Kronenwetter, Michael 1943–
Kronenwetter, Michael 1943–
PERSONAL: Born February 12, 1943, in West Palm Beach, FL; son of Lanore Kronenwetter (founder of a trucking company); married Catherine Patricia Patterson (a laboratory information systems supervisor) December 16, 1971; children: Catherine, Jay. Education: Attended Northwestern University, 1961, Senior Dramatic Workshop, 1962, and University of Wisconsin, 1963–68. Religion: Roman Catholic. Hobbies and other interests: Traveling, theater, going to movies, "watching the Green Bay Packers play football and my now-adult children accomplish all the things they do."
ADDRESSES: Home and office—117 Sturgeon Eddy Rd., Wausau, WI 54401.
CAREER: Freelance writer. Nonesuch Bookstore, Kingston, Ontario, Canada, owner and operater, early 1970s; Whig-Standard, Kingston, television critic, late 1970s; City Pages, Wausau, WI, columnist.
MEMBER: Amnesty International, Mystery Writers of America, Crime Writers of Canada, Murder Must Advertise, Authors Guild, Central Wisconsin Children's Theater (board member), Children's Reading Roundtable of Chicago.
AWARDS, HONORS: National Educational Film Festival Award, 1983, for filmstrip "America's Power and Prestige since Vietnam"; certificate of merit, Wisconsin Public Radio, 1986, for unproduced radio play A Death in Richland Center; Private Eye Writers of America/St. Martin's Minotaur Best First Private Eye writing competition winner, 2004.
Are You a Liberal? Are You a Conservative?, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1984.
The Threat from Within: Unethical Politics and Politicians, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1986.
Free Press vs. Fair Trial: Television and Other Media in the Courtroom, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1986.
Politics and the Press, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1987.
Journalism Ethics, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1988.
The Military Power of the President, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1988.
The War on Terrorism, J. Messner (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1989.
Managing Toxic Wastes, J. Messner (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1989.
Northern Ireland, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1990.
Drugs in America: The Users, the Suppliers, the War on Drugs, J. Messner (Englewood Cliffs, NJ), 1990.
Taking a Stand against Human Rights Abuses, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1990.
The New Eastern Europe, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1991.
Covert Action, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1991.
London, New Discovery Books (New York, NY), 1992.
United They Hate: White Supremacist Groups in America, Walker & Co. (New York, NY), 1992.
Under Eighteen: Knowing Your Rights, Enslow Publishers (Hillside, NJ, 1993.
Prejudice in America: Causes and Cures, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1993.
The Congress of the United States, Enslow Publishers (Springfield, NJ), 1996.
The Supreme Court of the United States, Enslow Publishers (Springfield, NJ), 1996.
Political Parties of the United States, Enslow Publishers (Springfield, NJ), 1996.
The FBI and Law Enforcement Agencies of the United States, Enslow Publishers (Springfield, NJ), 1997.
America in the 1960s, Lucent Books (San Diego, CA), 1998.
America's Power and Prestige since Vietnam (filmstrip), Human Relations Media, 1982.
Capitalism vs. Socialism: Economic Policies of the U.S. and the USSR, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1986.
Welfare State America: Safety Net or Social Contract?, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1993.
Capital Punishment: A Reference Handbook, ABC-CLIO (Santa Barbara, CA), 1993.
How Democratic Is the United States?, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1994.
The Peace Commandos: Nonviolent Heroes in the Struggle against War and Injustice, New Discovery Books (New York, NY), 1994.
How to Write a News Article, F. Watts (New York, NY), 1995.
Protest!, Twenty-first Century Books (New York, NY), 1996.
Encyclopedia of Modern American Social Issues, ABC-CLIO (Santa Barbara, CA), 1997.
Terrorism: A Guide to Events and Documents, Greenwood Press (Westport, CT), 2004.
First Kill (mystery novel), St. Martin's Minotaur (New York, NY), 2005.
Also author of an unproduced radio play, A Death in Richland Center. Contributor to periodicals.
SIDELIGHTS: The majority of Michael Kronenwetter's books are about politics and history, and most are geared toward young adult readers. Titles such as Political Parties of the United States and Prejudice in America: Causes and Cures provide a broad overview of their subject matter and serve as an introduction for younger readers. The first book discusses the differences between the political parties, chronicling how their disagreements have often helped to fuel the country's progress. Writing for Booklist, Ilene Cooper commented that Kronenwetter's book "shows how parties have influenced every aspect of the country's political life." In his volume on prejudice, Kronenwetter is thorough in his discussion of how people are singled out by color, race, and religion, providing primarily modern-day examples of racist behavior and circumstances. Hazel Rochman, in a review for Booklist, reflected that Kronenwetter "is candid that things are not fair, that many have to overcome extra barriers of discrimination and poverty, that individuals have to fight the despair of seeing themselves only as victims."
Kronenwetter also writes on the subjects of politics and history for adults, with a particular concentration on current events. Terrorism: A Guide to Events and Documents provides an overview of extremist groups and terrorist factions that have become most visible over the past few decades. Among other incidents, he looks at the massacre of Israeli athletes at the 1972 Olympics, the rise of the Ku Klux Klan in the twentieth century, and the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Arthur Meyers, writing for Booklist, remarked that "the writing is lively and clear."
With First Kill, Kronenwetter turned to fiction. The novel is a soft-boiled murder mystery, following private investigator Hank Berlin as he investigates the murder of his high school friend. A contributor for Publishers Weekly called the book "a solid fiction debut," while a contributor for Kirkus Reviews noted that there were "people to care about in a briskly paced debut novel."
Kronenwetter told CA: "My favorite books range from such an individually inspired nonfiction book as Let Us Now Praise Famous Men (written by James Agee with photographs by Walker Evans) to the relatively serious mystery or thriller stories written by such masterful authors as Graham Greene, James Lee Burke, and Reginald Hill. The books I like the most of my own are Taking a Stand against Human Rights Abuses and The Peace Commandos: Nonviolent Heroes in the Struggle Against War and Injustice (both of which are intended primarily for young adults); Terrorism, which is intended for adults of any age; and, my very first detective novel, First Kill, which is intended for the fans of mystery stories."
BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:
Booklist, February 1, 1994, Janice Del Negro, review of Under Eighteen: Knowing Your Rights, p. 1001; February 15, 1994, Hazel Rochman, review of Prejudice in America: Causes and Cures, p. 1069; June 1, 1996, Ilene Cooper, review of Political Parties of the United States, p. 1690; January 1, 1997, Debbie Carton, review of Protest!, p. 838; April, 1998, Mary Ellen Quinn, review of Encyclopedia of Modern American Social Issues, p. 1345; November 15, 2004, Arthur Meyers, review of Terrorism: A Guide to Events and Documents, p. 615.
Chicago Tribune, October 23, 2005, Dick Adler, review of First Kill.
January, September-October, 2005, J. Kingston Pierce, review of First Kill.
Kirkus Reviews, July 15, 2005, review of First Kill, p. 767.
Library Journal, May 1, 1998, Mary Jane Brustman, review of Encyclopedia of Modern American Social Issues, p. 94.
Publishers Weekly, July 18, 2005, review of First Kill, p. 187.
School Library Journal, October, 2004, Mary N. Oluonye, review of America in the 1960s, p. 67.
Washington Times, September 25, 2005, Lloyd Smith, review of First Kill.
Wausau Daily Herald Online, http://www.wausaudailyherald.com/ (August 31, 2005), Gary Gisselman, review of First Kill.