Thursday, August 14, 2019

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Truth in Our Times: Inside the Fight for Press Freedom in the Age of Alternative Facts

David E. McCraw

In October 2016, when Donald Trump's lawyer demanded that The New York Times retract an article focused on two women that accused Trump of touching them inappropriately, David McCraw's scathing letter of refusal went viral and he became a hero of press freedom everywhere. But as you'll see in Truth in Our Times, for the top newsroom lawyer at the paper of record, it was just another day at the office.

McCraw has worked at the Times since 2002, leading the paper's fight for freedom of information, defending it against libel suits, and providing legal counsel to the reporters breaking the biggest stories of the year. In short: if you've read a controversial story in the paper since the Bush administration, it went across his desk first. From Chelsea Manning's leaks to Trump's tax returns, McCraw is at the center of the paper's decisions about what news is fit to print.

In Truth in Our Times, McCraw recounts the hard legal decisions behind the most impactful stories of the last decade with candor and style. The book is simultaneously a rare peek behind the curtain of the celebrated organization, a love letter to freedom of the press, and a decisive rebuttal of Trump's fake news slur through a series of hard cases. It is an absolute must-have for any dedicated reader of The New York Times.

Nonfiction. Call number: 342.73 McCra. View in our catalog

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The Regency Years: During Which Jane Austen Writes, Napoleon Fights, Byron Makes Love, and Britain Becomes Modern

Robert Morrison

A surprising history of the era that brought our modern world decisively into view. Though the Victorians are often credited with ushering in our modern era, the seeds were planted in the years before. The Regency (1811- 1820) began when the profligate Prince of Wales replaced his insane father, George III, as Britain's ruler; around the regent surged a society of evangelicalism and hedonism, elegance and brutality, exuberance and despair. The arts showcased extraordinary writers and painters such as Austen, Byron, the Shelleys, Constable, and Turner. Science gave us the steam locomotive and the blueprint for the modern computer. Yet the dark side of the modern era was visible in the poverty, slavery, pornography, opium, and gothic imaginings that birthed Frankenstein. And all the while, the British Empire fought in foreign lands: the Napoleonic Wars in Europe and the War of 1812 in the United States. Exploring these crosscurrents, Robert Morrison illuminates the profound ways this period shaped and indelibly marked the modern world.

Nonfiction. Call number: 941.073 Mor. View in our catalog

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Broken Stars: Contemporary Chinese Science Fiction in Translation

Ken Liu, editor

Some of the included authors are already familiar to readers in the West (Liu Cixin and Hao Jingfang, both Hugo winners); some are publishing in English for the first time. Because of the growing interest in newer SFF from China, virtually every story here was first published in Chinese in the 2010s.

The stories span the range from short-shorts to novellas, and evoke every hue on the emotional spectrum. Besides stories firmly entrenched in subgenres familiar to Western SFF readers such as hard SF, cyberpunk, science fantasy, and space opera, the anthology also includes stories that showcase deeper ties to Chinese culture: alternate Chinese history, chuanyue time travel, satire with historical and contemporary allusions that are likely unknown to the average Western reader. While the anthology makes no claim or attempt to be "representative" or "comprehensive," it demonstrates the vibrancy and diversity of science fiction being written in China at this moment.

Science fiction. Call number: SCIFIC Bro. View in our catalog

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Like a Love Story

Abdi Nazemian

It's 1989 in New York City, and for three teens, the world is changing.

Reza is an Iranian boy who has just moved to the city with his mother to live with his stepfather and stepbrother. He's terrified that someone will guess the truth he can barely acknowledge about himself. Reza knows he's gay, but all he knows of gay life are the media's images of men dying of AIDS.

Judy is an aspiring fashion designer who worships her uncle Stephen, a gay man with AIDS who devotes his time to activism as a member of ACT UP. Judy has never imagined finding romance...until she falls for Reza and they start dating.

Art is Judy's best friend, their school's only out and proud teen. He'll never be who his conservative parents want him to be, so he rebels by documenting the AIDS crisis through his photographs.

As Reza and Art grow closer, Reza struggles to find a way out of his deception that won't break Judy's heart--and destroy the most meaningful friendship he's ever known.

Teen fiction. Call number: YA FIC Naz. View in our catalog

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Spencer and Vincent: The Jellyfish Brothers

Tony Johnston, pictures by Emily Dove

Spencer and Vincent are jellyfish brothers who live together in the sea, their wet and shining home. They invented a little song which went like this:

My brother, my brother,
he's sweet, not smelly.
I love him from down in my jelly belly.

One day a wave of superior magnitude separates them! The brothers know they have to do whatever it takes to find each other again. And they'll need some help along the way...

Sometimes friends can really make a the difference. Spencer and Vincent is a story of adventures and the bond of family.

Youth easy book. Call number: J EASY Joh. View in our catalog

Descriptions and images provided by the publishers.

© 2019 William P. Faust Westland Public Library