Magnetic city A walking companion to New York

Justin Davidson, 1966-

Book - 2017

"For nearly a decade, Pulitzer prize-winning critic Justin Davidson has explained New York, the city, to his readers at New York, the magazine. He has visited new and preserved buildings, explored neighborhoods in mid-transformation; interviewed architects, developers, and urban thinkers; and tracked the city's constant change. Now, he distills those experiences into Magnetic City, an ambler's guide to New York--the city around us, the one that's lost, and the one that's... still to come. Essayistic in form, historical in scope, and filled with references to literature, music, art, and architecture, Magnetic City offers first-time visitors and lifelong residents a new way to see New York"--

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Subjects
Genres
Guidebooks
Published
New York : Spiegel & Grau [2017]
Language
English
Item Description
"A Spiegel & Grau trade paperback original"--Title page verso.
Includes index.
Physical Description
xiv, 236 pages : illustrations, maps ; 24 cm
ISBN
9780553394702
0553394703
Main Author
Justin Davidson, 1966- (author)
  • Walk I: City of Money (Financial District)
  • Interlude I: City of Streets
  • Walk II: Liquid City (Seaport, Governors Island, & Brooklyn Waterfront)
  • Walk III: The City Reborn (World Trade Center)
  • Interlude II: City of Towers
  • Walk IV: The City Transformed (West Chelsea & the High Line)
  • Walk V: City of Ideals (42nd Street from Bryant Park to the UN)
  • Interlude III: City of Glass
  • Walk VI: City of Nostalgia (The Upper West Side)
  • Interlude IV: City of Apartments
  • Walk VII: City of Dreams (Sugar Hill & South Bronx)
  • Finale: City of Memory.
Review by Booklist Reviews

*Starred Review* New York is a city of constant change. That has been especially so in the years following 9/11 when New York repeatedly reinvented itself. A good tour guide (particularly if he or she is of a certain age) on the seemingly ubiquitous double-decker buses can spend virtually the whole day talking about what in the city is new, what wasn't there at all before that terrible day. (That, of course, is after talking about the Empire State Building, the Woolworth Building, Grand Central Station, and so on.) Davidson, the Pulitzer Prize–winning architecture critic for New York magazine, is a resident, student, and passionate lover of New York, and he has done right by a subject that, fittingly, has been essayed many times before. He combines a keen intelligence, experience, observational skills, expertise (especially but not solely architectural), and an elegant writing style to make this beautifully produced book indispensable. The sections on the 9/11 museum, on Calatrava's dovelike Oculus, on the unique High Line, and on the Jewish Upper West Side are singularly informative, as are Davidson's less rapturous examinations of today's skyscrapers. Curiously, the walking tours, though they are very much worth pursuing, are among the book's lesser features. The story of New York, its feel and history, particularly in the past few years, is what makes this book memorable. It will soon, of course, be superseded (hopefully by a second edition). Copyright 2017 Booklist Reviews.

Review by Publisher Summary 1

A Pulitzer prize-winning critic for New York Magazine describes the historical, cultural, architectural, and literary importance of various neighborhoods and places in New York and presents seven walking tours of different parts of the city.

Review by Publisher Summary 2

"For nearly a decade, Pulitzer prize-winning critic Justin Davidson has explained New York, the city, to his readers at New York, the magazine. He has visited new and preserved buildings, explored neighborhoods in mid-transformation; interviewed architects, developers, and urban thinkers; and tracked the city's constant change. Now, he distills those experiences into Magnetic City, an ambler's guide to New York--the city around us, the one that's lost, and the one that's still to come. Essayistic in form, historical in scope, and filled with references to literature, music, art, and architecture, Magnetic City offers first-time visitors and lifelong residents a new way to see New York"--

Review by Publisher Summary 3

The Pulitzer prize-winning architecture critic for New York magazine provides five essays on the historical, cultural, architectural, literary importance of various neighborhoods and places in New York, and includes seven tours through Manhattan, Brooklyn and the Bronx. Original.

Review by Publisher Summary 4

From New York magazine’s architecture critic, a walking and reading guide to New York City—a historical, cultural, architectural, and personal approach to seven neighborhoods throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, including six essays that help us understand the evolution of the city For nearly a decade, Pulitzer Prize–winning critic Justin Davidson has explained the ever-changing city of New York to his readers at New York magazine, introducing new buildings, interviewing architects, tracking the way the transforming urban landscape shapes who New Yorkers are. Now, his extensive, inspiring knowledge will be available to a wide audience. An insider’s guide to the architecture and planning of New York that includes maps, photographs, and original insights from the men and women who built the city and lived in it—its designers, visionaries, artists, writers—Magnetic City offers first-time visitors and lifelong residents a new way to see New York.Includes walking tours throughout Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx • the Financial District • the World Trade Center  • the Seaport and the Brooklyn waterfront • Chelsea and the High Line • 42nd Street • the Upper West Side • the South Bronx and Sugar HillPraise for Magnetic City“An intimate, seductive guidebook.”—The New York Times“An enthralling new book makes clear that I’m not alone in my home-town infatuation . . . lends nuance, texture and historical perspective to my impression that New York City has never been so appealing or life-affirming as it is today.”—New York Post“[Davidson] combines a keen intelligence, experience, observational skills, expertise (especially but not solely architectural), and an elegant writing style to make this beautifully produced book indispensable.”—Booklist (starred review)“A street-level celebration of New York City in all ‘its perpetual complexity and contradiction’ . . . a worthy companion to Alfred Kazin’s A Walker in the City and the American Institute of Architects guides to the architecture of New York as well as a treat for fans of the metropolis.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)“Justin Davidson does more than direct our feet to New York’s hidden monuments. He explains the structure of the city with a clarity that would be bracing even for a Gotham habitué, but more than that, he finds the meaning in every building and byway.”—Andrew Solomon, National Book Award-winning author of Far from the Tree“Mr. Davidson’s exceptional knowledge of our beloved city is inspiring. Magnetic City is now my official chaperone.”—Patti LuPone“Justin Davidson has a mind alive to every signal, and his brilliant prose style transmits that electricity in black-and-white type. He is thus born to the task of capturing the chaotic splendor of New York City on the page.”—Alex Ross, author of Listen to This“Justin Davidson’s beautiful tours of New York City invoke and redouble our love of the metropolis.”—Jerry Saltz, senior art critic, New York