"Nothing is harder / on the soul / than the smell of dreams / while they are evaporating."––Mahmoud Darwish. Stop the Deportations!

––City Lights storefront, July 2017

 

City Lights is a landmark independent bookstore and publisher that specializes in world literature, the arts, and progressive politics.

Founded in 1953 by poet Lawrence Ferlinghetti and Peter D. Martin, City Lights is one of the truly great independent bookstores in the United States, a place where booklovers from across the country and around the world come to browse, read, and just soak in the ambiance of alternative culture's only "Literary Landmark."... Read more>>

 

 

 

New at City Lights Bookstore


 

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What We Lose
Zinzi Clemmons
From an author of rare, haunting power, a stunning novel about a young African-American woman coming of age—a deeply felt meditation on race, sex, family, and country Raised in Pennsylvania, Thandi views the world of her mother's childhood in Johannesburg as both impossibly distant and ever present.

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Arbitrary Stupid Goal
Tamara Shopsin
A philosophical (and illustrated) NYC voyage to the art of everyday ecstasy; Shopsin's refrigerator of wisdom contains pounds of plastic grapes, menus 35 years long, and crossword puzzle correspondences. —Recommended by Ryan

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Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings
Joy Harjo
More than a book. More than poetry. These are the words.—Recommended by Ryan

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The Changeling
Victor LaValle
When Apollo Kagwa's father disappeared, all he left his son were strange recurring dreams and a box of books stamped with the word IMPROBABILIA. —Recommended by Tân & Paul

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Epistrophies
Jazz and the Literary Imagination
Brent Hayes Edwards
In 1941 Thelonious Monk and Kenny Clarke copyrighted "Epistrophy," one of the best-known compositions of the bebop era. The song's title refers to a literary device—the repetition of a word or phrase at the end of successive clauses—that is echoed in the construction of the melody. —Recommended by Paul & Scott

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Book of Mutter
Kate Zambreno
Composed over thirteen years, Kate Zambreno's Book of Mutter is a tender and disquieting meditation on the ability of writing, photography, and memory to embrace shadows while in the throes -- and dead calm -- of grief. —Recommended by Cassie

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On Tyranny
Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century
Timothy Snyder
The Founding Fathers tried to protect us from the threat they knew, the tyranny that overcame ancient democracy. Today, our political order faces new threats, not unlike the totalitarianism of the twentieth century. We are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or communism.

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The Hidden Life of Trees
What They Feel, How They Communicate—Discoveries from a Secret World
Peter Wohlleben
Are trees social beings? In this international bestseller, forester and author Peter Wohlleben convincingly makes the case that, yes, the forest is a social network. He draws on groundbreaking scientific discoveries to describe how trees are like human families.

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Large Animals
Stories
Like telling a joke at a funeral. Like getting the spins in a friend's car. Like losing a limb but gaining some costume-shop wings. —Recommended by Ivy

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South and West
From a Notebook
Joan Didion
From the best-selling author of the National Book Award-winning The Year of Magical Thinking: two extended excerpts from her never-before-seen notebooks–writings that offer an illuminating glimpse into the mind and process of a legendary writer.

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mary wants to be a superwoman
Erica Lewis
Being of African American, Native American, and white descent, erica lewis' poems recount her friends and family's—especially the women's—complex history with race, gender, and class in America, what it means to live with your own history, and how to move on.

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The Complete Stories of Leonora Carrington
Leonora Carrington
Reader, devour me if this quote tickles you at all, "he had golden skin like the corpse of a child preserved in an old and excellent liquor." —Recommended by Cassie & Ivy

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White Tears
Hari Kunzru
White Tears is a ghost story, a terrifying murder mystery, a timely meditation on race, and a love letter to all the forgotten geniuses of American music and Delta Mississippi Blues. —Recommended by Paul

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Evicted
Poverty and Profit in the American City
Matthew Desmond
In this brilliant, heartbreaking book, Matthew Desmond takes us into the poorest neighborhoods of Milwaukee to tell the story of eight families on the edge. Arleen is a single mother trying to raise her two sons on the $20 a month she has left after paying for their rundown apartment. Scott is a gentle nurse consumed by a heroin addiction.

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The Ecstasy of St. Kara
Kara Walker, New Work
Kara Walker
A VERY LIMITED EDITION!! Kara Walker's work astutely examines race, gender, and identity. Walker's newest series of large-scale drawings stem from her consideration of monuments and notions of permanence and impermanence following her massive public art project, A Subtlety, in Brooklyn.

   

New and Forthcoming from City Lights Publishers

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Storming the Wall
Climate Change, Migration, and Homeland Security
Todd Miller
Fast-paced frontline reportage chronicling how climate change is accelerating migration, border build-up, and militarization in the U.S. and beyond.

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Breaking Through Power
It's Easier Than We Think
Ralph Nader
"Anybody who says that they don't know what to do and that they're horrified by what's going on in Washington—this is the book for you to start with."—Ralph Nader discussing his new book Breaking Through Power: It’s Easier Than We Think

"For those interested in resisting, I highly recommend Breaking Through Power."—Tavis Smiley


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Heaven Is All Goodbyes
Pocket Poets Series No. 61
Tongo Eisen-Martin
"This is resistance as sound."—Claudia Rankine

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Like a Dog
Tara Jepsen
"[Like a Dog] announces a singular new voice in American fiction—one which is deeply alive, hard-hitting, and tender."––Maggie Nelson

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Behind the Moon
Madison Smartt Bell
One of "O Magazine's" Top 20 Books to Read This Summer: "a kind of primal storytelling that crackles with dread and desire."

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Whistleblower at the CIA
An Insider's Account of the Politics of Intelligence
Melvin A. Goodman
Russia expert and former CIA analyst Mel Goodman tells the inside story of political corruption at the organization, and what he did to try to stop it.

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Have Black Lives Ever Mattered?
Mumia Abu-Jamal
"A must-read for anyone interested in social justice and inequalities, social movements, the criminal justice system, and African American history. An excellent companion to Michelle Alexander's "The New Jim Crow" and Ava DuVernay's documentary "13th"."—Library Journal, Starred Review

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Rad American Women A-Z
Rebels, Trailblazers, and Visionaries Who Shaped Our History . . . and Our Future!
Kate Schatz, Miriam Klein Stahl
New York Times Bestseller! A book for children—and their parents, teachers, and cool grown-up friends—documenting America's famous and unsung heroines.

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Selected Poems of Malcolm Lowry
Pocket Poets Series Number 17
Malcolm Lowry, Earle A. Birney
First collection of Lowry's poetic canon, including most of the Mexican verses related to his novel, Under the Volcano.

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On to the Next Dream
Paul Madonna
The tech gentrification of San Francisco, forcing out everyone from artists to middle-income families, captured in a first-person illustrated story.

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Holy Ghost
City Lights Spotlight No. 15
David Brazil
Anarcho-socialism meets Christian mysticism in an Occupy veteran's avant-garde poems.

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Lost Profiles
Memoirs of Cubism, Dada, and Surrealism
Philippe Soupault
A literary retrospective of a crucial period in modernism—the transition from Dada to Surrealism––via portraits and encounters with its literary lions, including Joyce, Proust, Reverdy, Apollinaire, Crevel and more by the co-founder of the Paris surrealist group.

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In Memory of an Angel
David Shapiro
The first full-length collection in fifteen years from New York School prodigy and master of lyrical abstraction David Shapiro.

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Mephistos and Other Poems
Michael McClure
Eco-poetic innovations and ecstatic meditations from a founding member of the Beat Generation.

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America at War with Itself
Henry A. Giroux
An eye-opening critique of how America's drift toward authoritarian intolerance is dividing the nation and intensifying social and political conflicts.

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Save Twilight: Selected Poems
Pocket Poets Number 53
Julio Cortázar
Newly expanded edition of a classic: the first and only collection of Cortázar's poetry to appear in English.