Reviewed in the LRB, volume 40 number 23, 6 December 2018

Books reviewed in volume 40 number 23 of The London Review of Books (6 December 2018).

The Accidental President

A. J. Baime

Thomas Meaney writes:

Like Stalin, Harry Truman was a product of the criminal underworld. The Kansas City of his youth was known for its card sharks and conmen. Jesse James was not long dead and ...

Chernobyl: History of a Tragedy

Serhii Plokhy

Mike Jay writes:

‘When you look at it, it looks like any other piece of land. The sun shines on it like on any other part of the earth. And it’s as though nothing had particularly changed in ...

Promise at Dawn

Romain Gary

Christopher Tayler writes:

We are in the African bush, at night, in the mid-1950s. At a campfire Father Tassin, a Jesuit palaeontologist, is questioning Saint-Denis, the French colonial ...

The Roots of Heaven

Romain Gary, translated by Jonathan Griffin, other David Bellos

Christopher Tayler writes:

We are in the African bush, at night, in the mid-1950s. At a campfire Father Tassin, a Jesuit palaeontologist, is questioning Saint-Denis, the French colonial ...

Brutus: The Noble Conspirator

Kathryn Tempest

Thomas Jones writes:

Among Shakespeare’s tragedies Julius Caesar is unusual in not being named for its hero. By any conventional measure, the play is the tragedy of Brutus, over whose corpse ...