Science & Technology Book Reviews (page 167)

Released: Nov. 8, 1996

"With exposure on CNN, a vigorous presence on the Internet, and a new groundswell of support at NASA, this plan may well prove to be the one, at long last, to fly."
Zubrin is an aeronautical engineer at Martin Marietta, Wagner the former editor of the National Space Society's magazine, Ad Astra, and together they make a forceful argument for the exploration and settlement of Mars. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"Probably therapeutic for the author, riveting for the social voyeur, and mildly illuminating for the student of family pathology. (First serial to the New Yorker)"
A dreamlike memoir of the violence and sexuality underlying a well-planned family landscape, its statuary nooks and architectural crannies filled with secrets. Read full book review >

Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"Strikingly well argued and clear."
Speculations on life and death from a professor of cellular biology at UCLA. ``We die because our cells die,'' Clark says. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

A lucid, accessible explanation of what recent research on the brain has revealed about the nature and origins of emotion. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"Not his best effort, but pleasant, readable, and persuasive, nonetheless."
A look at the engineering principles behind ordinary objects and processes by the author of the bestsellers The Evolution of Useful Things (1992) and The Pencil (1989). Read full book review >

Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"An astute and independent observer's engrossing (albeit unsparing) perspectives on one of the 20th century's genuinely consequential enterprises. (illustrations, not seen)"
An evenhanded and informative history of Boeing, the American airframe manufacturer that bestrides the world of civil aviation like a colossus. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"In this revisionist text, Shapin offers a provocative new reading of a formative period in the history of science. (30 illustrations, not seen)"
A short but dense exposition arguing that there really wasn't a dramatic shift in how scholars went about discovering truth about the world in the 17th century. Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

"Trendy, but earnest and appealing as well."
An attempt to prove by scientific methods that the soul exists, by a physicist who has explored this terrain before, in The Eagle's Quest (1991) and The Dreaming Universe (1994). Read full book review >
FROM LUCY TO LANGUAGE by Donald Johanson
Released: Nov. 1, 1996

In one profusely illustrated volume, noted paleontologist Johanson (who discovered our earliest known ancestor, Lucy, as he recounted in his 1981 volume of that name) reviews all that is known about the origins and development of Homo sapiens. Read full book review >
SPERM WARS by Robin Baker
Released: Oct. 23, 1996

"Expect fireworks and rebuttals, but also serious consideration for the ideas expressed by someone bold enough to open the bedroom door."
Graphic, no-nonsense scenarios of human sexual behavior, and evolutionary biology as the framework for interpreting who did what to whom in a given scenario, are the hallmark of this extraordinary work by Univ. of Manchester (England) biologist Baker. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 21, 1996

"A sloppy, dissatisfying work from an author who has done better. (8 pages b&w photos, not seen)"
Wecht, a forensic pathologist and lawyer (Cause of Death, 1993), provides disappointingly little insight into some sensational trials and tragedies of recent years. Read full book review >
Released: Oct. 1, 1996

A somewhat disjointed but still thought-provoking examination of the ways in which American cities and towns make us bad citizens. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Fernanda Santos
author of THE FIRE LINE
May 17, 2016

When a bolt of lightning ignited a hilltop in the sleepy town of Yarnell, Arizona, in June 2013, setting off a blaze that would grow into one of the deadliest fires in American history, the 20 men who made up the Granite Mountain Hotshots sprang into action. New York Times writer Fernanda Santos’ debut book The Fire Line is the story of the fire and the Hotshots’ attempts to extinguish it. An elite crew trained to combat the most challenging wildfires, the Hotshots were a ragtag family, crisscrossing the American West and wherever else the fires took them. There's Eric Marsh, their devoted and demanding superintendent who turned his own personal demons into lessons he used to mold, train and guide his crew; Jesse Steed, their captain, a former Marine, a beast on the fire line and a family man who wasn’t afraid to say “I love you” to the firemen he led; Andrew Ashcraft, a team leader still in his 20s who struggled to balance his love for his beautiful wife and four children and his passion for fighting wildfires. We see this band of brothers at work, at play and at home, until a fire that burned in their own backyards leads to a national tragedy. View video >