History Book Reviews (page 938)

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 1, 1994

"On balance, a vivid exercise in narrative that is more ideological than historical."
Using imaginary conversations, NYU professor Cantor (Inventing the Middle Ages, 1991, etc.) attempts to make medieval culture and society relevant for the modern reader. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: March 1, 1994

"Ultimately these journals cohere as great works of portraiture: a picture of one of the century's most toweringly moral artists, suffering at full tide, without a jot of self-pity."
Equal certainly to Eckermann's table talk with Goethe and Boswell's journals about Dr. Johnson, Chukovskaya's indispensable log of her friendship with the great Russian poet Anna Akhmatova— an act of literary and personal fidelity accomplished under the most insanely difficult circumstances—is finally available here in translation, and few books are quite as illuminating both of horror and genius. Read full book review >

SEEDS OF THE SIXTIES by Andrew Jamison
HISTORY
Released: March 1, 1994

"Still, Seeds of the Sixties serves a crucial purpose; hopefully it will lead readers to further investigate the work of the important and interesting figures it examines."
Useful attempt to identify the writers and activists of the 1940's and 50's who most influenced progressive thought in the 60's. Read full book review >
LIVING A POLITICAL LIFE by Madeleine Kunin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 1, 1994

"Compulsory reading for anyone, male or female, who has ever pondered the mysteries of political life. (16 pages of b&w photographs—not seen)"
The triumphs and challenges of the political arena shape an extraordinarily candid, often lyrical, memoir from former Vermont governor and current Deputy US Secretary of Education Kunin. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 28, 1994

"A tellingly detailed account that manages to put Rommel into a human context. (Sixteen pages of b&w photos and 20 helpful maps)"
A judicious appraisal of Germany's best-known WW II soldier, from a retired British general whose published works include a well-regarded 1982 biography of Lord Alanbrook. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 28, 1994

"Revisionist history with a vengeance—and residual values for all the bitterness."
Reproachful, revelatory recollections of a protracted GîtterdÑmmerung from a former aide of the Soviet Union's last emperor. Read full book review >
ESSAYS IN UNDERSTANDING by Hannah Arendt
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 27, 1994

"Largely 'residual reflections,' according to Kohn, these pieces appear to be quaint, irrelevant, and narrowly focused exercises, only faintly foreshadowing the 'bleak pessimism' of the 'terrible century' Arendt was later to dissect."
Compiled, edited, and briefly annotated by Hannah Arendt's longtime assistant Jerome Kohn (Political and Social Science/New School), this first of two projected volumes collecting Arendt's (1906-75) essays, addresses, and reviews up to 1954 contains two previously unpublished essays: "On the Nature of Totalitarianism" (1953) and "The Concern with Politics in Contemporary European Philosophical Thought" (1954). Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 24, 1994

"A triumphant and evocative collection: journalism at its best."
A splendid collection of reports originally from the New Yorker. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 21, 1994

"Wonderful, poignant stories, often alluded to but rarely told, and even more rarely told so well. (B&w photos—16pp)"
The ``brothers' fight'' of Civil War legend and historical clichÇ is grounded in firm fact: not only did the war split many actual families along partisan lines, but a sizeable number of celebrated officers in blue and in gray had been bosom buddies at West Point and subsequently comrades and mess-mates in the prewar Federal army. Read full book review >
RACISM 101 by Nikki Giovanni
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 21, 1994

"Unfortunately, though, without the cutting edge consistently applied, these views of society and culture tend to ramble and reminisce more than drive the point home, leaving a favorable—but less than lasting—impression."
From bestselling poet Giovanni, recently appointed professor of English at Virginia Polytechnic: over two dozen short essays, personal and political, on topics ranging from Spike Lee's Malcolm X to matters of family and friends While working primarily in the public realm by writing about various aspects of American life as she has encountered them in the past few years, Giovanni also leaves room for more intimate ruminations: on moving to Virginia; on the vagaries of teaching poetry; or on the significance of buying a candy-red sports car. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 17, 1994

"Despite the material's innate fascination, readers must look elsewhere for a life grounding Stalin's psychological compulsions persuasively in historical context—for instance to Alan Bullock's massive and authoritative 1992 dual biography, Hitler and Stalin."
An intriguing look at Stalin's regime, marred by pedestrian writing and shallow insights. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 16, 1994

"Challenging and intense—for all serious students of American culture, but probably best for those with some background in the law."
A brief but profound analysis of how the Reagan-Bush right has exploited the law to victimize women, gays, and ethnic minorities. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Andrea Beaty
August 30, 2016

In Andrea Beaty and David Roberts’ new picture book Ada Twist, Scientist is like her classmates, builder Iggy and inventor Rosie: scientist Ada, a character of color, has a boundless imagination and has always been hopelessly curious. Why are there pointy things stuck to a rose? Why are there hairs growing inside your nose? When her house fills with a horrific, toe-curling smell, Ada knows it’s up to her to find the source. Not afraid of failure, she embarks on a fact-finding mission and conducts scientific experiments, all in the name of discovery. But this time, her experiments lead to even more stink and get her into trouble! Inspired by real-life makers such as Ada Lovelace and Marie Curie, Ada Twist, Scientist champions girl power and women scientists, and brings welcome diversity to picture books about girls in science. “Cool and stylish,” our reviewer writes. View video >