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By Brian Lamb, Susan Swain, C-Span, Mark Farkas. 2011
The Supreme Court grew out of an historic opportunity to interview all of the living Supreme Court justices for a…C-SPAN feature documentary about the Court, the only time that the nine sitting members and their retired colleagues have granted interviews to a single television network. Eleven of those interviews-the entire current court, including the newest member, Justice Elena Kagan-are gathered here in this singular collection. In their conversations with the justices, Brian Lamb and Susan Swain bring readers into a fascinating world to which few have had access. Chief Justice John Roberts talks about the role of the Court in society, his role as chief justice, and the process of deciding cases. Justice Stephen Breyer takes us on a private tour of his chambers and describes the differences between the Court and the Congress. And new Justices Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan reflect on their first impressions of the job. Through these encounters, the justices' personalities, intellects, and devotion to the Court emerge. Enriching this material are Mark Farkas's interviews with journalists, court historians, and other experts on the Court. Reporters Joan Biskupic and Lyle Denniston discuss the Supreme Court in action and the impact of a new member of the Court. Clerk of the Supreme Court William Suter illuminates the traditions of the Court. Historian James O'Hara discusses the Supreme Court building and its history. Former Solicitor General Drew Days III and attorney Maureen Mahoney describe the experience of facing the justices in fast-paced oral arguments. The Supreme Court offers readers a rare window into the nation's highest court through the eyes of those who serve there. It is absorbing reading for anyone interested in this vital and powerful institution.
Despite all the airtime devoted to Amanda Knox, it's still hard to reconcile the fresh-faced honor student from Seattle with…the sexually rapacious killer convicted of the November 2007 murder of her British roommate. Few Americans have heard all of the powerful evidence that convinced a jury that Knox was one of three people to sexually assault Meredith Kercher, brutalize her body, and cut her throat. In Angel Face, Rome-based Daily Beast senior writer Barbie Latza Nadeau - who cultivated personal relationships with the key figures in both the prosecution and the defense - describes how the Knox family's heavy-handed efforts to control media coverage distorted the facts, inflamed an American audience, and painted an offensive, inaccurate picture of Italy's justice system. An eye-opener for any parent considering sending a child away to study, Angel Face reveals what really went on in this incomprehensible crime.
Foppish, impulsive, and philandering: William Jackson was every Georgian parent’s worst nightmare. Gentlemen were expected to be honorable and virtuous,…but William was the opposite, much to the dismay of his father, a well-to-do representative of the East India Company in Madras. In The Profligate Son, historian Nicola Phillips meticulously reconstructs William’s life from a recently discovered family archive, describing how his youthful misbehavior reduced his family to ruin. At first, William seemed destined for a life of great fortune, but before long, he was indulging regularly in pornography and brothels and using his father’s abundant credit to swindle tradesmen. Eventually, William found himself in debtor’s prison and then on a long, typhus-ridden voyage to an Australian penal colony. He spent the rest of his days there, dying a pauper at the age of thirty-seven. A masterpiece of literary nonfiction as dramatic as any Dickens novel, The Profligate Son transports readers from the steamy streets of India, to London’s elegant squares and seedy brothels, to the sunbaked shores of Australia, tracing the arc of a life long buried in history.