Thursday, October 30, 2014


There is an immediacy about getting our news from the morning papers or favorite websites, but it is an entirely different experience to read books about past current events. With more time to describe events, books give the news greater depth and analysis. The Monrovia Public Library has some of the latest works that explain the news.

Author Lawrence Wright has written one of the most critically praised books on recent history. Thirteen Days in September: Carter, Begin and Sadat at Camp David is an extraordinary day-by-day account of how a Mideast peace treaty was negotiated by President Jimmy Carter and signed by the presidents of Egypt and Israel. This dramatic chronicle also captures the personalities and character of each statesman.

Shedding light the precariousness of peace is Inside Syria: The Backstory of the Civil War by journalist Reese Erlich. Because the news about Syria is so overwhelming, this book is an excellent choice that succinctly describes the issues, the opponents and the historical background to the politics and ongoing battles.

Let’s turn to the United States for two new books on two of the most discussed issues--gay marriage and gun control. Forcing the Spring: Inside the Fight for Marriage Equality focuses on California and the strategy to reverse Proposition 8 which forbade gay marriage.  Author Jo Becker was allowed to witness the legal and PR maneuvering and her book reads like a legal thriller. 

Despite being a victim of a shooting that caused grievous injuries, Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords survived and wrote, along with her husband astronaut Mark Kelly, Enough: Our Fight to Keep America Safe From Gun Violence. Told from the perspective of two people who support the right to bear arms, this book describes their non-partisan campaign to limit the devastation that impacts so many.

No comments: