About CSR Book Reviews

Every fall and spring, our crew of doctors and scientists review the season’s most intriguing popular science offerings.

Latest Book Reviews

Can Learning A Language Make You A Better Person?

Kevin Gonzales learns about the fascinating ways language-learning can change your brain in Albert Costa's new book

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The Sperm Whale Social Club And Other Amazing Tales of Animal Culture

While enjoying Carl Safina's latest, Sofia Landi is forced to ask: "are animals more cultured than we are?"

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An Antidote To Misinformation From 1920’s New York

In Deborah Blum's best-selling tale of toxicology in 1920s New York, Karl Palmquist uncovers a dogged struggle to combat misinformation still relevant today

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The Cold Hard Truth About The Cosmos

Ben Deen enjoys an engaging if depressing preview of humanity's future in Brian Greene's latest book

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The Extraordinary Dramas and Dilemmas of Transplant Surgery

Transplant surgeon Joshua Mezrich's book is at once autobiography and history of one of the most extraordinary fields in modern medicine. In it, Paige Winokur also discovers a new perspective on the racial justice movement.

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The Pandemic Dress Rehearsal Where Everything Went Wrong

Geena Ianni learns that we've been through a trial-run for pandemic preparedness, and are making the same mistakes all over again

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What It Means To Live With Dementia

Stephen Serene finds beauty and insight in Lynn Casteel Harper's portrait of dementia, but worries that it whitewashes the realities of nursing home life

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The Ghost of Pandemics Past

Jared Diamond's classic explains how epidemics of the past transformed societies. Agata Bochynska wonders: how will the current pandemic change ours?

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A Kassandra For Our Time

Ali Cohen finds Madeline Drexler's twenty-year-old profile of new viruses and public health challenges starkly relevant today

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When Fiction Helps Us See

Life imitates art when Megan Elder immerses herself in Saramago's famous pandemic novel

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Full Review Archive

The Art of Logic in an Illogical World Book by Eugenia Cheng | Review by Jay Wadekar Bad Blood Book by John Carreyrou | Review by Cicely Shillingford Becoming Wild Book by Carl Safina | Review by Sofia Landi The Bilingual Brain Book by Albert Costa (trans. John W. Schwieter) | Review by Kevin Gonzales Blindness Book by Jose Saramago (trans. Giovanni Pontiero) | Review by Megan Elder The Body Book by Bill Bryson | Review by Rewatee Gokhale The Book That Changed America Book by Randall Fuller | Review by Angelika Manhart Borrowed Time Book by Sue Armstrong | Review by Vanessa Kellner The Brain from Inside Out Book by György Buzsáki | Review by Rachel Denison Building and Dwelling Book by Richard Sennett | Review by Susan Sheng Buzz Sting Bite Book by Anne Sverdrup-Thygeson | Review by Huayi Wei Coders Book by Clive Thompson | Review by Benjamin King The Consciousness Instinct Book by Michael S. Gazzaniga | Review by Farah Abdul-Rahman A Crack in Creation Book by Jennifer A. Doudna and Samuel H. Sternberg | Review by Rhea Datta A Different Kind Of Animal Book by Robert Boyd | Review by Marcela Coronado Doing Harm Book by Maya Dusenbery | Review by Karen Kwon Emerging Epidemics Book by Madeline Drexler | Review by Ali Cohen Enlightenment Now Book by Steven Pinker | Review by Sophia Domokos The Evolution of Beauty Book by Richard O. Prum | Review by Alessio Travaglia Exoplanets Book by Michael Summers and James Trefil | Review by Criseyda Martinez The Fears of the Rich, The Needs of the Poor Book by William H. Foege | Review by Alice Fok The Formula Book by Albert-László Barabási | Review by György Buzsáki The Future of Humanity Book by Michio Kaku | Review by Milica Bulajić The Gene Machine Book by Bonnie Rochman | Review by Evelyn Litwinoff Gods of the Upper Air Book by Charles King | Review by Angelika Manhart Goldilocks and the Water Bears Book by Louisa Preston | Review by Jorge Jaramillo Guns, Germs, and Steel Book by Jared Diamond | Review by Agata Bochynska Hello World Book by Hannah Fry | Review by Kate Storey-Fisher How Emotions are Made Book by Lisa Feldman Barrett | Review by Aaron Katzman I Contain Multitudes Book by Ed Yong | Review by Maria Pokrovskii The Influential Mind Book by Tali Sharot | Review by Kaitlyn R. Scacalossi In Search of the Canary Tree Book by Lauren E. Oakes | Review by Mariyah Saiduddin Into the Grey Zone Book by Adrian Owen | Review by Julia Derk A Journal of the Plague Year Book by Daniel Defoe, ed. Cynthia Wall | Review by Benjamin McKenna Kin Book by John L. Ingraham | Review by Margret Veltman The Last Man Book by Mary Shelley | Review by Nicole Perez Life 3.0 Book by Max Tegmark | Review by Dervla Kelly Life In Code Book by Ellen Ullman | Review by Francisca Gil The Little Book of Black Holes Book by Steven S. Gubser and Frans Pretorius | Review by Enrico Fonda Lost In Math Book by Sabine Hossenfelder | Review by Mark Wyman Microbia Book by Eugenia Bone | Review by Alexandra Grote The Mind-Body Problem Book by Jonathan Westphal | Review by Cato Sandford Misbehaving Book by Richard H. Thaler | Review by Oliver Vikbladh Modern Death Book by Haider Warraich, M.D. | Review by Anastasia-Maria T. Zavitsanou The Neuroscientist Who Lost Her Mind Book by Barbara K. Lipska and Elaine McArdle | Review by Qiuling Li Never Home Alone Book by Rob Dunn | Review by Tanvi Butola The New Science of Consciousness Book by Paul L. Nunez | Review by Sophia Domokos On Vanishing Book by Lynn Casteel Harper | Review by Stephen Serene Other Minds Book by Peter Godfrey-Smith | Review by Rachel Denison The Plant Messiah Book by Carlos Magdalena | Review by Marie Crouzevialle The Poisoner’s Handbook Book by Deborah Blum | Review by Karl Palmquist Proof! Book by Amir Alexander | Review by Jingyang Zhou Pure Politics and Impure Science Book by Arthur M. Silverstein | Review by Geena Ianni Reductionism in Art and Brain Science Book by Eric R. Kandel | Review by Marie Sweet The River of Consciousness Book by Oliver Sacks | Review by Rhea Datta The Runaway Species Book by Anthony Brandt and David Eagleman | Review by Dan Robitzski Science and the City Book by Laurie Winkless | Review by Diego Reinero The Seabird's Cry Book by Adam Nicolson | Review by Li Wang Seeds of Science Book by Mark Lynas | Review by Nicholas DelRose Spineless Book by Juli Berwald | Review by Emily North Suggestible You Book by Erik Vance | Review by Diane S. Lye Supernavigators Book by David Barrie | Review by Tim Currier The Tangled Tree Book by David Quammen | Review by Beth Walters Testosterone Book by Rebecca M. Jordan-Young and Katrina Karkazis | Review by Mary Rossillo Turning Points Book by Kostas Kampourakis | Review by Stephanie Lauer The Uninhabitable Earth Book by David Wallace-Wells | Review by Benjamin Pope Until the End of Time Book by Brian Greene | Review by Ben Deen Untrue Book by Wednesday Martin | Review by Elizabeth Harris When Death Becomes Life Book by Joshua D. Mezrich | Review by Paige Winokur The Wizard And The Prophet Book by Charles C. Mann | Review by Nicholas DelRose The Workshop and the World Book by Robert P. Crease | Review by John Dodson