Religion Book Reviews (page 3)

WHY PRIESTS? by Garry Wills
RELIGION
Released: Feb. 12, 2013

"A comprehensive, critical exploration of the origin and meaning of priesthood and a formidable volley lobbed at tradition."
Pulitzer Prize winner Wills (Verdi's Shakespeare, 2011, etc.), a venerable voice on church history, thought and practice, provides a stunning critique of the Roman Catholic priesthood. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 17, 2013

"A patient, wholly compelling investigation into a paranoid 'religion' and the faithful held in its sweaty grip."
A devastating history-cum-exposé of the Church of Scientology. Read full book review >

HISTORY
Released: Sept. 24, 2012

"Such a large historical project could have easily descended into tedious and dry academia, but instead, all three volumes are briskly paced, well-researched and insightful. Aficionados of urban histories, in particular, will find much to enjoy."
This ambitious three-volume history, overseen by Moore (Judaic Studies and History/Univ. of Michigan; American Jewish Identity Politics, 2008, etc.), provides a lively, much-needed overview of the role that Jews have played in the history and success of the Big Apple, helping to transform it into "a city of promises, some fulfilled, some pending, some beckoning new generations." Read full book review >
RELIGION
Released: Sept. 11, 2012

"A brilliant exposition of the possibility of science and religion, each in its own way, contributing to a better world."
A leading Jewish theologian argues that both religious fundamentalists and neo-Darwinian atheists such as Richard Dawkins have it wrong when they contend that science and religious faith are incompatible. Read full book review >
RELIGION
Released: July 31, 2012

"A perfect read for the election season, though its appeal will endure."
An irreverent, honest look at life outside the mainstream Mormon Church. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: May 29, 2012

"Awesome scholarship to an admirable purpose."
A religious scholar's compendium of essential American texts. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 28, 2012

"A frank, exhaustive, marvelously readable study."
A sharp, clear, deeply researched examination of the consistent application of the founding religious principles to American foreign policy, from the colonists' sense of a Protestant exceptionalism to President Barack Obama's "Good Niebuhr Policy." Read full book review >
RELIGION
Released: Jan. 4, 2012

"Both well written and researched—a valuable contribution to an ongoing discussion."
An expert on national security challenges stereotypes of Islamic militancy and the threat it poses. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 27, 2011

"A phenomenal blend of science and cultural history."
Hubble Fellow Adam Frank (Astrophysics/Univ. of Rochester) delves into the complex relationship between time and culture and concludes that culture and cosmology—even the Big Bang—are linked inextricably together. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 13, 2011

"Johnson's portrayal of her time as a nun is likely to be controversial; her memoir is exceptional."
Beautifully crafted memoir of one woman's experience in Mother Teresa's order, the Missionaries of Charity. Read full book review >
RELIGION
Released: Aug. 1, 2011

"A masterful exploration of one of America's most shameful secrets."
Award-winning journalist Weyermann (The Gang They Couldn't Catch: The Story of America's Greatest Modern-Day Bank Robbers—And How They Got Away With It, 1993) throws open the curtains on the deplorable actions of Warren Jeffs and his polygamous sect. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 18, 2011

"A full-color view of the spectrum of Islam, a religion too often regarded in black-and-white terms."
A Turkish journalist recounts the history and fluctuations of Islam with grace and style. 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 >