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Books

King of the Hotheads

Bugsy Siegel was lavishly rewarded for his crimes, we learn in Michael Shnayerson’s new biography, although money didn't really interest him. He wanted fame and respect more, but his impulsive nature gave him a dark reputation he never escaped.

Feb 18, 2021
A Tragedy of Ambition

In “What Becomes a Legend Most,” Philip Gefter shows Richard Avedon to be an eminent fashion photographer driven to be recognized as a great artist but met with disdain from the establishment.

Feb 11, 2021
Life Lessons

Three children’s book authors from hereabouts, Billy Baldwin, Susan Verde, and Kori Peters, boldly go where parents often neglect to tread, broaching the topics of perseverance, gratitude, and the social good.

Feb 4, 2021
Bang, Bang, You’re Dead

The characters in Jeffrey Sussman’s “Big Apple Gangsters” are occupied with bootlegging, garbage collecting, cement mixing, heroin dealing, and killing, mainly each other. The action extends to Mussolini, Batista, J. Edgar Hoover, Joe DiMaggio, and, the coup de grace, Rudy Giuliani.

Jan 28, 2021
The Brains of the Family

In her gripping first novel, “A Most English Princess,” Clare McHugh has seized on the fact that Vicky, the eldest daughter of Queen Victoria, was surely the smartest and most capable of her siblings. Her claim to England’s throne, however, was dashed by her younger brother.

Jan 21, 2021
A Journey Inward

“Being Ram Das” is the memoir of the former Richard Alpert of Boston, whose remarkable journey took him from elite universities, high social status, and hallucinogenic drug use to points near and very far, including, in 1967, to the feet of a blanketed man in the Himalayas.

Jan 14, 2021
The Poet Who Knew Everyone

This collection of Tony Towle’s poems, itself a work of art, contains numerous photos, most black and white by Hans Namuth. Through this lens of a particular time and place in the 1960s, a world opens up, offering a glimpse at a specific historical moment.

Jan 7, 2021
The 10 Best Books of One Tough Year

Kurt Wenzel, novelist, book and theater critic, and the best-read man we know, picks ’em.

Dec 30, 2020
Literature’s Knight-Errant

John Steinbeck couldn’t stop writing. Couldn’t stop rushing out to right injustices. He was a loner who never seemed to be lonely, William Souder writes in “Mad at the World,” his new biography.

Dec 23, 2020
Notes of a Stand-Up Comic

Organized chronologically over the past five decades, Jerry Seinfeld’s “Is This Anything?” is both a history of American habits and preoccupations and also an autobiographical record of the thoughts of an analytically minded American male as he progressed from his 20s to his 60s.

Dec 17, 2020
A Hunt for Holiday Books

Some are surprising; others, considering the times, probably predictable, but here, for your reading pleasure and inspiration, are some of the most popular books we on the East End are giving each other this holiday season.

Dec 17, 2020
The Long Goodbye

“Inside Story” is utterly saturated with death. Paradoxically, it is also one of the liveliest and most entertaining books from Martin Amis since his 2000 memoir, “Experience.”

Dec 10, 2020