Nature & Travel Book Reviews (page 206)

NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 27, 1995

"Not for everyone this bitter medicine, devoid as it is of mystery and charm, but it is fascinating reading, impeccably researched, and powerful in that Chase is clearly a friend of the Earth, not another glad-tider or apologist. (Author tour)"
Environmental bad boy Chase (Playing God in Yellowstone, 1986, etc.) takes on biocentrism and the Endangered Species Act in this delightfully angry if at times snide volume. Read full book review >
MY LIFE AS A REAL DOG, BY DIDO by Chapman Pincher
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 26, 1995

"Instead of the lighthearted approach one might expect from a book written from a dog's point of view, this work is, on the whole, serious, intellectual, and rather dry. (6 wash drawings, not seen)"
Acting as ghostwriter for his ``chocolate'' Labrador, Dido, well-known British espionage author Pincher (The Spycatcher Affair, 1988, etc.) here attempts to make a detailed study of the human- canine relationshipwith middling results. Read full book review >

NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 24, 1995

"Strong on natural history; read it for the birds. (illustrations, not seen)"
These ``fictional portrayals'' of the daily lives and behavior patterns of 33 nesting species of hawks, falcons, eagles, and vultures are brilliant when Dunne (The Feather Quest, 1992, etc.) stays with the bird. Read full book review >
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: Oct. 23, 1995

"A small jewel of a book, as intricate and astonishing as the wonders it describes. (b&w drawings, not seen)"
A staff writer for the New Yorker presents a whimsical and often profound tour of a truly curious museum and its highly ironic curator. Read full book review >
THE CHINA VOYAGE by Tim Severin
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: Oct. 23, 1995

"Brilliantly told story of hope, camaraderie, and closeness to the elements. (color inserts, not seen)"
Award-winning writer and adventurer Severin (In Search of Genghis Khan, 1992, etc.) describes how he and his crew of seven made the seemingly impossible voyage across the Pacific in a craft that Chinese sailors might have used 2,000 years ago. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 19, 1995

"Breezily written and full of fascinating characters and facts, here's a science book as enjoyable as any novel."
The subtitle here tells the reader exactly what the book is about; what it doesn't say is how much fun it is to read. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 13, 1995

"An absorbing look at the impact of Alliance politics on the outcome of WW II."
In a global history of the Grand Alliance, military historian Breuer (Race to the Moon, 1993, etc.) shows that the shouting war that raged among Allied leaders was in its way almost as violent as the shooting one with the Axis. Read full book review >
HIGH TIDE IN TUCSON by Barbara Kingsolver
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Oct. 11, 1995

"Mined selectively, however, this will reveal some beautiful gems."
In this collection of essays, novelist Kingsolver (Pigs in Heaven, 1993, etc.) displays considerable nature-writing talent, punctuated by stretches of smarmy self-reflection and hit-or-miss musings on issues ranging from biological determinism to the Gulf War. Read full book review >
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 9, 1995

"A fun, sturdy book filled with helpful charts and dozens of illustrations."
A nifty popularization of the hard science and history of volcanoes and earthquakes. Read full book review >
HOPE, HUMAN AND WILD by Bill McKibben
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 6, 1995

"They are not to be found here."
A tuneless song of praise for the Earth and the possibilities of its restoration to ecological health. Read full book review >
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 6, 1995

"Eloquently argued and rigorously supported by scientific evidence, this is a powerful document in the fight to preserve our natural heritage while there is still time. (20 b&w photos and line drawings, not seen) (Author tour)"
Here's a sobering look at the human race's impact on its environment, from the authors of Origins (1977) and Origins Reconsidered (1992). Read full book review >
THE DOGS WHO CAME TO STAY by George Pitcher
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Oct. 5, 1995

"With a touch of Cleveland Armory and Peter Gethers, this work, charmingly illustrated by Tom George, surely deserves its own place in the pet literature spotlight. (photos, not seen)"
A four-hankie story about two Princeton University bachelor professors and the dogs who adopt them. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Michael Eric Dyson
February 2, 2016

In Michael Eric Dyson’s rich and nuanced book new book, The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America, Dyson writes with passion and understanding about Barack Obama’s “sad and disappointing” performance regarding race and black concerns in his two terms in office. While race has defined his tenure, Obama has been “reluctant to take charge” and speak out candidly about the nation’s racial woes, determined to remain “not a black leader but a leader who is black.” Dyson cogently examines Obama’s speeches and statements on race, from his first presidential campaign through recent events—e.g., the Ferguson riots and the eulogy for the Rev. Clementa Pinckney in Charleston—noting that the president is careful not to raise the ire of whites and often chastises blacks for their moral failings. At his best, he spoke with “special urgency for black Americans” during the Ferguson crisis and was “at his blackest,” breaking free of constraints, in his “Amazing Grace” Charleston eulogy. Dyson writes here as a realistic, sometimes-angry supporter of the president. View video >