RaveThe Wall Street JournalMr. Whitaker, a veteran newsman whose credits include a stint as the editor of Newsweek, is a lively writer ... It’s biography-driven, with arcs of individual rises and falls; it’s gossipy and vividly descriptive—in short, it’s a highly readable mix of history and journalistic narrative ... Mr. Whitaker is less an archivist and researcher than he is a synthesizer and storyteller. His great service here is pulling widely scattered anecdotes together to make a narrative that had never been fully told.
PositiveThe New York Times Book Review\"It might be said that Everett’s novel suggests that marriage is built on closely guarded secrets — which is not quite the same thing as saying it is built on lies or deception, but rather, in a D. H. Lawrence kind of way, it suggests that marriage makes a certain contradictory impulse plain and even necessary: Marriage is about trying to sustain one’s inviolate self against the encroachment of the familial maw ... The familiarity of these characters and their desires, all a concoction of Kevin’s perspective, is, ironically, what makes the novel absorbing in its simplicity about bourgeois banality and the quest for expression. The book is also quite funny at times. So Much Blue is never quite what you expect, only close.\
MixedThe Washington PostKill ’Em and Leave turns out to be more revelatory about its author than its subject, although the Alan Lomaxesque 'seeking the subject' aspect is engaging. And the author’s honesty gives the book an authority that is never snobbish. McBride writes well, and the fact that he is also a musician allows him to open up dimensions of Brown’s creativity that a non-musician critic could not ... But the informants here are not particularly forthcoming; indeed, most avoid saying anything especially critical about Brown.