History Book Reviews (page 2)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 5, 2017

"Many readers will agree that we are currently living in 'demented times,' and Sigmund adeptly lays out a history that has great relevance for today."
The course of Western philosophy was profoundly altered by the work of a small band of Vienna intellectuals a century ago. Sigmund (Emeritus, Mathematics/Univ. of Vienna; Games of Life: Explorations in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, 2017, etc.) tells their story. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 5, 2017

"A lively, perceptive refresher course on the politics of pot."
A comprehensive history of marijuana legalization in America. Read full book review >

DIVERSIFYING DIPLOMACY by Harriet Lee Elam-Thomas
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"An informative, behind-the-scenes look at one black woman's rise through the ranks of the Foreign Service when few others like her were serving as diplomats."
How a young black woman from Boston rose to a long, distinguished career in foreign service. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"Though the author sets aside 'Boko Haram's treatment of women' due to 'reasons of space,' he offers a highly useful, timely, illuminating work about a little-understood terrorist group."
A diagnostic study of the ultraconservative "mobile jihadist gang" from Nigeria that has taken a violent toll on government and civilians alike. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"Despite flaws, this is an incisive critique of American policy from the standpoint of an earlier era but with troubling implications in the unlikely event that it actually gains traction in Washington, D.C."
A call for the United States to return to its traditional foreign policy based on "neutrality, non-intervention, and non-entanglement." Read full book review >

A VILLAGE WITH MY NAME by Scott  Tong
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"A solid exploration of China past and present in which the author climbs 'a punishing mountain of history with [his] intergenerational team.'"
In his first book, Marketplace correspondent Tong offers a unique look into the lives of his Chinese relatives since the communist takeover in 1949. Read full book review >
1917 by Arthur Herman
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 28, 2017

"Mixing both real events and a few moments of speculation, a fine account of a climacteric year."
Dual biography of two men who stand in this account as avatars of worldwide change in a critical historical moment. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 22, 2017

"On the dry side but with provocative suggestions for how to revive democratic practices through citizen action and institutional reform alike."
Gridlock, inaction, inequality: is it any wonder that democracy seems an endangered species in the U.S. and elsewhere? Read full book review >
PRAIRIE FIRES by Caroline Fraser
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"A vivid portrait of frontier life and one of its most ardent celebrants."
A sensitive biography of the author of Little House on the Prairie. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"Maddox's investigation lacks the dazzling heft of John McPhee's Annals of the Former World (1998), but it makes for a gentle introduction to early modern natural history, one of the last eras in which a gentleman (or gentlewoman) scholar might ever hope to have a solid grasp of every branch of science."
The word "scientist" is Georgian, but the scientific habit of mind is Victorian—and quite British, as this popular history ably shows. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"A sturdy but narrowly focused tale of American history."
A family's history reveals the roots of America's "capitalist ethos." Read full book review >
RAMP HOLLOW by Steven Stoll
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"Which is better, cornfields or clean coal? Stoll's sharp book complicates our understanding of a much-misunderstood, much-maligned region that deserves better than it has received."
A searching economic and political history of a dispossessed, impoverished Appalachia that progress has long eluded. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >