In the News, March 2014
Posted 03.05.14: We mourn the death of Sherwin B. Nuland, a great man and magnificent writer. His wonderful books include How We Die: Reflections on Life's Final Chapter; The Wisdom of the Body / How We Live; The Mysteries Within: A Surgeon Reflects on Medical Myths; Lost in America: A Journey with My Father; The Uncertain Art: Thoughts on a Life in Medicine; The Soul of Medicine: Tales from the Bedside; The Doctor's Plague: Germs, Childbed Fever, and the Strange Story of Ignac Semmelweis; as well as brief studies of Leonardo da Vinci and Maimonides.
Posted 02.28.14: "Though we think of the detective story as a modern-day invention, UCLA professor Eric Jager proves a good whodunit can be set in the muck and the mire of more barbaric times, away from the shining lights of a lab. In his new book, Blood Royal: A True Tale of Crime and Detection in Medieval Paris, the academic chronicles the true story of a grisly Medieval murder, and the brilliant, tenacious police chief solved it without help from fancy forensic tools…. This whodunit is a gruesome tour de force, rich with scenes from the royal court, public gibbets, and monasteries where things aren't as pious as they seem…. Thoroughly researched and lyrically written, this sinister-but-informative period piece certainly beats watching reruns of CSI."—Jessica Leigh Hester, New York Daily News
Posted 02.12.14: A starred review from Booklist for On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History by Nicholas A. Basbanes: "Basbanes' renowned books about books, from A Gentle Madness (1999) to Every Book Its Reader (2005), are shaped by his investigative journalist's curiosity and skill as well as a penchant for the underappreciated. In his latest lassoing inquiry, he unfolds the two-thousand-year story of paper…. Combining crisp technical explanations with vivid historical and contemporary profiles... Every facet of this celebration of paper is engrossing and thought-provoking, leading up to the dramatic conclusion."
Posted 01.29.14: The American Library Association has selected On Paper: The Everything of Its Two-Thousand-Year History by Nicholas A. Basbanes as one of the winning titles for its 2014 Notable Books List—an annual literary award that identifies outstanding and noteworthy fiction, nonfiction and poetry for adult readers.
Posted 01.28.14: "The Cave and the Light: Plato versus Aristotle, and the Struggle for the Soul of Western Civilization by Arthur Herman, should be standard reading in every Philosophy 101 course, and on the short list of 'must read' books for any educated adult."—Bill Frezza, Forbes
Posted 01.23.14: Two more excellent advance reviews of Eric Jager's Blood Royal: A True Tale of Crime and Detection in Medieval Paris: "A tense and exciting true-life detective story. De Tigonville is the ideal detective, combining street smarts, a relentless drive, and a willingness to follow where the facts lead regardless of whose toes he steps on. An outstanding crime tale that also provides a good survey of both the glittering façade and the seamier aspects of medieval Paris."—Booklist "Jager's attention to atmosphere and detail allows the setting to come to life in all its gruesome detail, especially as he explores the nature of crime and punishment and the many grisly repercussions for the those held responsible.... This is a fascinating and complex look at the tumultuous events of early 15th century France."—Publishers Weekly
Posted 01.19.14: The Sunday New York Times Book Review asks E. L. Doctorow, “What's the best book you've read recently?”, and he replies: “Well, it could be Herodotus' “The Histories” in the Landmark edition published by Pantheon (The Landmark Herodotus: The Histories). Herodotus is spectacular—part historian, part investigative reporter and inveterate storyteller…. And then Harold Bloom's The American Religion, which argues that our domestic Christian religions are more Gnosticism than Christian.”
Posted 01.15.14: From yesterday's New York Times “ArtsBeat” column: “Satchmo at the Waldorf, Terry Teachout's one-man play about Louis Armstrong, will have its Off Broadway premiere at the Westside Theater. It begins previews Feb. 15, and opens on March 4. The show captures Armstrong reminiscing backstage after one of his last concerts. It will star John Douglas Thompson, the Obie-winning actor…. Gordon Edelstein will direct. Mr. Teachout, a theater critic for The Wall Street Journal, based his play on the research for his highly regarded 2009 biography, Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong, for which he had access to a series of Armstrong's diary tapes, which create a deeper more nuanced portrait of the great trumpeter.”
Posted 01.14.14: Eric Jager's Blood Royal: A True Tale of Crime and Detection in Medieval Paris has been chosen as a selection of the History Book Club, Military Book Club, Scientific American Book Club, and Book-of-the-Month Club.