Each of the volumes in Daniel J. Boorstin’s three-volume work, The Americans, received a prestigious prize at the time of its original publication. The Colonial Experience won the Bancroft Prize, The National Experience received the Francis Parkman Prize, and The Democratic Experience was awarded the Pulitzer Prize. Now each volume is available as a Vintage Book, with their respective prices being $6.95, $8.95, and $7.95. Louisiana has come out with a paper edition of the late historian T. Harry Williams’ The History of American Wars: From 1745 to 1918, a work The New Yorker deemed as “sage, well-balanced, and authoritative” [$9,95]. War is also the subject of an Indiana reprint by another Williams, the war being the Civil War, the author being the late Kenneth P. Williams, and the title being Lincoln Finds a General: A Military Study of the Civil War, Volume One [$27.50 cloth, $10.95 paper]. Publication of this volume, covering the period from Fort Sumter to the initial phase of Antietam, represents the first step in reissuing the entire five-volume set. A veteran of the Civil War is the chief protagonist in a recent Bison Book, Custer’s Fall: The Indian Side of the Story, about the massacre of Lieutenant Colonel George Armstrong Custer and his men at the Little Big Horn on June 25, 1876 [$21.50 cloth, $7.95 paper]. Also available in Nebraska’s Bison Book series is Virgil E. Baugh’s Rendezvous at the Alamo: Highlights in the Lives of Bowie, Crockett, and Travis [$19.95 cloth, $7.95 paper]. Oxford has come out with a second edition of Henry J. Abraham’s Justices & Presidents: A Political History of Appointments to the Supreme Court [$24.95 cloth, $9.95 paper]. Two recent Touchstone Books are, respectively, James MacGregor Burns’ The Power to Lead: The Crisis of the American Presidency [$8.95] and Edith Efron’s The Apocalyptics: How Environmental Politics Controls What We Know about Cancer [$10.95]. Carroll & Graf is offering a paper edition of Pierre Berton’s The Klondike Fever: The Life and Death of the Last Great Gold Rush, a work first published in 1958 [$10.95]. A new offering in the Basic Books/Harper Colophon Books series is Harvey Klehr’s The Heyday of American Communism: The Depression Decade [$12.95]. Algonquin Books has a paper edition of John K. Terres’ From Laurel Hill to Siler’s Bog: The Walking Adventures of a Naturalist, winner of the John Burroughs Medal for Distinguished Nature Writing. [$12.95], Kentucky has republished Kent Hollingsworth’s The Kentucky Thoroughbred, an account of how the Sport of Kings developed in the Bluegrass State [$17.00 cloth].
“Mr. Ambrose has done an outstanding job. . . . The most complete and objective work yet on the general who became president.” So wrote veteran New York Times reporter Drew Middleton of Eisenhower: Soldier, General of the Army, President-Elect, 1890—1952 when Volume 1 of Stephen Ambrose’s two-volume biography of Dwight David Eisenhower first appeared in 1983. The second volume, Eisenhower the President, was greeted with equal acclaim upon its publication the following year, and both volumes have now been reissued as Touchstone Books [$12.95 each]. Another Touchstone Book is Peter Ackroyd’s T.S. Eliot: A Life, which Time described as “the most detailed portrait yet of an enigmatic and thoroughly peculiar genius” [$12.95]. Another famous poet is the subject of the late Paul Zweig’s Walt Whitman: The Making of the Poet, a work critic Quentin Anderson deemed “the best account of Whitman’s genesis as a poet” [Basic Books, $8.95]. The life and work of a third famous poet are examined in a series of essays edited and introduced by Edward Butscher under the title Sylvia
Plath: The Woman and the Work, a paper edition of which has been published by Dodd, Mead [$9.95]. California has brought out a handsome edition of Robert Latham’s The Shorter Pepys, a one-volume collection of excerpts—and “and the juciest gossip”—from the 11 volumes of the complete diaries [$28.50 cloth]. Novelist Sybille Bedford’s Aldous Huxley: A Biography has been reissued by Carroll & Graf [$14.95 paper], a work called “one of the masterpieces of biography” by Stephen Spender. Drew Gilpin Faust’s James Henry Hammond and the Old South: A Design for Mastery, a biography of an antebellum South Carolina proslavery ideologue, won both the Charles S. Sydnor and Jules F. Landry awards and is again available from Louisiana [$8.95 paper]. Holt, Rinehart & Winston has brought out a paper edition of Arnold Samuelson’s With Hemingway: A Year in Key West and Cuba, an account of a 22-year-old aspiring writer’s year (1934—35) as a Caribbean companion of Ernest Hemingway before he became a living legend known as “Papa” [$7.95]. Vintage Books has republished Antonia Fraser’s The Weaker Vessel, a chronicle of women in 17th-century England that the New York Times described as “alive with anecdote after anecdote” [$9.95]. A recent Harvest/HBJ Book is Virginia Woolf’s Moments of Being: Unpublished Autobiographical Writings, which British writer Angus Wilson regarded as “by far the most important book about Virginia Woolf. . .that has appeared since her death [$3.95].
The Penguin Poetry Library, a paper series devoted to the publication of selections from the works of Britain’s greatest poets, is offering ten new volumes, and they are, respectively; Arnold, with selections by Kenneth Allott [$4.95]; Byron, with selections by A.S.B. Glover [$5.95]; Coleridge, prose and poems selected by Kathleen Raine [$4.95]; Dryden, with selections by Douglas Grant [$5. 95]; Keats, with selections by J.E. Morpurgo [$3.95]; Milton, with selections by Laurence D. Lerner [$4.95]; Pope, with selections by Douglas Grant [$3.95]; Shelley, with selections by Isabel Quigley [$4.95]; Tennyson, with selections by W.E. Williams [$3.95]; and Wordsworth, with selections by W.E. Williams [$3.95]. One of Wordsworth’s poetic achievements is The Fourteen-Book Prelude, an autobiographical poem that Wordsworth spent decades shaping and revising before its first publication in 1850. Wordsworthian scholar W.]. B. Owen has edited a new edition of this work for the Cornell Wordsworth, which Choice has called “one of the great scholarly enterprises of our time,” a project under the general editorship of Stephen Parrish [$99.50 cloth]. One of the most famous poems of all time is Dante’s Inferno, and a new edition of the Italian classic translated and illustrated by Tom Phillips has been published by Thames & Hudson, with 138 color illustrations [$39.95 cloth]. Among 20th-century American poets Robert Frost has few peers, and a selection of his poems with an introduction and commentary by Louis Untermeyer can be found in The Road Not Taken, recently reprinted in Holt, Rinehart & Winston’s Owl Book series [$8.95 paper], A new Johns Hopkins Paperback is Eric J. Sundquist’s Faulkner: The House Divided, an examination of William Faulkner’s complex attitudes toward the Civil War, Jim Crow, racial violence, and segregation [$8.95, also in the original $19.50 cloth edition]. Yale has come out with a paper edition of Gary Wihl’s Ruskin and the Rhetoric of Infallibility, a new analysis of the Victorian critic’s works [$17.50]. A recent Vintage Book is Peter Brooks’ Reading for the Plot: Design and Intention in Narrative, which The Times Literary Supplement cited as “a major book by a major critic” [$10.95]. Also available as a Vintage Book is Robert Fitzgerald’s acclaimed translation of Virgil’s The Aeneid [$4.95].
A literary sensation—and runaway best seller—when it was published in 1944, Lillian Smith’s Strange Fruit violated a longtime taboo of segregated Southern society by centering around the love between a black woman and a white man. A new edition of this first novel by Lillian Smith has been published by Georgia, with a foreword by Fred Hobson [$9.95 paper]. Carroll & Graf has reprinted four of Joseph Conrad’s Sea Stories, including “The Nigger of the Narcissus” [$8.95 paper]. North Point is offering a new edition of James Selter’s A Sport and a Pastime, the story of a love affair between a Yale dropout and a French village shop-girl [$7.50 paper]. Washington has issued a new edition of Toshi Mori’s Yokohama, California, with an introduction by William Saroyan, the first collection of short stories by a Japanese American originally published in 1949 [$7.95 paper]. A recent addition to Harper’s Perennial Library series is Victoria Geng’s Partners, a comic collection of satiric pieces on topics varying from the Supreme Court to Watergate [$6.95 paper]. Dover has a new edition of Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne’s The Wrong Box, a madcap farce Stevenson and his stepson brought out in 1889 [$3.95 paper]. Touchstone Books has reissued Nikos Kazantzakis’s The Odyssey: A Modern Sequel [$12.95]. Vintage Books has new editions of two of Empire of the Sun author J.G. Ballard’s earlier novels, they being, respectively, Crash [$3.95], and Concrete Island [also $3.95], An addition to Holt, Rinehart & Winston’s Owl Book series is Richard Miller’s Snail, a picaresque novel ranging from wartime Germany to Khomeini’s Iran [$7.95 paper]. Swallow Press has reprinted Janet Lewis’s Against a Darkening Sky, a story about a semirural community south of San Francisco in the 1930’s [$22.50 cloth, $9.95 paper]. Basil Blackwell has a paper edition of Alain Robbe-Grillet’s Dans la labyrinthe, an experimental novel by one of France’s most experimental authors [$9. 95].
The Washington Monthly’s Book of the Year for 1984, Strobe Talbott’s Deadly Gambits, presented a colorful and sometimes chilling report of nuclear arms control negotiations under the Reagan administration. To Atlantic Monthly writer James Fallows, it was “by far the most instructive account of how the Administration’s nuclear policies were made.” Vintage Books has a new edition of this account, updated to include developments that led to the Geneva summit with Gorbachev [$7.95]. Atheneum has reprinted Olivia Manning’s The Remarkable Expedition, that being the story of African explorer Henry Stanley’s rescue of Emin Pasha from equatorial Africa in the late 19th century, a work first published in 1947 [$12.95 cloth]. Two recent Atheneum paperbacks are James Chambers’ The Devil’s Horsemen: The Mongol Invasion of Europe [$7.95] and Roland Huntford’s The Last Place on Earth, it being the South Pole and the book being the basis for the Masterpiece Theatre series this fall on the race to be the first to reach it between Norwegian Roald Amundsen and Briton Robert Scott [$9.95], Geddes MacGregor’s Scotland Forever Home: An Introduction to the Homeland for American and Other Scots is a recent Dodd, Mead reprint [$11.95 paper]. Recent Touchstone Books include Herman Kahn’s Thinking about the Unthinkable in the 1980’s [$8.95], George Gilder’s The Spirit of Enterprise [$8.95], Harvey Cox’s The Seduction of the Spirit [$8.95], Richard Reeves’ Passage to Peshawar [$7.95], and Susan Weidman Schneider’s Jewish and Female: A Guide and Sourcebook for Today’s Jewish Woman [$12.95]. Cornell is offering a paper edition of Patrick Brantlinger’s Bread & Circuses: Theories of Mass Culture as Social Decay [$9.95].