Essays & Anthologies Book Reviews

THE SNOWDEN READER by David P. Fidler
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 24, 2015

"An indispensable resource for understanding the Snowden leaks."
An intense examination of whistleblower Edward Snowden that successfully wades through both partisan rhetoric and ideological constraints. Read full book review >
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 22, 2015

"A clever, broad collection of short, definitive remarks about life, love, and social phenomena."
A collection of short sayings on a variety of topics, from intelligence and politics to wealth and happiness. Read full book review >

DREAMS OF EARTH AND SKY by Freeman Dyson
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 21, 2015

"Readers who enjoyed the first volume of reviews will be pleased with this follow-up, and new readers will be delighted by the fascinating insider's view of the scientific community and its intersection with the political establishment."
A collection of reviews and essays first published in the New York Review of Books, from Dyson (The Scientist as Rebel, 2006 etc.), a celebrated elder statesman of modern science. Read full book review >
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 21, 2015

"Candid snapshots of some truly bad days in the bleak annals of civilization."
This potpourri of pop history presents tales of bad calls and unanswered calls, of mishaps, mayhem, murder and a few innocent mistakes. Read full book review >
LENS OF WAR by J. Matthew Gallman
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 15, 2015

"A brilliant starting point for truly understanding the Civil War. As the authors point out, there is still much to explore."
A pictorial guide to the changes in our historical views of the Civil War, curated by Gallman (History/Univ. of Florida; Northerners at War, 2010, etc.) and Gallagher (History/Univ. of Virginia; The Union War, 2012, etc.).Read full book review >

FIRST LADIES by Susan Swain
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 14, 2015

"Though presented in a stilted fashion, all the portraits are rendered with sympathy and detail."
Selections from the popular yearlong C-SPAN series exploring the lives of the first ladies, each offering conversational, somewhat truncated viewpoints by various historians. Read full book review >
TWO by Ann Patchett
edited by Ann Patchett, photographed by Melissa Ann Pinney
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 14, 2015

"A quietly ambitious multimedia production that doesn't quite live up to its potential."
Salt-of-the-earth collection of photos paired with loosely related essays by contemporary literary luminaries. Read full book review >
THE CARTOON INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY by Michael F. Patton
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 14, 2015

"A fun, clear and clever introduction to the rich history of philosophy in the Western world."
An obscure, pre-Socratic Greek philosopher takes readers down the long river of philosophy, explaining movements, theories, breakthroughs and ethics with the help of a few special guest stars. Read full book review >
VERY GOOD LIVES by J.K. Rowling
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 14, 2015

"That second matter is a point that could stand elaboration. On the strength of this sharp, inspirational piece, we hope that Rowling will add a book of essays to her CV."
Harry Potter's creator faces a crowd of uber-Muggles—the graduating class of Harvard University—whom she enjoins to stretch their minds and be awesome. Read full book review >
EVERY FATHER'S DAUGHTER by Margaret McMullan
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 9, 2015

"Consistently elucidating portraits."
A collection of essays on the father-daughter dynamic. Read full book review >
AFTER THE TALL TIMBER by Renata Adler
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 7, 2015

"Although this volume amply reveals the author's attention to language and commitment to politically engaged journalism, many pieces seem dated, and a few are tediously long."
A collection of articles by an outspoken writer. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A snappy, potty-mouthed guidebook for stressed-out mommies."
A tongue-in-cheek guide to surviving modern motherhood. Read full book review >

Upcoming Kirkus Interview

April 28, 2015
Mona Eltahawy

In her debut book, Headscarves and Hymens: Why the Middle East Needs a Sexual Revolution, Egyptian-American journalist and commentator Mona Eltahawy mounts an angry indictment of the treatment of women throughout the Arab world. Born in Egypt, she spent her childhood in London, moving with her family to Saudi Arabia when she was 15. Her shock was immediate and visceral: “It felt as though we’d moved to another planet whose inhabitants fervently wished women did not exist,” she recalls. Women could not travel, work or even go to a doctor’s appointment without male approval. We talk to Eltahawy this week on Kirkus TV about her arresting new book.