Shining Stars | The Best Arts & Humanities Books of the Year (So Far)

Wonderful books on a range of arts and artists.


Dace, Roz & Judy Balchin. Needle Felting Dolls: A Complete Course in Sculpting Figures. Search Pr. Feb. 2023. 176p. ISBN 9781800920132. pap. $31.95.

Flendt, Jemima. Quilt It, Crochet It!: Sew and Stitch 14 Colorful Designs. Landauer. Mar. 2023. 96p. ISBN 9781639810093. pap. $19.99.

Gelder, Claire. Pocket Book of Knitting. Search Pr. Apr. 2023. 128p. ISBN 9781800920729. $16.95.

Ho, Nghi. Macramé: The Power of Knots. Yellow Pear Pr. May 2023. 212p. ISBN 9781684811083. pap. $34.99.

Kim, Heegyum. Drawing Class: Animals: Learn To Draw with Simple Shapes and Online Tutorials. Quarry: Quarto. Mar. 2023. 128p. ISBN 9780760379332. pap. $16.99.

McLeary, Susan. Flowers for All: Modern Floral Arrangements for Beauty, Joy, and Mindfulness Every Day. Chronicle. Feb. 2023. 172p. ISBN 9781797215662. $22.95.

Olsson, Carina. Fair Isle Knitting: 22 Traditional Patterns from Where the Atlantic Meets the North Sea. Trafalgar Square. May 2023. 176p. ISBN 9781646011933. $31.95.

Opatrny, Tova. Professor Pincushion’s Beginner Guide to Sewing: Garment Making for Nervous Newbies. C&T/Stash. Nov. 2022. 112p. ISBN 9781644032428. pap. $27.95.

Win, Ohn Mar. Go with the Flow Painting: Step-by-Step Techniques for Spontaneous Effects in Watercolor. Quarry: Quarto. Oct. 2022. 128p. ISBN 9780760377727. pap. $24.99.


Hodgkins, Lisa. Everyday Fashion in Found Photographs: American Women of the Late 19th Century. Bloomsbury Visual Arts. Nov. 2022. 304p. ISBN 9781350249899. pap. $37.95; ISBN 9781350249851. $115.

Threads of Power: Lace from the Textilmuseum St. Gallen. Bard Graduate Ctr. Jan. 2023. 432p. ed. by Emma Cormack & Michele Majer. ISBN 9780300263497. $75.

Vermeer. Thames & Hudson. May 2023. 320p. ed. by Pieter Roelofs & Gregor J.M. Weber. ISBN 9780500026724. $65.


Ciuraru, Carmela. Lives of the Wives: Five Literary Marriages. Harper. Feb. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9780062356918. $29.99.

Darkshire, Oliver. Once Upon a Tome: The Misadventures of a Rare Bookseller. Norton. Mar. 2023. 256p. ISBN 9781324092070. $27.95.

Smiley, Jane. The Questions That Matter Most: Reading, Writing, and the Exercise of Freedom. Heyday. Jun. 2023. 256p. ISBN 9781597146050. $30.

Wanting: Women Writing About Desire. Catapult. Feb. 2023. 352p. ed. by Margot Kahn & Kelly McMasters. ISBN 9781646220113. pap. $17.95.


Anderson, Tre’vell. We See Each Other: A Black, Trans Journey Through TV and Film. Andscape. May 2023. 240p. ISBN 9781368081733. $26.99. FILM

Bailey, Fenton. ScreenAge: How TV Shaped Our Reality from Tammy Faye to RuPaul’s Drag Race. Ebury. Mar. 2023. 384p. ISBN 9781529148466. $39.95. POP CULTURE

Bartlett Daniels, Bonnie. Middle of the Rainbow. BearManor. Jan. 2023. 221p. ISBN 9798887710440. pap. $25. MEMOIR

Blecha, Peter. Stomp and Shout: R&B and the Origins of Northwest Rock and Roll. Univ. of Washington. Jan. 2023. 290p. ISBN 9780295751252. $29.95. MUSIC

Boyle, Deirdre. Ferryman of Memories: The Films of Rithy Panh. Rutgers Univ. Mar. 2023. 270p. ISBN 9781978814646. $34.95. FILM

Brady, Frank. Citizen Welles: A Biography of Orson Welles. Univ. Pr. of Kentucky. Apr. 2023. 880p. ISBN 9780813197135. pap. $40. BIOGRAPHY

Brown, Nic. Bang Bang Crash. Counterpoint. Feb. 2023. 224p. ISBN 9781640094406. pap. $16.95. MEMOIR

Byrne, Christopher. A Man of Much Importance: The Art and Life of Terrence McNally. Applause. Jul. 2023. 360p. ISBN 9781493053773. $34.95. BIOGRAPHY

Coleman, Robin R. Means & Mark H. Harris. The Black Guy Dies First: Black Horror Cinema from Fodder to Oscar. Gallery. Feb. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9781982186531. pap. $19.99. FILM

Conversations with Terrence McNally. Univ. Pr. of Mississippi. Jan. 2023. 208p. ed. by Raymond-Jean Frontain. ISBN 9781496843227. pap. $25. THEATER

The Encyclopedia of LGBTQIA+ Portrayals in American Film. Rowman & Littlefield. Oct. 2022. 456p. ed. by Erica Joan Dymond & Salvador Jiménez Murguía. ISBN 9781538153901. $125. FILM

Fernandez, Maria Elena. And Don’t F&%k It Up: An Oral History of RuPaul’s Drag Race (The First Ten Years). Grand Central. Jun. 2023. 496p. ISBN 9781538717660. $30. TV

Giacomazzo, Bernadette. The Golden Girls: A Cultural History. Rowman & Littlefield. Aug. 2023. 224p. ISBN 9781538166550. $36. TV

Howe, Matt. Barbra Streisand: The Music, the Albums, the Singles. Fayetteville Mafia. Apr. 2023. 304p. ISBN 9781949024449. $59.99. MUSIC

Jacobson, Matthew Frye. Dancing Down the Barricades: Sammy Davis Jr. and the Long Civil Rights Era. Univ. of California. Feb. 2023. 344p. ISBN 9780520391802. $29.95. BIOGRAPHY

Levit, Igor & Florian Zinnecker. House Concert. Polity. Jan. 2023. 224p. tr. from German by Shaun Whiteside. ISBN 9781509553556. $27.50. MUSIC

Mann, William J. Bogie & Bacall: The Surprising True Story of Hollywood’s Greatest Love Affair. Harper. Jun. 2023. 656p. ISBN 9780063026391. $35. BIOGRAPHY

Mask, Mia. Black Rodeo: A History of the African American Western. Univ. of Illinois. Feb. 2023. 272p. ISBN 9780252086977. pap. $24.95. FILM

McCartney, Paul. 1964: Eyes of the Storm. Liveright: Norton. Jun. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9781324093060. $75. PHOTOGRAPHY

McCormick, Robert “Mack.” Biography of a Phantom: A Robert Johnson Blues Odyssey. Smithsonian. Apr. 2023. 264p. ed. by John W. Troutman. ISBN 9781588347343. $29.95. BIOGRAPHY

Mordden, Ethan. Gays on Broadway. Oxford Univ. Jun. 2023. 232p. ISBN 9780190063108. $29.95. THEATER

Napier-Bell, Simon. Black Vinyl White Powder: The Real Story of the British Music Industry. Unbound. Apr. 2023. 576p. ISBN 9781800181656. pap. $18.95. MUSIC

Pollack, Howard. Samuel Barber: His Life and Legacy. Univ. of Illinois. Apr. 2023. 744p. ISBN 9780252044908. $59.95. MUSIC

Rannells, Andrew. Uncle of the Year: & Other Debatable Triumphs. Crown. May 2023. 256p. ISBN 9780593443439. $28. MEMOIR

Smith, Zadie. The Wife of Willesden. Penguin Books. Feb. 2023. 208p. ISBN 9780593653739. pap. $16. THEATER

Solomon, Brian. Superheroes!: The History of a Pop-Culture Phenomenon from Ant-Man to Zorro. Applause. May 2023. 352p. ISBN 9781493064519. pap. $26.95. POP CULTURE

Turner, Guinevere. When the World Didn’t End: A Memoir. Crown. May 2023. 336p. ISBN 9780593237595. $28. MEMOIR

Uzarowski, Anthony. Jessica Lange: An Adventurer’s Heart. Univ. Pr. of Kentucky. Jun. 2023. 304p. ISBN 9780813197258. $34.95. BIOGRAPHY

Ware, Martyn. Electronically Yours, Vol. I: My Autobiography. Constable. Mar. 2023. 336p. ISBN 9780349135151. $28.99. MEMOIR


Ehrman, Bart D. Armageddon: What the Bible Really Says About the End. S. & S. Mar. 2023. 272p. ISBN 9781982147990. $27.99.

Hummel, Daniel G. The Rise and Fall of Dispensationalism: How the Evangelical Battle over the End Times Shaped a Nation. Eerdmans. May 2023. 400p. ISBN 9780802879226. $29.99.

Moore, Beth. All My Knotted-Up Life: A Memoir. Tyndale House. Feb. 2023. 304p. ISBN 9781496472670. $27.99.

Murphy-Gill, Meghan. The Sacred Life of Bread: Uncovering the Mystery of an Ordinary Loaf. Broadleaf. Jun. 2023. 239p. ISBN 9781506482231. $25.99.

Schedneck, Brooke. Living Theravada: Demystifying the People, Places, and Practices of a Buddhist Tradition. Shambhala Publications. Apr. 2023. 272p. ISBN 9781611809718. pap. $24.95.

Teter, Magda. Christian Supremacy: Reckoning with the Roots of Antisemitism and Racism. Princeton Univ. May 2023. 400p. ISBN 9780691242583. $35.


Brown, Ashley. Serving Herself: The Life and Times of Althea Gibson. Oxford Univ. Feb. 2023. 576p. ISBN 9780197551752. $29.95.

Brown, Tim, with Erik Kratz. The Tao of the Backup Catcher: Playing Baseball for the Love of the Game. Twelve: Grand Central. Jul. 2023. 304p. ISBN 9781538726556. $30.

Runstedtler, Theresa. Black Ball: Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Spencer Haywood, and the Generation That Saved the Soul of the NBA. Bold Type. Mar. 2023. 368p. ISBN 9781645036951. $29.

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