John McPhee has long been known for taking very specific topics and sussing out everything that makes them interesting.  With his 28th book, McPhee widens the filter and turns his gaze on himself. Silk Parachute (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, $25) sheds light on where the ideas for previous books have come from: McPhee’s experience with canoes as a child, his year at Deerfield Academy, his first glimpse of Bill Bradley playing basketball at Princeton.  This book is like a perfect copy of The New Yorker where every story is captivating and every word is worth reading. 

Silk Parachute Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374263737
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - March 2nd, 2010

Silk Parachute Cover Image
ISBN: 9780374532628
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Farrar, Straus and Giroux - March 1st, 2011

This is the reason for non-fiction writing.

The Boys of My Youth Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316085250
Availability: Backordered
Published: Back Bay Books - January 29th, 1999

In college, I'd wander into the library stacks to write papers only to be distracted by Joseph Frank’s brilliant concatenation of intellectual history, literary criticism, painstaking archival work and soul-searching, which happened to occupy my corner of the stacks. Joseph Frank is the greatest biographer of Dostoevsky in any language; and the academe long viewed with trepidation the prospect that Frank would die before completing his magnum opus. Dostoevsky, the work of thirty-two years and five volumes, seems a worthy use of a life. Now Frank, 91, has overseen a masterful condensation of the 2,500 page original into a single volume fit for popular (albeit of the NYRB sort) consumption. Despite his prodigious literary productivity, Dostoevsky’s life did not lack incident: epileptic fits, the murder of his father, revolutionary intrigue, Siberian exile, gambling away his last pennies in Europe… It all reads a little bit like a Dostoevsky novel.

Dostoevsky: A Writer in His Time Cover Image
ISBN: 9780691155999
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Princeton University Press - August 26th, 2012