Current Affairs Book Reviews

RENDEZVOUS WITH OBLIVION by Thomas Frank
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: June 19, 2018

"Flaws aside, the book is worth perusing, primarily for its keen analysis of why the Democrats have come up short in recent election cycles. The party's powers that be would be wise to read up."
A liberal commentator offers his scathing take on contemporary American politics and culture. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 19, 2018

"A memoir that would have radiated greater power as a long-form magazine article."
Still in his early 20s, Wood chronicles his arduous upbringing as a black male, including his 15 minutes of fame (so far) while a college student. Read full book review >

Released: June 19, 2018

"A solid academic study offering scant hope for the future."
Copious survey research and statistical analysis about why the divide between Republican and Democratic voters is more contentious than ever and how that affects not only the presidency and Congress, but also state and local elections. Read full book review >
YES WE (STILL) CAN by Dan Pfeiffer
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 19, 2018

"A nostalgic look back and hopeful look forward."
Another Barack Obama staffer reveals his White House experiences. Read full book review >
Released: June 19, 2018

"An important contribution to the literature of environmental activism—and environmental racism."
"There are lots of villains in this story": An Iraqi immigrant and pediatrician recounts the epidemiological sleuthing that uncovered the lead crisis in the drinking water of Flint, Michigan. Read full book review >

BORN TRUMP by Emily Jane Fox
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 19, 2018

"High-level gossip of a kind, but a well-sourced, train wreck-fascinating look at the makings of Clan Trump, 'so uniquely suited for the second decade of the twenty-first century and its fame-obsessed, money-hungry, voracious twenty-four-hour cycle of a culture.'"
"Don't. Trust. Anyone. Ever."—X-ray meets psychoanalysis and balance sheet in this sharp-edged look at the workings of America's most dysfunctional gang. Read full book review >
TENEMENTAL by Vikki Warner
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 12, 2018

"Refreshingly original reading."
An acquisitions editor and freelance writer tells the story of how she became the owner and landlady of a century-old New England tenement home. Read full book review >
GIGGED by Sarah Kessler
Released: June 12, 2018

"A fair-minded analysis of the ever morphing worldwide labor force—an early entry in burgeoning popular literature on the gig economy."
An examination of how job environment models and opportunities have evolved, mainly through the success of Uber and other gig-economy stalwarts. Read full book review >
Released: June 12, 2018

"A vigorous study of how school reform requires vigilance, collaboration, and a capacious definition of true learning."
Corporate reformers undermine public education. Read full book review >
AMITY AND PROSPERITY by Eliza Griswold
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 12, 2018

"A solid addition to the burgeoning literature on the social and health-related effects of fracking."
Griswold (The Tenth Parallel: Dispatches from the Fault Line Between Christianity and Islam, 2010, etc.) immerses herself with a few Pennsylvania families in rural areas near Pittsburgh to chronicle their life-threatening battles against the fracking industry. Read full book review >
HAS THE GAY MOVEMENT FAILED? by Martin Duberman
Released: June 8, 2018

"A relevant, fiery, and dizzying treatise certain to provoke debate and discussion."
A provocative report on the progress of LGBTQ rights. Read full book review >
Released: June 5, 2018

"A bright, informative take on an industry in turmoil."
How technological change has "convulsed" the advertising industry. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >