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As Nature Made Him: The Boy Who Was Raised as a Girl
This book will make you very angry; that a child could be so maltreated by an "expert," who clearly was in need of help himself, but who was so intent...more
not set
Nov 14, 2008
The Righteous Mind: Why Good People are Divided by Politics and Religion
"This book is about why it’s so hard for us to get along. We are indeed all stuck here for a while, so let’s at least do what we can to understand why...more
Sep 17, 2012
Sep 04, 2012
The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life
minor editing 3/10/10

One would hope that decisions are made based on solid evidence and a modicum of rational thought. Often that is not the case, how...more
not set
Dec 28, 2008
Bright-Sided: How the Relentless Promotion of Positive Thinking Has Undermined America
Read the reviews by Trevor ( and Lena ( They are better, but I could...more
May 04, 2011
Nov 15, 2009
Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most Powerful Mercenary Army

Addendum 8/6/09: Erik Prince accused of murder.

I had no idea the depth of antagonism toward the Clinton elect...more
May 18, 2009
Nov 13, 2008
Three Cups of Deceit: How Greg Mortenson, Humanitarian Hero, Lost His Way
Having enjoyed Krakauer’s work in the past, I picked up this Kindle single on spec. Turns out to be quite a read. Krakauer was an emotional and financ...more
Jun 02, 2012
Jun 02, 2012
The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals
Update 5/23/2010 Terrific piece by Michael Pollan in the NYRB June 10, 2010, "The Food Movement, Rising" in which he reviews five books: Everything I...more
Apr 2010
Feb 07, 2010
Hollowing Out the Middle: The Rural Brain Drain and What It Means for America
This is a prime example of why sociology is not science. No testable hypothesis, or repeatable data, just a mélange of anecdotes from which sweeping g...more
Jan 19, 2014
Jan 19, 2014
The Help
This book has a kazillion ratings and reviews so I doubt there is little I can add. I found the story and dialog to be quite believable. As someone wh...more
Sep 17, 2011
Sep 13, 2009
The Facts of Life: Science and the Abortion Controversy
Harold J. Morowitz, professor of biology, and James Trefil, who teaches physics, both at George Mason University, have produced what I consider to be...more
Jan 1999
Nov 28, 2008
Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do?
I love books like this: they challenge the mind and lead to great discussions.

Michael Sandel teaches a very popular course at Harvard entitled “Justic...more
Sep 19, 2012
Nov 28, 2009
The Zen of Fish: The Story of Sushi, from Samurai to Supermarket
Forgive me if this “review” seems an agglomeration of tidbits, but I really enjoy little facts and pieces of information, and this book was riddled wi...more
Sep 26, 2011
Jul 24, 2011
Ninety Percent of Everything: Inside Shipping, the Invisible Industry That Puts Clothes on Your Back, Gas in Your Car, and Food on Your Plate
I love ships. I remember looking at a silhouette picture of an old man in my ChildCraft set, his hand on the shoulders of a young boy, looking out ove...more
Apr 12, 2014
Mar 16, 2014
The Battle for the Books Inside Google's Gambit to Create the World's Biggest Library
Short but enlightening summary of the events and issues surrounding the infamous Google book digitization project.

First, let's get my biases out of th...more
Jan 2013
Jan 01, 2013
History Wars: The Enola Gay and Other Battles for the American Past
Two narratives merged in the abortive display proposed by the Smithsonian of the Enola Gay, the bomber that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima: the...more
Dec 06, 2009
Mar 27, 2009
A Predator Priest (Kindle Single)
This is a Kindle "Single." I guess it's a good idea. Reads like a nice, in-depth New Yorker article (a good thing.) (People unfamiliar with Bissonette...more
Jul 23, 2011
Jul 23, 2011
Deschooling Society
Ivan Illich is one of our more interesting social critics. Schooled as a priest he became anathema to both the left and the right of the Catholic Chur...more
not set
Nov 17, 2008
George Wallace: American Populist
George C. Wallace came up the hard way. He was desperately poor and 'scrambled for any job that literally might earn him a few pennies. At the same ti...more
Jun 2014
Jun 01, 2014
The Big Lie: Spying, Scandal, and Ethical Collapse at Hewlett-Packard
The recent gubernatorial election in California focused attention on two women who had been CEO’s of major corporations. I don’t know much about Meg W...more
Apr 06, 2011
Feb 08, 2011
The Deltoid Pumpkin Seed
I remember when, years ago, long before I retired, a guy came into the library and wanted some really obscure information on Ferris Wheels. I got to t...more
Jul 06, 2014
Jul 06, 2014
Anonymous Lawyer
Based on a real blog (still extant) by the no longer anonymous lawyer at a large firm, the novel is in the form of a series of emails and blog posting...more
Dec 31, 2009
Mar 18, 2009
The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference
I first read about this concept several years ago in a New Yorker article that discussed the theory of epidemics as it relates to crime, particularly...more
Jan 2003
Nov 15, 2008
The Battle of $9.99: How Apple, Amazon, and the Big Six Publishers Changed the E-Book Business Overnight
I suppose everyone who follows the book business now has made some kind of judgment about the tug-of-wat between Apple, Amazon, and the legacy publish...more
Apr 27, 2014
Apr 27, 2014
Anatomy of Injustice: A Murder Case Gone Wrong
I remember sitting in school in 7th grade, counting down the seconds to the execution of Caryl Chessman. I was not one of those who cheered when the c...more
Jul 12, 2014
Jul 12, 2014
Normal Accidents: Living with High-Risk Technologies
8/14/2011 I keep recommending this book and with the BP disaster, it continues to be very, very timely. One of the points made by Perrow is that when...more
Jan 1999
Nov 14, 2008
Thank God for the Atom Bomb & Other Essays
A very good friend of mine, a history teacher, amd I used to have a running battle over Truman's use of the atomic bomb. I argued that given the time...more
not set
Nov 21, 2008
Anatomy of Greed: The Unshredded Truth from an Enron Insider
Cruver was an inside witness to the greatest act of economic terrorism ever. Enron had hired nothing but the best and the brightest. They bragged abou...more
not set
Nov 14, 2008
The Dream Machine: The Untold History of the Notorious V-22 Osprey
Edit 12/17/13: This article by Whittle is worth reading regarding the safety of the machine compared to standard helicopters. One statistic he did not...more
Dec 11, 2013
May 13, 2010
Lies & the Lying Liars Who Tell Them: A Fair & Balanced Look at the Right
This very funny but extremely serious book goes after the deliberate falsehoods perpetrated by the right-wing on "liberals."
As you may know, the Fox N...more
not set
Nov 13, 2008
The Other Hollywood: The Uncensored Oral History of the Porn Film Industry
The best thing about this book is the cover. The book consists of titillating but not terribly illuminating snippets of interviews that reveal little...more
May 30, 2011
Feb 13, 2009
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