History Book Reviews (page 3)

Released: Feb. 13, 2018

"For those inclined to believe that the end is not nigh and who would like to keep up with recent science, this book is a…well, not a godsend, but a gift all the same."
The bomb? The plague? Trump? Not to worry; things are getting better. So writes eternal optimist Pinker (Psychology/Harvard Univ.; The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined, 2011, etc.). Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"In this era of fake news, Coll remains above it all, this time delivering an impeccably researched history of 'diplomacy at the highest levels of government in Washington, Islamabad, and Kabul.'"
The acclaimed journalist delivers "a second volume" of the history he recounted in the Pulitzer Prize-winning Ghost Wars (2004). Read full book review >

THE AUDACITY OF INEZ BURNS by Stephen G. Bloom
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Bloom rescues an important figure from the dustbin of history. Burns receives the storyteller she deserves and can now occupy her proper place in the intersectional histories of feminism, law, and the San Francisco underworld."
In his latest book, Bloom (Journalism/Univ. of Iowa; Tears of Mermaids: The Secret Story of Pearls, 2009, etc.) chronicles the life and exploits of Inez Burns (1886-1976), a flamboyant, unapologetic libertine who rose to prominence as the most notorious abortionist in California in the first half of the 20th century. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Not merely a book about Guyana, but an impressively rendered story about imperialism in general and cultural imperialism in particular."
An illumination of the interplay of art, culture, politics, race, and history in Guyana, a Caribbean country mostly ignored by the rest of the world but which serves here as a fascinating microcosm for the power of art to inspire change. Read full book review >
BERLIN 1936 by Oliver Hilmes
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Thomas Mann, listening to the Games from exile in Switzerland, knew that Hitler's intent was 'to intimidate, indeed overwhelm the rest of the world.' This mostly illuminating book chronicles those efforts and suggests the horrors to come."
The drama and personal stories behind one of the most famous—and infamous—Olympic Games. Read full book review >

Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"A lucid and entertaining book that is neither literary criticism nor a biography with serious ambitions but mostly a series of essays on science, history, and early-19th-century British society often only distantly related to building Frankenstein's monster."
Examining the science of "a work of fiction that has enthralled, inspired and terrified for two centuries." Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"A wonderful picture of 17th-century England, replete with the excitement of ideas and discoveries and the beginnings of the empire."
A history of the England that Charles II returned to in 1660 when he was restored to the throne. Read full book review >
THE EARTH GAZERS by Christopher Potter
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Despite covering familiar ground, Potter delivers an enthralling account of the golden age of manned space travel that emphasizes the transcendent experiences of everyone involved, and he makes a convincing case that America lost something vital when it ended."
A history of the space program told through the lens of the handful of astronauts who have seen the Earth from space. Read full book review >
STONEHENGE by Francis Pryor
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Pryor's journalistic writing and vast knowledge make this a joy for historians and armchair archaeologists alike."
A renowned archaeologist chronicles the remarkable changes in our knowledge of the builders of Stonehenge and other, equally important and connected henges throughout Britain. Read full book review >
BUILDING THE GREAT SOCIETY by Joshua Zeitz
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"An enlightening look at the political foundations of 20th-century hope."
A behind-the-scenes study of Lyndon Baines Johnson's presidency. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"An expansive, prodigiously researched, and masterfully told history."
A "glittering saga" about the other black Renaissance. Read full book review >
Released: Feb. 6, 2018

"Waste, restoration, and efforts to use a scarce resource wisely: Doyle speaks well to issues that are as pressing today as in the first years of the republic."
A vigorous look at American history through the nation's waterways. 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 >