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by Peter Moskos

April 6, 2008

Good Press in the Atlantic Monthly

I was on the subway today, reading the Atlantic Monthly (or is it just The Atlantic?... no matter, it's my favorite magazine.... with the New Yorker placing a close second and the Economist to show). I see a book review for Judith Herrin's Byzantium: The Surprising Life of a Medieval Empire. I like Professor Herrin. I took a class from her in Byzantine History. She was great.

As the subway picks up speed going under the East River from Queens into Manhattan, I turn to my wife and say, "Hey look, I took her class at Princeton. She was great. Why isn't my book in here?! And as my finger goes down the page, I see MY book:

Here's the review. It's short, but it's good. I wonder how many times a professor and her student have had books reviewed on the same page? From the Atlantic's May, 2008 issue.
Cop in the Hood (Princeton)
Those prone to facile comparisons will liken this riveting book to The Wire, the acclaimed and popular cable-television series that inhabits the same mean streets. Those who take a longer view, however, will see this for what it is: an unsparing boys-in-blue procedural that succeeds on its own plentiful—and wonderfully sympathetic—merits. Moskos, now an assistant professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, deftly intermingles cops-and-robbers verisimilitude and progressive social science, yet keeps his reportage clear-eyed, his conclusions pathos-free. What results is a thoughtful, measured critique—of the failed drug war, its discontents, and the self-defeating criminal-justice system looming just behind.

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