English Essays
Feel Free: Essays
Feel Free
Essays
Paperback      ISBN: 014311025x
Winner of the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism

A New York Times Notable Book

From Zadie Smith, one of the most beloved authors of her generation, a new collection of essays

Since she burst spectacularly into view with her debut novel almost two decades ago, Zadie Smith has established herself not just as one of the world's preeminent fiction writers, but also a brilliant and singular essayist. She contributes regularly to The New Yorker and the New York Review of Books on a range of subjects, and each piece of hers is a literary event in its own right.

Arranged into five sections--In the World, In the Audience, In the Gallery, On the Bookshelf, and Feel Free--this new collection poses questions we immediately recognize. What is The Social Network--and Facebook itself--really about? It's a cruel portrait of us: 500 million sentient people entrapped in the recent careless thoughts of a Harvard sophomore. Why do we love libraries? Well-run libraries are filled with people because what a good library offers cannot be easily found elsewhere: an indoor public space in which you do not have to buy anything in order to stay. What will we tell our granddaughters about our collective failure to address global warming? So I might say to her, look: the thing you have to appreciate is that we'd just been through a century of relativism and deconstruction, in which we were informed that most of our fondest-held principles were either uncertain or simple wishful thinking, and in many areas of our lives we had already been asked to accept that nothing is essential and everything changes--and this had taken the fight out of us somewhat.

Gathering in one place for the first time previously unpublished work, as well as already classic essays, such as, Joy, and, Find Your Beach, Feel Free offers a survey of important recent events in culture and politics, as well as Smith's own life. Equally at home in the world of good books and bad politics, Brooklyn-born rappers and the work of Swiss novelists, she is by turns wry, heartfelt, indignant, and incisive--and never any less than perfect company. This is literary journalism at its zenith.

Zadie Smith's new book, Grand Union, is on sale 10/8/2019.
Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays
Changing My Mind
Occasional Essays
Paperback      ISBN: 0143117955
These essays] reflect a lively, unselfconscious, rigorous, erudite, and earnestly open mind that's busy refining its view of life, literature, and a great deal in between. --Los Angeles Times

Split into five sections--Reading, Being, Seeing, Feeling, and Remembering--Changing My Mind finds Zadie Smith casting an acute eye over material both personal and cultural. This engaging collection of essays, some published here for the first time, reveals Smith as a passionate and precise essayist, equally at home in the world of great books and bad movies, family and philosophy, British comedians and Italian divas. Whether writing on Katherine Hepburn, Kafka, Anna Magnani, or Zora Neale Hurston, she brings deft care to the art of criticism with a style both sympathetic and insightful. Changing My Mind is journalism at its most expansive, intelligent, and funny--a gift to readers and writers both.
Feel Free: Essays
Feel Free
Essays
Hardcover      ISBN: 1594206252
Winner of the 2018 National Book Critics Circle Award for Criticism

A New York Times Notable Book

From Zadie Smith, one of the most beloved authors of her generation, a new collection of essays

Since she burst spectacularly into view with her debut novel almost two decades ago, Zadie Smith has established herself not just as one of the world's preeminent fiction writers, but also a brilliant and singular essayist. She contributes regularly to The New Yorker and the New York Review of Books on a range of subjects, and each piece of hers is a literary event in its own right.

Arranged into five sections--In the World, In the Audience, In the Gallery, On the Bookshelf, and Feel Free--this new collection poses questions we immediately recognize. What is The Social Network--and Facebook itself--really about? It's a cruel portrait of us: 500 million sentient people entrapped in the recent careless thoughts of a Harvard sophomore. Why do we love libraries? Well-run libraries are filled with people because what a good library offers cannot be easily found elsewhere: an indoor public space in which you do not have to buy anything in order to stay. What will we tell our granddaughters about our collective failure to address global warming? So I might say to her, look: the thing you have to appreciate is that we'd just been through a century of relativism and deconstruction, in which we were informed that most of our fondest-held principles were either uncertain or simple wishful thinking, and in many areas of our lives we had already been asked to accept that nothing is essential and everything changes--and this had taken the fight out of us somewhat.

Gathering in one place for the first time previously unpublished work, as well as already classic essays, such as, Joy, and, Find Your Beach, Feel Free offers a survey of important recent events in culture and politics, as well as Smith's own life. Equally at home in the world of good books and bad politics, Brooklyn-born rappers and the work of Swiss novelists, she is by turns wry, heartfelt, indignant, and incisive--and never any less than perfect company. This is literary journalism at its zenith.

Zadie Smith's new book, Grand Union, is on sale 10/8/2019.
Lost at Sea: The Jon Ronson Mysteries
Lost at Sea
The Jon Ronson Mysteries
Paperback      ISBN: 1594631956
New York Times-bestselling author of The Psychopath Test Jon Ronson writes about the dark, uncanny sides of humanity with clarity and humor. Lost at Sea--now with new material--reveals how deep our collective craziness lies, even in the most mundane circumstances.

Ronson investigates the strange things we're willing to believe in, from robots programmed with our loved ones' personalities to indigo children to the Insane Clown Posse's juggalo fans. He looks at ordinary lives that take on extraordinary perspectives. Among them: a pop singer whose greatest passion is the coming alien invasion, assisted-suicide practitioners, and an Alaskan town's Christmas-induced high school mass-murder plot. He explores all these tales with a sense of higher purpose and universality, yet they are stories not about the fringe of society. They are about all of us. Incisive and hilarious, poignant and maddening, revealing and disturbing--Ronson writes about our modern world, and reveals how deep our collective craziness lies, and the chaos stirring at the edge of our daily lives.
Driving Home: An American Journey
Driving Home
An American Journey
Hardcover      ISBN: 0307379914

For more than thirty years, Jonathan Raban has written with infectious fascination about people and places in transition or on the margins, about journeys undertaken and destinations never quite reached, and, as an Englishman transplanted in Seattle, about what it means to feel rooted in America. Spanning two decades, "Driving Home" charts a course through the Pacific Northwest, American history, and current events as witnessed by "a super-sensitive, all-seeing eye. Raban spots things we might otherwise miss; he calls up the apt metaphors that transform things into phenomena. He is one of our most gifted observers" ("Newsday").
Stops en route include a Missoula bar, a Tea Party convention in Nashville hosted by Sarah Palin, the Mississippi in full flood, a trip to Hawaii with his daughter, a steelhead river in the Cascades, and the hidden corners of his adopted hometown, Seattle. He deftly explores public and personal spaces, poetry and politics, geography and catastrophe, art and economy, and the shifts in various arenas that define our society. Whether the topic is Robert Lowell or Barack Obama, or how various painters, explorers, and homesteaders have engaged with our mythical and actual landscape, he has an outsider's eye for the absurd, and his tone is intimate, never nostalgic, and always fresh.
Frank, witty, and provocative, "Driving Home" is part essay collection, part diary--and irresistibly insightful about America's character, contradictions, and idiosyncrasies.

Changing My Mind: Occasional Essays
Changing My Mind
Occasional Essays
Hardcover      ISBN: 1594202370

A sparkling collection of Zadie Smith's nonfiction over the past decade.
Zadie Smith brings to her essays all of the curiosity, intellectual rigor, and sharp humor that have attracted so many readers to her fiction, and the result is a collection that is nothing short of extraordinary.
Split into four sections Reading, ? ?Being, ? ?Seeing, ? and ?Feeling "Changing My Mind" invites readers to witness the world from Zadie Smith's unique vantage. Smith casts her acute eye over material both personal and cultural, with wonderfully engaging essays?some published here for the first time?on diverse topics including literature, movies, going to the Oscars, British comedy, family, feminism, Obama, Katharine Hepburn, and Anna Magnani.
In her investigations Smith also reveals much of herself. Her literary criticism shares the wealth of her experiences as a reader and exposes the tremendous influence diverse writers?E. M. Forster, Zora Neale Hurston, George Eliot, and others?have had on her writing life and her self-understanding. Smith also speaks directly to writers as a craftsman, offering precious practical lessons on process. Here and throughout, readers will learn of the wide-ranging experiences?in novels, travel, philosophy, politics, and beyond?that have nourished Smith's rich life of the mind. Her probing analysis offers tremendous food for thought, encouraging readers to attend to the slippery questions of identity, art, love, and vocation that so often go neglected.
"Changing My Mind" announces Zadie Smith as one of our most important contemporary essayists, a writer with the rare ability to turn the world on its side with both fact and fiction. "Changing My Mind" is a gift to readers, writers, and all who want to look at life more expansively.

Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish: Essays
Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish
Essays
Paperback      ISBN: 1681370867
Essays on literature, pop culture, and more from the cult novelist and critic Tom McCarthy

Fifteen brilliant essays written over as many years provide a map of the sensibility and critical intelligence of Tom McCarthy, one of the most original and challenging novelists at work today. Typewriters, Bombs, Jellyfish explores a wide range of subjects, from the weather considered as a form of media, to the paintings of Gerhard Richter and the movies of David Lynch, to Patty Hearst as revolutionary sex goddess, to the still-radical implications of established masterpieces such as Ulysses (how do you write after it?), Tristram Shandy, and the unsung junky genius Alexander Trocchi's darkly beautiful Cain's Book. The longer "Recessional" examines the place of time in writing--how writing makes a new time of its own, a time apart from institutional time--while the startling "Nothing Will Have Taken Place" moves from Mallarm and Don DeLillo to the ball mastery of Zidane to look at how art, whether that of a poet, novelist, or athlete, destroys given codes of meaning and behavior, returning them to play. Certain points of reference recur with dreamlike insistence--among them the artist Ed Ruscha's Royal Road Test, a photographic documentation of the roadside debris of a Royal typewriter hurled from the window of a traveling car; the great blooms of jellyfish that are filling the oceans and gumming up the machinery of commerce and military domination--and the question throughout is: How can art explode the restraining conventions of so-called realism, whether aesthetic or political, to engage in the active reinvention of the world?
The History of Technology Rewritten
The History of Technology Rewritten
Paperback      ISBN: 1848315724

Michael Sells brand new Imagine That series--short, popular histories of how the past didn't quite happen--launches with four titles this year.

Each book is a flight of imagination that explores how the smallest changes to history could have spiraled out of control.

Would a happy ending to Casablanca have led to a more prejudiced world? Would the death of a cat have been the most costly road accident in the history of technology?

Imagine That . . .


Imagine That - Football: The History of Football Rewritten
Imagine That - Football
The History of Football Rewritten
Paperback      ISBN: 184831566x

Michael Sells brand new Imagine That series--short, popular histories of how the past didn't quite happen--launches with four titles this year.

Each book is a flight of imagination that explores how the smallest changes to history could have spiraled out of control.

Would a happy ending to Casablanca have led to a more prejudiced world? Would the death of a cat have been the most costly road accident in the history of technology?

Imagine That . . .


'I Find That Offensive!'
'I Find That Offensive!'
Hardcover      ISBN: 1849549818

When you hear that now ubiquitous phrase I find that offensive, you know you're being told to shut up. Social discourse is now dominated by competitive offence-claiming. But how did we become so thin-skinned? This book blames three culprits: official multiculturalism's relativistic conflation of tolerance with positive recognition, narcissistic identity politics, and finally therapeutic educational interventions such as anti-bullying campaigns.

Claire Fox is a British libertarian writer. She is the founder of the Institute of Ideas think tank and a broadcaster and social commentator, appearing regularly on BBC television and radio.