New in Paperback: ‘The World’s Fastest Man’ and ‘Our Time Is Now’

By Jennifer Krauss

THE WORLD’S FASTEST MAN: The Extraordinary Life of Cyclist Major Taylor, America’s First Black Sports Hero, by Michael Kranish. (Scribner, 384 pp., $19.) This biography by a Washington Post political reporter “makes plain,” John Swansburg wrote in his review, that Taylor, who “faced discrimination, or worse, at every turn,” succeeded in large part because of his “remarkable perseverance, in and out of the velodrome.”

THE BUTTERFLY LAMPSHADE, by Aimee Bender. (Anchor, 304 pp., $16.95.) Ever since she lost her mother to psychosis as a child and woke up to a dead butterfly floating in a glass of water, the narrator of this “compact surrealist memory box of a novel” — as our reviewer, Kevin Brockmeier, called it — has been transfixed by the memory.

HOAX: Donald Trump, Fox News, and the Dangerous Distortion of Truth, by Brian Stelter. (Atria, 448 pp., $18.) CNN’s chief media correspondent has added a new prologue and 12 new chapters on the election and the Capitol raid to the paperback edition. Our reviewer, David Enrich, deemed the book an important volume in a growing library “documenting this strange period in American history.”

VERITAS: A Harvard Professor, a Con Man, and the Gospel of Jesus’s Wife, by Ariel Sabar. (Anchor, 432 pp., $17.) Sabar’s “madcap, unforgettable book,” about Karen King’s 2012 “discovery” that Jesus was married to Mary Magdalene, is for “enthusiasts of ancient Christianity,” “readers of idea-driven capers” and “anyone who likes watching snooty academics brought low.”

WHY I DON’T WRITE: And Other Stories, by Susan Minot. (Vintage, 176 pp., $16.) “After 30 years away from the short story,” Justin Taylor wrote in his review of Minot’s long-awaited second collection, “it is good to have her back, cleareyed and fearless as ever, whispering difficult truths and ambiguities that a less assured writer would feel compelled to shout.”

OUR TIME IS NOW: Power, Purpose, and the Fight for a Fair America, by Stacey Abrams. (Picador, 320 pp., $18.) Rather than “a political memoir or a long-form résumé,” our reviewer, Tayari Jones, explained, Abrams has delivered “a striking manifesto,” “a stirring indictment” and “a straightforward road map to victory. … Every good politician is a storyteller, and Abrams is a novelist with several titles under her belt.”

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