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Book Reviews 02/2018

New York Times Book Review: Solving a Reign of Terror Against ...
New York Times Book Review: Solving a Reign of Terror Against ...

Prisons Tried to Ban this Book. Here's a Review.
Two-hundred years ago there ago was a 10-year-old Caucasian boy from New York City, Thomas D. Rice, whose starry-eyed dream was to get curtain calls on Broadway as an actor. Within 20 years he'd outgrown Broadway and regularly filled the concert halls ...

Book review: 'Mothers of Sparta: a Memoir in Pieces'
This cover image released by Flatiron Books shows "Mothers of Sparta: A Memoir in Pieces," by Dawn Davies. (Flatiron Books via AP). NOTEWORTY. “Mothers of Sparta: a Memoir in Pieces”. Dawn Davies. Flatiron Books, 2018. What's in a life? Forget ...

The Last 100 Days: FDR at War and at Peace | Book Review
The final months of Roosevelt's life and administration are among the most significant in securing both his legacy and peace after World War II. From the last Christmas at his beloved Hyde Park to Easter in Warm Springs, Georgia, the book follows ...

Book Review: James Rosen's Endlessly Excellent 'A Torch Kept Lit'
A good starting point for learning about Buckley would be the 2017 book A Torch Kept Lit. Edited by the great James Rosen, he believes that “One of Buckley's greatest strengths” is “neglected in his vast catalogue of published works: his mastery of ...

A doctor races to contain a plague in Manchuria — but the bodies are vanishing
... the Baron's lack of efficacy is matched by his lack of personality, which makes for some slow, frustrating reading. He takes calligraphy breaks every few chapters, but this doesn't shed any light on his character or move the story along. “He was ...

Book Review: Heatwave
In this second dip into Park City's lesser side (the novel Porndance being author Zach Matheson's first), we get not-quite-sleezy but disenchanted detective Lincoln Coulter (Link) fishing on his day off. This is a murder mystery, so we enjoy this brief ...

11 New Books We Recommend This Week
“His books read like the brutal folklore history couldn't bear to remember,” Jamie Fisher writes in her review, “and his characters feel stranded, forgotten by time.” BIRDING WITHOUT BORDERS: An Obsession, a Quest and the Biggest Year in the World, by ...

Dubious arguments for curbing the free speech of Nazis
When I was a student during the days of McCarthyism, a book arguing for the censorship of extremist hate speech would have been titled “Must We Defend Communists?” Many of the arguments made by Richard Delgado and Jean Stefancic in “Must We Defend ...

Book review: Pierce is back with a Harry Potter-like tale of Numair's mage training days
Pierce's newest book is slow to build but is enjoyable in a Harry Potter-like way as the reader is able to watch Arram grow up, learn about magic and make friends with students and teachers. Arram is a sweet, shy boy who eventually grows to be ...

Book review (nonfiction): 'We Face the Dawn: Oliver Hill, Spottswood Robinson, and the Legal Team That Dismantled ...
Book review (nonfiction): 'We Face the Dawn: Oliver Hill, Spottswood Robinson, and the Legal Team That Dismantled ...

Book review: 'America: (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction' offers humor, 'alternative facts'
Note: This book is very loosely based on a true story (history) using “alternative facts.” For example, Thomas Jefferson writes the foreword. It has become popular, at least at CBS News, to cite three things you should know. Here are three things you ...

Book Review: The Butler's Child
Sadly, presciently, civil rights attorney Lewis Steel wrote the following words in his autobiography, The Butler's Child, which came out last year: “The hard truth today is that in all the years since Brown and notwithstanding all the other state and ...

Book review: Fraternity lynching at center of 'A Death in Live Oak'
James Grippando will discuss "A Death in Live Oak" at Book and Books in Coral Gables. (Monica Hopkins Photography/Courtesy). Oline CogdillCorrespondent. Privacy Policy. 'A Death in Live Oak' By James Grippando. Harper, 384 pages, $27.99. James ...

Book Review in 'The Washington Post' Exemplifies Anti-Israel Media Bias
In The Washington Post's recent article titled “Israel's official assassination machine,” Glenn Frankel reviews the book, Rise And Kill First: The Secret History of Israel's Targeted Assassinations, by Ronen Bergman. The thesis of the book (and the ...

BOOK REVIEW: "Myths and Mysteries of Oklahoma" by Robert L. Dorman
Author and researcher Robert L. Dorman, a native Oklahoman and a professor of library science at Oklahoma City University has assembled a diverse and interesting series of 12 “mind-boggling tales” that begins with a chapter on “Custer's Indian Family ...

Book Review: Star Trek: Deep Space Nine: Gamma – Original Sin
David R. George III's new novel is an odd duck of a book. It welds together two stories in parallel – one a fascinating and gripping sci-fi yarn bursting with intriguing and unusual concepts, that is filled with real terror, real suspense, and real ...

Book review: John Green's latest an enlightening read
I enjoyed getting to know her and hearing about what it's like to live the way she does, forced by the trap of her own mind. As I believe Green intended, the novel was, most of all, enlightening. The verdict? Even though it doesn't have a whole lot of ...

Book review | Aminah's World: Book keeps artist's hopes for children at forefront
More than two years after her death, artist Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson is the subject of a book that she no doubt would have appreciated: a picture book about her life and art with a charge to those who read it to turn their own life stories into art ...

Book Review: How We Became Human
I'm Connie Bennett, Director of Eugene Public Library, with a book review of “How We Became Human” by Joy Harjo. The National Endowment for the Arts has partnered with Arts Midwest to support over a decade of “Big Read” programs across the nation, in ...

Book Review: 'What to Do When Jane Knows DICK About Dating' gives valuable dating advice
However, despite these very, very small qualms, I truly do think that “What to Do When Jane Knows DICK About Dating,” was filled to the brim with fabulous advice that had me tabbing and highlighting almost every page. The chapters are short and to the ...

Rose McGowan on 'Brave'
On this week's podcast, McGowan talks about “Brave”; Katie Kitamura discusses Tom Malmquist's new novel, “In Every Moment We Are Still Alive”; Alexandra Alter has news from the literary world; and in a new segment, Critical Mass, The Times's staff book ...

Notes From the Book Review Archives
In this week's issue, Bill McKibben reviews Charles C. Mann's new double biography of William Vogt and Norman Bourlag. In 1948, Robert C. Cook reviewed Vogt's “Road to Survival,” an eloquent treatise on earth's future that Mann argues birthed modern ...

Book Review: 'The Dialogues: Conversations about the Nature of the Universe'
The book is essentially a series of conversations about science. Physicist Clifford Johnson takes the ancient, Socratic form of a dialogue and adapts it to the modern comic book environment. This medium is a metaphor in itself: Johnson believes we need ...

Has America created a misleading fable about the civil rights movement?
Theoharis implicitly urges students of the second reconstruction to review it anew, unbound by inherited inhibitions. But with respect to certain subjects, she is conspicuously silent. She keeps to herself, for instance, whether she believes that her ...

America's slow-motion military and policy disaster in Afghanistan and Pakistan
In Kabul in December, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani told Vice President Pence that more senior Taliban members had been killed in 2017 than in the previous 15 years combined. “Real progress,” Pence said. The dry language of wire reports does not reveal ...

Will we be able to feed the population or are we marching toward our destruction?
William Vogt was a prophet of doom. Seventy years ago, the ornithologist from Upstate New York first laid out the narrative of modern apocalyptic environmentalism with a brutal clarity that made him for a while a household name. The planet had a fixed ...

Book Review: It's My Party by Jeanette Watson
Jeanette Watson's memoir, “It's My Party,” will make your eyes glaze. Alas, it's like a bad party encounter, when somebody rambles on about riches and “famous” people his or her family has wined and dined. Watson is the granddaughter of Thomas Watson ...

Book Review: 'House of Eire' by June Gillam
Like a spider wrapping its victims one fine thread at a time, June Gillam will manage to do the same to readers. The layers of the story add on one thin thread at a time until we find ourselves stuck in the middle of it, struggling to figure it all out ...

BOOK REVIEW: The Alienist by Caleb Carr
The alienist is something of a profiler/psychologist. He studies the criminal mind and develops possibilities of what motivates the killer to meticulously find out who he is. Dr. Laszlo Kreizler, the alienist, is aided by reformed criminals who work in ...

Book Review: Champorcher's “High Spirits”
It is a rare person who does not ponder what the world will be like in the future, whether it be a century from now or only a decade out. That is what Summit County author Alan Champorcher has done in his novel "High Spirits," to enjoyable effect. The ...

Book review: 'Media Madness'
Kurtz's book is being compared to Michael Wolff's best-selling “Fire and Fury” because it depicts a chaotic White House and a president who refuses to be controlled by his keepers. Kurtz dubs this Trump conduct “defiance disorder.” But despite a ...

Book review: 'At the End of the Road'
When I received his email asking if I'd be interested in reading/reviewing his new book, I did not hesitate to respond. I'm glad I did. Shortly thereafter, we met at Judy's Castle for breakfast where he told me what inspired this project and what he ...

Book review: Dorsey's antihero reaches peak Florida-ism
Book tour veteran Dorsey (he comes to town this week – see Meet the Authors note) makes fun of this often tiresome and boring, but necessary, part of his craft in typical “crazy Serge” fashion. To keep attendees entertained. he has Serge discussing the ...

Book review: 'Bad Kid' is just following the family tradition
Claudeline (Claude) knew that her grandfather, Si Song, a Chinese crime boss in Brooklyn, wanted her to take over the family business one day. So, the feisty 11-year-old works hard to build her reputation as a petty thief and troublemaker. After ...

Book review: A troubling murder in Gardner's latest
Well-received Boston Police Sergeant Detective D. D. Warren is back on the job in award-winning thriller writer Lisa Gardner's latest. “Look for Me.” This case — a murder in the Brighton area of Boston of a 9-year-old boy, his 13-year-old sister, his ...

Oklahoman book review: 'Murder in the Manuscript Room' by Con Lehane
“Murder in the Manuscript Room” is the second book in a murder-mystery series featuring a New York City librarian, Raymond Ambler, who is an expert in crime fiction. The possibilities are exciting for fans of the genre who might expect this expert ...

Book review – Alone Together: Tales of Sisterhood and Solitude in Latin America
Alone Together is a book about solo female travel and some of the people and places that 36 women from 17 different countries and all kinds of backgrounds encounter on their journeys. This diverse group of women – from backpackers to an octogenarian ...

BOOK REVIEW: Paul Kraus Survived Peritoneal Mesothelioma, Read His Story
Paul Kraus represents a breakthrough in peritoneal mesothelioma treatment. He holds the mantle of the man who has survived for the longest period of time with the disease, defying the idea that it's an automatic death sentence. Paul Kraus represents a ...

Book Review: Rethinking Incarceration: Advocating for Justice That Restores
In his first-rate book, Rethinking Incarceration: Advocating for Justice That Restores, Reverend Dominique Gilliard provides a very convincing and spellbinding narrative that explores the history and foundation of mass incarceration by exploring the ...

BOOK REVIEW: Profs say 'victimhood culture' causing violence
A forthcoming book by two sociology professors contends that victimhood culture is causing a new “moral conflict” across college campuses. The Rise of Victimhood Culture, to be published next week by Palgrave MacMillan, eschews traditional thinking ...

Zadie Smith riffs on Jay-Z, Philip Roth and Justin Bieber in feel-good 'Feel Free'
Smith's wanderlust occasionally leads to some dead ends, as when she strenuously labors to connect Justin Bieber and philosopher Martin Buber by dint of their last names. “I know, I know,” she writes, recognizing the absurdity of her conceit. But she's ...

Powerful novel imagines aftermath of a Newtown-like school shooting
Yes, at times it's hard to read. When you pick up Rhiannon Navin's debut novel Only Child (Knopf, 288 pp., out of four), which tells the story of a Sandy Hook-like mass school shooting from the point of view of a 6-year-old boy who loses his brother ...

Mourning With the Help of a Great Dane
Reading their papers about books, she thinks: “You got customer reviews full of umbrage, suggesting that if a book didn't affirm what the reader already felt — what they could identify with, what they could relate to — the author had no business ...

Women of color 'Sing' proudly in new essay collection
All the Women in My Family Sing (Nothing But the Truth, 361 pp., out of four) is a vivid ode to American identity in all its shades. The essay collection, edited by Deborah Santana, features the words of 69 women of color who pen stories that are ...

Book review: Dorsey's serial killer avenges 'The Pope of Palm Beach'
Who knew that Serge A. Storms, the so-called hero -- actually more an anti-hero -- of Tim Dorsey's comic mysteries was such a bibliophile? But that makes sense because how else did Serge become such a lover — and defender — of Florida history. Serge ...

So You Want to Talk About Race: When a book calls you out
I learned so much reading this book. I have a better understanding around hot button issues like police brutality and cultural appropriation. And yes, privilege. It's crazy how much you forget to be grateful for when you take it for granted. READ THIS ...

The Book Room
Working with modular synthesizers, percussion, and the occasional field recording, the Swiss musician creates rippling, finely detailed soundscapes with one foot in the natural world. Repetitive but always morphing, never playing a given loop the same ...

Book Review: Things Fall Apart
Chinua Achebe's 1958 novel, Things Fall Apart, which takes its title from W.B. Yeats's poem, “The Second Coming,” is set in late-nineteenth century Nigeria and spans both the pre-colonial and post-colonial eras. Although the novel serves as a ...

Book review: Kids' Valentine's Day books by various authors and illustrators
“I Love Kisses” is very simple in language and may be perfect for the youngest readers, while “Click, Clack, Moo I Love You!” and “Valensteins” are silly enough for pre-schoolers and early gradeschool kids. And children who are a bit older – perhaps ...


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