History Book Reviews (page 944)

HISTORY
Released: June 17, 1992

"But Torrey's extremist tract will not help in the ongoing attempt to find the right balance between biology and Freud, nature and nurture."
A shrill, lopsided attack on Freud's theories, those who advanced them in America, and the resulting excesses; from Torrey (Nowhere to Go, The Death of Psychiatry, etc.), a firm believer in the genetic/biological approach to personality and mental illness. Read full book review >
SUMMER MEDITATIONS by Vaclav Havel
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 15, 1992

"Worldly-wise pensÇes from an intellectual who's as comfortable and effective on the hustings as in an ivory tower."
More pieces of Havel's lively, subtle mind. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 10, 1992

"Tucker and Hendrickson write in an easy, cogent style rare among political scientists, but their idealism may overrun their pragmatism in applying to today's nuclear world principles elaborated in a simpler, safer time."
A polemic harshly critical of the Bush Administration's ``New World Order'' for the post-cold-war era. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: June 8, 1992

More than 40 years ago, Madden found documents in an attic trunk tracing his family back to his earliest American ancestors: Mary, most probably an indentured Irish servant; and an unidentified black man. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: June 8, 1992

"A pure pleasure cruise through the Middle Kingdom. (Photos—not seen.)"
More erudite history and eminently readable scholarship from Yale Sinologist Spence (The Search for Modern China, 1990, etc.). Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 6, 1992

"An important chapter in the Civil War, seen through the participants' own graphic and powerful testimony. (Twenty-five maps and 108 b&w illustrations—not seen.)"
This latest in Wheeler's long line of Civil War and WW II ``eyewitness histories'' (On Fields of Fury, 1991, etc.) follows the Union and Confederate forces in the East between September 1862 and May 1863, a time during which Robert E. Lee became renowned as one of the most brilliant commanders ever produced by America. ``Heroes of many defeats, we are not inclined to give gratuitous confidence to anyone,'' wrote a captain in the Federal Army of the Potomac to his mother. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 3, 1992

"A well-written and meticulously researched biography that offers a balanced perspective on its controversial subject. (Sixteen pages of halftones—not seen.)"
Wills (History/Georgia Southern Univ.) superbly tells the story of one of the Confederacy's authentic military geniuses, the man who consistently ``got there first with the most men'' and bedeviled the Union armies in the West throughout the Civil War. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 1, 1992

"Evocative, lovely, deeply felt, and mature personal writing about a past that's gone."
From New York Times editorial-board member and veteran columnist Cantwell, a memoir of growing up during the 1930's and 40's in the town of Bristol, New Hampshire. ``I have come down with the Bristol Complaint,'' Cantwell announces early in the book: ``People who have the Bristol Complaint can never leave town. Read full book review >
THE HUMAN RACE by Robert Antelme
HISTORY
Released: June 1, 1992

"Antelme's homecoming, recounted by Duras in The War, provides a positive closure to the experience."
Published in France in 1947, here translated for the first time, Antelme's memoir of his year (1944-45) in a German labor camp was written to assuage his guilt at surviving and to deal with his depression. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: June 1, 1992

"Breines successfully evokes the intellectual and cultural milieu of white middle-class East Coast women who dominated the women's movement in the Sixties; if her study is flawed by limiting itself to that group, it's still otherwise thoughtful and jargon- free."
In a ``sociological memoir'' based on novels, films, sociological studies, and personal experience, Breines (Sociology/Northeastern Univ.) traces the origins of the feminist movement in the 60's to the underlying discontents and conflicts experienced by women growing up in the 50's—a scenario that she explored politically in Community and Organization in the New Left, 1962-68 (1982—not reviewed). Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 1, 1992

"Impressively researched, if rather dully written. (Eight pages of b&w photos—not seen.)"
Flat but informative account of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103, and of the tragedy's impact on the American families and friends of the victims, as well as on Lockerbie inhabitants who survived the rain of bodies and flaming debris that descended on their small Scottish town. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: June 1, 1992

"But few readers can finish his powerful account without fearing for the future of freedom of the press—and of American democratic institutions."
Seldom have the American media appeared so hornswoggled, so cowardly, or so supine in defending the First Amendment as they are portrayed as being in this bitter polemic on Persian Gulf War coverage by the publisher of Harper's. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Vanessa Diffenbaugh
September 1, 2015

Vanessa Diffenbaugh is the New York Timesbestselling author of The Language of Flowers; her new novel, We Never Asked for Wings, is about young love, hard choices, and hope against all odds. For 14 years, Letty Espinosa has worked three jobs around San Francisco to make ends meet while her mother raised her children—Alex, now 15, and Luna, six—in their tiny apartment on a forgotten spit of wetlands near the bay. But now Letty’s parents are returning to Mexico, and Letty must step up and become a mother for the first time in her life. “Diffenbaugh’s latest confirms her gift for creating shrewd, sympathetic charmers,” our reviewer writes. View video >