Science & Technology Book Reviews

CHARLES DARWIN by A.N. Wilson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 12, 2017

"An illuminating new biography of a legendary figure in the scientific world whose legacy continues to draw reappraisals."
The prolific novelist and biographer probes the character and controversies of Charles Darwin's life and the controversial theory that turned the world on its head. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 12, 2017

"An impassioned exposé that uncovers a significant danger within the contemporary health care industry."
Intensive reporting on the downsides of the high-risk medical device industry. Read full book review >

Released: Dec. 6, 2017

"An accessible read with a title designed to catch the attention of worried mothers and a message that will be vigorously challenged by a host of agribusiness and pharmaceutical industry spokespeople and segments of the medical profession."
Medical professionals join the debate over the safety of our food supply with the claim that toxic foods are causing hard-to-diagnose chronic health problems in children. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 5, 2017

"A rewarding, expert biography of a giant of the golden age of physics."
A fine life of the scientist "who knew everything about physics, the study of matter, energy, time, and their relationship." Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 5, 2017

"While the author raises more questions than she answers, and some readers may be put off by her less-that-straightforward style, these are thought-provoking questions, and Cole-Adams presents a lyrical journey through the vital question of what it means to be human."
Melbourne-based journalist and novelist Cole-Adams (Walking to the Moon, 2008) blends research, reflection, and memoir to try to grapple with the meaning of consciousness. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Dec. 5, 2017

"Many readers will agree that we are currently living in 'demented times,' and Sigmund adeptly lays out a history that has great relevance for today."
The course of Western philosophy was profoundly altered by the work of a small band of Vienna intellectuals a century ago. Sigmund (Emeritus, Mathematics/Univ. of Vienna; Games of Life: Explorations in Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, 2017, etc.) tells their story. Read full book review >
BIG MIND by Geoff  Mulgan
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"An essential primer on an important new discipline."
How thought happens on a large scale. Read full book review >
Released: Dec. 1, 2017

"An economics degree isn't required to follow the authors' nuanced argument, but it would surely help. Recommended reading for venture capitalists and investment counselors."
A searching, technical examination of the arrival of a kind of economy in which much of what is produced is abstract, symbolic, and speculative. Read full book review >
THE DIGITAL CRITIC by Houman Barekat
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Nov. 30, 2017

"Of broad interest to readers working in that Venn diagram space where writing, publishing, and cyberspace come together."
A gathering of mostly accessible academic pieces on the changes wrought on literature and criticism by the internet. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"Maddox's investigation lacks the dazzling heft of John McPhee's Annals of the Former World (1998), but it makes for a gentle introduction to early modern natural history, one of the last eras in which a gentleman (or gentlewoman) scholar might ever hope to have a solid grasp of every branch of science."
The word "scientist" is Georgian, but the scientific habit of mind is Victorian—and quite British, as this popular history ably shows. Read full book review >
IMMUNE by Catherine  Carver
Released: Nov. 21, 2017

"Not easy going for general readers given the depth, breadth, and detail Carver brings to a complex subject, but credit her for the wits—and wittiness—she uses to enlighten us."
A British immunologist explores "the incredible arsenal that lives within us and how it kills off a plethora of diseases, from the common cold to the plague." Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 17, 2017

"Readers will share Emery's lack of nostalgia for this half-forgotten weapon, but they will admire this satisfying combination of technical background, battlefield fireworks, biographies of colorful major figures, and personal anecdotes from individual soldiers."
An illumination of the "little understood and…poorly documented" story of a significant piece of the "history of chemical warfare in the United States." Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Katey Sagal
author of GRACE NOTES
April 10, 2017

In her memoir Grace Notes, actress and singer/songwriter Katey Sagal takes you through the highs and lows of her life, from the tragic deaths of her parents to her long years in the Los Angeles rock scene, from being diagnosed with cancer at the age of twenty-eight to getting her big break on the fledgling FOX network as the wise-cracking Peggy Bundy on the beloved sitcom Married…with Children. Sparse and poetic, Grace Notes is an emotionally riveting tale of struggle and success, both professional and personal: Sagal’s path to sobriety; the stillbirth of her first daughter, Ruby; motherhood; the experience of having her third daughter at age 52 with the help of a surrogate; and her lifelong passion for music. “While this book is sure to please the author’s many fans, its thoughtful, no-regrets honesty will no doubt also appeal to readers of Hollywood memoirs seeking substance that goes beyond gossip and name-dropping,” our critic writes. “A candid, reflective memoir.” View video >