming of Age
There's lots to like in the historical survey of a rich period in Los Angeles criminal history, specifically the roaring 20s. But it's also exemplifie ...more
Aug 14, 2009
Aug 13, 2009
What’s Going On?: The Meanderings of a Comic Mind in Confusion
A very entertaining read which should make you cackle out loud if you've caught yourself swearing at advertisments on a fairly regular basis. Steel is ...more
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May 17, 2011
I Slept With Joey Ramone
Legs McNeill and Mickey Leigh did a very good job with this bio. If you read one punk rock book this holiday season, make it this one!

It's sad that ap
Dec 13, 2010
Dec 08, 2010
The Last Magazine: A Novel
Obviously the Hastings should have lived to do more than just clean up this book, but be that as it may The Last Magazine could have been improved by ...more
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Sep 07, 2014
The Duel: Pakistan on the Flight Path of American Power
Tariq Ali, reputed to be an inspiration for the Stones song "Street Fighting Man," has a commendable history of committed activism and is also a wonde ...more
Dec 13, 2008
Dec 03, 2008
Hardboiled Hollywood: The Origins of the Great Crime Films
Decharne has a lively style well-suited to the material he discusses here.
The book includes 12 chapters that look at different crime films and either
Mar 16, 2009
Mar 05, 2009
I was shocked, SHOCKED, to find that Keith actually took a few drugs in the 1960s. And even more recently!
Um, seriously, he's very unpretentious about
Nov 21, 2010
Nov 09, 2010
A Poetics of Resistance: The Revolutionary Public Relations of the Zapatista Insurgency
Conant put in years as a solidarity activist working in Zapatista territory, and then studied poetics and applied what he learned to Zapatista culture ...more
Sep 20, 2010
Sep 17, 2010
The Dagger of the Mind
Not as incredible as The Big Clock, but then how many novels are?
This is a murder mystery of sorts set in a arts colony along the lines of Yaddo, whic
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Feb 22, 2009
This is a spiffy little book about a spiffy little movie. Isenberg is a very smart, engaging writer and thankfully he didn't let himself get lost in a ...more
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May 08, 2013
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