Science & Technology Book Reviews

Released: Aug. 22, 2017

"A hortatory call to arms for young people and a harsh critique of their ruling elders."
A young Canadian journalist argues that a unique generational values shift is occurring that may upend just about everything to save the planet. Read full book review >
HOW LANGUAGE BEGAN by Daniel L.  Everett
NON-FICTION
Released: Aug. 22, 2017

"A worthy book for general readers not well-versed in anthropology, neurology, linguistics, and other technical sciences."
A noted linguist explores "the evolutionary history of language as a human invention—from the emergence of our species to the more than 7,000 languages spoken today." Read full book review >

Released: Aug. 24, 2017

"In this bible of DNA information, Watson is as provocative and optimistic as ever."
A masterful summary of genetic science past, present, and future, from one of its prime movers. Read full book review >
Released: Aug. 29, 2017

"A perceptive but discouraging analysis of the current state of government electronic surveillance."
A former civil rights lawyer considers changing attitudes regarding personal privacy within the National Security Agency following the disclosures by Edward Snowden. Read full book review >
QUAKELAND by Kathryn Miles
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 29, 2017

"Occasionally long-winded but readable and engaging—not to mention eye-opening, as the author delivers a firm warning to policymakers as well as individual citizens."
A wide-ranging account of earthquakes, the least understood of natural disasters, with vivid stories of the havoc they create and a warning about what will someday happen in the United States. Read full book review >

LIFE 3.0 by Max  Tegmark
Released: Aug. 29, 2017

"Prophesies have a dreadful record, but they are also endlessly fascinating. Readers may balk now and then—Tegmark's solutions to inevitable mass unemployment are a stretch—but most will find the narrative irresistible."
The founder of the Future of Life Institute explores one of the most intriguing scientific frontiers, artificial general intelligence, and how humans can grow along with it. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 4, 2017

"Baggott provides a wild but expert and comprehensive ride; readers will agree that while we have learned a great deal about matter, we still don't understand it."
An imaginative book that seeks the answer to the question, what is matter? Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"A thoughtful progressive feint against the vulgar fearmongering of the moment."
A provocative look at the science and psychology behind fear-based politics. Read full book review >
DARWIN'S BACKYARD by James T. Costa
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"While casual readers may not be tempted to perform the experiments, the insights Costa provides into Darwin's thinking and his revelations about the great man's working life make this a worthwhile read. A perfect resource for biology teachers."
An instructive and entertaining look at Darwin's "experimentising" and how it can be readily duplicated using mostly simple household tools. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"Not just a medical history, but a call to action. TB is not some quaint 19th-century romantic tragedy but rather a very real and present danger that requires investments in diagnostics and new drugs and greater attention to social and racial inequities."
An exegesis on tuberculosis, a scourge that continues to threaten humanity: in 2015, there were 10.4 million new cases and 1.4 million deaths. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"Not without flaws but an informative and inspiring book."
A video game developer tells how she became an outspoken advocate for victims of online abuse. Read full book review >
Released: Sept. 5, 2017

"Advice for students and teachers rounds out a persuasive plea for creative learning."
An argument for why higher education requires radical change to prepare students for an unpredictable future. 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 >