A well-reasoned argument that, given the arrival of a like-minded administration, may soon prove to have legs.

A book from the Patriotic Millionaires group demands that wealthy Americans contribute vastly more to the public treasury.

Pearl, Payne, and their fellow philanthropic millionaires have a dire warning for the ultrawealthy: “You cannot continue to sit by and enjoy your riches while the rest of the world falls further into poverty and chaos….Reread your history books. Dysfunctional societies don’t end well for rich people either.” Though being rich is a fine thing—“I would recommend it to anyone,” Pearl breezily notes—it carries certain responsibilities as well as considerable freedoms. An equitable tax code is a start. The current system was built for the rich and by the rich, and it is structured so that it actively militates against building a strong middle class, predicated on fictions such as the trickle-down theory of economics. Inequality is rampant, and with it, instability and strife grow. This is all by design, write the authors. Against it, they talk economics. By reason of the theory of marginal utility, which holds that a person who has lots of units of something—dollars, say—will value an added unit less than a person who has few of them, those who have more money than they know what to do with will scarcely register a tax hike. Doing away with carried-interest deductions, putting capital gains rates on par with the rates applied to earned income, and taxing inheritances will do their part, too. The authors note that the current tax mess can’t be laid only at the door of Republicans, and they charge that it’s up to the people to rise up not violently but politically by voting for those who will advance a more equitable system: “If the American people are paying attention…they can have the kind of tax code they want, regardless of who’s in charge.”

A well-reasoned argument that, given the arrival of a like-minded administration, may soon prove to have legs.

Pub Date: April 13, 2021

ISBN: 978-1-62097-626-5

Page Count: 336

Publisher: The New Press

Review Posted Online: Jan. 22, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15, 2021


A mostly compelling account of one woman’s struggles within Trumpworld.

An insider’s account of the rampant misconduct within the Trump administration, including the tumult surrounding the insurrection of Jan. 6, 2021.

Hutchinson, who served as an assistant to Mark Meadows, Trump’s former White House chief of staff, gained national prominence when she testified to the House Select Committee, providing possibly the most damaging portrait of Trump’s erratic behavior to date. In her hotly anticipated memoir, the author traces the challenges and triumphs of her upbringing in New Jersey and the work (including a stint as an intern with Sen. Ted Cruz) that led her to coveted White House internships and eventual positions in the Office of Legislative Affairs and with Meadows. While the book offers few big reveals beyond her testimony (many details leaked before publication), her behind-the-scenes account of the chaotic Trump administration is intermittently insightful. Her initial portrait of Trump is less critical than those written by other former staffers, as the author gauges how his actions were seemingly stirred more by vanity and fear of appearing weak, rather than pure malevolency. For example, she recalls how he attended an event without a mask because he didn’t want to smear his face bronzer. Hutchinson also provides fairly nuanced portraits of Meadows and Rep. Kevin McCarthy, who, along with Trump, eventually turned against her. She shares far more negative assessments about others in Trump’s orbit, including Rep. Matt Gaetz, Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene, and adviser Rudy Giuliani, recounting how Giuliani groped her backstage during Trump’s Jan. 6 speech. The narrative lags after the author leaves the White House, but the story intensifies as she’s faced with subpoenas to testify and is forced to undergo deep soul-searching before choosing to sever ties with Trump and provide the incriminating information that could help take him down.

A mostly compelling account of one woman’s struggles within Trumpworld.

Pub Date: Sept. 26, 2023

ISBN: 9781668028285

Page Count: 384

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Sept. 28, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Nov. 1, 2023


A wide-ranging collection of testaments to what moves the heart.

Black Americans declare their love.

This anthology brings together dozens of love letters by prominent Black Americans. The entries, interspersed with illustrations, address an eclectic mix of topics arranged under five categories: Care, Awe, Loss, Ambivalence, and Transformation. In their introduction, editors Brown and Johnson note the book’s inspiration in the witnessing of violence directed at Black America. Reckonings with outrage and grief, they explain, remain an urgent task and a precondition of creating and sustaining loving bonds. The editors seek to create “a site for our people to come together on the deepest, strongest emotion we share” and thus open “the possibility for shared deliverance” and “carve out a space for healing, together.” This aim is powerfully realized in many of the letters, which offer often poignant portrayals of where redemptive love has and might yet be found. Among the most memorable are Joy Reid’s “A Love Letter to My Hair,” a sensitive articulation of a hard-won sense of self-love; Morgan Jerkins’ “Dear Egypt,” an exploration of a lifelong passion for an ancient world; and VJ Jenkins’ “Pops and Dad,” an affirmation that it “is beautiful to be Black, to be a man, and to be gay.” Tracey Michae’l Lewis-Giggetts’ “Home: A Reckoning” is particularly thoughtful and incisive in its examination of a profound attachment, “in the best and worst ways,” to Louisville, Kentucky. Most of the pieces pair personal recollections with incisive cultural commentary. The cumulative effect of these letters is to set forth a panorama of opportunities for maintaining the ties that matter most, especially in the face of a cultural milieu that continues to produce virulent forms of love’s opposite. Other contributors include Nadia Owusu, Jamila Woods, Ben Crump, Eric Michael Dyson, Kwame Dawes, Jenna Wortham, and Imani Perry.

A wide-ranging collection of testaments to what moves the heart.

Pub Date: Oct. 24, 2023

ISBN: 9781638931201

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Get Lifted Books/Zando

Review Posted Online: June 29, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 2023

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