Biography

Frequency Hopping
December 19, 2011

Hedy’s Folly avoids the pitfalls of other books about Lamarr, starting with the star’s own memoir, Ecstasy and Me. These volumes ultimately fail to ca

The Voyage In
November 30, 2011

Alexandra Harris says that “much of Virginia Woolf’s writing life was devoted to … exposing the falsity involved in defining anyone as ‘this’ or ‘that

The Call to Order
November 16, 2011

One closes this book feeling more than a little mentally repelled. Nobody who spends a goodly part of their leisure-time walking the English landscape

The Unexamined Socrates
November 10, 2011

Paul Johnson’s Socrates aims to remove the mystery. Johnson writes in a robust, bluff tone. As he summarizes Socrates’s life and thought, he doesn’t m

Irresistible
November 06, 2011

To read a full life of Steve McQueen is a strain on interest, but two minutes of Bullitt and you recall his coiled, lethal impact. He was beautiful on

The Hater
November 03, 2011

Reinhard Heydrich might well have been the cruelest among the many cruel National Socialist leaders. Even though Heydrich has entered history as one o

The Inventor of Our Politics
October 26, 2011

Richard Brookhiser saves his central argument for his final pages, and it might have been wiser to bring it out more explicitly much earlier. Madison

The Star that Barked
October 03, 2011

Susan Orlean has done a fine job with this book, and it is to be numbered among the best Hollywood biographies. She seizes the bone at the end of her

The Wendy Chronicles
September 20, 2011

Wendy Wasserstein may not belong in the ranks of the greatest American Jewish writers, but like Neil Simon before her, she helped to popularize the Je

All Hat and No Cattle
September 12, 2011

There are (considering his enduring popularity with modern historians) surprisingly few biographies of Alcibiades. So how does P.J. Rhodes deal with h

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