Social Sciences Book Reviews (page 9)

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 19, 2016

"Readers in Texas—and even nationally—who want change should pay attention and get started on the author's to-do lists. She knows the territory, and she wants it back."
How to change the political landscape in Texas, "the reddest of the red-hot states, covered by a big bubble that protects the most reactionary, radical, and rabid set of officeholders that much of the country has ever seen." Read full book review >
THE <i>DEFENDER</i> by Ethan Michaeli
HISTORY
Released: Jan. 12, 2016

"A pertinent, well-fashioned American success saga."
This chronicle of the influential black Chicago newspaper simultaneously tracks the important issues pertaining to African-American history from the turn of the 19th century. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 12, 2016

"Though Zoepf demonstrates a few instances of how 'small reform turns out to be even more transformational than its most devoted proponents could have predicted,' the evolving 'personal agency' she witnessed is almost too subtle (yet) to be perceived."
New America Foundation fellow Zoepf attempts to make "the case for small gestures" by extremely circumscribed Arab women. Read full book review >
THE CONFIDENCE GAME by Maria Konnikova
PSYCHOLOGY
Released: Jan. 12, 2016

"With meticulous research and a facility for storytelling, Konnikova makes this intriguing topic absolutely riveting."
What makes a con artist, and why are we duped by them? New Yorker columnist Konnikova (Mastermind: How to Think Like Sherlock Holmes, 2013) takes us deeply into the art and psychology of the con game.Read full book review >
FAKE MISSED CONNECTIONS by Brett Fletcher Lauer
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 12, 2016

"During his journey through online dating, Lauer offered women 'the illusion that [they] could understand me,' which he extends to readers as well."
The tale of how the author's wife's infidelity sent him into the brave new world of Internet dating. Read full book review >

DEMOCRACY IN BLACK by Eddie S. Glaude Jr.
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 12, 2016

"A powerful and thoughtful call for 'a revolution of value and a radical democratic awakening' aimed at ending America's persistent racial crisis."
Glaude (Chair, African American Studies/Princeton Univ.; African American Religion: A Very Short Introduction, 2014, etc.) explores the worsening state of racial inequality under the nation's first black president.Read full book review >
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A somewhat superficial yet entertaining romp."
Where to find innovators. Read full book review >
CITY OF THORNS by Ben Rawlence
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A significant, timely, and gloomy tale that reveals the human costs of a growing world crisis."
Former Human Rights Watch researcher Rawlence (Radio Congo: Signals of Hope from Africa's Deadliest War, 2012) tells the distressing story of Kenya's vast Dadaab refugee camp, where nearly 500,000 people fleeing civil war in nearby Somalia live in a "teeming ramshackle metropolis" the size of Atlanta.Read full book review >
IN THE SLENDER MARGIN by Eve Joseph
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A literate, free-association meditation on the final fact of life."
A fine blend of memoir, contemplation, and reporting by a woman who spent more than 20 years as a counselor in a Victoria, British Columbia, hospice. Read full book review >
BROAD INFLUENCE by Jay Newton-Small
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"A cogent argument for gender parity and a revealing look at cultural change."
How women effect change once they reach a critical mass. Read full book review >
BEEN THERE, DONE THAT by Al Roker
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Jan. 5, 2016

"Sincere stories of life as working parents who value family above all else."
Well-known journalists Roker (The Storm of the Century: Tragedy, Heroism, Survival, and the Epic True Story of America's Deadliest Natural Disaster: The Great Gulf Hurricane of 1900, 2015, etc.) and Roberts team up to bring readers an intimate look into their family life.Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 4, 2016

"A passionate, intensely engaging portrait of the group's initial mission, as well as the terrible personal lifelong toll the struggle took."
A new look at the injustice visited on a group of African-American high school students engaged in the battle for desegregation in the public schools. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Frances Stroh
author of BEER MONEY
May 6, 2016

Frances Stroh’s earliest memories are ones of great privilege: shopping trips to London and New York, lunches served by black-tied waiters at the Regency Hotel, and a house filled with precious antiques, which she was forbidden to touch. Established in Detroit in 1850, by 1984 the Stroh Brewing Company had become the largest private beer fortune in America and a brand emblematic of the American dream itself; while Stroh was coming of age, the Stroh family fortune was estimated to be worth $700 million. But behind the beautiful façade lay a crumbling foundation. As their fortune dissolved in little over a decade, the family was torn apart internally by divorce and one family member's drug bust; disagreements over the management of the business; and disputes over the remaining money they possessed. “The author’s family might have successfully burned through a massive fortune, but they squandered a lot more than that,” our reviewer writes about Stroh’s debut memoir, Beer Money. “A sorrowful, eye-opening examination of familial dysfunction.” View video >