Category Archives: book reviews

More reaction to A. N. Wilson’s new biography of Darwin

Yesterday A. N. Wilson‘s new debunking biography of Darwin, Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker, came out in the UK (it’ll be out the U.S. in December), but a while back it had already caused a fracas among reviewers. While a few reviewers liked it, most of them, including anyone who knew anything about evolution or Darwin, gave it very bad […]

New reviews of A. N. Wilson’s debunking biography of Darwin

The reviews are starting to come in for A. N. Wilson’s new Darwin-debunking book, Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker (out on September 7 in the UK, December in the U.S.),which I mentioned here. The book not only trashes Darwin as a white supremacist, careerist, and purloiner of other people’s ideas, but also goes after evolution itself, which Wilson […]

Wilson’s book on Darwin trashed again, this time in the Guardian and the Evening Standard

A. N. Wilson, prolific but seemingly sloppy biographer, at least of Darwin, has published two excerpts of his new book, Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker (out on September 7 in the UK, December in the U.S.). One was in the Evening Standard, and the other in the Times, but both were misguided and splenetic. (I haven’t yet read […]

A book on Darwin damned in New Scientist

A while back, several readers sent me an Evening Standard article by A. N. Wilson, “It’s time Charles Darwin was exposed for the fraud he was.” That turned out to be a precis of a new book by Wilson, Charles Darwin: Victorian Mythmaker (out on September 7 in the UK, December in the U.S.). Of course the […]

The New Yorker admits atheism

I’ve been critical before about the New Yorker‘s implicit dissing of science as well as its softness toward religion (see here, here and here, for instance).  After all, the clientele of the magazine is liberal, wealthy, and though they’re probably not religious, they like a gentlemanly, well-fed detente between science and religion. The magazine also has […]

What I’m reading (and you?)

I usually read only one book at a time, but for some reason I’m now engaged with four. That makes it hard, because I have to choose, of an evening, which one to continue; and unless I alternate them frequently, I forget what I’ve read a week ago. Here are the four, one of which […]

My WaPo review of a new book on gene editing

I’ve reviewed the new book by Jennifer Doudna and Samuel Sternberg, A Crack in Creation: Gene Editing and The Unthinkable Power to Control Evolution; my piece is online at today’s Washington Post and will be on the first page of the “Outlook” section in the Sunday paper. The review is free to access, and is called “New […]

Milo’s book a bestseller, Regressive Left largely responsible

Dangerous, Milo Yiannopoulos’s new book, doesn’t come out until March 14, but it’s already #34 on Amazon, and #1 in 3 categories. On Friday, based on preorders, it had risen briefly to #1.  Milo was paid $250,000 as an advance by Simon and Schuster, and stands to earn much more than that given the sales. What’s in […]

My WaPo review of a new book on evolution and society

Here’s a new book by Randall Fuller, a professor of English at the University of Tulsa who has written on American literature and on the Civil War. He’s combined those two topics in his newest book (it came out January 14), whose thesis is that Darwin’s ideas on common ancestry helped fuel the abolitionist movement in […]

John Gray reviews a book on cats

Unless there are two British writers named John Gray, the one to which I’m referring has been problematic: an atheist who loves to attack other atheists and osculate religion (see my posts here). However, you can’t fully dislike a man who likes cats, and Gray clearly does. Gray, the head book reviewer for the New […]