Nonfiction Book Reviews

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Stanley gives history priority over science. His explanation of general relativity will be a stretch for readers unfamiliar with college physics, but he delivers a superb account of Edison's and Eddington's spectacularly successful struggles to work and survive under miserable wartime conditions."
A thrilling history of the development of the theory of relativity, "one of the essential pillars upholding our understanding of the universe." Read full book review >
MR. KNOW-IT-ALL by John Waters
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Wickedly smart and consistently laugh-out-loud funny."
An exuberantly transgressive American filmmaker gets down, dirty, and weird about life, art, and career. Read full book review >

THE BOOK OF PRIDE by Mason Funk
NON-FICTION
Released: May 21, 2019

"A significant educational and motivational tribute to dozens of social justice heroes."
A dignified tapestry of trailblazing pioneers who have contributed to the gay liberation movement. Read full book review >
THE QUEEN by Josh Levin
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"In the end, a politician's reductive sloganeering finds some support here but is ultimately found wanting. A top-notch study of an exceedingly odd moment in history."
Slate editorial director Levin examines the Ronald Reagan-era political trope about welfare queens in its most extreme case. Read full book review >
SUPERIOR by Angela Saini
NON-FICTION
Released: May 21, 2019

"An important and timely reminder that race is 'a social construct' with 'no basis in biology.'"
The racist science behind white supremacy. Read full book review >

SISTERS AND REBELS by Jacquelyn Dowd Hall
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Sharply etched biographical portraits focus a compelling history."
A history of 20th-century sisters who bore witness to Southern culture, politics, and values. Read full book review >
WHAT I STAND ON by Wendell Berry
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Essential for environmentalists, back-to-the-landers, and students and practitioners of the essay form."
A splendid gathering of 50 years' worth of essays "cultural and agricultural" by the eminent Kentucky farmer, poet, novelist, and social critic. Read full book review >
BOOM by Michael Shnayerson
NONFICTION
Released: May 21, 2019

"In this rich, superbly nuanced history, Shnayerson fully demonstrates that he has his finger on the financial pulse of modern art."
An inside portrait of the movers and shakers of modern art. Read full book review >
THE EDGE OF EVERY DAY by Marin Sardy
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Both powerful and disturbing, this impressive debut memoir suggests just how challenging it can be to regain some semblance of balance after that balance is lost."
A shape-shifting debut memoir about a family's coming to terms with schizophrenia—or not. Read full book review >
COSMOLOGICAL KOANS by Anthony Aguirre
NON-FICTION
Released: May 21, 2019

"A delight for readers raised on books like Gödel, Escher, and Bach and The Dancing Wu Li Masters."
A physicist and philosopher delivers a provocative set of meditations on the nature of life, the universe, and everything. Read full book review >
SUPERBUGS by Matt McCarthy
NON-FICTION
Released: May 21, 2019

"Insightful and honest, McCarthy effectively combines useful information about the latest advances in microbial research with accounts of the best aspects of humanity."
A riveting insider's look at the race to find a cure for antibiotic-resistant infections, one of the most pressing challenges in modern medicine. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 21, 2019

"Strathdee's recognition as one of TIME's 50 Most Influential People in Health Care is unquestionably well-deserved; as this page-turning book shows, she is a hero whose insight and determination could serve as models to help save many more lives."
A real-life medical thriller that proves when science, medicine, and perseverance align, "the impossible becomes possible." Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >