History Book Reviews (page 5)

LIFE LINCOLN by Allen C. Guelzo
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 14, 2014

"One idea recurs: '[W]e can be better than we have been,' as Steven Spielberg puts it; we can 'be uplifted and galvanized by this suffering man who was a steadfast optimist in the name of freedom and equality.' That sentiment infuses and inspires this stunning portrait."
Commemorating the 150th anniversary of Lincoln's death, LIFE editors have produced an astonishing volume of images and essays. Read full book review >
TINSELTOWN by William J. Mann
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: Oct. 14, 2014

"While searching for a solution to the sensational crime, Mann masterfully captures the zeitgeist of Hollywood in its early days."
Who killed William Desmond Taylor? More than 90 years after the unsolved murder of the renowned director, film historian and biographer Mann (Hello Gorgeous: Becoming Barbra Streisand, 2012, etc.) takes up the cold case. Read full book review >

THE RETURN OF GEORGE WASHINGTON by Edward J. Larson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 7, 2014

"Profound, even affectionate, scholarship infuses every graceful sentence."
Illuminating history of an overlooked period in the life of our first president. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 7, 2014

"Isaacson weaves prodigious research and deftly crafted anecdotes into a vigorous, gripping narrative about the visionaries whose imaginations and zeal continue to transform our lives."
A panoramic history of technological revolution. Read full book review >
EMBATTLED REBEL by James M. McPherson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 7, 2014

"A fair-handed treatment from a towering historian and sterling writer."
A seasoned Civil War historian examines the beleaguered president of the Confederacy. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 7, 2014

"An electrifying, empathetic work of journalism that makes a four-year-old story feel fresh."
The mind-boggling story of 33 Chilean miners trapped 2,000 feet underground for 10 weeks. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 1, 2014

"Systematic, thorough and even hopeful fodder for reform-minded political observers."
In his companion to The Origins of the Political Order, the deeply engaged political scientist offers a compelling historical overview of a useful template for the retooling of institutions in the modern state. Read full book review >
FOUNDERS AS FATHERS by Lorri Glover
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 30, 2014

"Well-written and immensely rewarding, this important book will appeal to both scholars and general readers."
A superb new perspective on America's Founding Fathers. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 30, 2014

"Of a piece with the work of Tracy Kidder, Henry Petroski and other popular explainers of technology and science—geeky without being overly so and literate throughout."
Best-selling author Johnson (Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation, 2010, etc.) continues his explorations of what he calls the "hummingbird effect," unforeseeable chains of influence that change the world. Read full book review >
ON IMMUNITY by Eula Biss
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: Sept. 30, 2014

"Brightly informative, giving readers a sturdy platform from which to conduct their own research and take personal responsibility."
National Book Critics Circle Award winner Biss (Notes from No Man's Land, 2009) investigates the nature of vaccinations, from immunity as myth to the intricate web of the immune system. Read full book review >
THE LAGOON by Armand Marie Leroi
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 25, 2014

"A wide-ranging, delightful tour de force."
Leroi (Evolutionary Development Biology/Imperial Coll. London; Mutants:On the Form, Variety and Errors of the Human Body, 2003) calls on his expertise and his experience as a BBC science presenter to explain why Aristotle's writings on science are still relevant today. Read full book review >
PREDATOR by Richard Whittle
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 16, 2014

"For students of technological history and political wrangling alike, the book is endlessly interesting and full of implication."
They may soon be delivering this book to you, but for now, writes Woodrow Wilson Center global fellow Whittle in this follow-up to his excellent The Dream Machine: The Untold History of the Notorious V-22 Osprey (2010), drones are anything but your friends. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Bill Browder
author of RED NOTICE
March 24, 2015

Bill Browder’s Red Notice is a nonfiction political thriller about an American financier in the Wild East of Russia, the murder of his principled young tax attorney, and his mission to expose the Kremlin’s corruption. In 2007, a group of Russian law enforcement officers raided Browder’s offices in Moscow and stole $230 million of taxes that his fund’s companies had paid to the Russian government. Browder’s attorney Sergei Magnitsky investigated the incident and uncovered a sprawling criminal enterprise. A month after Sergei testified against the officials involved, he was arrested and thrown into pre-trial detention, where he was tortured for a year. On November 16, 2009, he was led to an isolation chamber, handcuffed to a bedrail, and beaten to death by eight guards in full riot gear. “It may be that ‘Russian stories never have happy endings,’ ” our reviewer writes about Red Notice, “but Browder’s account more than compensates by ferociously unmasking Putin’s thugocracy.” View video >