Sneak Peek: On Immunity: An Inoculation


Welcome to the latest installment of Sneak Peek, an occasional series in which we spotlight a book well in advance of publication. This time we are highlighting On Immunity: An Inoculation by Eula Biss, who won the National Book Critics Circle Award in 2010 for Notes from No Man’s Land: American Essays.


New York City is experiencing its largest outbreak of measles in nearly two decades. The World Health Organization recently declared an international public health emergency in the face of the spread of polio. Immunization rates have been falling since the 1990s and continue to decrease every year.


It seems that there’s a new headline every month about vaccinations—or lack thereof—and their impact on global health. In On Immunity: An Inoculation, the brilliant new book coming out on September 30, award-winning writer Eula Biss dives into the metaphors and myths surrounding immunizations as she navigates the uncertainty that accompanies new motherhood. Along the way she sidesteps into conversations with other mothers, as well as meditations on Voltaire, Sontag, and vampires (yes, vampires!). It’s a rational, broad-in-scope book that should be required reading.


Tomorrow we’ll pack our bags and head to New York City for BookExpo America (BEA), the publishing industry’s largest tradeshow, where publishers from around the country trot out their big name authors and launch their biggest titles of the fall. The crown jewel event of BEA is the Editors Buzz panel, where a small group of editors present books that have been selected by a committee that hopes to highlight books with the most potential to break out. This year we are thrilled to report that our very own Jeffrey Shotts has been chosen to present Eula’s book to the hundreds of media and publishing insiders who will attend the panel. You’re going to be hearing a lot more about On Immunity in the coming months; why not get a jumpstart now? Click here to read an excerpt and mark your calendar for a trip to the local bookstore on September 30.