Tag Archives: Books

Preview: Times Literary Supplement – May 27, 2022

Times Literary Supplement, May 27, 2022 – @TheTLS, featuring @NshShulman on the Queen; @nclarke14 on Melvyn Bragg; @richardlea on nuclear power; Claire Lowdon on Elif Batuman; @RohanMaitzen on Rosalind Brackenbury; @rinireg on abortion – and more.

Reviews: Top New Science Books (Nature Magazine)

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Beyond the Hype

Fiona Fox Elliott & Thompson (2022)

It is 20 years since journalist Fiona Fox set up the influential Science Media Centre in London, to persuade more scientists to engage with the media. This absorbing, detailed book is her memoir of that period — not, as she makes clear, an “objective record”. Separate chapters deal with controversies such as “Climategate”, “Frankenfoods”, the politicization of science, sexism in research and how the current pandemic epitomizes an “age-old dichotomy” between the need for simple public messaging and the messy complexity of science.

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Bitch

Lucy Cooke Doubleday (2022)

“Try explaining the need to be passive” to a female spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta), writes zoologist and author Lucy Cooke, “and she’ll laugh in your face, after she’s bitten it off”. She is dominant in rough play, scent‑marking and territorial defence. By analysing numerous animals, this sparkling attack on scientific sexism draws on many scientists — of multiple genders — to correct stereotypes of the active male versus passive female. Many such concepts were initiated by Charles Darwin, who is nevertheless Cooke’s “scientific idol”.

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Beyond Coding

Marina Umaschi Bers MIT Press (2022)

Early-childhood technologist Marina Bers developed the KIBO robot, which young children can program with coloured, barcoded wooden blocks to learn computer coding. It is the chief character in her engaging book, which presents four key ways to consider coding for kids: as a “playground”; “another language”; a “palette of virtues”; and a “bridge”. The palette includes infusing ethics and moral education into programming. The bridge involves finding points of connection between diverse cultural, ethnic and religious groups.

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Nuclear Bodies

Robert A. Jacobs Yale Univ. Press (2022)

The Japanese word hibakusha originally described the victims of the atomic bombs dropped on Japan in 1945. Since the 2011 Fukushima nuclear power-plant disaster, the term has been widely extended to denote worldwide victims of radiation exposure. Yet it does not appear in the Oxford English Dictionary: evidence that “these ‘global hibakusha’ have been largely invisible to us”, because of their relative political insignificance, notes Hiroshima-based historian Robert Jacobs in this grimly important analysis of the cold war.

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Travels with Trilobites

Andy Secher Columbia Univ. Press (2022)

The fascinating marine invertebrate known as a trilobite belongs to the beginning of complex animal life. It appeared some 521 million years ago, and endured for more than 250 million years, evolving more than 25,000 recognized species. Palaeontologist Andy Secher coedits the trilobite website for the American Museum of Natural History in New York City. He owns more than 4,000 trilobite fossils, many of which are pictured in this paean to “the omnipresent monarchs of the world’s ancient se

Previews: London Review Of Books – May 26, 2022

London Review of Books, May 26, 2022 –

James MeekHow Civil Wars Start – And How to Stop Them by Barbara F. Walter

LettersHugh Pennington, Anna Swan, Thomas Ciantra, Nicholas Blanton, David Howell, Oren Margolis, Peter Thonemann, Michael Gray, Nick Rampley, Bernard Richards, Tom WellsClare JacksonElizabeth Stuart: Queen of Hearts by Nadine AkkermanJames ButlerShort Cuts: Limping to Success

Preview: Times Literary Supplement – May 20, 2022

Times Literary Supplement, May 20, 2022 – This week’s @TheTLS, featuring @wmarybeard on Roman souvenirs; @EdwardDocx on Boris Johnson and contempt; @pwilcken on Operation Car Wash; @AdamSJFoulds on music and conflict; @_Poots_ on Leslie Thomas QC – and more

Book Reviews: Booklist Magazine – May 15, 2022

Booklist Magazine, May 15, 2022 – From a barrier-leaping African American woman in the Gilded Age to a military coup in Guatemala and the woman bookseller who first published James Joyce’s Ulysses a century ago, the most radiant historical novels of the past 12 months illuminate many lives and times.

History Books: ‘The Castle’ By John Goodall (2022)

John Goodall’s The Castle: A history is the much slimmer companion to his magisterial The English Castle, (2011). Partly an attempt to bring the fruits of his research to a wider audience, Goodall’s new book uses extracts and quotations as the foundation of a historical account: each short chapter features an excerpt from a primary source that seeks to illustrate a particular moment. Rather than offering an architectural or conventional narrative history, Goodall explores the concept of the castle as it has been imagined, remade and contested over time. Important castles such as the Tower of London, Kenilworth and Windsor feature throughout.

Preview: Times Literary Supplement – May 13, 2022

Times Literary Supplement May 13, 2022 – Raphael: worn out by love, or work? | James Hall [reviews] Antonio Forcellino’s newly translated biography of the “most rounded, efficient and consistently accomplished of Renaissance artists”

New English Travel Books: ‘Deepest Somerset’ (2022)

Deepest Somerset off the presses

THE third book in our series, Deepest Somerset, is on its way to you.  It was printed at Blackmore in Shaftesbury on the last weekend in August, and is now at the bindery, where the cover, again featuring a wood engraving by Howard Phipps, will be joined to the pages.

Previews: The New York Review Of Books – May 26

Geoffrey O’Brien – Schemes Gone Awry

Richard Wilbur’s translations of Molière, now in the Library of America, have a fluency that goes beyond meter and rhyme to encompass textures of speech and movements of thought.

Molière: The Complete Richard Wilbur Translations


Fintan O’TooleOur Hypocrisy on War Crimes

The US’s history of moral evasiveness around wartime atrocities undermines the very institution that might eventually bring Putin and his subordinates to justice: the International Criminal Court.

Preview: Times Literary Supplement – May 6, 2022

Times Literary Supplement, May 6, 2022 – This week’s @TheTLS, featuring James Fenton on Volume IV of John Richardson’s Picasso biography; @joemoransblog on the “Premonitions Bureau”; @JuliusKrein on the American Right; @MElizabethLowry on William Kentridge; @AnaAliciaGarza on James Agee – and more