Recent Reviews

‘The Narrow Road in the Deep North,’ by Richard Flanagan

A devastating historical novel about an army doctor among the POWs forced to work on the Death Railway.

Best new science fiction and steampunk

Novels by Peter Watts, John Scalzi and Rod Duncan

‘The Liar’s Wife’ by Mary Gordon

In four novellas, Mary Gordon creates thoughtful characters in the throes of change.

Puppies taking the plunge

Seth Casteel photographs floppy, goofy puppies splashing around at play underwater.

Novel: Dan Fesperman’s ‘Unmanned’

REVIEW: A timely tale about the human consequences of the use of drones in war.

Fighting for survival, then a life

Robert Timberg recounts his long journey from a severe wound in Vietnam to an accomplished life.

We’re all digitally smupid

Michael Harris surveys how our digital lives make us know everything and know nothing.

The war that fueled American pride

In “When Britain Burned the White House,” Peter Snow recounts the War of 1812.

An encyclopedic but enthusiastic look at pop music

In “Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!” Bob Stanley attempts to tell the story of pop in all its forms in just under 600 pages.

Where do you go when you’ve lost your place in the world?

In the novel “A Brave Man Seven Storeys Tall,” losing an eye sends a man on a journey of shock and love.

The randomness of war collides with ordinary life in ‘In the Wolf’s Mouth’

“In the Wolf’s Mouth,” Adam Foulds’s novel of World War II, the extremes of battle collide with ordinary life.

David Letterman is a finalist for the Thurber Prize

New Yorker magazine writers and illustrators dominate the list of contenders for the humor-writing award.

Book World: ‘The Sorcery Club,’ by Elliott O’Donnell

A classic horror story by one of England’s most celebrated ghost-hunters is reprinted.

‘Before, During, After,’ by Richard Bausch

The attacks of Sept. 11 divide the lives of two people who thought they’d finally found love.

‘The Roommates,’ by Stephanie Wu

True tales of friendship, rivalry, romance and disturbingly close quarters

Dorothy Salisbury Davis, mystery writer, dies at 98

Mrs. Davis wrote 20 novels and dozens of stories during a career that spanned five decades.

‘Brown Girl Dreaming,’ by Jacqueline Woodson

A memoir in verse from the celebrated YA author of ‘Miracle’s Boys.’

Picture book: ‘Before We Eat: From Farm to Table’

A gently cadenced poem that pays grateful homage to all those who bring us food.

Stephen L. Carter & ‘Back Channel,’ tomorrow at Politics and Prose

Yale law professor and novelist Stephen L. Carter’s new novel

‘Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage’

Haruki Murakami’s new coming-of-age story takes us into a fractured modernity and its uneasy inhabitants.

Lisa Scottoline and Francesca Serritella

Q&A with the bestselling mother-daughter authors of “Have a Nice Guilt Trip”

‘I Can See in the Dark,’ by Karin Fossum

A sadistic caregiver is secretly torturing elderly patients in Fossum’s latest Norwegian mystery.

Review: ‘I Am Having So Much Fun Here Without You’

A literary beach read about an artist torn between continuing an affair and preserving his marriage.

Journalists run amok

Nick Davies recounts the unfolding of the hacking scandal that brought down one of Murdoch’s papers.

Lone Beatle on the loose

Tom Doyle follows Paul McCartney’s journey over the 1970s as the Beatle copes with the break-up of the band.

Get thee to the seashore, quick!

Wallace J. Nichols outlines why being near water is beneficial to one’s soul, life and even success.

Reporter who covered decolonization

In his memoir ‘Foreign Correspondent,’ H.D.S. Greenway sums up a career of war reporting.

Anatomy of a Summer House

In “The House with Sixteen Handmade Doors,” Henry Petroski dissects his vacation home.

To resuscitate or not to resuscitate?

Physician David Casarett explores the science and advisability of bringing people back from the dead.

Solitude was Beethoven’s freedom — and only peace

In “Beethoven: Anguish and Triumph,” Jan Swafford offers a sympathetic take on the composer.

Alas, farewell to Carolyn See’s wise world of words

Longtime Washington Post book reviewer Carolyn See announces her retirement.

‘The Magician’s Land,’ by Lev Grossman

The final volume of the Magicians Trilogy.

‘Agostino,’ by Alberto Moravia

A classic novella by an Italian master about the loss of childhood innocence.

‘Green Girl’ is a tale of loss and attempted recovery from it

A young American wanders through London lost between innocence and cynicism as she recovers from loss.

Sarah MacLean picks best new romance novels for August

Tales of love from Kate Noble, Lily Everett and Sophie Jordan.

‘The Spark and the Drive,’ by Wayne Harrison

A young auto mechanic follows his dream, but he’s got a lot to learn about life.

Carolyn See retires from Book World

The beloved West Coast critic has been writing for The Washington Post for more than 25 years.

‘Big Little Lies,’ by Liane Moriarty: Ugly deeds Down Under

The parents at Pirriwee Public School can be brutal — and deadly.

Washington Post Bestsellers Aug. 10

The books Washington has been reading.

Ron Charles

Ron Charles

‘The Narrow Road in the Deep North,’ by Richard Flanagan

A devastating historical novel about an army doctor among the POWs forced to work on the Death Railway.

The Style Blog

Ron Charles

David Letterman is a finalist for the Thurber Prize

New Yorker magazine writers and illustrators dominate the list of contenders for the humor-writing award.

The Style Blog

Ron Charles

Why we still need good indie bookstores

Roll over, Beethoven.

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

Book World: ‘The Sorcery Club,’ by Elliott O’Donnell

A classic horror story by one of England’s most celebrated ghost-hunters is reprinted.

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

‘Agostino,’ by Alberto Moravia

A classic novella by an Italian master about the loss of childhood innocence.

Michael Dirda

Michael Dirda

‘Nothing Is Impossible,’ by Edward D. Hoch

‘Further Problems of Dr. Sam Hawthorne,’ reviewed by Michael Dirda

Jonathan Yardley

Jonathan Yardley

The war that fueled American pride

In “When Britain Burned the White House,” Peter Snow recounts the War of 1812.

Jonathan Yardley

Jonathan Yardley

Reporter who covered decolonization

In his memoir ‘Foreign Correspondent,’ H.D.S. Greenway sums up a career of war reporting.

Jonathan Yardley

Jonathan Yardley

Tribute to American ideals

Elizabeth Mitchell takes readers through the many stages of birth of the Statue of Liberty.

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.