Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 974)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"The book's obvious title, already used for a Monk documentary, is a perfect tipoff that Gourse has little to say about her subject that is imaginative or useful. (photos, not seen)"
A ramshackle biography of the legendary jazz innovator. Read full book review >
THE FINAL ACT by Gregor Dallas
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"A gripping and highly original work of popular history. (50 illustrations, 3 maps, not seen)"
A broad, colorful, engaging panorama of a crucial moment in the shaping of modern Europe, tracing the fall of Napoleon and the wily maneuvers of the victors to carve up his collapsed empire. Read full book review >

COUSINS by Athol Fugard
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Good enough to intrigue Fugard's admirers, but not good enough to draw in anyone else. (photos, not seen)"
Memories of two male relatives whom the noted South African playwright believes helped inspire him to write, mingled with bittersweet recollections of his youth, in a poignant but underdeveloped memoir. Read full book review >
ARCHIBALD COX by Ken Gormley
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Otherwise, this well-written biography will be of most interest to students of law in the public interest. (b&w photos, not seen)"
The jurist who gave Richard Nixon fits receives his due in a satisfying biography. Read full book review >
WOUNDS OF PASSION by bell hooks
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Only a writer as good and determinedly idiosyncratic as hooks could have produced a book as misguided as this."
In her 15th book, hooks continues the memoir she began in Bone Black (1996). Read full book review >

GENERAL ALEXANDER LEBED by Alexander Lebed
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

This memoir—by the general brought in to enable Yeltsin to win the last election—is thoughtful and clear-eyed on military matters, but on politics it sounds like the officers' mess after midnight. Read full book review >
BRIGHT PARADISE by Peter Raby
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Importantly, Raby shows how the works of the explorers shaped a new Darwinian and colonialist worldview, one that remains mighty influential in the modern imagination. (8 pages illustrations and maps)"
A lucid and lively survey of Victorian explorers from Raby (English/Homerton College, Cambridge). ``For the English in the nineteenth century, abroad, and especially the Empire and the colonies, existed to bring things back from,'' notes Raby in a neat introductory capsulization. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"While testing the general reader's patience at times, this should prove an exhaustive resource for intellectual historians and a fitting foundation myth for future Africanists to look back to. (36 b&w photos, 8 maps, not seen) (Author tour)"
The genial but almost overwhelmingly painstaking autobiography of a founding figure in the field of African history. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"A vibrant natural (and human) history of a biomassive throughway where large patches still remain unknown. (2 maps, not seen)"
The unique evolutionary story of the species-rich Central American land bridge is eloquently chronicled by Wallace (The Quetzal and the Macaw, 1992, etc.). Read full book review >
DAUGHTER OF THE QUEEN OF SHEBA by Jacki Lyden
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Lyden memorably illuminates both the alluring fantasy and the shocking reality of madness in a volume filled with poetry and awe. (First printing of 50,000; $50,000 ad/promo; author tour)"
Three powerful women form the backbone of this beautifully written narrative about the wish, both rational and not, to be elsewhere: crusty, earthy Mabel; her daughter Dolores, the self- styled Queen of Sheba in her manic visions; and the author, Dolores's daughter, a reporter for NPR. Read full book review >
VIGIL by Alan Shapiro
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"Has its moments, both sad and profound, but as a memoir of a sister's life and death, it's far outclassed by Richard Stern's 1995 A Sistermony."
Award-wining poet Shapiro, whose first memoir, The Last Happy Occasion (not reviewed) was highly acclaimed, wrenches all he can from this chronicle of his sister's death from breast cancer. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 1, 1997

"After a session with this lyrical book, the reader will understand, too."
A capable guided tour of a landscape unlike almost any other. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Andrea Beaty
August 30, 2016

In Andrea Beaty and David Roberts’ new picture book Ada Twist, Scientist is like her classmates, builder Iggy and inventor Rosie: scientist Ada, a character of color, has a boundless imagination and has always been hopelessly curious. Why are there pointy things stuck to a rose? Why are there hairs growing inside your nose? When her house fills with a horrific, toe-curling smell, Ada knows it’s up to her to find the source. Not afraid of failure, she embarks on a fact-finding mission and conducts scientific experiments, all in the name of discovery. But this time, her experiments lead to even more stink and get her into trouble! Inspired by real-life makers such as Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie, Ada Twist, Scientist champions girl power and women scientists, and brings welcome diversity to picture books about girls in science. “Cool and stylish,” our reviewer writes. View video >