An uplifting and resounding ovation.

QUEEN BEY

A CELEBRATION OF THE POWER AND CREATIVITY OF BEYONCÉ KNOWLES-CARTER

A diverse chorus of voices praises the acclaimed songstress and cultural icon.

Chambers (The Go-Between, 2017, etc.), the editor of the New York Times archival storytelling team, who, in addition to her own books, has co-authored books by Michael Strahan, Timbaland, Robin Roberts, Eric Ripert, and Marcus Samuelsson, collects essays from distinguished professionals in entertainment, media, and social activism. In an introduction celebrating the “fire in her belly, the almost otherworldly level of focus and ambition in her eyes,” Chambers lauds Beyoncé’s “soundtrack of power and possibility,” which buoyed the editor through unexpected life changes. Nigerian author and speaker Luvvie Ajayi rhapsodizes over the singer’s immense cultural influence and celebrates her memorable, career-defining performance at the 2018 Coachella Festival. Data journalist Meredith Broussard’s graphic biography of “Bey” vividly combines art and geographical statistics. The perspectives Chambers assembles are delightfully manifold and aptly representative of Beyoncé as a veteran entertainer and an influential cultural icon transcending age and social status. YouTube sensation Kid Fury commends Beyoncé on how much her inclusive productions have consistently impacted the gay community. Other contributors examine Beyoncé’s referential, allusive artistry, her evolving feminism, her Instagram account, and career comparisons to the upper echelon of female rappers, and there are fair-minded criticisms of her “Formation” and “Lemonade” albums. Collectively, these well-balanced essays amplify the popularity and reach of Beyoncé’s music and persona across generations of women (and men). The anthology closes with award-winning journalist Caroline Clarke attesting that while perfectionism can be a common trap for girls, when it is applied to superstars like Beyoncé, it makes her “a pretty damn good role model for my daughter or anyone, including me.” With such a dynamic ensemble of opinions and reflections, the collection will be sweet reading not just for Beyoncé’s superfans, but also for activists, feminists, and budding vocalists.

An uplifting and resounding ovation.

Pub Date: March 5, 2019

ISBN: 978-1-250-20052-5

Page Count: 240

Publisher: St. Martin's

Review Posted Online: Dec. 9, 2018

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2019

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

THE 48 LAWS OF POWER

The authors have created a sort of anti-Book of Virtues in this encyclopedic compendium of the ways and means of power.

Everyone wants power and everyone is in a constant duplicitous game to gain more power at the expense of others, according to Greene, a screenwriter and former editor at Esquire (Elffers, a book packager, designed the volume, with its attractive marginalia). We live today as courtiers once did in royal courts: we must appear civil while attempting to crush all those around us. This power game can be played well or poorly, and in these 48 laws culled from the history and wisdom of the world’s greatest power players are the rules that must be followed to win. These laws boil down to being as ruthless, selfish, manipulative, and deceitful as possible. Each law, however, gets its own chapter: “Conceal Your Intentions,” “Always Say Less Than Necessary,” “Pose as a Friend, Work as a Spy,” and so on. Each chapter is conveniently broken down into sections on what happened to those who transgressed or observed the particular law, the key elements in this law, and ways to defensively reverse this law when it’s used against you. Quotations in the margins amplify the lesson being taught. While compelling in the way an auto accident might be, the book is simply nonsense. Rules often contradict each other. We are told, for instance, to “be conspicuous at all cost,” then told to “behave like others.” More seriously, Greene never really defines “power,” and he merely asserts, rather than offers evidence for, the Hobbesian world of all against all in which he insists we live. The world may be like this at times, but often it isn’t. To ask why this is so would be a far more useful project.

If the authors are serious, this is a silly, distasteful book. If they are not, it’s a brilliant satire.

Pub Date: Sept. 1, 1998

ISBN: 0-670-88146-5

Page Count: 430

Publisher: Viking

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: July 15, 1998

Did you like this book?

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

Did you like this book?

more