...for every duff or unhinged sentence there is a moment or passage of human metaphysics beautifully distilled...
Sides' book is a masterful work of history and storytelling, and it rewards patient readers with scenes of human strength and frailty they will long remember.
...there is courage and insight in Perlstein’s analysis of how the Nixon administration built up the “POW/MIA” issue – the idea that some of those American soldiers reported missing in action in southeast Asia languished in communist dungeons.
Macintyre writes with the diligence and insight of a journalist, and the panache of a born storyteller, concentrating on Philby's friendship with and betrayal of Elliott and of Angleton, his pathetically dedicated admirer at the top of the CIA.
...a “Black Fleet” has fetched up offshore, holding shady businesses, deniable torture centres and drug factories. Lester and the boy team up to battle the island’s dark forces. Tigerman is equal parts eco-fable, comic-book caper, thriller and buddy novel. Gripping stuff.
What the book lacks is objectivity. Not only does the author note that she never asked questions she felt would be unwelcome, she is awestruck to the point of obsequiousness. It is to the book’s and the readers’ detriment that her hero worship of her often grumpy subject is so glaring.
John D. Bassett III's determination to maintain U.S. manufacturing, to keep his factories open and his workers employed, makes him a hero to Ms. Macy, and her prodigious research and colorful writing make this book worthwhile for anyone interested in reviving American industry.
A creative who's also worked on the other side of the business as a label owner, Stanley digs too into the rise of music's ancillary industries, such as the pop press ("consumers wanted … to feel closer to their idols," he writes) and music-based television programming...
As restless, and as sly, as the mythical Proteus, she nimbly remakes her novel at every turn — but she does so with another goal in mind. Sometimes, she seems to say, the only way to get your mind around the past is just to step ahead to a new beginning.
Through the images, three strands of story emerge: that of Graham and his family; that of Eric, his art and his tragic marriage to a Catholic; and the anxieties of Jozef...the connections between the strands are so glancing that the tales seem to interrupt rather than supplement each other...
My trouble with this book was not its failure to live up to genre conventions — any good story can get away with breaking the rules. But I was disappointed that the characters remained thin, even through plot twists and revelations that should have granted them life beyond the page.
Rowell’s touching romance has a supernatural twist, a telephonic portal that allows TV comedy writer Georgie to time travel back and forth from the present day to the period before she was married using a vintage rotary-dial telephone.
As broad as its themes are—touching on political, philosophical and historical divisions—Weil’s first novel is rooted in family and fine storytelling; it's an engaging, highly satisfying tale blessed by sensitivity and a gifted imagination.
There’s never anything predictable about stubbornly optimistic and protective Jess and her oddball kids, or the distracted Ed and his disjointed work-family relationships. It’s exactly that quality that makes this offbeat journey so satisfying, and Moyes’s irrepressible flaws-and-all characters so memorable.
Gould nails the complex blend of love, loyalty, and resentment that binds female friends. It is worth reading for the richness of its details...and it offers new insight into the experience of young women.
Over the course of "Deep," Mr. Nestor comes to see competitive freediving as "egocentric...he leaves the reader with the idea of freediving as a tool to better understand the life of the sea..."Deep" is a fascinating, informative, exhilarating book...
...swift and satisfying, especially when read through the lens of secrets and fame and the famous writer behind it all.
There are moments of dark musicality, and Eggers’s concern with the abuse of power is resonant. But the novel is hollowed out by its main character’s mixture of apocalyptic gloom and repetitive pedantry.
A book that seems to begin as a children’s story ends in blood-soaked mayhem; the journey from one genre to another is satisfying and surprisingly fresh considering that it's set in a familiar version of gothic London among equally familiar monsters.
Plowing her way through 460,000 items of Clare’s restricted papers at the Library of Congress, a collection bigger than that of most presidents, Ms. Morris was the only author given complete access. She has also uncovered rich sources elsewhere...