Popular non-fiction across the political spectrum
Before he was known for writing about a girl who played with fire, Steig Larsson the journalist researched and exposed extreme right ideals in Sweden for the magazine Expo. A collection of some of his best pieces is one of the more thought-provoking items added this month. American politics are also examined via books on Obama and Fox News.
Healing our history : the challenge of the Treaty of Waitangi / Robert Consedine & Joanna Consedine.
“The Treaty of Waitangi is the most important document in New Zealand’s history. Current Treaty issues and Maori/Pakeha relationships can only be understood within the wider story of New Zealand. As we understand and honour our history, we can acknowledge the need for restoration, healing and right relationships… This 2012 edition updates and expands on the critical issues: the foreshore and seabed debate, Maori access to political power, and the emergence of the Maori Party; the remarkable growth of the Maori economy, self-determination, Maori language and the developments in Maori education; constitutional issues, and the benefits of the Treaty settlement process. New Zealand and all New Zealanders have much to celebrate — and many challenges ahead….” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Arc of empire : America’s wars in Asia from the Philippines to Vietnam / Michael H. Hunt & Steven I. Levine.
“This is a history of four connected wars fought by the United States in eastern Asia between 1899 and 1973. From the Philippines to the Pacific theater of World War II to Korea to Vietnam, Hunt (history, emeritus, Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill) and Levine (history, Univ. of Montana) show how these wars were connected and the intricate ways that they influenced U.S. foreign policy as well as Asia’s culture and politics. The basic premise of the book is that the United States entered these conflicts to spread an imperial doctrine in Asia and hoped to establish a strong foothold in the region politically and militarily…. VERDICT Recommended for readers interested in current events and 20th-century history, especially military history and U.S.-Asia relations.-Jeremy Spencer, Univ. of California. Law Lib., Davis (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” – (adapted from Library Journal summary)
The end of the West : the once and future Europe / David Marquand.
“Has Europe’s extraordinary postwar recovery limped to an end? It would seem so. The United Kingdom, Belgium, France, Italy, and former Soviet Bloc countries have experienced ethnic or religious disturbances, sometimes violent. Greece, Ireland, and Spain are menaced by financial crises. And the euro is in trouble. In The End of the West, David Marquand, a former member of the British Parliament, argues that Europe’s problems stem from outdated perceptions of global power, and calls for a drastic change in European governance to halt the continent’s slide into irrelevance. …. Exploring the baffling contrast between postwar success and current failures, Marquand examines the rebirth of ethnic communities from Catalonia to Flanders, the rise of xenophobic populism, the democratic deficit that stymies EU governance, and the thorny questions of where Europe’s borders end and what it means to be European….” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)
Trickle down tyranny : crushing Obama’s dream of the socialist states of America / Michael Savage.
“It’s difficult to exaggerate Savage’s animus toward Barack Obama. For the conservative radio host, Obama is a “naked Marxist,” who, if re-elected, will make himself “president for life.” Savage (Trickle Up Poverty) tries to lacerate many areas of the Obama administration’s domestic and foreign policy, as well as alleged instances of malfeasance and corruption in the Justice Department and elsewhere…. Savage engages his fans with wild allegations and conspiracy theories, such as the claim that Obama is “determined to give our southwestern states to Mexico”: shrill fearmongering that his listeners have come to accept from a hardened ideologue. Agent: Ian Kleinert, Objective Entertainment. (Apr.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved” – (adapted from Publisher Weekly summary)
Spooks : the unofficial history of MI5 from the first Atom Spy to 7/7, 1945-2009 / Thomas Hennessey & Claire Thomas.
“The real history of MI5 during the era of the Cold War, the IRA & international terrorism. ‘PO Box 500, London W2′; the nondescript address from behind which one of the world’s most famous Secret Services hid: MI5. This book, based on previously secret sources, lifts the lid on Britain’s Security Service. Despite an outstanding war record against German espionage, MI5 failed to prevent Soviet agents like Anthony Blunt penetrating the heart of the British establishment, including MI5 itself.” – (adapted from Syndetics summary)
The Expo files : and other articles by the crusading journalist / Stieg Larsson ; translated from the Swedish by Laurie Thompson ; edited by Daniel Poohl ; with an introduction by Tariq Ali.
“Now almost exclusively known as the author of the bestselling Millennium Trilogy, as a professional journalist Stieg Larsson was an untiring crusader for democracy and equality. As a reporter and editor-in-chief on the journal Expo he researched the extreme right both in Sweden and at an international level. Collected here for the first time are essays and articles on right-wing extremism and racism, on violence against women and women’s rights, on homophobia and honour killings.” – (adapted from Book Jacket summary)
The Fox effect : how Roger Ailes turned a network into a propaganda machine / David Brock, Ari Rabin-Havt, and Media Matters for America.
“Fox News gets subjected to a strong dose of investigative journalism in this book by the leaders of “news watchdog organization” Media Matters for America; the resulting portrait is at best unflattering and at worst sinister. Brock (The Republican Noise Machine) and Rabin-Havt present their evidence, beginning with the “Rise of Roger” Ailes, Fox president and, according to the authors, the driving force behind the network’s transformation from conservative news source to mouthpiece for the Republican Party. …. Photos. (Feb.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.” – (adapted from Publisher Weekly summary)
Hopeless : Barack Obama and the politics of illusion / edited by Jeffrey St. Clair and Joshua Frank.
“The Barack Obama revolution was over before it started, guttered by the politician’s overweening desire to prove himself to the grandees of the establishment. From there on, other promises proved ever easier to break. Here’s the book that dares not let Obama off the hook. It’s all here: the compromises, the backstabbing, the same old imperial ambitions. Covering all major “Obummer” categories since he took office, this fast-paced collection will delight the critical and offer food for thought for those contemplating the 2012 electoral circus—and beyond.” – (adapted from Publisher’s summary)
Rez life : an Indian’s journey through reservation life / David Treuer.
“Treuer (The Translation of Dr. Apelles), a prize-winning writer of fiction and member of Minnesota’s Ojibwe tribe, has fashioned a compelling work of nonfiction, knitting together his own personal narrative, the perspectives of friends and family, and the complex history of reservations and Native and non-Native relations. The result is at once sweeping in its historical and political scope and deeply personal and engaging. …. VERDICT A look into Native life from a Native perspective, this is recommended for anyone interested in how history has shaped Native people and the ways in which Native peoples are shaping their future.-Julie Edwards, Univ. of Montana Libs., Missoula (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.” – (adapted from Library Journal summary)
A single roll of the dice : Obama’s diplomacy with Iran / Trita Parsi.
“Middle East foreign policy expert Parsi (Treacherous Alliance: The Secret Dealings of Israel, Iran, and the United States) looks at the Obama administration’s response-from January 2009 to fall 2010-to Tehran’s march toward nuclear weapons. The U.S. initially used a “hybrid” approach formulated by Dennis Ross, which combined diplomatic “engagement” with the threat of sanctions. According to Parsi, sanctions took the driver’s seat due to Washington’s pervasive mistrust of Iran, as well as pressure from hard-line Republicans and such allies as Israel, Saudi Arabia, and France. … Agent: Deborah Grosvenor. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved” – (adapted from Publisher Weekly summary)