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October 22, 2014
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Mea Culpa, That’s My Gun

In “The Shadow World,” Andrew Feinstein gives us perhaps the most comprehensive account of the global arms trade ever written, an industry in which the supreme ideology is greed.

Posted on Nov 11, 2011 READ MORE


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In Sickness and in Health

Pulitzer Prize winner Jeffrey Eugenides’ third novel, “The Marriage Plot,” set in 1982 at Brown University, is his attempt to “traffic in the same ideas” as Jane Austen and Henry James, with some social satire and meta-fiction mixed in.

Posted on Nov 4, 2011 READ MORE



Sincerely, Sam Beckett

“I keep an eye on the love life of the Colorado beetle and work against it,” Samuel Beckett writes in this second volume of his collected letters. “… That is to say by throwing the parents into my neighbor’s garden and burning the eggs. If only someone had done that for me!”

Posted on Oct 28, 2011 READ MORE



Incarceration—It’s Catching

Is the massive surge of imprisonment a contagious disease? Does the answer lie in the structure of our democracy? Two new books suggest so.

Posted on Oct 21, 2011 READ MORE



The Internet and Human Sexuality

The Internet, for the authors of “A Billion Wicked Thoughts: What the World’s Largest Experiment Reveals About Human Desire,” is a boggling treasure trove of research on human sexual behavior.

Posted on Oct 14, 2011 READ MORE



What Does It Mean to Be Black?

Two new books take radically different approaches to questions of race introspection—one academic, the other anecdotal.

Posted on Oct 7, 2011 READ MORE



A Writer for All Time

Two new volumes—a biography and an anthology—shine light on G.K. Chesterton, an inhabitant of the twilight realm of the praised but unread.

Posted on Sep 30, 2011 READ MORE



Disasters Merging

Catastrophic convergence, the “collision of political, economic, and environmental disasters,” is the theme of Christian Parenti’s epic new book, “Tropic of Chaos.”

Posted on Sep 23, 2011 READ MORE



The Muslim World Brings Forth a Counter-Jihad

Robin Wright’s new book, “Rock the Casbah,” surveys the people of Islam a decade after 9/11 and finds they have turned not toward extremism but moderation.

Posted on Sep 16, 2011 READ MORE



A Dud From ‘Darth’

As I mentioned to friends when I started reading Dick Cheney’s memoir, I was doing it so others would not have to. And, as a precaution, I did it alone in case my head exploded. It did not. This book is a bomb, but not the exploding kind.

Posted on Sep 8, 2011 READ MORE


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