Social Sciences Book Reviews (page 628)

RACE MATTERS by Cornel West
NON-FICTION
Released: April 29, 1993

"Aiming at accessibility, West perhaps too much curtails his customary intellectual range; but with clear thinking and sensible analysis being in short supply these days, his words are welcome nonetheless."
In essays that challenge the nature of racial discourse in America, the director of Princeton's Afro-American Studies program, professor of religion, and self-described ``intellectual freedom- fighter'' calls for moral regeneration and profound social change. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: April 29, 1993

"A powerful yet evenhanded indictment. (Photographs)"
A courageous examination of the moral failures of the Arab world, by the man who, as ``Samir al-Khalil,'' wrote perhaps the best book on modern Iraq, Republic of Fear (1989). Read full book review >

NON-FICTION
Released: April 28, 1993

"Despite its flaws: a landmark portrait of small-town America."
A remarkable, often poignant—but never sentimental—chronicle from a historian (University of Connecticut; America's Business, 1984, etc.) and his wife of life as it once was in their small Connecticut hometown of Hammond. Read full book review >
MOTHER'S LETTERS by Elizabeth Hampsten
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 23, 1993

A graceful meditation on the often unsuspected family legacies ``that somehow make up the landscape that identifies who one might be.'' Hampsten (English/University of North Dakota) was especially pleased when, after the death of her mother (Elizabeth Lockwood) in 1979, her father handed her a hatbox of letters Lockwood had written to her own parents. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: April 21, 1993

"Both a warm tribute to a lost friend and a cool argument by an experienced opponent of euthanasia—although it leaves many difficult questions unanswered. (Photographs)"
When Ann Humphry, estranged wife of Derek Humphry (executive director of the Hemlock Society and author of the bestselling Final Exit), committed suicide in 1991, her farewell note asked Marker, an articulate and prominent spokesperson for antieuthanasia forces, to tell her story. Read full book review >

SECOND WIFE, SECOND LIFE! by Marjorie Holmes
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 20, 1993

"A treat for Holmes fans and, for those less taken with the inspirational subtext, a realistic yet upbeat account of love and marriage in the sunset years."
From the popular octogenarian columnist and inspirational author (The Messiah, 1987, etc.): a moving and refreshingly candid account of her second marriage. Read full book review >
SARAH ORNE JEWETT by Elizabeth Silverthorne
NON-FICTION
Released: April 20, 1993

"But since Jewett's life seems not to have been complicated by intrinsically compelling drama, Silverthorne's failure to capture her personality and sensibility is a fatal lack. (Photographs)"
Lackluster biography of the turn-of-the-century New England writer whose independent, unmarried women characters and ecological consciousness have stirred some contemporary interest. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 19, 1993

Like the two previous volumes from these collaborators (The King Within and The Warrior Within, both 1992), this one urges men to take control of their lives and to enjoy the knowledge within, in this case by emphasizing mastery of the culture's power, imagination, and technology—a stimulating prospect undermined by graceless writing. Read full book review >
THE FIFTIES by Brett Harvey
NON-FICTION
Released: April 17, 1993

"Harvey is a talented writer with an eye for detail and anecdote, but her study is narrow, often stereotyped, and lacks the diversity, surprise, and range of oral history at its best."
Freelance journalist Harvey (The Village Voice, etc.) half- successfully orchestrates a number of women's ``coming of age'' memories of the 50's, highlighting the restrictions and penalties these mostly middle-class, bright, urban, East Coast women endured. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: April 16, 1993

"But America is more than its fringe, and Codrescu, with his yen for the bohemian and the bizarre, never quite uncovers the land's expansive, mainstream heart. (Seventy-four b&w photographs—some seen)"
Romanian-born poet, professor (English/LSU), and NPR commentator Codrescu (The Hole in the Flag, 1991, etc.) drives from East Coast to West, nosing into the sort of lovably wacky Americana that's made the comparable dispatches of fellow wheelman/writer Charles Kuralt so popular. Read full book review >
NON-FICTION
Released: April 14, 1993

"A pioneering work."
A fascinating, accessible, and meticulous piece of scholarship, this study of changing conceptions of manhood breaks new ground in uncovering the internal struggles and shifting paradigms that have informed American men's understanding of themselves. Read full book review >
GENIE by Russ Rymer
NON-FICTION
Released: April 14, 1993

"An eye-opening account of science gone awry and a life gone amiss."
A compelling account by journalist Rymer (The New Yorker, The New York Times, etc.) of a modern-day ``wild child'' so deprived of human contact that when she was found at age 13 she was virtually without language—making her a prize subject for scientific study. 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 >