If you, like us, are counting down to the 5th annual Ideas We Should Steal Festival, held this year on the evening of December 14 and all day on December 15, get a jumpstart on the excitement by reading the books of the speakers who’ll be there.
There are nine featured books for this year’s Festival — all of them are available for purchase in person or online at Head House Books, the official bookseller for the Festival. Shop in person at 619 S. 2nd Street; call to order (215) 923-9525; order online, or pick up these books at Head House Books’ pop-up shop at the Festival on December 15. (Synopses from each of their publishers are below.)
Bonus: Throughout the entire month of December, Head House will donate 20 percent of sales — of these and any other books — to The Citizen if you mention “The Philadelphia Citizen” in the comments section at checkout.
by Jill Abramson
The former executive editor of The New York Times provides a report on the disruption of the news media over the last decade, as shown via two legacy and two upstart companies plowing through a revolution that pits old versus new media. “A marvelous book” Merchants of Truth is the groundbreaking and gripping (The New York Times Book Review), story of the precarious state of the news business.
by Emily Bazelon
Bazelon shows how prosecution in America is at a crossroads and details the damage overzealous prosecutors can do — and also the second chances they can extend, if they choose. In Charged, Emily Bazelon mounts a major critique of the American criminal justice system — and tells the story of the movement for change.
by Father Greg Boyle
Gregory Boyle, the beloved Jesuit priest and author of the inspirational bestsellers Tattoos on the Heart and Barking to the Choir, returns with a call to witness the transformative power of tenderness, rooted in his lifetime of experience counseling gang members in Los Angeles.
by Jane Golden
Mural Arts Philadelphia has created more than 3,600 murals and public art projects that have made lasting imprints in every Philadelphia neighborhood. In the process, Mural Arts has engaged thousands of people of all ages from across the city, helped hundreds of ex-offenders train for new jobs, transformed the face of struggling commercial corridors, and developed funding partners in both public and private sectors.
by Will Guidara
Will Guidara was 26 when he took the helm of Eleven Madison Park, a struggling two-star brasserie that had never quite lived up to its majestic room. Eleven years later, Eleven Madison Park was named the best restaurant in the world.
Featuring sparkling stories of his journey through restaurants, with the industry’s most famous players like Daniel Boulud and Danny Meyer, Guidara urges us all to find the magic in what we do — for ourselves, the people we work with, and the people we serve.
by Marc Morjé Howard
In Unusually Cruel, Marc Morjé Howard argues that the American criminal justice and prison systems are exceptional — in a truly shameful way. Although other scholars have focused on the internal dynamics that have produced this massive carceral system, Howard provides the first sustained comparative analysis that shows just how far the U.S. lies outside the norm of established democracies. And, by highlighting how other countries successfully apply less punitive and more productive policies, he provides plausible solutions to addressing America’s criminal justice quagmire.
by Michael A. Nutter
Detailing the important tasks that mayoral administrations do, former Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter tells the compelling story of a dedicated staff working together to positively affect the lives of the people of Philadelphia every day. His anecdotes, advice, and insights will excite and interest anyone with a desire to understand municipal government.
by Jennifer Rubin
From the White House to Congress, from activists to protestors, from liberals to conservatives, Resistance delivers the first comprehensive portrait of women’s historic political surge provoked by the horror of President Donald Trump. This is the indelible story of how American women transformed their own lives, vanquished Trump, secured unprecedented positions of power and redefined U.S. politics decades to come.
by Andrew Yang
In The War on Normal People, Andrew Yang paints a dire portrait of the American economy. Rapidly advancing technologies like artificial intelligence, robotics and automation software are making millions of Americans’ livelihoods irrelevant. In The War on Normal People, Yang imagines a different future — one in which having a job is distinct from the capacity to prosper and seek fulfillment.