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It's spring and soon will be summer. Five new and forthcoming books are already on our reading list. Let us know what's on yours.

1. Big Business: A Love Letter to an American Anti-Hero, by Tyler Cowen (out today)

  • Cowen's productivity astonishes, starting with his must-read blog Marginal Revolution. An economics professor at George Mason, Cowen again goes against the grain with a spirited defense of big business.

2. The Adventures of Alexander von Humboldt, by Andrea Wulf (out April 2)

  • Wulf follows up her gorgeous The Invention of Nature, a page-turner on Humboldt and the conceptual invention of a living Earth, with a graphic work on the 19th century explorer's life.

3. Upheaval: Turning Points for Nations in Crisis, by Jared Diamond (out May 7)

  • At a time of intense anxiety over our multiple simultaneous crises, Diamond — the Pulitzer-winning geographer-historian — documents how societies through time have overcome theirs, and then assesses our current predicaments.

4. Dignity: Seeking Respect in Backrow America, by Chris Arnade (out June 4)

  • Several years ago, Arnade quit his job on Wall Street to wander U.S. backwaters — especially McDonald's — and deliver his findings and photos on his must-read Twitter feed. Now, he delivers his work at book-length.

5. The Technology Trap: Capital, Labor, and Power in the Age of Automation, by Carl Frey (out June 18)

  • In 2013, Frey and Oxford collaborator Michael Osborne created automation studies as we know them today with a paper asserting that 47% of U.S. jobs are vulnerable to robots. Now, he argues that — if the new age of automation turns out as "well" as prior tech cycles, as optimists predict — we should be truly worried.

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Go deeper

Axios-Ipsos poll: Trust in federal coronavirus response surges

Data: Axios/Ipsos survey; Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

Trust surged in the federal government since President Biden's inauguration when it comes to COVID-19 — but that's almost entirely because of Democrats gaining confidence, according to the latest installment of the Axios/Ipsos Coronavirus Index.

The big picture: Americans reported the biggest improvement in their mental and emotional health since our survey began last March, and the highest trust levels since April about the federal government providing them accurate virus information and looking out for their best interests.

7 hours ago - Politics & Policy

McConnell drops filibuster demand, paving way for power-sharing deal

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (R) and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attend a joint session of Congress. Photo: Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has abandoned his demand that Democrats state, in writing, that they would not abandon the legislative filibuster.

Between the lines: McConnell was never going to agree to a 50-50 power sharing deal without putting up a fight over keeping the 60-vote threshold. But the minority leader ultimately caved after it became clear that delaying the organizing resolution was no longer feasible.

8 hours ago - Technology

Scoop: Google won't donate to members of Congress who voted against election results

Sen. Ted Cruz led the group of Republicans who opposed certifying the results. Photo: Stefani Reynolds/Pool/AFP via Getty Images

Google will not make contributions from its political action committee this cycle to any member of Congress who voted against certifying the results of the presidential election, following the deadly Capitol riot.

Why it matters: Several major businesses paused or pulled political donations following the events of Jan. 6, when pro-Trump rioters, riled up by former President Trump, stormed the Capitol on the day it was to certify the election results.