Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 66)

Released: Sept. 1, 2008

"A top-flight interpretation of a time, its music and its strange doings—which still look pretty good compared to now."
A fan's lucid notes on a time when the hope or fear, depending on one's viewpoint, of "a violent assault on the established order" occupied minds, megaphones and microphones. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 19, 2008

"A timely, eye-opening historical analysis that provides clarity around the difficult choices the next president faces."
Balanced, panoramic assessment of the Iraq War by former Marine and Reagan administration veteran West (No True Glory, 2005, etc.), who heralds American soldiers as its unsung heroes amid the "fog of Washington." Read full book review >

Released: Aug. 18, 2008

"A sobering reminder of just how deep-seated is the instinct to destroy other people's truths."
Venezuelan historian Báez spent what must have been 12 depressing years assembling this horrific chronicle of the centuries-long assault on human memory. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 13, 2008

"Though sometimes bogged down in legal minutia, quite understandably, Mahler's fluent account of events is essential reading for students of constitutional law—and anyone concerned with civil rights."
Near-exhaustive account of what some Supreme Court watchers consider "the most important decision on presidential power ever." Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 5, 2008

"A brilliantly written, brutally honest memoir."
New York Times reporter Carr bluntly reveals his former life in hell, when he juggled two talents: smoking crack and filing news. Read full book review >

Released: Aug. 1, 2008

"A forceful argument that resurrecting equitable, intelligent government starts with understanding how the present plutocracy came about."
A refreshingly no-holds-barred exegesis on the naked cynicism of conservatism in America by The Baffler founder and political observer Frank (What's the Matter with Kansas?, 2004, etc.). Read full book review >
Released: July 22, 2008

"A persuasive but painful solution for dealing with the mess in the Middle East."
A former supporter of the Iraq invasion, former National Security Council director for Gulf Affairs Pollack (The Persian Puzzle: The Conflict Between Iran and America, 2004, etc.) now admits it was a terrible idea. Yet America must not only remain involved in the Middle East, he declares, it must bring harmony to that volatile region. Read full book review >
Released: July 8, 2008

"A masterly narrative that captures the religious fervor, brutality and mayhem of this intensive contest for the 'center of the world.'"
Exciting re-creation of the epic mid-16th-century struggle between the encroaching Ottoman Empire and the beleaguered Christian Europeans. Read full book review >
Released: July 1, 2008

"A gutsy and disturbing exposé of U.S. civilian and military personnel out of control."
Based on what she learned as a translator at the notorious detention center, the American-born daughter of Afghan immigrants indicts the Bush administration's treatment of prisoners there. Read full book review >
Released: June 23, 2008

"So levelheaded and full of good sense, it's almost certain to be ignored."
Brookings Institution fellow and Atlantic Monthly contributing editor Wittes (Confirmation Wars: Preserving Independent Courts in Angry Times, 2006, etc.) argues for a new legal framework for combating the terror war. Read full book review >
Released: June 10, 2008

"Gill is that rare critic who actually has something relevant and profound to say about every place he visits. Highly recommended."
Vanity Fair contributing editor Gill (The Angry Island: Hunting the English, 2007, etc.) returns with another stellar collection of dispatches from across the globe. Read full book review >
Released: June 1, 2008

"Hearing today's leaders proclaim deep religious convictions, especially around election time, readers may feel that they don't make Christians like they used to."
Richly satisfying biography of a great humanitarian who was also thoroughly likable. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jennifer Keishin Armstrong
author of SEINFELDIA
August 22, 2016

Jennifer Keishin Armstrong’s new bestseller Seinfeldia is the hilarious behind-the-scenes story of two guys who went out for coffee and dreamed up Seinfeld —the cultural sensation that changed television and bled into the real world. Comedians Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld never thought anyone would watch their silly little sitcom about a New York comedian sitting around talking to his friends. NBC executives didn’t think anyone would watch either, but they bought it anyway, hiding it away in the TV dead zone of summer. But against all odds, viewers began to watch, first a few and then many, until nine years later nearly 40 million Americans were tuning in weekly. In Seinfeldia, TV historian and entertainment writer Armstrong celebrates the creators and fans of this American television phenomenon, bringing readers behind-the-scenes of the show while it was on the air and into the world of devotees for whom it never stopped being relevant, a world where the Soup Nazi still spends his days saying “No soup for you!” “Armstrong’s intimate, breezy history is full of gossipy details, show trivia, and insights into how famous episodes came to be,” our reviewer writes. “Perfect for Seinfeldians and newcomers alike.” View video >