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California Bookwatch

Volume 3, Number 4 April 2008 Home | CALBW Index

Table of Contents

Donovan's Picks Parenting Shelf Self-Help Shelf
Art Shelf Computer Shelf Christian Studies Shelf
Education Shelf Social Issues Shelf Political Science Shelf
Military Shelf Health/Medicine Shelf Real Estate Shelf
Cookbook Shelf Business Shelf Environmental Studies Shelf
Travel Shelf Photography Shelf Needlecraft Shelf
Antiques/Collectibles Shelf Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf Audiobook Shelf
California Shelf Fantasy/SciFi Shelf Mystery/Suspense Shelf
Library DVD Shelf Women's Studies Shelf  

Donovan's Picks

Will the Real Vampire People Please Leave the Lobby?
Allyson Beatrice
Sourcebooks Inc.
1935 Brookdale Road, Suite 139, Naperville, IL 60563
1402208456, $14.95

Whether it's dealing with celebrity image or political figures or understanding the politics and privacy of the Internet and a website, WILL THE VAMPIRE PEOPLE PLEASE LEAVE THE LOBBY? TRUE ADVENTURES IN CULT FANDOM is raucous, raunchy, funny and pointed: an observation of cultural laws, oddities and changing 'norms' which pokes fun at just about all aspects of Western culture, especially as it meets the machine world. A hilarious, fun read recommended for all libraries, from general-interest lending libraries seeking sharp contemporary humor to college-level collections strong in sociology or social observation.

The Parenting Shelf

Body Drama
Nancy Amanda Redd
Gotham Books
c/o Penguin Publishing Group
375 Hudson Street, New York NY 10014
9781592403264, $20.00

Modern teens need body role models to understand changes, and BODY DRAMA: REAL GIRLS, REAL BODIES, REAL ISSUES, REAL ANSWERS provides these visual models to teen girls, discussing everything from skin and body shape to hair and nails and maturing. The candid 'no holds barred' approach includes discussions of body slang, odor, maintenance, exercise and more and the lively tone combined with candid color photos and discussions makes this a pick for any mature teen's collection, and for any public library where candid coming-of-age physiology insights are desired.

The Self-Help Shelf

Helping Me Help Myself
Beth Lisick
William Morrow
10 East 53rd Street, New York NY 10022
9780061143960, $24.95

The author held a lifelong phobia of commercialism as well as ads claiming to provide self-empowerment, so therapy or personal healers were not her choice when she woke up one year realizing she was tired of her life. Instead she confronted her fears, studied success and failure trends, and developed concrete self-help routines that worked: revealed here in HELPING ME HELP MYSELF, a manual for those who would do for themselves over seeking help from others.

The Art Shelf

Art of the Creche
James L. Govan
Merrell Publishers Limited
740 Broadway, Suite 1202, New York, NY 10003
1858944023, $34.95

One of the finest Christmas customs is the presentation of the story of Christ's birth in a creche, or nativity scene - and ART OF THE CRECHE celebrates this art, surveying over a hundred nativities from around the world and the craft involved in their production. The author is a top collector of creches and a former international aid worker: he and his late wife thus traveled the world in search of these unique nativities. With its color photos, international focus and spiritual insights, ART OF THE CRECHE is a top pick for all kinds of collections, from spiritual holdings to general-interest public libraries.

The Celtic Design Book
Aidan Meehan
Thames & Hudson
500 - 5th Avenue, New York NY 10110
0500286744, $22.50

This edition of Aidan Meehan's Celtic art is actually three of his books under one cover: A BEGINNER'S MANUAL, KNOTWORK: THE SECRET METHOD OF THE SCRIBES and ILLUMINATED LETTERS. From a beginner's introduction to Celtic forms and geometric methods to a detailed in-depth review of knotwork and the history behind it, this comes from a long-time researcher in Celtic knot design who has produced an eight-volume series, and comes complete with full-page black and white design examples throughout. Any art library or any library with more than a casual interest in Celtic history and culture needs THE CELTIC DESIGN BOOK.

The Computer Shelf

Oracle Essentials: Oracle Database 11g
Rick Greenwald, Robert Stackowiak & Jonathan Stern
1005 Gravenstein Highway North, Sebastopol, CA 95472
0596514549, $39.99

The 4th updated edition of ORACLE ESSENTIALS is a must for any library strong in databases in general and Oracle in particular, offering an easily-read reference packed with tips on data structures, installation, networking, and customization processes. Features beyond the Oracle database: Express, Fusion Middleware, and more - compliment specifics on the latest Oracle Database 11g, providing a comprehensive reference for new and old users alike!

Learning ActionScript 3.0: A Beginner's Guide
Rich Shupe with Zevan Rosser
c/o O'Reilly Publishers
1005 Gravenstein Highway North, Sebastopol, CA 95472
059652787X, $39.99

Any computer library strong in web development titles in general and ActionScript in particular will want the beginner's guide to Flash, LEARNING ACTIONSCRIPT 3.0. It's an excellent introduction which also lends well to classroom use and assignment, covering all the basics of how ActionScript and Flash work and surveying logic, content, transferring projects to ActionScript, waveform visualization, loading HTML and more. Chapters offer hands-on exercises to reinforce skills building learning and also pair well with a companion web site offering material for all the exercises plus test quizzes. ActionScript learners will find it an essential - and surprisingly easy - reference.

Data Visualization
Alexandru C. Telea
A.K. Peters Ltd.
888 Worcester Street Suite 230, Wellesley, MA 02482
9781568813066, $374.00

Data visualization specialists use math, computer science and physics to create images that improve understanding of data sets, and this introductory text, perfect for college-level computer libraries and classroom assignment alike, offers a basic introduction to the field and its various visualization techniques. Here are cross-disciplinary keys to understanding such sets and how imaging and computer graphics works, with chapters blending math formulas with imaging techniques and specs. An excellent reference for any advanced, college-level holding strong in computer graphics or data visualization techniques.

Vmware ESX Server in the Enterprise
Edward L. Haletky
Prentice Hall Press
c/o Pearson Technology Group
801 East 96th Street, #300, Indianapolis, IN 46240-3759
0132302071, $49.99

VMWARE ESX SERVER IN THE ENTERPRISE: PLANNING AND SECURING VIRTUALIZATION SERVERS is an excellent real-world guide to planning and managing modern virtual infrastructure platforms, and is a pick for college-level libraries strong in computer networking studies. Many techniques and practices seemingly unique to the ESX server system apply to all current virtualization platforms, not just ESX - which lends this title value beyond its apparent specialty focus.

Building European Spatial Data Infrastructures
Ian Masser
380 New York Street, Redlands, CA 92373-8100
9781589481657, $24.95

European governments and the EU are promoting geographic information technologies to help citizens get access to location-based information, and so both computer and business libraries at the college level will find essential Building European Spatial Data Infrastructures, a guide to SDIs which include the spatial data, technology and policies needed to exchange, use and manage such data. Author Ian Masser is one of the world's SDI experts, but here he's able to provide a nontechnical guide to how GIS is used in both government and private endeavors, making his guide surprisingly accessible across genres.

The Christian Studies Shelf

Love That Does Justice
Thomas L. Schubeck
Orbis Books
Wash Building, Box 308, Maryknoll, NY 10545
9781570757464, $22.00

This gathering of discussions on Christian social ethics for classroom use provides an excellent set of narrative examples to pair Biblical teachings with everyday life challenges. From early discussions of Christian martyrdom to issues of Christians using force, LOVE THAT DOES JUSTICE provides an exceptional set of links between Christian beliefs and everyday living perfect for any Christian collection.

The Education Shelf

Secrets to Success for Social Studies Teachers
Ellen Kottler and Nancy P. Gallavan
Corwin Press
2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320

The authors have developed a specific formula for giving both novices and experienced teachers alike and provide these secrets to success in their set of guidelines Secrets to Success for Social Studies Teachers, specific to social studies interactions. Here are tips based on both the authors' experiences as social studies teachers and the insights of colleagues, all distilled into a set of tips for formulating meaningful instruction - perfect for college-level collections catering to educators new and old.

Corwin Press
2455 Teller Road, Thousand Oaks, CA 91320

Teachers, administrators and collections catering to them will appreciate Richard Zagranski, William Whigham and Patrice Dardenne's UNDERSTANDING STANDARDS-BASED EDUCATION: A PRACTICAL GUIDE FOR TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS (9781412955720, $24.95), a survey of the data-driven curriculum design process for educators. Here are descriptions of NCLB and beyond, examining guidelines and providing charts, templates and rubrics for reinforcement of real-world applications. Teachers of Grade 4 will appreciate Gayle H. Gregory and Carolyn Chapman's ACTIVITIES FOR THE DIFFERENTIATED CLASSROOM (9781412953405), a survey of classroom activities based on the book. Projects and worksheets for this grade level are excellent idea resources for education libraries. Every library catering to teachers needs Jane Bluestein's THE WIN-WIN CLASSROOM: A FRESH AND POSITIVE LOOK AT CLASSROOM MANAGEMENT (9781412959001): it packs in discussions of learning styles, brain functioning, and all the latest research on the emotional and social issues affecting classroom management and success, offering charts, real-world examples and tips on how to engage learners and build an encouraging classroom environment. Chapters teach how to recognize and support emotional and social development in students, going beyond the usual educational primer to apply tested teaching techniques. Professional learning communities have improved both instructional objectives and student achievement, and this third volume of Alan M. Blankstein, Paul Houston, Robert Cole, Editors' SUSTAINING PROFESSIONAL LEARNING COMMUNITIES: The Soul of Educational Leadership (9781412949385, $29.95) offers an excellent discussion of key strategies and ideas for sustaining the work of these communities, from developing effective leadership teams to supporting social-emotional learning in schools. From managing transitions to sustainability issues, these articles address the heart of PLC involvement and make for a top recommendation for any college-level education collection as well as for working educators at all levels. Robin Fogarty and Judy Stoehr's INTEGRATING CURRICULA WITH MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES: TEAMS, THEMES, & THREADS (9781412955539, $34.95) advocates creating an integrated curricula to promote higher-order thinking and decision-making skills in all students. This second edition offers strategies for integrated lesson plan development and classroom teams, showing how to blend life skills into curriculum requirements and how to adopt an interdisciplinary approach to experiential learning. College-level teacher libraries will find this an outstanding reference. Judah L. Schwartz and Joan M. Kenney's TASKS AND RUBRICS FOR BALANCED MATHEMATICS ASSESSMENT IN PRIMARY AND ELEMENTARY GRADES (9781412957311) packs in assessments to help teachers gather accurate data bout student strengths and weaknesses. From analyzing the learning components of tasks and measuring individual success to adjusting strategies for classrooms and individuals like and discerning partial from full competency, TASKS AND RUBRICS provides an outstanding measurement guide math libraries will need. Ellen Kottler, Jeffrey Kottler and Chris Street's ENGLISH LANGUAGE LEARNERS IN YOUR CLASSROOM, 3RD EDITION (9781412958172, $29.95) provides the third updated edition of a best-seller providing teachers and specialists with new instruction on building communication skills. From daily lesson plans for adaptations for English language learners to tables, checklists and guidelines on integrating English learning into overall classroom strategy, chapters offer anecdotes, examples and more. Nancy Frey and Douglas Fisher's TEACHING VISUAL LITERACY (9781412953122, $32.95) tells educators how to use comic books, graphic novels, anime and more to encourage comprehension and thinking skills. From assignments for different grade levels to analyzing why teachers are reluctant to use comics in the classroom, this offers up important keys connecting visual literacy with written language skills development, and is essential for any teacher who wishes to be meaningful. These are strong picks for educator's libraries.

The Social Issues Shelf

Global Vigilantes
David Pratten and Atreyee Sen, Editors
Columbia University Press
61 West 62nd Street, New York NY 10021
9780231700313, $32.50

Vigilante movements and ideologies are spreading around the world, and GLOBAL VIGILANTES is the first book to provide a detailed overview of this movement, considering elements of modern vigilantism and its relationship to society and authority structures alike. College-level sociology students in particular will appreciate the blend of history and social insights, and chapters that offer plenty of footnoted source material references to back up facts.

The Political Science Shelf

The Politics of Freedom
David Boaz
Cato Institute
1000 Massachusetts Avenue NW, Washington DC 20001
9781933995144, $22.95

THE POLITICS OF FREEDOM: TAKING ON THE LEFT, THE RIGHT, AND THREATS TO OUR LIBERTIES provides college-level collections strong in political science with a powerful discussion of partisan agendas and failures and successes in social management. From important connections to basic political and social freedoms to underlying politics which support such freedoms, this should be an item of choice for not only political science and sociology collections, but should be assigned as supplemental reading for any classes debating civil liberties.

The Military Shelf

Hitler's Bandit Hunters
Philip W. Blood
Potomac Books Inc.
22841 Quicksilver Drive, Dulles, VA 20166-2012
9781597971577, $19.95

Libraries strong in World War II history will find this an in-depth and detailed examination of Bandenbekampfung, a team which represented the German approach to security in occupied areas during World War II. Special military libraries will find the detail and depth satisfying and unique, with documentary and oral evidence considering policies, structures, and politics like. HITLER'S BANDIT HUNTERS: THE SS AND THE NAZI OCCUPATION OF EUROPE offers far more insight and detail than a more casual examination, making it a recommended pick for libraries seeking a scholarly reference.

Osprey Publishing
400 Hahn Road, Westminster, MD 21157

Steven J. Zaloga's GERMAN V-WEAPON SITES 1943-45 (9781846032479, $18.95) joins others in Osprey's specialty 'Fortress' series, surveying how the deployment of German missiles during this time required new thinking on launch sites and purposes. In-depth military libraries covering World War II receive details on the configuration and plans of these heavy missile sites and will find the specifics make for excellent analysis. Ian MacPherson McCulloch's HIGHLANDER IN THE FRENCH-INDIAN WAR 1756-67 (9781846032745, $18.95) joins the 'Warrior' series in focusing on the daily lives of the fighting men of the times, and comes from a Colonial American historian who uses rare resources and color art to capture the story of three Scottish Highland regiments that operated in North American even though forbidden to wear the kilt or carry arms. Robert Forczyk's SEVASTOPOL 1942: VON MANSTEIN'S TRIUMPH (9781846032219, $19.95) is a masterpiece of command strategies and battle tactics and should be a center of any World War II library. Joining others in the 'Campaign' series, it surveys the mission of the Army Group South to seize the Crimea to prevent Soviet air attacks on the Polesti oilfields in Romania. Vintage black and white photos help document a moving history. Wargame players will relish FIELD OF GLORY (9781846033131, $34.95), a set of complete rules with explanations on how to play, diagrams of key points, photos of miniatures in action, army lists and much more. From different action phases to reference materials, this set of wargaming rules for ancient and medieval tabletop gaming will delight players. STORM OF ARROWS: LATE MEDIEVAL EUROPE AT WAR (9781846033452, $19.95) and RISE OF ROME: REPUBLICATION ROME AT WAR (9781846033445, $19.95) offer fine companion volumes for players, providing clear specifics on regional battles and history. Hundreds of researched troop types are accompanied by maps, art and overviews perfect for military libraries and any specializing in wargaming.

The Health/Medicine Shelf

My Father's Heart: A Son's Journey
Steven McKee
DaCapo Lifelong Books
c/o Perseus Books Group
Eleven Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142
9780738210971, $25.00

As a teenager author Steven McKee watched his father die of a heart attack in their living room, part of a family chain of heart disease and death caused by lifestyle and family heritage. Disappointed by his father's ignoring of his disease, the author vowed to keep his heart in top condition - yet a lifetime of dieting and exercise didn't change his own diagnosis of serious cardiovascular disease. McKee's probe into a family heritage of illness makes for a moving story blending health and genetic insights with his own discoveries of motivations for change and health, making for a moving, engrossing survey hard to put down. Both health libraries and general-interest collections will find it involving.

The Real Estate Shelf

The Complete Guide to Locating, Negotiating, and Buying Real Estate Foreclosures
Frankie Orlando & Marsha Ford
Atlantic Publishing Company
1405 SW 6th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34471
9780910627030, $24.95

Real estate investors can amass a fortune by purchasing foreclosed homes at various foreclosure auctions, and this guide is the resource novices and pros will find an outstanding key to locating such bargains. From auctions and online processes to making it easy for bargains to come your way, THE COMPLETE GUIDE is a survey investors will find easy to begin with, making it the perfect item of choice for public libraries.

The Cookbook Shelf

Picture Yourself Decorating Cakes
Linda Shonk and Sandy Doell
Thomson Course Technology
25 Thomson Place, Boston, MA 02210
1598634402, $24.99

Any who have attempted cake baking and decorating as well as newcomers to the entire process will find PICTURE YOURSELF DECORATING CAKES an outstanding acquisition, pairing cake recipes with decorating tips and methods for producing the best cake. From different kinds of icings and their qualities to basic tools and baking secrets, PICTURE YOURSELF DECORATING CAKES is packed with tips and even includes an instructional DVD, making it a top pick for any library strong in food decorating and desserts.

The Food You Crave
Ellie Krieger
Taunton Press
Box 5507, Newtown, CT 06470-5507
9781600850219, $28.00

From buttermilk pancakes with strawberry sauce to spaghetti and meatballs, THE FOOD YOU CRAVE: LUSCIOUS RECIPES FOR A HEALTHY LIFE takes comfort foods normally rich in fats and carbos and provides a healthier version. Ellie Krieger is host of Food Network's HEALTHY APPETITE, and packs in recipes designed to maximize appeal and nutrition. From appealing ideas for quick grab-and-go breakfasts to snacks and international-inspired fare, THE FOOD YOU CRAVE blends color photos with easy variations on high-appeal dishes and will be an attraction for any general-interest library strong in cookbook lending.

Killer Pies
Stephanie Anderson
Chronicle Books
85 - 2nd Street, San Francisco CA 94105
1932855572, $16.95

There are so many pie cookbooks on the market that one might wonder at the need for yet another - but you won't find most of these pie recipes in competing titles. They are compiled from some fifty expert bakers across the U.S. and Canada, and feature small color photos, clear directions, and introductions on the pie makers and recipe origins. From Plum-Strawberry Crumb Pie to Chocolate-Covered Cherry Pie, these are decadent dishes packed with flavor and appeal. Public lending libraries, even those with other pie cookbooks on their shelves, will find it filled with appeal.

The Business Shelf

GS Tutorial for Marketing
Fred L. Miller
ESRI Press
380 New York Street, Redlands, CA 92373-8100
9781559480797, $79.95

A trial copy of ArcGIS Desktop 9.2 software on DVD is bundled into a handbook packed with tips on marketing and the specific applications of geographic information systems to the business industry. Small and large businesses will find GIS a fine analysis tool for customer profiling and sales routing: this manual is designed to supplement any undergraduate marketing program and provides a chapter focus on marketing relating to curriculum themes at the college level. Marketing students will find their GIS skills as well as their marketing tools enhanced, as will any business professional involved in marketing using GIS tools.

How to Open & Operate a Financially Successful Retail Business
Janet Engle
Atlantic Publishing Group
1405 SW 6th Avenue, Ocala, FL 34471-0640
9781601381163, $39.96

A companion cd rom may make casual library lending a challenge but any collection strong in retail business 'how to' guides will find the information accessible and invaluable in How to Open & Operate a Financially Successful Retail Business. Here are hundreds of tips on streamlining a business, increasing performance and profitability, and handling a business structure both before and after opening. The companion cd-rom packs in all forms used in the book plus a pre-written editable business plan in Word format. Any would-be retail store owner will find this a fine introduction.

Essential Guide to Workplace Investigations
Attorney Lisa Guerin
Nolo Press
950 Parker Street, Berkeley, CA 94710
1413306918, $39.99

Everything an employer needs to know about investigating and resolving workplace complaints and issues is packed into this book, making it a top recommendation for any business library strong in human resources guides. It's the first on the market to teach businesses how to investigate and resolve all types of complains, from harassment and discrimination to workplace violence and employee theft, and walks the manager through ten basic steps from the initial decision to investigate to interviewing, gathering and evaluating evidence, and taking action. All business libraries need this.

The Environmental Studies Shelf

Tropical Rainforests
Peter D. Moore
Facts on File
132 West 31st Street, 17th Floor, New York NY 10001
9780816059348, $70.00

Joining others in the 'Ecosystem' series but standing well alone also is a fine exploration of tropical forests of the world which reviews ancient history, biology, ecosystem development, and the geology and impact of rainforests on the world. Over 100 photos and line drawings spice and color a presentation filled with sidebars of facts, making for an excellent recommendation not just for middle to high school libraries, but for general-interest collections seeking a colorful, fact-filled and easily-accessible guide.

The Travel Shelf

A Chant to Soothe Wild Elephants
Jaed Coffin
DaCapo Press
c/o Perseus Books Group
Eleven Cambridge Center, Cambridge, MA 02142
9780306815263, $16.00

This blend of memoir, cultural observation and travelogue follows the journey of a half-Thai American man who left his privileged New England college to become an ordained Buddhist monk in his mother's native Thai village. His spiritual and social journey comes to life in this account of a young man caught between two cultures and very different worlds. To call it a 'memoir' is too simple: to limit it to travel sections of libraries is too confined. It's an involving gem of a read.

A Woman's World Again
Marybeth Bond, Editor
Travelers' Tales
835 Alma Street, Palo Alto, CA 94301
1932361529, $17.95

In the 1990s the stories of women travelers A WOMAN'S WORLD won a Lowell Thomas Gold Medal for Best Travel Book award: twelve years later here are over thirty new journeys exploring women's identity, issues, and travel experiences from Tanzania and Mexico to India, Paris and Brazil. A WOMAN'S WORLD AGAIN is adventure travel at it best: both travel collections and women's issues holdings will find it a popular pick.

The Photography Shelf

Amherst Media
Box 586, Buffalo, NY 14226

Bill Hurter's MASTER LIGHTING GUIDE FOR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS (9781584282198, $34.95) is an outstanding guide for any who would specialize in wedding pictures and duplicate the desirable results of pros. From selecting the best from natural and artificial lighting choices to controlling color, capturing important moments at all stages of preparations, and producing striking group photos, the large-size and often full-page color examples are packed with insight. Jeff Smith's POSING TECHNIQUES FOR LOCATION PORTRAIT PHOTOGRAPHY (9781584282259, $34.95) tells how to design flattering poses for outdoor and location use, and is for neo-pros dealing with clients. From posing subjects seated or laying on the ground to using location props to create poses, POSING TECHNIQUES imparts all the tricks of the trade which differentiate casual amateur photos from professional, polished results. Chris Nelson's MASTER GUIDE FOR GLAMOUR PHOTOGRAPHY: DIGITAL TECHNIQUES AND IMAGES (9781584282013, $34.95) tells how to create and capture a style which flatters women, how to work with female clients, and how to develop a marketing plan for them. Glamour portraits are given dramatic and revealing insight in a guide which surveys which poses work best under what conditions - and why. Any library catering to neo-professional photographers will find these clear, appealing collections of specific tips on polishing results.

The Needlecraft Shelf

Martingale & Company
20205 - 144th Avenue N.E., Woodinville, WA 98072-8478

Step-by-step techniques for nearly twenty projects combining beadwork with crochet are provided in a fine directory of crochet projects friendly to crochet beginners in Ruth Herring's Crochet for Beaders (9781564778246, $21.95). Here are colorful earrings, hair ties, wrist bands and more: each project providing the basics of crochet and beading blends, then showing how to expand skills and style with more advanced stitches. Any library strong in needlework project guides will find this a popular lend. Twenty fashion knit and crochet styles are offered in STITCHSTYLE MITTENS (9781564778284, $17.95) covering everything from mittens and muffs to evening and driving gloves, fingerless gloves and more. Any knitter or crocheter who can read pattern instructions will appreciate the variety of this guide.

Stephanie Pearl-McPhee Casts Off
Stephanie Pearl-McPhee
Storey Publications
210 MassMoca Way, North Adams, MA 02147
9781580176583, $14.95

'Yarn Harlot' Stephanie Pearl-McPhee provides an evocative, fun story of knitting which blends a humorous history with insights into knitting changes past and present, from the first knitting guild's formation to the Internet's effects on knitting possibilities. From tips on how to 'leave a yarn shop without spending money' to the common affliction of 'second sock syndrome', knitters will readily recognize themselves here - and this is a perfect title for both libraries and gift-giving to that knitter who 'has everything'.

The Antiques/Collectibles Shelf

High Fashion Handbags
Adrienne Astrologo and Nancy Schiffer
Schiffer Publishing Company
4880 Lower Valley Road, Atglen, PA 19310
9780764325083, $39.95

HIGH FASHION HANDBAGS: CLASSIC VINTAGE DESIGNS packs in over three hundred handbags from top fashion designers around the world, covering everything from their construction and designer logos to values and the design which became classics and collectibles over the decades. Bags by various designers are profiled, along with values, making for a fine recommendation for either public libraries catering to specialty fashion collectors, or for art libraries.

The Comix/Graphic Novel Shelf

Krazy and Ignatz: 1941-42
Bill Blackbeard, Editor
Fantagraphics Books
7563 Lake City Way Northeast, Seattle, WA 98115
9781560978879, $19.95

KRAZY AND IGNATZ: 1941-1942 follows the love story of KRAZY KAT in a volume which packs in color Sunday strips from all the 1941 and 1942 comics. Any library specializing in comics history needs this: it provides a gorgeous display of full-page strips and captures well the art and sentiments of the Krazy Kat comics of its time.

Silver Age Sci-Fi Companion
Mike W. Barr
TwoMorrows Publishing
10407 Bedfordtown Drive, Raleigh, NC 27614
9781893905818, $19.95

The space adventures and worlds envisioned by a classic DC Comics series edited by Julius Schwartz and written by Gardner Fox and John Broome is revealed in SILVER AGE SCI-FI COMPANION, a consider of the series stories of Strange Adventures and Mystery in Space which includes reviews of complete series and behind-the-scenes insights on writers and artists alike. Any Silver Age comics collector, library catering to them, or science fiction fan will relish the plot synopses and insights.

Frank Cho
Eric Nolen-Weathington
TwoMorrows Publishing
10407 Bedfordtown Drive, Raleigh, NC 27614
9781893905849, $14.95

Frank Cho loved to draw women, monkeys and dinosaurs and earned a following though his Liberty Meadows works, earning my prestigious awards in the comic industry: his biography joins others in the 'Modern Masters' series celebrating comic book artists of modern times, and provides an excellent selection of black and white sketches to accompany text exploring Cho's works and perspective. No library strong in comic history should be without this.

The Audiobook Shelf

The Shooters
W.B. Griffin
Penguin Audio
375 Hudson Street, New York NY 10014
9780143142454, $49.95

Dick Hill's experienced voice lends drama and appeal to the fast-paced espionage story of one Castillo, who quickly finds himself over his head in dealing with an international drug trade ring and balancing between presidential dictate and a missing man. Intelligence and military objectives catch Castillo squarely in the middle in a tense drama packed with intrigue and powerful twists of plot. An excellent pick for any listener strong in audio intrigue.

Magic Kingdom for Sale - Sold!
Terry Brooks
Brilliance Audio
PO Box 887, Grand Haven, MI 49417
142335012X, $29.95

Audio narrator Dick Hill has had vast experience narrating gripping stories, which is one of the selling points to the audio version of Book One in the 'magic Kingdom of Landover' series, MAGIC KINGDOM FOR SALE - SOLD!. Landover is a real magic kingdom purchased by Ben, who finds only after his acquisition that the kingdom is in ruin. There's even an evil witch and a dragon wrecking havoc on his new purchase. Add in the contested rights to his assuming the position of King and you have a hilarious, fun blend of mystery and fantasy.

True Believers
Nicholas Sparks
Time Warner Audio
135 West 50th Street, New York NY 10020
1600242553, $14.98

David Aaron Baker narrates the gripping novel telling of one Jeremy Marsh, a young New Yorker expert on debunking the supernatural. His journey to a small town to write about its ghostly lights brings him in touch with one Lexie, lacking in love and a future until Jeremy arrives in town: their relationship will bring both changes and challenges, inviting Jeremy to leave his old high-powered life to believe in something very different. Romance and faith come to life in this gripping story.

Rich Dad's Advisors Box Set Volume 1
Blair Singer and Garrett Sutton, Esq.
Hachette Audio
237 Park Avenue, New York NY 10017
1600241190, $39.98

Three 'Rich Dad's Advisors' audios are available in one audio package for the first time: SALESDOGS, OWN YU OWN CORPORATION and ABCS OF BUILDING A BUSINESS TEAM THAT WINS. These interconnected business audios pack in a wealth of tips on building a better business: while individually they are hard-hitting, together they provide a far more uniform strategy and thus are a top pick not only for general-interest collections but for high school and business lending libraries at all levels.

The California Shelf

Alpine Sierra Trailblazer
Jerry & Janine Sprout
Diamond Valley Company
89 Lower Manzanita, Markleeville, CA 96120
9780978637101, $17.95

ALPINE SIERRA TRAILBLAZER: WHERE TO HIKE, SKI, BIKE, FISH, DRIVE FROM TAHOE TO YOSEMITE provides a fine guide to hundreds of Sierra adventures for families and avid hikes alike. Six driving tours, a section for kids and families, and special directions to wildflower display and swim spots accompany a review of over eighty trailheads for all levels. From ski and mountain bike trips to trails leading to lakes and rivers for fishing and kayaking, ALPINE SIERRA TRAILBLAZER is packed with travel details and perfect for any California library appealing to hikers and outdoor adventurers.

Los Angeles River
Ted Elrick and Friends of the L.A. River
Arcadia Publishing
420 Wando Park Blvd., Mount Pleasant, SC 29464
9780738547183, $19.99

Southern California libraries and those catering to L.A. residents will find this new 'Images of America' series addition a fine collection pick, focusing on the taming of the Los Angeles River just before World War II, and its subsequent trashing. This collection of vintage photos examines the county, comes from both private and public archives, and covers the importance of the arroyo to the growth and development of Los Angeles as a whole. A fine portrait of Los Angeles history evolves which is a top pick for any Los Angeles history collection or public library.

I, California
Stacey Grenrock Woods
1230 Avenue of the Americas, New York NY 100020
0743274911, $24.00

Deserving of ongoing mention and recommendation is I, CALIFORNIA: THE OCCASIONAL HISTORY OF A CHILD ACTRESS/TAP DANCER/RECORD STORE CLERK/THAI WAITRESS/ NIGHTCLUB BOOKER/DAILY SHOW CORRESPONDENT/SEX COLUMNIST/RECURRING CHARACTER AND WHATEVER ELSE. It's a hilarious memoir and biography of an 'almost famous' girl who has experienced much of California's counter-culture worlds. A fun and lively memoir all California collections should have.

The Fantasy/SciFi Shelf

The Lifehouse Trilogy
Spider Robinson
Baen Books
Box 1403, Riverdale, NY 10471
1416555110, $24.00

Three interrelated stories of individuals caught up in very different worlds will provide readers with suspense and intrigue alike, creating moving and vivid stories hard to put down. MINDKILLER presents a future where 'wireheads' addicted to electric brain currents are the new junkies, with one Karen determined to bring down those who sell wireheading equipment; TIME PRESSURE tells of a lovely time traveler who presents Sam with a dilemma and possible romance, and LIFEHOUSE tells of a woman who has lost key memories of possible aliens or superhumans. All are gripping, involving stories not to be missed.

The Mystery/Suspense Shelf

Wild Inferno
Sandi Ault
Berkeley Prime Crime
375 Hudson Street, New York NY 10014
9780425219225, $23.95

WILD INDIGO introduced the Bureau of Land management agent Jamaica Wild to the investigative mystery world: she returns here with a new set of challenges; but no prior familiarity is needed to appreciate her routine and focus. A wildfire on an Indian reservation leads Jamaica on a chase after a killer - compounded by an out-of-control fire and clues which lead her to a troubled past. Intrigue and mystery make for a fast-paced mystery perfect for any solid mystery collection.

The Library DVD Shelf

Weird Science Complete Seasons 1 & 2
A&E Videos
c/o A&E Television Networks
235 East 45th Street New York, NY 10017
1422904148, $44.95

Two regular high school nerds struggle with their unpopularity and use their computer savvy to create their supermodel dream girl - who has the power to grant all their desires. Unfortunately her interpretations of their wishes often goes awry - with strange results. WEIRD SCIENCE considers the hilarious results and is a fine DVD collection based on the classic John Hughes film, presenting every episode from the first two seasons in a DVD collection which includes a trivia quiz, cast biographies and audio commentaries by cast members.

Criss Angel Mindfreak: The Complete Season Three
A&E Videos
c/o A&E Television Networks
235 East 45th Street New York, NY 10017
1422906353, $34.95

The complete Season 3 of the hit series featuring Criss Angel captures all his stunt performances and mystic episodes from the third season making it a hit for prior fans who have seen the series. All 20 episodes star a range of scenes, include Criss' celebrity guests, and host additional scenes and features. An outstanding set of illusionist specials.

The Women's Studies Shelf

Seduction and the Secret Power of Women
Meri Lao
Inner Traditions
One Park Street, Rochester, VT 05767
9781594772016, $19.95

The female archetype and its powers are explored in this survey of Siren images, which serve as a metaphor for psychological challenge. Sirens and their mermaid sisters have long captivated artists and writers around the world: now the lure and attraction of the Siren is considered in an excellent New Age survey appropriate for both women's studies and new age collections.

James A. Cox, Editor-in-Chief
Midwest Book Review
278 Orchard Drive, Oregon, WI 53575-1129
phone: 1-608-835-7937

Diane C. Donovan, Editor & Senior Reviewer
12424 Mill Street, Petaluma, CA 94952
phone: 1-707-795-4629

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