A thrilling and compassionate account for shark enthusiasts.
An exploration of the resurgence of white sharks along the coast of New England.
In this highly accessible work of narrative nonfiction, marine biologist and white shark expert Skomal, a regular on the Discovery Channel’s megahit Shark Week, describes the lives of white sharks and chronicles his career tracking them over three decades. The author details his professional and educational career, including encounters he has had with this magnificent animal. From an early age, Skomal was interested in studying sharks. He recalls the effect watching the first episode of The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau had on his career choice as well as his desire to become the real-life Matt Hooper from Jaws. He also points to professionals in the field that had a profound influence on his career path. Alongside his personal story, the author provides a history of white shark research and management in the New England area, including the first successful tagging program in the U.S. As he notes, due to difficulties in studying white sharks, we still do not know much about them, and what we do know, we’ve only learned relatively recently. Over the last decade, due to the increased number of white sharks in the New England area, shark encounters are on the rise. While their return is a conservation success story, it is also creating debate about public safety. Following a fatal shark attack in the area in 2018, the first in more than 80 years, Skomal shared these words of caution: “We all revere these animals, but on a rare occasion they remind us that they are powerful predators that make mistakes.” Skomal’s enthusiasm for sharks and his desire to help others better understand their behavior are consistently apparent. “My professional goal has always been to be not only a good shark biologist,” he writes, “but also a public ambassador for white sharks.”A thrilling and compassionate account for shark enthusiasts.
Pub Date: July 11, 2023
Page Count: 368
Review Posted Online: May 1, 2023
Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 1, 2023
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A blissfully vicarious, heartfelt glimpse into the life of a Manhattan burlesque dancer.
Awards & Accolades
New York Times Bestseller
A former New York City dancer reflects on her zesty heyday in the 1970s.
Discovered on a Manhattan street in 2020 and introduced on Stanton’s Humans of New York Instagram page, Johnson, then 76, shares her dynamic history as a “fiercely independent” Black burlesque dancer who used the stage name Tanqueray and became a celebrated fixture in midtown adult theaters. “I was the only black girl making white girl money,” she boasts, telling a vibrant story about sex and struggle in a bygone era. Frank and unapologetic, Johnson vividly captures aspects of her former life as a stage seductress shimmying to blues tracks during 18-minute sets or sewing lingerie for plus-sized dancers. Though her work was far from the Broadway shows she dreamed about, it eventually became all about the nightly hustle to simply survive. Her anecdotes are humorous, heartfelt, and supremely captivating, recounted with the passion of a true survivor and the acerbic wit of a weathered, street-wise New Yorker. She shares stories of growing up in an abusive household in Albany in the 1940s, a teenage pregnancy, and prison time for robbery as nonchalantly as she recalls selling rhinestone G-strings to prostitutes to make them sparkle in the headlights of passing cars. Complemented by an array of revealing personal photographs, the narrative alternates between heartfelt nostalgia about the seedier side of Manhattan’s go-go scene and funny quips about her unconventional stage performances. Encounters with a variety of hardworking dancers, drag queens, and pimps, plus an account of the complexities of a first love with a drug-addled hustler, fill out the memoir with personality and candor. With a narrative assist from Stanton, the result is a consistently titillating and often moving story of human struggle as well as an insider glimpse into the days when Times Square was considered the Big Apple’s gloriously unpolished underbelly. The book also includes Yee’s lush watercolor illustrations.A blissfully vicarious, heartfelt glimpse into the life of a Manhattan burlesque dancer.
Pub Date: July 12, 2022
Page Count: 192
Publisher: St. Martin's
Review Posted Online: July 27, 2022
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by Pamela Anderson ‧ RELEASE DATE: Jan. 31, 2023
A juicy story with some truly crazy moments, yet Anderson's good heart shines through.
The iconic model tells the story of her eventful life.
According to the acknowledgments, this memoir started as "a fifty-page poem and then grew into hundreds of pages of…more poetry." Readers will be glad that Anderson eventually turned to writing prose, since the well-told anecdotes and memorable character sketches are what make it a page-turner. The poetry (more accurately described as italicized notes-to-self with line breaks) remains strewn liberally through the pages, often summarizing the takeaway or the emotional impact of the events described: "I was / and still am / an exceptionally / easy target. / And, / I'm proud of that." This way of expressing herself is part of who she is, formed partly by her passion for Anaïs Nin and other writers; she is a serious maven of literature and the arts. The narrative gets off to a good start with Anderson’s nostalgic memories of her childhood in coastal Vancouver, raised by very young, very wild, and not very competent parents. Here and throughout the book, the author displays a remarkable lack of anger. She has faced abuse and mistreatment of many kinds over the decades, but she touches on the most appalling passages lightly—though not so lightly you don't feel the torment of the media attention on the events leading up to her divorce from Tommy Lee. Her trip to the pages of Playboy, which involved an escape from a violent fiance and sneaking across the border, is one of many jaw-dropping stories. In one interesting passage, Julian Assange's mother counsels Anderson to desexualize her image in order to be taken more seriously as an activist. She decided that “it was too late to turn back now”—that sexy is an inalienable part of who she is. Throughout her account of this kooky, messed-up, enviable, and often thrilling life, her humility (her sons "are true miracles, considering the gene pool") never fails her.A juicy story with some truly crazy moments, yet Anderson's good heart shines through.
Pub Date: Jan. 31, 2023
Page Count: 256
Publisher: Dey Street/HarperCollins
Review Posted Online: Dec. 5, 2022
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2023
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