Maybe you encountered Jeff Sharlet in last year's Netflix documentary series, "The Family," based on his book about a Christian group's stronghold on American politics. He has a way of illuminating such phenomenons and the lives of others, both high-profile and hiding in the shadows. The latter are the subjects of his latest book. "This Brilliant Darkness" is about his encounters with strangers — night shift workers, teen addicts, an actor whose career was cut short by a bullet and a woman wandering the streets with a houseplant. — Seth Boster, The Gazette

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