THE MAD SCULPTOR by Harold Schechter
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"For readers who enjoy the stories of the sensationalistic press of the 1930s and its crass exploitation of the details of horrific murders; not for fans of clever police work or investigative reporting."
The fiendish story of "mad sculptor" Robert Irwin (1908–1975), featuring "the kind of lurid goings-on that speak to the secret dreams and dangerous desires of the public." Read full book review >
THE TASTEMAKER by Edward White
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"A vigorous, fully fleshed biography of an important contributor to American culture."
A significant reappraisal of a cultural icon and crucial booster of modern artists, especially African-American artists. Read full book review >

THE AGE OF ATHEISTS by Peter Watson
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"An erudite opus demanding substantial patience, intelligence and education from its readers."
Journalist and intellectual historian Watson (The Great Divide: Nature and Human Nature in the Old World and the New, 2012, etc.) analyzes what people have done to supplant or supplement religion since Nietzsche declared the death of God in the late 19th century. Read full book review >
THE ADVENTURES OF HENRY THOREAU by Michael Sims
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"Ably directs readers back to the primary works of Thoreau and his contemporaries."
Delving into the observations of people around Thoreau, such as family, other transcendentalists and townspeople, as well as the famed writer's works, Sims (The Story of Charlotte's Web: E.B. White's Eccentric Life in Nature and the Birth of an American Classic, 2011, etc.) aims to flesh out this uniquely American genius. Read full book review >
RUSSIANS by Gregory Feifer
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"Dark but skillfully painted pictures at an exhibition."
Former NPR Moscow correspondent Feifer (The Great Gamble: The Soviet War in Afghanistan, 2009) returns with an analysis of the Russian character derived from his family history and many years of research and travels. Read full book review >

HISTORY
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"An almost flawlessly conducted tour back to a time when major American cities dreamed big."
A deputy editor at the Boston Globe recalls the visionaries, moneymen, engineering wizards, and the economic and political struggles behind the creation of the subway in America. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 18, 2014

"A story of infrastructure told on a human scale and a trenchant reminder that the modern metropolis comes with high risks and savage costs."
Sprawling account of a preventable tragedy during the gigantic cleanup of Boston Harbor. Read full book review >
WONDROUS BEAUTY by Carol Berkin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 17, 2014

"A wonderful story of a woman who managed to achieve independence and leave her mark in a world not quite ready for her."
Biography of Elizabeth Patterson Bonaparte (1875–1879), who fought against the conventions of her time in "a country that lauded self-interest and self-fulfillment for its men but confinement and sacrifice for their wives." Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 15, 2014

"Somewhat entertaining but lightweight stroll through some of the chemical underpinnings of the modern world."
Personal observations on how the use of seven elements has shaped human civilizations. Read full book review >
THE YEARS OF ZERO by Seng Ty
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 14, 2014

A survivor of the Khmer Rouge regime tells his story. Read full book review >
THE GOLDEN THREAD by Ewan Clayton
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 11, 2014

"A four-millennia trajectory that nearly overwhelms with its incremental magnitude."
British calligrapher Clayton (Arts, Design and Media/Univ. of Sunderland) embarks on an enormous undertaking: the history of the written word. Read full book review >
NOT I by Joachim Fest
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 11, 2014

"A beautifully written and translated work that creates rare, subtle portraits of Germans."
A stunning portrait of a strenuously anti-Nazi family in Berlin who managed to hang on to their moral convictions during the brutalizing Hitler years. Read full book review >