Book Reviewer

Mal Warwick

I began writing this blog in January 2010. I’m a member of the National Book Critics Circle and the Northern California Book Reviewers and for five years ending in December 2020 I chaired the board of directors of the Bay Area Book Festival. Those of my reviews that involve Berkeley authors or stories set in Berkeley appear in the award-winning local news site, Berkeleyside. I’m also a member of the Author’s Guild and have been a member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFFWA) since the mid-1970s.

My most recent book is Hell on Earth: What We Can Learn from Dystopian Fiction (July 2017). For information about Hell on Earth, go to My newest book is about dystopian novels. I’m the author, co-author, or editor of 20 other books, including The Business Solution to Poverty: Designing Products and Services for Three Billion New Customers and the best-selling fundraising text, How to Write Successful Fundraising Appeals, Third Edition. For a list of all my books that are still in print, go to Books by Mal Warwick.

Mal Warwick
What follows is the biography published by Marquis Who’s Who.

BERKELEY, CA, June 11, 2019, Marquis Who’s Who, the world’s premier publisher of biographical profiles, is proud to present Mal Warwick with the Albert Nelson Marquis Lifetime Achievement Award. As in all Marquis Who’s Who biographical volumes, Mr. Warwick was selected on the basis of current reference value. Factors such as his position, noteworthy accomplishments, visibility, and prominence in his field were all taken into account during the selection process.

Mr. Warwick is an author, entrepreneur, and activist who has made his mark in business, the nonprofit sector, his local community, and the world of books and literature.

Business career

Mr. Warwick’s business career began in 1979 with the founding of the firm now known as Mal Warwick Donordigital. The company, celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, is an employee-owned fundraising and marketing agency serving the national nonprofit community. From its offices in Berkeley, CA, and Washington, DC, the firm’s 51 employees offer a wide range of services in direct mail fundraising, online fundraising and marketing, and legacy giving. Mal Warwick Donordigital is a Founding B Corporation. Although now a minor shareholder, Mr. Warwick continues to chair the company’s board.

In recognition of his leadership in the direct marketing industry, Mr. Warwick has received awards from the Association of Fundraising Professionals and the Direct Marketing Association.

In 2010, after leaving day-to-day work with Mal Warwick Donordigital, Mr. Warwick helped establish the One World Play Project, a B Corporation that manufactures and distributes a virtually indestructible soccer ball that never goes flat. With sponsorship by General Motors and other major companies, the Project has donated more than 2,000,000 balls to needy children and youth in over 185 countries.

Socially responsible business

A serial entrepreneur, Mr. Warwick was active in promoting social and environmental responsibility in the business community nationwide for more than two decades. In 1990, he joined Social Venture Network, and in subsequent years he helped launch Business for Social Responsibility, BALLE (Business Alliance for Local Living Economies), and the Center for Responsible Business at the Haas School of Business of the University of California, Berkeley. He served as vice-chair and chair of the board of directors of Social Venture Network from 2001-2007.

Mr. Warwick is the co-author of Values-Driven Business: How to Change the World, Make Money, and Have Fun with Ben Cohen, co-founder of Ben & Jerry’s. He also served as editor of the other six books in the Social Venture Network Series published in San Francisco by Berrett-Koehler. More recently, he coauthored The Business Solution to Poverty: Designing Products and Services for Three Billion New Customers with anti-poverty crusader Paul Polak. The book won a 2014 Axiom Business Book Award.

The nonprofit sector

For 30 years, Mr. Warwick focused on the nonprofit sector as an author, consultant, and public speaker on marketing and fundraising for nonprofit organizations. He is the author of 15 books in the field, most notably the best-selling fundraising text, How to Write Successful Fundraising Appeals (now in its third edition). For nearly 20 years, he also published a print and online newsletter on successful fundraising techniques for more than 10,000 subscribers.

Among the hundreds of nonprofits Mr. Warwick and his colleagues served over the years are many of the nation’s largest and most distinguished charities as well as six Democratic Presidential candidates. Collectively, they have been responsible for raising more than one billion dollars—largely in the form of small gifts from individuals.

For many years, Mr. Warwick was a frequent speaker at events sponsored by the Association of Fundraising Professionals throughout North America. Then, beginning in 2000, he became involved in the nonprofit sector worldwide. Speaking as a volunteer at conferences on six continents, he taught fundraising theory and practice to nonprofit executives from more than 100 countries.

Volunteer activities

Mr. Warwick’s volunteer service began as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ecuador (1965-69). Over the years since then, Mr. Warwick has served on the boards of directors of numerous nonprofit organizations, and in many of them as chair. In addition to Social Venture Network, these organizations have included READ Global (San Francisco, CA), GreatNonprofits (Redwood City, CA), and the Fistula Foundation (San Jose, CA). Presently, Mr. Warwick is leading the Combined Peace Corps Community Campaign for the National Peace Corps Association (Washington, DC).

Since 1969 Mr. Warwick has lived in Berkeley, CA, where he has been deeply involved in local community affairs. In 1992, he co-founded the Berkeley Community Fund “to narrow inequities within Berkeley.” He served on the Fund’s board for 14 years, including one year as board chair. Also, for more than a decade, he was vice-chair of the board of the Berkeley Symphony. In 2006, he was awarded the Benjamin Ide Wheeler Medal by the Berkeley Community Fund as “Berkeley’s most useful citizen” in recognition of his lifetime contributions to the community.

The world of books and literature

Currently, Mr. Warwick chairs the board of the Bay Area Book Festival (Berkeley, CA), an annual event that attracts 25,000 book-lovers to interact for two days with more than 250 authors and 200 exhibitors.

Since 2010, Mr. Warwick has gained a following as a book reviewer. His blog, Mal Warwick on Books, contains reviews of more than 1,900 titles, including popular fiction, nonfiction, mysteries and thrillers and commentaries. He is a member of the National Book Critics Circle.

In 2017, Mr. Warwick’s book, Hell on Earth: What We Can Learn from Dystopian Fiction was published. He has been an associate member of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America since 1974.

Mr. Warwick holds a B.A. in History from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor (1963) and studied International Affairs at Columbia University (1963-65).

A list of the books Mal has written, co-authored, or edited can be found at Books by Mal. For a representative sample of Mal’s articles, go to his articles pages, Business and Other Topics and Fundraising and Nonprofits.


Published Books

Articles Written

Books Reviewed