The Short and Powerful Biography of Robert Peace
A lot of books declare themselves to be “the [insert adjective] life of [insert name].” “The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks.” “The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao.” “The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry” (which I reviewed a few weeks ago). Now, there is one more: “The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace,” by Jeff Hobbs ’02.
Cask Republic: Great Food, No Joke
Most bars serve food, but it seems to me that some do it with noticeably less enthusiasm than others. (Toad’s, I’ve heard, serves soup.) Cask, though, in spite of its definite bar-ness, doles out food with surprising good cheer and efficiency. All in all, my three-course lunch was tasty, timely, and even a little trendy.
Presidents and Precedents
Check out Scott Stern’s cover on Salovey and the changing role of the Yale President: http://technology.yaledailynews.com/features/weekend/presidents/
A Short Story Writ Long
“The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry,” by Gabrielle Zevin is a hard book to describe. It is at once heartbreakingly sad and airily light. It is simultaneously weighty and ephemeral. It is undeniably sentimental, but it also kills off important characters with a sort of blasé shrug. It’s hardly even a novel; I would classify »
Comeback Kid: “The Silkworm”
Maybe some authors only have one blockbuster idea, but maybe not. Robert Galbraith, as many now know, is a pseudonym for J.K. Rowling. And “The Silkworm” is about as close to an autobiography as we will likely ever get from the tight-lipped Rowling.
Forcing the Revolution, Or Not
So Becker penned her book — not a thrilling tale of absolute victory, but still an interesting, well-documented story about one small part of the broader movement for equal rights. Except she went too far.
Summer Reading Roundup
So obviously I figured there was no better time to discuss this summer’s best reads than after the summer, just as a new, time-devouring semester is about to begin.
Top 10 Books of the Year
In the last year, I have written 15 book reviews for WEEKEND. These reviews have been, of course, a labor of love. Emphasis on the love. And the labor.
Plain, Revolutionary Jane: “Book of Ages” by Jill Lepore
In 1939, the city of Boston tore down a small house that was obstructing the view of a monument of Paul Revere. This action was an apt metaphor. The house had belonged to Jane Franklin Mecom, the youngest sister of Benjamin Franklin. And she lived in an era in which women were kept low to make way for enlightened men.
History, As Told by Bill Bryson
Perhaps “One Summer: America 1927,” by Bill Bryson, is “remedial pseudo-history” that “does a disservice to the very word ‘history.’” Or perhaps it is “a splendid book, written in the breezy and humorous style that has come to be Bryson’s trademark.” This depends on whom you believe — esteemed professor Douglas Brinkley or prolific journalist »
A Wild Injustice
To many modern readers, the death penalty may seem permanent—in more ways than one. Capital punishment is so ingrained in our national cowboy culture that it may be hard to imagine that just over four decades ago the Supreme Court announced that the death penalty, as practiced at the time, was unconstitutional.
Navigating the Bully Pulpit
Few authors are as iconic, as respected, and as universally lauded as Doris Kearns Goodwin. As a young White House intern in the Johnson administration, she nearly lost her job for publishing an article mapping out a strategy to impeach Johnson. Nonetheless, Goodwin eventually became close with Johnson, conducting dozens of conversations that laid the »