Sunday, April 29. 2007
Continue reading "Books"
Sometime back in September or October of 2006 I came home from a
browse at the bookstore and started to put together a list of the
more/less promising, interesting, and/or appalling books I noticed
crowding the politics, current affairs, and history shelves. I
spent several weeks coming up with most of what follows, before
it got out of hand and I lost track. I've finally decided I might
as well post this on the blog before it becomes a mere history
snapshot. I've made a couple of quick passes to clean it up and
add a few new items, but it's nowhere near up to date. Since then,
I've made substantial changes to my
books section, and will keep working
on this in that area. The old section was sketched out but never
populated. Since then I've made quite a few comments in the blog
on various books. I've now gone back through the blog and a few
other sources and copied that information to the books section.
The main organizing model here is the shopping list: things
that look to be really worthwhile reading, things that look good
but may not be necessary, things that are probably good but not
in my interest area at the moment, things that look like stuff
I already know, things that I know better than, things that don't
look like much of anything, etc. During the course of this I read
some of the things near the top, and I kept running things I had
already read, so those are in a list at the bottom.
Almost all of these books were released since June 2006,
including paperback reissues of earlier books. The lists are far
from comprehensive, but give a rough idea of how much good, bad,
and ugly reading has appeared recently. This strikes me as a
tremendous increase over the last five years. That in itself is
a measure of growing problems. Whether one should be optimistic
about their recognition remains to be seen.
As I rebuild the books section, I'll try
reorganizing these lists more topically, although I'll probably
keep the shopping list breakdown within categories.
These are recent books of prime interest. I'd say that the chances
I'll eventually read any book on this list is greater than 50%. Some
I've already bought.
- Taner Akcam, A Shameful Act: The Armenian Genocide and the
Question of Turkish Responsibility (Henry Holt).
- Rajiv Chandrasekaran, Imperial Life in the Emerald City: Inside
Iraq's Green Zone (Knopf).
- Andrew Cockburn, Rumsfeld: His Rise, Fall, and Catastrophic
- Barbara Ehrenreich, Dancing in the Streets: A History of
Collective Joy (2007-01, Henry Holt).
- Robert Fisk, The Great War for Civilization: The Conquest of
the Middle East (2007-02, Knopf, paperback). Have had this
since the hardcover came out. Big book.
- Atul Gawande, Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance
(2007-04, Henry Holt).
- Greg Grandin, Empire's Workshop: Latin America, the United
States, and the Rise of the New Imperialism (2006-05, Henry
- Jacob S. Hacker and Paul Pierson, Off Center: The Republican
Revolution and the Erosion of American Democracy (Yale University
Press, paperback). I have this, but haven't gotten around to it. Thought
it looked like the best book on how the right-wing machine works.
- Chris Hedges, American Fascists: The Christian Right and the
War on America (Simon & Schuster).
- Stephen Kinzer, Overthrow: America's Century of Regime Change
From Hawaii to Iraq (Times Books). I've read Kinzer's All
the Shah's Men: An American Coup and the Roots of Middle East Terror,
a good history of Iran focusing on the anti-Mossadegh coup.
- Anatol Lieven and John Hulsman, Ethical Realism: A Vision for
America's Role in the World (Knopf).
- David Lindorff and Barbara Olshansky, The Case for Impeachment:
The Legal Argument for Removing President George W. Bush From Office
- Michael Pollan, The Omnivore's Dilemma: A Natural History of
Four Meals (Penguin).
These are books that I wish I had time to read, but I probably
won't get around to. Some could move up, especially if my interest
shifts in their direction.
- Ali Abunimah, One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the
Israeli-Palestinian Impasse (2006-10, Henry Holt).
- Tariq Ali, Pirates of the Caribbean: Axis of Hope
(2006-12, Verso). Actually, I don't have much interest in Castro or
Chavez, but I've read three straight books by Ali.
- Karen Armstrong, The Great Transformation: The Beginning
of Our Religious Traditions (2007-04, Knopf, paperback).
- Jack Beatty, Age of Betrayal: The Triumph of Money in
America, 1865-1900 (2007-04, Knopf).
- Morris Berman, Dark Ages America: The Final Phase of
Empire (WW Norton).
- Sarah Chayes, The Punishment of Virtue: Inside Afghanistan
After the Taliban (Penguin).
- Joseph Cirincione, Bomb Scare: The History and Future of
Nuclear Weapons (2007-01, Columbia University Press).
- William Easterly, The White Man's Burden: Why the West's
Efforts to Aid the Rest Have Done So Much Ill and So Little Good
(Penguin; paperback scheduled Feb. 27, 2007). I have, but haven't read,
Easterly's well-regarded The Elusive Quest for Growth: Economists'
Adventures and Misadventures in the Tropics (MIT, paperback).
- James K Galbraith, Unbearable Cost: Bush, Greenspan and the
Economics of Empire (2006-11, Palgrave Macmillan, paperback).
- Jeff Goodell, Big Coal: The Dirty Secret Behind America's
Energy Future (2007-04, Houghton Mifflin, paperback).
- Michael Grunwald, The Everglades, Florida, and the Politics
of Paradise (2007-03, Simon & Schuster, paperback).
- Jacob S. Hacker, The Great Risk Shift: The Assault on
American Jobs, Families, Health Care, and Retirement and How You
Can Fight Back (Oxford University Press).
- David Harvey, Limits to Capital (2007-01, Verso,
- Steven Hiatt, A Game As Old As Empire: The Secret World of
Economic Hit Men and the Web of Global Corruption (2007-02,
- Zachary Karabell, Peace Be Upon You: The Story of Muslim,
Christian, and Jewish Coexistence (2007-02, Knopf).
- Rashid Khalidi, The Iron Cage: The Story of the Palestinian
Struggle for Statehood (Beacon Press).
- Elizabeth Kolbert, Field Notes From a Catastophe
(2006-12, Bloomsbury, paperback). Read most/all of this in New Yorker.
- Bill McKibben, Deep Economy: The Wealth of Communities and
the Durable Future (Henry Holt).
- Chris Mooney, The Republican War on Science (Basic
- John E. Mueller, Overblown: How Politicians and the Terrorism
Industry Inflate National Security Threats, and Why We Believe Them
(Simon & Schuster).
- Sari Nusseibeh, Once Upon a Country: A Palestinian Life
(Farrar Straus and Giroux).
- Roland Paris, At War's End: Building Peace After Civil
Conflict (Cambridge University Press, paperback).
- Steven Poole, Unspeak: How Words Become Weapons, How Weapons
Become a Message, and How That Message Becomes Reality
- Vijay Prashad, The Darker Nations: A People's History of
the Third World (2007-01, New Press).
- Gérard Prunier, Darfur: The Ambiguous Genocide
(Cornell University Press). Author has a previous book, The
Rwanda Crisis: History of a Genocide.
- Jill Quadagno, One Nation, Uninsured: Why the US Has No
National Health Insurance (2006-10, Oxford University Press,
- David J. Rothman and Sheila M. Rothman, Trust Is Not Enough:
Bringing Human Rights to Medicine (New York Review of Books).
- Susan Sered/Rushika Fernandopulle, Uninsured in America:
Life and Death in the Land of Opportunity (2006-10, University
of California Press, paperback).
- Seth Shulman, Undermining Science: Suppression and Distortion
in the Bush Administration (2007-01, University of California
- David Sirota, Hostile Takeover: How Big Business Bought Our
Government and How We Can Take It Back (Crown).
- Paul Starr, Freedom's Power: The True Force of Liberalism
- Alex Steffen, ed., Worldchanging: A User's Guide for the
21st Century (Abrams).
- Alexander Stille, The Sack of Rome: How a Beautiful European
Country With a Fabled History and a Storied Culture Was Taken Over by
a Man Named Silvio Berlusconi (Penguin).
- Dan Tapscott, Wikinomics: How Mass Collaboration Changes
Everything (2006-12, Penguin).
- Thant Myint-U, The River of Lost Footsteps: Histories of
Burma (2006-12, Farrar Straus and Giroux).
- Lawrence Wright, The Looming Tower: Al-Qaeda and the Road to
9/11 (Knopf). I've generally avoided books that tightly focus
on Bin Laden and Zawahiri -- what interests me more is the context.
This looks like it might be the exception.
- Muhammad Yunus, Banker to the Poor: Micro-Lending and the
Battle Against World Poverty (paperback).
These are books that pique my interest, but are in an area where
there is no practical chance I can get to them given everything else
I need to read. In other words, these are books that look like they
should be on one of the above lists, but got arbitrarily moved out.
- Iain Anderson, This Is Our Music: Free Jazz, the Sixties,
and American Culture (2006-11, University of Pennsylvania
- David A Bell, The First Total War: Napoleon's Europe and
the Birth of Warfare as We Know It (2007-01, Houghton Mifflin).
- Tom Bissell, The Father of All Things: A Marine, His Son,
and the Legacy of Vietnam (2007-03, Knopf).
- Ned Blackhawk, Violence Over the Land: Indians and Empires
in the Early American West (2006-11, Harvard University Press).
- Taylor Branch, At Canaan's Edge: America in the King Years,
1965-68 (Simon & Schuster, paperback). I have, but have
not read, the two previous volumes, a luxury I hope to get to sooner
- Joan Didion, The Year of Magical Thinking (2007-02,
- Eric Foner, Forever Free: The Story of Emancipation and
Reconstruction (2006-11, Knopf, paperback).
- John Gimlette, Theatre of Fish: Travels Through Newfoundland
and Labrador (2006-11, Knopf, paperback).
- Jerome Groopman, How Doctors Think (2007-03,
- Paul Kriwaczek, Yiddish Civilization: The Rise and Fall of
a Forgotten Nation (2006-10, Knopf, paperback).
- Mark Kurlansky, The Big Oyster: History on the Half Shell
(2007-01, Random House, paperback).
- Lawrence Lessig, Code: Version 2.0 (2006-12, Basic
- John Newhouse, Boeing Versus Airbus: The Inside Story of the
Greatest International Competition in Business (2007-01, Knopf).
- Narendra Sarila, The Shadow of the Great Game: The Untold Story
of India's Partition (2006-12, Avalon).
- Amartya Sen, Identity and Violence: The Illusion of Destiny
(2007-02, WW Norton, paperback).
- David Silbey, War of Frontier and Empire: The Phillipine-American
War, 1898-1902 (2007-02, Hill and Wang).
- Rory Stewart, The Prince of the Marshes: And Other Occupational
Hazards of a Year in Iraq (Harcourt). Stewart also wrote a travel
book on Afghanistan in 2002, The Places in Between (Harcourt,
paperback), evidently well-regarded. In Iraq he worked for CPA.
- John Szwed, Crossovers: Essays on Race, Music, and American
Culture (2007-01, University of Pennsylvania Press, paperback).
- Jen Trynin, Everything I'm Cracked Up to Be: A Rock &
Roll Fairy Tale (2007-02, Harcourt, paperback).
- Nicholas Wade, Before the Dawn: Recovering the Lost History
of Our Ancestors (2007-03, Penguin, paperback).
- Scott Weidensaul, Return to Wild America: A Yearlong Search
for the Continent's Natural Soul (2006-10, Farrar Straus and
- George Weller, First Into Nagasaki: The Censored Eyewitness
Dispatches on Postatomic Japan and Its Prisoners of War (2006-12,
These books look to be worthwhile for one reason or another, but
unless I develop a narrow research interest I doubt that I'll ever
get to them.
- Christian Alfonsi, Circle in the Sand: Why We Went Back to
Iraq (2006-10, Doubleday).
- David L. Altheide, Terorism and the Politics of Fear
(AltaMira Press, paperback).
- Benedict Anderson, Imagined Communities: Reflections on the
Origin and Spread of Nationalism (Verso, paperback).
- Anthony Arnove, Iraq: The Logic of Withdrawal (2007-01,
Henry Holt, paperback).
- Benjamin R Barber, Consumed: How Markets Corrupt Children,
Infantilize Adults, and Swallow Citizens Whole (WW Norton).
- Howard Brick, Transcending Capitalism: Visions of a New Society
in Modern American Thought (2006-12, Cornell University Press).
- Howard Brody, Hooked: How Medicine's Dependence on the
Pharmaceutical Industry Undermines Professional Ethics (Rowman
- Noam Chomsky, Failed States: The Abuse of Power and the Assault
on Democracy (Henry Holt).
- Charles Clover, The End of the Line: How Overfishing Is
Changing the World and What We Eat (2006-11, New Press).
- Jonathan Cohn, Sick: The Untold Story of America's Health
Care Crisis -- and the People Who Pay the Price (Harper Collins).
- Mark Danner, Torture and Truth: America, Abu Ghraib, and the
War on Terror (paperback).
- Michael Eric Dyson, Debating Race (2007-02, Perseus).
- Fawaz A Gerges, Journey of the Jihadist: Inside Muslim
- Manuel G. Gonzalez, The Politics of Fear: How Republicans Use
Money, Race and the Media to Win (Paradigm, paperback).
- Jan Crawford Greenburg, Supreme Conflict: The Inside Story
of the Struggle for Control of the United States Supreme Court
- Dilip Hiro, Blood of the Earth: The Battle for the World's
Vanishing Oil Resources (2006, Nation Books, paperback).
- Leslie Holmes, Rotten States? Corruption, Post-Communism,
and Neoliberalism (Duke University Press, paperback).
- Georgina Howell, Gertrude Bell: Queen of the Desert, Shaper
of Nations (2007-04, Farrar Straus and Giroux).
- Michael Isikoff and David Corn, Hubris: The Inside Story of
Spin, Scandal, and the Selling of the Iraq War (Crown).
- Paul Joseph, Are Americans Becoming More Peaceful?
- Eric Klinenberg, Fighting for Air: The Battle to Control
America's Media (2007-01, Henry Holt).
- Barry M Lando, Web of Deceit: The History of Western
Complicity in Iraq, From Churchill to Kennedy to George W Bush
(2007-01, Other Press).
- Lewis Lapham, Pretensions to Empire: Notes on the Criminal
Folly of the Bush Administration (2006-09, New Press).
- Steven D Levitt/Stephen J Dubner, Freakonomics: A Rogue
Economist Explains the Hidden Side of Everything (2006-11,
Harper Collins, paperback).
- T. Christian Miller, Blood Money: A Story of Wasted Billions,
Lost Lives and Corporate Greed in Iraq (Little, Brown).
- Zeev Maoz, Defending the Holy Land: A Critical Analysis of
Israel's Security and Foreign Policy (2006-04, University of
- Vali Nasr, The Shia Revival: How Conflicts Within Islam Will
Shape the Future (WW Norton).
- Benjamin L Page with Marshall W Bouton, The Foreign Policy
Disconnect: What Americans Want From Our Leaders but Don't Get
(University of Chicago Press).
- Ilan Pappe, The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine
- Fred Pearce: When the Rivers Run Dry: Water -- The Defining
Crisis of the Twenty-First Century (2007-03, Beacon Press,
- Sheldon Rampton and John Stauber, The Best War Ever: Lies,
Damned Lies, and the Mess in Iraq (paperback). I've read
their previous Weapons of Mass Deception: The Uses of Propaganda
in Bush's War in Iraq.
- James Risen, State of War: The Secret History of the CIA and
the Bush Administration (Simon & Schuster).
- Gerry Schumacher, A Bloody Business: America's War Zone
Contractors and the Occupation of Iraq (MBI).
- Joseph E. Stiglitz, Making Globalization Work (WW
Norton). Presumably this is a popularization of a more technical book
that Stiglitz co-authored, Fair Trade for All: How Trade Can Promote
Development. I've read the latter.
- Cass R. Sunstein, David Schkade, Lisa M. Ellman, Andres Sawicki,
Are Judges Political? (Brookings Institution).
- Barry Werth, 31 Days: Gerald Ford, the Nixon Pardon and a
Government in Crisis (2007-02, Knopf, paperback).
- David S Wyman, The Abandonment of the Jews: America and the
Holocaust, 1941-1945 (2007-04, New Press, paperback).
These books also look to be worthwhile, but are outside of my
interest areas or likely to be redundant.
- Cynthia Barnett, Mirage: Florida and the Vanishing Water of
the Eastern U.S. (2007-04, Regional).
- Sidney Blumenthal, How Bush Rules: Chronicles of a Radical
Regime (Princeton University Press).
- Eric Boehlert, Lapdogs: How the Press Rolled Over for Bush
- Douglas Brinkley, The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New
Orleans, and the Mississippi Coast (Harper Collins).
- Robert M. Cassidy, Counterinsurgency and the Global War on
Terror: Military Culture and Irregular War (Greenwood).
- Michael Cobb, God Hates Fags: The Rhetorics of Religious
Violence (New York University Press).
- Joe Conason, It Can Happen Here: Authoritarian Peril in the
Age of Bush (2007-02, St. Martin's Press).
- Christopher Cooper, Disaster: Hurricane Katrina and the Failure
of Homeland Security (Henry Holt).
- Harm de Blij, Why Geography Matters: Three Challenges Facing
America: Climate Change, the Rise of China, and Global Terrorism
(2007-01, Oxford University Press, paperback).
- Brian Doherty, Radicals for Capitalism: A History of the
Modern American Libertarian Movement (PublicAffairs).
- Peter Eisner, The Italian Letter: How the Bush Administration
Used a Fake Letter to Build the Case for War in Iraq (2007-04,
- Gail A Eisnitz, Slaughterhouse: The Shocking Story of Greed,
Neglect, and Inhumane Treatment Inside the US Meat Industry
(2006-11, Prometheus Books, paperback).
- Barbara Finlay, George W Bush and the War on Women: Turning
Back the Clock on Progress (2006-11, Zed Books).
- John Ghazvinian, Untapped: The Scramble for Africa's Oil
- Gershom Gorenberg, The Accidental Empire: Israel and the
Birth of the Settlements, 1967-1977 (2006-03, Times Books;
2007-03, Henry Holt, paperback).
- Karen J. Greenberg, ed., Torture Papers: The Road to Abu
- Jed Home, Breach of Faith: Hurricane Katrina and the Near
Death of a Great American City (Random House).
- Robert D Hormats, The Price of Liberty: Paying for America's
Wars (Henry Holt). Goldman Sachs vice-chairman. Henry Kissinger
sez, "Robert Hormats mounts a compelling argument that America faces
large-scale economic catastrophe due to lack of a long-term, fiscally
sound strategy for meeting military and security needs as well as
- Lynn Hunt, Inventing Human Rights: A History (WW
- ST Joshi, The Angry Right: Why Conservatives Keep Getting It
- Alan Kennedy-Shaffer, Denial and Deception: A Study of the Bush
Administration's Rhetorical Case for Invading Iraq (Universal,
- Sonia Kolhatkar/James Ingalls, Bleeding Afghanistan:
Washington, Warlords, and the Propaganda of Silence (2006-10,
Seven Stories, paperback).
- Adam LeBor, "Complicity With Evil": The United Nations in
the Age of Modern Genocide (2006-11, Yale University Press).Miguel Leon-Portillo, Broken Spears: The Aztec Account of the
Conquest of Mexico (2007-04, Beacon Press, paperback).
- Mark London, The Last Forest: The Amazon in the Age of
Globalization (2007-02, Random House).
- Loren D Lybarger, Identity and Religion in Palestine: The
Struggle Between Islamism and Secularism in the Occupied Territories
(2007-03, Princeton University Press).
- Lisa Magonelli, Oil on the Brain: Adventures From the Pump
to the Pipeline (2007-01, Doubleday).
- Joseph Marguilies, Guantánamo and the Abuse of Presidential
Power (Simon & Schuster).
- Stephanie Mencimer, Blocking the Courthouse Door: How the
Republican Party and Its Corporate Allies Are Taking Away Your Right
to Sue (2006-12, Simon & Schuster).
- Steven H. Miles, M.D., Oath Betrayed: Torture, Medical Complicity,
and the War on Terror (Random House).
- Paul Molyneaux, Swimming in Circles: Aquaculture and the Death
of Our Oceans (2007-01, Avalon, paperback).
- Augustus Richard Norton, Hezbollah: A Short History
(2007-03, Princeton University Press).
- Ronald L Numbers, The Creationists: From Scientific Creationism
to Intelligent Design (2006-11, Harvard University Press,
- Michael B Oren, Power, Faith, and Fantasy: America in the
Middle East: 1776 to the Present (WW Norton).
- Robert Young Pelton, Licensed to Kill: Hired Guns in the War
on Terror (Crown).
- Geoffrey Perret, Commander in Chief: How Truman, Johnson, and
Bush Turned a Presidential Power Into a Threat to America's Future
(2007-02, Farrar Straus and Giroux).
- Frances Fox Piven, Challenging Authority: How Ordinary People
Change America (2006-11, Rowman & Littlefield).
- Anna Politkovskaya, Putin's Russia: Life in a Failing
Democracy (2006-12, Henry Holt, paperback).
- Tariq Ramadan, In the Footsteps of the Prophet: Lessons From
the Life of Muhammad (2006-12, Oxford University Press).
- Dina Rasor/Robert Bauman, Betraying Our Troops: The Destructive
Results of Privatizing War (2007-05, Palgrave Macmillan).
- Erik Reece, Lost Mountain: A Year in the Vanishing Wilderness:
Radical Strip Mining and the Devastation of Appalachia (2007-02,
- J Timmons Roberts, A Climate of Injustice: Global Inequality,
North-South Politics, and Climate Policy (2006-12, MIT Press).
- Joseph Romm, Hell and High Water: Global Warming -- the Solution
and the Politics -- and What We Should Do (2006-12, Harper
- Jeremy Scahill, Blackwater: The Rise of the World's Most
Powerful Mercenary Army (2007-02, Avalon).
- Danny Schechter, When News Lies: Media Complicity and the Iraq
War (Select Books, paperback + DVD).
- Richard Sennett, The Culture of the New Capitalism
(2007-01, Yale University Press).
- Stephen A. Silvinski, Buck Wild: How Republicans Blew the Bank
and Became the Party of Big Government (Thomas Nelson).
- Daniel Jordan Smith, A Culture of Corruption: Everyday
Deception and Popular Discontent in Nigeria (2006-11, Princeton
- Norman Solomon, War Made Easy: How Presidents and Pundits
Keep Spinning Us to Death (2005-06, John Wiley).
- Steven Strasser, ed, The Abu Ghraib Investigations: The
Official Independent Panel and Pentagon Reports on the Shocking Prisoner
Abuse in Iraq (Public Affairs, paperback).
- Ray Takeyh, Hidden Iran: Paradox and Power in the Islamic
Republic (2006-10, Henry Holt).
- Helen Thomas, Watchdogs of Democracy? The Waning Washington
Press Corps and How It Has Failed the Public (Simon &
- Werner Troesken, The Great Lead Water Pipe Disaster
(2006-12, MIT Press).
- Jonathan B Tucker, War of Nerves: Chemical Warfare From
World War I to Al-Qaeda (2007-02, Knopf, paperback).
- Peter Douglas Ward, Under a Green Sky: Global Warming,
the Mass Extinctions of the Past, and What They Can Tell Us About
Our Future (2007-04, Collins). I've read a lot of Ward in
the past, but this strikes me as a stretch.
- David Warsh, Knowledge and the Wealth of Nations: A Story
of Economic Discovery (WW Norton).
- Harriet A Washington, Medical Apartheid: The Dark History
of Medical Experimentation on Black Americans From Colonial Times
to the Present (2007-01, Doubleday).
- Maureen Webb, Illusions of Security: Global Surveillance and
Democracy in the Post 9/11 World (2006-11, City Lights Books,
- Kristian Williams, American Methods: Torture and the Logic
of Domination (South End Press).
- W Frederick Zimmerman, ed., Basic Documents About the
Treatment of Detainees at Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib ().
- Howard Zinn, A Power Governments Cannot Suppress
(City Lights, paperback).
These are items that might be worth having for reference purposes,
but aren't likely to be recommended for interpretive insights.
- Stanley Crouch, Considering Genius: Writings on Jazz
- Simon Frith, ed., The Cambridge Companion to Pop and Rock
(2007-02, Cambridge University Press).
- The Iraq Study Group Report (2006-12, Knopf).
- George McGovern and William R. Polk, Out of Iraq: A Practical
Plan for Withdrawal Now (Simon & Schuster, paperback).
Read the Harpers excerpt. Better than I expected.
- Riverbend, Baghdad Burning II: Girl Blog From Iraq
(2006-09, Feminist Press at CUNY, paperback).
- Melissa Rossi, What Every American Should Know About Europe:
The Hot Spots, Hotshots, Political Muck-Ups, Cross-Border Sniping, and
Cultural Chaos of Our Transatlantic Cousins (2006-11, Penguin,
- John Tirman, 100 Ways America Is Screwing Up the World
- Mick Winter, Peak Oil Prep: Prepare for Peak Oil, Climate
Change, and Economic Collapse (2006-11, Westsong, paperback).
- Bob Woodward, State of Denial: Bush at War, Part III
(Simon & Schuster). Haven't read the first two parts either, which
seem to be of value mostly for original quotes and lessons on how the
press got suckered.
- Worldwatch Institute, State of the World 2007: An Urban
Planet (2007-01, WW Norton, paperback).
These are books that could go up or could go down. Some I haven't
really looked at yet; others are simply unclear, compromised, or
- John Agresto, Mugged by Reality: The Liberation of Iraq and the
Failure of Good Intentions (2007-03, Encounter Books).
- Kwame Anthony Appiah: Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of
Strangers (2007-02, WW Norton, paperback).
- Ravi Batra, The New Golden Age: The Coming Revolution Against
Political Corruption and Economic Chaos (2007-01, Palgrave
- Robert K. Brigham, Is Iraq Another Vietnam? (Public
Affairs). Seems doubtful this comparison by a McNamara collaborator
will pan out.
- Bryan Douglas Caplan, The Myth of the Rational Voter: Why
Democracies Choose Bad Policies (2007-04, Princeton University
- Jeff Chester, Digital Destiny: New Media and the Future of
Democracy (2007-01, New Press).
- Clayton E Cramer, Armed America: The Remarkable Story of
How and Why Guns Became as American as Apple Pie (2007-02,
- Matthew Crenson, Presidential Power: Unchecked and
Unbalanced (2007-04, WW Norton).
- Lanny Davis, Scandal: How "Gotcha" Politics Is Destroying
America (Palgrave Macmillan): From a Clinton Admin insider,
who most likely has his own ax to grind.
- Daniel H Deudney, Bounding Power: Republican Security Theory
From the Polis to the Global Village (2006-12, Princeton
- Tyler Drumheller, On the Brink: An Insider's Account of How
the White House Compromised American Intelligence (2006-11,
- Ronald Dworkin, Is Democracy Possible Here? Principles for a
New Political Debate (Princeton University Press).
- Mary Eberstadt, ed, Why I Turned Right: Leading Baby Boom
Conservatives Chronicle Their Political Journeys (2007-02,
Simon & Schuster).
- Juliet Eilperin, Fight Club Politics: How Partisanship Is
Poisoning the House of Representatives (Rowman & Littlefield).
- James Fallows, Blind Into Baghdad: America's War in Iraq
(Vintage, paperback). Collects his Atlantic Monthly reports. I'm
suspicious whenever Andrew Sullivan and David Brooks applaud.
- Stephen Flynn, Edge of Disaster: Rebuilding a Resilient
Nation (Random House). A professional disaster-monger, last
time wrote America the Vulnerable: How Our Government Is Failing
to Protect Us From Terrorism. This time argues that natural
disasters may be even worse.
- David Friend, Watching the World Change: The Stories Behind
the Images of 9/11 (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).
- Indur Goklany, The Improving State of the World: Why We're
Living Longer, Healthier, More Comfortable Lives on a Cleaner Planet
(2007-01, Cato Institute, paperback).
- Jeffrey Goldberg, Prisoners: A Muslim and a Jew Across the
Middle East Divide (Knopf).
- David Gratzer, The Cure: How Capitalism Can Save American
Health Care (Encounter Books).
- John Gribbin, The Origins of the Future: Ten Questions for
the Next Ten Years (2006-11, Yale University Press).
- Regina Herzlinger, Who Killed Healthcare? America's $2 Trillion
Medical Problem, and the Consumer-Driven Cure (2007-04,
- Stanley Hoffmann, Chaos and Violence: What Globalization,
Failed States, and Terrorism Mean for US Foreign Policy
(Rowman & Littlefield).
- Douglas Hofstadter, I Am a Strange Loop (2007-03,
- Sid Jacobson and Ernie Colon, The 9/11 Report: A Graphic
Adaptation (Hill & Wang).
- Barbara J King, Evolving God: A Provocative View on the Origins
of Religion (2007-01, Doubleday).
- Steven E Landsburg, More Sex Is Safer Sex: The Unconventional
Wisdom of Economics (2007-04, Simon & Schuster).
- Eric Larsen, A Nation Gone Blind: America in the Age of
Simplification and Deceit (Avalon, paperback).
- Charlie Leduff, US Guys: The True and Twisted Mind of the
American Man (2007-02, Penguin).
- James Mann, China Fantasy: How Our Leaders Explain Away
Chinese Repression (Penguin).
- Amy Dockser Marcus, Jerusalem 1913: The Origins of the
Arab-Israeli Conflict (2007-04, Penguin).
- Greil Marcus, The Shape of Things to Come: Prophecy and the
American Voice (Farrar, Straus and Giroux).
- William J Middendorf, A Glorious Disaster: Barry Goldwater's
Presidential Campaign and the Origins of the Conservative Movement
(2006-11, Basic Books).
- Brian Patrick Mitchell, 8 Ways to Run the Country: A New
and Revealing Look at Left and Right (2006-11, Greenwood).
- Sharon Moalem, Survival of the Sickest: A Medical Maverick
Discovers Why We Need Disease (2007-02, Harper Collins).
- Scott E Page, The Difference: How the Power of Diversity
Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools, and Societies (2007-01,
Princeton University Press).
- Bill Henry Paul, Future Energy: How the New Oil Industry Will
Change People, Politics and Portfolios (2007-02, John Wiley).
- Charles Pernow, The Next Catastrophe: Reducing Our Vulnerabilities
to Natural, Industrial, and Terrorist Disasters (2007-04,
Princeton University Press).
- Ann Pettifor, The Coming First World Debt Crisis
(2006-11, Palgrave Macmillan).
- Orrin H Pilkey/Linda Pilkey-Jarvis, Useless Arithmetic: Why
Environmental Scientists Can't Predict the Future (2006-12,
Columbia University Press). It's probably easy enough to shoot holes
in mathematical models, but where does that leave us?
- Arnold S Relman, A Second Opinion: Rescuing America's
Healthcare (2007-04, Perseus).
- Bamaby Rogerson, The Heirs of Muhammad (2007-02,
- Barry Steidle, The Devil Came on Horseback: Bearing Witness
to Genocide in Darfur (2007-03, Perseus).
- Milton Viorst, Storm From the East: The Struggle Between the
Arab World and the Christian West (2007-04, Random House,
- James Waller, Becoming Evil: How Ordinary People Commit
Genocide and Mass Killing (2007-01, Oxford University Press,
- Stephen M. Walt, Taming American Power: The Global Response
to US Primacy (WW Norton, paperback).
There are lots of books I have no interest in. So many, in fact,
that it's necessary to subdivide them. In many cases they're just
wrong-headed. Some may have value, but look to be too personal, at
too small a scale to be very useful to me. (Of course, some books
like that turn out to be exceptions.)
My "no interest" lists continued in the extended body.