Current Affairs Book Reviews

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"Well-written and superbly reported."
An absorbing account of the clash between environmentalists and oyster farmers in the coastal towns north of San Francisco. Read full book review >
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"A hackle-raising book about nature and human nature, venality and justice, and how disasters—before, during, and after—sharply mirror society."
How the most significant deleterious factor in natural disasters may be the human element. Read full book review >

BLUE by Joe Domanick
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 11, 2015

"Sprawling, engrossing, and highly relevant to the ongoing controversies about policing post-Ferguson, which Domanick addresses in an epilogue."
An incisive examination of American policing, using a tumultuous two decades in Los Angeles as a lens. Read full book review >
GIVE US THE BALLOT by Ari Berman
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Aug. 4, 2015

"Not just a compelling history, but a cry for help in the recurring struggle to gain what is supposed to be an inalienable right."
An incisive look at the many issues surrounding the right to vote. Read full book review >
ZEROZEROZERO by Roberto Saviano
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: July 14, 2015

"Saviano says he can no longer look at a beach or a map without seeing cocaine, and many will share that view after reading this dark, relentless, hyperreal report."
An inside account of the international cocaine trade. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 14, 2015

"A comprehensive, intelligent look at the evolving world of spies."
Investigative journalist Grey (Ghost Plane: The True Story of the CIA Torture Program, 2006) has his finger on the pulse of all things espionage. While explaining the changes in the spying world since the end of the Cold War, he delves deeply into the strengths and weaknesses of the industry and discloses previously unknown events.Read full book review >
BETWEEN THE WORLD AND ME by Ta-Nehisi Coates
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 8, 2015

"This moving, potent testament might have been titled 'Black Lives Matter.' Or: 'An American Tragedy.'"
The powerful story of a father's past and a son's future. Read full book review >
I, MIGRANT by Sami Shah
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: July 1, 2015

"Humor at its most vigorous and unsparing."
A Pakistani-born comic's account of how he sought salvation in stand-up comedy and then found a new home in Australia. Read full book review >
THE HILLARY DOCTRINE by Valerie M. Hudson
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 30, 2015

"A sound study that carries an urgent message."
A compelling argument for women's rights. Read full book review >
TERRORISTS AT THE TABLE by Jonathan Powell
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 30, 2015

"Powell's urgent, reasoned, and impassioned argument for negotiation has the potential to contribute significantly to public debate."
A road map for the fraught, fragile road to possible peace with terrorist organizations. Read full book review >
PUTINISM by Walter Laqueur
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 30, 2015

"An erudite and unsettling but convincing argument that the new Russia is a dictatorship 'approved by the majority as long as the going is good,' and if Putin were to vanish today, his successor would make few changes."
Relief at the end of the Cold War lasted barely a decade before observers began wondering if it was returning, this time under a pugnacious, quasi-Stalin: Vladimir Putin. Read full book review >
ALLY by Michael B. Oren
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 23, 2015

"Even before its publication, Oren's book has been attacked, based on culls of provocative pieces. Readers would do well to attend to the entire text of this fluent, important political memoir."
The former Israeli ambassador to the United States balances his personal story with his ambassadorial history. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Vanessa Diffenbaugh
September 1, 2015

Vanessa Diffenbaugh is the New York Timesbestselling author of The Language of Flowers; her new novel, We Never Asked for Wings, is about young love, hard choices, and hope against all odds. For 14 years, Letty Espinosa has worked three jobs around San Francisco to make ends meet while her mother raised her children—Alex, now 15, and Luna, six—in their tiny apartment on a forgotten spit of wetlands near the bay. But now Letty’s parents are returning to Mexico, and Letty must step up and become a mother for the first time in her life. “Diffenbaugh’s latest confirms her gift for creating shrewd, sympathetic charmers,” our reviewer writes. View video >