From America’s epidemic of gun violence and a history of the Supreme Court to a study of modern nation states, top titles will appeal to readers across the political spectrum.
A mass shooting in Santa Barbara, Calif., in late May; a few weeks later, a shooting at Seattle Pacific University, another in Las Vegas, then another in Troutdale, Ore.; inner-city gun violence that doesn’t even make the headlines. In Enough: Our Fight to Keep America Safe from Gun Violence, former Arizona Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords, who survived a 2011 shooting, and her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, ask how we can address this epidemic. As gun owners and Second Amendment supporters, the authors promote responsible ownership “while taking common-sense actions to prevent the next Tucson, Aurora, or Newton.”
America’s broken criminal justice system is the focus of Just Mercy by lawyer and activist Bryan Stevenson. The book chronicles fights on behalf of condemned prisoners by the executive director of the Equal Justice Initiative.
Of the fall titles about current wars, the most surprising may be The Invisible Soldiers: How America Outsourced Our Security by Ann Hagedorn, which studies the troubling rise of private military and security companies.
Remember Gary Hart and Donna Rice? In All the Truth Is Out: The Fall of Gary Hart and the Rise of Tabloid Politics, Matt Bai looks at how the Hart affair marked a turning point for the media and politics, after which candidates’ “character” became as important as their ability to govern.
Joan Biskupic narrates a rather more positive career arc in Breaking In: The Rise of Sonia Sotomayor and the Politics of Justice. Biskupic picks up where Sotomayor’s memoir left off, and shows how the life of the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice mirrors the ascent of Latinos in America.
Meanwhile, in The Case Against the Supreme Court, Erwin Chemerinsky argues that the Court has largely failed at its most important tasks over the past two centuries.
While June buzz is focused on Hillary Clinton’s Hard Choices, the next big political memoir may be All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life by New York governor Andrew M. Cuomo, which has a 200,000-copy announced first printing and one-day laydown.
Former ambassador Christopher Hill offers a strong rebuke to “America’s aggressive interventions and wars of choice” in Outpost: Life on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy: A Memoir. Readers will be privy to everything from Hill’s meeting with dictator Milosevic to disarmament negotiations in North Korea.
One can only imagine the potential conversation between Hill and Henry Kissinger, former secretary of state and winner of the Nobel Peace Prize. In World Order, Kissinger analyzes the current challenge of building a shared international order amid violent conflict, new technology, and growing extremism.
Perhaps the most scholarly book on this list is Francis Fukuyama’s Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy, the follow-up to his landmark study, The Origins of Political Power. Fukuyama analyzes the development of the modern nation state—from the French Revolution to the Arab Spring—as well as examining the effects of corruption and legacies of colonialism, and pondering the future of democracy.
PW’s Top 10: Politics
All the Truth Is Out: The Fall of Gary Hart and the Rise of Tabloid Politics. Matt Bai. Knopf, Oct. 7
All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life. Andrew M. Cuomo. Harper, Aug. 5
Breaking In: The Rise of Sonia Sotomayor and the Politics of Justice. Joan Biskupic. FSG/Sarah Crichton, Oct. 7
The Case Against the Supreme Court. Erwin Chemerinsky. Viking, Sept. 25
Enough: Our Fight to Keep America Safe from Gun Violence. Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly. Scribner, Sept. 30
The Invisible Soldiers: How America Outsourced Our Security. Ann Hagedorn. Simon & Schuster, Sept. 2
Just Mercy. Bryan Stevenson. Random/Spiegel & Grau, Oct. 21
Outpost: Life on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy: A Memoir. Christopher Hill. Simon & Schuster, Oct. 7
Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy. Francis Fukuyama. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Sept. 30
World Order. Henry Kissinger. Penguin Press, Sept. 9
Agent Storm: My Life Inside al Qaeda and the CIA by Morten Storm, with Paul Cruickshank and Tim Lister (Sept. 2, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-8021-2314-5). A gripping memoir from a Western convert to Islam who penetrated the core of al Qaeda, turned double agent for the CIA and British and Danish intelligence, and helped bring down some of the most wanted terrorists in the world.
Off the Sidelines: Raise Your Voice, Change the World by Kirsten Gillibrand (Sept. 9, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-0-8041-7907-2). From New York senator and rising political star Gillibrand comes an inspirational memoir and call to action for all women to get involved politically and raise their voices to make a difference in their communities and for their families.
To Make Men Free: A History of the Republican Party by Heather Cox Richardson (Sept. 23, hardcover, $29.99, ISBN 978-0-465-02431-5) traces the shifting ideology of the Grand Old Party from the antebellum era to the Great Recession, revealing the insidious cycle of boom and bust that has characterized the party since its inception. 20,000-copy announced first printing.
The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist (Sept. 9, hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0-465-00296-2). Told through intimate slave narratives, plantation records, newspapers, and the words of politicians, entrepreneurs, and escaped slaves, the book offers a radical new interpretation of American history. 25,000-copy announced first printing.
The American Way of Bombing: Changing Ethical and Legal Norms, from Flying Fortresses to Drones, edited by Matthew Evangelista and Henry Shue (Aug. 19, trade paper, $24.95, ISBN 978-0801479342) brings together military historians, practitioners, civilian and military legal experts, political scientists, philosophers, and anthropologists to explore the evolution of ethical and legal norms governing air warfare.
The First Family Detail: Secret Service Agents Reveal the Hidden Lives of the Presidents by Ronald Kessler (Aug. 5, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-8041-3921-2) investigates the relationship between the Secret Service and the presidency, focusing on first ladies and first children, and those who protect the presidential family, from candidates’ announcement to following their presidency.
John Marshall: The Chief Justice Who Saved the Nation by Harlow Giles Unger (Sept. 30, hardcover, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-306-82220-9). A stirring biography of the young republic’s great Chief Justice, who led the Supreme Court to power and brought law and order to the nation. 35,000-copy announced first printing.
Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe by George Friedman (Jan. 27, hardcover, $28.95, ISBN 978-0-385-53633-2). The author of The Next 100 Years presents a bold thesis about geopolitical flashpoints—particularly in Europe—in which imminent future crises are brewing.
Losing Our Way: An Intimate Portrait of a Troubled America by Bob Herbert (Oct. 7, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0-385-52823-8). Herbert, a former New York Times columnist, profiles struggling Americans—casualties of decades of government policies that have produced underemployment and inequality—and offers a call to arms to restore justice and the American dream.
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Political Order and Political Decay: From the Industrial Revolution to the Globalization of Democracy by Francis Fukuyama (Sept. 30, hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0-374-22735-7). The second volume of the bestselling landmark work on the history of the modern state.
When Globalization Fails: The Rise and Fall of Pax Americana by James Macdonald (Jan. 6, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-374-22963-4). Rich in historical analysis and enlivened by vivid quotations, the book recasts what we know about war, peace, and trade, and raises vital questions about the future.
Breaking In: The Rise of Sonia Sotomayor and the Politics of Justice by Joan Biskupic (Oct. 7, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-0-374-29874-6). A leading judicial biographer writes the untold story of the first Latina Supreme Court justice.
Falling in Love with America Again by Jim DeMint (Jan. 13, trade paper, $16, ISBN 978-1-4555-4982-5). Conservative leader DeMint believes that by making America small again—by turning to family and community—we can rebuild our great nation. 30,000-announced first printing.
The Accidental Superpower: The Next Generation of American Pre-eminence and the Coming Global Disorder by Peter Zeihan (Nov. 4, hardcover, $27, ISBN 978-1-4555-8366-9) examines how geography, combined with demography and energy independence, will pave the way for one of the great turning points in history, and one in which America reasserts its global dominance. 40,000-announced first printing.
The Way Forward: A New Path to Prosperity by Paul Ryan (Aug. 19, hardcover, $27, ISBN 978-1-4555-5756-1) challenges conventional thinking, outlines Ryan’s political vision for 2014 and beyond, and shows how essential conservatism is for the future of our nation. 150,000-copy announced first printing.
All Things Possible: Setbacks and Success in Politics and Life by Andrew M. Cuomo (Aug. 5, hardcover, $28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-230008-9). In this personal story of duty, family, justice, politics, and resilience, New York’s Governor Cuomo reflects on his rise, fall, and rise in politics, and recounts defining personal and political moments, as well as lessons learned. 200,000-announced first printing.
Stonewalled: My Fight for Truth Against the Forces of Obstruction, Intimidation, and Harassment in Obama’s Washington by Sharyl Attkisson (Nov. 4, hardcover, $27.99, ISBN 978-0-06-232284-5). CBS reporter Attkisson reveals how she has been electronically surveilled while digging deep into the Obama administration and its scandals, and offers an incisive critique of her industry. 60,000-announced first printing.
Enlightenment 2.0: Restoring Sanity to Our Politics, Our Economy, and Our Lives by Joseph Heath (Sept. 23, hardcover, $28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-234289-8). The coauthor of Nation of Rebels brings us slow politics: promoting slow thought, slow deliberation, and slow debate. 25,000-announced first printing.
The Pity Party: A Mean-Spirited Diatribe Against Liberal Compassion by William Voegeli (Nov. 4, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-0-06-228929-2). A scathing and reasoned critique of the politics of liberal compassion—and why liberals’ lack of interest in the results of their policies renders them unfit to govern. 25,000-copy announced first printing.
Overreach: Delusions of Regime Change in Iraq by Michael MacDonald (Oct. 1, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0-674-72910-0) examines the standard hypotheses for the decision to attack, showing them to be either wrong or of secondary importance, and undermines the argument that the war failed because of the Bush administration’s incompetence.
Inventing the Individual: The Origins of Western Liberalism by Larry Siedentop (Oct. 20, hardcover, $35, ISBN 978-0-674-41753-3). In a grand narrative spanning 1,800 years of European history, a distinguished political philosopher firmly rejects Western liberalism’s usual account of itself: its emergence in opposition to religion in the early modern era.
The Hundred-Year Marathon: China’s Secret Strategy to Replace America as the Global Superpower by Michael Pillsbury (Nov. 11, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-62779-010-9). A defense policy adviser and leading Asia expert reveals the hidden Chinese strategy fueling that country’s rise, and why we continue to misunderstand China.
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Pay Any Price: Greed, Power, and Endless War by James Risen (Oct. 7, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0-544-34141-8) reveals the hidden costs of the war on terror: from squandered and stolen dollars, to outrageous abuses of power and wars on normalcy, decency, and truth. 75,000-announced first printing.
Johns Hopkins Univ.
Democracy’s Double-Edged Sword: How Internet Use Changes Citizens’ Views of Their Government by Catie Snow Bailard (Sept. 18, trade paper, $34.95, ISBN 978-1-4214-1525-3). As digital media becomes omnipresent in our lives, it becomes more important for political scientists and communication scholars to understand its influence on the political process. The author theorizes that the Internet allows citizens a more detailed view of government.
All the Truth Is Out: The Fall of Gary Hart and the Rise of Tabloid Politics by Matt Bai (Oct. 7, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-0-307-27338-3). The former chief political correspondent for the New York Times Magazine revisits the Gary Hart affair and looks at how it changed the intersection of American media and politics. 75,000-copy announced first printing.
The Stranger: Barack Obama in the White House by Chuck Todd (Nov. 11, hardcover, $29, ISBN 978-0-316-07957-0). A behind-the-scenes account of President Obama’s White House tenure, by NBC’s chief White House correspondent. 60,000-copy announced first printing.
There Was and There Was Not: A Journey Through Hate and Possibility in Turkey, Armenia, and Beyond by Meline Toumani (Nov. 4, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0-8050-9762-7). A young Armenian-American goes to Turkey in a “love thine enemy” experiment that becomes a transformative reflection on how we use, and abuse, our personal histories.
Lords of Secrecy: The National Security Elite and America’s Stealth Warfare by Scott Horton (Jan. 6, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-56858-745-5) argues that the rise of the national security state stabs at the heart of American democracy.
They Know Everything About You: How Data-Collecting Corporations and Snooping Government Agencies Are Destroying Democracy by Robert Scheer (Jan. 6, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-56858-452-2) shows how private corporate interests and the U.S. government have undermined the balance between national security and individual privacy, and what this means for our democracy.
(dist. by Perseus)
Social Security Works! Why Social Security Isn’t Going Broke and How Expanding It Will Help Us All by Nancy Altman and Eric Kingson (Jan. 6, trade paper, $16.95, ISBN 978-1620970379) presents a myth-busting look at a critical component of the American social contract. 20,000-copy announced first printing.
New York Review Books
Blackballed: The Black Vote and U.S. Democracy by Darryl Pinckney (Sept. 30, hardcover, $16.95, ISBN 978-1-59017-769-3) explores African-American voting rights in the U.S. today, a theme Pinckney contrasts with his childhood memories of the civil rights movement of the 1960s.
Among the Ruins: Syria Past and Present by Christian Sahner (Sept. 1, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-0-19-939670-2) provides a snapshot of Syria on the eve of war, through the eyes of a young American traveling through the Middle East.
Japan and the Shackles of the Past by R. Taggart Murphy (Dec. 1, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0-19-984598-9) is a sweeping history of Japan, from feudal times to today’s global power, and from a social, political, economic, and cultural perspective.
Political Mercenaries: The Inside Story of How Fundraisers Allowed Billionaires to Take Over Politics by Lindsay Mark Lewis and Jim Arkedis (Oct. 21, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-137-27958-3). An insider’s account of the dirty dealings, backroom donations, and megawealthy donors that turned political campaigns into money races.
The End of Greatness: Why America Can’t Have (and Doesn’t Want) Another Great President by Aaron David Miller (Oct. 7, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-137-27900-2) looks at the concept of greatness in presidents—the ways in which it is essential to a nation and the ways in which it has been detrimental.
Citizens of the Green Room: Profiles in Courage and Self-Delusion by Mark Leibovich (Nov. 28, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-0-399-17192-5). The author of This Town collects his award-winning profiles of today’s most fascinating political, sports, and pop-culture figures.
World Order by Henry Kissinger (Sept. 9, hardcover, $36, ISBN 978-1-59420-614-6). Grounded in Kissinger’s deep study of history and experience as national security adviser and secretary of state, the book examines the events and ideas that formed historic concepts of order, their manifestations in present controversies, and the ways in which they might be reconciled.
Worthy Fights: A Memoir of Leadership in War and Peace by Leon Panetta, with Jim Newton (Oct. 7, hardcover, $36, ISBN 978-1-59420-596-5). The autobiography of the defense secretary and CIA director who led the intelligence war that killed bin Laden, among many important roles in a legendary career.
Right for a Reason: Life, Liberty, and a Crapload of Common Sense by Amy Jo Clark and Miriam Weaver (Oct. 30, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-1-59523-116-1). Arguing that conservatism needs a makeover, the Chicks on the Right make it clear that not all conservatives are stodgy, white men.
America in Retreat: The New Isolationism and the Coming Global Disorder by Bret Stephens (Nov. 18, hardcover, $27.95, ISBN 978-1-59184-662-8). A Pulitzer Prize–winning columnist argues that the resurgence of isolationism in the U.S. is an invitation to global disorder of a kind last seen in the 1930s.
American Insecurity: Why Our Economic Fears Lead to Political Inaction by Adam Seth Levine (Jan. 18, hardcover, $29.95, ISBN 978-0-691-16296-6) sheds light on why arguments prompting people to devote money or time to politics also reminds them of economic fears, holding them back from participating in politics.
Inside Syria: The Backstory of Their Civil War and What the World Can Expect by Reese Erlich (Oct. 7, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-1-61614-948-2). A veteran journalist with more than 27 years of reporting from the Middle East provides a vivid picture of events inside Syria, explains U.S. policy, and shows why Americans should care.
Don’t Wait for the Next War: Rethinking America’s Global Mission by Wesley K. Clark (Oct. 7, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-61039-433-8). As America emerges from a decade of wars, the military leader and global affairs expert identifies a new unifying strategy for a country too used to defining itself by its enemies abroad.
National Insecurity: U.S. Foreign Policy Making in an Age of Fear by David Rothkopf (Oct. 28, hardcover, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-61039-340-9). The author of Running the World tells the inside story of the conduct of American foreign policy during an era marked by unprecedented turmoil. 30,000-copy announced first printing.
The Strategist: Brent Scowcroft and the Call of National Security by Bartholomew Sparrow (Jan. 6, hardcover, $29.99, ISBN 978-1-58648-963-2). The political life of the influential yet elusive man who has helped shape American foreign policy over the past 40 years.
On His Own Terms: A Life of Nelson Rockefeller by Richard Norton Smith (Nov. 4, hardcover, $38, ISBN 978-0-375-50580-5). Incorporating thousands of documents and over 100 interviews, this biography profiles one of the most fascinating political figures of the 20th century.
Landslide: LBJ and Ronald Reagan at the Dawn of a New America by Jonathan Darman (Sept. 23, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-1-4000-6708-4). This work of fly-on-the-wall narrative nonfiction tells the story of how Johnson and Reagan, two men with opposing myths about America, shattered consensus politics and gave us the politics of unreality we have today.
Random/Spiegel & Grau
Revolution StartUP: How to Use Rice Pudding, Lego Men, and Other Nonviolent Techniques to Galvanize Communities, Overthrow Dictators, or Simply Change the World by Srdja Popovic and Matthew Miller (Jan. 13, trade paper, $16, ISBN 978-0-8129-9530-5). An illustrated guide to changing the world, or just your community, through nonviolent means comes from the slacker-turned-revolutionary who orchestrated the nonviolent fall of Milosevic in his native Serbia and went on to influence peaceful uprisings from Georgia to Zimbabwe to Lebanon.
Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson (Oct. 21, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-0-8129-9452-0). From a visionary legal thinker, social justice advocate, and MacArthur “genius,” this is an unforgettable journey into the American criminal justice system.
Enough: Our Fight to Keep America Safe from Gun Violence by Gabrielle Giffords and Mark Kelly (Sept. 30, hardcover, $25, ISBN 978-1-4767-5007-1). Former Congresswoman Giffords and her husband, astronaut Kelly, share their impassioned argument for responsible gun ownership.
Censored 2015: Inspiring We the People; The Top Censored Stories and Media Analysis of 2013–2014, edited by Mickey Huff, Andy Lee Roth, and Project Censored (Oct. 7, trade paper, $19.95, ISBN 978-1-60980-565-4). With the past year characterized by whistle-blowing, national security/secrecy, and the role of journalism in uncovering censorship, this is a timely moment for Project Censored’s annual yearbook.
Simon & Schuster
Outpost: Life on the Frontlines of American Diplomacy: A Memoir by Christopher Hill (Oct. 7, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-1-4516-8591-6). A memoir by a distinguished ambassador, with real-life action scenes from wars in the Balkans and Iraq to sinister North Korea.
The Invisible Soldiers: How America Outsourced Our Security by Ann Hagedorn (Sept. 2, hardcover, $28, ISBN 978-1-4165-9880-0). Former Wall Street Journal reporter Hagedorn presents the story behind the privatization of America’s national security, exposing where this industry came from, how it operates, where it’s heading—and why we should be concerned.
Can Israel Survive? by Richard Cohen (Sept. 16, hardcover, $26, ISBN 978-1-4165-7568-9). Washington Post columnist Cohen offers a journey through Jewish history (and his own), and a passionate defense of Israel’s necessity.
Mandela: My Prisoner, My Friend by Christo Brand, with Barbara Jones (Nov. 18, hardcover, $26.99, ISBN 978-1-250-05526-2). The sacrifices of Nelson Mandela’s life are recounted in vivid detail by the prison guard who became his lifelong friend.
Black Women in Politics: Identity, Power, and Justice in the New Millennium, edited by Michael Mitchell, Nikol Alexander-Floyd, David Covin, and Julia Jordan-Zachery (Aug. 31, trade paper, $34.95, ISBN 978-1-4128-5469-6) features cutting-edge research exploring black women’s political engagement.
Univ. Of California
Another Politics: Talking Across Today’s Transformative Movements by Christopher Andrew Dixon (Aug. 1, trade paper, $27.95, ISBN 978-0-520-27902-5) outlines the work of activists aligned with antiauthoritarian, anticapitalist, and antioppression politics, and discusses the lessons they are learning in their efforts to create social transformation.
(dist. by Random)
Hacker, Hoaxer, Whistleblower, Spy: The Story of Anonymous by Gabriella Coleman (Nov. 4, hardcover, $26.95, ISBN 978-1-78168-583-9) is the definitive book on the worldwide movement of hackers, pranksters, and activists that operates under the name Anonymous, by the woman the Chronicle of Higher Education calls “the leading interpreter of digital insurgency.”
The Case Against the Supreme Court by Erwin Chemerinsky (Sept. 25, hardcover, $30, ISBN 978-0-670-02642-5). A pre-eminent constitutional scholar offers a hard-hitting analysis of the Supreme Court over the past 200 years.
The Stronghold: How Republicans Captured Congress but Surrendered the White House by Thomas Schaller (Jan. 13, hardcover, $32.50, ISBN 978-0-300-17203-4) analyzes the GOP’s transformation into a strong congressional party that has struggled to compete in presidential elections.