Essays & Anthologies Book Reviews

SELFISH, SHALLOW, AND SELF-ABSORBED by Meghan Daum
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 1, 2015

"A courageous defense of childlessness and a necessary corrective to the Cult of Mommy, but Daum's collection could have benefitted from a more diverse pool of contributors and a fuller consideration of contrary opinions."
Daum (The Unspeakable: And Other Subjects of Discussion, 2014, etc.) compiles essays from a group of noted writers—including Kate Christensen, Geoff Dyer and Lionel Shriver—holding forth on the topic of deliberate childlessness.Read full book review >
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 1, 2015

"Not all the speeches break new ground, but they are uplifting in their overarching focus: There is important work to be done in this world, regardless of the large and small events of our lives."
A collection of recent graduation speeches meant to inspire, edited by New Press education editor Grove and recent Harvard grad Ostrer. Read full book review >

QUEEN OF THE FALL by Sonja Livingston
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 1, 2015

"Livingston overcomes the collection's inconsistencies with her dexterity in addressing an impressive range of questions regarding humanity, femininity, and growing up in America."
Livingston (MFA Program/Univ. of Memphis; Ghostbread, 2009) weaves her own memories throughout ruminations on famous mythical goddesses and pop-culture icons to explore what becoming a woman means both for her—as a Roman Catholic girl coming of age in the late 1980s—and, more broadly, within the context of the real and fictitious women who surround her.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 >

LISTEN TO YOUR MOTHER by Ann Imig
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 7, 2015

"The essays are short, which enables the book to cover a lot of ground, but they also pack a strong emotional punch—and they're almost certain to leave any mother feeling less alone."
A collection of personal essays about the importance of connecting mothers to each other for support. Read full book review >
THE LIFE OF IMAGES by Charles Simic
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: April 7, 2015

"Lucid, lyrical, educative and engaging virtually all areas of the brain."
A Pulitzer Prize-winning poet, essayist and translator presents a motley, intriguing collection of nonfiction pieces from the past 30 years. 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 >
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 >
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 >
Kirkus Interview
Frank Bruni
March 31, 2015

Over the last few decades, Americans have turned college admissions into a terrifying and occasionally devastating process, preceded by test prep, tutors, all sorts of stratagems, all kinds of rankings, and a conviction among too many young people that their futures will be determined and their worth established by which schools say yes and which say no. In Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be, New York Times columnist Frank Bruni explains why, giving students and their parents a new perspective on this brutal, deeply flawed competition and a path out of the anxiety that it provokes. “Written in a lively style but carrying a wallop, this is a book that family and educators cannot afford to overlook as they try to navigate the treacherous waters of college admissions,” our reviewer writes. View video >