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Amusing Ourselves to Death: Public Discourse in the Age of Show Business
4.10
If someone held a gun to my head and asked for a precise and concise definition of irony (it could happen!), I would say only this: Neil Postman died ...more
not set
Sep 06, 2007
 
I Drink for a Reason
3.31
I Drink for a Reason is a poorly edited collection of unfocused ramblings and unfunny rants that serves mainly to highlight just how far the once bril ...more
not set
Jan 08, 2010
 
Why We Hate Us: American Discontent in the New Millennium
3.27
What would happen if you let Andy Rooney off his meds?

Grumble grumble....kids today and their blogging and the road rage and the short attention span
...more
Sep 07, 2008
Sep 04, 2008
 
Savage Inequalities: Children in America's Schools
4.23
A heart-wrenching jeremiad about the sorry state of minority schools in this country. Kozol has stated in interviews that we are worse off (both in co ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Chuck Klosterman IV: A Decade of Curious People and Dangerous Ideas
3.83
Ok, after reading two of his essay books, I think I've finally figured this Klosterman guy out and why he is equal parts interesting/infuriating. I th ...more
not set
Jul 02, 2007
 
Understanding Comics: The Invisible Art
4.02
Perhaps the best explanation of how a particular artistic medium works that I've ever seen. McCloud wrote this at a time when the artistic merit of co ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Caro's Book of Poker Tells
3.50
You'll be fine with this book if you read it for entertainment purposes only. Most players above an amateur level these days are aware of keeping thei ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Inconspicuous Consumption:  An Obsessive Look at the Stuff We Take for Granted, from the Everyday to the Obscure
4.17
Lukas brings more deliberation and insight to his essays about Pringles and tampon packaging than most critics do when they're talking about high art. ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking
3.82
Rule Two from the book:

"The best antidote I know for this tendency to caricature one's opponent is a list of rules promulgated many years ago by soci
...more
Jul 28, 2013
Jul 23, 2013
 
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
3.89
Amazon has so far avoided the moral stench that surrounds Wal-Mart, its brick and mortar counterpart, despite sharing its monopolistic discounter ambi ...more
Nov 30, 2013
Nov 17, 2013
 
The Persistence of Poverty: Why the Economics of the Well-Off Can't Help the Poor
3.49
A revolutionary premise tediously presented, The Persistence of Poverty felt like a slog and a half even at a slim 163 pages of text. I guess the endl ...more
not set
Oct 13, 2009
 
From Beirut to Jerusalem
4.08
These days, Friedman is possibly the single worst prose stylist with column space in a major newspaper. But before self-aggrandizing anecdotes, painfu ...more
Mar 28, 2009
Mar 18, 2009
 
The Puppet and the Dwarf: The Perverse Core of Christianity
3.88
Zizek is nothing if not a man of paradoxes. How else to explain this Marxist materialist atheist using little understood elements of Lacanian psychoan ...more
not set
Sep 03, 2007
 
Reading Like a Writer: A Guide for People Who Love Books and for Those Who Want to Write Them
3.76
Without question, my favorite thing to do while Not Writing is reading books about how to write. Reading scores of dry, unhelpful how-to's really help ...more
not set
Jul 03, 2007
 
The Year of Magical Thinking
3.82
I went in with very high hopes for this book, with stellar recommendations from critics and friends buoying my expectations. But Didion's oddly detach ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
The Evasion-English Dictionary
4.19
You would expect this to be a cutesy gimmick book - but you'd be wrong. It's actually a fairly astute piece of pop-psychology and linguistic observati ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Politics: Observations and Arguments, 1966-2004
4.14
As the New Yorker's political essayist (the column "Comment"), Hertzberg is known to many as the most stylish liberal writer in America and far be it ...more
not set
Jul 01, 2007
 
Legacy of Ashes: The History of the CIA
3.86
How an organization as inept, amoral, and bereft of tangible accomplishment as the CIA isn't a laughingstock is beyond me. More Mr. Bean than Jason Bo ...more
Jul 10, 2012
Jun 18, 2012
 
Harrington on Hold 'em: Expert Strategy for No-Limit Tournaments. Volume II: The Endgame
4.28
As the glowing reviews here suggest, this series is a standout among the glut of indistinguishable poker guides. Much better than Helmuth's book and m ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Consider the Lobster: And Other Essays
4.23
Consider me a convert. For whatever reason, I had completely written off David Foster Wallace based on very little actual experience with him (maybe i ...more
not set
Jul 02, 2007
 
One Click: Jeff Bezos and the Rise of Amazon.com
3.47
Less content than a New Yorker article on the same subject would have been.
not set
May 10, 2012
 
The Wes Anderson Collection
4.44
Still all right, despite Seitz.
Mar 27, 2014
Mar 26, 2014
 
Hip: The History
3.67
A lively prose style and an interesting thesis can’t hide the fact that John Leland uses 400+ pages to tell 200 pages worth of material.
Apr 12, 2010
Mar 25, 2010
 
The Man Who Mistook His Wife for a Hat and Other Clinical Tales
4.02
A classic from the man who somehow turned medical case histories into a literary genre - the sui generis Oliver Sacks never fails to entertain. Speaki ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
The Conquest of Cool: Business Culture, Counterculture, and the Rise of Hip Consumerism
3.85
One can get a much better distillation of the book's thesis in the newer "Nation of Rebels" by Joseph Heath and Andrew Potter or from "Commodify Your ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Can't Stop Won't Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation
4.13
Deftly straddles the line between sober academic and fanboy. Probably the seminal book on rap history, but still has some glaring omissions, i.e. the ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
Necessary Illusions: Thought Control in Democratic Societies
4.17
Chomsky interview books? Smart. Illuminating. Thought provoking even. Books written by Chomsky himself? Well, just don't operate heavy machinery after ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
The Braindead Megaphone
3.92
This would have gotten five stars if not for a few ill-advised humor pieces. It's odd how utterly unfunny those bits are since his fiction is often hi ...more
not set
Sep 01, 2007
 
How to Be Alone
3.61
Kind of startling how such a uniquely talented novelist can be so blah an essayist. The only real standout is the one where he describes his experienc ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
 
The Art of the Interview: Lessons from a Master of the Craft
3.46
If you can sift through the incessant name dropping and dirt dishing, maybe you can find some pointers on how to conduct a good interview. I personall ...more
not set
Jun 30, 2007
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