5 Most Popular Posts: September 2020
- October 5, 2020
We here at the Independent love every piece we run. There are no winners or losers. But all kidding aside, here are September’s winners.
- J.H. Bográn’s review of The Evening and the Morning by Ken Follett (Viking). “This change in formula impacts the passage of time in the book; The Evening and the Morning covers a mere 10 years, from 997 to 1007. But never fear: While the timeline is shorter, the page count remains substantial. Fans of the Kingsbridge series will find, along with big revelations, many Easter eggs buried in seemingly throwaway lines. And this time around, we finally get to see Leper Island in its heyday and learn how the town got its namesake bridge.”
- “We Get the Help and YOU Get the Gift!” “Your donations keep us publishing the reviews, author Q&As, and features you’ve come to love. Now, they mean rewards for you, too! Thanks to the generosity of 50+ authors — including Bob Woodward, George Pelecanos, and Alice McDermott — you’ll receive some wonderful gifts in exchange for your support during this two-week fundraiser. And a matching grant means your donation will go twice as far!”
- “It’s Complicated” by Lupita Aquino. “Latinx Heritage Month comes with a mix of emotions for me. On the one hand, it feels like a perfect opportunity to encourage non-Latinx readers to pick up more Latinx-authored books. On the other, as a Latinx reader myself, it stings to see stacks of these books suddenly appear all over non-Latinx readers’ or publishers’ Instagram accounts, or to see ‘Must-Read Books During Latinx Heritage Month!’ lists circulate from every mainstream media outlet. It’s a stark reminder that these amazing books don’t receive the same deserved spotlight and recognition the rest of the year.”
- Kitty Kelley’s review of Reaganland: America’s Right Turn 1976-1980 by Rick Perlstein (Simon & Schuster). “Reaganland begins in July 1976, when the presidential landscape was Jimmy Carter vs. Jerry Ford, with Ronald Reagan, the sore loser, sitting on his hands, refusing to support Ford but claiming he did. The Gipper seemed too old to run again in 1980 at the age of 69, but Perlstein shows how he managed to become the Cinderella at the Conservative ball, aided by a beleaguered Carter, who never took him seriously, even when it was too late.”
- “The Maestro” by Talmage Boston. “Because [James] Baker maintained a positive image throughout his political career — as supported by two memoirs which covered his many triumphs — until now, those seeking a textured “warts and all” understanding of exactly how he operated and what drove him to achieve as he did during his Washington years have searched in vain. With Baker and Glasser’s new biography [The Man Who Ran Washington], the search now ends. Their book provides a complete, persuasive explanation of how this 45-year-old prominent but politically inexperienced Houston transactional lawyer arrived in the nation’s capital as undersecretary of commerce in July 1975, and within six months, began his meteoric rise to the peak of the DC power pyramid…”