2015 Nominees: nonfiction (page 5)

SHOWDOWN by Wil Haygood
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 16, 2015

"An intensely readable, fully explored account of what the New York Times called an 'ordeal by committee,' an important hinge in American history."
Longtime journalist and biographer Haygood (The Butler: A Witness to History, 2013, etc.), whose previous subjects have included Sammy Davis Jr., Sugar Ray Robinson, and Adam Clayton Powell Jr., examines the confirmation battle over the first African-American nominated to the Supreme Court.Read full book review >
A STRANGE BUSINESS by James Hamilton
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"A fascinating, consistently entertaining exploration into the exploding business of 19th-century art."
A noted historian weaves a brilliantly colorful tapestry. Read full book review >
ROAD TRIP by Mark Rozema
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"A brief but impressive debut collection."
A series of essays delicately evoking nature's power and mystery. Read full book review >
EMPIRE OF FEAR by Andrew Hosken
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"A tremendously useful, insightful study of the frightening spread of a culture of death."
An exploration of the spreading terror of the self-proclaimed new caliphate. Read full book review >
LET THERE BE WATER by Seth M. Siegel
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"A major contribution to this hotly debated issue and to broader questions of environmental policy.
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An in-depth report on how Israel has combined technological innovation with conservation to achieve a water surplus at home and become a world leader in water management. Read full book review >
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"Bikont's fearless research—she even confronted the brothers known to have led the Jedwabne murders—makes this a fantastic book. It was first published in Poland in 2004, and the European Book Prize it won in 2011 (for the French version) should be only the first of many awards for this significant work."
Polish journalist Bikont (editor: And I Still See Their Faces: Images of Polish Jews, 1996) delivers a daring exposure of the crimes of her countrymen in the first week of July 1941.Read full book review >
CURRENT AFFAIRS
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"Shane's reporting is superb, and the way he frames the public policy debate makes the narrative compelling from start to finish."
New York Times national security reporter Shane compares and contrasts the trajectories of President Barack Obama and Anwar al-Awlaki, the American citizen residing in Yemen whom Obama ordered to be killed by a drone. Read full book review >
SCIENCE & TECHNOLOGY
Released: Sept. 15, 2015

"A fascinating account of extreme efforts to stave off extinction, the ethics of these efforts, and an unsettling, not-terribly-optimistic analysis of their chances of success."
Everyone sympathizes with endangered species, and few object to traditional conservation measures (limits on hunting, habitat preservation) that work—but they don't work if habitats disappear or if numbers dwindle or vanish entirely. Radical measures are necessary, writes journalist O'Connor. Read full book review >
AFGHAN MODERN by Robert D. Crews
HISTORY
Released: Sept. 14, 2015

"An impressively thinking-outside-of-the-box approach to reconsidering this pivotal Asian nation and its people."
A fresh look at the Afghans that discards old legends and stereotypes and characterizes the people as tremendously mobile and cosmopolitan. Read full book review >
PAID FOR by Rachel Moran
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 8, 2015

"Moran's thoughtful, highly readable, and provocative treatise shines a necessary light on a dark and underdiscussed topic."
Leaving her Dublin home and dysfunctional family at 14, Moran became homeless before she turned to prostitution to survive. Her stirring memoir chronicles her seven-year journey on the streets and in the brothels and examines the costs to society and her soul. Read full book review >
THE INVENTION OF NATURE by Andrea Wulf
BIOGRAPHY & MEMOIR
Released: Sept. 8, 2015

"Humboldt was the Einstein of the 19th century but far more widely read, and Wulf successfully combines a biography with an intoxicating history of his times."
Engrossing biography of "a visionary, a thinker far ahead of his time," who "revolutionized the way we see the natural world." Read full book review >
MYSTERIES OF THE MALL by Witold Rybczynski
ESSAYS & ANTHOLOGIES
Released: Sept. 8, 2015

"A superb book for those interested in architectural history, written in an easygoing style by a man with encyclopedic knowledge and an obvious great love for building."
In this illuminating collection of essays, Rybczynski (Emeritus, Architecture/Univ. of Pennsylvania; How Architecture Works, 2013, etc.) documents the wide-ranging effects of the men who built America in the 20th century.Read full book review >

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ABOUT THE KIRKUS PRIZE

The Kirkus Prize is one of the richest literary awards in the world, with a prize of $50,000 bestowed annually to authors of fiction, nonfiction and young readers’ literature. It was created to celebrate the 81 years of discerning, thoughtful criticism Kirkus Reviews has contributed to both the publishing industry and readers at large. Books that earned the Kirkus Star with publication dates between November 1, 2014, and October 31, 2015 (see FAQ for exceptions), are automatically nominated for the 2015 Kirkus Prize, and the winners will be selected on October 15, 2015, by an esteemed panel composed of nationally respected writers and highly regarded booksellers, librarians and Kirkus critics.