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book reviews



all non-fiction,
carefully chosen for excellence,
rather than because I was given a free copy
or merely since it's the latest thing

66. Eleanor Maccoby: The Two Sexes: growing up apart, coming together
(Belknap Press: 1998)

65. Sarah Blaffer Hrdy: Mothers and Others: the evolutionary origins of mutual understanding
(Belknap Press: 2009)

64. Richard Wrangham: Catching Fire: how cooking made us human
(Basic Books: 2009)

63. Paul Pierson: Politics in Time: history, institutions, and social analysis
(Princeton University Press: 2004)

62. Albert O. Hirschman: Exit, Voice, and Loyalty: responses to decline in firms, organizations, and states
(Harvard University Press: 1970)

61. Deborah Tannen: You Just Donít Understand: men and women in conversation
(William Morrow: 1990)

60. Christopher Boehm: Hierarchy in the Forest: the evolution of egalitarian behavior
(Harvard University Press: 1999)

59. James R. Beniger: The Control Revolution: technological and economic origins of the information society
(Harvard University Press: 1986)

58. John Kay: The Truth About Markets: why some nations are rich, but most remain poor
(Penguin: 2004)

57. Paul Ormerod: The Death of Economics
(Faber & Faber: 1994)

56. Gunther Kress: Learning to Write (2nd ed.)
(Routledge: 1994)

55. John Dunn: Setting the People Free: the story of democracy
(Atlantic Books: 2005)

54. Joel Mokyr: The Gifts of Athena: historical origins of the knowledge economy
(Princeton University Press: 2002)

53. Robert Levine: The Power of Persuasion: how we’re bought and sold
(Wiley: 2003)

52. Peter Turchin: War and Peace and War: the life cycles of imperial nations
(Pi Press: 2006)

51. Richard A. Lanham: The Economics of Attention: style and substance in the age of information
(Chicago University Press: 2006)

50. Mary Douglas & Steven Ney: Missing Persons: a critique of the social sciences
(University of California Press: 1998)

49. Mary Douglas: How Institutions Think
(Syracuse University Press: 1986)

48. Katharine Nelson: Young Minds in Social Worlds: experience, meaning, and memory
(Harvard University Press: 2007)

47. Stewart Brand: How Buildings Learn: what happens after they’re built
(Viking: 1994)

46. Donald A. Norman: The Design of Everyday Things
(Currency/Doubleday: 1990)

45. Margaret Donaldson: Human Minds: an exploration
(Allen Lane: 1992)

44. Jack Cohen & Ian Stewart: The Collapse of Chaos: discovering simplicity in a complex world
(Viking: 1994)

43. Steven Mithen: The Singing Neanderthals: the origins of music, language, mind and body
(Weidenfeld & Nicolson: 2005)

42. Charles Taylor: Sources of the Self: the making of modern identity
(Cambridge University Press: 1989)

41. Frank R. Wilson: The Hand: how its use shapes the brain, language, and human culture
(Vintage: 1998)

40. Reuben Hersh: What is Mathematics, Really?
(Jonathan Cape: 1997)

39. Jane Jacobs: Cities and the Wealth of Nations: principles of economic life
(Random House: 1984)

38. Mancur Olson: The Rise & Decline of Nations: economic growth, stagflation, and social rigidities
(Yale: 1982)

37. Edward T. Hall: The Silent Language
(Anchor: 1990)

36. Norman Yoffee: Myths of the Archaic State: evolution of the earliest cities, states, and civilizations
(Cambridge: 2005)

35. Karen Armstrong: The Great Transformation: the beginning of our religious traditions
(Knopf: 1996)

34. Geoffrey Lloyd & Nathan Sivin: The Way And The Word: Science and Medicine in early China and Greece
(Yale: 2002)

33. Peter Hobson: The Cradle of Thought: exploring the origins of thinking
(Macmillan: 2002)

32. Edward R. Tufte: Envisioning Information
(Graphics Press: 1990)

31. Steven Vogel: Cat’s Paws and Catapults: mechanical worlds of nature and people
(Norton: 1998)

30. James S. Fishkin: The Voice of the People: public opinion & democracy
(Yale: 1997)

29. Barbara Ehrenreich: Blood Rites: origins and history of the passions of war
(Metropolitan Books: 1997)

28. Jared Diamond: Guns, Germs & Steel: a short history of everybody for the last 13,000 years
(Jonathan Cape: 1997)

27. William Benzon: Beethoven’s Anvil: music in mind and culture
(Basic Books: 2001)

26. Ernst Mayr: This is Biology: the science of the living world
(Belknap/Harvard:1997)

25. Henry Plotkin: The Nature of Knowledge: concerning adaptations, instinct, and the evolution of intelligence
(Allen Lane: 1994)

24. Robert B. Edgerton: Sick Societies: challenging the myth of primitive harmony
(The Free Press: 1992)

23. Elkhonon Goldberg: The Wisdom Paradox: how your mind can grow stronger as your brain grows older
(Gotham Books: 2005)

22. Eric A. Havelock: The Liberal Temper in Greek Politics
(Yale University Press: 1964)

21. John Lewis Gaddis: The Landscape of History: how historians map the past
(Oxford University Press: 2002)

20. Theodore Zeldin: An Intimate History of Humanity
(HarperCollins: 1994)

19. W.G. Runciman: The Social Animal
(Harper Collins: 1998)

18. Thomas L. Thompson: The Bible in History: how writers create a past
(Pimlico: 2000)

17. John Keegan: A History of Warfare
(Hutchinson: 1993)

16. Eric A. Havelock: The Muse Learns to Write: reflections on orality and literacy from antiquity to the present
(Yale University Press: 1986)

15. Ernest Gellner: Plough, Sword, and Book: the structure of human history
(Collins Harville: 1988)

14. John Ralston Saul: On Equilibrium
(Penguin Books: 2001)

13. Elinor Ostrom: Governing the Commons: the evolution of institutions for collective action
(Cambridge University Press: 1990)

12. Walter Burkert: Creation of the Sacred: tracks of biology in early religions
(Harvard University Press: 1996)

11. J.R. McNeill & William H. McNeill: The Human Web: a birds-eye view of human history
(Norton: 2003)

10. Merlin Donald: Origins of the Modern Mind
(Harvard: 1991)

9. Georges Duby: The Early Growth of the European Economy
(Weidenfeld & Nicolson: 1974)

8. Melvin Konner: The Tangled Wing: biological constraints on the human spirit
(Times Books: 2002)

7. Peter J. Wilson: The Domestication of the Human Species
(Yale: 1988)

6. Jonathan Kingdon: Lowly Origin: where, when, and why our ancestors first stood up
(Princeton: 2003)

5. Kieran Egan: The Educated Mind: how cognitive tools shape our understanding
(Chicago: 1997)

4. Elizabeth L. Eisenstein: The Printing Revolution in Early Modern Europe
(Cambridge: 1983)

3. David Hackett Fischer: The Great Wave: price revolutions and the rhythm of history
(Oxford: 1996)

2.  Jane Jacobs: Systems of Survival: a dialogue on the moral foundations of commerce & politics
(Random House: 1992)

1. Stephen Toulmin: Cosmopolis: the hidden agenda of modernity
(Free Press: 1990)



+
here's a list
of those forthcoming


Douglas J. Amy: Behind the Ballot Box: a citizen's guide to voting systems
(Praeger: 2000)

Natalie Angier: Woman: an intimate geography
(Virago: 1999)

Simon Baron-Cohen: The Essential Difference: men, women, and the extreme male brain
(Allen Lane: 2003)

Isaiah Berlin: Three Critics of the Enlightenment: Vico, Hamann, Herder
(Pimlico: 2000)

Christopher Boehm: Hierarchy in the Forest: the evolution of egalitarian behavior
(Harvard: 1999)

Wayne C. Booth: Modern Dogma and the Rhetoric of Assent
(Chicago: 1974)

Jesse L. Byock: Viking Age Iceland
(Penguin: 2001)

William H. Calvin: A Brain for all Seasons: human evolution & abrupt climate change
(Chicago: 2002)

Robert Cantwell: Bluegrass Breakdown: the making of the old southern sound
(Illinois: 1984)

John Miller Chernoff: African Rhythm and African Sensibility
(Chicago: 1979)

David Christian: Maps of Time: an introduction to big history
(California: 2004)

Robert B.Cialdini: Influence: the psychology of persuasion
(Quill: 1993)

John Cowley & Paul Oliver (eds.): The New Blackwell Guide to Recorded Blues
(Blackwell: 1996)

Anthony Damasio: Descartes' Error: emotion, reason, and the human brain
(Putnam: 1994)

Anthony Damasio: The Feeling of What Happens
(Random House: 1999)

Anthony Damasio: Looking for Spinoza: joy, sorrow, and the feeling brain
(Harcourt: 2003)

Terrance Deacon: The Symbolic Species: the co-evolution of language and the human brain
(Faber & Faber: 1997)

Christian de Duve: Vital Dust
(Basic Books: 1995)

Sebastian de Grazia: Machiavelli in Hell
(Harvester: 1989)

Hernando de Soto: The Mystery of Capital
(Bantam: 2000)

Frans de Waal: Good Natured: the origins of right and wrong in humans and other animals
(Harvard: 1996)

Frans de Waal & Frans Lanting: Bonobo: the forgotten ape
(California: 1997)

Maria DiBattista: Fast Talking Dames
(Yale: 2001)

Merlin Donald: A Mind So Rare: the evolution of human consciousness
(Norton: 2001)

Margaret Anne Doody: The True Story of the Novel
(HarperCollins: 1997)

Dietrich Dorner: The Logic of Failure: recognising and avoiding error in complex situations
(Perseus: 1996)

Robert Drews: The End of the Bronze Age
(Princeton: 1993)

Robin Dunbar: Grooming, Gossip and the Evolution of Language
(Faber & Faber: 1996)

Gerald Edelman: Bright Air, Brilliant Fire: on the matter of the mind
(Basic Books: 1992)

Manfred Eigen & Ruthild Winkler: Laws of the Game
(Princeton: 1993)

Niles Eldredge: Reinventing Darwin: the great evolutionary debate
(Wiley: 1995)

Thomas Ferguson: Golden Rule: the investment theory of party competition
(Chicago: 1995)

Tim Flannery: The Future Eaters: an ecological history of  the Australasian lands and people
(Text Publishing: 1994)

Tim Flannery: The Eternal Frontier: an ecological history of North America and its peoples
(Reed Books: 2001)

Robert H. Frank & Philip J. Cook: The Winner-Take-All Society
(Free Press: 1995)

Robert H. Frank: Luxury Fever: why money fails to satisfy in an era of excess
(Free Press: 1999)

Alan Garner: The Voice That Thunders: essays and lectures
(Harvill: 1997)

Ernest Gellner: Conditions of Liberty: civil society and its rivals
(Hamish Hamilton: 1994)

Ernest Gellner: Nationalism
(New York: 1998)

Elkhonon Goldberg: The Executive Brain: frontal lobes and the civilized mind
(Oxford: 2001)

Robert Gordon: It Came from Memphis
(Faber & Faber: 1995)

John Gray: Berlin
(Fontana: 1995)

John Gray: False Dawn: the delusions of global capitalism
(Granta: 1998)

Mogens Herman Hansen: The Athenian Democracy in the Age of Demosthenes
(Blackwell: 1991)

Victor Davis Hanson: The Other Greeks
(California: 1999)

Russell Hardin: One for All: the logic of group conflict
(Princeton: 1995)

Judith Rich Harris: The Nurture Assumption: why children turn out the way they do
(Free Press: 1998)

Randy Allen Harris: The Linguistics Wars
(Oxford: 1993)

Eric A. Havelock: Preface to Plato
(Blackwell: 1963)

Arthur Herman: The Scottish Enlightenment: the Scots' invention of the modern world
(Fourth Estate: 2001)

Christopher Hill: The English Bible and the Seventeenth-Century Revolution
(Allen Lane: 1993)

W. Daniel Hillis: The Pattern on the Stone: the simple ideas that make computers work
(Basic Books: 1998)

Thomas Hine: The Total Package
(Little, Brown: 1995)

Albert O. Hirschman: Exit, Voice, and Loyalty
(Harvard: 1970)

Douglas Hofstadter et. al.: Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies
(Basic Books: 1995)

Philip K. Howard: The Lost Art of Drawing the Line: how fairness went too far
(Random House: 2001)

Howard Jacobson: Seriously Funny: from the ridiculous to the sublime
(Viking: 1997)

Kay Redfield Jamison: Night Falls Fast: understanding suicide
(Knopf: 1999)

Florence King: Southern Ladies and Gentlemen
(Stein & Day: 1975)

Jonathan Kingdon: Self-Made Man: and his undoing
(Simon & Schuster: 1993)

Norman M. Klein: 7 Minutes: the life and death of the American animated cartoon
(Verso: 1993)

Robert Kuttner: Everything For Sale: the virtues and limits of markets
(Chicago: 1999)

Simon Lamb & David Sington: Earth Story: the shaping of our world
(Princeton: 1998)

Richard A. Lanham: The Electronic Word: democracy, technology, and the arts
(Chicago: 1993)

Sylvia Lawson: The Archibald Paradox: a strange case of authorship
(Allen Lane: 1983)

Gwendolyn Leick: Mesopotamia: the invention of the city
(Allen Lane: 2001)

David Lewis-Williams: The Mind in the Cave
(Thames & Hudson: 2002)

Gilles Lipovetsky: The Empire of Fashion: dressing modern democracy
(Princeton: 1994)

G.E.R. Lloyd: Adversaries and Authorities: investigations into ancient Greek and Chinese science
(Cambridge: 1996)

Tim Low: Feral Future
(Penguin: 1999)

Tim Low: The New Nature
(Viking: 2002)

Charles Keith Maisels: The Emergence of Civilization
(Routledge: 1990)

Martin Malia: The Soviet Tragedy
(Free Press: 1994)

Lynn Margulis & Dorion Sagan: What is Life?
(Weidenfeld & Nicolson: 1995)

Paul Martin: The Healing Mind
(St. Martin's Press: 1997)

Humberto R. Maturana & Francisco J. Varela: The Tree of Knowledge
(Shambhala: 1992)

Ernst Mayr: One Long Argument
(Harvard: 1991)

John McCrone: Going Inside: a tour round a single moment of consciousness
(Faber & Faber: 1991)

Thomas McEvilley: The Shape of Ancient Thought
(Allworth Press: 2002)

John McPhee: Annals of the Former World
(Farrar, Straus & Giroux: 1997)

Mary Midgley: Heart & Mind: the varieties of moral experience
(Harvester Press: 1981)

Mary Midgley: Wickedness: a philosophical essay
(Routledge: 1984)

Geoffrey Miller: The Mating Mind
(Heinemann: 2000)

Steven Mithen: After the Ice: a global human history 20,000-5,000 BC
(Weidenfeld & Nicolson: 2003)

George Monbiot: The Age of Consent: a manifesto for a new world order
(Flamingo: 2003)

Gary Saul Morson & Caryl Emerson: Mikhail Bakhtin: creation of a prosaics
(Stanford: 1990)

Diana C. Mutz: Impersonal Influence
(Cambridge: 1998)

Gary B. Nash: Red, White and Black: the peoples of early America
(Prentice-Hall: 1974)

Donald A. Norman: The Design of Everyday Things
(Doubleday: 1989)

Douglass C. North: Structure and Change in Economic History
(Norton: 1981)

Conor Cruise O'Brien: The Great Melody
(Sinclair-Stevenson: 1992)

Ray Oldenberg: The Great Good Place
(Marlowe & Company: 1999)

Paul Ormerod: The Death of Economics
(Faber & Faber: 1994)

Paul Ormerod: Butterfly Economics: a new general theory of social and economic behaviour
(Faber & Faber: 1998)
(Cambridge: 1990)

Susan Oyama: Evolution's Eye: a systems view of the biology-culture divide
(Duke: 2000)

Orlando Patterson: Freedom (Volume 1): freedom in the making of western culture
(Basic Books: 1991)

Henry Plotkin: Darwin Machines and the Nature of Knowledge
(Penguin: 1995)

Henry Plotkin: Evolution in Mind
(Allen Lane: 1997)

Henry Plotkin: The Imagined World Made Real: towards a natural science of culture
(Allen Lane: 2002)

Robert D. Putnam: Making Democracy Work: civic traditions in modern Italy
(Princeton: 1993)

Israel Rosenfield: The Strange, Familiar, and Forgotten: an anatomy of consciousness
(Knopf: 1992)

Emma Rothschild: Economic Sentiments: Adam Smith, Condorcet, and the enlightenment
(Harvard: 2001)

Robert Sapolsky: Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers
(Owl Books: 2004)

Louis A. Sass: Madness and Modernism
(Basic Books: 1992)

John Ralston Saul: Voltaire's Bastards: the dictatorship of reason in the west
(Viking: 1992)

John Ralston Saul:  Reflections of a Siamese Twin: Canada at the end of the twentieth century
(Viking: 1997)

Sue Savage-Rumbaugh & Roger Lewin: Kanzi: the ape at the brink of the human mind
(Doubleday: 1994)

Juliet B. Schor: The Overworked American: the unexpected decline of leisure
(HarperCollins: 1991)

Jerrold Seigel: Bohemian Paris
(Viking: 1986)

Amartya Sen: Development as Freedom
(Knopf: 1999)

Judith N. Shklar: Ordinary Vices
(Belknap Press: 1984)

Ronald K. Siegel: Intoxication
(Dutton: 1989)

Dan Sperber: Explaining Culture: a naturalistic approach
(Blackwell: 1996)

Daniel L. Stern: The Interpersonal World of the Infant
(Basic Books: 1985)

Joseph Stiglitz: Globalization and its Discontents
(Norton: 2002)

Brian Sutton-Smith: The Ambiguity of Play
(Harvard: 1997)

Deborah Tannen: You Just Don't Understand: men and women in conversation
(William Morrow: 1990)

Deborah Tannen: The Argument Culture: changing the way we argue and debate
(Virago: 1998)

Edward Tenner: Why Things Bite Back: technology and the revenge of unintended consequences
(Knopf: 1997)

Michael Tomasello: The Cultural Origins of Human Cognition
(Harvard: 1999)

Peter van der Merwe: Origins of the Popular Style
(Oxford: 1989)

Christopher Wills & Jeffrey Bada: The Spark of Life: Darwin and the primeval soup
(Oxford: 2000)

Karl A. Wittfogel: Oriental Despotism: a comparative study of total power
(Vintage: 1981)

Herwig Wolfram: History of the Goths
(California: 1988)

Gordon S. Wood: The Radicalism of the American Revolution
(Knopf: 1991)

Alexander Zinoviev: The Reality of Communism
(Gollancz: 1984)




&
if  you think I'm joking,
I already have detailed notes and/or
rough drafts for many of these


+
a note to publishers,
I'm looking for more of similar
quality...not just whatever's on your current release
schedule, and much of the best is (invariably) back catalogue

and, by the way...I paid for all of the above