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Metro Times - Arts: Detroit gets booked
For a city that's shrinking, Detroit sure gets a lot of play on the bookshelves. From appealing photographic books to auto histories to poetry anthologies, there's plenty of paper to stuff a stocking with this year....
Up the Rouge! (Wayne State, $34.95), for instance. Former Freep journo and active Detroit blogger Joel Thurtell tells of his 2005 canoe journey up the Rouge River. What at first appears to be a stunt quickly develops into an investigation of how the river's environmental quality is ignored.
Newscast for the Masses: The History of Detroit Television News (Wayne State, $24.95), follows the story of local news from its beginnings with WWJ-TV through to the golden age of Bill Bonds and beyond.
The Corvette Factories: Building America's Sports Car (Motorbooks, $40) How Chevrolet built an American legend, churning out the classic sports car.
Storied Independent Automakers: Nash, Hudson and American Motors (Wayne State, $24.95), scholar Charles K. Hyde chronicles the history of the longest-surviving independent and the men who led it, lavishly illustrated with 100 photographs.
Maxwell Motor and the Making of the Chrysler Corporation (Wayne State, $34.95). One of the leading companies in the early pack of Detroit auto producers, Maxwell Motor is now mostly forgotten.
From Autos to Architecture (Princeton Architectural Press, $60), David Gartman argues that Ford's mass production techniques helped inspire the clean lines of modernist architects. Greg Grandin's Fordlandia (Metropolitan Books, $27.50) chronicles Henry Ford's ill-advised attempt to realize a homespun American workers' town in the middle of the Brazilian rain forest.
A Motor City Year (Wayne State, $39.95). In it, photographer John Sobczak encapsulates a year in 365 photographs of the Detroit area, including open-air fairs, sporting events, churches and more.
Detroit: The Black Bottom Community. In this photo history, Jeremy Williams tells the story of the near-eastside neighborhood that thrived when African-Americans could find few other places to live in the segregated city, resulting in a quarter of town that was politically potent, at least until urban renewal and freeway building reduced its main street to a service drive.
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