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JAMIE'S BOOKSHELF: Kentucky Author Gurney Norman's Volume Now Available in Hardback

Updated: Nov 6, 2021

Updated Nov. 3, 2021

Compiled by Jamie H. Vaught

--"Power Play: Tesla, Elon Musk, and the Bet of the Century" by Tim Higgins (Doubleday, $30) is a fast-paced inside story of Musk, who is among the most controversial titans of Silicon Valley, and Tesla's bid to build the world's greatest automobile. The new hardcover is an exhilarating look at how a team of eccentrics and innovators beat the odds -- and changed the future. The author is an automotive and technology reporter for The Wall Street Journal.

--"Allegiance: Stories" by Gurney Norman (Old Cove Press, $26.95) is a part autobiography and part Appalachian folktale that follows the well-known author's transformation from a working-class childhood in the mountains of eastern Kentucky and southwestern Virginia to his mid-life struggles with alcoholism and depression. This expanded, hardcover edition also includes a collection of nonfiction essays that rounds out the book. A novelist and short story writer whose works include Kinfolks: The Wilgus Stories and Divine Right's Trip, Norman is a professor of English at the University of Kentucky.

--"Honor Bound: An American Story of Dreams and Service" by Amy McGrath with Chris Patterson (Alfred A. Knopf, $28) is an inspiring story of the first female Marine to fly a combat mission in an F/A-18 -- and the transformative events that led to her bold decision to take on the most powerful man in the U.S. Senate, Mitch McConnell, in 2020. McGrath grew up in Edgewood, Ky.

--"Assignment Russia: Becoming a Foreign Correspondent in the Crucible of the Cold War" by Marvin Kalb (Brookings Institution Press, $24.99) is a personal journey through some of the darkest moments of the cold war and the early days of television news. An award-winning journalist who has written extensively about the world he reported on during his long television career, Kalb now turns his eye on the young man who became that journalist during the early days. As you may recall, cold war tensions were high between Eisenhower’s America and Khrushchev’s Soviet Union. The author, now 91, previously wrote "The Year I Was Peter the Great," the first volume in a serious of memoirs narrating his earlier life.

--"Frankly, We Did Win This Election: The Inside Story of How Trump Lost" by Michael C. Bender (Twelve, $30) is a remarkable inside story that is filled with fresh interviews with Trump, key campaign advisors and senior administration officials about the 2020 presidential campaign. The 418-page hardcover -- which includes exclusive collection of internal campaign memos, emails, and text messages for scores of never-before-reported details about the campaign -- provides fascinating details how President Trump became the first incumbent in three decades to lose reelection and the only one whose defeat culminated in a violent insurrection. The author is a senior White House reporter for The Wall Street Journal.

--"NLT Personal-Size Giant-Print Bible, Filament-Enabled Edition" (Tyndale, $29.99) would be a good possibility if you're looking for a new Bible. This 1,920-page volume (New Living Translation) has readable text and an attractive layout in an easy-to-carry size. It also features a groundbreaking Filament Bible app, which turns this Bible into a powerful spiritual experience. The app allows you to use your mobile phone or tablet to connect every page to a massive collection of related content, including study notes, devotionals, interactive maps, informative videos and worship music.

--"Zuzu Bailey's 'It's A Wonderful Life' Cookbook" by Karolyn Grimes "Zuzu" and Franklin Dohanyos (Citadel Press, $22.95) is an updated volume loaded with old-fashioned recipes inspired by life in fictional Bedford Falls. The book is replete with movie lore and recipes meant to delight cooks, tempt their friends and families, and entertain movie buffs and collectors alike, celebrating one of the most beloved, heartwarming American Christmas films of all time.

--"American Marxism" by Mark R. Levin (Threshold Editions, $28) discusses how the core elements of Marxist ideology are now pervasive in American society and culture—from our schools, the press, and corporations, to Hollywood, the Democratic Party, and the Biden presidency—and how it is often cloaked in deceptive labels like “progressivism,” “democratic socialism,” “social activism,” and more. The author, who has written several best-selling books, is a well-known radio host. He is a member of the National Radio Hall of Fame.

--"Beyond Will and Power: A Biography of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte" by Earl G. Parreno (Optima Typographics, $15 ) is an insightful look about the current Philippine president, whose six-year term expires in 2022. The 227-page volume has received good reviews in the Philippines. Even though it is not marketed in the U.S., you still can check the book in several libraries at major universities. However, if you'd like to purchase a copy, you may contact the author in the Philippines at for more details. He can even sign a copy for you. Parreno, who has written for the Manila Times, Newsbreak Magazine and other publications, is a freelance writer, political commentator and social entrepreneur.

--"The Personal Librarian: A Novel" by Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray (Berkley, $27) tells a fascinating story about J.P. Morgan's personal librarian, Belle da Costa Greene, the Black women who was forced to hide her true identity and pass as white in order to become a fixture in New York City society.

--"Kleptopia: How Dirty Money Is Conquering the World" by Tom Burgis (Harper Paperbacks, $17.99) is a shocking story about our shadowy world that have emerged over the years. With the author's award-winning investigative reporting, the volume, now available in paperback, follows the dirty money that is flooding the global economy, emboldening dictators, and poisoning democracies. Th author weaves together four stories that reveal a terrifying global web of corruption: the troublemaker from Basingstoke who stumbles on the secrets of a Swiss bank, the ex-Soviet billionaire constructing a private empire, the righteous Canadian lawyer with a mysterious client, and the Brooklyn crook protected by the CIA.

--"Clubbie: A Minor League Baseball Memoir" by Greg Larson (University of Nebraska Press, $27.95) is a behind-the-scenes tale of two seasons in the mysterious world of Minor League Baseball. An unforgettable true story for baseball fans and nonfans alike, the hardcover is a look at the harsh experience of professional sports. The author spent two years as a clubhouse attendant for Cal Ripken Jr.'s Aberdeen IronBirds, now the high Class A affiliate of the Baltimore Orioles.

--"Radical Son: A Generational Odyssey" by David Horowitz (Bombardier Books, $28) is a compelling and spiritual memoir that tells the story of the author's political odyssey from the 1960s radical to the 1990s conservative. The 524-page hardcover is republished after more than 20 years with a new introduction by Horowitz, a conservative thinker and writer who has written numerous books.

--"Giannis: The Improbable Rise of an NBA MVP" by Mirin Fader (Hachette Books, $30) is a remarkable human story of Giannis Antetokounmpo's extraordinary rise from poverty in Athens, Greece to pro basketball superstar, touching on topics of family, immigration, hard work, wealth, loss, and dreaming big. The author manages to come up with new details about the star's difficult childhood that shaped "The Greek Freak." The author, who was named a Top Woman in Media in 2019 by Folio Magazine, is a staff writer for The Ringer.

--"The Family Business: How Ingram Transformed the World of Books" by Keel Hunt (West Margin Press, $24.99) recounts a remarkable story about how a little-known Nashville-based company grew to play a major role in transforming book publishing around the world. The 229-page hardcover draws on more than 70 interviews with company insiders as well as book industry experts to present the ingram story. The history of the Ingram Content Group is one of the most important and remarkable business stories that almost no one knows. The author, who has written two books on political history in Tennessee, is an editorial columnist for The Tennessean in Nashville.

--"English Lit: Poems" by Bernard Clay (Old Cove Press/Swallow Press, $18.95) is an autobiographical poetry from one of Kentucky's rising Affrilachian literary stars. The new paperback contrasts the roots of Black male identity against an urban and rural Kentucky landscape. The author discusses his west-side Louisville upbringing and the complexities of Black Appalachian identity in this debut collection of poems compiled from more than 20 years of work. The author, who has an MFA in Creative Writing from UK, lives on a farm in eastern Kentucky with his wife.

--"Zero Fail: The Rise and Fall of the Secret Service" by Carol Leonnig (Random House, $30) is an interesting account about the rise and fall of the Secret Service, which was established in 1865. But new volume begins in 1963 with the Kennedy assassination and continues to the alarming mismanagement during the Obama and Trump years, including the January 6 insurrection at the Capital. The bestselling co-author of "A Very Stable Genius" and "I Alone Can Fix It," Leonnig has been reporting on the Secret Service for The Washington Post for most of the last decade, uncovering the secrets, scandals and shortcomings that plague the struggling agency.

--"The Long Slide: Thirty Years in American Journalism" by Tucker Carlson (Threshold Editions, $28) provides a collection of nostalgic writings that highlight our country's long slide from innocence to orthodoxy along with his new commentary and insights. It was Carlson who had his first job out of college fact checking for a quarterly magazine, and he went on to write for many other publications before becoming a Fox News host he is today.

--"Woke, Inc.: Inside Corporate America's Social Justice Scam" by Vivek Ramaswamy (Center Street, $28) attempts to make the case that politics has no place in business and sets a new vision for the future of American capitalism. A successful entrepreneur and CEO who was trained as a scientist at Harvard and a lawyer at Yale, the author provides behind-the-scenes powerful stories that reveal the defining scam of our century.

Jamie H. Vaught, a longtime sports columnist in Kentucky, is the author of five books about UK basketball, including recently-published “Chasing the Cats: A Kentucky Basketball Journey.” He is the editor and founder of Magazine, and a professor at Southeast Kentucky Community and Technical College in Middlesboro. You can follow him on Twitter @KySportsStyle or reach him via email at

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