Nakate is conscious of the power her voice wields, and the world would benefit from listening.

A BIGGER PICTURE

MY FIGHT TO BRING A NEW AFRICAN VOICE TO THE CLIMATE CRISIS

Debut memoir from a young Ugandan climate activist who was infamously cropped out of a 2020 photo taken at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

“I was the only one who wasn’t from Europe and the only one who was black,” writes Nakate. “They hadn’t just cropped me out, I realized. They’d cropped out a whole continent.” In 2018, after witnessing devastating floods in Uganda and other nations in East Africa, Nakate diverged from her path studying business and finance in college. Reckoning with the severe lack of formal education about the climate crisis, she conducted extensive research and connected with other young activists who shared her passion. Though initially unsure and hesitant when she took to the streets of Kampala with her placards to strike, Nakate harnessed her inner courage and genuine concern for the planet to make her voice heard, and readers will eagerly follow the ups and downs of her journey. From her early local strikes with family and friends to international travel to the Youth Climate Summit in New York City in September 2019 and the U.N. Conference of the Parties in Madrid two months later, Nakate is frank about the disappointments she experienced as she battled the media’s tendency to ignore voices like hers. The text is riddled with eye-popping statistics to illustrate the gravity of the climate change situation, but it is the author’s personal stories that make the book particularly memorable. Nakate is in a vital position as a Black, Ugandan woman. Through her lens and interviews with other activists, we see how climate disasters disproportionately impact women in the Global South. Along with recounting her experiences, the author provides lots of information that may be unfamiliar to readers: Facts about the destruction of the Congo rainforest and the drying out of the Lake Chad Basin will force readers to pay attention—and hopefully, to act in whatever way they are able.

Nakate is conscious of the power her voice wields, and the world would benefit from listening.

Pub Date: Nov. 2, 2021

ISBN: 978-0-358-65450-6

Page Count: 240

Publisher: Mariner Books

Review Posted Online: Sept. 15, 2021

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2021

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The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the...

NIGHT

Elie Wiesel spent his early years in a small Transylvanian town as one of four children. 

He was the only one of the family to survive what Francois Maurois, in his introduction, calls the "human holocaust" of the persecution of the Jews, which began with the restrictions, the singularization of the yellow star, the enclosure within the ghetto, and went on to the mass deportations to the ovens of Auschwitz and Buchenwald. There are unforgettable and horrifying scenes here in this spare and sombre memoir of this experience of the hanging of a child, of his first farewell with his father who leaves him an inheritance of a knife and a spoon, and of his last goodbye at Buchenwald his father's corpse is already cold let alone the long months of survival under unconscionable conditions. 

The author's youthfulness helps to assure the inevitable comparison with the Anne Frank diary although over and above the sphere of suffering shared, and in this case extended to the death march itself, there is no spiritual or emotional legacy here to offset any reader reluctance.

Pub Date: Jan. 16, 2006

ISBN: 0374500010

Page Count: 120

Publisher: Hill & Wang

Review Posted Online: Oct. 7, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 15, 2006

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A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

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GREENLIGHTS

All right, all right, all right: The affable, laconic actor delivers a combination of memoir and self-help book.

“This is an approach book,” writes McConaughey, adding that it contains “philosophies that can be objectively understood, and if you choose, subjectively adopted, by either changing your reality, or changing how you see it. This is a playbook, based on adventures in my life.” Some of those philosophies come in the form of apothegms: “When you can design your own weather, blow in the breeze”; “Simplify, focus, conserve to liberate.” Others come in the form of sometimes rambling stories that never take the shortest route from point A to point B, as when he recounts a dream-spurred, challenging visit to the Malian musician Ali Farka Touré, who offered a significant lesson in how disagreement can be expressed politely and without rancor. Fans of McConaughey will enjoy his memories—which line up squarely with other accounts in Melissa Maerz’s recent oral history, Alright, Alright, Alright—of his debut in Richard Linklater’s Dazed and Confused, to which he contributed not just that signature phrase, but also a kind of too-cool-for-school hipness that dissolves a bit upon realizing that he’s an older guy on the prowl for teenage girls. McConaughey’s prep to settle into the role of Wooderson involved inhabiting the mind of a dude who digs cars, rock ’n’ roll, and “chicks,” and he ran with it, reminding readers that the film originally had only three scripted scenes for his character. The lesson: “Do one thing well, then another. Once, then once more.” It’s clear that the author is a thoughtful man, even an intellectual of sorts, though without the earnestness of Ethan Hawke or James Franco. Though some of the sentiments are greeting card–ish, this book is entertaining and full of good lessons.

A conversational, pleasurable look into McConaughey’s life and thought.

Pub Date: Oct. 20, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-593-13913-4

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Crown

Review Posted Online: Oct. 27, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Dec. 1, 2020

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