Belew's impressive research effectively supports her hypothesis. A good launching point for even further intensive study.

BRING THE WAR HOME

THE WHITE POWER MOVEMENT AND PARAMILITARY AMERICA

Belew (History/Univ. of Chicago) pieces together evidence from primary and secondary sources to argue that the racist, anti-government, heavily armed white power movement is not what it seems.

As the author shows, many government agencies, law enforcers, and individual citizens have fallen for the myth that the lethal domestic terrorism carried out in the name of white supremacists is the doing of angry lone wolves. On the contrary, she writes, the movement is well-organized and thus more dangerous than previously understood. Belew places these types of individuals under the umbrella of sometimes-violent white power, a group that includes neo-Nazis, radical tax resisters, self-proclaimed Klansmen, members of local militias, separatists who oppose racial integration, and believers in white theologies such as Christian Identity. Although violent white supremacists have never been absent in American history, the author pegs the contemporary movement as growing from the discontent of U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War, a war that not so incidentally trained young men filled with racial hatred how to kill efficiently, not only with rifles, but also with powerful explosives. Before the war, white supremacists believed they were supporting governmental authority via vigilante justice, meant to marginalize undesirables. But the current white power movement members would prefer to overthrow governments, even at the cost of lives taken. A key concept in understanding the overall movement, writes Belew, is the concept of “leaderless resistance,” as exemplified by Timothy McVeigh’s insistence that he acted almost entirely alone in the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing despite evidence that he considered himself a soldier in a coordinated cell-style underground. The near invisibility of the movement leaders has led directly to the proliferation of the public’s belief in the phenomenon of lone wolves, which helps protect the movement from a coordinated takedown.

Belew's impressive research effectively supports her hypothesis. A good launching point for even further intensive study.

Pub Date: April 9, 2018

ISBN: 978-0-674-28607-8

Page Count: 336

Publisher: Harvard Univ.

Review Posted Online: Jan. 9, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 2018

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

Did you like this book?

A moving meditation on mortality by a gifted writer whose dual perspectives of physician and patient provide a singular...

Reader Votes

  • Readers Vote
  • 13

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

Google Rating

  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • google rating
  • Kirkus Reviews'
    Best Books Of 2016

  • New York Times Bestseller

  • Pulitzer Prize Finalist

WHEN BREATH BECOMES AIR

A neurosurgeon with a passion for literature tragically finds his perfect subject after his diagnosis of terminal lung cancer.

Writing isn’t brain surgery, but it’s rare when someone adept at the latter is also so accomplished at the former. Searching for meaning and purpose in his life, Kalanithi pursued a doctorate in literature and had felt certain that he wouldn’t enter the field of medicine, in which his father and other members of his family excelled. “But I couldn’t let go of the question,” he writes, after realizing that his goals “didn’t quite fit in an English department.” “Where did biology, morality, literature and philosophy intersect?” So he decided to set aside his doctoral dissertation and belatedly prepare for medical school, which “would allow me a chance to find answers that are not in books, to find a different sort of sublime, to forge relationships with the suffering, and to keep following the question of what makes human life meaningful, even in the face of death and decay.” The author’s empathy undoubtedly made him an exceptional doctor, and the precision of his prose—as well as the moral purpose underscoring it—suggests that he could have written a good book on any subject he chose. Part of what makes this book so essential is the fact that it was written under a death sentence following the diagnosis that upended his life, just as he was preparing to end his residency and attract offers at the top of his profession. Kalanithi learned he might have 10 years to live or perhaps five. Should he return to neurosurgery (he could and did), or should he write (he also did)? Should he and his wife have a baby? They did, eight months before he died, which was less than two years after the original diagnosis. “The fact of death is unsettling,” he understates. “Yet there is no other way to live.”

A moving meditation on mortality by a gifted writer whose dual perspectives of physician and patient provide a singular clarity.

Pub Date: Jan. 19, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-8129-8840-6

Page Count: 248

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: Sept. 30, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2015

Did you like this book?

more