Biography & Memoir Book Reviews

RHYTHM OF THE WILD by Kim Heacox
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 7, 2015

"Top-notch environmental writing to shelve alongside George Perkins Marsh, Aldo Leopold, Robert Marshall and Barry Lopez."
Former National Park Service ranger Heacox (John Muir and the Ice that Started a Fire: How a Visionary and the Glaciers of Alaska Changed America, 2014, etc.) lyrically recounts his passionate and enduring relationship with Alaska's Denali National Park, a chunk of Alaskan land the size of Massachusetts with only one road.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 11, 2015

"A solid piece of research that reveals both the strengths and weaknesses of a now-forgotten man who loved a good story and could put a comic spin on important social issues."
A warts-and-all portrait of Harry Golden (1903-1981), founder of the North Carolina newspaper Carolina Israelite.Read full book review >

THE STORY OF ALICE by Robert Douglas-Fairhurst
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 11, 2015

"The magic of the work is well-served here but with just a bit too much extraneous information."
Douglas-Fairhurst (English Literature/Magdalen Coll., Oxford; Becoming Dickens: The Invention of a Novelist, 2011, etc.) delivers a biography of Charles Dodgson (1832-1898), aka Lewis Carroll, that might be better described as a sociological study of Victorian England.Read full book review >
REAGAN by H.W. Brands
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"An exemplary work of history that should bring Reagan a touch more respect in some regards but that removes the halo at the same time."
Monumental life of the president whom some worship and some despise—with Brands (History/Univ. of Texas; The Man Who Saved the Union: Ulysses Grant in War and Peace, 2012, etc.) providing plenty of justification for both reactions.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"A rich but meandering book that will mostly appeal to like-minded fans."
One horror fan's mélange of memories, opinions and movie facts. Read full book review >

THE ROSE HOTEL by Rahimeh Andalibian
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"A powerful and uplifting memoir of tragedy and healing."
A New York-based clinical psychologist tells the moving story of the life-changing trauma she and her family suffered as a result of the Iranian Revolution of 1979. Read full book review >
YEAR OF THE DUNK by Asher Price
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"In this briskly paced book, readers will recognize the courage and tenacity of everyday competitors and the power and awe-inspiring achievements of elite athletes."
Austin American-Statesman energy and environment reporter Price seeks to overcome his "genetic foibles" in pursuit of a singular and profound experience: dunking an NBA basketball. Read full book review >
UNIVERSAL MAN by Richard Davenport-Hines
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"An admiring and nuanced book filled with insights into this scholar and man of action in all his complexity."
An unconventional biography of the brilliant economist who shaped British public life in the 20th century. Read full book review >
LORD FEAR by Lucas Mann
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"In constructing his aching, poignant narrative, Mann offers a fine meditation on fate and on how 'the story of addiction is the story of memory, and how we never get it right.'"
An ambitious, literary-minded memoir of the author's relationship with his late brother, a much older heroin addict. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"The fascinating story of a figure who deserves to be much better known."
Seyler (Emerita, English/Northern Virginia Community Coll.) delivers a biography of William Bankes (1786-1855), one of the first Europeans to document the ruins of ancient Egypt. Read full book review >
HOLD STILL by Sally Mann
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"Generously illustrated, Mann's memoir is testimony to photography's power to evoke tender, lucent portraits of the past."
A journey of self-discovery begins in family archives. Read full book review >
LAST MAN OFF by Matt Lewis
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"A darkly exhilarating memoir of tragedy at sea."
A harrowing high-seas, high-stakes adventure where dread pools slowly like the first signs of seawater collecting on the deck of a cursed ship. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Mona Eltahawy
April 28, 2015

In her debut book, Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution, Egyptian-American journalist and commentator Mona Eltahawy mounts an angry indictment of the treatment of women throughout the Arab world. Born in Egypt, she spent her childhood in London, moving with her family to Saudi Arabia when she was 15. Her shock was immediate and visceral: “It felt as though we’d moved to another planet whose inhabitants fervently wished women did not exist,” she recalls. Women could not travel, work or even go to a doctor’s appointment without male approval. We talk to Eltahawy this week on Kirkus TV about her arresting new book. View video >