Current Affairs Book Reviews

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 2, 2015

"As the author notes early on, health care is one of the few areas where people willingly cede control over to others, but with this useful book, patients can have more say over what direction treatment takes rather than just going along for the ride."
A primer on making the right moves as an active participant in your health care. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A brief, genuine, heartfelt memoir of an awe-inspiring life."
A South African nurse's memoir of how she escaped grinding poverty to become a beloved advocate for and caretaker of homeless children. Read full book review >

AFTER NATURE by Jedediah Purdy
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A profound vision of post-humanistic ethics."
Purdy (Law/Duke Univ.; A Tolerable Anarchy: Rebels, Reactionaries, and the Making of American Freedom, 2009, etc.) examines the growing awareness of the relationship between humans and other species, which could create "a Copernican revolution in ethical imagination." Read full book review >
THE ISRAELI MIND by Alon Gratch
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A solid overview of how psychology, rather than violence, might provide the way to peace."
An attempt "to forge a comprehensive, provocative, and accessible narrative about the Israeli mind." Read full book review >
INVISIBLE IN AUSTIN by Javier Auyero
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A scholarly study conducted with dignity and thoroughness."
A sociological study focusing on the experiences of 11 characters toiling in the underbelly of a vibrant American city. Read full book review >

WHY WE WORK by Barry Schwartz
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"A call, in a few pointed words, for an expanded, genuine work ethic."
Schwartz (Psychology/Swarthmore Coll.; The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less, 2003, etc.) begs to differ with Adam Smith—it's not simply wages that keep people working.Read full book review >
$2.00 A DAY by Kathryn J. Edin
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"An eye-opening account of the lives ensnared in the new poverty cycle."
An analysis of the growing portion of American poor who live on an average of $2 per day. Read full book review >
THE AUDACIOUS ASCETIC by Flagg Miller
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"Dense, scholarly, and bizarrely compelling."
A painstakingly researched examination of a "never-before-studied" collection of 1,500 audiotapes detailing Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida's theoretical and organizational development. Read full book review >
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"Useful for anyone with a horse in the race regarding law enforcement—in other words, most American citizens."
A handbook for making sense of America's approach to crime and incarceration and its effect on communities across the country. Read full book review >
RELENTLESS STRIKE by Sean Naylor
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 1, 2015

"Packed with anecdotes that will appeal to dedicated military buffs, but the encyclopedic prose will lose average readers."
A history of the Joint Special Operations Command, one of the most elite and little-understood pieces of the American military. Read full book review >
KILL THE SILENCE by Monika Kørra
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 25, 2015

"An intimate and honest memoir of survival after trauma."
A former Southern Methodist University track star's account of how she survived a brutal rape that changed her life. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 25, 2015

"Promising prescriptions to five of India's baneful environmental cases—right thinking and accusatory in all the right places."
Journalist Subramanian examines a handful of environmental woes besetting India, along with hopeful remedies. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Vanessa Diffenbaugh
September 1, 2015

Vanessa Diffenbaugh is the New York Timesbestselling author of The Language of Flowers; her new novel, We Never Asked for Wings, is about young love, hard choices, and hope against all odds. For 14 years, Letty Espinosa has worked three jobs around San Francisco to make ends meet while her mother raised her children—Alex, now 15, and Luna, six—in their tiny apartment on a forgotten spit of wetlands near the bay. But now Letty’s parents are returning to Mexico, and Letty must step up and become a mother for the first time in her life. “Diffenbaugh’s latest confirms her gift for creating shrewd, sympathetic charmers,” our reviewer writes. View video >