Science & Technology Book Reviews

NON-FICTION
Released: April 18, 2017

"These well-crafted tales of bio-inspired innovation will entrance general readers and warrant the close attention of scientists and technologists."
Los Angeles Times science writer Khan debuts with a richly detailed account of biologically inspired engineering. Read full book review >
THE GREAT UNKNOWN by Marcus Du Sautoy
NON-FICTION
Released: April 11, 2017

"A delicious addition to the 'Big Question' genre."
Are there limits to human knowledge? Philosophers and religious thinkers have long answered "yes" and then provided examples that turned out to be wrong. A renowned mathematician argues that "yes" might very well be correct. Read full book review >

NON-FICTION
Released: April 5, 2017

"Of compelling interest to any animal lover and especially to devotees of canids of all kinds."
Can new kinds of animals be brought into being outside of DNA tinkering and Frankensteining? Most certainly, as a long-running Russian experiment reveals. Read full book review >
THE BODY BUILDERS by Adam Piore
NON-FICTION
Released: March 14, 2017

"A mind-bending read that will expand your perception of self."
An exhilarating look at the cutting edge of bioengineering and how science and medicine are pushing the boundaries of human potential. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: March 7, 2017

"Not everyone approves. Dormehl lets critics have their say but makes a convincing, often disturbing, but always-entertaining case that that we're in for a wild ride."
A history of artificial intelligence and look at the "dazzling (near) future, the changes that lurk just around the corner, and how they will transform our lives forever." Read full book review >

THE INHERITANCE by Niki Kapsambelis
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 7, 2017

"An educational and emotional chronicle that should resonate with a wide variety of readers."
In her debut, journalist Kapsambelis builds a compelling narrative about Alzheimer's disease around one North Dakota extended family. Read full book review >
THE DEATH AND LIFE OF THE GREAT LAKES by Dan Egan
NON-FICTION
Released: March 7, 2017

"Not light reading but essential for policymakers—and highly recommended for the 40 million people who rely on the Great Lakes for drinking water."
An alarming account of the "slow-motion catastrophe" facing the world's largest freshwater system. Read full book review >
HOW EMOTIONS ARE MADE by Lisa Feldman Barrett
NON-FICTION
Released: March 7, 2017

"A highly informative, readable, and wide-ranging discussion of 'how psychology, neuroscience, and related disciplines are moving away from the search for emotion fingerprints and instead asking how emotions are constructed.'"
A well-argued, entertaining disputation of the prevailing view that emotion and reason are at odds. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: Feb. 28, 2017

"A thoroughly researched, clearly presented book that suggests that imprecise brain science will become increasingly more common as evidence in criminal cases."
American Bar Association Journal editor Davis (Defending the Damned: Inside Chicago's Cook County Public Defender's Office, 2007, etc.) engagingly explores how sophisticated brain studies might help explain the causes of violent crimes. Read full book review >
HOMO DEUS by Yuval Noah Harari
NON-FICTION
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"A relentlessly fascinating book that is sure to become—and deserves to be—a bestseller."
In an intellectually provocative follow-up to Sapiens (2015), Harari (History/Hebrew Univ. of Jerusalem) looks to the future. Read full book review >
CONVERGENCE by Peter Watson
NON-FICTION
Released: Feb. 21, 2017

"Those who reject the idea of convergence outright may not get far in this book, but readers with no objection to a sweeping, entirely fascinating history of science during the last 200 years will find an abundance of enlightening material."
The journalist and polymath delivers a delightful exploration of "the deepest idea in the universe." Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: Feb. 7, 2017

"An important story well told, featuring the drama and characters needed to make this a candidate for film adaptation."
A dramatic medical history that reveals the progress and the stumbles, the personalities and the rivalries, in the race to find a vaccine for rubella, or German measles. 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 >