Science writers get into the game with all kinds of noble, high-minded ambitions. We want to educate. To enlighten,” notes guest editor Amy Stewart in her introduction to The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2016. “But at the end of the day, we’re all writers . . . We’re here to play for the folks.” The writers in this anthology brought us the year’s highest notes in the genre. From a Pulitzer Prize–winning essay on the earthquake that could decimate the Pacific Northwest to the astonishing work of investigative journalism that transformed the nail salon industry, this is a collection of hard-hitting and beautifully composed writing on the wonders, dangers, and oddities of scientific innovation and our natural world. The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2016 includes Kathryn Schulz, Sarah Maslin Nir, Charles C. Mann, Oliver Sacks, Elizabeth Kolbert, Gretel Ehrlich, and others Amy Stewart, guest editor, is the award-winning author of seven books, including her acclaimed Kopp Sisters novels and the bestsellers The Drunken Botanist and Wicked Plants. She and her husband live in Eureka, California, where they own a bookstore called Eureka Books. Tim Folger, series editor, is a contributing editor at Discover and writes about science for several magazines. He lives in Gallup, New Mexico.
The Best American Series The next edition in a series praised as “undeniably exquisite” (Maria Popova), The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2015 includes work from both award-winning writers and up-and-coming voices in the field. From Brooke Jarvis on deep-ocean mining to Elizabeth Kolbert on New Zealand’s unconventional conservation strategies, this is a group that celebrates the growing diversity in science and nature writing alike. Altogether, the writers honored in this year’s volume challenge us to consider the strains facing our planet and its many species, while never losing sight of the wonders we’re working to preserve for generations to come. The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2015 includes Sheri Fink, Atul Gawande, Leslie Jamison, Sam Kean, Seth Mnookin, Matthew Power, Michael Specter and others REBECCA SKLOOT's award-winning science writing has appeared in the New York Times Magazine and elsewhere. Her book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, was an instant New York Times bestseller. It was named a best book of 2010 by more than sixty media outlets, including Entertainment Weekly and NPR, and by the National Academies of Science and the American Association for the Advancement of Science, among others. Skloot is currently writing a book about humans, animals, science, and ethics. TIM FOLGER, series editor, is a contributing editor at Discover and writes about science for several magazines.
“Undeniably exquisite . . . The essays in the collection [are] meditations that reveal not only how science actually happens but also who or what propels its immutable humanity.” — Maria Popova, Brain Pickings “A stimulating compendium.” — Kirkus Reviews Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist and author Deborah Blum selects the year’s top science and nature writing from writers who balance research with humanity and in the process uncover riveting stories of discovery across the disciplines.
Best-selling author of The Disappearing Spoon, The Violinist’s Thumb, and more, Sam Kean, selects the year’s top science and nature writing, looking for writers who balance research with humanity and in the process uncover riveting stories of discovery across the disciplines.
For a decade, Ecco has published the most outstanding science writing in America, collected in highly acclaimed annual volumes edited by some of the most impressive and most important names in science and science writing today: James Gleick, Timothy Ferris, Matt Ridley, Oliver Sacks, Dava Sobel, Alan Lightman, Atul Gawande, Gina Kolata, Sylvia Nasar, and Natalie Angier. Now series editor Jesse Cohen invites the previous guest editors to select their favorite essays for this one-of-a-kind anthology. The result is an outstanding compendium—the best science writing of the new millennium, featuring an introduction by the series' 2010 editor and New York Times bestselling author of How Doctors Think, Jerome Groopman.
Why do I travel? Why does anyone of us travel? Bill Bryson poses these questions in his introduction to The Best American Travel Writing 2016, and though he admits, “I wasn’t at all sure I knew the answer,” they are questions worthy of examination. While the various contributors to this collection all travel for different reasons, one thing is for certain—they come back with stories. Whether traversing the Arctic by dogsled, attending a surreal film festival in North Korea, or strolling the streets of a fast-changing Havana, their insights into the world and the human condition are illuminating and enthralling, providing an answer: This is why I like to travel. The Best American Travel Writing 2016 includes Michael Chabon, Alice Gregory, Paul Theroux, Dave Eggers, Helen Macdonald, Sara Corbett, Stephanie Pearson,Thomas Chatterton Williams, Pico Iyer, and others BILL BRYSON, guest editor, is the best-selling author of A Walk in the Woods; A Short History of Nearly Everything; One Summer: America, 1927; The Road to Little Dribbling; and numerous other books. JASON WILSON, series editor, is the author of Boozehound: On the Trail of the Rare, the Obscure, and the Overrated in Spirits; Spaghetti on the Wall; and the forthcoming Why Wine Matters. He has written for the Washington Post Magazine, The New Yorker, the New York Times, and many other publications, and has won awards for Best Food Column from the Association of Food Journalists four times.
Pulitzer Prize–winning author Siddhartha Mukherjee, a leading cancer physician and researcher, selects the year’s top science and nature writing from journalists who dive into their fields with curiosity and passion, delivering must-read articles from a wide array of fields.
A true essay is “something hazarded, not definitive, not authoritative; something ventured on the basis of the author’s personal experience and subjectivity,” writes guest editor Jonathan Franzen in his introduction. However, his main criterion for selecting The Best American Essays 2016 was, in a word, risk. Whether the risks involved championing an unpopular opinion, the possibility of ruining a professional career, or irrevocably offending family, for Franzen, “the writer has to be like the firefighter, whose job, while everyone else is fleeing the flames, is to run straight into them.” The Best American Essays 2016 includes ALEXANDER CHEE, PAUL CRENSHAW, JAQUIRA DÍAZ, LAURA KIPNIS, AMITAVA KUMAR, SEBASTIAN JUNGER, JOYCE CAROL OATES, OLIVER SACKS, THOMAS CHATTERTON WILLIAMS and others JONATHAN FRANZEN, guest editor, is the author of five novels, most recently Purity, and five works of nonfiction and translation, including Farther Away and The Kraus Project. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, the German Akademie der Künste, and the French Ordre des Arts et des Lettres. ROBERT ATWAN, the series editor of The Best American Essays since its inception in 1986, has published on a wide variety of subjects, from American advertising and early photography to ancient divination and Shakespeare. His criticism, essays, humor, poetry, and fiction have appeared in numerous periodicals nationwide.
“The Best American Travel Writing has been the gold standard for short-form travel writing from newspapers, magazines, and the Internet since its inception.” —New York Times Book Review Everyone travels for different reasons, but whatever those reasons are, one thing is certain—they come back with stories. Each year, the best of those stories are collected in The Best American Travel Writing, curated by one of the top writers in the field, and each year they “open a window onto the strange, seedy and beautiful world, offering readers glimpses into places that many will never see or experience except through the eyes and words of these writers" (Kirkus Reviews). This far-ranging collection of top notch travel writing is, quite simply, the genre’s gold standard.
Author: Sid Holt
Publisher: Columbia University Press
Release Date: 2016-12-06
Genre: Language Arts & Disciplines
This year’s Best American Magazine Writing features outstanding writing on contentious issues including incarceration, policing, sexual assault, labor, technology, and environmental catastrophe. Selections include Paul Ford’s ambitious “What Is Code?” (Bloomberg Businessweek), an innovative explanation of how programming works, and “The Really Big One,” by Kathryn Schulz (The New Yorker), which exposes just how unprepared the Pacific Northwest is for a major earthquake. Joining them are Meaghan Winter’s exposé of crisis pregnancy centers (Cosmopolitan) and a chilling story of police prejudice that allowed a serial rapist to run free (the Marshall Project in partnership with ProPublica). Also included is Shane Smith’s interview with Barack Obama about mass incarceration (Vice). Other selections demonstrate a range of long-form styles and topics across print and digital publications. The imprisoned hacker and activist Barrett Brown pens hilarious dispatches from behind bars, including a scathing review of Jonathan Franzen’s fiction (The Intercept). “The New American Slavery” (Buzzfeed) documents the pervasive exploitation of guest workers, and Luke Mogelson explores the purgatorial fate of an undocumented man sent back to Honduras (New York Times Magazine). Joshua Hammer harrowingly portrays Sierra Leone’s worst Ebola ward as even the staff succumb to the disease (Matter). And in “The Friend,” Matthew Teague’s wife is afflicted with cancer, his friend moves in, and the result is a devastating narrative of relationships and death (Esquire). The collection concludes with Jenny Zhang’s “How It Feels,” an unconventional meditation on the intersection of teenage cruelty and art (Poetry).
The debut collection of a writer whose accolades precede her: a Whiting Award, a Rona Jaffe Award, a Best American Essays selection, and a Pushcart Prize, all received before her first book-length publication. This book represents a major break-out of an entirely new brand of nonfiction writer, in a mode like that of Ander Monson, John D'Agata, and Eula Biss, but a new sort of beast entirely its own. Things That Are takes jellyfish, fainting goats, and imperturbable caterpillars as just a few of its many inspirations. In a series of essays that progress from the tiniest earth dwellers to the most far flung celestial bodies—considering the similarity of gods to donkeys, the inexorability of love and vines, the relations of exploding stars to exploding sea cucumbers—Amy Leach rekindles a vital communion with the wild world, dormant for far too long. Things That Are is not specifically of the animal, the human, or the phenomenal; it is a book of wonder, one the reader cannot help but leave with their perceptions both expanded and confounded in delightful ways.
From quiet, elegiac, contemporary tales to far-future, deep-space sagas, the stories chosen by series editor John Joseph Adams and guest editor Karen Joy Fowler for The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016 demonstrate the vast spectrum of what science fiction and fantasy aims to illuminate, displaying the full gamut of the human experience, interrogating our hopes and our fears—of not just what we can accomplish or destroy as a person, but what we can accomplish or destroy as a people—and throwing us into strange new worlds that can only be explored when we shed the shackles of reality. The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016 includes Rachel Swirsky, Sofia Samatar, Charlie Jane Anders, Ted Chiang, Kelly Link, Maria Dahvana Headley, Kij Johnson, Catherynne M. Valente, Dexter Palmer and others KAREN JOY FOWLER, guest editor, is the author of six novels and four short story collections, including We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves. She is the winner of the 2014 PEN/Faulkner Award, a finalist for the Man Booker Prize, and has won numerous Nebula and World Fantasy awards. JOHN JOSEPH ADAMS, series editor, is the best-selling editor of more than two dozen anthologies, including Brave New Worlds and Wastelands. He is the editor and publisher of the digital magazines Lightspeed and Nightmare and is the editor of John Joseph Adams Books, a new science fiction/fantasy novel imprint from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.