Social Sciences Book Reviews

HISTORY
Released: Feb. 28, 2017

"There are countless kernels of amazing achievement and courage throughout this jam-packed, engaging history."
A history of the federal push to bolster women's rights from successive presidents since John F. Kennedy—and the resulting clashes with traditional conservative constituencies. Read full book review >
WISH LANTERNS by Alec Ash
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 7, 2017

"Sensitive, fascinating reports."
Novelistic anecdotes reveal Chinese young people struggling with universal themes of education, employment, and love. Read full book review >

TEETH by Mary Otto
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: March 14, 2017

"A focused, well-researched depiction of the dental industry's social and cultural relevance and its dire need for reform."
An astute examination of the complex, insular business of oral health care. Read full book review >
THE MOTHER OF ALL QUESTIONS by Rebecca Solnit
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: March 14, 2017

"As always, Solnit is eloquent and sharply insightful."
A distinguished cultural critic tackles "the binaries and boundaries of gender" while examining the continuing evolution of feminism. Read full book review >
UTOPIA FOR REALISTS by Rutger Bregman
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: March 14, 2017

"Raise the minimum wage? No. Give everyone a basic income, smash the machines, and work a couple of days per week—that's the ticket. A provocative pleasure to contemplate."
A spirited and practical manifesto for improving the odds of making a heaven on Earth. Read full book review >

NO ONE CARES ABOUT CRAZY PEOPLE by Ron Powers
HEALTH & MEDICINE
Released: March 21, 2017

"This hybrid narrative, enhanced by the author's considerable skills as a literary stylist, succeeds on every level."
Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Powers (Mark Twain: A Life, 2005, etc.) presents two searing sagas: an indictment of mental health care in the United States and the story of his two schizophrenic sons. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: March 21, 2017

"A compelling history of a nation grappling with the moral and legal freedoms that the founders strived to ensure."
Sexual expression, obscenity, contraception, and abortion are the focus of this wide-ranging legal, political, and social history. Read full book review >
A COLONY IN A NATION by Chris Hayes
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: March 21, 2017

"A timely and impassioned argument for social justice."
Profound contrasts in policing and incarceration reveal disparate Americas. Read full book review >
THE SEX EFFECT by Ross Benes
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: April 4, 2017

"A book marinated in provocative assertions that are certain to instigate debate and productive discussion."
A witty discussion of the indirect role sex plays across political, economic, religious, and cultural landscapes. Read full book review >
DOUBLE BIND by Robin Romm
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: April 11, 2017

"A thoughtfully provocative anthology."
Romm (MFA Program/Warren Wilson Coll.; The Mercy Papers: A Memoir of Three Weeks, 2009, etc.) gathers essays by successful women about the meaning of ambition in their lives. Read full book review >
THE GIVERS by David Callahan
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: April 11, 2017

"An eye-opening view of a vast sector of the economy that lies in the shadows but has undue influence, for ill or good."
Intriguing look at the world of big-ticket philanthropy, which shows promise of surpassing much governmental social-service spending in the near future. Read full book review >
DOWN THE UP STAIRCASE by Bruce D. Haynes
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: April 11, 2017

"A candid and profoundly personal contribution to America's racial history."
A family's story reflects social upheaval. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Kathleen Kent
author of THE DIME
February 20, 2017

Dallas, Texas is not for the faint of heart. Good thing for Betty Rhyzyk she's from a family of take-no-prisoners Brooklyn police detectives. But in Kathleen Kent’s new novel The Dime, her Big Apple wisdom will only get her so far when she relocates to The Big D, where Mexican drug cartels and cult leaders, deadbeat skells and society wives all battle for sunbaked turf. Betty is as tough as the best of them, but she's deeply shaken when her first investigation goes sideways. Battling a group of unruly subordinates, a persistent stalker, a formidable criminal organization, and an unsupportive girlfriend, the unbreakable Detective Betty Rhyzyk may be reaching her limit. “Violent, sexy, and completely absorbing,” our critic writes in a starred review. “Kent's detective is Sam Spade reincarnated—as a brilliant, modern woman.” View video >