FIRST LINES FROM NEW BOOKS OUT TODAY: APRIL 23, 2012
"Jake Terri Savage is awkward, I know. Mostly they call me JT—skips off the tongue right. No one calls me Terri. That was my grandmother."
August and Then Some: A Novel by David Prete
"Train travel before the Civil War: at once technologically impressive and nearly incoherent. It was exhausting, aggravating, uncomfortable, yet, withal, far better than any existing alternative. Americans were prepared to love trains, hate trains, and be unable to live without them."
Railroaded: The Transcontinentals and the Making of Modern America by Richard White
(2012 Pulitzer Prize Finalist and Winner of the 2011 Los Angeles Times Book Prize)
"David Crockett believed in the wind and in the stars. This son of Tennessee could read the sun, the shadows, and the wild clouds full of thunder."
David Crocket: The Lion of the West by Michael Wallis
"If AIDS ever finally vanishes from the Earth, humankind will likely look back on one aspect of the epidemic as the most damaging and also the most puzzling: our near-complete failure to stop sexual transmission of the disease."
Join the Club: How Peer Pressure Can Transform the World by Tina Rosenberg
He became one of the most infamous depression-era bank robbers, but here’s how he entered the world:
"Dr. Richard S. Bradley, who rode his buggy from the nearby community of Folsom to deliver the baby at the Floyd home, charged a fee of $7.50. The Floyd’s paid every last cent, but it took five installments—two dollars initially, followed by one dollar in paper currency, a dollar and twenty-five cents worth of corn, two dollars in greenbacks, and a final payment of a dollar and a quarter that was not made until November, nine months after the boy’s birth."
—From the Michael Wallis biography, Pretty Boy: The Life and Times of Charles Arthur Floyd
"When the olive oil reached 28 degrees Celsius, the temperature at which its aromatic substances become volatile, the eight tasters removed the lids from the glasses that contained the first sample of oil, inserted their noses, and began snuffling loudly, some closing their eyes."
Extra Virginity: The Sublime and Scandalous World of Olive Oil by Tom Mueller
"Nothing is predictable about a trip down the Lincoln Highway. This is true whether travelers drive the 3,000-plus miles from Times Square to the Golden Gate or whether they make the journey eastbound. It is also true even if a traveler only goes halfway or just cruises through part of one of the thirteen states the historic highway touches. The venerable Lincoln promises the quintessential road trip for all those willing to steer clear of the banal and the humdrum."
The Lincoln Highway: Coast to Coast from Times Square to the Golden Gate by Michael Wallis and Michael S. Williamson
"Wherever he went, the man of God carried his shotgun. Like its owner, the double-barrel twelve-gauge was old and broken in places, dusty from miles of hard African road. He kept the splintered stock bound together with a length of black rubber, and he believed it might be his only protection, save for the good Lord and his American name, in a country that had never felt more dangerous."
You Will See Fire: A Search for Justice in Kenya by Christopher Goffard