Books by Keith Elliot Greenberg

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2010

"Timely and significant—a dark look through a dark glass onto the events of 30 years past."
A panoramic view of the events leading up to the infamous murder of John Lennon (1940-1980). Read full book review >
JESSE VENTURA by Keith Elliot Greenberg
Released: Dec. 28, 1999

paper 0-8225-9680-6 A biography that highlights Ventura's controversial gubernatorial campaign; unfortunately, the book spends too much time fawning over Jesse "the Body" and too little time analyzing what's coming out of "the Mouth" for young readers to truly understand the man. Greenberg (The Haitian Family, 1998, etc.), who assisted Ventura with his column for World Wrestling Federation Magazine, chronicles his subject's life from his working-class background in Minneapolis, through his career as a Navy SEAL, his wrestling stardom, and his political aspirations. The book fails to offer any opposing views of Ventura's celebrity or policies, painting Ventura as an environmentalist for supporting Minnesota wetlands as mayor but omitting any mention of how he has weakened environmental prohibitions of jet skis (of which Ventura owns four). The book ends with Ventura's election, so no mention is made of his comments on the Littleton, Colorado, shootings, nor—of course—of his recent remarks concerning organized religion, depression, etc. Researchers will be better served by current magazine and newspaper articles about the governor than by this unfettered bit of boosterism. (photos, source, bibliography, index) (Biography. 12-14) Read full book review >
A HAITIAN FAMILY by Keith Elliot Greenberg
CHILDREN'S
Released: Jan. 7, 1998

The focus of this entry in the Journey Between Two Worlds series is not a family; instead, Greenberg (Magic Johnson, 1992, etc.) succinctly covers the history and politics of Haiti and how the latter has affected refugees, one family in particular. An introduction defines refugees and the different reasons for the displacement of people; it is seen as a complex problem with ``no easy answers.'' The history of Haiti is described, as are recent events there; the effect of these events upon Bazelais Beaubrun and his wife and four children is clear—thus, history comes alive. Readers learn of the family's persecution, the perilous voyage by flimsy boat to the US, detention at a Florida camp, and immigration to New York City. The city is not paradise; they live in a dangerous neighborhood and cling to connections with their Haitian community; Greenberg also presents the advantages of their new life, and it is telling that the family elects to stay in New York while a democracy is set into place in their homeland. A worthy and fascinating introduction to issues of politics, history, and sociology, the book has some flaws: occasionally choppy transitions, short shrift on customs and religion, and disruptive parenthetical explications of words, e.g., ``colony (overseas settlement)''; it's a patchy solution to the problem of addressing difficult concepts. For the most part, the quality of the illustrative material is clear and instructive; a painting of ``boat people'' at sea being rescued by a helicopter is heart-wrenching. (further reading, index) (Nonfiction. 8-12) Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY
Released: May 5, 1992

The fantasy world we build around professional athletes took a serious hit when this NBA superstar announced his HIV infection and retirement. Here, a simply phrased account of Johnson's record-breaking basketball career is sandwiched between an analysis of the announcement's immediate effects and a look at his other career as a successful businessman. This is timely but superficial: the ``If I can get it, anyone can'' message is delivered, but readers will not learn much more about AIDS or the AIDS crisis, nor are they directed to other books or organizations that might help. Marginally useful for assignments; better efforts are probably in the pipeline. B&w photos. (Biography. 11-13) Read full book review >
NEW KIDS ON THE BLOCK by Keith Elliot Greenberg
Released: Nov. 9, 1990

Journalist Greenberg, who has written children's biographies of several other popular figures, presents an uncritical look at this wildly successful group. He tells how the group began (soft-pedaling the role of its entrepreneurial organizer), lauds its wholesome image and stand against drugs, and gives each kid a couple of pages to himself, carefully noting such details as color of eyes and hair. Beyond suggesting its eclectic origins and appeal, Greenberg offers little about their music; the kids are pictured as "having a blast" (despite the inconveniences of universal recognition) and as hoping to have more input, in the future, in their dance routines and music. Routine treatment of high-interest subject. Read full book review >