3 Cool Books to Know This Week

A history of burglaries over the last 2,000 years, the memoir of a middle-aged guy trying to reinvent himself as a techie and an L.A.-set thriller top the week.
Courtesy of FSG Originals

Among the cool books debuting the first week in April are a history of burglaries that every screenwriter should want in their library, a coming-of-age thriller set in Los Angeles and a hilarious fish-out-of-water tech memoir.

Here are three cool books publishing this week:

A Burglar's Guide to the City by Geoff Manaugh (FSG originals)

Every screenwriter who has ever written about a heist (or dreamed of writing about a heist) should have this book in their library. Manaugh surveys two millennia of history for this wildly entertaining guide to robbery. From home invasions in ancient Rome to high-rises in modern New York, the tome explains how burglaries happened, where the gaps are in buildings and how museums are vulnerable. The author tells all this with entertaining tales of burglaries through the ages.

Dodgers by Bill Beverly (Crown)

This L.A.-set novel follows East, a teenage gang member, and some teen boys who are sent by his uncle to kill a witness hiding in Wisconsin. East has never left Los Angeles, and the journey is like traveling to a foreign country for him. The early reviews have been raves — one described it as “equal parts coming-of-age tale à la Salinger’s The Catcher in the Rye and travelogue à la Kerouac.” (I would add Richard Price.) High praise, indeed.

Disrupted: My Misadventure in the Start-Up Bubble by Dan Lyons (Hachette)

Lyons was a journalist at Newsweek until he got laid off, so at 52 he took a job with tech startup HubSpot, a marketing firm (i.e. spammers), in 2013. The resulting culture clash has produced a hilarious memoir (for his co-workers think lax bros meet Scientology — one executive brought a teddy bear to meetings) mixed with trenchant analysis about what’s wrong with America’s start-up culture. The book made HubSpot executives so nervous they tried to steal a copy of the manuscript to learn what was in Lyons' tale. If you don’t believe Silicon Valley has a ring of truth to it (or perhaps you don’t think it's outrageous enough), pick up Disrupted.  

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