For immediate release | December 11, 2012

Choice releases 2012 Outstanding Academic Titles lists

Middletown, Conn. Celebrating the best in scholarly publishing, Choice’s annual Outstanding Academic Titles (OAT) 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 2012 list will appear in the January 2013 issue of Choice, featuring 644 exceptional titles.

Again this year, the Choice subject editors chose from the list their 25 favorite print titles and 10 digital resources. Their choices for 2012 represent the diversity of the OAT lists, with topics ranging from art, African American history, evolution and Islam, to prisons, poverty, music and life in general. The top lists can also be viewed on the Choice Reviews Online website.

For more information, contact Choice Marketing Coordinator Laura Mullen at (203) 569-9933 or

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles, 2012: Top 25 Books

  • Are Muslims Distinctive?: A Look at the Evidence, by M. Steven Fish. Oxford, 2011. 385p ISBN 9780199769209, $99.00; ISBN 9780199769216 pbk, $27.95. Reviewed in January 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Brain: Big Bangs, Behaviors, and Beliefs, by Rob DeSalle and Ian Tattersall. Yale, 2012. 354p ISBN 9780300175226, $29.95. Reviewed in November 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Controversy of Renaissance Art, by Alexander Nagel. Chicago, 2011. 358p ISBN 9780226567723, $60.00. Reviewed in February 2012 CHOICE.
  • A Cultural History of Physics, by Simonyi, Károly, tr. by David Kramer. CRC Press, 2012. 622p ISBN 1-56881-329-5, $59.00; ISBN 9781568813295, $59.00. Reviewed in July 2012 CHOICE.
  • Engineering the Financial Crisis: Systemic Risk and the Failure of Regulation, by Jeffrey Friedman and Wladimir Kraus. Pennsylvania, 2011. 210p ISBN 0-8122-4357-9, $45.00; ISBN 9780812243574, $45.00. Reviewed in August 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Evolved Apprentice: How Evolution Made Humans Unique, by Kim Sterelny. MIT, 2012. 242p ISBN 9780262016797, $35.00. Reviewed in September 2012 CHOICE.
  • Hamas and Civil Society in Gaza: Engaging the Islamist Social Sector, by Sara Roy. Princeton, 2011. 319p ISBN 9780691124483, $35.00. Reviewed in March 2012 CHOICE.
  • In Pursuit of the Unknown: 17 Equations That Changed the World, by Ian Stewart. Basic Books, 2012. 342p ISBN 9780465029730, $26.99. Reviewed in September 2012 CHOICE.
  • An Infinity of Nations: How the Native New World Shaped Early North America, by Michael Witgen. Pennsylvania, 2012. 450p ISBN 0-8122-4365-X , $45.00; ISBN 9780812243659, $45.00. Reviewed in September 2012 CHOICE.
  • Life upon These Shores: Looking at African American History, 1513-2008, by Henry Louis Gates, Jr. Knopf, 2011. 487p ISBN 0-307-59342-8, $50.00; ISBN 9780307593429, $50.00. Reviewed in May 2012 CHOICE.
  • Masters of the Planet: The Search for Our Human Origins, by Ian Tattersall. Palgrave Macmillan, 2012. 266p ISBN 9780230108752, $26.00. Reviewed in December 2012 CHOICE.
  • Moral Origins: The Evolution of Virtue, Altruism, and Shame, by Christopher Boehm. Basic Books, 2012. 418p ISBN 9780465020485, $28.99; ISBN 9780465029198 e-book, contact publisher for price. Reviewed in October 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Music between Us: Is Music a Universal Language?, by Kathleen Marie Higgins. Chicago, 2012. 277p ISBN 9780226333281, $40.00. Reviewed in November 2012 CHOICE.
  • Nuclear Energy: What Everyone Needs to Know, by Charles D. Ferguson. Oxford, 2011. 222p ISBN 9780199759453, $74.00; ISBN 9780199759460 pbk, $16.95. Reviewed in March 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Oxford Handbook of Iranian History, ed. by Touraj Daryaee. Oxford, 2012. 414p ISBN 9780199732159, $150.00. Reviewed in September 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Oxford Handbook of the American Congress, ed. by Eric Schickler and Frances E. Lee. Oxford, 2011. 929p ISBN 0-19-955994-5, $175.00; ISBN 9780199559947, $175.00. Reviewed in January 2012 CHOICE.
  • A Plague of Prisons: The Epidemiology of Mass Incarceration in America, by Ernest Drucker. New Press, 2011. 226p ISBN 9781595584977, $26.95. Reviewed in March 2012 CHOICE.
  • Power, Inc.: The Epic Rivalry between Big Business and Government—and the Reckoning That Lies Ahead, by David Rothkopf. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012. 436p ISBN 9780374151287, $30.00. Reviewed in July 2012 CHOICE.
  • The Predictable Surprise: The Unraveling of the U.S. Retirement System, by Sylvester J Schieber. Oxford, 2012. 452p ISBN 0-19-989095-1, $34.95; ISBN 9780199890958, $34.95. Reviewed in October 2012 CHOICE.
  • Puritan Islam: The Geoexpansion of the Muslim World, by Barry A Vann. Prometheus Books, 2011. 228p ISBN 9781616145170, $26.00. Reviewed in April 2012 CHOICE.
  • So Rich, So Poor: Why It's So Hard to End Poverty in America, by Peter Edelman. New Press, 2012. 184p ISBN 9781595587855, $24.95. Reviewed in December 2012 CHOICE.
  • Thinking, Fast and Slow, by Daniel Kahneman. Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2011. 499p ISBN 9780374275631, $30.00. Reviewed in June 2012 CHOICE.
  • U.S. Health Policy and Politics: A Documentary History, by Kevin Hillstrom. CQ Press, 2012. 717p ISBN 1-60871-026-2, $185.00; ISBN 9781608710263, $185.00. Reviewed in March 2012 CHOICE.
  • Why Love Hurts: A Sociological Explanation, by Eva Illouz. Polity, 2012. 293p ISBN 9780745661520, $25.00. Reviewed in November 2012 CHOICE.
  • The World History of Animation, by Stephen Cavalier. California, 2011. 416p ISBN 0-520-26112-7, $39.95; ISBN 9780520261129, $39.95. Reviewed in June 2012 CHOICE.

Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles, 2012: Top 10 Websites



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 nearly 50 years and is the leading North American source for reviews of new scholarly books and electronic resources.


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Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL)

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