Here are a few new book releases this week that are worth checking out:
Our most anticipated release of this week is Brian McLaren‘s new book, Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha, and Mohammed Cross the Road?: Christian Identity in a Multi-Faith World. ERB Editor Chris Smith wrote about this new book for The Huffington Post, saying: “For all those who mourn the recent deluge of violence in our land, and particularly those who identify themselves as followers of Jesus, Brian McLaren’s Why Did Jesus, Moses, the Buddha and Mohammed Cross the Road? is essential reading. The time has come for us to repent of our hostile ways, and to immerse ourselves in all our diversity into the conversational work of imagining a new Christian identity that is marked by peace and kindness toward the other. McLaren’s work will serve well to launch us into the thick of this conversation.” (Read the full review…)
Our review is in the current print issue, which is on its way to subscribers…
Jack Kerouac has always been of much interest to us and we are particularly intrigued buy the new biography, The Voice is All: The Lonely Victory of Jack Kerouac by Joyce Johnson. Publishers Weekly gave it a starred review and said: “Johnson brings an insider’s perspective to this insightful study of how Kerouac found his literary voice. Delving into his formative years, she paints a portrait of the artist as a sensitive young man, haunted from age four by the death of his older brother, Gerard, and hampered by his family’s frequent moves. In unsparing detail, Johnson depicts Kerouac’s contradictions and self-destructive tendencies, and the recklessness of certain relationships that impeded as much as they facilitated the discovery of his true voice. Johnson excels in her colorful, candid assessment of the evolution of Kerouac’s voice.”
And finally, there is David Byrne‘s How Music Works, “[a] remarkable and buoyant celebration of a subject [Byrne] has spent a lifetime thinking about. In it he explores how profoundly music is shaped by its time and place, and he explains how the advent of recording technology in the twentieth century forever changed our relationship to playing, performing, and listening to music. Acting as historian and anthropologist, raconteur and social scientist, he searches for patterns—and shows how those patterns have affected his own work over the years with Talking Heads and his many collaborators, from Brian Eno to Caetano Veloso. Byrne sees music as part of a larger, almost Darwinian pattern of adaptations and responses to its cultural and physical context. His range is panoptic, taking us from Wagnerian opera houses to African villages, from his earliest high school reel-to-reel recordings to his latest work in a home music studio (and all the big studios in between). Touching on the joy, the physics, and even the business of making music, How Music Works is a brainy, irresistible adventure and an impassioned argument about music’s liberating, life-affirming power.
*** Check out last week’s list of new releases…
Stay tuned every Monday as we plan to make this new book releases column a weekly feature!