For immediate release | December 13, 2011

Choice editors preview their favorite books and websites of 2011— full list of Outstanding Academic Titles announced in January 2012 issue

MIDDLETOWN, CONN. Honoring the best in scholarly publishing, Choice’s annual “Outstanding Academic Titles” list is widely recognized in the academic community for its sweeping coverage of the most significant scholarly titles published each year. The full “Outstanding Academic Titles, 2011” list will appear in the January 2012 issue, featuring 629 exceptional titles spanning 54 disciplines. Comprising less than 9 percent of the titles reviewed by Choice during 2011 and 2.5 percent of those submitted during that same time span, these exceptional titles are truly the “best of the best.” The entire list may be viewed on Choice Reviews Online; nonsubscribers can register for a free trial to access this feature.

As a special preview to the full 2011 list, this year the Choice subject editors chose from among the 2011 list their favorite print and digital resources. These diverse picks run the gamut from art, finance and history to philosophy, science and public law and reflect many of the year’s most important academic offerings. The “top” lists can also be viewed on Choice Reviews Online.

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles, 2011: Top 25 Books

  • Age of Greed: The Triumph of Finance and the Decline of America, 1970 to the Present, by Jeff Madrick. Knopf, 2011. 464p ISBN 9781400041718, $30.00. Reviewed in December 2011 Choice.
  • The Age of Persuasion: How Marketing Ate Our Culture, by Terry O'Reilly and Mike Tennant. Counterpoint, 010 (c2009). 324p ISBN 1-58243-580-4 $26.00; ISBN 9781582435800, $26.00. Reviewed in March 2011 Choice.
  • Apollo's Angels: A History of Ballet, by Jennifer Homans. Random House, 2010. 643p ISBN 9781400060603, $35.00. Reviewed in June 2011 Choice.
  • The Belief Instinct: The Psychology of Souls, Destiny, and the Meaning of Life, by Jesse Bering. 1st American ed. W.W. Norton, 2011. 252p ISBN 9780393072990, $26.95. Reviewed in August 2011 Choice.
  • Changing Planet, Changing Health: How the Climate Crisis Threatens Our Health and What We Can Do about It, by Paul R. Epstein and Dan Ferber. California, 2011. 355p ISBN 9780520269095, $29.95. Reviewed in October 2011 Choice.
  • Children of Fire: A History of African Americans, by Thomas C. Holt. Hill and Wang, 2010. 438p ISBN 0-8090-6713-7, $30.00; ISBN 9780809067138, $30.00. Reviewed in May 2011 Choice.
  • China's America: The Chinese View the United States, 1900-2000, by Jing Li. SUNY Press, 2011. 302p ISBN 1-4384-3517-7, $85.00; ISBN 9781438435176, $85.00. Reviewed in October 2011 Choice.
  • Debtor Nation: The History of America in Red Ink, by Louis Hyman. Princeton, 2011. 376p ISBN 9780691140681, $35.00. Reviewed in July 2011 Choice.
  • Exploring Happiness: From Aristotle to Brain Science, by Sissela Bok. Yale, 2010. 218p ISBN 0-300-13929-2, $24.00; ISBN 9780300139297, $24.00. Reviewed in January 2011 Choice.
  • Global Warming Gridlock: Creating More Effective Strategies for Protecting the Planet, by David G. Victor. Cambridge, 2011. 358p ISBN 9780521865012, $40.00. Reviewed in November 2011 Choice.
  • How to Live, or, a Life of Montaigne in One Question and Twenty Attempts at an Answer, by Sarah Bakewell. Other Press LLC, 2011 (c2010). 389p ISBN 9781590514252, $25.00; ISBN 9781590514269 e-book, contact publisher for price. Reviewed in September 2011 Choice.
  • The Information: A History, a Theory, a Flood, by James Gleick. Pantheon Books, 2011. 526p ISBN 9780375423727, $29.95. Reviewed in August 2011 Choice.
  • The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History, by Samuel Moyn. Belknap, Harvard, 2010. 337p ISBN 0-674-04872-5, $27.95; ISBN 9780674048720, $27.95. Reviewed in February 2011 Choice.
  • The Law Is a White Dog: How Legal Rituals Make and Unmake Persons, by Colin Dayan. Princeton, 2011. 343p ISBN 9780691070919, $29.95. Reviewed in October 2011 Choice.
  • Makers: A History of American Studio Craft, by Janet Koplos and Bruce Metcalf. North Carolina, 2010. 529p ISBN 0-8078-3413-0, $65.00; ISBN 9780807834138, $65.00. Reviewed in February 2011 Choice.
  • The Making of a Transnational Capitalist Class: Corporate Power in the Twenty-First Century, by William K. Carroll with Colin Carson et al. Zed Books, 2010. 273p ISBN 9781848134423, $124.95; ISBN 9781848134430, pbk, $37.95. Reviewed in March 2011 Choice.
  • The Powers That Be: Global Energy for the Twenty-First Century and Beyond, by Scott L. Montgomery. Chicago, 2010. 350p ISBN 9780226535005, $35.00. Reviewed in August 2011 Choice.
  • Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788, by Pauline Maier. Simon & Schuster, 2010. 589p ISBN 0-684-86854-7, $30.00; ISBN 9780684868547, $30.00. Reviewed in April 2011 Choice.
  • RNA: Life's Indispensable Molecule, by James Darnell. Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, 2011. 416p ISBN 9781936113194, $39.00 Reviewed in December 2011 Choice.
  • The Routledge Handbook of Urban Ecology, ed. by Ian Douglas et al. Routledge, 2011. 664p ISBN 9780415498135, $240.00; ISBN 9780203839263 e-book, $240.00. Reviewed in November 2011 Choice.
  • Soul Searching: Black-Themed Cinema from the March on Washington to the Rise of Blaxploitation, by Christopher Sieving. Wesleyan, 2011. 265p ISBN 9780819571328, $75.00; ISBN 9780819571332 pbk, $27.95; ISBN 9780819571342 e-book, $14.99 Reviewed in December 2011 Choice.
  • This Violent Empire: The Birth of an American National Identity, by Carroll Smith-Rosenberg. North Carolina, 2010. 484p ISBN 9780807832967, $45.00. Reviewed in February 2011 Choice.
  • The Threat Matrix: The FBI at War in the Age of Terror, by Garrett M. Graff. Little, Brown, 2011. 666p ISBN 9780316068611, $27.99 Reviewed in December 2011 Choice.
  • Triumph of the City: How Our Greatest Invention Makes Us Richer, Smarter, Greener, Healthier, and Happier, by Edward Glaeser. Penguin Press, 2011. 338p ISBN 9781594202773, $29.95. Reviewed in July 2011 Choice.
  • What Is a Person?: Rethinking Humanity, Social Life, and the Moral Good from the Person Up, by Christian Smith. Chicago, 2010. 518p ISBN 9780226765914, $40.00. Reviewed in March 2011 Choice.

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles, 2011: Top 10 Web Sites

For more information, contact Laura Mullen at or (203) 569-9933.



Choice is a publishing unit of the Association of College & Research Libraries, a division of the American Library Association. Founded in 1963, Choice has been the premier review journal for scholarly publications for more than 45 years and is the leading North American source for reviews of new scholarly books and electronic resources.