Science & Technology Book Reviews

COLLEGE DISRUPTED by Craig Ryan
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 10, 2015

"Even those who agree on the problems might take issue with the author's solutions."
A manifesto that analyzes higher education as another industry ripe for disruption. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 10, 2015

"A thoughtful yet obscure Cassandra warning of great vulnerabilities disguised as gifts."
Ambitious yet dry treatise regarding a particular terror of modern life: the increasing ubiquity of potential harm spawned by technological transformations. Read full book review >

KILL CHAIN by Andrew Cockburn
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 10, 2015

"Sharp-eyed and disturbing, especially Cockburn's concluding assessment that, nourished by an unending flow of money, 'the assassination machine is here to stay.'"
An examination of the rise of the present generation of killing machines, antiseptic and seemingly inescapable. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: March 10, 2015

"Let us be grateful that there are writers like Dreger who have the wits and the guts to fight for truth."
Dreger (Clinical Medical Humanities and Bioethics/Northwestern Univ.; One of Us: Conjoined Twins and the Future of Normal, 2004, etc.) passionately investigates character assassinations in academia and how "[s]cience and social justice require each other to be healthy, and both are critically important to human freedom."Read full book review >
THE WORM AT THE CORE by Sheldon Solomon
PSYCHOLOGY
Released: March 10, 2015

"Insightful but not entirely convincing."
Psychology professors Solomon (Skidmore Coll.), Greenberg (Univ. of Arizona) and Pyszczynski (Univ. of Colorado, Colorado Springs) follow up their study of the psychological effects of 9/11 on the American population (In the Wake of 9-11: the Psychology of Terror, 2003) with a look at how the knowledge of mortality impacts human culture.Read full book review >

SHRINKS by Jeffrey A. Lieberman
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: March 10, 2015

"Vastly edifying and vigorously written—a much-needed update on how far the psychiatric industry has come, both medically and from a public perception standpoint."
An intelligent, encouraging survey of the psychiatric industry. Read full book review >
THE AGE OF SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT by Jeffrey D. Sachs
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 10, 2015

"Required reading for policymakers and students, and general readers will finish the book realizing they actually understand what sustainable development is all about."
A leading economist offers a brilliant analysis of the worldwide need to balance economic development and environmental sustainability. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 16, 2015

"Ingenious, lucid and revealing look at the lives of two brilliant men who changed our way of seeing the world."
A fine addition to the burgeoning genre of dual biography of great figures whose lives were related, if often distantly. Read full book review >
THE NEXT SPECIES by Michael Tennesen
NATURE & TRAVEL
Released: March 17, 2015

"In a mostly engaging book, Tennesen concludes that evolution will again drive survivors into a burst of creativity that will repopulate the planet, but it's uncertain if this will include Homo sapiens."
In the past, five mass extinctions have destroyed at least 75 percent of all living species. It is no secret that we are now in the midst of another. Read full book review >
SPRING CHICKEN by Bill Gifford
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: March 17, 2015

"Gifford skillfully navigates the many strands of aging research to create an entertaining narrative of the perils of getting old."
Examination of the science behind humanity's obsession with aging and staving off death. Read full book review >
TERMS OF SERVICE by Jacob Silverman
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: March 17, 2015

"Intelligent, provocative and illuminating in the author's argument that social media companies must examine their ethics and find business models that don't depend on perpetual surveillance of customers."
Freelancer Silverman, a celebrated Jeopardy! champion and contributor to Slate, the Atlantic and other publications, debuts with a deep and disquieting plunge into digital culture.Read full book review >
GALILEO'S TELESCOPE by Massimo Bucciantini
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 23, 2015

"This erudite work will take some effort to follow and understand, but it's well-worth the effort for a glimpse into the world-shattering effect of the birth of the telescope."
Italian professors of the history of science Bucciantini (Univ. of Siena), Camerota (Univ. of Cagliari) and Giudice (Univ. of Bergamo) explore the geographical dispersion of the telescope and the radical change its "new sky" produced. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Gabrielle Zevin
March 3, 2015

A. J. Fikry’s life is not at all what he expected it to be. He lives alone, his bookstore is experiencing the worst sales in its history, and now his prized possession, a rare collection of Poe poems, has been stolen. But when a mysterious package appears at the bookstore, its unexpected arrival gives Fikry the chance to make his life over—and see everything anew. “Zevin writes characters who grow and prosper,” our reviewer writes, “in a narrative that is sometimes sentimental, sometimes funny, sometimes true to life and always entertaining.” View video >