Bo Knows: Inventing the Ultimate Pitchman

Twenty-five years ago, Bo Jackson famously hit a lead-off bomb in the 1989 All-Star Game just before his first Nike commercial aired. This excerpt from Michael Weinreb’s Bigger Than the Game: Bo, Boz, the Punky QB, and How the ’80s Created the Modern Athlete tells the story behind the campaign.

The Long Shadow of Hillsborough

As the World Cup winds down, the inquest into the Hillsborough disaster that killed 96 football supporters continues in England. Bill Buford reported on the tragedy in his 1990 classic Among the Thugs, excerpted here.

|| Mark Twain sitting at his desk.
Mark Twain’s Escape From Journalism

In this excerpt from The Bohemians, Ben Tarnoff examines the writing of a key work in Mark Twain’s transition from rakish journalist to literary giant, the short story “Jim Smiley and His Jumping Frog.”

|| Author McKenzie Funk
The Booming Business of Global Warming

In Windfall, McKenzie Funk reports on a provocative idea: that global warming, while disastrous for any nation that can’t handle rising sea levels or droughts, may actually be good for the world’s Northern countries.

|| Montreal Expos vs. Houston Astros at the Olympic Stadium, via Flickr user Mike Durkin
Excerpt: Up, Up, & Away

In Up, Up, & Away, author Jonah Keri recounts the history of the bygone Montreal Expos and his connection to the team. In this excerpt, Keri regales us with the tale of an epic 22-inning game, replete with a misbehaving mascot.

|| Frank Sinatra in The Man With the Golden Arm
The Splendid Things We Planned

Bailey’s new memoir explores the limits of fraternal bonds, and how far they can stretch before the strain becomes unbearable. In this excerpt, his addicted, self-destructive brother’s stepmother wants to buy him a new car, exposing a darker side of him.

|| Lagos, Nigeria via Flickr user satanoid
Every Day Is for the Thief

The protagonist at the centre of Teju Cole’s new novel returns to Nigeria for the first time in fifteen years. In this excerpt, the protagonist must decide whether or not it's worth sticking to his principles—something he wrestles with at almost every stage of his journey.

Mandela: ‘History Never Stops to Play Tricks’

A draft from the unpublished sequel to Nelson Mandela’s autobiography, excerpted from Conversations with Myself, a collection of letters, notes, and journal entries.

The Mob Began to Think and Reason

David Graeber, an anthropologist and key figure in the Occupy Wall Street protests, dissects the deeply undemocratic origins of America and the meaning of anarchy in this excerpt from his book The Democracy Project.

Conspiracy of Brothers: The Murder of Bill Matiyek

On October 18th, 1978, Bill Matiyek was murdered in a gangland-style execution in a Port Hope bar. Conspiracy of Brothers, the classic true crime book, tells the story of rival outlaw biker gangs in small-town Ontario and the murder that thrust them into the courtroom.