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New & Noteworthy

June 2019 List


4. The River and the Wall
By Ben Masters
Chronicles the ambitious trip of three Texans along the U.S.-Mexico border from El Paso to the Gulf of Mexico. Illustrates border issues through photography, firsthand experiences, environmental features of the Big Bend and the Rio Grande, and interviews with landowners, immigrants, and U.S. Representatives Will Hurd and Beto O'Rourke.
Texas A&M University Press, 2019. 188 pages.
917.64 M393R 2019


1. Charged: The New Movement to Transform American Prosecution and End Mass Incarceration
By Emily Bazelon
Argues that prosecutors have unchecked power that is a major contributing factor to mass incarceration in the United States. Presents the issue in a compelling manner through the experiences of two young people who were caught up in the criminal justice system. Describes how reform within district attorneys' offices and changes to state laws could address the overuse of incarceration.
Random House, 2019. 409 pages.
345.73 B347C 2019


2. Economics of Higher Education in the United States
By Thomas Adam and A. Burcu Bayram, editors
Analyzes the changing economic environment of higher education and reviews the historical roots of the student debt crisis. Claims today's focus on college tuition and student loans derived from a fundamental shift in the historically-defined purpose for a college education – what was once perceived as a public good, normally free to the user, developed into an environment in which higher education became a privilege, determined by financial wealth and market forces. Suggests prohibitive higher education costs could hamper states' efforts to create the skilled workforce key to states' economic growth and necessary to meet employers' needs.
Texas A&M University Press, 2019. 209 pages.
378.3 AD14E 2019


5. Summary of Conference Committee Report for House Bill 1: Appropriations for the 2020-21 Biennium
By Legislative Budget Board
Presents an overview of the conference committee report for HB 1, 86th Legislature. Details the total appropriations for the 2020–21 biennium by each method of finance for each article in the bill. Provides a comparison point between the different versions of the bill as it progressed through budget deliberations, enabling readers to identify the differences between chamber bills, or a specific chamber’s changes.
Legislative Budget Board, 2019. 77 pages.
Online at: http://www.lbb.state.tx.us/Documents/Appropriations_Bills/86/Conference_Bills/5872_S12_Bill_Summary.pdf
L1300.8 B859 202021SC


3. The Meanest Man in Congress: Jack Brooks and the Making of an American Century
By Timothy McNulty and Brendan McNulty
Profiles former Congressman and Texas Representative Jack Brooks, a Democrat who served in the 50th and 51st Texas legislatures and the U.S. House of Representatives from 1953 through 1995. Describes his life, from his upbringing in Beaumont and enlistment in World War II to his political career under ten U.S. presidents. Highlights Brooks' influence as a member of the Texas congressional delegation, his leadership roles on congressional committees and subcommittees, his insistence on government oversight, and his successes in passing bipartisan legislation. Describes his candid manner and demanding methods which earned him the (mostly complimentary) reputation of being the "Meanest Man in Congress." Details his roles in advancing LBJ's Great Society, the impeachment of Nixon, and investigating the Iran-Contra Affair.
NewSouth Books, 2019. 509 pages.
328.73092 M235M 2019