Current Affairs Book Reviews

REPLENISH by Sandra Postel
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"An informative, purposeful argument about why we must accept the moral as well as practical responsibility of water stewardship."
Why well-functioning natural ecosystems—"watersheds, wetlands, floodplains, and river systems"—play as important a role in our economic infrastructure as dams, canals, and water treatment plants. Read full book review >
THE ABU DHABI BAR MITZVAH by Adam Valen  Levinson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 14, 2017

"While Karachi or Aleppo may not be next year's hot vacation destinations, Levinson proves there's ample reason to go."
While the blank spaces on the maps have long since been filled in, the psychological barriers walling off regions of the world where Westerners dare not tread are as tall as ever. Here, a "multimedia backpack journalist" explores some of them. Read full book review >

Released: Nov. 7, 2017

"Required reading for those who want to understand the connections between Muslims and terrorism."
A U.S. Army War College instructor shares his scholarship about the Muslim faith through the centuries to explain how a minority of Muslims became global terrorists. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"Though the author sets aside 'Boko Haram's treatment of women' due to 'reasons of space,' he offers a highly useful, timely, illuminating work about a little-understood terrorist group."
A diagnostic study of the ultraconservative "mobile jihadist gang" from Nigeria that has taken a violent toll on government and civilians alike. Read full book review >
UNBELIEVABLE by Katy Tur
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 12, 2017

"A thoughtful account of covering what the author rightly calls 'the most unlikely, exciting, ugly, trying, and all-around bizarre campaign in American history.'"
One of Donald Trump's favorite media targets tells how she attained that distinction in this spry look at the 2016 campaign. Read full book review >

Released: Nov. 14, 2017

"A frightening, scientifically grounded, and starkly relevant look at how climate change will affect coastal cities."
How the impending rise in sea levels caused by increasing amounts of carbon dioxide in the air will make life on the edge of the ocean very different over the next century. Read full book review >
IMPEACHMENT by Cass R. Sunstein
Released: Oct. 30, 2017

"A welcome, timely, ideal primer."
A compact, concise, and highly relevant civics lesson. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 2017

"A provocative, well-argued view of practices mostly abandoned by the nations of the world save for a few—the U.S. notable among them."
Study of the phenomenon of political imprisonment, a favorite ploy of authoritarians throughout history. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 10, 2017

"A provocative look at the transformation of academia to a broad chessboard of international espionage."
An examination of how colleges and universities have become enmeshed in the world of espionage. Read full book review >
THE LAST GIRL by Nadia  Murad
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 7, 2017

"A devastating yet ultimately inspiring memoir that doubles as an urgent call to action."
A raw, terrifying account of religious genocide and life in captivity under the Islamic State by a young Yazidi woman who survived it. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 14, 2017

"A potent, convincing manifesto on how female sexual equality marches onward despite cultural roadblocks."
A feminist perspective on sexual power and its uses and abuses in America. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 17, 2017

"A prescient discussion of one of the darkest issues facing America today."
An alarming, well-researched account of how the far-right extremist underground became empowered in the era of Trump. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >