Social Sciences Reviews | February 1, 2014

redstarSwift, Will. Pat and Dick: The Nixons, an Intimate Portrait of a Marriage. Threshold Editions. 2014. 336p. photos. notes. index. ISBN 9781451676945. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781451676969. BIOG

patanddick021414Swift’s book begs the question: Could Richard M. Nixon have become president if not for his wife, Pat? Relying on newly released materials housed at the Nixon Presidential Library, including the couple’s earliest correspondence and other of Pat’s archives there, Swift (The Kennedys Amidst the Gathering Storm), a psychologist, begins with the Nixons’ courtship, when the Quaker lawyer Richard, unrelenting in his attentions, convinced his independent and beautiful girlfriend to marry him, making what was arguably the most astute decision of his life. As he progressed in politics, so, too, did Pat sustain him and seek to create an enviably happy home life to present to the media to overcome the impression that the two were cold and distant. An introverted, deeply insecure man by nature, Richard evidently found that the steadfast and loyal presence of his wife made it possible for him to further his political ambitions, until the time when his native insecurity took him a step too far. Swift covers the aftermath of Watergate as experienced by the Nixons and their daughters, through the death of Pat in 1993, followed closely by the end of her husband’s life in 1994. Overall, he gives us among the most nuanced portraits of these two complex individuals that we have yet seen. ­VERDICT For all biography buffs, presidential history buffs, and those who study profiles of marriage.—Lisa Guidarini, Algonquin P.L., IL

redstarFink, Carole K. Cold War: An International History. Westview. 2014. 256p. illus. maps. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780813347950. pap. $30; ebk. ISBN 9780813347967. HIST

coldwar021414The Cold War was a part of our lives for decades before it came to an abrupt end in 1991. It has been described and assessed in a seemingly endless array of volumes, including John Lewis Gaddis’s The Cold War: A New History and editors Melvyn P. Leffler and Odd Arne Westad’s three-volume The Cambridge History of the Cold War. Those readers seeking a well-written single-­volume treatment now can turn to this finely wrought book. Fink (history, emerita, Ohio State Univ.; Defending the Rights of Others) turns her considerable talents to the task of producing a global history of the Cold War that extends back to 1917 when a kind of incipient cold war began between the United States and Russia during the rise of the Soviets and Lenin. Fink also covers the well-known post–World War II Cold War in Europe, but, as per her subtitle, she also explores the war’s impact on the Middle East, Asia, and elsewhere. To help the novice reader, she provides a time line, a glossary, and a list of significant individuals who played key roles in the struggle. VERDICT At a reasonable price and length, and with contents that are eminently readable, Fink’s history is a gem that should be in all 20th-century history collections.—Ed ­Goedeken, Iowa State Univ. Lib., Ames

redstarJacobsen, Annie. Operation Paperclip: The Secret Intelligence Program That Brought Nazi Scientists to America. Little, Brown. Feb. 2014. 576p. photos. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780316221047. $30; ebk. ISBN 9780316221054. HIST

operationpaperclip021414At the climax of World War II in Europe, the U.S. government searched for the intellectual bounty of the Third Reich even as the Allied services were hunting Nazi war criminals. So begins this chilling, compelling, and comprehensive accounting by Jacobsen (Area 51) of one of the most secretive of 20th-century U.S. intelligence programs. No, it wasn’t a secret that German scientists and engineers came to America after the war, but the extent of their loyalty to the Nazi cause was kept hidden. As Jacobsen ably recounts, these men, including rocket scientist Wernher von Braun and physician Walter Schreiber, were ardent Nazis who participated in war crimes including experiments on humans and the use of slave labor to accomplish their goals for Hitler. They were then recruited by both Soviets and Americans to continue their work during the onset of the Cold War. The U.S. government turned a blind eye to these men’s atrocities, helped them avoid justice at Nuremberg, and paid them considerably. In return? Among other things, America won the space race. Built upon archival records, court transcripts, declassified documents, and interviews, Jacobsen’s impressive book plumbs the dark depths of this postwar recruiting and shows the historical truths behind the space race and postwar U.S. dominance. VERDICT Highly recommended for readers in World War II history, espionage, government cover-ups, or the Cold War. [See Prepub Alert, 9/1/13.]—Evan M. ­Anderson, Iowa State Univ. Lib., Ames

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The following titles are reviewed in this month's print issue.
Visit Book Verdict for the full reviews.


Jacobs, Diane. Dear Abigail: The Intimate Lives and Revolutionary Ideas of Abigail Adams and Her Two Remarkable Sisters. Ballantine. Feb. 2014. 512p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780345465061. $28; ebk. ISBN 9780345549846. BIOG

Spiel, Hilde. Fanny von Arnstein: Daughter of the Enlightenment. New Vessel. 2013. 371p. tr. from German by Christine Shuttleworth. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781939931030. pap. $18.99. BIOG

Whitelock, Anna. The Queen’s Bed: An Intimate History of Elizabeth’s Court. Sarah Crichton: Farrar. Feb. 2014. 480p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780374239787. $28. BIOG


Dobrow, Joe. Natural Prophets: From Health Foods to Whole Foods—How the Pioneers of the Industry Changed the Way We Eat and Reshaped American Business. Rodale. Feb. 2014. 288p. notes. ISBN 9781623361792. $26.99; ebk. ISBN 9781623361808. BUS

Harford, Tim. The Undercover Economist Strikes Back: How To Run–or Ruin–an Economy. Riverhead. 2014. 272p. notes. index. ISBN 9781594631405. $27.95;

ebk. ISBN 9781101613887. ECON

Martin, Felix. Money: The Unauthorized Biography. Knopf. Mar. 2014. 336p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780307962430. $27.95; ebk. ISBN 9780307962447. ECON

Yogg, Michael R. Passion for Reality: The Extraordinary Life of the Investing Pioneer Paul Cabot. rev. ed. Columbia Business. Feb. 2014. 272p. notes. index. ISBN 9780231167468. $29.95; ebk. ISBN 9780231537025. BUS


Daddis, Gregory. Westmoreland’s War: Reassessing American Strategy in Vietnam. Oxford Univ. 2014. 320p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9780199316502. $34.95. HIST

Egerton, Douglas R. The Wars of Reconstruction: The Brief, Violent History of America’s Most Progressive Era. Bloomsbury. 2014. 448p. illus. notes. index. ISBN 9781608195664. $30; ebk. ISBN 9781608195749. HIST

Kelly, Catriona. St. Petersburg: Shadows of the Past. Yale Univ. Feb. 2014. 488p. photos. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780300169188. $35. HIST

McAuliffe, Mary. Twilight of the Belle Epoque: The Paris of Picasso, Stravinsky, Proust, Renault, Marie Curie, Gertrude Stein, and Their Friends Through the Great War. Rowman & Littlefield. Mar. 2014. 416p. illus. notes. bibliog.

index. ISBN 9781442221635. $29.95; ebk. ISBN 9781442221642. HIST

An Osage Journey to Europe, 1827–1830: Three French Accounts. Univ. of Oklahoma. (American Exploration & Travel, Vol. 81). 2013. 168p. ed. & tr. from French by William Least Heat-Moon & James K. Wallace. illus. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780806144030. $29.95. HIST

The Scottsboro Boys in Their Own Words: Selected Letters, 1931–1950. McFarland. 2014. 277p. ed. by Kwando M. Kinshasa. photos. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780786472048. pap. $45; ebk. ISBN 9781476603445. HIST

Law & Crime

Bosco, David. Rough Justice: The International Criminal Court in a World of Power Politics. Oxford Univ. 2014. 304p. notes. index. ISBN 9780199844135. $29.95. LAW

Ingram, Jim & James L. Dickerson. The Hero Among Us: FBI Witness Hunter. Sartoris Literary Group. 2013. 250p. photos. ISBN 9780989945431. pap. $19.95; ebk. ISBN 9780989945448. CRIME

Richman, Kimberly D. License To Wed: What Legal Marriage Means to Same-Sex Couples. New York Univ. 2014. 272p. notes. index. ISBN 9780814725467. $39. LAW

Selby, Scott Andrew. A Serial Killer in Nazi Berlin: The Chilling True Story of the S-Bahn Murderer. Berkley. 2014. 320p. maps. notes. index. ISBN 9780425264140. $26.95. CRIME


Glass-Coffin, Bonnie & Oscar Miro-Quesada. Lessons in Courage: Peruvian Shamanic Wisdom for Everyday Life. Rainbow Ridge. 2013. 160p. ISBN 9781937907181. pap. $16.95. PARAPSYCH

Political Science

Friel, Howard. Chomsky and Dershowitz: On Endless War and the End of Civil Liberties. Olive Branch: Interlink. 2013. 376p. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781566569422. $35. POL SCI

Gessen, Masha. Words Will Break Cement: The Passion of Pussy Riot. Riverhead. Feb. 2014. 320p. ISBN 9781594632198. pap. $16. INT AFFAIRS

Moskin, J. Robert. American Statecraft: The Story of the U.S. Foreign Service. Thomas Dunne: St. Martin’s. 2013. 944p. illus. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781250037459. $40; ebk. ISBN 9781250037466. INT AFFAIRS


Krasnow, Iris. Sex After…: Women Share How Intimacy Changes as Life Changes. Gotham. Feb. 2014. 272p. ISBN 9781592408276. $26; ebk. ISBN 9780698148581. PSYCH

Social Science

Brunner, Bernd. The Art of Lying Down: A Guide to Horizontal Living. Melville House. 2013. 176p. tr. from German by Lori Lantz. illus. bibliog. index. ISBN 9781612193090. $19.95. SOC SCI

Chua, Amy & Jed Rubenfeld. The Triple Package: How Three Unlikely Traits Explain the Rise and Fall of Cultural Groups in America. Penguin Pr. Feb. 2014. 304p. notes. index. ISBN 9781594205460. $27.95. SOC SCI

Duberman, Martin. Hold Tight Gently: Michael Callen, Essex Hemphill, and the Battlefield of AIDS. New Pr. Mar. 2014. 368p. notes. ISBN 9781595589453. $27.95;

ebk. ISBN 9781595589651. SOC SCI

Travel & Geography

Murphy, Michael. Eat Dat New Orleans: A Guide to the Unique Food Culture of the Crescent City. Countryman. Feb. 2014. 288p. photos. maps. index. ISBN 9781581572353. pap. $16.95. TRAV

Thorpe, Nick. The Danube: A Journey Upriver from the Black Sea to the Black Forest. Yale Univ. 2014. 328p. illus. maps. notes. bibliog. index. ISBN 9780300181654. $35. TRAV

Wigge, Michael. How To Barter for Paradise: My Journey Through 14 Countries, Trading Up from an Apple to a House in Hawaii. Skyhorse. 2014. 224p. tr. from German by Tobi Haberstroh. ISBN 9781626364172. pap. $14.95. TRAV

Zoellner, Tom. Train: Riding the Rails That Created the Modern World—from the Trans-Siberian to the Southwest Chief. Viking. Feb. 2014. 384p. notes. index. ISBN 9780670025282. $27.95. TRAV

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