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Baum on Books

  • The handsome new oversized book A Year in the Vineyard by Sophie Menin and Bob Chaplin, takes readers on an international romp to explore the life cycle of grapes, vines and wines. Book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • A high-end investment firm in Connecticut is the backdrop for a new murder mystery novel. And its author may surprise you. WSHU's book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • The Mark Twain classic, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn gets a fresh retelling in Percival Everett’s new work: James: A Novel. This time we see the story through the eyes of Jim/James, a man who escapes slavery to keep his family together. Everett shares a deeply complex James who code-switches to survive. Here' WSHU’s Culture Critic Joan Baum's review.
  • What is the creative process? How does art get made? These are some of the questions a new book by former New York magazine editor Adam Moss strives to answer. Our book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • Essayist Arthur Krystal shares his reflections on aging, cultural appropriation, and oversharing on social media in his latest publication. Book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • Yale University Press has published a catalog highlighting rarely-seen drawings and prints by the pre-eminent Renaissance Italian painter, Botticelli. Book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • In her latest novel, The Vixen Amber Holloway, New York author Carol LaHines crafts a tense psychological tale where a Dante scholar descends into her own personal hell. Our book critic, Joan Baum, had this review.
  • A group of ultra-right extremists in New York City organized to overthrow the U.S. government. And they nearly succeed. It was just one plot in a broad effort to replace Democracy with Fascism in the 1940’s. Our book critic Joan Baum read all about it in journalist Rachel Maddow’s latest work, Prequel.
  • Joanne Leedom-Ackerman used to teach writing at NYU and CCNY. Now she is a Vice President of PEN International and the author of a new political thriller. Book critic Joan Baum has this review.
  • Up on the roof of a New York City apartment building, tenants gather to tell tales and escape their isolation during the COVID-19 pandemic shutdown. That’s the setting of a new collection of stories. Book critic Joan Baum has this review.