In 1942, the Gestapo would stop at nothing to track down a mysterious 'limping lady' who was fighting for the freedom of France. The Nazi chiefs issued a simple but urgent command: 'She is the most dangerous of all Allied spies. We must find and destroy her.'
The Gestapo's target was Virginia Hall, a glamorous American with a wooden leg who broke through the barriers against her gender and disability to be the first woman to infiltrate Vichy France for the SOE. In so doing she helped turn the course of the intelligence war.
This is the epic tale of an heiress who determined that a hunting accident would not define her existence; a young woman who gambled her life to fight for the freedoms she believed in; an espionage novice who helped to light the flame of French Resistance.
Based on new and extensive research, Sonia Purnell has for the first time uncovered the full secret life of Virginia Hall, an astounding and inspiring story of heroism, spycraft, resistance and personal triumph over shocking adversity.
Søren Kierkegaard is one of the most passionate and challenging of all modern philosophers, and is often regarded as the founder of existentialism. Over about a decade in the 1840s and 1850s, writings poured from his pen pursuing the question of existence - how to be a human being in the world? - while exploring the possibilities of Christianity and confronting the failures of its institutional manifestation around him.
Much of his creativity sprang from his relationship with the young woman whom he promised to marry, then left to devote himself to writing, a relationship which remained decisive for the rest of his life. He deliberately lived in the swim of human life in Copenhagen, but alone, and died exhausted in 1855 at the age of 42, bequeathing his remarkable writings to his erstwhile fiancee.
Clare Carlisle's innovative and moving biography writes Kierkegaard's life as far as possible from his own perspective, to convey what it was like actually being this Socrates of Christendom - as he put it, living life forwards yet only understanding it backwards.
Bret Easton Ellis has wrestled with the double-edged sword of fame and notoriety for more than thirty years now, since Less Than Zero catapulted him into the limelight in 1985, earning him devoted fans and, perhaps, even fiercer enemies.
An enigmatic figure who has always gone against the grain and refused categorization, he captured the depravity of the eighties with one of contemporary literature's most polarizing characters, American Psycho's iconic, terrifying Patrick Bateman, and received plentiful death threats in the bargain.
In recent years, his candor and gallows humor on both Twitter and his podcast have continued his legacy as someone determined to speak the truth, however painful it might be, and whom people accordingly either love or love to hate. He encounters various positions and voices controversial opinions, more often than not fighting the status quo.
Now, in White, with the same originality displayed in his fiction, Ellis pours himself out onto the page and, in doing so, eviscerates the perceived good that the social-media age has wrought, starting with the dangerous cult of likeability. White is both a denunciation of censorship, particularly the self-inflicted sort committed in hopes of being 'accepted', and a bracing view of a life devoted to authenticity.
A powerful, moving account of life in Damascus, and a story of how the power of music can unite people in the face conflict.
One morning on the outskirts of Damascus, two starving friends are walking through their desolate city and come across a familiar street that has been turned to rubble, concrete bridges towering above them like tombs and houses turned inside out. Aeham turns to the only comfort he has left and sits at his piano to play a song of hope to his fellow Syrians. It is a song that will reach far beyond the streets of his home and carry consequences he could never have dreamed of.
This tender and poetic account of Aeham's experiences, from losing his city, friends and family to leaving his country and finding safety, will move readers with raw and candid emotion. This is a gripping portrait of a man's search for solace and of a country that has been fiercely torn apart.
In So Much Longing in So Little Space, Karl Ove Knausgaard explores the life and work of Edvard Munch. Setting out to understand the enduring power of Munch's painting, Knausgaard reflects on the essence of creativity, on choosing to be an artist, experiencing the world through art and its influence on his own writing.
As co-curator of a major new exhibition of Munch's work in Oslo, Knausgaard visits the landscapes that inspired him, and speaks with contemporary artists, including Vanessa Baird and Anselm Kiefer.
Bringing together art history, biography and memoir, and drawing on ideas of truth, originality and memory, So Much Longing in So Little Space is a brilliant and personal examination of the legacy of one of the world's most iconic painters, and a meditation on art itself.
Robert A. Caro, 'one of the great reporters of our time and probably the greatest biographer' (Sunday Times), is one of the most acclaimed writers of his generation, whose biographies are widely considered to be masterpieces.
In Working he offers a captivating account of his life as a writer, describing the sometimes staggering lengths to which he has gone in order to produce his books and offering priceless insights into the art and craft of non-fiction writing.
Anyone interested in investigative journalism and the pursuit of truth, in the writer's process and the creation of literature, in the art of interviewing or simply the psychology of excellence will find a masterclass in all these subjects within these pages. Readers already familiar with Caro's work, meanwhile, will be thrilled at the revelations on offer, including how he discovered the fiercely guarded secrets of his subjects, how he constructed the pivotal scenes in his books and the fullest description yet of his forthcoming final volume of The Years of Lyndon Johnson.
Including several of Caro's most famous speeches and interviews alongside the new material, Working is the self-portrait of a man who knows the meaning and importance of great story-telling. It is, like all his books, an utterly riveting example of that too.
An unflinchingly raw and lyrical exploration of loss, poetry and love.
'"I raise my glass to my eldest son. His pregnant wife and daughter are sleeping above us. Outside, the March evening is cold and clear. "To life!" I say as the glasses clink with a delicate and pleasing sound. My mother says something to the dog. Then the phone rings. We don't answer it. Who could be calling so late on a Saturday evening?'
In March 2015, Naja Marie Aidt's 25-year-old son, Carl, died in a tragic accident.
When Death Takes Something From You Give It Back is about losing a child. It is about formulating a vocabulary to express the deepest kind of pain. And it's about finding a way to write about a reality invaded by grief, lessened by loss.
Faced with the sudden emptiness of language, Naja finds solace in the anguish of Joan Didion, Nick Cave, C.S. Lewis, Mallarme, Plato and other writers who have suffered the deadening impact of loss. Their torment suffuses with her own as Naja wrestles with words and contests their capacity to speak for the depths of her sorrow.
This palimpsest of mourning enables Naja to turn over the pathetic, precious transience of existence and articulates her greatest fear: to forget. The insistent compulsion to reconstruct the harrowing aftermath of Carl's death keeps him painfully present, while fragmented memories, journal entries and poetry inch her closer to piecing Carl's life together.
Intensely moving and quietly devastating, this is what is it to be a family, what it is to love and lose, and what it is to treasure life in spite of death's indomitable resolve.
The irresistible story of Japanese cherry blossoms, threatened by political ideology and saved by an unknown Englishman Collingwood Ingram, known as 'Cherry' for his defining obsession, was born in 1880 and lived until he was a hundred, witnessing a fraught century of conflict and change.
After visiting Japan in 1902 and 1907 and discovering two magnificent cherry trees in the garden of his family home in Kent in 1919, Ingram fell in love with cherry blossoms, or sakura, and dedicated much of his life to their cultivation and preservation.
On a 1926 trip to Japan to search for new specimens, Ingram was shocked to see the loss of local cherry diversity, driven by modernisation, neglect and a dangerous and creeping ideology. A cloned cherry, the Somei-yoshino, was taking over the landscape and becoming the symbol of Japan's expansionist ambitions.
The most striking absence from the Japanese cherry scene, for Ingram, was that of Taihaku, a brilliant 'great white' cherry tree. A proud example of this tree grew in his English garden and he swore to return it to its native home. Multiple attempts to send Taihaku scions back to Japan ended in failure, but Ingram persisted.
Over decades, Ingram became one of the world's leading cherry experts and shared the joy of sakura both nationally and internationally. Every spring we enjoy his legacy. 'Cherry' Ingram is a portrait of this little-known Englishman, a story of Britain and Japan in the twentieth century and an exploration of the delicate blossoms whose beauty is admired around the world.
Karl Marx has fascinated and inspired generations of radicals in the past 200 years. In this new, definitive biography, Sven-Eric Liebman makes his work live once more for a new generation. Despite 200 years having passed since his birth, his burning condemnation of capitalism remains of immediate interest.
Now, more than ever before, Marx's texts can be read for what they truly are. In addition to providing a living picture of Marx the man, his life, and his family and friends - as well as his lifelong collaboration with Friedrich Engels - Sweden's leading intellectual historian Sven-Eric Liedman, in this major new biography, shows what Karl Marx the thinker and researcher really wrote, demonstrating that this giant of the nineteenth century can still exert a powerful attraction for the inhabitants of the twenty-first.
'An unforgettable love story set in perilous circumstances. It is a reminder that even in the most horrific times love will find a way and ultimately conquer. I can't recommend it enough.' Heather Morris, author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz In the heart of Nazi-occupied Europe, two people meet fleetingly in a chance encounter. One is an underground resistance fighter; the other a prisoner of war. A crumpled note passes between these two strangers and sets them on a course that will change their lives forever.
The Note Through The Wire is the true story of Josefine Lobnik, a Yugoslav partisan heroine, and Bruce Murray, a New Zealand soldier, who, due to a succession of near-impossible coincidences, discover love in the midst of a brutal war.
Woven through their tales of great bravery, daring escapes, betrayal, torture and retaliation is their remarkable love story that survived against all odds. This is an extraordinary account of two ordinary people living through the unimaginable hardship of Hitler's barbaric regime.
Set in Alexandria, this classic and much-loved memoir chronicles the exploits of Andre Aciman's colourful Sephardic Jewish family from its arrival in Egypt at the turn of the century to its forced departure three generations later. Aciman tells a story of childhood innocence, of intricate family life and the pain of exile from a place one loves.
Elegant, beautifully-written, moving and witty, Out of Egypt bridges cultures and generations and provides a moving portrait of a by-gone world.
'[A] mesmerizing portrait of a now vanished world. Aciman's story of Alexandria is the story of his own family, a Jewish family with Italian and Turkish roots that tied its future to Egypt and made its home there for three generations, only to find itself peremptorily expelled by the Government in the early 1960's. It is the story of a fractious clan of dreamers and con men and the emotional price they would pay for exile, the story of a young boy's coming of age and his memories of the city he loved in his youth.
Writing in lucid, lyrical prose, Mr Aciman does an exquisite job of conjuring up the daily rhythms and rituals of his family's life: their weekly trips to the movies, their daily jaunts to the beach, their internecine squabbles over everything from religion to money to the pronunciation of words. There are some wonderfully vivid scenes here, as strange and marvelous as something in Garcia Marquez, as comical and surprising as something in Chekhov.' - Michiko Kakutani, New York Times
Victoria Woodhull, Mary Wollstonecraft, Aimee Semple McPherson, Edwina Mountbatten, Margaret Argyll and Chanel were all women who dared. They had no time for what society said they could and couldn't do and would see the world bend before they did.
In 1872 a mesmerising psychic named Victoria Woodhull shattered tradition by running for the White House. Had she won the ensuing spectacle would surely have rivalled that of our own era. Abhorring such flamboyance, Mary Wollstonecraft inspired a revolution of thought with her pen as she issued women's first manifesto - still to be fulfilled.
From Aimee Semple McPherson, the first female preacher in America, to Coco Chanel, designer of an empire, these women became the change they wanted to see in society.
In Women Who Dared, Jeremy Scott pays tribute to them all with wit, verve and reverence.
For centuries women have had to tackle the myths surrounding motherhood. From the Madonna figure sacrificing everything for the child to the dutiful housewife juggling chores, mothers have always been expected to put themselves last. But it's time to bust open the myths and shine a light on the badass women who are defying gender stereotypes and creating their own version of motherhood.
Featuring vibrant illustrations by award-winning artist Sarah Firth, this is a celebration of the sassy, inspiring mothers who dared to be different. From the first woman in space Valentina Tereshkova to the Prime Minister of New Zealand Jacinda Ardern, this book reveals the stories of trailblazing women redefining what it means to be a mother.
The Resurrection of Winnie Mandela charts the rise and fall-and rise, again-of one of South Africa's most controversial political figures. 'Ma Winnie' fought apartheid with uncommon ferocity, but her implication in kidnapping, torture and killings-including the murder of 14-year-old Stompie Seipei-would later see her shunned. Sisonke Msimang argues that this complicated woman was not witch but warrior- that her violence, like that of the men she fought alongside, was a function of her political views rather than a descent into madness. In resurrecting Ma Winnie, Msimang asks what it means to reclaim this powerful woman as an icon while honouring apartheid's victims-those who were collateral damage and whose stories have yet to be told.
Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sympathizer Viet Thanh Nguyen called on 17 fellow refugee writers from across the globe to shed light on their experiences, and the result is The Displaced, a powerful dispatch from the individual lives behind current headlines, with proceeds to support the International Rescue Committee (IRC).
Today the world faces an enormous refugee crisis: 68.5 million people fleeing persecution and conflict from Myanmar to South Sudan and Syria, a figure worse than flight of Jewish and other Europeans during World War II and beyond anything the world has seen in this generation. Yet in the United States, United Kingdom, and other countries with the means to welcome refugees, anti-immigration politics and fear seem poised to shut the door. Even for readers seeking to help, the sheer scale of the problem renders the experience of refugees hard to comprehend.
Viet Nguyen, called one of our great chroniclers of displacement (Joyce Carol Oates, The New Yorker), brings together writers originally from Mexico, Bosnia, Iran, Afghanistan, Soviet Ukraine, Hungary, Chile, Ethiopia, and others to make their stories heard. They are formidable in their own right-MacArthur Genius grant recipients, National Book Award and National Book Critics Circle Award finalists, filmmakers, speakers, lawyers, professors, and New Yorker contributors-and they are all refugees, many as children arriving in London and Toronto, Oklahoma and Minnesota, South Africa and Germany. Their 17 contributions are as diverse as their own lives have been, and yet hold just as many themes in common.
Reyna Grande questions the line between official refugee and illegal immigrant, chronicling the disintegration of the family forced to leave her behind; Fatima Bhutto visits Alejandro Inarritu's virtual reality border crossing installation Flesh and Sand ; Aleksandar Hemon recounts a gay Bosnian's answer to his question, How did you get here? ; Thi Bui offers two uniquely striking graphic panels; David Bezmozgis writes about uncovering new details about his past and attending a hearing for a new refugee; and Hmong writer Kao Kalia Yang recalls the courage of children in a camp in Thailand.
These essays reveal moments of uncertainty, resilience in the face of trauma, and a reimagining of identity, forming a compelling look at what it means to be forced to leave home and find a place of refuge. The Displaced is also a commitment: ABRAMS will donate 10 percent of the cover price of this book, a minimum of $25,000 annually, to the International Rescue Committee, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to providing humanitarian aid, relief, and resettlement to refugees and other victims of oppression or violent conflict.
List of Contributors: Joseph Azam David Bezmozgis Fatima Bhutto Thi Bui Ariel Dorfman Lev Golinkin Reyna Grande Meron Hadero Aleksandar Hemon Joseph Kertes Porochista Khakpour Marina Lewycka Maaza Mengiste Dina Nayeri Vu Tran Novuyo Rosa Tshuma Kao Kalia Yang
In 2011, Tim Cook took on an impossible task - following in the footsteps of one of history's greatest business visionaries, Steve Jobs. Facing worldwide scrutiny, Cook (who was often described as shy, unassuming and unimaginative) defied all expectations. Under Cook's leadership Apple has soared- its stock has nearly tripled to become the world's first trillion-dollar company. From the massive growth of the iPhone to new victories like the Apple Watch, Cook is leading Apple to a new era of success.
But he's also spearheaded a cultural revolution within the company. Since becoming CEO, Cook has introduced a new style of management that emphasizes kindness, collaboration and honesty, and has quietly pushed Apple to support sexual and racial equal rights and invest heavily in renewable energy.
Drawing on authorized access with several Apple insiders, Kahney,the world's leading reporter on Apple, tells the inspiring story of how one man attempted to replace the irreplaceable and succeeded better than anyone thought possible.
Foreword by Janet Yellen Weijian Shan's Out of the Gobi is a powerful memoir and commentary that will be one of the most important books on China of our time, one with the potential to re-shape how Americans view China, and how the Chinese view life in America.
Shan, a former hard laborer who is now one of Asia's best-known financiers, is thoughtful, observant, eloquent, and brutally honest, making him well-positioned to tell the story of a life that is a microcosm of modern China, and of how, improbably, that life became intertwined with America. Out of the Gobi draws a vivid picture of the raw human energy and the will to succeed against all odds.
Shan only finished elementary school when Mao Zedong's Cultural Revolution tore his country apart. He was a witness to the brutality and absurdity of Mao's policies during one of the most tumultuous eras in China's history. Exiled to the Gobi Desert at age 15 and denied schooling for 10 years, he endured untold hardships without ever giving up his dream for an education. Shan's improbable journey, from the Gobi to the People's Republic of Berkeley and far beyond, is a uniquely American success story - told with a splash of humor, deep insight and rich and engaging detail.
This powerful and personal perspective on China and America will inform Americans' view of China, humanizing the country, while providing a rare view of America from the prism of a keen foreign observer who lived the American dream.
Says former Federal Reserve chair Janet Yellen: Shan's life provides a demonstration of what is possible when China and the United States come together, even by happenstance. It is not only Shan's personal history that makes this book so interesting but also how the stories of China and America merge in just one moment in time to create an inspired individual so unique and driven, and so representative of the true sprits of both countries.
The destiny I put down in my novel has become mine. I am now under arrest like the hero I created years ago. I await the decision that will determine my future, just as he awaited his. I am unaware of my destiny, which has perhaps already been decided, just as he was unaware of his. I suffer the pathetic torment of profound helplessness, just as he did.
Like a cursed oracle, I foresaw my future years ago not knowing that it was my own.
Confined in a cell four metres long, imprisoned on absurd, Kafkaesque charges, novelist Ahmet Altan is one of many writers persecuted by Recep Tayyip Erdogan's oppressive regime. In this extraordinary memoir, written from his prison cell, Altan reflects upon his sentence, on a life whittled down to a courtyard covered by bars, and on the hope and solace a writer's mind can provide, even in the darkest places.
Available for the first time in an English translation, this selection gives non-Francophone readers the chance to encounter the many incarnations of renowned Belgian painter Rene Magritte - the artist, the man, the aspiring noirist, the fire-breathing theorist - in his own words. Through whimsical personal letters, biting apologia, appreciations of fellow artists, pugnacious interviews, farcical film scripts, prose poems, manifestos and much more, a new Magritte emerges: part Surrealist, part literalist, part celebrity, part rascal.
While this book is bound to appeal to admirers of Magritte's art and those who are curious about his personal life, there is also much to delight all readers interested in the history and theory of art, philosophy and politics, as well as lovers of creativity and the inner workings of a probing, inquisitive mind unrestricted by genre, medium or fashion.
Kate Nicholls left England to raise her five children in Botswana: an experience that would change each of their lives. Living on a shoestring in a lion conservation camp, Kate home-schools her family while they also learn at first hand about the individual lives of wild lions. Their deep attachment to these magnificent animals is palpable.
The setting is exotic but it is also precarious. When the author is subjected to a brutal attack by three men, it threatens to destroy her and her family: post-traumatic stress turns a good mother into a woman who is fragmented and out of control.
In this powerfully written, raw and often warmly funny memoir, we witness the devastation of living with a mother whose resilience is almost broken, and how familial structures shift as the children mature and roles change. UNDER THE CAMEL TREE addresses head-on the many issues surrounding motherhood, education, independence, and the natural world; and highlights the long-lasting effect of gender violence on secondary victims. Above all, it is an inspiring account of family love, and a powerful beacon of hope for life after trauma.
The story of the last years of the author of Treasure Island and Jekyll and Hyde, lived out in the earthly paradise of the Samoan Islands.
Shortlised for the Saltire Society Non Fiction Book of the Year Award
Almost every adult and child is familiar with his Treasure Island, but few know that Robert Louis Stevenson lived out his last years on an equally remote island, which was squabbled over by colonial powers much as Captain Flint's treasure was contested by the mongrel crew of the Hispaniola.
In 1890 Stevenson settled in Upolu, an island in Samoa, after two years sailing round the South Pacific. He was given a Samoan name and became a fierce critic of the interference of Germany, Britain and the U.S.A. in Samoan affairs - a stance that earned him Oscar Wilde's sneers, and brought him into conflict with the Colonial Office, who regarded him as a menace and even threatened him with expulsion from the island.
Joseph Farrell's pioneering study of Stevenson's twilight years stands apart from previous biographies by giving as much weight to the Samoa and the Samoans - their culture, their manners, their history - as to the life and work of the man himself. For it is only by examining the full complexity of Samoa and the political situation it faced as the nineteenth century gave way to the twentieth, that Stevenson's lasting and generous contribution to its cause can be appreciated.
When Ian Buruma arrived in Tokyo as a young film student in 1975, he found a feverish and surreal metropolis in the midst of an economic boom, where everything seemed new and history only remained in fragments.
Through his adventures in the world of avant-garde theatre, his encounters with carnival acts, fashion photographers and moments on-set with Akira Kurosawa, Buruma came of age. For an outsider, unattached to the cultural burdens placed on the Japanese, this was a place to be truly free.
A Tokyo Romance is a portrait of a young artist and the fantastical city that shaped him, and a timeless story about the desire to transgress boundaries: cultural, artistic and sexual.
In this memoir-in-essays full of spot-on observations about home, work, and creative life, Philpott takes on the conflicting pressures of modern womanhood with wit and heart. She offers up her own stories to show that identity crises don't happen just once or only at midlife; reassures us that small, recurring personal re-inventions are both normal and necessary; and advises that if you're going to faint, you should get low to the ground first. Most of all, Philpott shows that when you stop feeling satisfied with your life, you don't have to burn it all down and set off on a transcontinental hike (unless you want to, of course). You can call upon your many selves to figure out who you are, who you're not, and where you belong. Who among us isn't trying to do that?
From one of America’s most inspiring political leaders, a book about the core truths that unite us, and the shared values that will see us into the future.
Known for bringing a voice to the voiceless, Senator Kamala Harris is committed to speaking the truth. The daughter of immigrants, she was raised in a community that cared deeply about social justice and, growing up, Harris herself never hid her passion for doing what is right.
Throughout her career, from starting out as a prosecutor right up to her position as California’s Attorney General, and now as a US Senator, her hallmarks have been applying a holistic, data-driven approach to the thorniest issues, whether it’s taking on the big banks or rejecting stale ‘tough on crime’ rhetoric as presenting a series of false choices. Neither ‘tough’ nor ‘soft’ but smart on crime became her mantra. Being smart means learning the truths that can make us better as a community, and supporting those truths with all our might.
Through the arc of her own life, Harris communicates a vision of shared struggle, shared purpose, and shared values and grapples with complex issues that affect America and the world at large, from health care and the new economy to immigration, national security, the opioid crisis, and accelerating inequality. By reckoning with the big challenges we face together, drawing on the hard-won wisdom and insight from her own career and the work of those who have most inspired her, Kamala Harris offers in The Truths We Hold a master class in problem solving, in crisis management, and leadership in challenging times.
Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980) was one of the most influential thinkers of the twentieth century. Regarded as the father of existentialist philosophy, he was also a political critic, moralist, playwright, novelist, and author of biographies and short stories. Thomas R. Flynn provides the first book-length account of Sartre as a philosopher of the imaginary, mapping the intellectual development of his ideas throughout his life, and building a narrative that is not only philosophical but also attentive to the political and literary dimensions of his work. Exploring Sartre's existentialism, politics, ethics, and ontology, this book illuminates the defining ideas of Sartre's oeuvre: the literary and the philosophical, the imaginary and the conceptual, his descriptive phenomenology and his phenomenological concept of intentionality, and his conjunction of ethics and politics with an 'egoless' consciousness. It will appeal to all who are interested in Sartre's philosophy and its relation to his life.
First English translation of Ahmet Hamdi Tanpinar's Bes Sehir.
Ahmet Hamdi Tanpinar's `Five Cities' was first published in Turkish as Bes Sehir in 1946 and revised in 1960. It consists of five essays, each focused on a city significant in Anatolian history and in Tanpinar's emotional life. Part history, part autobiography, part poetic meditation on time and memory, Five Cities is Proustian in style, with a tension between a backward-looking melancholy and a concern for the unpredictable future of the author's country. Comparable to Nobel Laureate Orhan Pamuk's Istanbul: Memories of a City, Five Cities emphasizes personal attitudes and reactions but has a wider scope of geography, history and culture.
From the two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Power Broker and The Years of Lyndon Johnson: an unprecedented gathering of vivid, candid, deeply revealing recollections about his experiences researching and writing his acclaimed books.
For the first time in book form, Robert Caro gives us a glimpse into his own life and work in these evocatively written, personal pieces. He describes what it was like to interview the mighty Robert Moses; what it felt like to begin discovering the extent of the political power Moses wielded; the combination of discouragement and exhilaration he felt confronting the vast holdings of the Lyndon B. Johnson Library in Austin, Texas; his encounters with witnesses, including longtime residents wrenchingly displaced by the construction of Moses' Cross-Bronx Expressway and Lady Bird Johnson acknowledging the beauty and influence of one of LBJ's mistresses. He gratefully remembers how, after years of working in solitude, he found a writers' community at the New York Public Library, and details the ways he goes about planning and composing his books.
Caro recalls the moments at which he came to understand that he wanted to write not just about the men who wielded power but about the people and the politics that were shaped by that power. And he talks about the importance to him of the writing itself, of how he tries to infuse it with a sense of place and mood to bring characters and situations to life on the page. Taken together, these reminiscences - some previously published, some written expressly for this book - bring into focus the passion, the wry self-deprecation, and the integrity with which this brilliant historian has always approached his work.