Science & Technology Book Reviews

DO NO HARM by Henry Marsh
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: May 26, 2015

"Beautifully written and deeply moving—one of the best physician memoirs in recent memory."
A British neurosurgeon delivers fascinating, often harrowing stories of several dozen cases intermixed with compelling digressions into his travels, personal life, and philosophy. Read full book review >
ALL YOU CAN PAY by Anna Bernasek
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: May 26, 2015

"Well informed and useful. The authors stress that the ultimate answer is 'you,' but will you read all the fine print to educate yourself?"
There have been plenty of warnings about corporations profiting from data and compromising privacy, but this straightforward analysis never succumbs to alarmism while letting the facts speak for themselves. Read full book review >

GEEK HERESY by Kentaro Toyama
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: May 26, 2015

"A white paper largely of interest to education theorists and aid specialists, with occasional asides for the Jaron Lanier/Nicholas Carr crowd."
A well-meaning but arid argument, by a former Microsoft executive and current MIT fellow, against the presumed Trojan horses of technology. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 1, 2015

"A dense but accessible discussion of the metaphysical role of time in human affairs."
In 1922, at a meeting of the French Society of Philosophy, Henri Bergson (1859-1941), "one of the most respected philosophers of his era," expressed unhappiness with Albert Einstein's theory of relativity, which discarded the concept of absolute time and denied the reality of simultaneity. Present in the audience, Einstein disagreed. Read full book review >
THE ORDINARY SPACEMAN by Clayton C. Anderson
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 1, 2015

"A spaceman delivers an overlong chronicle of his adventures that may prove engaging to ardent space fans."
An astronaut's memoir from "a small-town boy from Nebraska—nothing special, just an ordinary American." Read full book review >

THE THEFT OF MEMORY by Jonathan Kozol
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 2, 2015

"A compassionate, cathartic, and searingly intimate chronicle of a crippling condition."
An errant son memorializes the devastating impact of his father's struggle with Alzheimer's disease. Read full book review >
WHY INFORMATION GROWS by César Hidalgo
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: June 2, 2015

"Some readers, perhaps economists especially, will construe Hidalgo's widely allusive musings as dotty dispatches from Jonathan Swift's Laputa; others will delight in his novel, holistic take on the dismal science."
An interdisciplinary theorist, Hidalgo, the Macro Connections group leader at the MIT Media Lab, invites us to understand the economy in an entirely different way. Read full book review >
ANOTHER PERSON'S POISON by Matthew Smith
FOOD & COOKING
Released: June 2, 2015

"While Smith's text sometimes reads like a doctoral dissertation, all that meticulousness adds weight and authority to the evidence of the serious shortcomings of a medical specialty."
A scholarly history of food allergy. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 2, 2015

"With concussions from sports injuries making the news, Elliott's easy-to-read account of his experiences is a valuable contribution to a better understanding of the condition."
Up-close view of living with the harrowing effects of a concussion by a professor of artificial intelligence who kept thorough notes of the experience and shares what he learned about overcoming his severe disabilities. Read full book review >
A DANGEROUS MASTER by Wendell Wallach
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: June 2, 2015

"Wallach describes himself as a 'friendly skeptic' with respect to some aspects of technology, but readers may incline to gloom after reading all the ways things technological can go south. A well-mounted argument that deserves wide consideration."
Never mind the zombies and vampires. Worry about the cyborgs and nanobots—the real things, in other words. Read full book review >
THE WEATHER EXPERIMENT by Peter Moore
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 2, 2015

"Detailed and insightful, this book is as relevant as ever in this era of rapid climate change."
In 1800, no one had a clue about what controlled "the heavens," which made the unlikely science of meteorology one of the most remarkable accomplishments of the 19th century. Read full book review >
THE DARK NET by Jamie Bartlett
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: June 2, 2015

"A provocative excursion to the darker side of human nature set free by the anonymous and unregulated boundaries of cyberspace."
A Telegraph columnist and researcher of online social movements reports his findings collected while roaming the outer limits of the Internet. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Jodi Picoult and Samantha van Leer
authors of OFF THE PAGE
May 19, 2015

Meet Oliver, a prince literally taken from the pages of a fairy tale and transported into the real world. Meet Delilah, the girl who wished Oliver into being. In bestseller Jodi Picoult and her daughter Samantha van Leer’s new young adult novel, Off the Page, it’s a miracle that seems perfect at first—but there are complications. To exist in Delilah’s world, Oliver must take the place of a regular boy. Enter Edgar, who agrees to play Oliver’s role in the pages of Delilah’s favorite book. But just when it seems that the plan will work, everything gets turned upside down. We talk to the mother-daughter team on Kirkus TV. View video >