Current Affairs Book Reviews (page 8)

THE INVENTION OF RUSSIA by Arkady Ostrovsky
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"An astute, accessible, illuminating navigation of the idea that the 'only consistent feature in Russia's history is its unpredictability.'"
A focused, bracing look at how the control of the media has helped plot the Russian political trajectory from dictatorship and back again. Read full book review >
GRUNT by Mary Roach
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"Battlefield R&D is a topic too fascinating to ruin, so readers who can tolerate the author's relentless flippancy will not regret the experience."
A cannon fires grocery chickens at parked jets, testing ways to protect planes against bird strikes. Readers encountering this esoteric project on the first page will settle back to enjoy another patented scientific romp, this one on battlefield research, by journalist Roach (Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal, 2013, etc.). Read full book review >

TO PROTECT AND SERVE by Norm Stamper
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"A vivid, well-written, vitally important book."
Most of the nation's approximately 18,000 police departments receive scathing criticism from one of their own: an author who began as a San Diego beat cop in 1966 and rose to become a police chief in Seattle. Read full book review >
THE FATE OF GENDER by Frank Browning
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"A timely, thoughtful contribution to a much-debated issue."
A journalist and cultural critic investigates the "shifting terrain of gender." Read full book review >
THE MAXIMUM SECURITY BOOK CLUB by Mikita Brottman
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 7, 2016

"Will not appeal to hard-core law-and-order types, but others will find this a brave and empathetic story of how literature brings light into shadows."
Compassionate account of running a literary reading group among convicts at Maryland's Jessup maximum security prison. Read full book review >

THE PRICE OF PROSPERITY by Todd G. Buchholz
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: June 7, 2016

"A refreshing book that offers an alternative to the failing shibboleths of the day."
How to renew the greatness of rich but potentially failing nations, like the United States. Read full book review >
THE RISE AND FALL OF NATIONS by Ruchir Sharma
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: June 7, 2016

"Evenhanded, measured, sage advice on the global economy."
This efficient, positive guide for the practical observer and investor shows how to choose healthy emerging markets. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"An impassioned, learned plea for the importance of shared values, rather than coldhearted calculations, as the basis of diplomacy."
As Israelis and American Jews drift further apart culturally and politically, the nature of the unique relationship between the two countries is changing. Read full book review >
EXECUTING GRACE by Shane Claiborne
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"In this often moving and unsettling book, Claiborne provides a meaningful contribution to a deeply fraught topic."
Passionate Christian activist Claiborne (The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical, 2006, etc.) uses Scripture and societal statistics in an argument for the abolishment of the death penalty. Read full book review >
ISLAMIC EXCEPTIONALISM by Shadi Hamid
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"Fresh, provocative thinking on the 'Arab problem.'"
Why can't the Islamic world be more secular and liberal like "we" are? Read full book review >
THE INEVITABLE by Kevin Kelly
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: June 7, 2016

"Kelly's arguments ring true, and his enthusiasm is contagious. Readers will enjoy the ride provided they forget that he has disobeyed his warning against assuming that today's trends will continue."
That futurists have a terrible record hasn't discouraged them, and this delightful addition to the genre does not deny that predictions have been wildly off-base. Read full book review >
RATF**KED by David Daley
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 7, 2016

"A chilling intimation of the growing entrenchment of partisan politics."
An alarming study of the GOP's redrawing of the American political map across the country. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jeff Chang
September 20, 2016

In the provocative essays in journalist Jeff Chang’s new book We Gon’ Be Alright, Chang takes an incisive and wide-ranging look at the recent tragedies and widespread protests that have shaken the country. Through deep reporting with key activists and thinkers, personal writing, and cultural criticism, We Gon’ Be Alright links #BlackLivesMatter to #OscarsSoWhite, Ferguson to Washington D.C., the Great Migration to resurgent nativism. Chang explores the rise and fall of the idea of “diversity,” the roots of student protest, changing ideas about Asian Americanness, and the impact of a century of racial separation in housing. “He implores readers to listen, act, and become involved with today’s activists, who offer ‘new ways to see our past and our present,’ ” our reviewer writes in a starred review. “A compelling and intellectually thought-provoking exploration of the quagmire of race relations.” View video >