History Book Reviews (page 4)

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 >
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"Preserves like a frozen capsule the British grin-and-bear-it spirit and vocabulary of the WWII years."
A secretary to a formidable London pathologist during World War II reissues her wry, grisly account of murder and corpses, first published in 1955. Read full book review >

HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"Bright, well-written and highly informative."
A history of the navigational tools that tell us where we are. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: April 1, 2014

"Those battling the neo-Confederates and nullificationists of today will want this book to see how it's done. Readers with an interest in American history and the American promise will find it a must-read as well."
A riveting account of the hard-fought passage of "the most important laws of the twentieth century." Read full book review >
THE BURNING SHORE by Ed Offley
HISTORY
Released: March 25, 2014

"A knowledgeable overview and exciting re-creation of the final U-701 attack and defeat."
An authoritative work on the awful, early effectiveness of German U-boats in disrupting shipping traffic off the east coast of the United States. Read full book review >
THE INVENTION OF NEWS by Andrew Pettegree
HISTORY
Released: March 25, 2014

"Was the newspaper an instrument of liberation or control? Can any news be trusted? Is the free flow of information essential to a democracy? Learned and well-written, Pettegree's book ventures fruitful answers."
From imperial messenger and town crier to Citizen Kane: a vigorous history of the rise of the news business. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 25, 2014

"Haunting, doggedly researched but ultimately anticlimactic. The lack of decisive closure to the case tinges the outcome with bitterness."
An elusive Nazi doctor who escaped justice receives a thorough scouring by two journalists. Read full book review >
THE AGE OF RADIANCE by Craig Nelson
HISTORY
Released: March 25, 2014

"An engaging history that raises provocative questions about the future of nuclear science."
Nelson (Rocket Men: The Epic Story of the First Men on the Moon, 2009, etc.) returns with a survey of mankind's use of radioactive materials. Read full book review >
ASIA'S CAULDRON by Robert D. Kaplan
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 25, 2014

"An up-and-down examination in which the author claims that the future of the Pacific Rim will be decided not by what China does but by what America does."
A foreign policy expert looks at the major players in the Southeast Asia Pacific Rim and their nervous watching of what China will do. Read full book review >