New Release Books by Stacy Schiff

Stacy Schiff is the author of The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams (2022), The Witches (2016), Cleopatra (2014), Véra (2011), Saint-Exupery (2011) and other 6 books.

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The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams

release date: Oct 25, 2022
The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams
A revelatory biography from a Pulitzer Prize-winner about the most essential Founding Father— the one who stood behind the change in thinking that produced the American Revolution. "A glorious book that is as entertaining as it is vitally important.” —Ron Chernow "A beautifully crafted, invaluable biography…Schiff ingeniously connects the past to our present and future, underscoring the lessons of Adams while reclaiming our nation’s self-evident truths at a moment when we seemed to have forgotten them." —Oprah Daily Thomas Jefferson asserted that if there was any leader of the Revolution, “Samuel Adams was the man.” With high-minded ideals and bare-knuckle tactics, Adams led what could be called the greatest campaign of civil resistance in American history. Stacy Schiff returns Adams to his seat of glory, introducing us to the shrewd and eloquent man who supplied the moral backbone of the American Revolution. A singular figure at a singular moment, Adams amplified the Boston Massacre. He helped to mastermind the Boston Tea Party. He employed every tool available to rally a town, a colony, and eventually a band of colonies behind him, creating the cause that created a country. For his efforts he became the most wanted man in America: When Paul Revere rode to Lexington in 1775, it was to warn Samuel Adams that he was about to be arrested for treason. In The Revolutionary: Samuel Adams, Schiff brings her masterful skills to Adams’s improbable life, illuminating his transformation from aimless son of a well-off family to tireless, beguiling radical who mobilized the colonies. Arresting, original, and deliriously dramatic, this is a long-overdue chapter in the history of our nation.

The Witches

release date: Sep 20, 2016
The Witches
Pulitzer Prize winner Stacy Schiff, author of the #1 bestseller Cleopatra, provides an electrifying, fresh view of the Salem witch trials. The panic began early in 1692, over an exceptionally raw Massachusetts winter, when a minister''s niece began to writhe and roar. It spread quickly, confounding the most educated men and prominent politicians in the colony. Neighbors accused neighbors, husbands accused wives, parents and children one another. It ended less than a year later, but not before nineteen men and women had been hanged and an elderly man crushed to death. Speaking loudly and emphatically, adolescent girls stood at the center of the crisis. Along with suffrage and Prohibition, the Salem witch trials represent one of the few moments when women played the central role in American history. Drawing masterfully on the archives, Stacy Schiff introduces us to the strains on a Puritan adolescent''s life and to the authorities whose delicate agendas were at risk. She illuminates the demands of a rigorous faith, the vulnerability of settlements adrift from the mother country, perched-at a politically tumultuous time-on the edge of what a visitor termed a "remote, rocky, barren, bushy, wild-woody wilderness." With devastating clarity, the textures and tensions of colonial life emerge; hidden patterns subtly, startlingly detach themselves from the darkness. Schiff brings early American anxieties to the fore to align them brilliantly with our own. In an era of religious provocations, crowdsourcing, and invisible enemies, this enthralling story makes more sense than ever. The Witches is Schiff ''s riveting account of a seminal episode, a primal American mystery unveiled-in crackling detail and lyrical prose-by one of our most acclaimed historians.

Cleopatra

release date: Jun 05, 2014
Cleopatra
The Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer brings to life the most intriguing woman in the history of the world: Cleopatra, the last queen of Egypt. Her palace shimmered with onyx, garnets, and gold, but was richer still in political and sexual intrigue. Above all else, Cleopatra was a shrewd strategist and an ingenious negotiator. Though her life spanned fewer than forty years, it reshaped the contours of the ancient world. She was married twice, each time to a brother. She waged a brutal civil war against the first when both were teenagers. She poisoned the second. Ultimately she dispensed with an ambitious sister as well; incest and assassination were family specialties. Cleopatra appears to have had sex with only two men. They happen, however, to have been Julius Caesar and Mark Antony, among the most prominent Romans of the day. Both were married to other women. Cleopatra had a child with Caesar and--after his murder--three more with his prot?g?. Already she was the wealthiest ruler in the Mediterranean; the relationship with Antony confirmed her status as the most influential woman of the age. The two would together attempt to forge a new empire, in an alliance that spelled their ends. Cleopatra has lodged herself in our imaginations ever since. Famous long before she was notorious, Cleopatra has gone down in history for all the wrong reasons. Shakespeare and Shaw put words in her mouth. Michelangelo, Tiepolo, and Elizabeth Taylor put a face to her name. Along the way, Cleopatra''s supple personality and the drama of her circumstances have been lost. In a masterly return to the classical sources, Stacy Schiff here boldly separates fact from fiction to rescue the magnetic queen whose death ushered in a new world order. Rich in detail, epic in scope, Schiff ''s is a luminous, deeply original reconstruction of a dazzling life.

Véra

release date: Feb 23, 2011
Véra
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER Winner of the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for biography and hailed by critics as both “monumental” (The Boston Globe) and “utterly romantic” (New York magazine), Stacy Schiff’s Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov) brings to shimmering life one of the greatest literary love stories of our time. Vladimir Nabokov—the émigré author of Lolita; Pale Fire; and Speak, Memory—wrote his books first for himself, second for his wife, Véra, and third for no one at all. “Without my wife,” he once noted, “I wouldn’t have written a single novel.” Set in prewar Europe and postwar America, spanning much of the century, the story of the Nabokovs’ fifty-two-year marriage reads as vividly as a novel. Véra, both beautiful and brilliant, is its outsized heroine—a woman who loves as deeply and intelligently as did the great romantic heroines of Austen and Tolstoy. Stacy Schiff''s Véra is a triumph of the biographical form.

Saint-Exupery

release date: Aug 31, 2011
Saint-Exupery
A fascinating account of the life of one of the century''s great eccentrics - the brilliant Antoine de Saint-Exupery. Born in 1900 of impoverished aristocracy, he swiftly developed a mania for aviation, despite his chaotic mind and total technological incompetence. He flew reconnaissance missions in the War and wrote some strange and wonderful books, including the classic children''s story THE LITTLE PRINCE, between theatrically executed airplane crashed. He died in the air in 1944, and his brief life instantly acquired mythical status. ''Every facet of Saint-Exupery''s short and dramatic life is covered in this fascinating biography. This is Stacy Schiff''s first book, but she writes with all the skill, assurance and mastery of an old literary hand. If there was such a thing as a prize for a first biography, I would nominate this book. '' Frank McLynn, SUNDAY TELEGRAPH.

A Great Improvisation

release date: Jan 10, 2006
A Great Improvisation
In this dazzling work of history, a Pulitzer Prize-winning author follows Benjamin Franklin to France for the crowning achievement of his career In December of 1776 a small boat delivered an old man to France." So begins an enthralling narrative account of how Benjamin Franklin--seventy years old, without any diplomatic training, and possessed of the most rudimentary French--convinced France, an absolute monarchy, to underwrite America''s experiment in democracy. When Franklin stepped onto French soil, he well understood he was embarking on the greatest gamble of his career. By virtue of fame, charisma, and ingenuity, Franklin outmaneuvered British spies, French informers, and hostile colleagues; engineered the Franco-American alliance of 1778; and helped to negotiate the peace of 1783. The eight-year French mission stands not only as Franklin''s most vital service to his country but as the most revealing of the man. In A Great Improvisation, Stacy Schiff draws from new and little-known sources to illuminate the least-explored part of Franklin''s life. Here is an unfamiliar, unforgettable chapter of the Revolution, a rousing tale of American infighting, and the treacherous backroom dealings at Versailles that would propel George Washington from near decimation at Valley Forge to victory at Yorktown. From these pages emerge a particularly human and yet fiercely determined Founding Father, as well as a profound sense of how fragile, improvisational, and international was our country''s bid for independence.

Benjamin Franklin and the Birth of America

release date: Jan 01, 2006
Benjamin Franklin and the Birth of America
Six months after America declared her independence, Congress dispatched Benjamin Franklin to France to solicit aid and arms for the upcoming fight. This work tells a tale of international intrigue and from it emerges a portrait of a brilliant man, as well as a sense of the fragility and improvisation of his country''s bid for independence.

Dr Franklin Goes to France

release date: Jan 01, 2005
Dr Franklin Goes to France
Six months after America declared her independence, Congress dispatched Benjamin Franklin to France to solicit aid and arms for the upcoming fight. He was seventy years old, possessed of the most rudimentary French and without any diplomatic training. But this most remarkable of envoys, who had in previous incarnations been a printer, a postmaster, a fixer, a colonial agent and who had tamed lightning, was also among the most famous men in the world. In his eight Parisian years he worked harder than he ever had in his life, charmed the French, outwitted the British spies, and stirred a passion for a republic in an absolute monarchy. It was largely through his charisma and negotiating skill that France bankrolled the American Revolution. Stacy Schiff tells a tale of international intrigue entirely from primary sources, working from a host of diplomatic archives, family papers, spy reports, and records of the French foreign service. From her pages emerges an intimate portrait of a brilliant man, as well as a sense of the fragility and improvisation of his country''s bid for independence.

Vera

release date: Apr 04, 2000
Vera
WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE FOR BIOGRAPHY • NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • From the award–winning author of The Revolutionary and The Witches comes “an elegantly nuanced portrait of [Vladimir Nabokov’s] wife, showing us just how pivotal Nabokov’s marriage was to his hermetic existence and how it indelibly shaped his work.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times “Monumental.”—The Boston Globe “Utterly romantic.”—New York magazine “Deeply moving.”—The Seattle Times Stacy Schiff brings to shimmering life one of the greatest literary love stories of our time: Vladimir Nabokov, émigré author of Lolita; Pale Fire; and Speak, Memory, and his beloved wife, Véra. Nabokov wrote his books first for himself, second for his wife, and third for no one at all. “Without my wife,” he once noted, “I wouldn’t have written a single novel.” Set in prewar Europe and postwar America, spanning much of the twentieth century, the story of the Nabokovs’ fifty-two-year marriage reads as vividly as a novel. Véra, both beautiful and brilliant, is its outsized heroine—a woman who loves as deeply and intelligently as did the great romantic heroines of Austen and Tolstoy. Stacy Schiff''s Véra is a triumph of the biographical form.

Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov)

release date: Jan 01, 2000
Véra (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov)
Winner of the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for biography and hailed by critics as both "monumental" (The Boston Globe) and "utterly romantic" (New York magazine), Stacy Schiff''s Vera (Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov) brings to shimmering life one of the greatest literary love stories of our time. Vladimir Nabokov--the emigre author of "Lolita"; " Pale Fire"; and "Speak, Memory"--wrote his books first for himself, second for his wife, Vera, and third for no one at all. "Without my wife," he once noted, "I wouldn''t have written a single novel." Set in prewar Europe and postwar America, spanning much of the century, the story of the Nabokovs'' fifty-two-year marriage reads as vividly as a novel. Vera, both beautiful and brilliant, is its outsized heroine--a woman who loves as deeply and intelligently as did the great romantic heroines of Austen and Tolstoy. Stacy Schiff''s Vera is a triumph of the biographical form.
11 results found


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