An early, vivid re-creation. Readers seeking great depth and understanding will have to look elsewhere.

UNPRECEDENTED

THE ELECTION THAT CHANGED EVERYTHING

CNN’s photo-and-text account of the 2016 presidential election.

Appropriately oversized to embrace a larger-than-life, over-the-top story, this profusely illustrated, sometimes-insightful, blow-by-blow account captures all the highlights of the election year, from the primaries to the party conventions and debates to the election of Donald Trump. CNN politics writer Lake’s well-written narrative, interspersed with contributions by more than a dozen correspondents, analysts, and commentators, reflects the same “all in” approach the network took to its televised coverage. “One of the things we did was to ‘event-ize’ the major days and nights,” writes CNN Worldwide President Jeff Zucker, with pride. “Whether it was a debate, a town hall, a primary night, or the conventions, our approach was the same. Cover them as big events to let the audience know they are important….That added a degree of energy and excitement to our programs, while never getting in the way of our news-gathering, our analysis, or our interviews.” The same hyperbolic view of a surreal election permeates these pages, which read like a graphic portrait of a major traffic accident rather than the “ultimate keepsake” (as described by the publisher) of an election to remember. Fully exploiting the event’s P.T. Barnum–esque aspects, the book offers few pleasing thoughts for remembrance: not Trump’s “blunt, bigoted language,” not Hillary Clinton’s “predilection for secrecy,” and not the other, dull members of the Republican primary field, who displayed “too much common decency.” The election, says CNN presidential historian David Brinkley, was “an overproduced race to the gutter.” Lake writes, “the media covered Trump relentlessly, because he was accessible, newsworthy and usually good for some outrage, which drove up clicks and ratings.” The most revealing moments are downers, as when Asian-American reporter M.J. Lee described the “off-color remarks” she encountered about her ethnicity when covering Trump rallies.

An early, vivid re-creation. Readers seeking great depth and understanding will have to look elsewhere.

Pub Date: Dec. 6, 2016

ISBN: 978-1-59591-096-7

Page Count: 288

Publisher: Melcher Media

Review Posted Online: Dec. 14, 2016

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However charily one should apply the word, a beautiful book, an unconditionally involving memoir for our time or any time.

I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS

Maya Angelou is a natural writer with an inordinate sense of life and she has written an exceptional autobiographical narrative which retrieves her first sixteen years from "the general darkness just beyond the great blinkers of childhood."

Her story is told in scenes, ineluctably moving scenes, from the time when she and her brother were sent by her fancy living parents to Stamps, Arkansas, and a grandmother who had the local Store. Displaced they were and "If growing up is painful for the Southern Black girl, being aware of her displacement is the rust on the razor that threatens the throat." But alternating with all the pain and terror (her rape at the age of eight when in St. Louis With her mother) and humiliation (a brief spell in the kitchen of a white woman who refused to remember her name) and fear (of a lynching—and the time they buried afflicted Uncle Willie under a blanket of vegetables) as well as all the unanswered and unanswerable questions, there are affirmative memories and moments: her charming brother Bailey; her own "unshakable God"; a revival meeting in a tent; her 8th grade graduation; and at the end, when she's sixteen, the birth of a baby. Times When as she says "It seemed that the peace of a day's ending was an assurance that the covenant God made with children, Negroes and the crippled was still in effect."

However charily one should apply the word, a beautiful book, an unconditionally involving memoir for our time or any time.

Pub Date: Feb. 1, 1969

ISBN: 0375507892

Page Count: 235

Publisher: Random House

Review Posted Online: May 14, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 1, 1969

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A Churchill-ian view of native history—Ward, that is, not Winston—its facts filtered through a dense screen of ideology.

AN INDIGENOUS PEOPLES' HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES

Custer died for your sins. And so, this book would seem to suggest, did every other native victim of colonialism.

Inducing guilt in non-native readers would seem to be the guiding idea behind Dunbar-Ortiz’s (Emerita, Ethnic Studies/California State Univ., Hayward; Blood on the Border: A Memoir of the Contra War, 2005, etc.) survey, which is hardly a new strategy. Indeed, the author says little that hasn’t been said before, but she packs a trove of ideological assumptions into nearly every page. For one thing, while “Indian” isn’t bad, since “[i]ndigenous individuals and peoples in North America on the whole do not consider ‘Indian’ a slur,” “American” is due to the fact that it’s “blatantly imperialistic.” Just so, indigenous peoples were overwhelmed by a “colonialist settler-state” (the very language broadly applied to Israelis vis-à-vis the Palestinians today) and then “displaced to fragmented reservations and economically decimated”—after, that is, having been forced to live in “concentration camps.” Were he around today, Vine Deloria Jr., the always-indignant champion of bias-puncturing in defense of native history, would disavow such tidily packaged, ready-made, reflexive language. As it is, the readers who are likely to come to this book—undergraduates, mostly, in survey courses—probably won’t question Dunbar-Ortiz’s inaccurate assertion that the military phrase “in country” derives from the military phrase “Indian country” or her insistence that all Spanish people in the New World were “gold-obsessed.” Furthermore, most readers won’t likely know that some Ancestral Pueblo (for whom Dunbar-Ortiz uses the long-abandoned term “Anasazi”) sites show evidence of cannibalism and torture, which in turn points to the inconvenient fact that North America wasn’t entirely an Eden before the arrival of Europe.

A Churchill-ian view of native history—Ward, that is, not Winston—its facts filtered through a dense screen of ideology.

Pub Date: Sept. 16, 2014

ISBN: 978-0-8070-0040-3

Page Count: 296

Publisher: Beacon Press

Review Posted Online: Aug. 18, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15, 2014

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