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Year 2005 Top Nonfiction Picks

Woman in the Mirror by Richard Avedon: An unparalleled portrait of women brings together 125 tritone photographs, taken over a tumultuous half century of changing social institutions and values, cultural ideals, popular styles, and high fashion, accompanied by an incisive essay on the life and work of the great photographer.

I'm Not the New Me by Wendy McClure: A humorous but poignant chronicle of the American weight-loss culture draws on the author's online sites Pound and Candyboots to describe her battle with self-esteem and weight, from dealing with a family legacy of fat and drastic surgery, developing self-confidence, to struggling to understand oneself both after the weight loss and if you gain it back.

Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress by Susan Jane Gilman: A collection of true stories by everyday women follows such remembrances as coming of age as an unfashionable white girl in an all-Puerto Rican neighborhood, experiencing embarrassment in front of a rock star, and receiving horrible mistreatment by a "feminist" boss.

Lipstick Jihad by Azeden Moaveni. A memoir of growing up Iranian in America and American in Iran.

Female Chauvinist Pigs: Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture by Ariel Levy: A contributing editor at New York magazine examines how segments of the nation's female population are promoting chauvinism by behaving in sexually compromising ways, citing such examples as spring-break breast-baring and an increased acceptance of pornography, in an account that evaluates how women may be contributing to misogynistic and stereotyped belief systems.

Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking by Malcolm Gladwell: Explores the process by which people make decisions, explaining how the difference between good and bad decision making is directly related to the details on which people focus, and offers advice on how to improve decision making skills.

The Tender Bar by J.R. Moehringer: A vivid memoir of growing up and coming of age with a single mother describes how the author received valuable life lessons and friendship at the neighborhood bar, an old-time New York saloon populated by a colorful assortment of characters who provided him with a kind of fatherhood by committee.

1776 by David McCullough: Draws on personal correspondence and period diaries to present a history of the American Revolution that ranges from the siege of Boston, to the American defeat at Brooklyn and retreat across New Jersey, to the American victory at Trenton.

The Age of Anxiety: McCarthyism To Terrorism by Haynes Johnson: A chronicle of the 1950s anti-Communist crusade by senator Joseph McCarthy details numerous careers and lives that were destroyed by the campaign; cites the contributions of such figures as president Eisenhower, broadcaster Edward R. Morrow, and lawyer Joseph Welch; and reveals how beliefs originating from the movement are relevant to today's world.