No matter where readers are on the political spectrum, this light biography is a tantalizing look into the life of a man who...

ROGER AILES

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A chatty look into the life and motivations of Fox News founder Roger Ailes.

Fans of Ailes will recognize many of the incidents related in Chafets’ (Rush Limbaugh: An Army of One, 2010, etc.) authorized biography. However, for those unfamiliar with Ailes’ story, the author’s narrative traverses his childhood, his early career experiences, his keen political intuitions, and his shrewd understanding of the cable-news business and its role in our media-saturated society. Ailes quickly grasped that personality would drive ratings on cable news. “He realized that it isn’t like broadcast news, an hour or two a day,” explained an Ailes colleague. “It’s a twenty-four-hour operation, which means that a good part of it has to be about opinions.” Once Rupert Murdock hired Ailes and he assembled his news team, Fox News began its ascent. Chafets flushes out his portrait of Ailes through an amalgam of individuals who offer vignettes and quotes describing the Ailes personality, business style and media matters, from their vantage point within or outside of his sphere of influence. Ailes’ conservative stance is well-known, but the author offers a list of Ailes’ liberal friends, including members of the Kennedy clan, Chris Cuomo, a CNN journalist and son of the former governor of New York, civil rights leader Jesse Jackson and Dennis Kucinich, “the longtime darling of the progressive wing of the Democratic Party.” Ailes hired Doug Kennedy, a reporter and the youngest son of Bobby Kennedy, to work at Fox. “What people don’t understand is that Roger is very comfortable with others who don’t agree with him,” Kennedy explains. “He knows what he believes and says it—Roger never talks for effect—and we go out to lunch and really go at it. All he asks is that you be real with him in return.”

No matter where readers are on the political spectrum, this light biography is a tantalizing look into the life of a man who altered the TV-news landscape.

Pub Date: March 19, 2013

ISBN: 978-1-59523-095-9

Page Count: 272

Publisher: Sentinel

Review Posted Online: May 4, 2013

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 15, 2013

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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

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A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor...

INTO THE WILD

The excruciating story of a young man on a quest for knowledge and experience, a search that eventually cooked his goose, told with the flair of a seasoned investigative reporter by Outside magazine contributing editor Krakauer (Eiger Dreams, 1990). 

Chris McCandless loved the road, the unadorned life, the Tolstoyan call to asceticism. After graduating college, he took off on another of his long destinationless journeys, this time cutting all contact with his family and changing his name to Alex Supertramp. He was a gent of strong opinions, and he shared them with those he met: "You must lose your inclination for monotonous security and adopt a helter-skelter style of life''; "be nomadic.'' Ultimately, in 1992, his terms got him into mortal trouble when he ran up against something—the Alaskan wild—that didn't give a hoot about Supertramp's worldview; his decomposed corpse was found 16 weeks after he entered the bush. Many people felt McCandless was just a hubris-laden jerk with a death wish (he had discarded his map before going into the wild and brought no food but a bag of rice). Krakauer thought not. Admitting an interest that bordered on obsession, he dug deep into McCandless's life. He found a willful, reckless, moody boyhood; an ugly little secret that sundered the relationship between father and son; a moral absolutism that agitated the young man's soul and drove him to extremes; but he was no more a nutcase than other pilgrims. Writing in supple, electric prose, Krakauer tries to make sense of McCandless (while scrupulously avoiding off-the-rack psychoanalysis): his risky behavior and the rites associated with it, his asceticism, his love of wide open spaces, the flights of his soul.

A wonderful page-turner written with humility, immediacy, and great style. Nothing came cheap and easy to McCandless, nor will it to readers of Krakauer's narrative. (4 maps) (First printing of 35,000; author tour)

Pub Date: Jan. 1, 1996

ISBN: 0-679-42850-X

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Villard

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 1995

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