History Book Reviews (page 12)

TRAGIC ENCOUNTER by Page Smith
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"As this abundantly detailed history shows, no one evades blame for the bloody past."
Rejecting an idealized version of American tribal life, a historian tells a complex story. Read full book review >
THE GHOSTS OF K2 by Mick Conefrey
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"Most of us will never experience K2. Conefrey leaves readers with both tremendous admiration for and an appreciation of the consequences for those who succeed in an adventure so physically, mentally, and emotionally taxing."
Chronicling the superhuman efforts to climb, though never conquer, the "Savage Mountain." Read full book review >

BLACK DRAGON RIVER by Dominic Ziegler
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"Rich in history but short on personal reflection, this book is more for Asian history buffs than fans of travel literature. "
A journalist's account of his travels along the Amur, a spectacular but largely uncelebrated river on the border between Russia and China. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"For the Art Bell addict in the audience. Risible and sure to sell."
Asteroids melted the poles! Baalbek was erected by "ancient and unknowable minds"! Everything we know is wrong! Read full book review >
THE GENERALS by Winston Groom
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"Military history that reads like a novel, full of great stories and vivid scenes."
Interwoven biographies of three of the great American military leaders of the 20th century. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"While more historical context would be useful, this is a provocative work of dogged investigative research."
An investigative report of the current pope's "revolution" to reform Vatican finances. Read full book review >
DESTINY AND POWER by Jon Meacham
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 10, 2015

"A revealing biography that should serve as the starting point for future evaluations of the 41st president."
An admiring life of the president who navigated the end game of the Cold War and stood up to Saddam Hussein. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 9, 2015

"Ably captures the antic spirit of the New Yorker's first heyday."
A fresh view of the much-chronicled magazine, focused on the three writers/editors who, with founder Harold Ross, shaped its sophisticated stance in the years between the world wars. Read full book review >
S.P.Q.R. by Mary Beard
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 9, 2015

"Beard's enthusiasm for her subject is infectious and is well-reflected in her clever, thoroughly enjoyable style of writing. Lovers of Roman history will revel in this work, and new students will quickly become devotees."
The acclaimed classicist delivers a massive history of ancient Rome, which "continues to underpin Western culture and politics, what we write and how we see the world, and our place in it." Read full book review >
CURVOLOGY by David Bainbridge
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: Nov. 7, 2015

"An articulate yet debatable and uneven survey of the endlessly beguiling female form."
The biology, culture, and vanities perennially orbiting the female body. Read full book review >
THE WASHINGTONS by Flora Fraser
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 5, 2015

"A difficult task crowned with mixed success."
English biographer Fraser (Pauline Bonaparte: Venus of Empire, 2009, etc.) returns with a portrayal of the relationship of America's first couple.Read full book review >
LADY BIRD AND LYNDON by Betty Boyd Caroli
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 3, 2015

"Well done. An engaging dual biography of a most intriguing power couple."
A touching, sympathetic portrait of a successful marriage despite the agony and the stress, emphasizing Lady Bird Johnson's spectacular inner grit. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >