Bosnia-Herzegovina to hate just about everybody.

ATATURK

THE BIOGRAPHY OF THE FOUNDER OF MODERN TURKEY

Turkish author Mango (Turkey: The Challenge of a New Role, 1994) draws upon official archives and international sources

to piece together a substantial biography of the father of modern Turkey. The "Young Turk" Mustafa Kemal Ataturk rose to prominence fighting the Allies in WWI, distinguishing himself at Gallipoli and Syria and outpacing his rivals to take command of the armed forces. But it was his shrewd, patient politics that made him the savior of his defeated country, as he pitted the overextended Allied occupiers against themselves and eventually drove out the French, the British, the tenacious Italians, and—worst of all from the Turkish point of view—the Greeks. Under Ataturk’s direction, the moribund Ottoman Empire (which in the 17th century had extended to the very gates of Vienna but by the outbreak of WWI was renowned as the "Sick Man of Europe") gave way to a modern parliamentary state. Ruthless, certainly, and vain (but also logical, idealistic, and visionary), Ataturk took steps to revive a war-ravaged economy, consolidated his decimated military, extended suffrage to women, and advocated the equal treatment under the law of Greek and Jewish minorities. Though Turkey is heavily Islamic, he insisted upon the separation of church and state. In his revolutionary zeal Ataturk sometimes brought to mind the excesses of the French Revolution—he banned fezzes and turbans, for instance, and mandated the adoption of European-style hats—but he modernized and stabilized Turkey, and there is an active cult devoted to him among his countrymen today. Mango barrages the reader with details, yet he is never dry. He paints an admiring portrait of a political genius and, in the process, goes a long way in explaining why history has caused Greeks to hate Turks, Turks to hate Greeks, and the citizens of

Bosnia-Herzegovina to hate just about everybody.

Pub Date: April 1, 2000

ISBN: 1-58567-011-1

Page Count: 666

Publisher: Overlook

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2000

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Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

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UNTAMED

More life reflections from the bestselling author on themes of societal captivity and the catharsis of personal freedom.

In her third book, Doyle (Love Warrior, 2016, etc.) begins with a life-changing event. “Four years ago,” she writes, “married to the father of my three children, I fell in love with a woman.” That woman, Abby Wambach, would become her wife. Emblematically arranged into three sections—“Caged,” “Keys,” “Freedom”—the narrative offers, among other elements, vignettes about the soulful author’s girlhood, when she was bulimic and felt like a zoo animal, a “caged girl made for wide-open skies.” She followed the path that seemed right and appropriate based on her Catholic upbringing and adolescent conditioning. After a downward spiral into “drinking, drugging, and purging,” Doyle found sobriety and the authentic self she’d been suppressing. Still, there was trouble: Straining an already troubled marriage was her husband’s infidelity, which eventually led to life-altering choices and the discovery of a love she’d never experienced before. Throughout the book, Doyle remains open and candid, whether she’s admitting to rigging a high school homecoming court election or denouncing the doting perfectionism of “cream cheese parenting,” which is about “giving your children the best of everything.” The author’s fears and concerns are often mirrored by real-world issues: gender roles and bias, white privilege, racism, and religion-fueled homophobia and hypocrisy. Some stories merely skim the surface of larger issues, but Doyle revisits them in later sections and digs deeper, using friends and familial references to personify their impact on her life, both past and present. Shorter pieces, some only a page in length, manage to effectively translate an emotional gut punch, as when Doyle’s therapist called her blooming extramarital lesbian love a “dangerous distraction.” Ultimately, the narrative is an in-depth look at a courageous woman eager to share the wealth of her experiences by embracing vulnerability and reclaiming her inner strength and resiliency.

Doyle offers another lucid, inspiring chronicle of female empowerment and the rewards of self-awareness and renewal.

Pub Date: March 10, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-9848-0125-8

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Dial Books

Review Posted Online: Dec. 22, 2019

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2020

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A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor...

INTO THE WILD

The excruciating story of a young man on a quest for knowledge and experience, a search that eventually cooked his goose, told with the flair of a seasoned investigative reporter by Outside magazine contributing editor Krakauer (Eiger Dreams, 1990). 

Chris McCandless loved the road, the unadorned life, the Tolstoyan call to asceticism. After graduating college, he took off on another of his long destinationless journeys, this time cutting all contact with his family and changing his name to Alex Supertramp. He was a gent of strong opinions, and he shared them with those he met: "You must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life''; "be nomadic.'' Ultimately, in 1992, his terms got him into mortal trouble when he ran up against something—the Alaskan wild—that didn't give a hoot about Supertramp's worldview; his decomposed corpse was found 16 weeks after he entered the bush. Many people felt McCandless was just a hubris-laden jerk with a death wish (he had discarded his map before going into the wild and brought no food but a bag of rice). Krakauer thought not. Admitting an interest that bordered on obsession, he dug deep into McCandless's life. He found a willful, reckless, moody boyhood; an ugly little secret that sundered the relationship between father and son; a moral absolutism that agitated the young man's soul and drove him to extremes; but he was no more a nutcase than other pilgrims. Writing in supple, electric prose, Krakauer tries to make sense of McCandless (while scrupulously avoiding off-the-rack psychoanalysis): his risky behavior and the rites associated with it, his asceticism, his love of wide open spaces, the flights of his soul.

A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor will it to readers of Krakauer's narrative. (4 maps) (First printing of 35,000; author tour)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-679-42850-X

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Villard

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1995

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