Science & Technology Book Reviews

HOW TO SURVIVE A PLAGUE by David France
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: Nov. 29, 2016

"A lucid, urgent updating of Randy Shilts' And the Band Played On (1987) and a fine work of social history."
How scientists and citizens banded together to lift the death sentence from AIDS. Read full book review >
DANGEROUS YEARS by David Orr
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Nov. 22, 2016

"A well-meaning but diffident treatise. Read Lewis Dartnell's The Knowledge (2014) for a more useful take on what comes next."
Farewell, beloved planet. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Nov. 22, 2016

"Required reading for a generation that's 'going to be asked to dance in a hurricane.'"
The celebrated New York Times columnist diagnoses this unprecedented historical moment and suggests strategies for "resilience and propulsion" that will help us adapt. Read full book review >
THE UNNATURAL WORLD by David Biello
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"In this well-written, significant book, Biello insists that humans, the world's most successful invasive species, have the ability to engage in planetary protection and human survival, but it will require wisdom, innovation, and restraint."
In his first book, Scientific American editor Biello argues that it is not a lack of money or technology that prevents our addressing environmental and societal ills but rather a lack of motivation. Read full book review >
BEYOND EARTH by Charles Wohlforth
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"A welcome contribution to the ongoing discussion of the future of America's space program."
An assessment of the prospects for establishing a future space colony. Read full book review >

A MOST IMPROBABLE JOURNEY by Walter Alvarez
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"The science is impeccable, the history a tad simplistic. An Ascent of Man-like approach to the subject of Big History would be most welcome, but this isn't quite it."
Count yourself lucky that you live on a planet with gravity—and silicon. Read full book review >
RETHINK by Steven Poole
HISTORY
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"There's not much that's new here, but that's the point. A modest, enjoyable look at the care and feeding of creativity."
When seeking inspiration, Guardian columnist Poole (Unspeak: How Words Become Weapons, How Weapons Become a Message, and How that Message Becomes Reality, 2006, etc.) writes, it's not a bad idea to sift through the junk pile for second thoughts. Read full book review >
MIND by Daniel J. Siegel
PSYCHOLOGY
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"If you embrace the notion that humankind ought to embrace more kindness, 'a natural outcome of integration,' then this is your book."
A clinical professor of psychology serves up the soft, squishy side of neuroscience.Read full book review >
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"An original, authentic take on the fissures developing behind North Korea's totalitarian facade."
A crisp, dramatic examination of how technology and human ingenuity are undermining North Korea's secretive dictatorship. Read full book review >
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: Nov. 15, 2016

"There's not much new here apart from some synthesis of current theories about meme proliferation and networking, but the book should interest cyberspace completists."
A manifesto of sorts, proclaiming that the ubiquity of social media is not necessarily the end of the world, Luddites notwithstanding, even if those media need to be cajoled "into a healthier state." Read full book review >
A SPACE TRAVELER'S GUIDE TO THE SOLAR SYSTEM by Mark Thompson
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: Nov. 8, 2016

"Thompson is a knowledgeable and capable guide, but his many fans may prefer to stick to his TV shows."
The popular host of the BBC's award-winning Stargazing Live takes readers on an imaginary journey throughout our solar system. 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 >
Kirkus Interview
Kendare Blake
November 16, 2016

Bestseller Kendare Blake’s latest novel, Three Dark Crowns, a dark and inventive fantasy about three sisters who must fight to the death to become queen. In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions. But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. The last queen standing gets the crown. “Gorgeous and bloody, tender and violent, elegant, precise, and passionate; above all, completely addicting,” our reviewer writes in a starred review. View video >