Category Archives: Reviews

Book reviews, as well as Reads to Reels

Disaster by Choice

Disaster by Choice: How our Actions Turn Natural Hazards into Catastrophes© 2020 Ilan Kelman180 pages What makes a natural event — rising waters, a hurricane, a sudden slip of tectonic plates — a disaster? Human suffering — and Illan Kelman … Continue reading

Posted in Politics and Civic Interest, Reviews | Tagged , | 8 Comments

Camino Winds | Jesus the Son of Man

Amid a category 4 hurricane that levels homes and floods an entire town, a man is murdered. The police shake their heads, insisting he was merely struck by storm debris. But falling limbs don’t leave blood splatter inside a home … Continue reading

Posted in Religion and Philosophy, Reviews | Tagged , , , , | 4 Comments

The Last Stargazers

The Last Stargazer: The Enduring Story of Astronomy’s Vanishing Explorers© 2020 Emily Levesque336 pages Emily Levesque was drawn to the stars from childhood on. Having realized her dream of studying them for a living, in The Last Stargazers she offers … Continue reading

Posted in Reviews, science | Tagged , | 6 Comments

Cold Sassy Tree

Cold Sassy Tree© 1984 Olive Ann Burns391 pages “I know now the difference between a writer and an author. A  writer writes, and an author speaks.”   Those words came from Leaving Cold Sassy, an unfinished sequel to this work … Continue reading

Posted in Classics and Literary, Reviews | Tagged , | 4 Comments

Death and madness in China

The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History© 2016 Frank Dikotter433 pages In twenty-five years of reading history, I know of no man who has instigated more human suffering and death at a broader scale than Mao Tse-tung, the rebel turned architect … Continue reading

Posted in history, Reviews | Tagged , , , | 13 Comments

The Lost Classics

The Lost Classics© ed. Jim Casada1950s-60s pieces by Robert Ruark from Field & Stream and other magazines260 pages A hunt for southern literature outside the Faulkner/O’Connor domain brought me to the happy surprise that was The Old Man and the … Continue reading

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Double play: Mobile & Latin America

This past week has seen a little progress on the ol’ TBR front, as I knocked out three books from the list, including The Network and those below. First up was E.O. Wilson’s Why We Are Here: Mobile and the … Continue reading

Posted in history, Reviews, World Affairs | Tagged , , , , | 15 Comments

The Network

The Network: The Battle for the Airwaves and the Birth of the Communications Age© 2015 Scottt Woolley280 pages Few things fascinate me as much as cities in the United States and Europe, circa 1880 – 1930: they were being remade … Continue reading

Posted in history, Reviews | Tagged , | 6 Comments

The Bird Way

The Bird Way: A New Look at How Birds Talk, Work, Play, Parent, and Think© 2020 Jennifer Ackerman368 pages When reading an introduction to a book on anthropology, one can’t help but be impressed by the variety of human cultures: … Continue reading

Posted in Reviews, science | Tagged , | 8 Comments

The Miracle of New Orleans

Andrew Jackson and the Miracle of New Orleans 2017 Brian Kilmeade256 pages I know precious little about the war of 1812, saved that it involved the United States invading Canada, D.C. being burned, and….something about New Orleans? That ….something is … Continue reading

Posted in history | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments