Books Issue 2011

Lit shorts: Cocker, on paper

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Mother, Brother, Lover
By Jarvis Cocker
Faber and Faber
208 pp., hardcover, $17

 
Books of lyrics — words uprooted from the music and set down naked on the page — are traditionally published with either self-congratulation or doubts by songwriters. Jarvis Cocker has some doubts.

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Lit shorts: 'Beck' by the book

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Beck
By Autumn de Wilde
Chronicle Books
176 pp., hardcover, $35

 
For more than a decade and half, pop culture photographer (and video director) Autumn de Wilde has chronicled Beck, the iconic songwriter and her personal friend, on tour, in the studio, and as he’s posed before the camera — the latter especially.

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Cut + Paste

BOOKS ISSUE: Zine culture survives and thrives, beyond the Web

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emilysavage@sfbg.com

LIT For the winter holidays many years back, I received a long-arm stapler. It wasn't a surprise, I'd expressly asked for it. And no, I was not a teenage office supply fetishist.

I wanted the stapler because I wrote, cut-and-pasted, and hand-assembled my own zine, and that process was about to get a lot more efficient, thanks to my new long-arm. Those who've crafted their own DIY booklets know the thrill of the further-stretching stapler that meets the paper crease.Read more »

Cult wonder

BOOKS ISSUE: Gender-hopping protagonist Vanessa Michael Munroe is back in thriller The Innocent

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tredmond@sfbg.com

LIT If you're shopping for that special thriller fan on your list, you might want to pop an I.O.U. into his or her stocking: the best thriller of the year doesn't hit bookstores until Dec. 27.Read more »

Shelf life

BOOKS ISSUE: Ourshelves turns over a new leaf for broke bookworms

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caitlin@sfbg.com

LIT On a Wednesday night in a Mission basement, a group of new friends has gathered to celebrate a library. Onstage, a man and a woman struggle to maintain their solemnity while reading a passage from David Foster Wallace's Infinite Jest on the fallacy of video phone calls. In the dimness, the rest of the members of Ourshelves sit in chairs and on benches, everyone doubtless reflecting on the power of the written word.Read more »

Cruel revolution

BOOKS ISSUE: A Thousand Lives' harrowing, heartfelt Jonestown journey

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cheryl@sfbg.com

LIT "As one survivor told me," author Julia Scheeres writes in her introduction to A Thousand Lives: The Untold Story of Hope, Deception, and Survival at Jonestown (Free Press, 320 pp., $26), "nobody joins a cult."Read more »

Occupy hip-hop

BOOKS ISSUE: Three new lit releases by hip-hop greats put forth visions of change

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Get read!

BOOKS ISSUE: 25 books from 2011 to check out

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ROCK AND ROLL ALWAYS FORGETS

By Chuck Eddy

Duke University Press

352 pp., paper, $24.95Read more »

You grow, girl?

BOOKS ISSUE: From Blair Witch to blazing weed -- Heather Donahue's book takes on the weed community

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caitlin@sfbg.com

HERBWISE The average celebrity autobiography follows an arc of learning and growing. The earnestly-made mistake — whether in the form of childhood shenanigan or adult infidelity — and then the ensuing redemption. But rarely do book-sized treatises emerge from the decision to leave the celebrity fold for the greener fields of bud agriculture. Leave it to the girl from the Blair Witch Project to produce that one.Read more »