Cultish by Amanda Montell

Amanda Montell’s Cultish: The Language of Fanaticism (Harper Wave 2021)is a deep-dive into the linguistics surrounding cults and other groups. Montell’s study covers various groups whose affiliations are based on adherence to a set of core values that are reinforced through the use of language. A compelling new book, Montell’s well-researched and humorous text tries …

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Details are Unprintable by Allan Levine

One could not possibly ask for a more thorough, suspenseful, and fascinating true crime story than Allan Levine’s Details are Unprintable: Wayne Lonergan and the Sensational Café Society Murder (Lyons Press 2020). A consummate historian and writer, Levine provides a compelling account of one of the most brutal transnational murder cases of the mid-twentieth century. …

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The Irish Assassins by Julie Kavanagh

Inspired by the discovery of notebooks belonging to her late father, in The Irish Assassins: Conspiracy, Revenge, and the Phoenix Park Murders That Stunned Victorian England (Grove Press, 2021), Julie Kavanagh digs deeper into the historical record to fully reveal the brutal slaying of Lord Frederick Cavendish and Thomas Burke in Dublin’s Phoenix Park by …

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What Happened to Paula by Katherine Dykstra

Katherine Dykstra’s What Happened to Paula: On the Death of an American Girl (Norton 2021) is a thoroughly researched and deeply personal account of a woman’s investigation into the death of a midwestern American teenager. It also discusses the through lines that Paula’s victimization has with women’s lives across time, including the author’s own. Late …

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