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Your Shelf Life: 5 Books to Read in November

A curated list of this month's top reads


In Zadie Smith’s new novel, Swing Time, two black childhood girlfriends dream of becoming dancers, but only one has true talent. The other becomes an assistant to a pop star and their fractured friendship haunts them both.

Michael Chabon pens a novel imagined from the deathbed revelations of his dying grandfather. In Moonglow, he weaves truth and fiction with the threads of his grandfather’s wild streaks and complicated marriage.

John Simpson, former chief editor of the Oxford English Dictionary, has written a memoir about his 40 years with the OED in The Word Detective.

Phaidon publishes a guidebook to midcentury modern architecture called Mid-Century Modern Architecture Travel Guide: West Coast USA, featuring photos by San Diego–based Darren Bradley.

The Daily Show (The Book): An Oral History documents the comedy show’s years of groundbreaking coverage and behind-the-scenes antics, including interviews with Jon Stewart.

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