Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 5)

BLOOD YEAR by David Kilcullen
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 29, 2016

"Direct, insightful, and frightening, this book will prepare readers to see through the misguided, simplistic solutions to the problems of Middle Eastern policy and Islamic terror so common in this election year."
A "mid-level player in some of the key events of the past decade" delivers a dispassionate, discouraging analysis of how the Western counterterrorism effort has gone so terribly wrong. Read full book review >
THE FIGHT TO VOTE by Michael Waldman
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 23, 2016

"A timely contribution to the discussion of a crucial issue."
A history of the right to vote in America. Read full book review >

SMALL DATA by Martin Lindstrom
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Feb. 23, 2016

"Lindstrom's uncanny ability to detect and decipher seemingly unrelated clues will inspire reporters and detectives as well as companies looking for ways to develop new products and ideas."
A leading marketing guru recounts his firsthand experiences investigating the lives of consumers to develop global branding strategies. Read full book review >
AMERICAN GIRLS by Nancy Jo Sales
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 23, 2016

"For parents with young daughters, this book is an ice-cold, important wake-up call."
What happens to teenage girls when their social lives play out online? Read full book review >
PLAYING TO THE EDGE by Michael V. Hayden
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 23, 2016

"For readers of all political and ideological persuasions with even slightly open minds, Hayden is a worthy guide to a secretive realm."
The former director of the National Security Agency and the CIA unsurprisingly defends espionage as vital to American safety in a violent world, but he spices the conversation with sharp portraits of politicians, military commanders, rulers of other nations, and sometimes himself. Read full book review >

AND THEN ALL HELL BROKE LOOSE by Richard Engel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 19, 2016

"An intriguing journalistic memoir built around a lucid, alarming overview of where the Middle East has been and where it is heading."
A deft personal account of a career spent reporting from the Middle East, witnessing the evaporation of peace and stability. Read full book review >
THE ROAD TAKEN by Henry Petroski
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 16, 2016

"Anyone with an interest in the way things work will want this book—and will doubtless emerge as a fan of the ever curious author."
Noted engineer and writer Petroski (Civil Engineering/Duke Univ.; To Forgive Design: Understanding Failure, 2012, etc.) gives readers a characteristically eye-opening look at America's infrastructure.Read full book review >
INCARCERATION NATIONS by Baz Dreisinger
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"An eye-opening, damning indictment of the American prison system and the way its sins reverberate around the globe."
A writer and social activist chronicles her visits to prisons around the globe to gain insight into what works and doesn't work. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"A usefully organized, concise history of social movements that will appeal to newer generations of activists."
Optimistic overview of the recent surge in politically directed, nonviolent mass advocacy movements, focused on historical examples and the tactical future. Read full book review >
THE GHOST WARRIORS by Samuel M. Katz
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"A detailed book that is refreshingly full of sound research rather than polemic."
An action-packed, nondidactic examination of how Israel's special operation units rose to the challenge of the Palestinian intifada. Read full book review >
UNTANGLED by Lisa Damour
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"Expert information and counsel on helping parents raise well-rounded girls."
The director of the Laurel School's Center for Research on Girls offers parents concrete advice on how to help their teenage daughters navigate the often tumultuous teenage years. Read full book review >
NEMESIS by Misha Glenny
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 9, 2016

"Glenny does an admirable investigative job, delving deeply into the complicated causes and effects of Rio's drug trafficking."
A page-turning chronicle of the life and career of a favela don illustrates the larger challenges of a deeply impoverished, class-ridden Brazilian society.Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Fernanda Santos
author of THE FIRE LINE
May 17, 2016

When a bolt of lightning ignited a hilltop in the sleepy town of Yarnell, Arizona, in June 2013, setting off a blaze that would grow into one of the deadliest fires in American history, the 20 men who made up the Granite Mountain Hotshots sprang into action. New York Times writer Fernanda Santos’ debut book The Fire Line is the story of the fire and the Hotshots’ attempts to extinguish it. An elite crew trained to combat the most challenging wildfires, the Hotshots were a ragtag family, crisscrossing the American West and wherever else the fires took them. There's Eric Marsh, their devoted and demanding superintendent who turned his own personal demons into lessons he used to mold, train and guide his crew; Jesse Steed, their captain, a former Marine, a beast on the fire line and a family man who wasn’t afraid to say “I love you” to the firemen he led; Andrew Ashcraft, a team leader still in his 20s who struggled to balance his love for his beautiful wife and four children and his passion for fighting wildfires. We see this band of brothers at work, at play and at home, until a fire that burned in their own backyards leads to a national tragedy. View video >