Culture Critic

The Culture Critic is interested in “smart”, high-minded books with a distinct social focus; particularly drawn to books about music and film that puts the media arts in its context; always has a finger on the pulse of the cultural zeitgeist; wants overtly hip and more serious cool reads but not averse to humor.

Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's
By Lena Dunham, Joana Avillez (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9780812994995
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Random House - September 30th, 2014

“I’m an unreliable narrator,” Girls star Lena Dunham writes early in her memoir, a whip-smart pastiche of young adulthood. Dunham recounts the pitfalls of growing up in a jazzy voice that keeps the book fresh. Perfect for bright twentysomethings, and also for adults who want to smile down on their own youthful mistakes from a perch of maturity.

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The History of Rock 'n' Roll in Ten Songs Cover Image
Unavailable from Brazos Bookstore
ISBN: 9780300187373
Availability: Out of Print - Not Available for Order
Published: Yale University Press - September 2nd, 2014

Know a music nerd—somebody obsessed with the history of rock and roll? Get them this new book by the master of rock criticism, Greil Marcus. His inventive take on rock and roll—looking at its development through the lens of ten tracks, from Beyonce to a “song” that consists of a guitar being dragged behind a car. No rock and roll fan should be without this instant classic.

F**k: An Irreverent History of the F-Word Cover Image
ISBN: 9780007522002
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Friday Project - September 2nd, 2014

What kind of swearer are you? Do you swear in the office? Only around your friends? Do you use that most famous four-letter-word all the time, a kind of music that soundtracks your life? This book takes an irreverent—yet academically fierce—look at the world’s greatest curse word to identify what about swearing is so f**king satisfying. For lovers of smart books about crass things.

Skandalon Cover Image
ISBN: 9781551525525
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Arsenal Pulp Press - October 7th, 2014

How far does a beloved celebrity have to go before you abandon them? In this graphic novel, a rock star misbehaves, Jim Morrison-style—until his debauched lifestyle catches up with him. Maroh’s follow-up to Blue Is the Warmest Color is an allegory for our present day obsession with celebrity. An edgy work, perfect for anyone fed up with shallow pop culture.

Martin Scorsese: A Retrospective Cover Image
ISBN: 9781419710629
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Harry N. Abrams - October 7th, 2014

Taxi Driver. Raging Bull. Goodfellas. Casino. The Departed. Do you really need me to say anything else? Martin Scorsese is America’s greatest living filmmaker, and this book—featuring never-before-seen interviews and candid photographs—is the most comprehensive retrospective of his career yet. Now go home and get your f**kin’ shinebox.

Ricky Rouse Has a Gun Cover Image
By Jorg Tittel, John Aggs (Illustrator), Christopher Sprigman (Foreword by)
ISBN: 9781906838829
Availability: Special Order - Subject to Availability
Published: Selfmadehero - September 30th, 2014

A heartbroken American military deserter wanders into Shanghai and gets a job at an amusement park playing a “Chinese original” mascot: Ricky Rouse. What follows is a colorful, profane, sexy, and violent satire of American culture. Know a sardonic young person who loves poking fun at the way we live today? This one-of-a-kind graphic novel will make the perfect gift.

What I Love about Movies Cover Image
ISBN: 9781623160623
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Opus Books - September 1st, 2014

Movies have captured the world’s attention since the early days of the twentieth century, but exactly do we love about them so much? This was the question that film magazine Little White Lies posed to a series of well-known artists, including Wes Anderson, Juliette Binoche, Spike Jonze, and Quentin Tarantino. The result? A book of film lore and beautiful illustrations to delight any movie fanatic.

Who We Be: A Cultural History of Race in Post-Civil Rights America Cover Image
ISBN: 9780312571290
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: St. Martin's Press - October 21st, 2014

We keep hearing in the media that we live in a post-racial society—but how true is that, really? This hip, intelligent book charts the controversial landscape of America’s relationship with race. Using a range of sources from across the last hundred years, this book is perfect for people interested in smart discussions of race and American identity.

Thrown Cover Image
ISBN: 9781936747924
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Sarabande Books - October 14th, 2014

A young philosophy student drifts away from a dull academic event and into a mixed martial arts competition. Watching the brutal sport, she feels a sense of transcendence. In attempting to explain this feeling, Howley profiles two MMA fighters, resulting in a book that mixes journalism, memoir, and philosophical inquiry. Know somebody who thinks they dislike sports writing? Get them THROWN.

Bad Feminist: Essays Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062282712
Availability: Not On Our Shelves. Usually arrives in 1-5 Days
Published: Harper Perennial - August 5th, 2014

The Who, the What, and the When: 65 Artists Illustrate the Secret Sidekicks of History Cover Image
ISBN: 9781452128276
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Chronicle Books - October 14th, 2014

In each of our lives, somebody helps us along—props us up with moral support, works on our health, makes us coffee every day. This beautifully illustrated book is a tribute to those helpers—history’s greatest sidekicks. Learn about John Wayne’s stuntman, George Washington’s dentist, Richard Nixon’s secretary. A tribute to the unknown! For fans of quirky, alternate versions of history.

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