Category Archives: book reviews

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 […]

Forbes’s choice of best popular biology books of 2016

As I’m out at a meeting in Los Angeles (with a hotel room having a lovely view of the LAX runways–seriously, it’s cool: photo at bottom), I can’t really post much on science, which requires reading a paper several times and then having a lot of time to write about it. So for today’s biology fix, let me just […]

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar reviews Ali Rizvi’s “The Atheist Muslim” in the NYT (and a new book by Omar Saif Ghobash)

Last November I wrote about Ali Rizvi‘s new book, The Atheist Muslim: A Journey from Religion to Reason, and recommended it. I had read it in galleys and provided a cover blurb, which is below: “In this timely and important book, Ali Rizvi deftly weaves together two narratives: the abandonment of his Muslim faith, and a […]

New York Times’s “Ten best books of 2016”. . . and what do you recommend?

Below is the list of the best books of this year selected by the New York Times; one of them was recommended by Nigel Warburton in his Five Books post about the best popular philosophy books.) If you’ve read any of these, weigh in below. I provide the Times‘s brief synopsis and a link to their reviews. […]

Nigel Warburton: Best philosophy books of 2016

Sophie Roell of Five Books interviewed freelance philosopher Nigel Warburton  (bio here) on his choices for the best popular philosophy books of 2016. The choices are interesting, and I’ll read at least two of them—probably the first two. I’ll show the books and then summarize a few of Warburton’s comments (indented) An intro: Over the […]

The best review yet of Tom Wolfe’s book on language

I don’t think my WaPo review of Tom Wolfe’s new book The Kingdom of Speech was half bad, but there’s a better one out, which is very long and ergo can cover a lot more ground. It’s at 3:AM Magazine, is by “E. J. Spode” (probably a pseudonym), and, when printed out, is 19 pages long. But […]

More Egnorance about Darwin and language in the Washington Post

Well, given the number of comments on my review in the Washington Post of Tom Wolfe’s abysmal new book on Darwin, Chomsky, and the evolutionary basis of language (Wolfe says there is no such basis), I shouldn’t have been surprised that there would be pushback from readers. But what I didn’t expect was that one of the […]