MixedLibrary Journal... challenging ... Makari takes many complex digressions—some enlightening; some not—as he moves toward his goal of analyzing the use of the word \'xenophobia\' in today’s public life ... While parts of the book may appeal to general readers desiring to find the roots of today’s widespread xenophobia, taken as a whole it is likely to disappoint those who need an introduction to this noteworthy topic.
RaveLibrary Journal... revealing and moving ... [Reeves] devotes most attention to the Battle of the Wilderness ... While Reeves provides effective accounts of troop movements and commanders in the field, he shines in offering insights into the look and feel of these battles from the personal point of view. He focuses on thoughts and actions of several individuals, which he conveys through often-poignant letters and other firsthand accounts ... Reeves shows that battles can reveal heroism not through victories but at a basic level of survival. He has produced an evocative account of the human costs of the Civil War.
Ronald C White
PositiveLibrary JournalWhite shows there still is space on crowded Lincoln bookshelves for a unique work ... Not for a general audience, but this book will delight devoted readers who are searching for ways to more deeply understand the mind and heart of one of the greatest presidents.
RaveLibrary JournalMatteson\'s (Eden\'s Outcasts) sweeping collective biography is not a conventional study of the bloody Civil War battle at Fredericksburg, VA. While skillfully conveying the historical importance of the events of December 1862, he focuses on the significance of the battle in the lives of Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., John Pelham, Walt Whitman, Arthur B. Fuller, and Louisa May Alcott ... With keen biographical skill, Pulitzer Prize-winning author Matteson deftly interweaves the wartime actions of these five with what occurred in their lives and minds before, during, and, for all but one, after the battle ... Matteson also effectively demonstrates how the lives of these individuals connected with more familiar characters of the battle and war ... Highly recommended for fans of historical biography, especially as it intersects with the Civil War.
Jamie K. McCallum
PositiveLibrary JournalMcCallum\'s book is rich with examples of middle- and working-class responses to job-related time pressures. A few cases seem quirky (1973 astronaut in-space strike or a strippers\' union protest), but even those fit well with his theme that workers without control over their time will, too often tragically, buckle under the conditions or, through remarkable effort, resist ... A well-focused chapter on changes in the welfare system reveals the role of government in demanding workers\' time ... Subtly drawing on classic Marxian theory that capitalism steals laborers\' lives as well as their work, McCallum\'s book will find a welcome audience among those concerned about global working conditions.
PositiveLibrary JournalIn this challenging and rewarding book, journalist and activist Lovato passionately weaves his own highly personal account with those of the people of El Salvador along with Salvadorans in the United States ... The book is not particularly easy to read, in part because of the sometimes-violent content, but also because Lovato’s work moves dizzyingly back and forth in time and place. ... Lovato’s revealing story enables us to look within minds and hearts that have been molded by immigrants’ experiences in their home country and their adopted one. A worthwhile account that brings a personal face to a complex, nuanced issue.
Jordan Ritter Conn
PositiveLibrary JournalThe parallel stories of the brothers’ lives is informative and deeply moving. The emotional narrative of their Syrian home will help readers to better understand why people choose to leave and why others stay.
PositiveLibrary JournalBased heavily on the refugees’ own accounts and supplemented by the author’s research, this work will be valued by general readers interested in the stories of recent refugees.
Jia Lynn Yang
PositiveLibrary JournalA clear, well-crafted historical overview of U.S. immigration, and the people who shaped it. Yang defines the issues these debates raised but never settled in a way that informs without overwhelming readers.
PositiveLibrary JournalGoudeau\'s work with a refugee resettlement agency in Texas informs her intimate portrait of two women whose families sought safety in the United States. By alternately focusing on the individual experiences of Mu Naw from Myanmar and Hasna from Syria, the author humanizes their departures from their homes, the complex and frightening refugee process they encountered, and their different experiences ... An excellent choice for readers seeking to understand the human effects of government immigration and refugee policy. Goudeau\'s sometimes heartbreaking narratives personalize the refugee crisis in ways cold news accounts cannot.
Donald L. Miller
PositiveLibrary JournalMiller provides important context for the final siege of Vicksburg by explaining why the city was vital to control of the Mississippi and how naval accomplishments made possible maneuvers employed by Grant’s soldiers during their halting advances toward the city. He superbly integrates events in Washington, keeping primary attention on those in the field of battle and emphasizing the role of freedmen in the victory ... Skillful writing makes Miller’s latest work a highly recommended and readable addition to the voluminous library of Civil War histories.
PositiveLibrary JournalWith the exception of Viet Thanh Nguyen’s The Displaced, no similar recent collection of evocative reflections on the migration experience exists. This will appeal to students and general readers, if only as a starting point for further exploration.
MixedLibrary JournalBesides recording his efforts to follow Jackson’s route, Cleary opines that contemporary lack of appreciation for the sort of Southern valor that Jackson represented decries the demise of historical knowledge and preservation of Civil War history. Cleary’s discursive commentary includes quirky remarks about popular culture and occasional condescending observations about people he encounters. He mentions the nation’s current racial and social divisions and expresses his disappointment that more people do not revere Jackson as much as he does ... Although the book may appeal to devoted fans of this hero of the Confederacy, it fails to provide new insight into Jackson’s character or accomplishments.
MixedLibrary JournalMartin employs prose that occasionally becomes overly dramatic and excessively florid. He, too, frequently speculates as to what individuals, including President Lincoln, must have been thinking ... this work lacks the depth of research of James McPherson’s concise Crossroads of Freedom (2002) and the breadth of Stephen W. Sears’s classic Landscape Turned Red (1983). Yet the book may still be useful as a readable introduction for those unfamiliar with this crucial battle.