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Book Review

Over the last couple of weeks, I found myself drawn back to some books that I know fall right in the middle of my reading wheelhouse -- well-reported nonfiction on quirky subjects. In this case, both The Great Beanie Baby Bubble and The Monopolists use stories about the cutthroat business of toys to explore large questions [...]


In her twenties, Nina MacLaughlin spent most of her time sitting behind a desk at a newspaper in Boston. Tired of moderating comments and feeding the endless beast that is the Internet (sound familiar?), MacLaughlin responded to a Craiglist ad looking for a carpenter’s assistant – “women strongly encouraged to apply." Despite her lack of [...]


Review: ‘Being Mortal’ by Atul Gawande

Earlier this week, a friend and I went to see Still Alice, a movie about a 50 year old linguistic professor diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer's Disease. Alice, played by Julianne Moore, tries to manage her disease as long as she can, but eventually can't be left alone. In one of many heartbreaking scenes, her husband and [...]


One of the most dangerous things that can happen to a pretty good book is that it gets over-hyped. I love gushing about books as much as the next reader, but sometimes a book can get praised so highly that it's impossible for it not to be disappointing. The two books I'm writing about today both [...]


My reading binge of biographies about famous, awesome ladies is still going strong. Today, I want to write about a wonderful biography of Ethel Payne, a pioneering black journalist who is known by many today as the “First Lady of the Black Press,” Eye on the Struggle by James McGrath Morris. Payne got her start [...]


One of the secret benefits of being a contributor to a site like Book Riot is that I benefit from the vast reading lives of the other contributors. As a result of their enthusiasm, I've been much more open into exploring the world of comics over the last several months. I like to try out [...]


I knew that The Lonely War by journalist Nazila Fathi was going to be a great read as soon as I finished the preface. In just six pages, Fathi gave, perhaps, the most clear, succinct and balanced account of the Iranian Revolution – a 1979 uprising that replaced the Iranian shah with a radical Islamic [...]


“Now reading her letters, I knew more about the woman I thought I loved. Or maybe I knew less. Maybe what I knew was that there was more mystery and hurt than I could have imagined. Maybe the world has been bad to its great and unusual women. Maybe there wasn’t a worthy place for [...]


The six women featured in Judith Mackrell’s Flappers: Six Women of a Dangerous Generation  are not the most famous women of the Jazz Age. But the stories of Josephine Baker, Tallulah Bankhead, Diana Cooper, Nancy Cunard, Zelda Fitzgerald, and Tamara de Lempicka are wonderful illustrations of the challenge in forming identity and a life with [...]


In 1895, Tsar Nicholas Romanov II and his wife, Tsarita Alexandra, welcomed their first child into the world. Although the Tsar and Tsarita were thrilled with their daughter, Olga, much of the Russian populace was concerned because, of course, the dynasty needed a son. When the Tsarita gave birth to three more daughters -- Tatiana [...]