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About the Author

Michael O'Donnell is a lawyer who lives in Evanston, Illinois. His reviews and essays appear in The Nation, the Washington Monthly, and the Christian Science Monitor, among other publications.

Reagan and Thatcher: The Difficult Relationship

Reviews & Essays

Reagan and Thatcher: The Difficult Relationship

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

At the climax of the Cold War, misgivings simmered below the surface of the Anglo-American alliance.

Nixon’s Court

Reviews & Essays

Nixon’s Court

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

A new interpretation of the former president's judicial policy.

Leningrad

Reviews & Essays

Leningrad

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

The suffering and sacrifice of a city under historic siege.

Mightier than the Sword

Reviews & Essays

Mightier than the Sword

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

Uncle Tom's Cabin changed the world.  But is it worth reading now?

Clarence Darrow: American Iconoclast

Reviews & Essays

Clarence Darrow: American Iconoclast

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

A legalgenius with a penchant for making mischief.

Marshalling Justice

Reviews & Essays

Marshalling Justice

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

Amatchless champion of civil rights emerges from the early letters of ThurgoodMarshall.

The Civil War of 1812

Reviews & Essays

The Civil War of 1812

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

A new book portrays the second American-British conflict as a war whose concerns were largely internecine.

Before Roe v. Wade

Reviews & Essays

Before Roe v. Wade

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

A journalist and a law professor collect documents that illuminate one of our era's most divisive court battles.

John Brown’s Trial

Reviews & Essays

John Brown’s Trial

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

After his failed raid on Harper's Ferry, the man some called a traitor and others a hero was brought to a final, sensational trial.
Open

Reviews & Essays

Open

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

Can an athlete whose dazzling feats and outsize persona create a memoir that escapes the gravitational pull of his fame?
No Impact Man

Reviews & Essays

No Impact Man

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

Michael O'Donnell reviews a journalist's record of his attempt to live in harmony with the earth -- from his Manhattan apartment.
Empire of Illusion

Reviews & Essays

Empire of Illusion

Reviewed by Michael O'Donnell ×

Do our culture's fractured and fevered attentions divert us from the ideal of a functioning democracy?