An engaging tome packed with statistics, personal stories, and helpful suggestions.

Awards & Accolades

Our Verdict

  • Our Verdict
  • GET IT

Gianturco and Sangster present a guide to organizing grassroots movements to help combat climate change.

The authors sound a powerful call to arms in the fight against global warming; as they write, “we can’t wait for others to figure this out for us.” Entries in their guide include “Increasing Awareness” and “Reducing Emissions,” which feature interviews with various female movers and shakers in the world of environmental health. A “What You Can Do” section ends each chapter, with suggestions like “make changes on your property to support ecosystems where you live,” and “get involved in your city or community’s planning council.” The interviews are edifying, including a conversation with Nelleke Van Der Puil, Vice President of Materials for LEGO. The toy company has pledged to be 100% sustainable by 2030 and has already created more than 80 LEGO brick shapes from sugar cane that look and feel identical to the old plastic ones. The authors offer statistics to support their assertion that women are especially effective leaders in combating global warming, and they make it as easy for the reader to get involved by including a QR code list that can be scanned to get started on various projects, including “help a woman entrepreneur bring solar power to her community in rural Africa” or “take action with a global network of women environmental and climate leaders.” A combination of regular printed text and handwritten slogans, peppered alongside wildly colorful pictures and photographs of activists around the world, creates a visually chaotic yet appealing layout. There are copious facts and figures provided, but the clearly defined blocks of text don’t overwhelm readers with large amounts of information all at once. Instead, this upbeat primer provides a fresh, inspiring, and fun look at how everyone can make an impact when it comes to protecting the planet.

An engaging tome packed with statistics, personal stories, and helpful suggestions.

Pub Date: Sept. 6, 2022

ISBN: 9781576879542

Page Count: 186

Publisher: powerHouse Books

Review Posted Online: March 15, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2023


Alternately admiring and critical, unvarnished, and a closely detailed account of a troubled innovator.

A warts-and-all portrait of the famed techno-entrepreneur—and the warts are nearly beyond counting.

To call Elon Musk (b. 1971) “mercurial” is to undervalue the term; to call him a genius is incorrect. Instead, Musk has a gift for leveraging the genius of others in order to make things work. When they don’t, writes eminent biographer Isaacson, it’s because the notoriously headstrong Musk is so sure of himself that he charges ahead against the advice of others: “He does not like to share power.” In this sharp-edged biography, the author likens Musk to an earlier biographical subject, Steve Jobs. Given Musk’s recent political turn, born of the me-first libertarianism of the very rich, however, Henry Ford also comes to mind. What emerges clearly is that Musk, who may or may not have Asperger’s syndrome (“Empathy did not come naturally”), has nurtured several obsessions for years, apart from a passion for the letter X as both a brand and personal name. He firmly believes that “all requirements should be treated as recommendations”; that it is his destiny to make humankind a multi-planetary civilization through innovations in space travel; that government is generally an impediment and that “the thought police are gaining power”; and that “a maniacal sense of urgency” should guide his businesses. That need for speed has led to undeniable successes in beating schedules and competitors, but it has also wrought disaster: One of the most telling anecdotes in the book concerns Musk’s “demon mode” order to relocate thousands of Twitter servers from Sacramento to Portland at breakneck speed, which trashed big parts of the system for months. To judge by Isaacson’s account, that may have been by design, for Musk’s idea of creative destruction seems to mean mostly chaos.

Alternately admiring and critical, unvarnished, and a closely detailed account of a troubled innovator.

Pub Date: Sept. 12, 2023

ISBN: 9781982181284

Page Count: 688

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Review Posted Online: Sept. 12, 2023

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2023


A clearly delineated guide to finally eradicate poverty in America.

A thoughtful program for eradicating poverty from the Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Evicted.

“America’s poverty is not for lack of resources,” writes Desmond. “We lack something else.” That something else is compassion, in part, but it’s also the lack of a social system that insists that everyone pull their weight—and that includes the corporations and wealthy individuals who, the IRS estimates, get away without paying upward of $1 trillion per year. Desmond, who grew up in modest circumstances and suffered poverty in young adulthood, points to the deleterious effects of being poor—among countless others, the precarity of health care and housing (with no meaningful controls on rent), lack of transportation, the constant threat of losing one’s job due to illness, and the need to care for dependent children. It does not help, Desmond adds, that so few working people are represented by unions or that Black Americans, even those who have followed the “three rules” (graduate from high school, get a full-time job, wait until marriage to have children), are far likelier to be poor than their White compatriots. Furthermore, so many full-time jobs are being recast as contracted, fire-at-will gigs, “not a break from the norm as much as an extension of it, a continuation of corporations finding new ways to limit their obligations to workers.” By Desmond’s reckoning, besides amending these conditions, it would not take a miracle to eliminate poverty: about $177 billion, which would help end hunger and homelessness and “make immense headway in driving down the many agonizing correlates of poverty, like violence, sickness, and despair.” These are matters requiring systemic reform, which will in turn require Americans to elect officials who will enact that reform. And all of us, the author urges, must become “poverty abolitionists…refusing to live as unwitting enemies of the poor.” Fortune 500 CEOs won’t like Desmond’s message for rewriting the social contract—which is precisely the point.

A clearly delineated guide to finally eradicate poverty in America.

Pub Date: March 21, 2023

ISBN: 9780593239919

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Nov. 30, 2022

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2023

Close Quickview