Nature & Travel Book Reviews (page 4)

THE MAD FEAST by Matthew Gavin Frank
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Nov. 9, 2015

"Although Frank's riffs occasionally recall Gertrude Stein's dizzyingly obscure Tender Buttons, overall, he's produced a surprising, entertaining look at what Americans eat and why."
A journey in search of America's tastes. Read full book review >
ALONE ON THE WALL by Alex Honnold
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 9, 2015

"An inspiringly intense memoir for readers of adventure lit."
A much-honored climber's exciting story of the death-defying feats that led to rock-climbing superstardom. Read full book review >

HISTORY
Released: Nov. 3, 2015

"Too many long lists of actions and reactions make the narrative drag, though the book is historically enlightening enough to appeal to readers familiar with Lisbon and its history."
Molesky (History/Seton Hall Univ.; co-author: Our Oldest Enemy: A History of America's Disastrous Relationship with France, 2004) chronicles the history of the Portuguese Empire up to the catastrophic series of events beginning Nov. 1, 1755.Read full book review >
THE PLANET REMADE by Oliver Morton
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Nov. 3, 2015

"An important account of cutting-edge research that will fascinate serious readers and demand the attention of policymakers."
Economist briefings editor Morton (Eating the Sun: How Plants Power the Planet, 2008, etc.) offers a calm, rational discussion of deliberate technological interventions to cool the planet's climate system.Read full book review >
THE ONLY STREET IN PARIS by Elaine Sciolino
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 2, 2015

"A pungent evocation of the conflict and compromise between tradition and innovation that define modern urbanism."
After taking a tart look at her adopted country in La Seduction (2011, etc.), Sciolino shows a softer side in this affectionate portrait of her Ninth Arrondissement neighborhood.Read full book review >

Sacred Mountains of China by Ryan Pyle
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Nov. 2, 2015

"Weekend warriors who crave physical challenges can use Pyle's colorful account to kick-start their own adventures."
Photographer and filmmaker Pyle (The India Ride, 2014, etc.) returns with a fast-paced travel memoir about four months that changed his life. Read full book review >
LONDON FOG by Christine L. Corton
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 1, 2015

"An eye-opening and highly readable picture of London's reactions to the killer fog that has characterized it for centuries."
Most readers would doubt that an entire book about fog could be interesting, but Corton, in her first publication, presents an intriguing biography of the weather effect that defined a national character. Read full book review >
FROM THE MOUTHS OF DOGS by B.J. Hollars
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2015

"An honest, heartwarming choice for animal lovers."
Hollars (Creative Writing/Univ. of Wisconsin, Eau Claire; Opening the Doors: The Desegregation of the University of Alabama and the Fight for Civil Rights in Tuscaloosa, 2013, etc.) examines what "humans stand to learn as a result of our close-knit lives with our pets."Read full book review >
CROSSING THE RIVER by Amy Ragsdale
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2015

"A pleasant chronicle of living life outside one's comfort zone."
Account of a travel-happy American family bent on a "global" education for the children. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Oct. 29, 2015

"Those who've seen the Catskills will love how the authors capture its magic. Those who haven't will start planning a trip."
A history that demonstrates "the color, charm, and even lunacy that for the past four hundred years have characterized the Catskill Mountains and the people attracted to them." Read full book review >
WHITE ESKIMO by Stephen R. Bown
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"A vivacious study that will surely revive interest in the writings of this towering explorer and ethnographer."
Canadian author Bown (The Last Viking: The Life of Roald Amundsen, 2012, etc.) fashions a thorough, insightful biography of the fearless explorer and noted writer Knud Rasmussen (1879-1933). Read full book review >
RICE, NOODLE, FISH by Matt Goulding
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 27, 2015

"A food connoisseur expertly unravels the intricate dance surrounding food in Japan."
A gourmand's tour through Japan. 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 >