Religion Book Reviews (page 4)

RELIGION
Released: July 5, 2011

"A bizarre and complicated history told with masterful control."
Thoroughly engrossing page-turner on the shape-shifting Church of Scientology and its despotic, possibly criminal hierarchy. Read full book review >
GROWING UP AMISH by Ira Wagler
RELIGION
Released: July 1, 2011

"Boldly goes where many Amish chronicles fear to tread: the exodus of members seeking an unencumbered lifestyle."
An affecting memoir from a former Old Order Amish member who abandoned his structured family life for autonomy in the free world. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: June 14, 2011

"Exceptional reimagining of Islam."
Manji takes readers outside the boxes of "moderation" and "multi-culturalism" to boldly tackle the problems with modern Islam. Read full book review >
RELIGION
Released: June 1, 2011

"Exhilarating and profound food for the timeless soul."
Western Buddhist offers transcendent life instructions regarding time, space, peace and love. Read full book review >
THE CONVERT by Deborah Baker
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 13, 2011

"An important, searing, highly readable and timely narrative."
A Pulitzer Prize finalist delves into the fascinating life and letters of a young Jewish woman who converted to radical Islam and moved from suburban New York to Pakistan. Read full book review >

MALCOLM X by Manning Marable
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 4, 2011

"A bold, sure-footed, significant biography of enormous depth and feeling."
A candid, corrective look at the Nation of Islam leader and renegade—and a deeply informed investigation of the evolution of his thinking on race and revolution. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: March 9, 2011

"Another winner from a skillful writer and thinker of the first rank."
A sound, deeply felt study of Jerusalem as the "cockpit of violence" for the three Abrahamic religions. Read full book review >
AN EXCLUSIVE LOVE by Johanna Adorján
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 10, 2011

"In the process of assimilating disparate facts into a poignant and elegant story, Adorján exposes her own hopes and fears, an added bonus."
Berlin-based journalist Adorján's debut examines why and how her grandparents committed suicide together, decades after they survived the Holocaust. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Dec. 13, 2010

"Well-written and -documented, a supremely helpful guide in sorting out how we arrived at that odd state of affairs."
A lucid history of how California, land of fruits and nuts and be-here-nowness, became a bastion of fundamentalist reaction. The manuscript won the 2006 Allan Nevins Prize from the Society of American Historians. Read full book review >
THE BOY by Dan Porat
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 2, 2010

"A remarkable work and an essential document in the vast library devoted to the Shoah."
A moving scholarly detective story that hinges on an iconic photograph from the Holocaust. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Oct. 19, 2010

"Not to be confused with the 1997 Richard Vetere novel of the same name, Briggs's book provides an equally entertaining story, with the added benefit of being true."
Intriguing glimpse into the Vatican saint-making process. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 12, 2010

"Learned, lively and shrewd."
Lepore (American History/Harvard Univ.;New York Burning: Liberty, Slavery, and Conspiracy in Eighteenth-Century Manhattan, 2005, etc.) explores the nexus of the American Revolution, the understanding and telling of history and today's Tea Party. 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 >