No pretension or flab here. Just sturdy verbs, a casual flowing power, tantric masculine reticence, a melancholy sense of a sidewise-drifting life…The star is the surfing, and the waves, which the author studies all over the world, from a hundred different angles…one takes away from Barbarian Days a sense of a big, wind-chapped, well-lived life. Mr. Finnegan has moved about the earth like a man in a ballad, testing himself at every opportunity, always willing to obey "dog-whistle orders from the collective surf unconscious."
"Simply extraordinary. Ms. Hepola's electric prose marks her as a flamingo among this genre's geese. She has direct access to the midnight gods of torch songs, neon signs, tap beer at a reasonable price, cigarettes and untrammeled longing. . . . As a form, addiction memoirs are permanently interesting because they're an excuse to crack open a life. Ms. Hepola's book moves to a top shelf in this arena. . . . It's a win-win. She got a better life. We have this book."
… For hundreds of years, dolphins have been bestowed mythological and cultural significance, been the object of both good and bad scientific study, and been written about countless times. Why? The author gives the reason up front: they are playful, social, and intelligent. They are like us—some of us, anyway, and as Casey learns, only some dolphins as well. …That sublime wildness is exactly what Casey, ever the adventurer, reveals in this flawed but still entertaining book.
Speaking in Bones (Temperance Brennan Series #18) by Kathy Reichs
“Temperance’s forensic sleuthing uncovers many secrets, along with a blockbuster psychological surprise.”