MixedBooklistWritten in the 1970s and set fifty years earlier, Go Back at Once is a strange story, not only due to the odd dreams and surreal happenings surrounding the main characters but also because of the historical context needed for a contemporary reader to fully appreciate it ... For fans of cutting remarks, philosophy, and scandalous divorcées.
PositiveBooklist... provides a fascinating look at timekeeping devices throughout history and the societal roles they’ve filled ... A quick but thoughtful read ensuring you will never look at your alarm clock or smartphone the same way again. Highly recommend for fans of microhistories like Mark Kurlansky’s Salt.
PositiveBooklistThe product of a NEH Public Scholars Fellowship, the work is presented in a straightforward manner for a general audience. Romm covers necessary background for the era as well as details of major players. The most striking features are the illustrations made of the remains found at the burial site of the last members of the Band ... Through digital manipulation, the text provides a comprehensive view of all the bodies together as they would have been discovered. Romm also provides an extensive reading list and a link to his website for foreign language materials for those interested in more detail on this fascinating unit.
Alberto Angela, tr. Katherine Gregor
PositiveBooklistCleopatra is centered as a catalytic figure, someone whose movements affected not only her contemporary world but the greater view of history. Her acumen and intelligence are detailed as well as her beauty, though it is admitted that the latter is frequently drawn from biased accounts that painted her as only a seductress. The political machinations, betrayal, and battles may appeal to those fans of George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series interested in a real-world game of thrones.
PositiveBooklist... lively ... Chapters dedicated to these women’s lives tell stories that will resonate regardless of locale—tales of defying disapproving families or critics, persistently pursuing dreams, and navigating a world that judges women for their appearances, their loves, and how others react to them. Background details cover the area’s history and social movements as well as the cabaret world’s legacy in the second half of the twentieth century. Cormack’s final message is a hopeful one, reminding readers to focus on what these women accomplished and the impact they had on the world instead of moralizing their lives or painting them as tragic. For fans of theater history, 1920s and ‘30s drama, or stories of complex women.
PositiveBooklistNewitz clearly draws parallels and lessons for the here and now from these once-vast settlements. We are not immune to natural disasters, political upheaval, and labor force abuses. What happens if cities become unlivable for too many? Highly recommended for anyone interested in that question and in what history can tell us about the possibilities for the future.
PositiveBooklistA must read for fans of N.K. Jemisin’s epic fantasy and those who love George R. R. Martin’s Song of Ice and Fire series but want more diverse worlds.
PositiveBooklistWithout his thoughts having survived, the subtitle, An Outsider’s History, feels more aptly applied to sixth century, medieval, and eighteenth-century historians who used Alaric’s deeds to bolster their criticisms of Rome as well as the modern reader peering at a world so far apart but not so unlike our own, in which bigotry, inequity, and hedonism war with ideas of inclusion, freedom, and equal aspirations for all. Anyone who appreciates vividly detailed stories of the past or is morbidly curious about the dying days of a wealthy, self-important, diverse, autocratic global power should pick this up.