A welcome history suitable for World War I aficionados and budding journalists.

AN UNLADYLIKE PROFESSION

AMERICAN WOMEN WAR CORRESPONDENTS IN WORLD WAR I

In American Journalists in the Great War (2017), Dubbs barely mentioned the women reporters of World War I. This follow-up book is an impressive corrective.

The author explores the careers of nearly 40 courageous women who covered the war for newspapers, news syndicates, magazines, and other publications. Most of the principals will be unfamiliar to general readers, but their bylines were widespread from 1915 through 1919. Two of the most well-known names are the journalists who also found success as novelists: Edith Wharton, who worked for Scribner’s Magazine and the Saturday Evening Post; and Mary Roberts Rinehart, “America’s most popular mystery novelist when she traveled to Europe in 1915 to be a war correspondent.” Other recognizable names—at least to readers versed in the history of journalism—include Nellie Bly and Louise Bryant. In addition to the rich anecdotes and samplings of their reporting provided by Dubbs, period photographs enhance the engaging portrayal of wartime drama. Another strength of the book is the author's decision to focus not just on Western European countries, but also on the battlegrounds of Turkey, Armenia, Serbia, Bulgaria, Greece, and Russia. Of the newspapers and magazines hiring women to report about the war, the Saturday Evening Post was perhaps the most prominent and aggressive (and women-friendly), and Dubbs covers it appropriately. “While the Post’s coverage included the military, political, and economic components of war,” he writes, “its women correspondents showed…the impact on the home, family, and individual lives.” In her foreword, PBS NewsHour anchor Judy Woodruff admirably ties the reporting of women journalists currently covering global conflicts to the work of those during WWI: “Today’s intrepid female reporters stand on the shoulders of women who pioneered the role.” Readers will be inspired by the nearly unimaginable obstacles these journalists overcame to perform their jobs with flair.

A welcome history suitable for World War I aficionados and budding journalists.

Pub Date: July 1, 2020

ISBN: 978-1-64012-306-9

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Potomac Books

Review Posted Online: March 22, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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