Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 3)

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"Well-written and superbly reported."
An absorbing account of the clash between environmentalists and oyster farmers in the coastal towns north of San Francisco. Read full book review >
THE TAIL WAGS THE DOG by Efraim Karsh
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"A strong dose of familiar anger and bitterness without solutions."
An Israeli scholar offers a pessimistic rehashing of what he sees as the "endemic malaise" of the Arab states in spite of—or because of—Western acquiescence and retreat. Read full book review >

BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"A hackle-raising book about nature and human nature, venality and justice, and how disasters—before, during, and after—sharply mirror society."
How the most significant deleterious factor in natural disasters may be the human element. Read full book review >
BLUE by Joe Domanick
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"Sprawling, engrossing, and highly relevant to the ongoing controversies about policing post-Ferguson, which Domanick addresses in an epilogue."
An incisive examination of American policing, using a tumultuous two decades in Los Angeles as a lens. Read full book review >
SPINNER by Michael J. Bowler
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 5, 2015

"An overstuffed horror story, but one that will both warm the heart and chill the spine."
Bowler's (And the Children Shall Lead, 2014, etc.) YA novel pits brave, resourceful special needs teenagers against a whole shelf's worth of supernatural scares. Read full book review >

GIVE US THE BALLOT by Ari Berman
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Not just a compelling history, but a cry for help in the recurring struggle to gain what is supposed to be an inalienable right."
An incisive look at the many issues surrounding the right to vote. Read full book review >
DOING GOOD BETTER by William MacAskill
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Highly useful guidelines to finding the perfect charity worthy of your money."
How to determine which charities are the best to support. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"For a country that uses standardized testing more than any other in the world, this skills-based model represents a shift in thinking that could very well establish a shift in results."
Embedded with teachers on the front lines of education, Mother Jones education reporter Rizga delivers a firsthand report on a "failing" school system.Read full book review >
THE BORN FREES by Kimberly Burge
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 3, 2015

"An affecting portrait of post-apartheid South Africa, particularly useful for writing instructors serving at-risk constituencies."
Journalist Burge recounts a sojourn in a township outside Cape Town working with a writing group called Amazw'Entombi, or "Voices of the Girls."Read full book review >
DANCING WITH THE DEVIL IN THE CITY OF GOD by Juliana Barbassa
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 28, 2015

"Energetic, intrepid reporting by an insider."
Frank, fluid dispatches from her hometown by an Associated Press correspondent relocated to Rio de Janeiro just as the city was supposed to be poised for greatness—or was it? Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 28, 2015

"Occasionally uneven, but an impassioned and honest memoir from an author determined to prove himself worthy."
This story of the personal struggle of an undocumented alien underscores the need for comprehensive immigration reform. Read full book review >
UNMANNED by William M. Arkin
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 28, 2015

"This well-informed but quirky analysis of the development of drone warfare and its ongoing effect on the nation's military strategy is the latest lament for the disappearance of personal honor and valor from warfare that began in 1914."
"I see drones and the Data Machine they serve…as the greatest threat to our national security, our safety, and our very way of life," writes journalist Arkin (American Coup: How a Terrified Government Is Destroying the Constitution, 2013, etc.) in this idiosyncratic survey of the American military's use of drones, from the war in Bosnia to the present day.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 >