10 Nonfiction Books That Will Define the Conversation in 2015

With the advent of a new year, there’s a whole new fleet of books on deck that we’ll have the chance to read and argue about throughout 2015. Whether it’s history, biography, the endless parade of celebrity brand-extension books (we’ll learn what Aziz Ansari has found out about “modern romance” in the age of Tinder, and chuckle at Mindy Kaling’s Why Not Me? ), “diary” books by writers like Sarah Manguso and Heidi Julavits, Stacy Schiff’s long-in-the-works book about the Salem witch trials (October 2015), or memoir, there’s a book for every possible interest this year. Here’s are ten that people are sure to be talking about, on topics ranging from rock ‘n’ roll to American tragedies of the past and present.

ghettoside

Ghettoside: A True Story of Murder in America, by Jill Leovy (January 27)

Award-winning Los Angeles Times reporter Leovy started with one insane but true statistic: in 2007, for every white woman murdered in Los Angeles, one hundred black men were murdered — in a city where black people make up less than ten percent of the the population. From there, the murder of a young black man in Los Angeles becomes the impetus for a full-bodied portrait of the homicide epidemic among young black men in America today — and the larger factors, from the cops to the city to the gangs, that play a part in this tragedy.