Science & Technology Book Reviews

IMPROBABLE DESTINIES by Jonathan B.  Losos
Released: Aug. 8, 2017

"A cheerful, delightfully lucid primer on evolution and the predictive possibilities within the field."
A fresh take on evolution and how "we can study [it] as it occurs, right before our eyes." Read full book review >
LIFE IN CODE by Ellen Ullman
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Aug. 8, 2017

"What Anthony Bourdain did for chefs, Ullman does for computer geeks. A fine rejoinder and update to Doug Coupland's Microserfs and of great interest to any computer user."
A sharply written, politically charged memoir of life in the data trenches by computer pioneer Ullman (By Blood, 2012, etc.). Read full book review >

Released: July 31, 2017

"An exciting history of the second great breakthrough of 21st-century physics."
A fascinating story of astronomy that represents "the culmination of a century-long quest and the starting point for a completely new chapter in our exploration of the universe." Read full book review >
EVERYTHING ALL AT ONCE by Bill Nye
Released: July 11, 2017

"Just the vade mecum for the smart teenager in the family and eminently pleasing reading for grown-up nerds as well."
Bow-tied nerd superhero Nye (Unstoppable: Harnessing Science to Change the World, 2015, etc.) serves up a tasty combination of memoir and manifesto. Read full book review >
OPEN HEART by Stephen   Westaby
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: June 20, 2017

"Not without some gore but required reading for medical students and hospital-show junkies but also for anyone curious to learn about hearts and the heroic measures to save them."
A first-rate memoir from a British heart surgeon. Read full book review >

NON-FICTION
Released: June 13, 2017

"An important book about a major scientific advance but not for the faint of heart. Readers not up to speed on high school biology should prepare themselves with a good popular primer on DNA, such as Matthew Cobb's Life's Greatest Secret (2015)."
A pair of biochemists offer a fresh examination of the "newest and arguably most effective genetic-engineering tool." Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: June 6, 2017

"The best sort of science history, explaining not only how great men made great discoveries, but why equally great men, trapped by prejudices and what seemed to be plain common sense, missed what was in front of their noses."
A history of the "search for the solution to the sex and conception mystery," focused on the period between 1650 and 1900. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: May 9, 2017

"An encyclopedic reference for researchers and practitioners but also accessible for general readers due to Rosen's lively depiction of the people, places, and politics that color the history of the fight against infectious disease."
A richly documented history of the rise—and threatened future—of antibiotics. Read full book review >
BEHAVE by Robert M. Sapolsky
NON-FICTION
Released: May 2, 2017

"An exemplary work of popular science, challenging but accessible."
A wide-ranging, learned survey of all the making-us-tick things that, for better or worse, define us as human. Read full book review >
WE ARE DATA by John  Cheney-Lippold
NON-FICTION
Released: May 2, 2017

"Essential reading for anyone who cares about the internet's extraordinary impact on each of us and on our society."
How algorithms shape our lives online. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: May 2, 2017

"Thoughtful reading for anyone interested in human and machine cognition and a must for chess fans."
Former world chess champion and human rights activist Kasparov (Winter Is Coming: Why Vladimir Putin and the Enemies of the Free World Must Be Stopped, 2015, etc.) offers an optimistic view of humankind's relationship with machines. Read full book review >
CHINA LAKE by Barret  Baumgart
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: May 1, 2017

"Nearly indescribable and utterly engrossing, this book is an urgent and terrifying cultural reflection, a startling look in the mirror."
A unique, alarming portrayal of the American military-industrial complex, the crisis of climate change, and the nature of truth and despair. 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 >