Recent Reviews

New collection of Shirley Jackson writings is best left to devoted fans

Occasionally charming, “Let Me Tell You” should not be anyone’s introduction to the writer.

‘The Little Paris Bookshop,’ by Nina George, exudes all things French

A forlorn bookseller floats down the Seine in search of lost love.

‘No. 4 Imperial Lane’: A powerful elegy for lost love and lost empire

Jonathan Weisman’s elegant first novel explores the ways people are caught in the tides of history.

Jen Lancaster’s ‘The Best of Enemies’ is a cheeky take on girl friends

In this witty novel, it takes a crisis to bring together a perfectionist SAHM and a hard-bitten war correspondent.

‘Street Poison’ review: Why rappers owe a debt to writer Iceberg Slim

His memoir, “Pimp,” has sold millions and influenced numerous writers, filmmakers and rappers.

Uncle Sam wants YOU to read ‘popular’ scholarly books

The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded grants to 36 scholars to encourage books for a general audience.

Author of ‘The Paris Wife’ reimagines the world of aviator Beryl Markham

Paula McLain offers a portrait of the iconoclastic pilot and her times.

William Vollmann’s ‘The Dying Grass’ is the reading experience of a lifetime

The story is a brilliant and masterful retelling of the Nez Perce War of 1877 that is worth every page.

What it’s like to fight a nuclear war every day of your life

In “Nagasaki,” Susan Southard describes what happened to A-bomb survivors of a targeted Japanese city.

Watergate reporter: Nixon is still tricky after all these years

The co-author of “All the President’s Men” says two new books are not quite the great narrative biographies Richard Nixon deserves.

What really happened the night Dylan plugged in his guitar?

Elijah Wald’s “Dylan Goes Electric!” explores the 1965 Newport Folk Festival and its aftermath.

Healing tiny, super fast-flying creatures

Terry Masear describes her grueling and emotional efforts rehabilitating rescued hummingbirds.

The torment and small gains of Burmese dissident groups

Delphine Schrank chronicles a dissident’s difficult life on Burma’s twisted road toward democracy.

No, that’s not a Jackson Pollock at a great price — it’s a FAKE

Anthony M. Amore details how art collectors get duped and how frauds are uncovered.

Food and the decline of good eating

In ‘The Dorito Effect,’ Mark Schatzker explains how industrial food is destroying flavor

Civil rights and outer space

‘We Could Not Fail’ looks at the African Americans who helped win the Space Race

How to show off your pricey new edition of Frank Herbert’s ‘Dune’

The Folio Society has launched a competition on social media -- #OwnTheSpice

‘The Tale of Genji’: The work of a brilliant widow 1,000 years ago

A masterpiece of fiction by Murasaki Shikibu in a new translation by Dennis Washburn.

‘The Life and Death of Sophie Stark:’ A portrait of a woman’s sacrifices for art

Anna North’s novel tells the story of an iconoclastic filmmaker.

The National Book Festival wants YOU

The Library of Congress is looking for volunteers to help make the festival on Sept. 5 a success.

‘Steel’ review: Honoring the industry that once symbolized our strength

Brooke C. Stoddard’s book traces the rise and fall of iron and steel manufacturing through the centuries.

Astronomical sales for ‘Go Set a Watchman’ in D.C.

In its first week, Harper Lee’s novel sold more copies in D.C. than all the other books on the bestseller lists combined.

Here’s what E.L. Doctorow said at the National Book Festival last year

“I start writing to find out why I’ve had that feeling.“

A new ‘Dr. Who’ and other best sci-fi and fantasy for July

“Dr. Who: The Drosten’s Curse,” “Aurora” and “The Watchmaker of Filigree Street.”

In ‘Girl in Glass,’ mom of ‘distressed baby’ takes on Huffington, the system

Deanna Fei’s memoir is the moving personal tale of the premature child who sparked a debate.

‘Crooked’ review: Nixon narrates his story in this comic alt-history

Austin Grossman’s zany novel draws us into the operatic tragedy of Tricky Dick’s violently oscillating career.

‘Speaking in Bones’ review: A forensics expert on the trail of a missing teen

Kathy Reichs has created one of the most interesting female protagonists in American crime fiction.

Want your Apple photos faster? Just tell Tim Cook.

Corporate twitter accounts are sometimes a lot more responsive than you might believe.

Brush with the Bard is backdrop for story of powerful early modern woman

Lady Elizabeth Russell organized a neighborhood petition to stop Shakespeare’s acting company.

The Harper Lee I knew

The writer once lived next door to the author of “To Kill a Mockingbird” — and now she’s worried about her.

Beware the purple fields in Lori Roy’s eerie ‘Let Me Die in His Footsteps’

A thriller by the Edgar Award-winner is steeped in Southern Gothic.

Ted Cruz drops off D.C. bestseller list

The New York Times finally allows Cruz on its list, even as the senator’s book falls off The Post’s list.

‘The Next Next Level’ by Leon Neyfakh: a tale of rap and friendship

This study of the goofy white rapper Juiceboxxx is also a thoughtful story about idealism and ambition.

Beautiful creatures endangered by ugly humans

Carl Safina explores the lives and dangers of the world’s many extraordinary animals.

What ballplayers and their families endure from season to season

Barry Svrluga offers an inside look at how baseball families and their organizations cope year to year.

The nitty gritty of crime

In ‘Forensics,’ Val McDermid writes in praise of the scientists who have informed her crime novels.

A son’s tale of his father, the first American tried in Iran after revolution

Cyrus M. Copeland describes his father’s ordeal at the time of the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1979.

A political blood feud

In ‘Vendetta,’ James Neff chronicles the long-running conflcit between Bobby Kennedy and Jimmy Hoffa.

Book review: ‘Ziegfeld and His Follies’

It’s the first detailed biography in 40 years of the legendary producer who regularly bedded his stars.

Mario Vargas Llosa’s delicious melodrama of sex, love and revenge

“The Discreet Hero,” by Peru’s Nobel laureate in literature, delivers a bawdy tragicomedy.

Washington Post Bestsellers July 26, 2015

The books Washington has been reading.

Ron Charles

Ron Charles

‘No. 4 Imperial Lane’: A powerful elegy for lost love and lost empire

Jonathan Weisman’s elegant first novel explores the ways people are caught in the tides of history.

The Style Blog

Ron Charles

Uncle Sam wants YOU to read ‘popular’ scholarly books

The National Endowment for the Humanities awarded grants to 36 scholars to encourage books for a general audience.

The Style Blog

Ron Charles

How to show off your pricey new edition of Frank Herbert’s ‘Dune’

The Folio Society has launched a competition on social media -- #OwnTheSpice

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

New collection of Shirley Jackson writings is best left to devoted fans

Occasionally charming, “Let Me Tell You” should not be anyone’s introduction to the writer.

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

‘The Decagon House Murders’ evokes Agatha Christie — in Japan

Yukito Ayatsuji’s mystery is a classic of misdirection.

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

The literary history of duels, those absurdly formal fights to the death

They started with a slap and ended with a fatal blow, and they played an important role in many works.

Carlos Lozada

Carlos Lozada

What it’s like to fight a nuclear war every day of your life

In “Nagasaki,” Susan Southard describes what happened to A-bomb survivors of a targeted Japanese city.

Book Party

Carlos Lozada

How to survive a nuclear bomb every day of your life

In her book “Nagasaki,” Susan Southard describes the life-long struggle for survivors of the 1945 bombing.

Carlos Lozada

Carlos Lozada

The radical chic of Ta-Nehisi Coates

The critic of white America is embraced by white readers and pundits. What does that mean?

Literary Calendar

Going Out Guide: Upcoming events

Going Out Guide: Upcoming events

Get the latest on readings, signings and author appearances in the D.C. area.