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S.B.'s Reviews

Stef has been the cookbook buyer at Bookshop Santa Cruz for over 30 years and credits her love of good food (and good times) to being born in New Orleans. Her favorite thing in the world is to cook for family and friends.

50 Years of Ms. Edited and with commentary by Katherine Spillar & the editors of Ms.

The pioneering Ms. magazine is celebrated in this new monograph, which features pivotal articles, ground-breaking covers, photographs, and fiction. Presented decade by decade, beginning in the 1970s, it is a fascinating look at feminism and the fight for equality that continues to this day. As Representative Sheila Jackson Lee says, “Who would have believed that the fiftieth anniversary of Ms. magazine would find us in a fight for our bodies, our lives, and our dignity?” Regrettably, voices and activism are needed more than ever.  

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
50 Years of Ms.: The Best of the Pathfinding Magazine That Ignited a Revolution By Katherine Spillar (Editor), Eleanor Smeal (Introduction by), Gloria Steinem (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Katherine Spillar (Editor), Eleanor Smeal (Introduction by), Gloria Steinem (Foreword by)
$50.00
ISBN: 9780593321560
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf - September 19th, 2023

Leslie F*cking Jones by Leslie Jones

Whether you know Leslie Jones from Saturday Night Live, stand-up, or even her viral Olympics commentary, you are aware of one thing: She is hilarious. And fearless. (Okay, that’s two things.) In her new memoir, Jones walks us through some of the most memorable moments of her life and career from trauma in her childhood to landing on SNL at age 47. Despite facing vicious racism (especially in reaction to the all-female remake of Ghostbusters), she has followed her dad’s advice to “be undeniable” and created a space for herself as a Black woman in comedy.  

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
Leslie F*cking Jones By Leslie Jones Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9781538706497
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Grand Central Publishing - September 19th, 2023

Prequel An American Fight Against Fascism by Rachel Maddow

Far-right disinformation campaigns. Well-funded efforts to undermine democratic institutions. Violent insurrection. These may sound like recent events, but in Prequel, Rachel Maddow recounts the sophisticated plot before World War II to steer our nation toward authoritarianism and an alliance with the Nazis. Somehow lost in the history books as an attempt by fringe players, it actually involved a large network of influential elected officials. (Déjà vu?) Maddow, who can weave a tale like no other, first traced this rise of a radical strain of authoritarianism on her podcast. Now in book form, it is an essential read that resonates in our own disquieting times.  

—S.B.

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Prequel: An American Fight Against Fascism By Rachel Maddow Cover Image
$32.00
ISBN: 9780593444511
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Crown - October 17th, 2023

Why We Love Baseball by Joe Posnanski

As a huge baseball fan, I’m not sure I could narrow down why I love the game to just 50 reasons, but bestselling author Joe Posnanski (The Baseball 100) has done so in his terrific new book. (Technically, there are lists in categories that take it to 108—who can blame him?) Told from unique perspectives (including those of fans, umpires, and opposing players) Posnanski recounts 50 baseball moments that are either epic and seared in fans’ memories (Willie Mays’s catch) or small moments that exemplify the beauty of the game (future Giants announcer Duane Kuiper’s one and only home run). This magical book is the perfect gift for any baseball fan. 

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
Why We Love Baseball: A History in 50 Moments By Joe Posnanski Cover Image
$29.00
ISBN: 9780593472675
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dutton - September 5th, 2023

The Color of Dance by TaKiyah Wallace-McMillian

Photographer TaKiyah Wallace-McMillian’s response to the lack of racial diversity she encountered when her young daughter started ballet was to take pictures. She sent out a casting call for dancers of color and was overwhelmed by the response. Since then, she has created a popular Instagram account and nonprofit called Brown Girls Do Ballet to celebrate and support underrepresented dancers. Now, with this stunning book, she shares her beautiful images of “all hues, shapes, sizes, and different ability levels in ballet,” knowing that more people than just her little girl needed to see themselves in that space. 

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
The Color of Dance: A Celebration of Diversity and Inclusion in the World of Ballet By TaKiyah Wallace-McMillian Cover Image
$30.00
ISBN: 9780762479559
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Black Dog & Leventhal - September 26th, 2023

Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) by Sly Stone

As a child of the ’70s who religiously watched Soul Train, I certainly remember the awesome music of Sly and the Family Stone. What I didn't know at the time was how revolutionary Sly Stone's multiracial, multigendered group was. In Thank You, Stone recounts the incredible highs and lows of his life and pioneering career, from the electrifying performances and soaring music filled with joy, possibility, and freedom, to drug addiction and crashing out. It's been a wild ride, and Stone lays it all out in this gripping memoir.

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin): A Memoir By Sly Stone, Ben Greenman (With), Questlove (Foreword by) Cover Image
By Sly Stone, Ben Greenman (With), Questlove (Foreword by)
$30.00
ISBN: 9780374606978
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: AUWA - October 17th, 2023

Saxophone Colossus: The Life and Music of Sonny Rollins by Aidan Levy

Saxophonist and composer Sonny Rollins, one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time, is known for his fearless improvisation and creativity. He is also reserved, reflective, modest, and private—which is why this comprehensive biography is so special. Based on 200 interviews with Rollins, his collaborators, family, and friends, as well as unprecedented access to diaries, letters, journals, and photos, Saxophone Colossus is a highly detailed account of every recording session, gig, and collaboration of Rollins’s career. Equally important, it is an enlightening and humanizing portrait of the jazz legend who is a deep thinker devoted to spiritual enlightenment. Pick up a copy, put on Rollins’s music, and enjoy.

—S.B. 

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Saxophone Colossus: The Life and Music of Sonny Rollins By Aidan Levy Cover Image
$22.99
ISBN: 9780306902802
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Hachette Books - November 14th, 2023

Deborah Roberts: Twenty Years of Art/Work by Deborah Roberts

Joyful, challenging, poignant, and painful, the artwork of mixed-media artist Deborah Roberts is not to be missed. Her colorful collages, which combine imagery from American history and pop culture with her own painting and drawing, challenge stereotypes, especially those formed around Black children. In her images, young faces spring forth, compelling viewers to connect with the humanity of the children, first and foremost. I highly recommend this gorgeous retrospective of Roberts’s work to anyone who supports racial and gender equality. 

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
Deborah Roberts: Twenty Years of Art/Work By Deborah Roberts (Artist), Dawoud Bey (Foreword by), Sarah Elizabeth Lewis (Interviewee) Cover Image
By Deborah Roberts (Artist), Dawoud Bey (Foreword by), Sarah Elizabeth Lewis (Interviewee)
$65.00
ISBN: 9781955161107
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Radius Books - December 5th, 2023

Knitting for Olive Edited by Meredith Dros

If you’re a knitter who likes timeless design with a modern touch, you will adore Knitting for Olive! I’m swooning over the sweaters, cardigans, hats, tops, and scarves within these pages. A mother-daughter team runs the Danish brand behind this book, which is filled with 20 patterns that vary in difficulty, so there’s really something for everyone. I love that the patterns are in a broad range of sizes (XS–4XL) and that the designs seem like they’ll never go out of style. A great gift for any knitter. 

—S.B. 

Staff Pick Badge
Knitting for Olive: Twenty Modern Knitting Patterns from the Iconic Danish Brand By Knitting for Olive Cover Image
$32.00
ISBN: 9780593715826
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Krause Craft - October 17th, 2023

Chasing Me to My Grave by Bryan Stevenson

This powerful and profound book, winner of the Pulitzer Prize and now available in paperback, tells artist Winfred Rembert’s story, from the Jim Crow–era South to the walls of prestigious art galleries. Rembert survived harrowing ordeals and found solace in his artwork, which he took up at the age of 51 with the encouragement of his wife. His medium was tooled, painted leather, a skill he learned in prison. From vibrant scenes of Black life in Georgia to the brutalities of incarceration, it is impossible to not be moved by his truth-telling work. 

—S.B.

Staff Pick Badge
Chasing Me to My Grave: An Artist’s Memoir of the Jim Crow South, with a foreword by Bryan Stevenson By Winfred Rembert, Erin I. Kelly, Bryan Stevenson (Foreword by) Cover Image
$22.99
ISBN: 9781639731466
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing - September 12th, 2023

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