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Book Reviews 06/2014

Stephen King's 'Mr. Mercedes': book review
“Mr. Mercedes,” Stephen King's new book, isn't that horrific. It's more of a crime thriller, one that pointedly portrays the plight of the unemployed while putting on the page some of the author's most redeeming characters yet. Does that make “Mr ...

Review: 'City of Heavenly Fire'
That is not to say that Heavenly Fire is not a good book. Clare's writing is punchy, and she knows her world inside out. The characters speak with believable voices, and the dialogue is enough to make you laugh out loud more than once. The plot rattles ...

Book review: 'The Extraordinary Life of Rebecca West' b y Lorna Gibb
The novelist Andrea Barrett, in her otherwise thoughtful introduction to the New York Review of Books edition of West's best novel, “The Fountain Overflows,” writes that “West seems to have possessed the full complement of human weaknesses — vanity, ...

Sunday Burgs book review
Reviewed by Jennifer Poff Cooper of Christiansburg, a graduate of the Hollins University M.A.L.S. program. Ten percent happier doesn't seem like a lot – as in, is it worth reading 237 pages to be only one-tenth happier? But Dan Harris makes a ...

Book Review Stephen King's novel 'Mr. Mercedes' never accelerates
In "Christine" (1983), a Plymouth Fury becomes a jealous and murderous lover. In the terrific "From a Buick 8" (2002), something resembling a Roadmaster tempts highway patrol officers — and readers — to take a one-way journey into King's sprawling ...

The Vacationers is perfect summer reading, despite itself
As students, “summer reading” usually means heavy classics, the sort of things that will keep your mind from going soft between school years. As adults, vacation time shrivels from three months to 10 days a year, and for those precious few days, book ...

Stephen King's Mr. Mercedes repeatedly subverts expectations
The constant changes keep the book from building a consistent flow—just when he primes readers to expect something thrillingly awful, he veers off on a new course—but they also invite exciting, unpredictable developments. But even when he's being ...

BOOK REVIEW: 'Scalia: A Court of One'
Justice Antonin Scalia has been one of the most important and influential justices of the Supreme Court. Since arriving at the court in 1986, his advocacy of an approach to interpreting the Constitution rooted in its text, history and “original meaning ...

My Real Children
From that point on, the book is startlingly like a smooth-flowing, pared-down version of Kate Atkinson's recent Life After Life, in which a woman named Ursula lives through the same life over and over, each time avoiding her previous fate, and ...

BOOK REVIEW: 'The Explorers': The Seven Traits of Successful Explorers ...
BOOK REVIEW: 'The Explorers': The Seven Traits of Successful Explorers ...

'4 Funerals and a Wedding': A Book Review
Towards the end of this heart breaking and heartening book the author, Jill Smolowe, writes that one of her friends says she has "a Ph.D. in death and dying." While Smolowe demurs, I agree with her friend. Just because you may figuratively have a ...

Tryouts for the comic book review team are now open!
An over-abundance of available comic books (and rumors of even more this fall) means that reviewers will have to select multiple titles they wish to review, otherwise we would end up with a writing staff of over 25 and that's just ridiculous. Pick out ...

Book Review: 'The Norm Chronicles' by Michael Blastland and David Spiegelhalter
If you want to know how many children drown every year, or the relative death rate of commercial fishermen versus miners, or the chance that London will experience four murders in a single day, this book has got you covered. And the authors take care ...

Book review | Terry Hayes' latest, 'I Am Pilgrim,' defines edge-of-your-seat ...
Book review | Terry Hayes' latest, 'I Am Pilgrim,' defines edge-of-your-seat ...

Book review: New series kicks off with Halloween adventure
The first book begins on Halloween, but it is more a tale of adventure and magic than horror and gore. There comes a time in every kid's life when Halloween becomes more than just dressing up and trick-or-treating. Instead, the holiday becomes a time ...

Jony Ive, book review: Some genesis, but few revelations
The point for the unwary reader is that it suggests this book will be an intimate portrait of Apple's most significant product designer. The disappointing reality is that it's not. Apple did not assist Kahney with interviews for this book, although he ...

Book review
Book review. This book cover image released by Rowman & Littlefield shows "Counting Down Bruce Springsteen: His 100 Finest Songs," by Jim Beviglia. (AP Photo/Rowman & Littlefield). Book review. Francisco Seco ...

Book Review: Forbes Leads The New Renaissance In Monetary Understanding
Fortunately for all of us, Forbes and co-author Elizabeth Ames have expanded their thoughts in a new book, Money: How the Destruction of the Dollar Threatens the Global Economy—and What We Can Do About It. I think it will serve as a core work in the ...

Book Review: Bonds Are Not Forever: The Crisis Facing Fixed Income Investors
Bonds Are Not Forever: The Crisis Facing Fixed Income Investors explores the history of debt from ancient to modern times. It discusses the growth of derivatives, developments in risk management, inflation in the modern era, the political backdrop of ...

Book Review: 'The Director' and 'Night Heron'
Book Review: 'The Director' and 'Night Heron'. by Alan Cheuse. June 03, 2014 4:08 PM ET. Listen to the Story. All Things Considered. 2 min 41 sec. Playlist; Download. Alan Cheuse reviews two new spy novels: David Igantius' The Director and Adam ...

BOOK REVIEW: 'Rising Tides'
Edmund Burke, Winston Churchill, Roy Jenkins, Matthew Ridley: the houses of Parliament have long been among the United Kingdom's richest veins of political, economic and historical writings. “Rising Tides,” a new book by Liam Fox, member of Parliament, ...

Book Review: 'When Money Grew on Trees' by Greg Gordon
Mr. Gordon teaches history at Gonzaga University in eastern Washington state, and his book has lyrical descriptions of the great virgin stands of redwood and Douglas firs that were nearly destroyed by Hammond and other early timber barons. To make it ...

Book review: 'Euphoria' by Lily King
Around these main characters, King weaves in touches of historical context from the field of anthropology when Margaret Mead was producing best-selling books on her studies of young people in Samoa and New Guinea. In many ways, Mead's life is ...

'Midnight in Europe' by Alan Furst
The one surviving mirror shows up again and again in the other books. In “Mission to Paris,'' the actor Fredric Stahl passes by the offices of Jean Casson, the producer-hero of “Red Gold'' and “The World at Night,'' on his way to see his own producer ...

Book Review: "Knits that Breathe" by Julie Turjoman
She's working with the noted knitting publicist, Jocelyn Grayson, to market the book, and Jocelyn sent me a digital copy Monday evening. I was so blown away by the book, I had to review it just as soon as I got the photos from Julie. This book is that ...

BOOK REVIEW: 'Midnight's Descendants'
Empires seldom die quietly. It took centuries of anarchy and darkness before European civilization would recover from the collapse of the Roman Empire. The extended death throes of the Ottoman Empire, with savage turmoil in the Balkans and the Near and ...

Review: The 'Rape Joke' Poet Patricia Lockwood's New Book Is Great
After a big, glowing profile of Lockwood in The New York Times Magazine, The Toast wrote that her book had been given a sexist review by The New Yorker online. The Awl further observed that only men had been assigned to review it. In Adam Plunkett's ...

Book Review: 'The Big Fat Surprise' by Nina Teicholz
Yet Ms. Teicholz's book is a lacerating indictment of Big Public Health for repeatedly putting action and policy ahead of good evidence. It would all be comical if the result was not possibly the worst dietary advice in history. And once the advice had ...

Book Review: A sunny summer turns dark in Ogunquit
Her book's opening reveals few hints of events to come. Good-hearted Louise Bessire is owner and operator of a picturesque Ogunquit hostelry called Blueberry Bay Inn. She appears to have a great relationship with her 16-year-old daughter, Isobel, ...

Book review: 'Earth Calling' offers primer on climate science, with a ...
Book review: 'Earth Calling' offers primer on climate science, with a ...

Book Review: Space Hoax
Space Hoax, written by Paul Gillebaard, is the adventure filled sequel to his book Moon Hoax (read our review of that book here.) This space thriller begins right where Moon Hoax left off. Our hero, Peter Novak, living a certainly less than boring life ...

Book Review: 'A Scrap of Paper' by Isabel V. Hull
Many of these scholars, almost all of them liberals, have written books associating the laws of war—tellingly, also called "international humanitarian law"—with good and those policy makers who stretched or broke such laws with evil. Isabel Hull's "A ...

The People Factor by Van Moody Book Review
Using common experiences and biblical stories, Moody extracts the wisdom of "doing relationships right," making the book an easy read. Then he empowers you to access these principles in all areas of relationships: marriages, work, friendships, etc. by ...

BOOK REVIEW: Snowden's relevations: the backstory
Leaking secrets in the public interest requires not only a ready and courageous whistleblower. It also demands an able and courageous deliverer to carry the precious message to the world. This year's graduation week marks the one-year anniversary of ...

Book Review: List of Cannibals
Charlie Munger strongly recommends that investors "look at the cannibals", defined as companies that gobble up their own shares. I have found it difficult to find an up-to-date list of cannibals, so I decided to create one. I've picked it over (though ...

It's a Prefabulous World (book review)
Over a decade ago, when the idea of green modern prefabricated housing was still new, the dream was to make architect-designed prefabs affordable and accessible to everyone. It didn't happen; most people do not build their own houses but buy them from ...

'The Fault in Our Stars': Movie review
The same is true of the lovingly rendered movie version, in which Shailene Woodley and Ansel Elgort embody teenagers Hazel and Gus as beautifully as fans could hope for. Green's 2012 book dealt fearlessly with mortality; there was none of the standard ...

BOOK REVIEW: 'Jack of Spies'
Unfortunately, “Jack of Spies,” his latest mystery, does not live up to his formidable reputation for writing what became a grim and realistic report on world history. His new book tracks back to 1913 and the beginning of what was a terrible era, but ...

Book Review Podcast: 'The Invention of News'
In The New York Times Book Review, David Carr reviews Andrew Pettegree's “The Invention of News: How the World Came to Know About Itself.” Mr. Carr writes: In general, journalists are not the heroes of this book. They're often mere stenographers when ...

Book review: 'Dear Leader,' a look inside North Korea, by Jang Jin-sung
In the past 15 years, about 26,000 North Koreans have slipped across their country's semi-permeable border with China and found their way to South Korea. This flood of informants, most of whom were poor and living on the margins before they escaped ...

Book Review: Fifty Shrinks by Sebastian Zimmermann
This tantalizing book of photographs, depicting psychotherapists in their offices, emerged from the photographer-author's awareness of a paradox: He spent long hours interacting with many clients, yet he felt as if he worked in isolation. He composed ...

Book Review: 'The Good Spy' by Kai Bird
Last year, the historian Hugh Wilford published "America's Great Game," a joint biography of three of the CIA's early Arabists. They were impressive, these spies of the 1950s, with their deep knowledge of Middle Eastern languages and societies. They ...

Book Review: 'The Most Dangerous Book' by Kevin Birmingham
Joyce's first exposure to Homer's "Odyssey," in which the itinerant hero appears, came in the form of a children's book, Charles Lamb's 1808 "Adventures of Ulysses," which he read at the age of 11. Asked by a schoolteacher to write about a favorite ...

Book Review: 'The Critic in the Modern World' by James Ley
In 1936, the British literary critic F.R. Leavis published a scholarly work titled "Revaluation." As an admirer of T.S. Eliot, Leavis was anxious that a review of this closely argued study of English poetry from John Donne to John Keats should appear ...

Book Review: 'The Great and Holy War' by Philip Jenkins
The book's big claim about religion in the war (about one-third of the narrative) relies almost exclusively on statements not by princes, presidents or emperors but by bishops, pastors and religious activists. Clergy may have helped soldiers to think ...

Book Review: 'Sons of Wichita' by Daniel Schulman & 'Big Money' by Kenneth P ...
Book Review: 'Sons of Wichita' by Daniel Schulman & 'Big Money' by Kenneth P ...

Book Review: 'China's Second Continent' by Howard W. FrenchAfrica's New ...
Book Review: 'China's Second Continent' by Howard W. FrenchAfrica's New ...

Book review | Karen White's 'grit lit' delves into vicious cycle of mother ...
Book review | Karen White's 'grit lit' delves into vicious cycle of mother ...

Book Review: 'Stuff Matters' by Mark MiodownikSubstantial Achievements
A teacup, a concrete wall, some chocolate, a glass, some stainless steel—ordinary objects, familiar and ubiquitous. Now they have found their poet in Mark Miodownik, a scientist at the University of London who, in "Stuff Matters," gives a thrilling ...

Book Review: 'Spartan UP!' by Joe De Sena
9780544286177 How many times have we been told to get out of our comfort zones, stretch our experiences, and live life to the fullest? I know I've been told that more than a few times. A new book, Spartan UP! A Take-No-Prisoners Guide to Overcoming ...


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