REVIEWED: Grant

Grant by Ron Chernow (Historical Biography, 2017). Chernow, an award-winning biographer, tackles another key figure in American history in this, his latest book. He produces a richly detailed and forthright account of the man known to us as US Grant. With obvious sympathy and appreciation of his subject’s often underrated abilities, Chernow nonetheless doesn’t shy away […]

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REVIEWED: Manderley Forever

Manderley Forever: A Biography of Daphne Du Maurier by Tatiana De Rosnay (Biography, 2017). The title here is, of course, a reference to the fictional mansion in Du Maurier’s best known novel, Rebecca. As the author makes clear, real life homes fascinated and repeatedly inspired Du Maurier. In particular, ones she lived in (as well as […]

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REVIEWED: Be Free Or Die

Be Free Or Die by Cate Lineberry (Nonfiction/Civil War History, 2017). About a year into America’s Civil War, a enslaved man named Robert Smalls made an epic break for freedom from that hotbed of succession, Charleston, South Carolina. A skilled boatman and born leader, he was by this time the de facto pilot of a steamer […]

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REVIEWED: Three Days in January

Three Days in January: Dwight Eisenhower’s Final Mission by Bret Baier, with Catherine Whitney. (Historical Biography, 2017). The title of this fascinating and generally insightful book refers to the last 3 days of Mr. Eisenhower’s Presidency and the dual-purposed personal mission he set for himself over that time. On the one hand, he was intent on […]

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REVIEWED: Chasing Space

Chasing Space by Leland Melvin. (Memoir, 2017). Leland Melvin has led an interesting and high-achieving life. How many people have played pro football (no matter how briefly), become a top-flight engineer, then joined NASA, eventually becoming an astronaut (with two space flights to his credit) and later moving on to a career as a tireless education […]

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REVIEWED: Over the Hills and Far Away: The Life of Beatrix Potter

Over the Hills and Far Away: The Life of Beatrix Potter by Matthew Dennison (Biography, 2017). In this book, Matthew Dennison, a prize-winning author (his Vita Sackville-West bio was named a “Book of the Year” by the London Times), has produced a winning and moving portrait of another revered literary figure. Assisted by telling photographs, quoting […]

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