NPR

In Amazon's Shadow, An America Divided In Search Of 'Fulfillment'

ProPublica's Alec MacGillis has written an economic history of the country, shaped by stories of people living and working in Amazon's shadow as their home cities and states transform around them.
Fulfillment: Winning and Losing in One-Click America, by Alec MacGillis Source: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

America has been sorted. There are "winner-take-all" places and "left-behind" places — and the two are increasingly isolated, struggling to comprehend the divide.

This is the story that unfolds in Alec MacGillis' Fulfillment: Winning and Losing in One-Click America. Ostensibly about Amazon, the book is instead an economic history of the country, shaped by an intimate introduction to people living and working in Amazon's shadow as their home cities and states transform around them.

That shadow of Amazon forms slowly. MacGillis,devotes much of his writing to intricate portraits: a forklift driver and a salvaged-brick seller from Baltimore, a lawyer-turned-artist and a gospel-choir leader from Seattle, a young politician and a truck driver from Ohio. These personal stories are sweeping and in-depth, and not all connect directly to Amazon. But most bring to light some facet of the company or socioeconomic forces shaping the communities affected by it.

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