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Books in the Time of Corona

UVA Press joins the publishing and reading communities at large in wishing everyone well during the challenging times of Covid-19. For those choosing to maintain their social distance, we have compiled a list of books we think would be inspiring, educational, or simply entertaining to read in the coming weeks as we continue to navigate these uncharted days and weeks. Along with our front and backlist, we are pleased to offer a 30% discount on these titles through the end of June (please use code 10READ). Whether it's home or somewhere far away, here's to the power of imagination and learning to transport us! 

READING THROUGH THE NIGHT by Jane TompkinsReading Through The Night Cover

*Read the review in the Los Angeles Review of Books

The long-awaited new book by award-winning author of A Life in School: What the Teacher Learned, Jane Tompkins’s Reading Through the Night reflects afresh on how reading can become a transformative path to self-discovery.


Life of William Faulkner Book CoverTHE LIFE OF WILLIAM FAULKNER: The Past is Never Dead, 1897-1934

*Read the review in Kirkus Reviews

The most comprehensive biography of William Faulkner in forty-five years, this first of two volumes reveals new information about the American literary icon.


Florence: Map of Perceptions CoverFLORENCE: A Map of Perceptions by Andrea Ponsi

*Read the review in

A Florentine architect's engaging and imaginative descriptions of wandering through the famous old city, and a salute to a particularly hard-hit country. 


MR. AND MRS. DOG: Our Travels, Trials, Adventures, and Epiphanies by Donald McCaig

*Read the review in The Washington Post

This engaging book by New York Times-bestselling author Donald McCaig, whose fiction and nonfiction books on working sheepdogs are well known, details the author's--and his dogs'--unlikely progress toward and participation in the World Sheepdog Trials in Wales. Along the way, he meets and talks with dog trainers advocating several training methodologies.


Buildings of New Orleans CoverBUILDINGS OF NEW ORLEANS by Karen Kingsley and Lake Douglas *Winner of Best Guidebook Award 2019 from the Southeast Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians

*Read the review in Curbed

From the French Quarter and Tremé to the Garden District and Lakefront, up the Mississippi and down the Delta, the definitive guide to the extraordinary buildings and landscapes of the Crescent City.


GIANT'S CAUSEWAY: Frederick Douglass's Irish Odyssey and the Making of an American Visionary by Tom Chaffin

*Read the review in

For vicarious armchair travels (plus a good message) now that we’re cut off from Europe, Giant's Causeway by trade history author Tom Chaffin recounts Frederick Douglass's Irish odyssey as a key episode in his emergence as an independent writer and thinker, getting out from under the tutelage of abolitionist giant William Lloyd Garrison.


SAN FRANCISCO: A Map of Perceptions by Andrea Ponsi

*Read the review in the San Francisco Chronicle

This charming little book from Andrea Ponsi, author of Florence, is a very personal, architect's-eye view of San Francisco, where Ponsi lived for many years. It is thus both an outsider's and an insider's book, in which the author's evocative  prose is well-complemented by his beautiful watercolors.


GODS OF NOONDAY: A White Girl's African Life by Elaine Neil Orr

*Read the review in Publishers Weekly

The daughter of medical missionaries, Elaine Neil Orr was born in Nigeria in 1954, in the midst of the national movement that would lead to independence from Great Britain. But as she tells it in her captivating memoir, Orr did not grow up as a stranger abroad; she was a girl at home—only half American, the other half Nigerian. When she was sent alone to the United States for high school, she didn't realize how much leaving Africa would cost her.


BUILDINGS OF SAVANNAH by Robin B. Williams. With David Gobel, Patrick Haughey, Daves Rossell, and Karl Schuler *Winner of Best Guidebook Award 2018 from the Southeast Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians

*Read the review in Booklist

The most comprehensive, authoritative, and up-to-date guide to the impressive range of the city's architecture--covering some 350 buildings, landscapes, monuments, squares, and parks, enhanced and enlivened by 175 photographs and 21 maps--Buildings of Savannah will be the essential resource for tourists, architects, and residents alike.


READING CONTAGION: The Hazards of Reading in the Age of Print by Annika Mann

*Read about the book in The Washington Post

Illuminates eighteenth-century beliefs that reading threatens to transform the world by creating new embodied collectives and fomenting large-scale epidemics.


THE VALUE OF SOLITUDE: The Ethics and Spirituality of Aloneness in Autobiography by John D. Barbour

*Read the review in The Journal of Religion

Most people feel ambivalent about solitude, both loving and fearing it depending on how they experience being alone at certain points in their lives. In The Value of Solitude, John Barbour explores some of the ways in which experiences of solitude, both positive and negative, have been interpreted as religiously significant. He also shows how solitude can raise ethical questions as writers evaluate the virtues and dangers of aloneness and consider how social interaction and withdrawal can most meaningfully be combined in a life.

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