Ep. 250 A Litany of Abuses with Ali Winston and Darwin BondGraham

Today we’re joined by two award-winning journalists from the field of criminal justice and police misconduct. Ali Winston and Darwin BondGraham have coauthored the book The Riders Come Out at Night: Brutality, Corruption, and Cover-Up in Oakland, an exposé following many years of investigation of The Oakland Police Department. We get into why they wanted to write about the OPD in the first place, and ask whether the police can be reformed. We also discuss how the authors feel their own identities played into their writing of the book.

The Stacks Book Club selection for January is The Meaning of Mariah Carey by Mariah Carey with Michaela Angela Davis. We will discuss the book on January 25th with Chelsea Devantez.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

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Ep. 240 Hold the Powers that Be Accountable with Jemele Hill

Renowned sports journalist Jemele Hill joins the show to discuss her powerful new book Uphill: A Memoir. We talk about how she organized and thought about telling her story, how she cultivated he sources as a journalist. Jemele also reveals how she navigates the challenging relationship between her own identity as a Black woman and the world of sports.

The Stacks Book Club selection for November is Prison by Any Other Name: The Harmful Consequences of Popular Reforms by Maya Schenwar and Victoria Law. We will discuss the book on November 30th with Mariame Kaba.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

credit: Chris Schmitt

Connect with Jemele: Instagram | Twitter
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To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. If you prefer to support the show with a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

The Stacks Book Club – November 2022

Our Stacks Book Club selection for November is Prison by Any Other Name: The Harmful Consequences of Popular Reforms, co-authored by journalists Maya Schenwar and Victoria Law, with a foreword by author and civil rights lawyer Michelle Alexander. The book is a searing exposé of the state-sanctioned violence and social control engineered by so-called alternative solutions to incarceration, from surveillance and house arrest to mandated psyche and drug treatments. It peels away the deceptively kind narrative around reform which actually obscures an oppressive and self-perpetuating status quo in crime and punishment. Prison By Any Other Name argues for real change and seeks to inspire a more humane and empowered approach to justice.

We will discuss Prison By Any Other Name by Maya Schenwar and Victoria Law on Wednesday, November 30th. You can find out who our guest will be by listening to the podcast on November 2nd. If you’d like even more discussion around the book, consider joining The Stacks Pack on Patreon and participating in The Stacks’ monthly virtual book club.

Order your copy of our November book on Bookshop.org and Amazon, or listen to the audiobook through Libro.FM.


To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page (https://www.patreon.com/thestacks). We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of The Stacks.

The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed. For more information click here.

Ep. 232 What Should the Rules Be with Andrea Elliott

Andrea Elliott joins us to discuss her investigative reporting career and her Pulitzer Prize winning book Invisible Child: Poverty, Survival & Hope in an American City. We go over how this remarkable story came to be, and how it shifted from what Andrea first anticipated. We also get into what can and should change about the ethics of journalism, and the challenge of protecting children from themselves in the media.

The Stacks Book Club selection for September is The Trees by Percival Everett. We will discuss the book on September 28th with Lisa Lucas.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

Connect with Andrea: Instagram | Twitter | Website
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To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. If you prefer to support the show with a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Ep. 220 Spread Love It’s the Brooklyn Way with Justin Tinsley

Today we’re joined by Justin Tinsley, senior culture writer at ESPN’s Andscape and author of the new book It Was All a Dream: Biggie and the World That Made Him. We talk about the culture, legends, women, and controversies that shaped The Notorious B.I.G.’s life, and place his story into a greater context. Justin also shares how he worked on multiple projects while writing this book, and what he thinks comes next.

The Stacks Book Club selection for June is White Negroes: When Cornrows Were in Vogue … and Other Thoughts on Cultural Appropriation by Lauren Michele Jackson. We will discuss the book on June 29th with David Dennis Jr.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes. You can also find everything we talked about on Amazon.

Connect with Justin: Instagram | Twitter | Website
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To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. If you prefer to support the show with a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Ep. 164 Breaking a Story with Patrick Radden Keefe

Our guest today is staff writer at The New Yorker, and award winning author Patrick Radden Keefe. We talk about his newest book Empire of Pain: The Secret History of the Sackler Dynasty, and the ways the opioid crisis was directly connected to their drug OxyContin. We also discuss Patrick’s thinking around breaking a story, writing after the success of his bestselling book Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland, and his foray into podcasting with his show Wind of Change.

The Stacks Book Club selection for May is Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy . We will discuss the book with Jenny Lee on Wednesday May 26th.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes. You can also find everything we talked about on Amazon.

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Connect with Patrick: Twitter | Instagram | Website | Wind of Change

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To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. If you prefer to support the show with a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Ep. 131 The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio — The Stacks Book Club (Lupita Aquino)

Today for The Stacks Book Club we are discussing The Undocumented Americans by Karla Cornejo Villavicencio. Our guest is the reader behind the bookish Instagram account Lupita Reads, Lupita Aquino. Our conversation looks at the ways undocumented people have been treated as a monolith, the concept of “objective journalism”, and how this book has created a space for more undocumented folks to feel seen and heard.
There are no spoilers in this episode.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

Connect with Lupita: Instagram | Twitter
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To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of this show. If you prefer to do a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of this show. If you prefer to do a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Ep. 86 Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat — The Stacks Book Club (Hugh Garvey)

We’re taking on our first ever cookbook as part of The Stacks Book Club with the help of food writer and executive editor at Sunset Magazine, Hugh Garvey. As we gear up for the holiday season we are diving into Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat by Samin Nosrat, and breaking down the key elements of cooking. We talk about freeing ourselves from recipes, cooking anxiety, and the communal act of sharing a meal. Hugh then challenges Traci to use what she’s learned to build a salad. Its a delicious episode!
There are no spoilers in this episode.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

Connect with Hugh: Instagram | Sunset Magazine
Connect with The Stacks: Instagram | Twitter | Shop | Patreon | Goodreads | Subscribe

To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of this show. If you prefer to do a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Ep. 85 Recipes Have a Happy Ending with Hugh Garvey

Today we are joined by executive editor of Sunset Magazine, Hugh Garvey. Hugh talks with us about his start in journalism, food writing, the politics of eating, and how he fell in love with recipes for their intimacy and happy endings.

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Everything we talk about on today’s episode can be found below in the show notes and on Bookshop.org and Amazon.

Books

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Everything Else

Connect with Hugh: Instagram | Sunset Magazine
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To support The Stacks and find out more from this week’s sponsors, click here.

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of this show. If you prefer to do a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.


The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. This in no way effects opinions on books and products reviewed here. For more information click here.

Bachelor Nation: Inside the World of America’s Favorite Guilty Pleasure by Amy Kaufman

Confession time, I love The Bachelor franchise. I know its corny and low brow and whatever else you want to say, but I also know that it is so entertaining, and it brings me so much joy. So obviously when I was listening to my favorite Bachelor podcast, Bachelor Party, and Amy Kaufman was on and said she had a book about the show, Bachelor Nation, I knew I had to read it.

More about Bachelor Nation

Los Angeles Times journalist Amy Kaufman is a proud member of Bachelor Nation and has a long history with the franchise—ABC even banned her from attending show events after her coverage of the program got a little too real for its liking. She has interviewed dozens of producers, contestants, and celebrity fans to give readers never-before-told details of the show’s inner workings: what it’s like to be trapped in the mansion “bubble”; dark, juicy tales of producer manipulation; and revelations about the alcohol-fueled debauchery that occurs long before the Fantasy Suite. 

Kaufman also explores what our fascination means, culturally: what the show says about the way we view so-called ideal suitors; our subconscious yearning for fairy-tale romance; and how this enduring television show has shaped society’s feelings about love, marriage, and feminism by appealing to a marriage plot that’s as old as the best of Jane Austen.


Bachelor Nation is a book for people who like and/or watch (since I know these things can be different, hate watchers, I see you) The Bachelor franchise. If you don’t, don’t waste your time. The book has some interesting moments but goes on way long (could have been 50 pages shorter). The best thing is that Kaufman gets access to producers and contestants who are at least semi-revealing in their insights into the show. There is no ground breaking scoop revealed. It is a fun and trashy read, which feels right, given the source material.

I listened to this book on audio, and Kaufman narrates it. She is super animated and very casual in tone. It is almost like talking with a gal pal, who is a bit of a valley girl. The writing is nothing special, but she gets her points across. She clearly is passionate about her topic and her excitement makes the audiobook fun to listen to.

The middle of Bachelor Nation is by far the best, and has the most insight into the show. When she discusses how the contestant’s get their clothing, or how much the leads are paid, or the details of their contracts, I was totally into it. I was less interested in the introduction and ending of the book, which was mostly Kaufman telling us what she loves about the show, and how she came to it, and why. There are also little sections where famous people say why they love the show, which I didn’t care much for either.

Bachelor Nation is exactly what you think it is. If you love the show and the contestants then you should check it out, but if you hate watch the show or don’t watch at all, I think you could steer clear. And yes, just in case you were wondering, I am looking forward to Colton’s season, even though I think he is a terrible and boring pick for The Bachelor.

  • Audiobook: 7 hours and 43 minutes
  • Publisher: Penguin Audio
  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton (March 6, 2018)
  • 3/5 stars
  • Buy on Bachelor Nation Amazon

To contribute to The Stacks, join The Stacks Pack, and get exclusive perks, check out our Patreon page. We are beyond grateful for anything you’re able to give to support the production of this show. If you prefer to do a one time contribution go to paypal.me/thestackspod.

The Stacks participates in affiliate programs. We receive a small commission when products are purchased through links on this website, and this comes at no cost to you. Shopping through these links helps support the show, but does not effect my opinions on books and products. For more information click here.