Alibi V.13 No.30 • July 22-28, 2004 

Speed Reader

Garden of Beasts: A Novel of Berlin 1936

Simon and Schuster

Deaver's new thriller follows an ex-mafia killer assigned by the U.S. government to assassinate one of Hitler's top thugs. According to preliminary reviews, Garden of Beasts paints a convincingly chilly portrait of a paranoic Berlin on the brink of full-on Nazi insanity.

American Taboo: A Murder in the Peace Corps


In October 1976, on the island of Tonga, Peace Corps volunteer Deborah Gardner was stabbed 22 times by an unknown assailant. Weiss' book tells a fascinating story, largely revolving around the tiny nation's sinister attempts to cover up the crime.

An Alchemy of Mind: The Marvel and Mystery of the Brain


Adopting the same strategy she used in previous literary outings, Ackerman mixes sharp science writing with illuminating accounts of her personal experiences. This time she sifts through the perplexing riddle of human consciousness. The results, according to most accounts, are dazzling.

Isaiah Berlin Letters 1928-46

Cambridge University Press

Berlin's towering intellect and wit is on full display in this first collection of correspondence with the philosopher's impressive circle of acquaintances. The book provides some revealing insights into the life of one of the 20th century's most influential thinkers.