New Reviews

Banning in 21st-Century America, by Emily Knox, reviewed by David B. Levy. Emily Knox has written a book that focuses on book banning in contemporary America. It explores the relationship between knowledge and power. Her work will be of interest to public libraries, school libraries, and those interested in general in book banning in America in the 21st century. Knox asks good questions such as: Why do people challenge, restrict, or remove books? What are the roles of…Read more.

‘A Long Way from the Armstrong Beer Parlour': A Life in Rare Books: Essays by Richard Landon, edited by Marie Elena Korey, reviewed by William F. Meehan III. Richard Landon (1942-2011) was a rare book librarian’s librarian. In the opening essay of this erudite collection, Landon credits An Introduction to Bibliography for Literary Students by R. B. McKerrow as the singular most inspirational title influencing his career. “In lucid and compelling prose,” Landon writes about McKerrow’s seminal work, “he dissects and reconstructs the physical book...Read more

Part of Our Lives: A People’s History of the American Public Library, by Wayne A. Wiegand, reviewed by Patrick M. Valentine. When faced with a new Wayne Wiegand book, you know that it is going to be good. He has written archives-based research books about American librarians in World War I and hard-hitting biographies of librarians like Melvil Dewey. For years he wrote popular one-page historical essays for American Libraries and penned trenchant longer articles like “Tunnel Vision and...Read more.

Patience and Fortitude: Power, Real Estate, and the Fight to Save a Public Library, by Scott Sherman, reviewed by Ed Goedeken. Patience and Fortitude are the names of the two lions that guard the main entrance to the New York Public Library building on 42nd street. Since its completion in 1911, that library has represented the grandeur and promise of one of the great public libraries in the world. Beginning in 2011, Scott Sherman, an investigative report for The Nation magazine, crafted a series of articles outlining the relatively secret plan hatched by...Read more.

Why Information Grows: The Evolution of Order, from Atoms to Economies,by César Hidalgo, reviewed by Marc Kosciejew.In Why Information Grows: The Evolution of Order, from Atoms to Economies, César Hidalgo presents a compelling argument for an information-centric view of life, society, and the economy. His ambitious aim is to establish a universal theory of information that can be applied to all things, from the artificial and inanimate to the natural and organic, and to all levels and scales, from atoms to economies. Life, according to Hidalgo...Read more.