In A Man of Misconceptions: The Life of an Eccentric in an Age of Change, John Glassie writes of 17th-century Jesuit priest and scientist Athanasius Kircher, a renaissance man who studied magnetism, Mount Vesuvius, even the blood of plague victims. The only problem? His theories were often wrong.
From medieval medicine to18th-century English "crack", gin has come a long way. But according to Richard Barnett, author of The Book of Gin, now is "the best time in the last 500 years to be drinking" it.
Charles Dickens wrote many of his greatest works in serial form, but serial publishing has fallen by the wayside since his day. Now, it's being revived online, and Margaret Atwood is publishing a future-dystopia novel called Positron in installments via the literary website Byliner.
In his 2012 book, How To Be Black, comedian Baratunde Thurston offers a humorous and poignant commentary on race in America. As part of our annual series on books we missed, Thurston shares his take on the conversations Americans have about race — as well as the ones we should have, but avoid altogether.
New York Mets pitcher R.A. Dickey is currently the only knuckleball pitcher in the major leagues. His memoir, Wherever I Wind Up, explains how his life — and career — have mimicked the unpredictable trajectory of the difficult pitch he throws game after game.
The Law & Order creator's detective fiction debut isset in New York after the killing of Osama bin Laden. Although The Intercept borrows stylistically from Wolf's television background, he says novel writing allows him "to tell bigger stories on a bigger canvas."
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