History Book Reviews (page 923)

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 22, 1993

Flagellatory mea culpa from a reformed North Korean terrorist who, in 1987, blew up a South Korean airliner, killing all 115 aboard. Read full book review >
JANE AUSTEN'S THE HISTORY OF ENGLAND by Jane Austen
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 22, 1993

"Still, Mandelbaum's collection has a certain novelty interest and, for manic completists, it no doubt will prove a must."
It's a truism that writers, like musicians, must practice their scales before they take flight. Read full book review >

PRESIDENT KENNEDY by Richard Reeves
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 21, 1993

"Neither Camelot elegy nor scathing revisionism—but the kind of cool, dispassionate narrative that JFK himself might have appreciated."
Behind the scenes in the Kennedy Administration—in well- documented, unusually revealing depth. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 18, 1993

"Full of fascinating, sometimes brilliant, insight into the politics of the area and its impact on those entrusted with US policy."
An analysis of the evolution of US policy toward the Middle East—as well as of the foreign-policy elite that guided it—that goes far deeper than the headlines. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 18, 1993

"Notes from a reluctant sojourner whose trip through the past yielded remarkably few insights worth sharing. (Eighteen photographs)"
A journalist's self-absorbed and ultimately pointless report on his search for the truth about a celebrated forebear who'd disowned him. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 15, 1993

"Clemenceau remains an enigma here but his era comes alive through Dallas's high-flown but lively approach. (Twenty-four pages of b&w illustrations)"
Idiosyncratic but vivid account of the times—and, less successfully, the life—of the great WW I French leader Georges Clemenceau (1841-1929). Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 15, 1993

"Powerful, though, for its two-fold message: that America must do more to educate Latinos (our fastest growing minority), and that freedom of thought belongs to everyone."
A young man's appraisal—Navarrette is only 25 now—of his turbulent years as a Mexican-American undergraduate at one of the nation's most prestigious universities. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 15, 1993

Powerful testimony from 29 German women survivors of the Third Reich that provides not only a stunning portrait of life on the home front but also insights into a society that spawned both Hitler and the Holocaust. Read full book review >
MOLOTOV REMEMBERS by Albert Resis
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 15, 1993

"An important resource for future Soviet studies, Molotov's words also provide a mesmerizing and chilling chronicle of how the Marxist dream mutated into the Soviet nightmare—and of how power, once again, corrupted absolutely."
V.M. Molotov (1890-1986) rose to power with Lenin, serving briefly as the USSR's premier before Stalin's ascent and then as foreign minister during Stalin's reign and afterward. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 15, 1993

"Full of adventure, suspense, and obstacles overcome—an octogenarian version of Thelma and Louise triumphant. (Illustrations)"
Enchanting retelling—and a 1993 Western States Book Award winner—of a tribal legend about two old women, left behind to die, who instead went on to survive and thrive. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 14, 1993

"Military history of a very high order. (Photos and maps—not seen) (First printing of 75,000; first serial to The Washington Post; Main Selection of the History Book Club)"
Exhaustive, albeit consistently absorbing, record of the 42- day Gulf War that offers fresh, often startling, perspectives on the planning and conduct of what the author characterizes as ``a brilliant slaughter.'' Focusing almost entirely on military operations, Pulitzer- winning Washington Post correspondent Atkinson (The Long Gray Line, 1989) provides a chronological account of how the US-led coalition liberated Kuwait. Read full book review >
OUT OF ORDER by Thomas E. Patterson
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 14, 1993

"Provocative prescriptions that draw useful distinctions between good politics and good government. (Charts and tabular material—not seen)"
An arresting and perceptive critique of the media-centric process by which America selects its Presidents. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >