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Nah, We Straight

Baratunde Thurston’s “How To Be Black,” part memoir, part investigative journalism and part cheeky instruction manual, explores such topics as “How to Be the Angry Negro” and “How to Be the (Next) Black President.”

Posted on Sep 11, 2012 READ MORE


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The Wounds and the Gifts Are Inseparable

Instead of raging about the Canadian internment of 21,000 citizens of Japanese ancestry during WW II, the novel “Requiem” delicately probes the complex adjustments we make to live with our sorrows.

Posted on Sep 5, 2012 READ MORE



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The Mirage of Our Lives

In Dave Eggers’ “A Hologram for the King,” an ordinary man comes to realize that managers like him who made outsourcing possible will be discarded as human refuse now that the globalization process is complete, left to wander like ghosts among the ruins.

Posted on Aug 27, 2012 READ MORE



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Life-Defining Poetry

Maureen N. McLane’s deeply personal and eccentric “My Poets” is a meditation on the works that have “most marked” her by Chaucer, Gertrude Stein, William Carlos Williams, Marianne Moore, Emily Dickinson, Shelley and Louise Gluck.

Posted on Aug 21, 2012 READ MORE



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Reagan and Hoover, Sittin’ in a Tree

“Subversives” shows how the two men and their allies sabotaged the careers of law-abiding citizens, defended reckless police violence and exploited an appalling double standard in the political use of FBI intelligence.

Posted on Aug 14, 2012 READ MORE



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From a Refugee Camp to the Olympics

Lopez Lomong had never heard of the games when he tagged along with friends in Kenya to watch the 2000 Sydney races on a grainy, black-and-white TV powered by a car battery. Now, he’ll run the 5,000-meter for the U.S. in London.

Posted on Aug 7, 2012 READ MORE



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The Courage of Conscience

“Beautiful Souls: Saying No, Breaking Ranks, and Heeding the Voice of Conscience in Dark Times” tells the stories of unlikely dissenters who were not radicals, but rather ordinary people compelled to act when the system they believed in went terribly wrong.

Posted on Jul 31, 2012 READ MORE



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A Democracy Ahead of Its Time

A new biography, “Patriot of Persia,” sympathizes with Muhammad Mossadegh (1882-1967) in his attempt to reform Iran but does not let him off the hook for its failure.

Posted on Jul 24, 2012 READ MORE



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Life’s Creative Recipe

Developmental biologist Enrico Coen argues in “Cells to Civilizations” that just seven principles underlie the process by which the embryo is formed, as well as evolution, cognition and human culture.

Posted on Jul 17, 2012 READ MORE



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Tricks of the Trade

“Dial M for Murdoch: News Corporation and the Corruption of Britain” offers a clear picture of the sordid relationship that existed between the Murdoch press, the police and senior politicians.

Posted on Jul 11, 2012 READ MORE


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