The Tender Bar
Author: J. R. Moehringer
Publisher: Hachette Books
The New York Times bestseller and one of the 100 Most Notable Books of 2005. In the tradition of This Boy's Life and The Liar's Club, a raucous, poignant, luminously written memoir about a boy striving to become a man, and his romance with a bar. J.R. Moehringer grew up captivated by a voice. It was the voice of his father, a New York City disc jockey who vanished before J.R. spoke his first word. Sitting on the stoop, pressing an ear to the radio, J.R. would strain to hear in that plummy baritone the secrets of masculinity and identity. Though J.R.'s mother was his world, his rock, he craved something more, something faintly and hauntingly audible only in The Voice. At eight years old, suddenly unable to find The Voice on the radio, J.R. turned in desperation to the bar on the corner, where he found a rousing chorus of new voices. The alphas along the bar--including J.R.'s Uncle Charlie, a Humphrey Bogart look-alike; Colt, a Yogi Bear sound-alike; and Joey D, a softhearted brawler--took J.R. to the beach, to ballgames, and ultimately into their circle. They taught J.R., tended him, and provided a kind of fathering-by-committee. Torn between the stirring example of his mother and the lurid romance of the bar, J.R. tried to forge a self somewhere in the center. But when it was time for J.R. to leave home, the bar became an increasingly seductive sanctuary, a place to return and regroup during his picaresque journeys. Time and again the bar offered shelter from failure, rejection, heartbreak--and eventually from reality. In the grand tradition of landmark memoirs, The Tender Bar is suspenseful, wrenching, and achingly funny. A classic American story of self-invention and escape, of the fierce love between a single mother and an only son, it's also a moving portrait of one boy's struggle to become a man, and an unforgettable depiction of how men remain, at heart, lost boys.
The Tender Bar
Author: J R Moehringer
Publisher: Hachette UK
JR Moehringer grew up listening for a voice, the voice of his missing father, a disc jockey who disappeared before JR spoke his first words. As a boy, JR would press his ear to a battered clock radio, straining to hear in that resonant voice the secrets of identity and masculinity. When the voice disappeared, JR found new voices in the bar on the corner. A grand old New York saloon, the bar was a sanctuary for all sorts of men -- cops and poets, actors and lawyers, gamblers and stumblebums. The flamboyant characters along the bar taught JR, tended him, and provided a kind of fatherhood by committee. Torn between his love for his mother and the lure of the bar, JR forged a boyhood somewhere in the middle. When the time came to leave home, the bar became a way station -- from JR's entrance to Yale, where he floundered as a scholarship student; to Lord & Taylor, where he spent a humbling stint peddling housewares; to the New York Times, where he became a faulty cog in a vast machine. The bar offered shelter from failure, from rejection, and eventually from reality, until at last the bar turned JR away. In the rich tradition of bestselling memoirs about self-invention, THE TENDER BAR is by turns riveting, moving, and achingly funny. An evocative portrait of one boy's struggle to become a man, it's also a touching depiction of how some men remain lost boys.
Author: J.R. Moehringer
Publisher: Hachette Books
"Electrifying." --Booklist (starred) Willie Sutton was born in the Irish slums of Brooklyn in 1901, and he came of age at a time when banks were out of control. Sutton saw only one way out and only one way to win the girl of his dreams. So began the career of America's most successful bank robber. During three decades Sutton became so good at breaking into banks, the FBI put him on its first-ever Most Wanted List. But the public rooted for the criminal who never fired a shot, and when Sutton was finally caught for good, crowds at the jail chanted his name. In J.R. Moehringer's retelling, it was more than need or rage that drove Sutton. It was his first love. And when he finally walked free--a surprise pardon on Christmas Eve, 1969--he immediately set out to find her. "What Hilary Mantel did for Thomas Cromwell and Paula McLain for Hadley Hemingway . . . J.R. Moehringer now does for bank robber Willie Sutton." --Newsday "Thoroughly absorbing. . . . Filled with vibrant and colorful re-creations of not one but several times in the American past." --Kevin Baker, author of Strivers Row "[J.R. Moehringer] has found an historical subject equal to his vivid imagination, gimlet journalistic eye, and pitch-perfect ear for dialogue. By turns suspenseful, funny, romantic, and sad--in short, a book you won't be able to put down." --John Burnham Schwartz, author of Reservation Road and The Commoner
Drinking with Men
Author: Rosie Schaap
NPR ?Best Books of 2013” BookPage Best Books of 2013 Library Journal Best Books of 2013: Memoir Flavorwire 10 Best Nonfiction Books of 2013 A vivid, funny, and poignant memoir that celebrates the distinct lure of the camaraderie and community one finds drinking in bars. Rosie Schaap has always loved bars: the wood and brass and jukeboxes, the knowing bartenders, and especially the sometimes surprising but always comforting company of regulars. Starting with her misspent youth in the bar car of a regional railroad, where at fifteen she told commuters' fortunes in exchange for beer, and continuing today as she slings cocktails at a neighborhood joint in Brooklyn, Schaap has learned her way around both sides of a bar and come to realize how powerful the fellowship among regular patrons can be. In Drinking with Men, Schaap shares her unending quest for the perfect local haunt, which takes her from a dive outside Los Angeles to a Dublin pub full of poets, and from small-town New England taverns to a character-filled bar in Manhattan's TriBeCa. Drinking alongside artists and expats, ironworkers and soccer fanatics, she finds these places offer a safe haven, a respite, and a place to feel most like herself. In rich, colorful prose, Schaap brings to life these seedy, warm, and wonderful rooms. Drinking with Men is a love letter to the bars, pubs, and taverns that have been Schaap's refuge, and a celebration of the uniquely civilizing source of community that is bar culture at its best.
Forced from her downtown Manhattan apartment by the terrorist attack of September 11, journalist Wendy Bounds was delivered to Guinan's doorstep -- a legendary Irish drinking hole and country store nestled along the banks of the Hudson River in the small town of Garrison, New York -- by a friend. Captivated by the bar's charismatic but ailing owner and his charming, motley clientele, Bounds uprooted herself permanently and moved to tiny Garrison, the picturesque river town they all call home. There she became one of the rare female regulars at the old pub and was quickly swept up into its rhythm, heartbeat, and grand history -- as related by Jim Guinan himself, the stubborn high priest of this little chapel. Surrounded by a crew of endearing, delightfully colorful characters who were now her neighbors and friends, she slowly finds her own way home. Beautifully written, deeply personal, and brilliantly insightful, Little Chapel on the River is a love story about a place -- and the people who bring it to life.
Author: Tim Sultan
Publisher: Random House
Imagine that Alice had walked into a bar instead of falling down the rabbit hole. In the tradition of J. R. Moehringer’s The Tender Bar and the classic reportage of Joseph Mitchell, here is an indelible portrait of what is quite possibly the greatest bar in the world—and the mercurial, magnificent man behind it. The first time he saw Sunny’s Bar, in 1995, Tim Sultan was lost, thirsty for a drink, and intrigued by the single bar sign among the forlorn warehouses lining the Brooklyn waterfront. Inside, he found a dimly lit room crammed with maritime artifacts, a dozen well-seasoned drinkers, and, strangely, a projector playing a classic Martha Graham dance performance. Sultan knew he had stumbled upon someplace special. What he didn’t know was that he had just found his new home. Soon enough, Sultan has quit his office job to bartend full-time for Sunny Balzano, the bar’s owner. A wild-haired Tony Bennett lookalike with a fondness for quoting Shakespeare and Samuel Beckett, Sunny is truly one of a kind. Born next to the saloon that has been in his family for one hundred years, Sunny has over the years partied with Andy Warhol, spent time in India at the feet of a guru, and painted abstract expressionist originals. But his masterpiece is the bar itself, a place where a sublime mix of artists, mobsters, honky-tonk musicians, neighborhood drunks, nuns, longshoremen, and assorted eccentrics rub elbows. Set against the backdrop of a rapidly transforming city, Sunny’s Nights is a loving and singular portrait of the dream experience we’re all searching for every time we walk into a bar, and an enchanting memoir of an unlikely and abiding friendship. Praise for Sunny’s Nights “Fantastic . . . [Sultan takes] material that might seem familiar and [mixes] a perfect, insightful cocktail: full-bodied, multitextured and delicious. . . . Simply beautiful.”—The New York Times Book Review “Sultan’s love of Red Hook shines through, and it’s hard not to be swept along on the ebb and flow of his emotions. . . . Sultan’s book is, among other things, a meditation on the fragility of the moment and the passage of time. . . . Wistful, funny and biting, Sunny’s Nights rewards you with its evocation of a certain place in time and, as Sultan calls him, ‘the most original man I have ever met.’”—Newsday “An affectionate portrait of the idiosyncratic Sunny’s Bar.”—USA Today “Sultan finds Sunny . . . a real character, a poet, a cinephile, a philosopher, bluegrass maestro and (Rheingold) beer server.”—New York Post (“Required Reading”) “Captivating . . . a classic story about a local bar.”—The Buffalo News “An enchanting memoir, a profound meditation on place and a beautiful story of an unlikely and abiding friendship.”—Brooklyn Daily Eagle “[A] polished, affecting look at remarkable barkeep Sunny Balzano . . . In elegant prose, Sultan deploys laconic humor, an instinct for telling details, a taste for eccentricity, and above all, clear-eyed compassion for our all-too-human failings.”—Publishers Weekly (starred review) “Beautifully wrought . . . an indelible portrait of an unusual man and a nearly forgotten part of NYC.”—Booklist “More than an elegy for a bar and a neighborhood—it’s also a vivid and loving portrait of the larger-than-life eccentric who gave the bar its name and its spirit.”—Tom Perrotta, author of The Leftovers From the Hardcover edition.
Author: Andre Agassi
A candid memoir by the tennis champion includes coverage of his Grand Slam wins, establishment of a charitable foundation for underprivileged children and marriage to Stefanie Graf.
Author: Ty Wenzel
A Lower East Side woman bartender recounts how her temporary withdrawl from corporate America turned into a ten-year position at Marion's Continental Restaurant and Lounge, during which she learned insider secrets and encountered a host of celebrities. Reprint. 20,000 first printing.
Author: George Hodgman
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER FINALIST FOR THE NATIONAL BOOK CRITICS CIRCLE AWARD “A beautifully crafted memoir, rich with humor and wisdom.” —Will Schwalbe, author of The End of Your Life Book Club “The idea of a cultured gay man leaving New York City to care for his aging mother in Paris, Missouri, is already funny, and George Hodgman reaps that humor with great charm. But then he plunges deep, examining the warm yet fraught relationship between mother and son with profound insight and understanding.” —Alison Bechdel, author of Fun Home When George Hodgman leaves Manhattan for his hometown of Paris, Missouri, he finds himself—an unlikely caretaker and near-lethal cook—in a head-on collision with his aging mother, Betty, a woman of wit and will. Will George lure her into assisted living? When hell freezes over. He can’t bring himself to force her from the home both treasure—the place where his father’s voice lingers, the scene of shared jokes, skirmishes, and, behind the dusty antiques, a rarely acknowledged conflict: Betty, who speaks her mind but cannot quite reveal her heart, has never really accepted the fact that her son is gay. As these two unforgettable characters try to bring their different worlds together, Hodgman reveals the challenges of Betty’s life and his own struggle for self-respect, moving readers from their small town—crumbling but still colorful—to the star-studded corridors of Vanity Fair. Evocative of The End of Your Life Book Club and The Tender Bar, Hodgman’s New York Times bestselling debut is both an indelible portrait of a family and an exquisitely told tale of a prodigal son’s return. From the Hardcover edition.
Girl Walks Into a Bar
Author: Strawberry Saroyan
Publisher: Random House Incorporated
A memoir of the sometimes difficult road from girlhood to womanhood describes the author's coming of age amid the skyscrapers of New York and the haven of a low-rent L.A. bar, capturing the complex life of the twenty-first century.
Take This Man
Author: Brando Skyhorse
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
The award-winning author of The Madonnas of Echo Park traces his turbulent childhood under the shadow of his dynamic mother and five stepfathers, describing how his mother reinvented their pasts in ways that challenged the author's efforts to reconnect with his biological father.
The Last Resort
Author: Douglas Rogers
Thrilling, heartbreaking, and, at times, absurdly funny, The Last Resort is a remarkable true story about one family in a country under siege and a testament to the love, perseverance, and resilience of the human spirit. Born and raised in Zimbabwe, Douglas Rogers is the son of white farmers living through that country’s long and tense transition from postcolonial rule. He escaped the dull future mapped out for him by his parents for one of adventure and excitement in Europe and the United States. But when Zimbabwe’s president Robert Mugabe launched his violent program to reclaim white-owned land and Rogers’s parents were caught in the cross fire, everything changed. Lyn and Ros, the owners of Drifters–a famous game farm and backpacker lodge in the eastern mountains that was one of the most popular budget resorts in the country–found their home and resort under siege, their friends and neighbors expelled, and their lives in danger. But instead of leaving, as their son pleads with them to do, they haul out a shotgun and decide to stay. On returning to the country of his birth, Rogers finds his once orderly and progressive home transformed into something resembling a Marx Brothers romp crossed with Heart of Darkness: pot has supplanted maize in the fields; hookers have replaced college kids as guests; and soldiers, spies, and teenage diamond dealers guzzle beer at the bar. And yet, in spite of it all, Rogers’s parents–with the help of friends, farmworkers, lodge guests, and residents–among them black political dissidents and white refugee farmers–continue to hold on. But can they survive to the end? In the midst of a nation stuck between its stubborn past and an impatient future, Rogers soon begins to see his parents in a new light: unbowed, with passions and purpose renewed, even heroic. And, in the process, he learns that the "big story" he had relentlessly pursued his entire adult life as a roving journalist and travel writer was actually happening in his own backyard. Evoking elements of The Tender Bar and Absurdistan, The Last Resort is an inspiring, coming-of-age tale about home, love, hope, responsibility, and redemption. An edgy, roller-coaster adventure, it is also a deeply moving story about how to survive a corrupt Third World dictatorship with a little innovation, humor, bribery, and brothel management. From the Hardcover edition.
Born on the Bayou
Author: Blaine Lourd
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
In the tradition of the modern classics The Tender Bar and The Liars’ Club, Blaine Lourd writes a powerful Gothic memoir set in the bayous and oil towns of 1970s Louisiana. In this rags-to-riches memoir of finding your way and becoming a man, Blaine Lourd renders his childhood in rural Louisiana with his larger-than-life father, Harvey “Puffer” Lourd, Jr., a charismatic salesman during the exploding 1980s awl bidness. From cleaning a duck to drinking a beer, Puffer guides Blaine through the twists and turns of growing up, ultimately pointing him to a poignant truth: sometimes those you love the most can inflict the most pain. Set against a lush landscape of magnolia trees and majestic old homes, haunted swamps and swimming holes filled with wildlife, Lourd gets to the heart of being a Southerner with rawness and grace, beautifully detailing what it means to have a place so ingrained in your being. Just as the timeless memoirs All Over but the Shoutin’ and The Liar’s Club evoke the muggy air of a Southern summer and barrels of steaming crawfish, so does Blaine’s contemporary exploration of what it means to find yourself among the bayous and back roads. Charting his journey from his rural home to working the star-studded streets of Los Angeles as a financial advisor to the rich and famous, Blaine’s story is about the complicated path to success and identity. With witty grace and candid prose, he pays homage to family bonds, unwavering loyalty, and deep roots that cannot be severed, no matter how hard you try.
Son of a Gun
Author: Justin St. Germain
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks
Recounts the murder of the author's mother in September 2001 and explores the crime against a backdrop of a shattering national tragedy and the author's efforts to distance himself from the legendary Tombstone, Arizona, of his youth.
The Clancys of Queens
Author: Tara Clancy
Publisher: Broadway Books
Fifth-generation New Yorker, third-generation bartender, and first-generation author Tara Clancy was raised in three wildly divergent homes: a converted boat shed in working-class Queens, a geriatric commune of feisty Brooklyn-born Italians, and a sprawling Hamptons estate she visited every other weekend. From scheming and gambling with her force-of-nature grandmother, to brawling with eleven-year-old girls on the concrete recess battle yard of MS 172, to hours lounging on Adirondack chairs next to an immaculate croquet lawn, to holding court beside Joey O'Dirt, Goiter Eddy, and Roger the Dodger at her dad's local bar, Tara leapfrogs across these varied spheres, delivering stories from each world with originality, grit, and outrageous humor. Chock-full of characters who escape the popular imaginings of New York City, it offers a bold portrait of real people, whose stories are largely absent from our shelves. Most crucially, it captures--an inimitable prose--the rarely heard voices of New York's working-class women. --