Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 6)

REFINERY TOWN by Steve Early
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"A specific tale of governance at the local level that should appeal to labor activists and scholars of urban studies."
In Richmond, California, overlooking scenic San Francisco Bay, is a company town bankrolled by Chevron. A resident reports, in some detail, on his town's fraught governance. Read full book review >
THE ART OF BEING FREE by James Poulos
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"Provocative assertions buried in a confusing presentation."
A journalist expands on Alexis de Tocqueville's cultural critiques of American life. Read full book review >

NO WALL TOO HIGH by Xu Hongci
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"An often harrowing, valuable account for students of daily life in the early years of the period culminating in China's little-documented civil war of the 1970s."
An early victim of Mao Zedong's totalitarian regime is swept up in a time of terror. Read full book review >
HOW AMERICA LOST ITS SECRETS by Edward Jay Epstein
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"A wild and harrowing detective story and impressively evenhanded portrait of a very sticky case."
A nuanced portrait of the government contractor who absconded with top-secret National Security Agency documents in May 2013. Read full book review >
TEARS WE CANNOT STOP by Michael Eric Dyson
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"The readership Dyson addresses may not fully be convinced, but it can hardly remain unmoved by his fiery prose."
The provocateur-scholar returns to the pulpit to deliver a hard-hitting sermon on the racial divide, directed specifically to a white congregation. Read full book review >

THE WEAPON WIZARDS by Yaakov Katz
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 17, 2017

"An enlightening look into one of the less-familiar corners of the modern military world."
Two Israeli journalists look at how their country has become an innovator in battlefield technology. Read full book review >
MODERATES by David S. Brown
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 16, 2017

"While mainly for specialists, this provocative and obviously timely analysis is an important reminder of the role that reason and compromise have played in bridging the gap between political extremes."
The moderate tradition in American politics. Read full book review >
INSANE CLOWN PRESIDENT by Matt Taibbi
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 16, 2017

"A lively set of dispatches that shows how even the harshest skeptic in the pundit class can be blindsided."
Looking back in bemusement and (eventually) anger at the 2016 presidential campaign with Rolling Stone's pugnacious political correspondent. Read full book review >
AMERICAN HOOKUP by Lisa Wade
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 10, 2017

"An eye-opening, conversation-starting examination of sex on the American college campus."
How and why American college students are engaging in nonintimate one-night stands. Read full book review >
A WORLD IN DISARRAY by Richard Haass
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 10, 2017

"A highly learned but sometimes-ponderous survey that will appeal to policy wonks. For most readers, a long-form essay would have sufficed."
A public policy insider mines the nuances of states' sovereignty and legitimacy in an increasingly unstable world. Read full book review >
THE NEW ODYSSEY by Patrick Kingsley
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 10, 2017

"A powerful firsthand account of a crisis that will continue to receive even more attention in the years to come."
Bravely following the refugee crisis from the Middle East to the European Union as it gains volume and urgency. Read full book review >
OUR BODIES, OUR DATA by Adam Tanner
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Jan. 10, 2017

"A thorough report, carefully researched and well-documented, aimed at both general readers and policymakers."
A disturbing look at the threat to privacy created by the lucrative and growing health care data-mining industry. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Brad Parks
author of SAY NOTHING
March 7, 2017

In Brad Parks’ new thriller Say Nothing, judge Scott Sampson doesn’t brag about having a perfect life, but the evidence is clear: a prestigious job. A beloved family. On an ordinary Wednesday afternoon, he is about to pick up his six-year-old twins to go swimming when his wife, Alison, texts him that she’ll get the kids from school instead. It’s not until she gets home later that Scott realizes she doesn’t have the children. And she never sent the text. Then the phone rings, and every parent’s most chilling nightmare begins. A man has stolen Sam and Emma. For Scott and Alison, the kidnapper’s call is only the beginning of a twisting, gut-churning ordeal of blackmail, deceit, and terror; a high-profile trial like none the judge or his wife has ever experienced. Their marriage falters. Suspicions and long-buried jealousies rise to the surface. Fractures appear. Lies are told. “The nerve-shredding never lets up for a minute as Parks picks you up by the scruff of the neck, shakes you vigorously, and repeats over and over again till a climax so harrowing that you’ll be shaking with gratitude that it’s finally over,” our critic writes in a starred review. View video >