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New & Noteworthy, From Abraham Lincoln to Dogs and Their People


ALL THE POWERS OF EARTH: The Political Life of Abraham Lincoln Vol. 3, 1856-1860, by Sidney Blumenthal. (Simon & Schuster, $35.) The third volume of Blumenthal’s monumental biography covers the Lincoln-Douglas debates and lays the groundwork for Lincoln’s ascent to power.

OUR DOGS, OURSELVES: The Story of a Singular Bond, by Alexandra Horowitz. (Scribner, $28.) In previous books, Horowitz has focused on dogs’ extraordinary sense of smell and other aspects of canine biology. Here, she looks at their relationship to people, with a fond eye for human eccentricity.

THE NATURE OF LIFE AND DEATH: Every Body Leaves a Trace, by Patricia Wiltshire. (Putnam, $27.) A British forensic ecologist, Wiltshire studies the natural world for clues to criminal activity: part Discovery Channel, part “C.S.I.” Her autobiography will change the way you view your environment.

DEFENDING ISRAEL: The Story of My Relationship With My Most Challenging Client, by Alan M. Dershowitz. (All Points, $28.99.) The Harvard law professor has been steadfast in his support for Israel. Here, he explains his position in the face of sometimes turbulent politics.

ABOUT US: Essays From the Disability Series of The New York Times, edited by Peter Catapano and Rosemarie Garland-Thomson. (Liveright, $27.95.) From The Times, powerful essays celebrate difference and acknowledge adversity.

Apparently, for me, it’s the summer of the unruly woman. After reading Ottessa Moshfegh’s and Taffy Brodesser-Akner’s latest novels, I landed on THREE WOMEN, Lisa Taddeo’s nonfiction book about desire. These all seem to be burbling up from the same cultural wellspring; if I’m optimistic, maybe it’s because we’re inching closer to allowing women to publicly explore the ways their sexual lives have been shaped, and to interrogate why sexual agency, strength, trauma, victimhood or liberation end up ripe for judgment. One of the women Taddeo profiles gives her real name, and shares in detail how her sex life was shaped, traumatically, by men who should have known better — including a teacher. Her story belongs to her, and is told with a nuance that local news coverage failed to capture. There are mixed reviews of this book, critiquing who was picked (all three subjects are white) as well as its prose. But the triumph, to me, is that it reads like the start of a conversation.

—Katie Rogers, White House correspondent


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