Psychology Book Reviews

NO ONE CARES ABOUT CRAZY PEOPLE by Ron Powers
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: March 21, 2017

"This hybrid narrative, enhanced by the author's considerable skills as a literary stylist, succeeds on every level."
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Powers (Mark Twain: A Life, 2005, etc.) presents two searing sagas: an indictment of mental health care in the United States and the story of his two schizophrenic sons. Read full book review >
HOW EMOTIONS ARE MADE by Lisa Feldman Barrett
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: March 7, 2017

"A highly informative, readable, and wide-ranging discussion of 'how psychology, neuroscience, and related disciplines are moving away from the search for emotion fingerprints and instead asking how emotions are constructed.'"
A well-argued, entertaining disputation of the prevailing view that emotion and reason are at odds. Read full book review >

PSYCHOLOGY
Released: Feb. 28, 2017

"A thoroughly researched, clearly presented book that suggests that imprecise brain science will become increasingly more common as evidence in criminal cases."
American Bar Association Journal editor Davis (Defending the Damned: Inside Chicago's Cook County Public Defender's Office, 2007, etc.) engagingly explores how sophisticated brain studies might help explain the causes of violent crimes. Read full book review >
THE PERPETUAL NOW by Michael D. Lemonick
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Feb. 7, 2017

"An absolutely memorable book."
A veteran science journalist uses the story of Lonni Sue Johnson, a young woman who suffered a severe infection that destroyed her hippocampus, to illuminate his journey into the murky subject of memory itself. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 7, 2017

"A lively and edifying narrative with lessons for today."
In her first book, Purnell gets our nerve endings tingling with an exploration of the interplay of mind and body as seen through the lens of the Enlightenment. Read full book review >

HIT MAKERS by Derek Thompson
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Feb. 7, 2017

"Good reading for anyone who aspires to understand the machinery of pop culture—and perhaps even craft a hit of his or her own."
How does a nice idea become an earworm, or a fashion trend, or—shudder—a meme? Atlantic senior editor Thompson ventures a few well-considered answers. Read full book review >
FROM BACTERIA TO BACH AND BACK by Daniel C. Dennett
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 7, 2017

"Anyone interested in modern theories of the mind and consciousness has to reckon with Dennett. This book, dense but accessible, is as good a place as any to start."
The dean of consciousness-raising consciousness-explaining returns with another cleareyed exploration of the mind. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 24, 2017

"Thirty days on LSD therapy makes for a fascinating trip, indeed, and a learning opportunity for readers interested in the past and present therapeutic uses for psychedelic drugs."
How self-administering tiny doses of LSD abated the disintegration of the author's mental health and family life. Read full book review >
PSYCHOLOGY
Released: Nov. 8, 2016

"An eye-opening exploration of the intersection between philosophy and science and a fascinating peek into our innermost selves."
The human mind is capable of astonishing feats, but does it hold the power to alleviate pain, or even cure disease, simply through suggestibility? Read full book review >
LIFE BREAKS IN by Mary Cappello
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 1, 2016

"An illuminating celebration of enveloping moments of being."
The author aims "not to chase mood, track it, or pin it down" but rather to "listen for it." Read full book review >
MIND OVER MONEY by Claudia Hammond
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Nov. 1, 2016

"A delightful treatment of a subject many of us would prefer to ignore, gently subversive in its undermining of preconceptions and prejudices."
A comprehensive guide for bringing the power of money under control. Read full book review >
AMERICAN PHILOSOPHY by John Kaag
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 11, 2016

"Kaag's lively prose, acute self-examination, unfolding romance, and instructive history of philosophy as a discipline make for a surprisingly absorbing book."
A compelling hybrid combining memoir, a dramatic narrative about saving an endangered rare book collection, and the intellectual history of philosophy. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Laini Taylor
March 27, 2017

In bestselling YA writer Laini Taylor’s new fantasy novel, Strange the Dreamer, the dream chooses the dreamer, not the other way around—and Lazlo Strange, war orphan and junior librarian, has always feared that his dream chose poorly. Since he was five years old he's been obsessed with the mythic lost city of Weep, but it would take someone bolder than he to cross half the world in search of it. Then a stunning opportunity presents itself, in the person of a hero called the Godslayer and a band of legendary warriors, and he has to seize his chance to lose his dream forever. What happened in Weep two hundred years ago to cut it off from the rest of the world? What exactly did the Godslayer slay that went by the name of god? And what is the mysterious problem he now seeks help in solving? “Lovers of intricate worldbuilding and feverish romance will find this enthralling,” our critic writes. View video >