Biography & Memoir Book Reviews (page 983)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 4, 1993

"Kaiser has an acquaintanceship as vast as his memory, and he's at his best when discussing the personalities of well-known friends."
An anecdotal memoir from diplomat and politician Kaiser, former US ambassador to Hungary and Austria. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 4, 1993

"Laqueur—calm, canny, humane, and willing to say the unpopular thing—stands here as a highly credible witness to history. (Sixteen pages of b&w photographs—not seen.)"
Vivid memoirs by veteran historian Laqueur (Stalin, 1990, etc.), who witnessed the era of Adolf Hitler, the founding of Israel, and much more. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 4, 1993

"Olympia deserves better and, fortunately, she received it in Otto Friedrich's Olympia (p. 30), which captured her dignity and stature as an icon of her age."
In this confusing and self-serving study, Lipton (formerly, Art History/SUNY-Binghamton; Looking into Degas, 1986—not reviewed) claims to find in Victorine Meurent (Manet's favorite model, known as ``Olympia''): herself; a mother-figure; and a surrogate victim of the patriarchal community of artists and art historians. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Still, 15 years later, he fails to thoughtfully analyze what his drive for the grand scale ultimately meant."
A backbiting, freewheeling account of irrevocably shaking up the country's leading museum—told at breakneck speed by former Metropolitan Museum of Art Director Hoving (Discovery, 1989, etc.). Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"A vivid, first-rate biography of a judicial hero. (Thirty-two b&w photographs.)"
Bass (Journalism/Univ. of Mississippi; Unlikely Heroes, 1981, etc.), using extensive quotes from taped interviews with his subject and others, tells the story of an outstanding and heroic federal judge: Frank M. Johnson of Alabama, who, despite the constant threat of violence in the explosive 1960's South, contributed to the achievement of racial justice in numerous landmark civil-rights cases. Read full book review >

CHARLES SANDERS PEIRCE by Joseph Brent
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"It may be possible to offer more subtle and revealing readings of Peirce's character, but it would be hard to write a more sympathetic and eloquent one. (Thirty-five b&w photographs—not seen.)"
After completing his doctoral dissertation on Peirce (1839- 1914), Brent (Intellectual History/University of the District of Columbia) waited 30 years to gain access to the private papers of the controversial founder of pragmatism and semiotics—papers that were suppressed by a Harvard faculty who believed they were protecting Peirce's intellectual reputation—and to write this biography. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Thorough and relentless as a chronicle of centuries of strife- -but also severely fragmented and unable to reconcile its air of travelogue with a more compelling critical agenda. (Illustrations; maps.)"
An erudite but lackluster interweaving of recent travels by Gott (literary editor of the London Guardian; Guerrilla Movements in Latin America, 1971) with more than four centuries of European forays into the South American interior and the vast swamplands of Bolivia, Paraguay, and Brazil. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Lively, richly informative, deeply satisfying—a staple in Lindbergh studies. (Photos.)"
This judiciously empathic biography from Milton (The Yellow Kids, 1989), with its dazzling breadth of research, is the keystone of this season's Lindbergh-centered publications: Dorothy Herrmann's fine portrait of Anne Morrow Lindbergh (p. 1234); and Reeve Lindbergh's fictional familial tribute, The Names of the Mountains, (p. 1208), plus her poems and photos, in View from the Air (p. 1140), for the juvenile shelf. Read full book review >
CHAIM WEIZMANN by Jehuda Reinharz
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Not so much compelling as admirably—perhaps definitively- -detailed. (Photographs.)"
Well-documented but slow-moving second volume in Reinharz's monumental three-volume biography of Israel's first president (Chaim Weizmann: The Making of a Zionist Leader, 1985). Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"A lost reputation rises from the dead and adds a fearless new voice to the black Renaissance. (Fourteen halftones—not seen.)"
Richly voiced African-American memoir by Davis (1905-87), a journalist-poet who disappeared in 1948 and became known as the ``mystery poet.'' This memoir has been lovingly edited by John Edgar Tidwell (English/Miami University of Ohio) from a variety of manuscripts put together after Davis's death, and it may be expanded if more of his second volume, That Incredible Waikiki Jungle, is ever found. Read full book review >
STRAVINSKY by Robert Craft
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"But for those with an already established interest in the diverse outpourings of a genius, nearly indispensable. (Illustrations.)"
A brilliant hodgepodge of pieces about the life and art of the 20th century's greatest composer, by his longtime associate and amanuensis. Read full book review >
A TASTE OF POWER by Elaine Brown
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 1, 1993

"Timely, front-row view of a turbulent era. Put it on the shelf beside The Autobiography of Malcolm X."
Engrossing, jolting, behind-the-scenes memoir by the woman who led the Black Panther Party to mainstream power-brokering without giving up the guns, and who ended up fleeing its violence: a stunning picture of a black woman's coming of age in America. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Gabrielle Zevin
March 3, 2015

A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over—and see everything anew. “Zevin writes characters who grow and prosper,” our reviewer writes, “in a narrative that is sometimes sentimental, sometimes funny, sometimes true to life and always entertaining.” View video >