History Book Reviews (page 4)

HOTEL FLORIDA by Amanda Vaill
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"War, sex, friendship, betrayal, celebrity, rivalry, jealousy, idealism, foolishness and foppery—all this and more gather in the lobby of Madrid's Hotel Florida."
Vaill (Somewhere: The Life of Jerome Robbins, 2006, etc.) follows a handful of characters (some are celebrities, some not) through the Spanish Civil War. Read full book review >
THE MOST DANGEROUS MAN IN AMERICA by Mark Perry
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 1, 2014

"A majestic overview with an engaging sense of the nuance of character. Thankfully, Perry doesn't become mired in familiar biographical detail."
In a study of quiet authority, Perry spotlights the presumptuous commanding general at the moment of his evolving maturity during the Pacific theater and apotheosis in the Philippines. Read full book review >

AMERICA'S FISCAL CONSTITUTION by Bill White
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: April 1, 2014

"Reading between the lines, White is recommending much more—and therein lies controversy, especially when it comes to military spending. A book that deserves much attention."
Looking to beat up on George W. Bush some more? There's plenty of ammunition in this chronicle of the collapse of federal fiscal discipline during the previous administration. Read full book review >
BOURBON by Dane Huckelbridge
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: April 1, 2014

"A snappy history of the popular spirit's rise and continued ascent."
A mirthful, erudite appreciation of bourbon and its striking history. Read full book review >
THE CRUSADES OF CESAR CHAVEZ by Miriam Pawel
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 1, 2014

"A warts-and-all biography of an important figure."
An exhaustive study of the life and work of iconic labor leader Cesar Chavez (1927-1993). Read full book review >

PRANKSTERS by Kembrew McLeod
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: April 1, 2014

"McLeod's renditions of his own pranks bring sparkle and humor to the serious message of his book."
The story of how mischief-makers hope to change the world one prank at a time. Read full book review >
PEDESTRIANISM by Matthew Algeo
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: April 1, 2014

"An entertaining biography, step by step, of a diversion in the earliest days of today's sports industry."
A lively account of America's first major spectator sport, competitive walking, which attracted thousands in its day. Read full book review >
THE TUPAC AMARU REBELLION by Charles F. Walker
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"A readable, not-too-scholarly story of a significant moment in South American history."
A solid new history of the Peruvian Indian revolutionary lays out the roots of his rebellion and its bitter legacy. Read full book review >
WHY GOVERNMENT FAILS SO OFTEN by Peter H.  Schuck
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 1, 2014

"A substantial analysis of the causes and failures of government functioning."
Schuck (Emeritus, Yale Univ.; Foundations of Administrative Law, 2012, etc.) undertakes "to explain and perhaps to help solve" the myriad failures of government, in which a majority of citizens have little faith or confidence. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"A welcome study that is by turns picturesque and scholarly, startling and accessible."
A demonstration of how the shtetl of Eastern Europe enjoyed an early period of thriving prosperity and cultural diversity. Read full book review >
THE BILL OF THE CENTURY by Clay Risen
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"Well-researched but sometimes tedious."
A journalist's in-depth, behind-the-scenes account of the unsung congressional and White House heroes who helped the Civil Rights Act become the law of the land. Read full book review >
CONGO by David van Reybrouck
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"Though the book is overlong, van Reybrouck makes a good case for the importance of Congo to world history and its ongoing centrality in a time of resurgent economic colonialism, this time on the part of China."
Sprawling portrait of a land that, by Belgian writer van Reybrouck's account, has been at the center of world history as well as a continent. Read full book review >