Positive Vibrations: Politics, Politricks and the Story of Reggae

Its beach-party vibe belies the music’s power and reach.

Corporate Rock Sucks: The Rise and Fall of SST Records

Meet the Svengali behind some of the biggest punk acts of the 1980s.

The Man Who Invented Motion Pictures: A True Tale of Obsession, Murder, and the Movies

It’s this book’s account of history, not homicide, that’s truly riveting.

The Barbizon

By Paulina Bren

The Barbizon

This otherwise informative history is hamstrung by its fixation on Sylvia Plath’s notorious suicide.

Citizen Cash: The Political Life and Times of Johnny Cash

The country icon was less neutral than he sometimes appeared.

American Comics: A History

A detailed account of the rise, fall, and potential resurrection of graphic storytelling in the U.S.

The Hag: The Life, Times, and Music of Merle Haggard

This biography’s rough-around-the-edges feel fits its subject perfectly.

The Lyrics: 1956 to the Present

An expansive compilation — and confirmation — of the master’s genius.