History Book Reviews (page 3)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A rewarding book with much to offer, including the likely spark of new interest in how singular choices made by both men and nations can reverberate for generations."
The carnage of war, the rise of a dictator and one North Korean defector's life story all come together in this combination of biography, military history and exposé. Read full book review >
ONE NATION UNDER GOD by Kevin K. Kruse
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: April 7, 2015

"In a book for readers from both parties, Kruse ably demonstrates how the simple ornamental mottoes 'under God' and 'In God We Trust,' as well as the fight to define America as Christian, were parts of a clever business plan."
Kruse (History/Princeton Univ.; White Flight: Atlanta and the Making of Modern Conservatism, 2007, etc.) explains the links between capitalism and Christianity.Read full book review >

MOTHERLAND by Rita Goldberg
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"Goldberg writes eloquently of the 'volcanic pressures' that shaped her family's story and continue to haunt her own."
A daughter revisits her mother's harrowing past. Read full book review >
DEMOCRACY IN THE DARK by Frederick A.O. Schwarz, Jr.
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 7, 2015

"A thorough, if sometimes discursive and loosely organized, presentation of a complex problem that is unfortunately lacking specific suggestions for solutions beyond a call for a general change in attitudes."
An exploration of the growth of American government secrecy. Read full book review >
KING JOHN by Stephen Church
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"Church sticks close to the evidence, almost all government records and surviving chronicles devoted to the deeds of great men. The result is not a page-turner but an insightful, likely definitive, biography."
Reigning from 1199 to 1216, King John's villainy remains a mainstay of popular media. Church (Medieval History/Univ. of East Anglia; The Household Knights of King John, 1999) does not downplay his defects in this scholarly but readable biography.Read full book review >

THE GREAT PARADE by Peter Filichia
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: April 7, 2015

"To call Filichia a devotee of Broadway is an understatement; this book will interest only die-hard fans like himself."
An exuberant look at one year on Broadway. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"A nail-biting account of one man's quiet heroism in the face of impossible odds."
Memoir of a bank manager's unlikely role in the evacuation of South Vietnamese from war-torn mid-1970s Saigon. Read full book review >
THE PRIME OF LIFE by Steven Mintz
HISTORY
Released: April 7, 2015

"A thoughtful and strangely encouraging tour of an often difficult life stage."
Mintz (History/Univ. of Texas; Huck's Raft: A History of American Childhood, 2004, etc.) puts into historical perspective the changes and continuities that have marked adulthood over, principally, the last 200 years.Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: April 7, 2015

"A pointed, relentless chronicle of a despicable part of past American foreign policy."
Scathing examination of American colonial policy in Puerto Rico, culminating in the violent, brief revolution of 1950 and its brutal suppression. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: April 7, 2015

"A superb chronicle, long—but no longer than needed—and detailed, that sheds light on how the war on terror is being waged today."
A stirring history of that bad time, 45-odd years ago, when we didn't need a weatherman to know which way the wind was blowing, though we knew it was loud. Read full book review >
MY JOURNEY WITH MAYA by Tavis Smiley
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 7, 2015

"Readers might feel regret for not having the privilege of meeting Angelou personally, but Smiley has faithfully re-created both her voice's 'haunting beauty and lilting musicality' and the experience of receiving her transformative wisdom, humor, and compassion."
Veteran talk show host Smiley (Death of a King: The Real Story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s Final Year, 2014, etc.) chronicles his relationship with Maya Angelou (1928-2014), his intellectual and spiritual guide.Read full book review >
THE RESIDENCE by Kate Andersen Brower
HISTORY
Released: April 7, 2015

"A work of great historical interest that is also quite entertaining."
Anecdotes both touching and hilarious about living and working in the White House, "the country's most potent and enduring symbol of the presidency." Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Fatima Bhutto
April 14, 2015

Set during the American invasion of Afghanistan, Fatima Bhutto’s debut novel The Shadow of the Crescent Moon begins and ends one rain-swept Friday morning in Mir Ali, a small town in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas close to the Afghan border. Three brothers meet for breakfast. Soon after, the eldest, Aman Erum, recently returned from America, hails a taxi to the local mosque. Sikandar, a doctor, drives to the hospital where he works, but must first stop to collect his troubled wife, who has not joined the family that morning. No one knows where Mina goes these days. But when, later in the morning, the two are taken hostage by members of the Taliban, Mina will prove to be stronger than anyone could have imagined. Our reviewer writes that The Shadow of the Crescent Moon is “a timely, earnest portrait of a family torn apart by the machinations of other people’s war games and desperately trying to survive.” View video >