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Book review: Coach Wooden and Me: Our 50-Year Friendship On and Off the Court, by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

Let me start off by saying that the entirety of my basketball knowledge comes from Space Jam, so this is not a typical read for me. But I like trying new things, expanding my horizons, and so I thought: why not? And I'm glad I did, or else I wouldn't know what happens when a 7.5'-tall black basketball player and budding political activist meets a white Midwestern coach 37 years his senior in racially-charged 1967? For Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Coach John Wooden, this odd couple relationship becomes a memorable mentorship turned friendship. Set largely during his college years at UCLA, Coach Wooden and Me: Our 50-Year Friendship On and Off the Court, by Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, is a touching tribute to Kareem's friendship with "Coach.

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Book Review: Practicing New Historicism, by Catherine Gallagher and Stephen Greenblatt

Book reviewers read many things, some quite strange. Yesterday, for instance, I was forwarded a press release for the "must-read non-fiction children's book of the season" about bald eagles. Today, I read a new historicist's perspective on "The Potato in the Materialist Imagination". Fascinating stuff. In case you can't tell, that last sentence was not sarcastic. I read a literary analysis about the potato and thoroughly enjoyed it. This roughly thirty-page essay is one of six (seven, counting the introduction) in Catherine Gallagher and Stephen Greenblatt's exceptional volume Practicing New Historicism. Although I would not normally review a text of this nature, I am compelled to make an exception for this witty and virtuosic, yet accessible, tome. So much of literary criticism

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Book Review: The Deception Game, by Lawrence Martin-Bittman

I read a great book two nights ago written by a defector from the (then) Czechoslovakian intelligence service. I didn't have time enough to write about it before the sandman came calling, but mulling it over throughout the day gave me a greater perspective on its modern day applications. Specifically, how to identify disinformation and gaslighting attempts. If you aren't already following me on Goodreads, you can check out my profile here to track my progress toward reading 100 books in 2017. I post my book reviews on this blog. The Deception Game by Lawrence Martin-Bittman is the memoir of a former Czechoslovak intelligence officer who defects from his Soviet-controlled intelligence agency in the Prague. He describes in great detail the department (Department "D"

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