More of the same from the outspoken Southerner.

More chuckly preaching from the former Arkansas governor and Fox News weekly show host.

Having run for president in 2008 and lost the Republican nomination, Huckabee (Dear Chandler, Dear Scarlett: A Grandfather's Thoughts on Faith, Family, and the Things that Matter Most, 2012, etc.) sounds like he is going to try again, and he presents his clear delineation in ideology between the views of “Bubble-ville” (the “nerve centers” of New York, Washington, D.C., and Los Angeles) and “Bubba-ville”—the rest of the country. While residents of the former are among his best friends, of course, even if they hate guns, eat kale and embrace gay marriage, the latter group includes his homegrown buddies, those who cherish their guns for hunting and self-defense, attend church and find Miley Cyrus’ contortions shocking. In the name of “decency,” Huckabee sees the country going down the tubes with the politically correct thought police stifling free expression (e.g., “illegal aliens” have become nonoffensive “dreamers”), former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg trying to take away the Big Gulp, National Security Agency revelations that demonstrate how we are becoming more like China in terms of surveillance and rights’ suppression (while China is becoming more like us in terms of capitalist acquisition), TSA officials patting down toddlers in airports, and the general Democrat-driven overloading of regulation and taxation that is, for example, sending California’s small-business owners to Texas. While the author is fond of declaring that people just want to be left alone, he has to admit that certain members of his own party are ruining it for the rest of them—e.g., conservatives attacking other conservatives for not being conservative enough. Huckabee also skewers the Republicans who supported the TARP bailout of banks and offers a populist, bottom-up economic approach to empowering the regular, God-centered folk.

More of the same from the outspoken Southerner.

Pub Date: Jan. 20, 2015

ISBN: 978-1-250-06099-0

Page Count: 272

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: Nov. 5, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 15, 2014


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

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



Well-told and admonitory.

Young-rags-to-mature-riches memoir by broker and motivational speaker Gardner.

Born and raised in the Milwaukee ghetto, the author pulled himself up from considerable disadvantage. He was fatherless, and his adored mother wasn’t always around; once, as a child, he spied her at a family funeral accompanied by a prison guard. When beautiful, evanescent Moms was there, Chris also had to deal with Freddie “I ain’t your goddamn daddy!” Triplett, one of the meanest stepfathers in recent literature. Chris did “the dozens” with the homies, boosted a bit and in the course of youthful adventure was raped. His heroes were Miles Davis, James Brown and Muhammad Ali. Meanwhile, at the behest of Moms, he developed a fondness for reading. He joined the Navy and became a medic (preparing badass Marines for proctology), and a proficient lab technician. Moving up in San Francisco, married and then divorced, he sold medical supplies. He was recruited as a trainee at Dean Witter just around the time he became a homeless single father. All his belongings in a shopping cart, Gardner sometimes slept with his young son at the office (apparently undiscovered by the night cleaning crew). The two also frequently bedded down in a public restroom. After Gardner’s talents were finally appreciated by the firm of Bear Stearns, his American Dream became real. He got the cool duds, hot car and fine ladies so coveted from afar back in the day. He even had a meeting with Nelson Mandela. Through it all, he remained a prideful parent. His own no-daddy blues are gone now.

Well-told and admonitory.

Pub Date: June 1, 2006

ISBN: 0-06-074486-3

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Amistad/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: May 19, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 15, 2006

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