Top 10

AI Snake Oil: What Artificial Intelligence Can Do, What It Can’t, and How to Tell the Difference

Arvind Narayanan and Sayash Kapoor. Princeton Univ., Sept. 24 ($24.95, ISBN 978-0-691-24913-1)

Narayanan and Kapoor explore the capabilities and shortcomings of AI with the aim of debunking overhyped software and exposing wrongheaded applications in the banking, education, and insurance industries.

The Elements of Marie Curie: How the Glow of Radium Lit a Path for Women in Science

Dava Sobel. Atlantic Monthly, Oct. 8 ($28, ISBN 978-0-8021-6382-0)

The Longitude author examines the career and legacy of Marie Curie through the lens of the women scientists she trained and inspired.

Ingenious: A Biography of Benjamin Franklin, Scientist

Richard Munson. Norton, Nov. 12 ($29.99, ISBN 978-0-393-88223-0)

Biographer Munson traces the life of the founding father with a focus on his scientific inquiries into chemical bonds, electricity, and weather patterns.

Life as No One Knows It: The Physics of Life’s Emergence

Sara Imari Walker. Riverhead, Aug. 6 ($29, ISBN 978-0-593-19189-7)

Life-forms (terrestrial or, hypothetically, alien) can be recognized by the complexity of the molecular and chemical processes required to create them, argues astrobiologist Walker.

Linguaphile: A Life of Language Love

Julie Sedivy. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Oct. 15 ($29, ISBN 978-0-374-60183-6)

Linguist Sedivy mixes personal anecdotes, scientific research, and cultural commentary to explore the roles that language plays in people’s lives.

Mindless: The Human Condition in the Machine Age

Robert Skidelsky. Other Press, Sept. 24 ($29.99, ISBN 978-1-59051-797-0)

Despite predictions throughout history that new technologies will usher in utopia, they more often end up reinforcing existing power structures, according to economist Skidelsky.

Revenge of the Tipping Point: Overstories, Superspreaders, and the Rise of Social Engineering

Malcolm Gladwell. Little, Brown, Oct. 15 ($30, ISBN 978-0-316-57580-5)

In this follow-up to 2000’s The Tipping Point, Gladwell explores the factors that drive surges in bank robberies, teen suicides, and other phenomena. 1,000,000-copy announced first printing.

Nexus: A Brief History of Information Networks from the Stone Age to AI

Yuval Noah Harari. Random House, Sept. 10 ($35, ISBN 978-0-593-73422-3)

The Sapiens author studies how the transfer and availability of information has shaped societies for tens of thousands of years.

The Serviceberry: Abundance and Reciprocity in the Natural World

Robin Wall Kimmerer, illus. by John Burgoyne. Scribner, Nov. 19 ($20, ISBN 978-1-6680-7224-0)

Serviceberry trees’ complex relationships with their surroundings model how humans might more sustainably interact with the environment, according to the Braiding Sweetgrass author.

Turning to Stone: Discovering the Subtle Wisdom of Rocks

Marcia Bjornerud. Flatiron, Aug. 13 ($29.99, ISBN 978-1-250-87589-1)

Rocks play an active role in the functioning of the planet, contends geologist Bjornerud, who details how sandstone cleanses underground water, how basalt modulates the climate, and more.

Science longlist

Abrams Press

Slippery Beast: A True Crime Natural History, with Eels by Ellen Ruppel Shell (Aug. 6, $28, ISBN 978-1-4197-6585-8) investigates the illegal eel trade (the fish are difficult to breed yet sought after for food) while expounding on humanity’s relationship with eels, which has preoccupied thinkers from Aristotle to Freud.

AK Press

Dismantling the Master’s Clock: On Race, Space, and Time by Rasheedah Phillips (Jan. 28, $22 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-84935-561-2) draws similarities between quantum physics and African folk understandings of time to suggest that linear notions of time were central to African colonization and enslavement.


Bite: An Incisive History of Teeth, from Hagfish to Humans by Bill Schutt (Aug. 13, $31, ISBN 978-1-64375-178-8) argues that teeth have been key to the evolutionary success of vertebrates and examines how, for instance, Neanderthals softened fibers by chewing them and how baboons project strength by baring their incisors.


Treekeepers: The Race for a Forested Future by Lauren E. Oakes (Nov. 12, $30, ISBN 978-1-5416-0334-9) profiles scientists in Scotland, Panama, and elsewhere who are working to mitigate the climate crisis by protecting or replenishing forests.


Inheritance: The Evolutionary Origins of the Modern World by Harvey Whitehouse (Aug. 20, $35, ISBN 978-0-674-29162-1) contends that humanity’s genetic inclination toward conformity, religion, and tribalism has driven such historic achievements as the development of agriculture, even as such tendencies today contribute to war and global warming.

Bloomsbury SIGMA

The Long History of the Future: Why Tomorrow’s Technology Still Isn’t Here by Nicole Kobie (Sept. 24, $28, ISBN 978-1-3994-0310-8) investigates why predictions of flying cars and hoverboards have yet to be realized and explores what more realistic near-future technology might look like.

Cambridge Univ.

Out of Her Mind: How We Are Failing Women’s Mental Health and What Must Change by Linda Gask (Oct. 10, $25.95, ISBN 978-1-009-38246-5). Psychiatrist Gask recounts stories from her professional practice to illustrate the obstacles women face in accessing adequate mental healthcare and medical providers who take their needs seriously.


Third Ear: Reflections on the Art and Science of Listening by Elizabeth Rosner (Sept. 17, $27, ISBN 978-1-64009-551-9). The novelist draws on psychotherapy, neurolinguistics, and memories of growing up in a multilingual household to argue that listening fosters empathy.


Vanishing Treasures: A Bestiary of Extraordinary Endangered Creatures by Katherine Rundell (Nov. 12, $26, ISBN 978-0-385-55082-6) surveys the biological and behavioral quirks of animals at risk of extinction, including frogs capable of restarting their hearts and seahorse couples that engage in “dance” routines. 100,000-copy announced first printing.


Gray Matters: A Biography of Brain Surgery by Theodore H. Schwartz (Aug. 13, $32, ISBN 978-0-593-47410-5). Neurosurgeon Schwartz chronicles the history of brain surgery, reflects on what’s it like to perform such procedures, and details the discipline’s role in John F. Kennedy conspiracy theories and the NFL’s handling of brain damage among its players.

Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Living on Earth: Forests, Corals, Consciousness, and the Making of the World by Peter Godfrey-Smith (Sept. 3, $29, ISBN 978-0-374-18993-8) examines how animals, bacteria, and plants have shaped their environments since the emergence of the first life-forms over three billion years ago.


Have a Good Trip: Exploring the Magic Mushroom Experience by Eugenia Bone (Oct. 22, $28.99, ISBN 978-1-250-88565-4). Scientific research conducted by ordinary people is opening new frontiers of inquiry on the benefits and medical applications of
psilocybin, according to this report.

Grand Central

Hope for Cynics: The Surprising Science of Human Goodness by Jamil Zaki (Sept. 3, $30, ISBN 978-1-5387-4306-5). Stanford psychologist Zaki draws on social science research to posit that widespread cynicism has obscured the fact that most people are fundamentally kind. 75,000-copy announced first printing.


A Woman Among Wolves: My Journey Through Forty Years of Wolf Recovery by Diane K. Boyd (Sept. 10, $27.95, ISBN 978-1-77840-113-8) recounts how the author, a wildlife biologist, aided efforts to increase the wolf population of Montana by studying and tagging the wild canines.


Lucid Dying: The New Science Revolutionizing How We Understand Life and Death by Sam Parnia (Aug. 6, $32, ISBN 978-0-306-83128-7). Some form of consciousness appears to continue after death, according to this survey of recent research on near-death experiences.

Hanover Square

The Lost World of the Dinosaurs: Uncovering the Secrets of the Prehistoric Age by Armin Schmitt (Nov. 5, $30, ISBN 978-1-335-08121-6) tracks the rise and fall of the ancient reptiles, explaining along the way how birds survived dinosaurs’ extinction and how paleontologists excavate fossils.


Hour of the Heart: Connecting in the Here and Now by Irvin D. and Benjamin Yalom (Nov. 12, $28.99, ISBN 978-0-06-332145-8). Ninety-three-year-old psychotherapist Irvin Yalom, with the help of his son Benjamin, reflects on how his memory loss has changed his practice and compelled him to discover what can be achieved in a single session.

Little, Brown

The Road to Wisdom: On Truth, Science, Faith, and Trust by Francis S. Collins (Sept. 17, $30, ISBN 978-0-316-57630-7) draws on the author’s time as the director of the National Institutes of Health to examine how the reliability and limitations of science inform the discipline’s relationship with truth and public trust. 50,000-copy announced first printing.

Melville House

The Future of Energy by Richard Black (Aug. 6, $17.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68589-135-0) surveys emerging technologies that will enable humans to stop burning fossil fuels.


Vox Ex Machina: A Cultural History of Talking Machines by Sarah A. Bell (Sept. 24, $40 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-262-54635-5) chronicles the evolution of technologies that “speak,” from early analog experiments to the Speak & Spell toy and today’s digital assistants.

New Press

From the Ground Up: The Women Revolutionizing Regenerative Agriculture by Stephanie Anderson (Nov. 19, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-62097-814-6) reports on the harmful practices of industrial agriculture and the women farmers and scientists who are forging more sustainable ways to grow food.


I Heard There Was a Secret Chord: Music as Medicine by Daniel J. Levitin (Aug. 27, $32.50, ISBN 978-1-324-03618-0). Playing
and listening to music has shown promise in alleviating the symptoms of Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, and depression, according to this study from neuroscientist Levitin.

The Mind’s Mirror: Risk and Reward in the Age of AI by Daniela Rus and Gregory Mone (Aug. 6, $29.99, ISBN 978-1-324-07932-3) examines the possibilities enabled by artificial intelligence, as well as the technology’s dangers and how to curb them.

OR Books

Return to Fukushima by Thomas A. Bass (Sept. 10, $19.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68219-510-9) explores the strategies that ordinary people are developing to safely return to the region surrounding the Fukushima power plant after it melted down in 2011.


The Miraculous from the Material: Understanding the Wonders of Nature by Alan Lightman (Nov. 19, $37, ISBN 978-0-593-70148-5). Science and spirituality aren’t mutually exclusive, argues physicist Lightman in this examination of the science behind Saturn’s rings, rainbows, hummingbirds, and other awe-inspiring phenomena.


Good Nature: Why Seeing, Smelling, Hearing, and Touching Plants Is Good for Our Health by Kathy Willis (Dec. 3, $29.95, ISBN 978-1-63936-764-1)
surveys scientific research on the benefits of spending time around flora, noting
that touching soil bolsters one’s immune system and that keeping flowers on one’s desk improves one’s mood.

Penguin Press

Why Animals Talk: The New Science of Animal Communication by Arik Kershenbaum (Aug. 6, $30, ISBN 978-0-593-65493-4) studies how dolphins, lions, parrots, wolves, and other creatures converse with each other and investigates how such chatter compares with human language.

Princeton Univ.

How the New World Became Old: The Deep Time Revolution in America by Caroline Winterer (Oct. 1, $35, ISBN 978-0-691-19967-2) recounts how the 19th-century discovery of dinosaur fossils in North America changed how scientists and ordinary people understood the continent’s history and their place within it.


The Atomic Human: What Makes Us Unique in the Age of AI by Neil D. Lawrence (Sept. 3, $32.50, ISBN 978-1-5417-0512-8). Computer scientist Lawrence meditates on what distinguishes human intelligence from AI and how people can most effectively harness the technology.

Einstein’s Tutor: The Story of Emmy Noether and the Invention of Modern Physics by Lee Phillips (Sept. 10, $30, ISBN 978-1-5417-0295-0) chronicles how 19th-century German mathematician Noether persevered against a sexist scientific establishment to produce a body of work that laid the foundation for the standard model of physics.


Love Triangle: How Trigonometry Shapes the World by Matt Parker (Aug. 20, $30, ISBN 978-0-593-41810-9). The triangle plays a central role in modern life by enabling GPS, recorded music, and rocket launches, according to the Humble Pi author. 75,000-copy announced first printing.


The Secret Life of the Universe: An Astrobiologist’s Search for the Origins and Frontiers of Life by Nathalie A. Cabrol (Aug. 13, $30, ISBN 978-1-6680-4668-5) explains how life emerged on Earth and where it’s most likely to be found elsewhere in the cosmos, from the moons of Jupiter to beyond our solar system.


The Vagina Business: The Innovative Breakthroughs That Could Change Everything in Women’s Health by Marina Gerner (Sept. 17, $27.99, ISBN 978-1-7282-6330-4) surveys how medical device companies are attempting to revolutionize women’s healthcare with bras that can predict heart attacks and fertility systems that track ovulation using saliva samples, among other inventions.

Stanford Univ.

Rachel Carson and the Power of Queer Love by Lida Maxwell (Jan. 28, $25, ISBN 978-1-5036-4053-5). The Silent Spring author’s relationship with neighbor Dorothy Freeman helped shape Carson’s perspective on capitalism’s harmful effects on the environment, according to this history.

St. Martin’s

The Living Medicine: How a Lifesaving Cure Was Nearly Lost—and Why It Will Rescue Us When Antibiotics Fail by Lina Zeldovich (Oct. 22, $30, ISBN 978-1-250-28338-2). Bacteriophages, or viruses that eat bacteria, were a once common treatment for infections and could replace increasingly unreliable antibiotics, suggests journalist Zeldovich.


Trash Talk: An Eye-Opening Exploration of Our Planet’s Dirtiest Problem by Iris Gottlieb (Aug. 20, $18 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-593-71277-1) offers an illustrated look at how society disposes of its garbage, touching on space debris, the ineffectiveness of
recycling, and the mafia’s former stranglehold on New York City sanitation.


Sex, God, and the Brain: How Sexual Pleasure Gave Birth to Religion and a Whole Lot More by Andrew Newberg (Aug. 6, $16.99 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-68442-862-5). The neuroscientist examines the implications of brain scan studies that indicate spiritual and sexual experiences activate the same neural networks.

Univ. of Chicago

Is Anyone Listening? What Animals Are Saying to Each Other and to Us by Denise L. Herzing (Nov. 14, $28, ISBN 978-0-226-35749-2) draws on the author’s research into dolphin-human communication to explore how chimpanzees, African elephants, mountain gorillas, and other animals “speak” with humans and each other.

A Little Queer Natural History by Josh L. Davis (Oct. 10, $16 trade paper, ISBN 978-0-226-83703-1) tours the diverse ways in which sex and sexual reproduction manifest in the animal and plant kingdoms, including split gill mushrooms with 23,000 mating types and queen bees who choose the sex of their offspring.


Autism Is Not a Disease: The Politics of Neurodiversity by Jodie Hare (Sept. 10, $19.95 trade paper, ISBN 978-1-80429-153-5) argues that neurodivergence should be viewed as an array of potential outcomes of normal genetic variation, rather than deviation from an imaginary archetypal human form.


Probably the Best Book on Statistics Ever Written: How to Beat the Odds and Make Better Decisions by Haim Shapira (Aug. 13, $27.95, ISBN 978-1-78678-774-3) examines probability’s role in advertising, gambling, government legislation, the stock market, and weather forecasting, among other everyday phenomena.

This article has been updated.

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