History Book Reviews (page 2)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"The fascinating story of a figure who deserves to be much better known."
Seyler (Emerita, English/Northern Virginia Community Coll.) delivers a biography of William Bankes (1786-1855), one of the first Europeans to document the ruins of ancient Egypt. Read full book review >
UNIVERSAL MAN by Richard Davenport-Hines
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"An admiring and nuanced book filled with insights into this scholar and man of action in all his complexity."
An unconventional biography of the brilliant economist who shaped British public life in the 20th century. Read full book review >

WATERLOO by Paul O'Keeffe
HISTORY
Released: May 12, 2015

"O'Keeffe offers no revelations for Waterloo buffs, but his book is a highly readable, richly anecdotal retelling of the battle's devastating results."
The story of the physical aftermath of the Battle of Waterloo, where 200,000 men fought intensely for 10 hours on a bloody battlefield of 5 square miles, leaving more than 40,000 bodies piled in heaps and forcing Napoleon's abdication as emperor of France. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: May 12, 2015

"An inspiring illumination of a hero who deserves recognition."
Ureneck (Journalism/Boston Univ.; Cabin: Two Brothers, a Dream and Five Acres in Maine, 2011, etc.) brings to light the miracles of a little-known hero.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"A methodical opus comprising intensive memoir and inquisitive investigation."
An exacting inquiry into Shakespeare's First Folio and the art of extreme book collecting, demonstrated by the life of a pathological bibliophile. Read full book review >

FREEDOM OF SPEECH by David K. Shipler
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: May 12, 2015

"Good stories, great interviews, and a potent plea on behalf of vigilant listening."
A Pulitzer Prize winner surveys the American cultural and political landscape and asks if "the freedom to hear" remains intact. Read full book review >
THE DAEMON KNOWS by Harold Bloom
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"As always, Bloom conveys the intimate, urgent, compelling sense of why it matters that we read these canonical authors."
Elegiac, gracious literary ponderings that group and compare 12 giants of American literature. Read full book review >
BOURBON EMPIRE by Reid Mitenbuler
FOOD & COOKING
Released: May 12, 2015

"An illuminating, well-paced narrative that will interest students and imbibers of the wee drap, American-style."
"America was astonishingly drunk." So concluded just about every visitor to these shores in the early days of the republic. Read full book review >
33 DAYS by Léon Werth
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"An invaluable document of history as well as a riveting literary narrative, spirited out of France by Saint-Exupéry yet somehow 'lost.'"
An extraordinary account of a French couple's fleeing of Paris just in front of the Germans in June 1940, followed by a despairing stint among some eagerly appeasing villagers. Read full book review >
BORN BAD by James Boyce
HISTORY
Released: May 12, 2015

"Boyce successfully illustrates the ability of original sin to dominate Western culture for nearly two millennia."
Intriguing study of how the Christian concept of original sin weaves its way through Western history. Read full book review >
REAGAN by H.W. Brands
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 12, 2015

"An exemplary work of history that should bring Reagan a touch more respect in some regards but that removes the halo at the same time."
Monumental life of the president whom some worship and some despise—with Brands (History/Univ. of Texas; The Man Who Saved the Union: Ulysses Grant in War and Peace, 2012, etc.) providing plenty of justification for both reactions.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 11, 2015

"A solid piece of research that reveals both the strengths and weaknesses of a now-forgotten man who loved a good story and could put a comic spin on important social issues."
A warts-and-all portrait of Harry Golden (1903-1981), founder of the North Carolina newspaper Carolina Israelite.Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer
authors of OFF THE PAGE
May 19, 2015

Meet Oliver, a prince literally taken from the pages of a fairy tale and transported into the real world. Meet Delilah, the girl who wished Oliver into being. In bestseller Jodi Picoult and her daughter Samantha van Leer’s new young adult novel, Off the Page, it’s a miracle that seems perfect at first—but there are complications. To exist in Delilah’s world, Oliver must take the place of a regular boy. Enter Edgar, who agrees to play Oliver’s role in the pages of Delilah’s favorite book. But just when it seems that the plan will work, everything gets turned upside down. We talk to the mother-daughter team on Kirkus TV. View video >