Reviewed by Sarah MacLean

A chance at true love doesn't come around every day, and getting another shot is about as rare as a unicorn. That's what makes second-chance love stories so alluring. This month, three books in which true love comes after a second take.

...Read more

THE RETURN: Fathers, Sons and the Land in Between

Hisham Matar
Random House
ISBN 978-0812994827
243 pages

Reviewed by Tara Bahrampour

The standard-issue prison memoir has a predictable arc: the protagonist is detained, incarcerated, and then freed to reflect on the ...Read more


Giorgia Lupi and Stefanie Posavec
Princeton Architectural
ISBN 978-1616895327
288 pages

Reviewed by David Silverberg

How many times do you check your phone weekly? Or say hello to strangers? How do you spend your time ...Read more

THE OBAMA NATION: Leftist Politics and the Cult of Personality

THE OBAMA NATION: Leftist Politics and the Cult of PersonalityJerome R. Corsi
Pocket Star Books
ISBN 978-1416598060
453 pages

CULTURE OF CORRUPTION: Obama and His Team of Tax Cheats, Crooks, and CroniesMichelle...Read more


William Giraldi
ISBN 978-0871406668
265 pages

Reviewed by Michael Lindgren

William Giraldi's memoir, "The Hero's Body," offers a brilliant anthropological excursion into a world few of us will ever ...Read more

PATIENT H.M.: A Story of Memory, Madness, and Family Secrets

Luke Dittrich
Random House
ISBN 978-0812992731
440 pages

Reviewed by Amy Ellis Nutt

Before iPhones and thumb drives, before Google docs and gigabytes of RAM, memory was more art than artifact. It wasn't a tool or a ...Read more

THE FALL OF HEAVEN: The Pahlavis and the Final Days of Imperial Iran

Andrew Scott Cooper
Henry Holt
ISBN 978-0805098976
587 pages

Reviewed by Nazila Fathi

Mohammad Reza Pahlavi, known as the shah, has always been portrayed as both ruthless and craven - the last emperor of Iran who fled ...Read more


Lauren Belfer
ISBN 978-0062428516
438 pages

Reviewed by Anne Midgette

What if a lost Bach cantata were found that had a text so anti-Semitic that it was not appropriate for performance?

This is a great...Read more

THE HUNTRESS: The Adventures, Escapades, and Triumphs of Alicia Patterson: Aviatrix, Sportswoman, Journalist, Publisher

Alice Arlen and Michael J. Arlen
ISBN 978-1101871133
355 pages

Reviewed by Maura Casey

Alicia Patterson is arguably among the least-known of the handful of female newspaper publishers and editors during the ...Read more

SEOUL MAN: A Memoir of Cars, Culture, Crisis, and Unexpected Hilarity Inside a Korean Corporate Titan

Frank Ahrens
Harper Business
ISBN 978-0062405241
336 pages

Reviewed by Joe Studwell

After 18 years at The Washington Post, Frank Ahrens crossed the Rubicon and became a public relations executive for Hyundai Motor ...Read more


Amy Schumer
ISBN 978-1501139888
336 pages

Reviewed by Emily Yahr, who writes about pop culture for The Washington Post.

Amy Schumer may be an Emmy winning star who sells out arenas on her stand-up tour, but she ...Read more


Lisa McInerney
Tim Duggan
ISBN 978-0804189064
389 pages

Reviewed by Jon Michaud, who is a writer in New York.

The Celtic Tiger, Ireland's turn-of-the century decade of rapid economic growth and prosperity, may have come...Read more


Ann Hood
W.W. Norton
ISBN 978-0393241655
358 pages

Reviewed by Wendy Smith, who is the author of "Real Life Drama: The Group Theatre and America, 1931-1940."

Book groups have been a popular plot device in commercial ...Read more


Edwin Greenwood
Valancourt Books
ISBN 978-1943910380
233 pages

Reviewed by Michael Dirda, who reviews books on Thursdays in The Washington Post Style section.

Back in my bright college days, I took a course in 17th-...Read more


Yiftach Reicher Atir. Translated by Philip Simpson.
ISBN 978-0143129189
260 pages

Reviewed by Richard Lipez, who writes the Don Strachey PI novels under the name Richard Stevenson.

"The English Teacher" is the ...Read more

Captain Comics: 'Fear the Walking Dead,' lackluster mid-season premiere

Books / Comic Books /

If you're on the fence about AMC's "Fear the Walking Dead," the mid-season premiere Aug. 21 didn't give you a lot to work with. But maybe it was just enough.

"Grotesque" was the first episode since May 22, when the central characters from the West Coast version of "The Walking Dead" splintered into three parts. The main group consists of Maddie...Read more

'Hillbilly Elegy' follows one man's harrowing journey from the hollers

Books / Books News /

"Hillbilly Elegy: A Memoir of a Family and Culture in Crisis" by J.D. Vance; HarperCollins (272 pages, $27.99)

There are two very good reasons this year -- or anytime -- for Americans to increase their understanding on an urgent basis of so-called hillbillies, the mostly white people of Scots-Irish stock who are found in the mountainous east-...Read more

'The Fire This Time' expresses sorrow of black Americans

Books / Books News /

"The Fire This Time: A New Generation Speaks about Race" by Jesmyn Ward; Scribner (240 pages, $25)

The murder last year of nine people at the Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, S.C., epitomizes the subject of "The Fire This Time." These African-American churchgoers, including an 87-year-old woman, were murdered by a white racist simply because ...Read more

Review: 'Platinum Doll' by Anne Girard

Books / Books News /

"Platinum Doll" by Anne Girard; MIRA Books (352 pages, $15.99)

"Madame Picasso" author Anne Girard takes on another bewitching figure from the past in "Platinum Doll," a charming fictionalized account of how Jean Harlow became a movie star.

Stunning blonde Harlean Carpenter McGrew, only 17, moves to California in 1928 with her handsome young ...Read more

Author Jessica Winter's debut looks at the 1 percent and how they live

Books / Books News /

"Break in Case of Emergency" by Jessica Winter; Knopf (288 pages, $25.95)

Jessica Winter's debut novel, "Break in Case of Emergency," is an interesting study of the 1 percent and those striving to join their ranks.

A senior features editor at Slate and former culture editor at Time, Winter shines a harsh light on the world of beautiful people ...Read more


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