True Crime Book Reviews

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: March 24, 2015

"An earnest, eye-opening, important account for Western readers."
A brave, excoriating exposé of the systematic ruination of resource-rich countries of Africa, leaving "penury and strife" for its millions of inhabitants. Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Feb. 3, 2015

"A meticulously detailed feat of rare footage inside the DPRK's propaganda machinery."
Exhaustively researched, highly engrossing chronicle of the outrageous abduction of a pair of well-known South Korean filmmakers by the nefarious network of North Korea's Kim Jong-Il. Read full book review >

BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Nov. 28, 2014

"Weaving a tale that is simultaneously about race, failed systems, money, sex, family and simple rage, Safran truly did lose a year in Mississippi, and getting lost with him is a joy."
A murdered white supremacist sparks a remarkable investigation that is anything but straightforward. Read full book review >
TOO BIG TO JAIL by Brandon L. Garrett
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Nov. 1, 2014

"Garrett combines groundbreaking research with clear writing and moral outrage."
Garrett (Law/Univ. of Virginia; Convicting the Innocent: Where Criminal Prosecutions Go Wrong, 2011, etc.) presents research on criminal behavior by corporations in the United States and overseas. Read full book review >
JUST MERCY by Bryan Stevenson
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Oct. 21, 2014

"Emotionally profound, necessary reading."
A distinguished NYU law professor and MacArthur grant recipient offers the compelling story of the legal practice he founded to protect the rights of people on the margins of American society. Read full book review >

CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 23, 2014

"Comprehensive research underlies this compelling, highly emotional and profoundly important story."
A novelist and Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times reporter explores with nearly Javert-ian persistence one of the early cases of traffic fatalities caused by texting while driving.
Read full book review >
THE WRONG CARLOS by James S. Liebman
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: July 8, 2014

"Death penalty opponents now have a definitive example to cite; death penalty proponents have an agonizing case to consider."
A Columbia Law School professor and some of his students gather and present evidence establishing the innocence of Carlos DeLuna, executed for murder in Texas in 1989. Read full book review >
BLOOD BROTHERHOODS by John Dickie
HISTORY
Released: April 8, 2014

"These 'men of honor' and 'lads with attitude' created their own myths. Until Dickie's revelatory book, most believed them."
Call them Camorra, 'Ndrangheta or Mafia: All of these "honored societies" emerged from the dirty politics of Italian unification. Dickie's (Italian Studies/Univ. College, London; Delizia! The Epic History of Italians and Their Food, 2007, etc.) absorbing history of the Italian mob makes The Godfather look like a fairy tale. Read full book review >
ENTERTAINMENT & SPORTS
Released: April 8, 2014

"A comprehensive, illuminating and highly readable study of a notorious episode in the annals of the American justice system."
Vanity Fair contributing editor and Duke University alumnus Cohan (Money and Power: How Goldman Sachs Came to Rule the World, 2011) turns a microscopic lens on the 2006 scandal involving an alleged rape by members of the school's lacrosse team. Read full book review >
THE MASTER OF CONFESSIONS by Thierry Cruvellier
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: March 18, 2014

"Cruvellier is an extremely articulate and compassionate observer to a country and its people plunged through the rings of hell."
With chilling clarity, a veteran international journalist delineates the totalitarian ideology and horrific crimes of the leaders of Cambodia's Khmer Rouge. Read full book review >
BLOOD ROYAL by Eric Jager
HISTORY
Released: Feb. 25, 2014

"An impressive combination of mystery, crime story, and social and political history."
Few works of fiction will grab readers' attention as well as Jager's (The Last Duel: A True Story of Crime, Scandal, and Trial by Combat in Medieval France, 2004) riveting story of a 1407 murder mystery that split the royal family of France. Read full book review >
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Jan. 27, 2014

"Prodigious research and fierce affection illumine every remarkable page."
The Great Gatsby floats on a limpid river fed by myriads of autobiographical, cultural and historical tributaries. Read full book review >
Kirkus Interview
Fatima Bhutto
April 14, 2015

Set during the American invasion of Afghanistan, Fatima Bhutto’s debut novel The Shadow of the Crescent Moon begins and ends one rain-swept Friday morning in Mir Ali, a small town in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas close to the Afghan border. Three brothers meet for breakfast. Soon after, the eldest, Aman Erum, recently returned from America, hails a taxi to the local mosque. Sikandar, a doctor, drives to the hospital where he works, but must first stop to collect his troubled wife, who has not joined the family that morning. No one knows where Mina goes these days. But when, later in the morning, the two are taken hostage by members of the Taliban, Mina will prove to be stronger than anyone could have imagined. Our reviewer writes that The Shadow of the Crescent Moon is “a timely, earnest portrait of a family torn apart by the machinations of other people’s war games and desperately trying to survive.” View video >