Best Selling Books in Pop Culture - Popular Culture

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release date: Sep 05, 2017
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Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire: A 500-Year History
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “The single most important explanation, and the fullest explanation, of how Donald Trump became president of the United States . . . nothing less than the most important book that I have read this year.”—Lawrence O’Donnell

How did we get here?

In this sweeping, eloquent history of America, Kurt Andersen shows that what’s happening in our country today—this post-factual, “fake news” moment we’re all living through—is not something new, but rather the ultimate expression of our national character. America was founded by wishful dreamers, magical thinkers, and true believers, by hucksters and their suckers. Fantasy is deeply embedded in our DNA.

Over the course of five centuries—from the Salem witch trials to Scientology to the Satanic Panic of the 1980s, from P. T. Barnum to Hollywood and the anything-goes, wild-and-crazy sixties, from conspiracy theories to our fetish for guns and obsession with extraterrestrials—our love of the fantastic has made America exceptional in a way that we've never fully acknowledged. From the start, our ultra-individualism was attached to epic dreams and epic fantasies—every citizen was free to believe absolutely anything, or to pretend to be absolutely anybody. With the gleeful erudition and tell-it-like-it-is ferocity of a Christopher Hitchens, Andersen explores whether the great American experiment in liberty has gone off the rails.

Fantasyland could not appear at a more perfect moment. If you want to understand Donald Trump and the culture of twenty-first-century America, if you want to know how the lines between reality and illusion have become dangerously blurred, you must read this book.

Praise for Fantasyland

“With this rousing book, [Kurt] Andersen proves to be the kind of clear-eyed critic an anxious country needs in the midst of a national crisis.”San Francisco Chronicle

“This is a blockbuster of a book. Kurt Andersen is a dazzling writer and a perceptive student of the many layers of American life. Take a deep breath and dive in.”—Tom Brokaw

“This is an important book—the indispensable book—for understanding America in the age of Trump. It’s an eye-opening history filled with brilliant insights, a saga of how we were always susceptible to fantasy, from the Puritan fanatics to the talk-radio and Internet wackos who mix show business, hucksterism, and conspiracy theories.”—Walter Isaacson
release date: Oct 17, 2017
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How to Think: A Survival Guide for a World at Odds
"Absolutely splendid . . . essential for understanding why there is so much bad thinking in political life right now." —David Brooks, New York Times


How to Think is a contrarian treatise on why we’re not as good at thinking as we assume—but how recovering this lost art can rescue our inner lives from the chaos of modern life.

 
As a celebrated cultural critic and a writer for national publications like The Atlantic and Harper’s, Alan Jacobs has spent his adult life belonging to communities that often clash in America’s culture wars. And in his years of confronting the big issues that divide us—political, social, religious—Jacobs has learned that many of our fiercest disputes occur not because we’re doomed to be divided, but because the people involved simply aren’t thinking.
 
Most of us don’t want to think. Thinking is trouble. Thinking can force us out of familiar, comforting habits, and it can complicate our relationships with like-minded friends. Finally, thinking is slow, and that’s a problem when our habits of consuming information (mostly online) leave us lost in the spin cycle of social media, partisan bickering, and confirmation bias.
 
In this smart, endlessly entertaining book, Jacobs diagnoses the many forces that act on us to prevent thinking—forces that have only worsened in the age of Twitter, “alternative facts,” and information overload—and he also dispels the many myths we hold about what it means to think well. (For example: It’s impossible to “think for yourself.”)
 
Drawing on sources as far-flung as novelist Marilynne Robinson, basketball legend Wilt Chamberlain, British philosopher John Stuart Mill, and Christian theologian C.S. Lewis, Jacobs digs into the nuts and bolts of the cognitive process, offering hope that each of us can reclaim our mental lives from the impediments that plague us all. Because if we can learn to think together, maybe we can learn to live together, too.
release date: Sep 05, 2017
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Studio 54
There has never been—and will never be—another nightclub to rival the sheer glamour, energy, and wild creativity that was Studio 54. Now, in the first official book on the legendary club, co-owner Ian Schrager presents a spectacular volume brimming with star-studded photographs and personal stories from the greatest party of all time. From the moment it opened in 1977, Studio 54 celebrated spectacle and promised a never-ending parade of anything goes. Although it existed for only three years, it served as a catalyst that brought together some of the most famous and creative people in the world. It quickly became known for its celebrity guest list and uniquely chic clientele. From the cutting-edge lighting displays to its elaborate sets, it was the beginning of nightclub as performance art. Now, Studio 54 explores this cultural zeitgeist and gives us Schrager’s personal firsthand account of what it was like to create and run the most famous nightclub of our age. With hundreds of photographs, many of which have never been seen before, of the celebrities and beautiful people and engaging stories and quotes from such cultural luminaries as Liza Minelli, David Geffen, Brooke Shields, Pat Cleveland, and Diane von Furstenberg, this exciting volume depicts the wild energy and glittering creativity of the era. One of the most important cultural landmarks of the twentieth century, Studio 54 continues to inspire with its legendary glamour. This exhilarating volume is a must-have for style and fashion aficionados today.
release date: May 09, 2017
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Everybody Lies: Big Data, New Data, and What the Internet Can Tell Us About Who We Really Are

New York Times Bestseller

Foreword by Steven Pinker, author of The Better Angels of our Nature

Blending the informed analysis of The Signal and the Noise with the instructive iconoclasm of Think Like a Freak, a fascinating, illuminating, and witty look at what the vast amounts of information now instantly available to us reveals about ourselves and our world—provided we ask the right questions.

By the end of an average day in the early twenty-first century, human beings searching the internet will amass eight trillion gigabytes of data. This staggering amount of information—unprecedented in history—can tell us a great deal about who we are—the fears, desires, and behaviors that drive us, and the conscious and unconscious decisions we make. From the profound to the mundane, we can gain astonishing knowledge about the human psyche that less than twenty years ago, seemed unfathomable.

Everybody Lies offers fascinating, surprising, and sometimes laugh-out-loud insights into everything from economics to ethics to sports to race to sex, gender and more, all drawn from the world of big data. What percentage of white voters didn’t vote for Barack Obama because he’s black? Does where you go to school effect how successful you are in life? Do parents secretly favor boy children over girls? Do violent films affect the crime rate? Can you beat the stock market? How regularly do we lie about our sex lives and who’s more self-conscious about sex, men or women?

Investigating these questions and a host of others, Seth Stephens-Davidowitz offers revelations that can help us understand ourselves and our lives better. Drawing on studies and experiments on how we really live and think, he demonstrates in fascinating and often funny ways the extent to which all the world is indeed a lab. With conclusions ranging from strange-but-true to thought-provoking to disturbing, he explores the power of this digital truth serum and its deeper potential—revealing biases deeply embedded within us, information we can use to change our culture, and the questions we’re afraid to ask that might be essential to our health—both emotional and physical. All of us are touched by big data everyday, and its influence is multiplying. Everybody Lies challenges us to think differently about how we see it and the world.

release date: Aug 25, 2009
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Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything

Which is more dangerous, a gun or a swimming pool?

What do schoolteachers and sumo wrestlers have in common?

How much do parents really matter?

These may not sound like typical questions for an economist to ask. But Steven D. Levitt is not a typical economist. He studies the riddles of everyday life—from cheating and crime to parenting and sports—and reaches conclusions that turn conventional wisdom on its head.

Freakonomics is a groundbreaking collaboration between Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, an award-winning author and journalist. They set out to explore the inner workings of a crack gang, the truth about real estate agents, the secrets of the Ku Klux Klan, and much more.

Through forceful storytelling and wry insight, they show that economics is, at root, the study of incentives—how people get what they want or need, especially when other people want or need the same thing.

release date: Apr 27, 2010
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Predictably Irrational, Revised and Expanded Edition: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?

When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we're making smart, rational choices. But are we?

In this newly revised and expanded edition of the groundbreaking New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They're systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.

release date: Feb 01, 2006
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Marijuana Horticulture: The Indoor/Outdoor Medical Grower's Bible
With 512 full color pages and 1120 full color photographs and illustrations, Marijuana Horticulture: The Indoor/Outdoor Medical Grower's Bible is the most complete cultivation book available. The Fifth Edition of the former Indoor Marijuana Horticulture: The Indoor Bible was originally published in 1983, when it immediately became a best seller. More than 500,000 copies of the Indoor Bible are in print in Dutch, English, French, German and Spanish.

New greenhouse and outdoor growing chapters make this a book both indoor and outdoor growers will keep under thumb. The other 15 chapters (17 total) are all updated with the most current information, completely rewritten and significantly expanded. For example, Dr. John McPartland contributed an all new medical section - The books credits list more than 300 contributors and reads like a who's who in the world of cannabis cultivation.
release date: Oct 03, 2017
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Nasty Women: Feminism, Resistance, and Revolution in Trump's America

Twenty-Three Leading Feminist Writers on Protest and Solidarity

When 53 percent of white women voted for Donald Trump and 94 percent of black women voted for Hillary Clinton, how can women unite in Trump’s America? Nasty Women includes inspiring essays from a diverse group of talented women writers who seek to provide a broad look at how we got here and what we need to do to move forward.

Featuring essays by REBECCA SOLNIT on Trump and his “misogyny army,” CHERYL STRAYED on grappling with the aftermath of Hillary Clinton’s loss, SARAH HEPOLA on resisting the urge to drink after the election, NICOLE CHUNG on family and friends who support Trump, KATHA POLLITT on the state of reproductive rights and what we do next, JILL FILIPOVIC on Trump’s policies and the life of a young woman in West Africa, SAMANTHA IRBY on racism and living as a queer black woman in rural America, RANDA JARRAR on traveling across the country as a queer Muslim American, SARAH HOLLENBECK on Trump’s cruelty toward the disabled, MEREDITH TALUSAN on feminism and the transgender community, and SARAH JAFFE on the labor movement and active and effective resistance, among others.

release date: Oct 17, 2017
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Be Fierce: Stop Harassment and Take Your Power Back
A groundbreaking manifesto from journalist Gretchen Carlson about how women can protect themselves from sexual harassment in the workplace and reclaim their power against abuse or injustice.
In BE FIERCE, Gretchen shares her own experiences, as well as powerful and moving stories from women in many different careers and fields who decided they too weren't ready to shut up and sit down. Gretchen became a voice for the voiceless.

In this revealing and timely book, Gretchen shares her views on what women can do to empower and protect themselves in the workplace or on a college campus, what to say when someone makes suggestive remarks, how an employer's Human Resources department may not always be your friend, and how forced arbitration clauses in work contracts often serve to protect companies rather than employees. Her groundbreaking message encourages women to stand up and speak up in every aspect of their lives.

Gretchen also discusses why this fight will require both women and men working together to ensure that our daughters and sons will have a brighter future.

BE FIERCE is a cultural movement and a motivating testament to what we can accomplish if we collectively decide to become warriors in the path for a better future.
The time is now. Take back your life, your career, and your dignity.

Learn more at www.gretchencarlson.com.

Twitter: @GretchenCarlson
Facebook: @GretchenCarlson
Instagram: @therealgretchencarlson

A portion of each book sale will go towards Gretchen's Gift of Courage fund.

"Using your voice and speaking your truth is a step toward freedom. Be a 'Fierce' force because that's what it takes to change the world."
--Maria Shriver, Emmy and Peabody Award-winning journalist, New York Times bestselling author, and founder of The Women's Alzheimer's Movement
release date: Oct 07, 2014
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The Disaster Artist: My Life Inside The Room, the Greatest Bad Movie Ever Made
Note: Pages are cut unevenly as the trim is "gatefold" meaning pages cut at different lengths and is intentionalFrom the actor who somehow lived through it all, a “sharply detailed…funny book about a cinematic comedy of errors” (The New York Times): the making of the cult film phenomenon The Room.In 2003, an independent film called The Room—starring and written, produced, and directed by a mysteriously wealthy social misfit named Tommy Wiseau—made its disastrous debut in Los Angeles. Described by one reviewer as “like getting stabbed in the head,” the $6 million film earned a grand total of $1,800 at the box office and closed after two weeks. Ten years later, it’s an international cult phenomenon, whose legions of fans attend screenings featuring costumes, audience rituals, merchandising, and thousands of plastic spoons. Hailed by The Huffington Post as “possibly the most important piece of literature ever printed,” The Disaster Artist is the hilarious, behind-the-scenes story of a deliciously awful cinematic phenomenon as well as the story of an odd and inspiring Hollywood friendship. Greg Sestero, Tommy’s costar, recounts the film’s bizarre journey to infamy, explaining how the movie’s many nonsensical scenes and bits of dialogue came to be and unraveling the mystery of Tommy Wiseau himself. But more than just a riotously funny story about cinematic hubris, “The Disaster Artist is one of the most honest books about friendship I’ve read in years” (Los Angeles Times).
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