Top 10 New Distro Titles of 2011 (So Far!)

Well hello there, folks! Hopefully by now you’ve all perused our list of the new AK Press titles of the past six months and started updating your reading lists. We like to keep you on your toes, so here’s another fun list for you: the top 10 bestselling new DISTRO titles in the first half of 2011. These are titles that have been released this year by other independent publishers, that we carry in our distribution catalog—and like everything else we carry, they are available to both individuals and wholesale customers. So whichever you are, if you haven’t picked them up yet, consider this your friendly reminder…

Fair Game: A Strategy Guide for Racial Justice Communications in the Obama Era
Praxis Media Productions
Praxis Project

A workbook-style guide from the good folks at The Praxis Project (some of the same folks who were involved in producing the AK Press book Talking the Walk)! This was debuted at the US Social Forum last year, and now updated and available for the first time to the general public, this guide is designed to help racial justice advocates navigate new political waters, explore proven strategies, and to consider what we must do over the long term to regain lost ground.

The Listener: Memory, Lies, Art, Power
David Lester
Arbeiter Ring Publishing
You followers of our blog already know that this one has been getting reviewed all over the place—and that we think it is good! You will too! It’s a graphic novel by David Lester (Mecca Normal guitarist and bestselling—for us!—author of The Gruesome Acts of Capitalism). A compelling tale of art, power, and murder (!) weaving weighty historical events together with modern-day art and life, all presented through eye-catching black-and-white drawings.

Art Gangs: Protest and Counterculture in New York City
Alan W. Moore
An enlightening new contribution to the study of art history from a radical view. From the Art Workers Coalition through Art & Language, Colab and Group Material in the 1980s, in Soho and the Lower East Side, the collectives described in this book built the postmodern art world. This is the essential background story of today’s politicized international art world.

Post-Car Adventuring: The San Francisco Bay Area
Justin Eichenlaub & Kelly Gregory
Post-Car Press
This one got a nice write-up in the East Bay Express over the winter, and found its way onto many a bookstore counter in Oakland, Berkeley, and San Francisco. If you local bike enthusiasts haven’t gotten a copy yet, please do! But we encourage folks outside the area to pick it up, too—it’s tourist-friendly, and you’ll find it a unique approach to a travel guide for the more adventurous Bay Area visitor.

The Revolution Starts at Home
Ching-In Chen, Jai Dulani, & Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha (eds)
South End Press
Nearly one in three women in the United States will experience intimate violence in her lifetime. And in order to effectively resist violence out there—in the prison system, on militarized borders, or other clear encounters with “the system”—we in activist communities must challenge how it is reproduced right where we live and work. Expanded from the popular zine by the same name, this essential book offers alternatives for survivor safety while building a revolution where no one is left behind. Authors and contributors are on tour now—keep an eye out, but definitely check out the book in the meantime!

Work: Capitalism. Economics. Resistance.
From the folks who brought us such recent classics as Days of War, Nights of Love, Recipes for Disaster, and Expect Resistance comes a new intervention into the world of work, and a larger analysis of capitalism: what it is, how it works, and how we might dismantle it. Not just an attempt to describe reality but also a tool with which to change it!

What Lies Beneath The Clock Tower: Being An Adventure Of Your Own Choosing
Margaret Killjoy
Combustion Books
From a new publisher of “dangerous fiction,” Combustion Books, comes a choose-your-own adventure book for grown-ups! This one is chock full of political struggle, drunkenness, gnomes, goblins, and clever steampunk sensibilities. Plus it comes highly recommended by Alan Moore (author of Watchmen) as well as BoingBoing, so you don’t even have to take our word for it!

Grammar Matters: The Social Significance of How We Use Language
Jila Ghomeshi
Arbeiter Ring Publishing
It is hard to find someone who doesn’t have a pet peeve about language. Self-appointed language police worry that new forms of popular media are contributing to sloppiness, imprecision, and a general disregard for the rules of grammar and speech. This book addresses the politics of language: what insistence on “proper” use of language reveals about power, authority, and various social prejudices.

The ABCs of Anarchy
Brian Heagney
An anarchist book suitable for children of all ages (as long as they like to color)! Every page includes questions relevant for children or adults. Whether you want to go through the alphabet with a little one, or have a thoughtful engaging discussion about life with your mother, this book is for you! Seriously, it’s great… check it out, you won’t be sorry.

How to Rock and Roll: A City Rider’s Repair Manual
Sam Tracy
Black Kettle Graphics
Here’s one from the vault (luckily, bike repair hasn’t changed too much over the years)! This book was believed to be out of print—but now, for a short time only, we have it back in stock. By the author of Bicycle! and Roadside Bicycle Repair! We’re down to our last 30 copies, so get yours now or forever wonder how great this book could have been.